That's not to imply that the Lions didn't do enough to win their first ever game as a visitor to Washington, it's just saying that Washington inflicted just as much damage on themselves as Detroit did to prevent them from winning.
In the first two games, Washington's defense never gave them a chance, giving up too many points in the first halves to make up the deficits.
This time around, the game was competitive but late-game mistakes ultimately became the difference in another losing effort.
On the first drive of the fourth quarter with the game tied at 17, Robert Griffin III scrambled for 21 yards to the Detroit 30-yard-line, and on an attempt to give himself up and avoid a hit he dived forward, fumbling the football in the process.
Even though Griffin's knee's and elbow hit the ground before the ball came loose, the fact that he dived head-first as opposed to feet-first and no one touched him, made the play still live.
The Lions capitalized on the following possession by driving down the field for a field goal.
"He practices sliding," said Shanahan without placing a heavy-load of blame on his quarterback. "Not that he's a great slider but he's getting better. He didn't slide very much in college. He's gotten better at it in practice. He'll continue to get better as he does it."
"A lot of people would rather go feet first, other guys want to get the extra yards and go face first. Sometimes they feel a little bit more protected going head first. I tell Robert he can do it any way he wants to, he's just got to hold on to the football if he goes face first."
In the second quarter, RGIII had another turnover that appeared to be an errant throw.
He was being chased to the sideline on a roll-out, play-action pass but instead of throwing the ball away he threw a pass that was intercepted on the sideline.
But on Monday, Shanahan somewhat implied that it wasn't completely Griffin's fault, although he wouldn't say who's fault it was.
"That was not his fault. I was very upset during the game. I thought he kind of threw it haphazardly and it really was a great throw but it just didn't work out that way. I'm not going to go through the blame but as I said after the game, I thought it was just a mistake."
Maybe he thought one of his receivers should have came back to the ball, and if so, that wouldn't be the last mistake by a receiver.
Aldrick Robinson dropped what should have been a go-ahead, 57-yard touchdown pass from Griffin with just over nine minutes remaining in the game.
Shanahan didn't go in-depth about the play only referencing the situation when talking about re-gaining confidence for the season.
"You just work day-by-day and you gotta eliminate some of those mistakes. We talked about it after the game. All of a sudden you get a turnover, a touchdown pass, and all of a sudden you win the game. Everybody's excited, everybody's happy - Now you don't win the game. You go back and you look at every play in the game. That's just the nature and the difference of winning and losing. That's just the nature of the business."