Tue, 19 Jan 2021

NOTEBOOK: Lions have to turn the page quickly to Houston

Detroit Lions
23 Nov 2020, 19:25 GMT+10

Tim Twentyman

Detroit doesn't have time to lament their defeat at the hands of the Carolina Panthers or sulk about their current injury situation. In just four days, Detroit be between the white lines again at Ford Field for their annual Thanksgiving Day Game against Houston in front of a national audience.

"It's really important to have a short memory on this one, win or loss, and go out there and prepare for a team in Houston that got a big win (Sunday) and is an ultra-talented team," said Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford, who threw for just 178 yards and no touchdowns in Detroit's 20-0 loss in Carolina Sunday.

"We have to go out there in short order here on Thursday and play better. I know we'll be motivated to. I know I will. I know guys are itching to get out there and go make some plays and get that bad taste out of our mouth."

Detroit failed to score 20 points for the first time this season, and it's the first time since Oct. 18 of 2009 against Green Bay they were shut out.

In comes Houston Thursday, an unfamiliar opponent from the AFC, coming off a 27-20 win over New England. Houston's won two of their last three.

Maybe the quick turnaround is good for this Lions team. Having to turn the page quickly will allow them not to dwell on this one.

BIG PLAY CALLED BACK

The one explosive play the Lions had offensively Sunday was a creative one from offensive coordinator Darrell Bevell. Stafford pitched the ball to running back Kerryon Johnson going right, who stopped and lateraled it back to Stafford. Stafford then heaved a 51-yard touchdown to wide receiver Marvin Jones Jr. in double coverage.

Detroit was back in the game 14-7, right? Wrong. Detroit was flagged for an illegal formation after Jones lined up on the line of scrimmage, giving them too many on the line.

"We were obviously trying to get something going there, had a good play that we were working on here for a while," Patricia said. "Just didn't get it correctly put in position. I have to do a better job of making sure that we have the details handled in that situation."

LOCKER ROOM

Detroit dropped to 4-6 on the season with a rough outing all around in Carolina. Things aren't moving in the right direction, and Patricia was asked after the game if he's concerned about potentially losing the locker room if they don't get things corrected quickly.

"We have really good guys here. We have guys who are fighting every day and working really hard," Patricia said. "That's the one thing - I just love this locker room. These guys are strong; they want to win. They're trying to compete. They're trying to do everything right.

"That's really the best part for me, is that when you get into things like this, you get into the meeting rooms, get in the classrooms and you get to just coaching and teaching, and the guys that you see how much they want to try to be successful. That's the joy of coaching. Those are the fun parts."

Losing isn't fun for anyone, and it's getting to a point in the season where the Lions can't afford too many more losses if they want to play meaningful games in December.

EXTRA POINT

T.J. Hockenson caught four passes for 68 yards, which is his sixth game of the season with at least 50 receiving yards, tied for the third most a Lions tight end has produced in a single season.

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