|Last 3 Games||0-3||-7.2||0-3||1-2||18.7||6.0||310.7||(4.7)||3.0||25.0||7.3||354.0||(5.6)||1.0|
|Offense (All Games)||25.5||12.3||22.4||32:21||28-116||(4.1)||23-40||58.1%||286||(7.1)||68-402||(5.9)||(15.8)|
|Opponents Defensive Avg.||25.6||12.6||20.9||31:37||27-118||(4.3)||22-36||61.4%||243||(6.7)||64-361||(5.7)||(14.1)|
|Offense Road Games||22.3||11.9||19.4||29:03||25-89||(3.6)||21-38||54.7%||262||(6.9)||63-351||(5.6)||(15.8)|
|Defense (All Games)||24.1||11.6||18.1||28:09||24-95||(4)||21-36||59.0%||252||(7)||60-347||(5.8)||(14.4)|
|Opponents Offensive Avg.||24||11.6||20.2||30:06||26-111||(4.2)||22-36||61.4%||244||(6.8)||62-355||(5.7)||(14.8)|
|Defense Road Games||24.9||10.6||22.3||30:57||28-127||(4.6)||24-40||60.2%||277||(6.9)||68-404||(6)||(16.2)|
|Stats For (All Games)||1.3||1.0||2.3||-0.9||14-6||43.7%||1-0||35.7%||2-53||(24.1)||2-26||(10.7)||7-58|
|Opponents Avg. Stats Against||1||0.6||1.6||2||14-5||39.2%||1-1||53.4%||3-65||(22.8)||21-2||(10.6)||6-54|
|Stats For (Road Games)||0.6||0.9||1.4||-0.4||14-5||39.6%||1-0||30.0%||2-63||(26.1)||2-17||(7.6)||8-62|
|Stats Against (All Games)||0.9||0.4||1.3|| ||13-4||30.5%||1-1||75.0%||2-58||(27.3)||2-14||(7.1)||6-44|
|Opponents Avg. Stats For||1.1||0.6||1.7|| ||13-5||37.9%||1-0||51.2%||3-65||(22.9)||20-2||(10.7)||6-53|
|Stats Against (Road Games)||0.9||0.1||1.0|| ||14-5||35.4%||1-1||71.4%||2-41||(23.7)||2-12||(5)||6-44|
|Last 3 Games||1-2||+0.3||2-1||3-0||29.3||9.0||347.7||(5.9)||2.0||33.7||14.7||409.7||(5.8)||1.7|
|Offense (All Games)||25.1||12.2||19.3||28:32||27-127||(4.7)||20-34||59.5%||217||(6.3)||61-344||(5.6)||(13.7)|
|Opponents Defensive Avg.||24.2||11.8||20.2||30:11||27-117||(4.3)||22-35||61.2%||235||(6.7)||62-352||(5.6)||(14.5)|
|Offense Home Games||28.8||12.5||22.0||28:53||27-124||(4.6)||23-35||67.1%||230||(6.6)||62-353||(5.7)||(12.3)|
|Defense (All Games)||31.1||15.3||23.6||33:21||28-114||(4.1)||27-41||64.6%||294||(7.2)||69-408||(5.9)||(13.1)|
|Opponents Offensive Avg.||24.5||11.7||20.5||30:29||27-114||(4.2)||22-36||61.5%||248||(6.9)||63-362||(5.8)||(14.8)|
|Defense Home Games||31.2||16.8||23.8||33:19||29-137||(4.8)||25-38||65.8%||301||(7.8)||67-438||(6.5)||(14.1)|
|Stats For (All Games)||1.2||0.8||2.0||-0.7||14-5||36.9%||1-1||52.6%||4-106||(25.3)||1-17||(13.6)||4-45|
|Opponents Avg. Stats Against||1||0.6||1.6||2.1||14-5||38.0%||1-0||52.1%||3-63||(23)||19-2||(10.1)||6-51|
|Stats For (Home Games)||1.0||0.3||1.3||-0.3||13-6||43.0%||1-1||80.0%||4-80||(22)||1-10||(8.9)||4-38|
|Stats Against (All Games)||0.8||0.5||1.3|| ||14-6||44.9%||1-1||61.1%||3-73||(27.3)||2-21||(9.1)||6-63|
|Opponents Avg. Stats For||1.1||0.6||1.7|| ||13-5||39.2%||1-0||53.1%||3-62||(22.6)||23-2||(11)||6-54|
|Stats Against (Home Games)||0.7||0.3||1.0|| ||14-7||51.2%||2-1||70.0%||2-56||(25.8)||2-24||(12)||7-69|
|Average power rating of opponents played: DETROIT 19.2, MINNESOTA 20.4|
|12/29/2013||@ MINNESOTA|| || || || || || || || || || || || |
|11/24/2013||@ GREEN BAY||26-26||T||6||W||44.5||O||43-232||21-30-215||1||34-196||28-53-298||0|
|12/29/2013||DETROIT|| || || || || || || || || || || || |
|DETROIT: The running game figures to be an afterthought again for the NFL's most pass-happy team. Reggie Bush is the new No. 1 back, but he was brought in more for his receiving skills and ability in space. His carries will come working off the passing game and likely be a lot of delays and draws, and often out of the shotgun. Mikel Leshoure, a tentative plodder who was a disaster last season, will hopefully perform better in his second season back from a torn Achilles. Joique Bell has a chance to push Leshoure for playing time, but his strength is more in the passing game, making him the likely odd man out.
Expect a lot more of Matthew Stafford sitting back in shotgun with three and four receivers. Calvin Johnson is obviously the focal point, often working up the seam and breaking off when safeties sit deep. With no reliable No. 2 receiver, Brandon Pettigrew is Stafford's second option, working the middle of the field while Nate Burleson acts as a third receiver. Bush will have a big role in the screen game and figures to flex out to the slot at times. Ryan Broyles remains a question mark coming off a torn ACL, and Mike Thomas must prove he can make plays downfield. Leshoure figures to take the reps when they get down near the goal line, though Stafford runs the occasional sneak.
The Lions took a gamble on fifth overall pick DE Ezekiel Ansah and added newcomer DL Jason Jones from Seattle to bolster a weak pass rush (34 sacks, T-20th in NFL). Former Texans SS Glover Quin adds toughness to the secondary that is still searching for a serviceable No. 2 corner behind top CB Chris Houston. They did little else to improve their sagging defense that allowed 24+ points in each of their final eight games and had multiple takeaways just five times in 2012. Detroit has the 2nd-hardest NFL schedule in 2013.|
|MINNESOTA: The Vikings have adopted more of a versatile running scheme, mixing in a lot of man blocking with their usual zone stuff. Obviously, Adrian Peterson is the centerpiece of this offense, and after bringing him along somewhat slowly early last season, he'll be all-systems-go as a three-down workhorse this year. Toby Gerhart will occasionally spell him and would take a full workload if Peterson were to get hurt again.
This is a West Coast passing game that has Christian Ponder moving around a lot. In the past, their favorite play had been to roll Ponder out with Percy Harvin for some long hand-offs. They'd like rookie Cordarrelle Patterson to take that role of the departed Harvin. TE Kyle Rudolph will also inherit those looks, and they'll involve Peterson in the screen game frequently. Greg Jennings will move around a lot and should be their leading receiver. Jerome Simpson is a pure deep threat, while third receiver Jarius Wright will line up inside and out, but is better working downfield. Not surprisingly, the Vikings continued to ride Peterson in the red zone (59 carries inside 20-yd line last season), and they'll do the same this year. When they throw, it's usually off play-action with Rudolph.
The strength of this defense comes up front with 4-time All-Pro DE Jared Allen (117 career sacks) and 5-time All-Pro DT Kevin Williams (56.5 career sacks), plus first-round pick DT Sharrif Floyd and new DE Lawrence Jackson. The Vikings still have star SLB Chad Greenway (148 tackles, T-2nd in NFL) all over the field, but despite the defense's utter lack of playmakers, it added no significant free agents in the back seven. The subpar pass defense (244 YPG, 24th in NFL) got even weaker when it allowed top CB Antoine Winfield to sign elsewhere. CB Chris Cook and rookie CB Xavier Rhodes are a shaky starting duo. |
|~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ PA SPORTSTICKER PRO FOOTBALL PREVIEW (DETROIT-MINNESOTA) ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ |
(UPDATES with Peterson out)
*Lions-Vikings Preview* =======================
By KEVIN CHROUST STATS Writer
A month ago, the Detroit Lions were in control of the NFC North. They enter Week 17 with nothing more to play for than a .500 record.
After three straight losses to ensure their most recent late-season collapse, the Lions are ending 2013 with a consolation game Sunday as they help the Minnesota Vikings say goodbye to the Metrodome.
The Lions (7-8) have lost five of their last six, posting a minus-15 turnover differential in this stretch that has caused them to miss the playoffs for a second straight year.
"We put ourselves in a bad, bad situation," linebacker Stephen Tulloch said. "Unfortunately, we can't dig ourselves out of it now."
The Vikings (4-10-1) did themselves in by losing seven of their first eight.
"We realize that there is one week left in the fight," linebacker Chad Greenway said. "We need to get a win at home to put the Metrodome to sleep. We have to bring our best game."
Lions coach Jim Schwartz and Vikings coach Leslie Frazier now find themselves in similarly dubious situations, potentially coaching the last game for their respective teams.
"For our players, it's important that they focus on the task," Frazier said. "That's what I'm asking them to do, and I need to do the same thing. It's very, very important if you want to have a chance to win these games down the stretch that I stay focused on what's involved with leading our team, and I want them to follow. It's important I handle it the right way."
Matt Cassel will start at quarterback for the Vikings, closing out a season of near-weekly uncertainty at the position that included Christian Ponder and Josh Freeman.
Cassel fell to 2-3 as a starter this season with last Sunday's 42-14 loss at Cincinnati. He went 13 of 27 for 114 yards with a touchdown and three interceptions.
Adding to the game's irrelevance is the injury status of its two biggest stars, Vikings running back Adrian Peterson and Lions wide receiver Calvin Johnson.
Peterson will miss the game after running for 45 yards on 11 carries and missing most of the second half in Cincinnati, a week after sitting out with a sprained right foot.
That problem along with a lingering groin injury had limited Peterson in practice this week. He said Thursday his "mindset is to be out there" Sunday but acknowledged he felt uncomfortable last week against the Bengals, and the team ruled him out Saturday.
Peterson seemed less concerned with his health than he was with his coach's status.
"I'm definitely not an individual that's looking for dramatic change like that," Peterson said. "It will hurt if he leaves."
Johnson, meanwhile, is dealing with knee and ankle issues. He was a game-time decision in last week's 23-20 overtime loss to the New York Giants and was held to three catches for 43 yards.
"His knee was bothering him and his ankle was a problem," Schwartz said. "We were trying to use him in the red zone and on third downs, but he wasn't close to 100 percent."
Matthew Stafford's struggles have been a big part of the Lions' downfall as he's thrown 11 of his 19 interceptions in the last five weeks. He's one shy of matching his career high of 20 picks from his rookie season.
The Lions opened the season with a 34-24 home win over the Vikings, but they won't be upset to see the Metrodome torn down. Detroit has lost 14 of its last 15 trips to Minnesota, with its lone win since 1997 coming in 2011.
While Sunday's result may be inconsequential in the standings, team decisions will certainly begin to fall into place after it's over.
"I've been in situations where teams didn't fulfill expectations and everyone was back and gave the team another opportunity," Lions receiver Nate Burleson told the team's official website. "They kept that same team together who had so much promise.
"Then I was with teams who were blown up and it was like a complete (overhaul) of individuals. I guess you expect the worst and hope for the best in situations like this. At the end of the day, it is what it is."
What Burleson isn't expecting is for the Lions to lie down in their season finale.
"It would look even worse to people that still are following this team if we went to Minnesota and mailed it in," he said.
|Last Updated: 9/20/2014 11:06:35 PM EST|