Lions vs Bears: Offensive Issues, Stafford Foil Lions' Chances to Beat Chicago

Andrew GardaFeatured ColumnistOctober 23, 2012

CHICAGO, IL - OCTOBER 22: Matthew Stafford #9 of the Detroit Lions is sacked by Shea McClellin #99 and Stephen Paea #92 of the Chicago Bears at Soldier Field on October 22, 2012 in Chicago, Illinois. (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)
Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images

Something is wrong with Matt Stafford.

Really, it's been the question for the entire beginning of the season and the answer isn't simple.

The offense, as a whole, has been unable to generate anything before the fourth quarter and they paid for it again on a night when the Detroit defense was able to hold the Bears' offense close enough to give them a fighting chance.

It comes down to Stafford who looked uncomfortable all night and missed more than one deep pass by a huge margin.

Stafford had an awful case of "happy feet" both in and out of the pocket. As a result, the quarterback rarely set his feet and constantly threw off his back foot.

The result was the aforementioned inaccuracy.

Which was compounded by an inability of Calvin Johnson to break free from coverage.

Megatron is Megatron, but you can slow down the mighty receiver with some physical play. Bears cornerback Charles Tillman also made some tremendous plays on the ball, slapping away a sure touchdown and generally harassing Johnson all night.

Tillman did get a pass interference penalty, but he was likely fine with that as his overall physical style of play stymied Johnson and more than made up for it.

The whole thing was compounded when they lost Nate Burleson for the season with a broken leg.

Defensively, the Lions were generally able to slow the Bears' offense down, but ultimately they had no answer for Brandon Marshall.

Once again, the Bears showed what they could do, but aren't quite able to do consistently.

Finally, the special teams issues loomed large again as Stefan Logan pooched a kick and looked shaky the entire night. While Devin Hester didn't get a chance to break off a huge return, the Lions' special teams still look anything but.

This game may look close on the scoreboard, but it was never quite that close in reality.

Now the Lions have to regroup, fix their issues and try to find a way to get back into the division race.


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