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 GAME DAY THREAD: Lions @ Cardinals 
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Post Re: GAME DAY THREAD: Lions @ Cardinals
My thoughts.

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We all know this offense can't move without CJ and Bush on their game. Pett looked rough all around, even blocking. Linehan really screwed the pooch by not using Fauria and Scheff to get short yards.


Pett cant catch, his blocking was fine. If you are referring to the end around play to Burleson. Abraham worked his way up field and Pettigrew had no chance to block him inside. Burleson would ve easily had the edge had he cut underneath Pettigrew who did the right thing by pushing Abraham further upfield but Burleson didnt read Abraham and Pettigrew's position and Lions get a big loss.

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LBs
Palmer looked bad in coverage, very unimpressed. I thought tulloch played well, but he appears to have regressed since last year. Levy has been playing very well, but suspect in coverage. They're blitzing him more, but they're dropping a DE back into coverage when they do far too often.


Palmer didnt play much bc the Lions were almost always in 5 or 6 DBs so there s no way to really grade his game. Tulloch played well late in the game but him and Levy were awful early in the game. Levy didnt play well in this one except the INT catch and return. It was a gift but we ve seen tons of players drop those balls. Levy was slightly better later in the game but didnt step it up the way Tulloch did. Levy is the 2nd best LB we have but Im still not convinced he s even an average NFL LB. Lions did blitz more than usual but that was mostly bc Fairley was out and Mosley/Bannan arent good passrushers + can only get Jones DT reps so often (Ansah is raw and Willie Young is erratic). Levy is not a good passrusher unless he comes in unblocked. Carson Palmer had no problems extending his winning drive, aided in part by Cunningham's blitz calls giving up easy slant plays. I saw one zone blitz where the end dropped into coverage but looked extremely uncomfortable. Lions asking personnel to do things they are not good at or not prepared to do...terrible

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DL
Suh was a beast, playing hard but clean. Cards tried chipping and cutting him regularly. Willie young the only DE to get consistent penetration. That's damn sad. Ansah looked lost and when he wasnt getting penetration, he would turn and run downfield. Never once did i see him try and get his arms up. They dropped into coverage with a LB blitz more than a couple times. Mosley, bannan, and idonijea looked bad. Did Jason jones do anything? I watched the replay of the tape and he was nonexistent.


Suh was a beast but he still plays undisciplined. He does a good job following a pulling guard lined up in front of him to a play but when he is the target of a trap play such as in this game - Suh does not play it appropriately. Rather than using a wrong arm technique to stop the guard in the hole and stuff the ballcarrier behind the blocker to allow a LB or pursuit to make the play Suh gambles. He runs upfield and tries to get to the ballcarrier. He puts himself at higher risk of getting trapped. He got away with it vs Arizona but against quicker or more powerful guards they are going to have an easy job pushing him in the direction of his own momentum upfield and leaving a huge hole behind. San Fran was the first team to expose this nearly two years ago and Suh has done nothing to change. Suh had a good game but continued mistakes such as that one indicate he s learned little to nothing and relies on his quickness and upper body strength with little passion for learning how to play the position the right way or improve his techniques. Fairley when he plays puts on a tape that any coach would love - he s a much more technically sound DT than Suh. Ansah is raw and I agree he looked lost - he can try to turn the corner with his speed as a passrusher and make plays in pursuit thats about it at this point. Mosley is not really worthy of being the 3rd DT in the Lions rotation thats why they shift Jones inside at times but that leaves a hole at DE. I like how Jones plays DE and I dont expect many sacks from him at that position, but he may get some from a DT spot. He does a better job holding the edge vs the run than our ends in recent years. Idonije hasnt made an impact yet except he looked like he did a poor job on the blocked FG as the outside blocker responsible for at least slowing the outside rush. Bannan is a good player but he may not be in condition to play a bigger role at this point as he wasnt on a team until about 2 weeks ago.

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Secondary
Mathis looked bad, not reading the ball well at all. He blew a play where he completely lost his man in the first half 2 min drill and came back with a huge PD where he had great coverage. Delmas and Quin looked bad. Even in the run game, they bit on the play action and logged up inside when runs were bounced outside. Not reading the QB worth a damn all game. Bentley was horrible in all aspects. Slay got completely lost on ellingtons td. He was 10 yards behind him when he caught the ball. Looked like confusion on slays behalf.


Mathis got massively lost in coverage one time and got away with it. Otherwise he s better than Slay. The game is just slightly too fast for Slay at this point. He s not picking up receiving options coming his way in zone coverage and isnt trusting his position and catch up speed to turn his head and make a play on the ball. Quinn was playing in the box as kind of a hybrid 3rd LB with coverage responsibilities. He ll make more downhill plays in the run game than Levy and is better in coverage than anyone we ve had at his spot. He did get lost in the shuffle in the run game at times but was still better than Levy. Bentley had a bad game, Arians did exactly as I predicted using motion and multiple formations to target Slay and later when Slay was "relieved" shift that back to Bentley. It worked.

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WRs
CJ looked good, as usual. Burleson looked good. Edwards looked good until he got hurt. Durham, please cut this guy, he can't ever get open.


I agree and I think Edwards is making progress, then again he got hurt barely halfway through and only had one catch. Him and Stafford seem to be connecting better than it seemed during the preseason when Edwards was the top receiver getting heightened attention. Durham has no business being on the roster let alone out there as much as he was. Burleson is kind of doing well, I mean he s holding onto the ball but without Stafford those passes arent being completed. Burleson is not creating space.

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Arizona's DBs were holding all the time. Grabbing arms and jerseys nonstop, it's effing ridiculous.


so were the lions DBs, game was called fairly

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OL
Reiff looked really good. Pulled a couple times and made huge blocks. Warford looked decent. Needs to improve his explosiveness on his run blocks. Gets beat by faster DTs. Hilliard looked far from good. He whiffed on a couple blocks and looked slow trying to block edge rushers. If he can't contain an old Abraham, how will he do against Wooten or Matthews?


Hilliard gives a great effort but in the pass game he puts his body on his guy and goes for a ride. Doesnt seem to anchor well. The Lions kept Arizona out of the 3-4 most of the game so we didnt see how they ll handle more confusing blitz packages since they were in 4 man line most of the time. Warford's doing fine but the Lions havent been as good blocking on the second level as they need to be with how many screens they want to be running. I didnt like the way Reiff was playing on the traps he was getting stuffed inside the hole by safeties at times and though they did get a big gainer on an off tackle play it was mostly bc Arizona was sending there OLB/DE way upfield. The Lions should ve taken advantage of that tendency way more often bc thats one of the easiest blocks in the world to make drop into a pass set and let the guy run himself out of the play.

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Akers
Getting hit by bethel on the first kick really appeared to mentally affect him all game. The guy is a pro bowler and that should have no impact, but it clearly did. Also, why did pettigrew simply not block bethel on those FG tries? WTF is his deal? It's like the guy just has lapses where he forgets what he's supposed to do during the game


Idonije on the blocked FG, not Pettigrew. 100% sure. Pettigrew had an inside gap rusher that he had to block when Bethel was on his side on the running into the kicker penalty play. Idonije did not have someone rush his inside gap on the blocked play, looked awful.


September 19th, 2013, 11:05 am
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Post Re: GAME DAY THREAD: Lions @ Cardinals
Losing drive breakdown:

Cardinals get the ball down 21-19 on the Arizona 39 yard line with 4:28 left and 2 timeouts, Fitzgerald standing on the sideline.

1st and 10 from 39: Draw play to Ellington: Suh crashes hard inside taking himself out of the play and gets pancaked while Jones works the tackle upfield also taking himself out of the play. Ashlee Palmer appears to have read the play appropriately but Suh/Jones have left a wide open hole and left the center untouched to block Palmer out of the play and the tackle blocking Jones lets Jones run upfield but turns downfield and also blocks Tulloch to leave Ellington free up the sideline until Quinn can finally come across the field to trip him up for a 1 yard gain. Classic case of the Lions scheme being used against them. Suh and Jones completely take themselves out of the play and while Tulloch and Palmer read the play appropriately the OL has set up in perfect position to keep them out of the play.

1st and 10 from Lions 45 with 3:48: Off tackle run to Mendenhall, Ansah squeezes inside without going upfield and a blitzing Delmas occupies a TE and a WR leaving little room to run while Tulloch reads and reacts instinctually to stuff it for no gain. By the time Tulloch has made contact, Deandre Levy, the OLB on the play side has barely moved. Blitz works in the Lions favor and Tulloch makes a great play.

2nd and 10 from the Lions 45 with 3:09: Out of a shotgun one back set, with the Lions running an inside stunt and again blitzing Delmas, Carson Palmer completes a slant to Floyd with Houston in man coverage and Tulloch vacating the middle to respect Mendenhall in the flat for an 11 yard gain. Houston in decent position but Floyd got a step on him with a stutter step move off the line.

1st and 10 from the Lions 34 with 2:30: 3 WR set with one RB and a TE. Lions showing blitz this time with Quinn again off the edge. Cards go for an inside run to Smith. Suh stuffs a double team inside and Quinn gets through with his blitz to get a hand on Smith who redirects into Willie Young and Suh for a 2 yard gain. Lions call 1st timeout with 2:23 to go.

2nd and 8 from the Lions 32: Lions showing 8 men in the box vs a 2 TE set with a wideout motioning inside. Carson Palmer goes deep down the sideline to Roberts with Mathis and Delmas in excellent position. incomplete.

3rd and 8 from the Lions 32 with 2:17: Arizona with 4 WR set, Lions showing man coverage with one deep safety, Quinn on the LOS in man and Tulloch only LB in coverage over the middle. Quinn gets drawn to cover back out of the backfield. Corners matched up, Roberts makes out and up route to easily separate from Bentley who catches up bc of Palmers bad throw but makes contact with a slowing down Roberts rather than turning to make a play on the ball. Ndamukong Suh only man on the line to give up his pass rush, perhaps was trying to maybe read Palmer and bat down a short pass but Palmer looks like he s eyeing a deep route from the get go. Not clear where Delmas was positioned on the play as the deep safety but likely shading over to opposite sideline to help Slay who was in solo man coverage vs Floyd. Appears as if Arians did a good job giving Palmer a situation where one of the young corners was going to be solo without help vs either Roberts or Floyd.

Cards punch it in from the goalline after an incomplete pass to win.

Essentially made two plays vs the Lions tendencies and one big win in a personnel advantage targetting an inexperienced unproven player.


Last edited by The Legend on September 19th, 2013, 1:43 pm, edited 1 time in total.



September 19th, 2013, 12:15 pm
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Post Re: GAME DAY THREAD: Lions @ Cardinals
Nonwinning final drive:

Lions take over at own 20 with 1:59 to go, two timeouts and down 21-25

1st and 10: Lions w 3 WRs, Pettigrew and Bell. ARI with 4 man front 1 LB and 6 DBs. Pettigrew draws Dansby and beats him on an intermediate out and makes a very good leaping catch for a 17 yard gain.

1st and 10 from the Lions 37 1:31 left: Same personnel. Though Burleson appears open for a 5 yard gain on the left sideline, Stafford feels some pressure though Reiff did handle his man and throws to a covered safety valve Bell at the LOS for an incomplete pass broken up by referree.

2nd and 10 from Lions 37 1:27 left: Similar personnel. Durham in game. Stafford goes to Johnson on a deeper slant/post. Peterson was in coverage in excellent position and Stafford makes a great throw but there is some contact and Peterson able to break up the play while just barely turning his head at last second to avoid PI call. Stafford does not see a WIDE open Kris Durham over the middle for a minumum 13 yard gain. Nate Burleson running a shorter slant appears to not be wide open but in better position for a 6-7 yard gain on the short left with a chance to get some yards after the catch depending on cleanliness of reception/accuracy of pass.

3rd and 10 from 37, 1:22: Cards show inside blitz LB and a safety, Pettigrew lined up off tackle. Safety bails out of blitz but CB blitz is also on, inside blitz picked up by Bell but Corner comes free. Stafford feels the pressure and completes to Burleson, the only WR open for a 6 yard gain on a curl type route. Lions use 2nd timeout

4th and 4 from 43, 1:15: Bell lined up in slot, Pettigrew on LOS effectively a 4 WR formation out of shotgun with a TE. HoneyBadger jams Burleson at line who maintains inside position for slant but unable to get to sticks or get necessary gain for yards after catch end up just over a yard short. Bell only other route that appeared to maybe be open for a short window but he was running towards sideline on out route and also short of sticks, would ve had to make a relatively tough catch for a RB and turn it upfield for a yard or two. No deep routes on the play for the Lions. Pettigrew jammed by the LB over the middle and not open. Johnson blanketed by Peterson but also not enough spacing over Pettigrew's route and line to try to force CJ a pass. Cards rushed 5 only and Stafford had more time but without a deeper route unlikely for anything to open up, play was designed to get it out quick. perhaps he couldve ran for the yardage but with short over the middle routes probably wouldnt have gotten it that way either. The way Cards lined up formation and with Peterson lining up to take away inside route from Calvin, really wish they could ve adjusted on fly or at line to have Burleson run inside towards the LOS with Calvin fading toward the sideline, couldve opened one of them up. Instead it was Burleson s job to beat Mathieu and it didnt happen


September 19th, 2013, 12:48 pm
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Post Re: GAME DAY THREAD: Lions @ Cardinals
The Legend wrote:
Losing drive breakdown:


Excellent Breakdown. And on that 3rd and 8, If the Bentley plays the ball and not the man it ends up being 4th and 8 with a 49 yd field goal attempt (no guarantee) to take a 1 pt lead, allowing the Lions to plan for a FG instead of needed a TD.


September 19th, 2013, 1:38 pm
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Post Re: GAME DAY THREAD: Lions @ Cardinals
DJ-B wrote:
The Legend wrote:
Losing drive breakdown:


Excellent Breakdown. And on that 3rd and 8, If the Bentley plays the ball and not the man it ends up being 4th and 8 with a 49 yd field goal attempt (no guarantee) to take a 1 pt lead, allowing the Lions to plan for a FG instead of needed a TD.


That would have made it only that more maddening at the end... 8)

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September 19th, 2013, 4:47 pm
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