Mitch Stringer-USA TODAY Sports
A week after losing multiple scores due to avoidable penalties, the Detroit Lions once again committed far too many mistakes for comfort.
This week's penalty tally wound up at eight, for a grand total of 105 yards. A Willie Young "illegal hands to the face" penalty negated a beautiful strip-sack by Ziggy Ansah. Instead of a turnover, the Cardinals kept possession.
On the very next play, Israel Idonije crashed into Carson Palmer's legs and was flagged for "roughing the passer." All of the sudden, a drive that should have been over instead morphed into an Arizona field goal that closed the score to 21-19 in Detroit's favor.
Bill Bentley was flagged twice for pass interference, and both were good calls. The second one—which occurred in the end zone as Bentley desperately chased after Andre Roberts after being beaten off the line—was one of the easiest calls an official can make. Bentley crashed into Roberts before the ball arrived, with his back to the ball and his hands flailing wildly overhead. That mistake set up the game-winning touchdown.
Micheal Spurlock's one good return was wiped out by a holding penalty on DeJuan Gomes. Otherwise, it would have been a drive that was going to start at the Detroit 28-yard line instead commencing from the 8-yard line.
I didn't see any bad calls against the Lions, but the officials really missed one that incensed Lions fans everywhere. On a play where Arizona appeared to fumble and there was a scrum right in front of the Cardinals bench for the recovery, Cardinals coach Bruce Arians quite clearly throws a challenge flag onto the field well before any decision is made about the result of the play by the officials. As any Lions fan can tell you, that's supposed to be a 15-yard penalty, even though the challenge proved correct.