The Detroit Lions’ Monday Night loss to the Baltimore Ravens was a painful one for the team and the fan base. Few games in Motown over the last two decades held as much hype and meaning as this one did, with massive playoff implications on the line for both conferences.
Calvin Johnson dropped the ball on this one. Routine catches that Johnson makes 99-of-100 times were spilled onto the turf on more than one occasion. More surprising than that, however, were the difficult catches that Johnson couldn’t come down with. Lions fans are perhaps more accustomed to the star receiver making the impossible play than the routine one, so those are the ones that stand out as missed opportunities.
No drop was bigger than the one on the failed two-point attempt following the Lions’ go-ahead touchdown in the fourth. They came out with a quads bunch to Matthew Stafford’s right, ensuring Johnson a one-on-one matchup to the Left. Stafford attempted a back shoulder fade that wasn’t perfect, but the way Johnson played it, he had no chance of coming down in bounds with the ball.
Sour grapes aside, the referees were terrible in this one; they were completely inconsistent throughout, especially when it came to pass interference calls. And can somebody please explain how they’re calling offsides these days? The defense used to be able to jump back, unless the offensive lineman’s movement was a direct result of the flinch. That’s not how they’re calling it anymore, and it’s drastically slowing down the game.
Despite the loss, it’s not time to fire Jim Schwartz, and it’s not time to abandon Stafford. The team let their fans down on Monday, but there is still a glimmer of playoff hope on the horizon. Let’s see how this all plays out.