Tuesday Morning Running Back Week Three: Lions Snap Skid
It's the home base of the declining U.S. auto industry, as well as the home of baseball's Tigers, who are clinging to a sparse two-game lead in the AL Central as I write this.
Long story short, the people of Detroit needed a pick-me-up to get them thinking positive again.
Well, they got it in the most unlikely source.
Finally, after 19 straight losses, the Detroit Lions tasted victory for the first time in over a year.
Behind the leadership of confident rookie quarterback Matthew Stafford, and the power running of Kevin Smith, the Lions were finally able to halt the snickers from other NFL fans, at least for one week.
Of course the Lions victory was aided by the poor play of the Redskins, who missed several opportunities of their own on offense, and could not stop the Lions from running out the clock on their final drive.
But a win's a win, and it's especially sweet if you've waited 21 months for one. Therefore, I don't blame the Ford Family for acting like they won the Super Bowl when time ran out.
A victory tastes sweet no matter how long you wait for it or who you beat. The sweetest ones however are the ones that are few are far between.
Elsewhere in week three action:
- Right now, the Redskins must question if either Jim Zorn is the right coach for their system, or Jason Campbell is the right quarterback for it. In other words, a change must be made if they want to save their season.
- It was nice to see that the Patriots were more comfortable running the ball on Sunday. It was even nicer to learn that my team has a coach that is willing to go for it on fourth down deep in his own territory!
- I never realized how much Falcons coach Mike Smith looks like Steve Martin until I saw him up close on Sunday.
- The pressure's on Donovan McNabb once he returns from his cracked rib. Not only did Kevin Kolb throw for over 300 yards on Sunday, but he also proved that he can control the offense without Brian Westbrook.
- Kudos to the Jets David Harris who had an interception and a sack on the Titans' final two possessions to preserve New York's victory over the Titans.
- The problem for the Texans right now is their run defense. Maurice Jones-Drew ran all over them on Sunday.
- Aaron Rodgers was the right man for the job in Green Bay. His strong arm led to several deep passes that led to scores, and he's gone over 100 passes without throwing a pick.
- He may have overthrown some balls and taken a lot of punishment on his body, but Brett Favre can be as good a clutch quarterback as anyone in the NFL. His game-winning throw to Greg Lewis proved it.
- Phillip Rivers was smart to realize that the Dolphins had collapsed the pocket on him. Therefore, he wasn't afraid to run with it and score the touchdown on a quarterback draw that put the Chargers ahead for good.
- Chad Pennington's shoulder injury is the most crushing blow to a team in the NFL so far this season.
- Josh McDaniels is my early, and I stress early, choice for NFL coach of the year. He's put his faith in Kyle Orton, and the defense did not allow a touchdown for the second straight week.
- Steelers K Jeff Reed was a goat again missing a key field goal that could have put the game away.
- Not even Otto Graham can save the Browns now.
- Devin Hester told Jay Cutler to give him the ball before the Bears final drive. Not surprisingly, Cutler's perfect passing drive culminated in a 36-yard TD to Hester and a Bears win.
- Did someone forget to separate the colors from the whites while washing the Seahawks jerseys last week?
- The Saints won at Buffalo with a strong defensive effort, but perhaps more shocking is that TO did not record a catch in a game for the first time since 1996! I bet he'll want out of Buffalo by the end of the season.
- The Cowboys addressed every concern they had last week last night. The running game was dominant even without Marion Barber, and the pass rush looked like it finally mastered the 3-4 defense.
- It should be a good week four with the Pats playing the Ravens and the Pack playing Favre for the very first time. See you next Tuesday for all the analysis.
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