For the second week in a row, there will be a Johnson versus Peterson showdown. The difference is Lions wide receiver Calvin Johnson (aka “Megatron”) will matched up against against Cardinal defensive back Patrick Peterson. Even with Peterson acting as Megatron’s shadow, Detroit will win 34-24.
Today the Michigan Gnome and I are trying to do something different. We’re writing the story, like a blog, while the game is in progress. We’ve already given you the outcome – a Lions victory – and we’re even going to give you the halftime score: Detroit 24, Arizona 17.
Now let the game begin as we enjoy the Detroit Lions versus the Arizona Cardinals.
We went halfway through the first quarter before Megatron caught a pass, but it was a big first down catch. Running back Reggie Bush was one of the Gnome’s “Sleeper” picks for week 2 and he has already been gaining some valuable yards during the Lions’ second offensive drive.
Well, Detroit kicker David Akers proves he can kick both wide left and wide right. Thanks to a “running into the kicker” penalty he got two shots at kicking a field goal and missed both of them. No score with 3:26 left in the first quarter.
Synopsis – Both teams have moved the ball on offense and both teams have been penalized at critical times. The dependency on Reggie Bush continues for the Lions.
Arizona is winning the field position battle. They start this drive on their own 47-yard-line. The Cardinals pass receivers have been able to get space and are picking apart the Lions secondary. Jay Feely knows how to spilt the uprights. Arizona 3, Detroit 0.
Wide receiver Calvin Johnson catches a pass from Matthew Stafford and sprints 72 yards for a touchdown. Stafford has looked great throwing the football and taking advantage of coverage mismatches. Detroit 7, Arizona 3.
The absence of injured defensive tackle Nick Fairley is making it virtually impossible to pressure Arizona quarterback Carson Palmer. He leads the Cardinals down the field and throws a 36-yard touchdown pass to running back Andre Ellington. The Lions blew it and had no one covering Ellington. Arizona 10, Detroit 7.
After yet another penalty, the Lions manage to start on the 4-yard line and march 96 yards down the field to take the lead. Matthew Stafford throws a 3-yard touchdown pass to Megatron. Detroit 14, Arizona 10.
Synopsis - Despite some breakdowns on defense and penalties, Detroit goes into halftime with a 4-point lead.
It’s halftime and a good time to run through our predictions for today’s game.
"Hometown Hero" – Patrick Peterson cannot cover Calvin Johnson without some help. Megatron didn’t score a touchdown in week 1, but we projected in our national article that he would have at least one touchdown and 17 points in fantasy football this week.
"Surprise and Delight" – With Arizona dedicated to containing Johnson, Reggie Bush continues to catch a lot of passes. Bush should come close to 100 yards receiving and 100 yards rushing for the second week in a row.
The other surprise we highlighted in the national fantasy football article is the Detroit Lions defense and special teams are one of the “Sleeper” picks in week 2.
"Hometown Zero" - It is tight end Brandon Pettigrew. Pettigrew had trouble catching the ball in week 1 and another tight end, rookie Joseph Fauria, ended up with a touchdown catch.
Arizona gets the ball five times in the 3rd quarter. They sandwich two field goals around an interception run back for a touchdown by the Lions DeAndre Levy. The quarter ends with Arizona moving the ball. Detroit 21, Arizona 16.
Synopsis - Detroit is unable to do anything on offense and Arizona is moving the ball and putting points on the board. The Lions may have outscored the Cards, 7-6, in the quarter, but the momentum has shifted to Arizona.
Arizona kicks a field goal at the beginning of the 4th quarter. Detroit 21, Arizona 19.
The Lions drive down to the Cardinals' 29-yard line and attempt a field goal. The kick is blocked, but Arizona is unable to capitalize after the turnover.
Reggie Bush is on the sidelines due to an injury and the Lions offense is unable to sustain a drive. The fantasy football stats are looking great fo rDetroit's skilled players, but the Cardinals are executing a game plan that is beating the Lions on both sides of the football.
A pass interference call against the Lions' Bill Bentley and a 1-yard touchdown run by Rashard Mendenhall give Arizona the lead. Detroit fails to move the ball on their last drive of the game. Arizona wins, 25-21.
Synopsis - The Lions lose because they cannot do the following tasks:
- kick a field goal. (David Akers was 0 for 3.)
- get the critical yardage needed for first downs.
- move the ball with one of their stars (Reggie Bush) out of the game.
- play solid defense with one of their stars (Nick Fairley) unable to play.