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Detroit Lions Week 5 report card: Big plays vs. Packers earn big grades The Detroit Lions defeated the Green Bay Packers 31-23 on Sunday Authentic Graham Glasgow Jersey , and it was a fairly solid effort all around. Here’s how the individual units graded out in Week 5. Quarterback: B+I know statistically this wasn’t one of Matthew Stafford’s best games, but aside from one overthrow to Golden Tate deep and a couple of errant throws on screen plays that were likely to fail anyways, I thought he was extremely good on Sunday.Stafford was victimized by two penalties that erased huge plays. He also had a couple completions to Marvin Jones Jr. deleted due to offensive pass interference. But Stafford was extremely patient all game. He took what the Packers defense gave him, he recognized when plays were broken and took smart sacks instead of forcing bad passes. And, most importantly, he made big plays when he needed to. Two red zone touchdowns on three passes and an absolute dime on third-and-11 to Golden Tate, sealing the game for Detroit. Quarterbacks are paid to make big plays in big moments, and Stafford lived up to his big contract on Sunday.Running backs: A-Kerryon Johnson continued to be Kerryon Johnson, averaging 5.8 yards per carry on 12 rushes, and adding a couple catches, as well. LeGarrette Blount proved his short-yardage value with a couple of scores and a key third-down conversion. Theo Riddick continues to be the Lions’ best pass blocker—a fact that goes largely unnoticed by many. The only reason I didn’t give this unit a straight A is because Theo and Stafford are still struggling to find each other in the passing game.Wide receivers: BKenny Golladay is going to be a star, if he isn’t already. This guy is making highlight-reel catches on a weekly basis, but it’s his consistent route running and strong hands that are going to eventually find this guy in a Pro Bowl or two. Golden Tate had a quietly efficient game, too, picking up 42 yards on five catches, and his YAC abilities earned Detroit an extra 15 yards when he picked up a facemask penalty too.Marvin Jones Jr., however Youth Sam Martin Jersey , had a rough outing. He only had one catch on the day, and the aforementioned pass interference penalties put the Lions in a rough spot. Tight ends: CNot much to see here. Luke Willson is still invisible. Levine Toilolo had a bad drop. It would sure be nice to have a third-down option from this group, but it’s beyond clear that’s not going to happen this season.Offensive line: B+Stafford took three sacks on the day, but he often had a ton of time to throw the ball against the Packers. This unit seems to have finally settled in, even without veteran guard T.J. Lang. We give LeGarrette Blount a lot of credit for those short-yardage plays, but if it weren’t for the men up front, he never reaches the end zone in the first place. Also, Frank Ragnow’s spike is right there up with Gronk’s:Defensive line: C+This is a tough grade to give out because Da’Shawn Hand and Romeo Okwara forced two turnovers that quite possibly won the game for the Lions. However, for the rest of the game, the defensive line wasn’t creating much push or clogging running lanes. Aaron Rodgers had all day to throw at times, and Green Bay still averaged 5.6 yards per carry from their top two running backs.You take the good, you take the bad, you take them both and there you have: the Lions defensive line.Linebackers: BI don’t want to jump to conclusions here, but this was a solid day from the entire linebacking unit. Jarrad Davis shook off an early missed tackle or two, and was solid in pass coverage for the second game in a row. He had two passes defended and a quarterback hit. Christian Jones had a somewhat quiet game, but he did notch a tackle for loss. Devon Kennard had yet another sack. Jalen Reeves-Maybin was really the only guy I saw consistently struggle out there.There’s still a lot of room for this unit to improve, but they’re continuing to take steps in the right direction.Secondary: C-This was a tale of two halves. In the first half http://www.lionsauthorizedshops.com/authentic-darius-slay-jersey , the secondary was responsible for Aaron Rodgers holding onto the ball for forever and eventually either getting sacked or throwing the ball away. They deserve a ton of credit for holding Green Bay to those early field goal attempts.However, the second half was a disaster. Davante Adams had Darius Slay’s number all game. Jamal Agnew struggled before his injury, and once Teez Tabor was out from the game, Cre’Von LeBlanc was clearly overwhelmed in his first bit of gametime this year. I’d love to give the Lions defense the benefit of the doubt, especially considering all the injuries in the secondary, but the Packers were equally beat up at receiver. Of course, Aaron Rodgers is going to get his no matter who he’s throwing to, but the secondary very nearly gave the game back to the Packers, so I can’t in good faith give them better than a C-.Special teams: BThe special teams looked good, but mostly because the Packers special teams unit was sooooooooo bad. Credit to Charles Washington for pushing the Packers defender into the punt early, a play he apparently practiced earlier in the week. The Lions also expertly pinned the Packers inside their 5-yard line at the end of the game, essentially ending any chance of Rodgers Devil Magic. But the Lions gave up another long kick return that was only negated by a penalty on the backside of the play. I’m still terrified of this team’s kick coverage unit, so please just kick it out of the endzone for the rest of eternity. Coaching: AThe Lions never truly let the foot off the gas in this game, and it’s really the reason the Lions came out victorious. Experienced Lions fans knew a 24-0 lead was not the end of the game, and the Lions played like it. They may have only scored once more the rest of the game, but Jim Bob Cooter’s aggressiveness helped earn valuable first downs to run out the clock.Also, credit to Matt Patricia for a challenge that may have very well saved the game for the Lions. The Lions were up 11 and Aaron Rodgers just completed a 32-yard bomb to Adams that landed him at the Lions’ 1-yard line. They were about to make it a three or four point game. Jamal Agnew was injured. Darius Slay was injured. The Lions were about to lose this game. But Patricia challenged the play Tavon Wilson Jersey , and it was clearly incomplete. From there, the Packers only moved backwards, and Mason Crosby missed yet another field goal. That’s a huge seven or eight point swing at the very end of the game, which is absolutely HUGE. There is no doubt the New York Giants have the talent at the skill positions to be a success on offense.It starts with two-time Super Bowl MVP Eli Manning at quarterback and extends to three-time Pro Bowl receiver Odell Beckham Jr. and No. 2 overall draft pick Saquon Barkley at halfback. Sprinkle in receiver Sterling Shepard and second-year tight end Evan Engram and there is plenty of explosiveness for new coach Pat Shurmur's squad to put up some points.The question mark is the revamped offensive line, which can best be described as five players trying to form a cohesive unit — basically a new group.Left tackle Nate Solder was signed as a free agent after spending seven seasons taking care of Tom Brady's blind side for the Patriots. The signing forced 2015 first-round draft choice Ereck Flowers to move from left tackle to the right side. Left guard Will Hernandez was drafted in the second round in April. Right guard Patrick Omameh was signed as a free agent, while Jon Halapio is transitioning from guard to center."Hey, we're going to go as far as that line will block for us," Shurmur said Monday after the Giants practiced for Friday's night annual preseason game against the Jets at MetLife Stadium.The line saw limited action in the preseason games against the Cleveland Browns and Detroit Lions. It sprung Barkley for a 43-yard run on the opening play from scrimmage against the Browns to set up a field goal. New York put together a 17-play, 79-yard drive on the second series against the Lions that halfback Wayne Gallman capped with an 8-yard touchdown reception from Davis Webb.Some of the line play has been good. Some has not, with Manning under pressure in the first game, and the running game struggling in the second."We are all aware of the job that's expected of us, and we're all ready to step up to the plate and take on that challenge," said Omameh, who is playing for his fourth team. "It's just a matter of us continuing to build and improve and be where we want to be when the season hits."Shurmur has changed some things in the locker room to help. All the linemen have their lockers in the same area. Last year, the line was divided on two sides of the room, with one group in a corner and the others in the middle of the room.Hernandez, who brings an edge to the line Authentic Matt Prater Jersey , understands things are not going to be perfect from the start."For me, it's a we-have-to-do-this-now mentality," he said. "I think we all have that mentality. We don't have a year to two to get good or to start doing well. We have to do this now. That's our mentality. We work at it every day, to make sure by the time we roll up to the first game, we're ready to go."Halapio, who didn't get into the lineup at guard until the final six games last season, said practicing with the Lions for three days last week helped the line work on its communication. He says it's harder to predict when it will all come together."It's a process,' he said. "We don't to play the whole entire preseason game, so I can't say there is a timetable. You improve from the prior week. We did that with Detroit compared to the Cleveland Browns. That's what we are looking for."Outside linebacker/defensive end Olivier Vernon has been impressed with how the linemen have bonded."That translates well on the field when it comes down to it," Vernon said. "I think their attitude is one of the things that I've noticed, especially going against them in practice and since OTAs. They got depth in that group, too, as well. They have a lot of guys that are working. They're working, they're building that chemistry. That's one thing you like to see in the offensive line group."
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