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Lions-Cowboys final score: Defense can’t stop Dallas , lose on last-second FG, 26-24
The Detroit Lions
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got their fourth-quarter comeback from Matthew Stafford, but their defense couldn’t get the one stop they needed. The Lions dropped to 1-3 after allowing a last-minute field goal from the Cowboys, losing 26-23. Here’s the recap:First quarterThe Lions got things off to a hot start with a big 32-yard run from Kerryon Johnson on the first offensive play of the game. However, the drive quickly stalled after Matthew Stafford missed Luke Willson on a third-and-7 play. Dee Virgin nearly pinned the Cowboys inside their own 1-yard line on the punt, but his foot barely touched the goal line, setting up a touchback.The defense started the day much like they finished last week: stoutly. The Cowboys started with three straight runs, and the Lions held them a couple yards short on third-and-1. The Lions offense continued to move the ball on their side of the field, but, again, they stalled once they got onto Dallas’ side of the field. Even worse, the Lions appeared to have lost T.J. Lang, as he walked off the field under clear pain.UPDATE: T.J. Lang is out for the remainder of the game with a concussion. The Cowboys’ offense woke up on the next possession and connected on two big passing plays of over 30 yards. However, the Lions’ red zone defense stepped up big and Darius Slay made sure Dak Prescott wouldn’t be finding the end zone on this possession. 3-0 Cowboys.But this time the Lions would work themselves into Dallas territory and finish a drive. After methodically working their way to midfield, Matthew Stafford connected with Golden Tate, and the YAC King did the rest: 7-3 Lions.Second quarterDallas would quickly respond with a nice, methodical drive of their own. However, their insistence on targeting Darius Slay proved costly. Slay would break up three passes on the drive, including a third-and-3 play. That forced Dallas to settle for yet another field goal, and the Lions held onto the lead. 7-6 Lions.The Lions offense continued their game plan from the previous week: Long, sustained drives. Unfortunately, the red zone issues from Week 3 came with them, too. The Lions had to settle for another chip-shot field goal, extending their lead to four with just under three minutes left in the half. 10-6 Lions. Dallas wouldn’t be down for much longer. A few big plays moved them to midfield, and a controversial roughing the passer call moved them into field goal range. But the Cowboys weren’t interested in a field goal, on the very next play, Dallas executed a perfect screen for the score. 13-10 Cowboys.So it was up to Stafford to execute a two-minute drill to even things up (or take the lead at the half). Things were off to a good start after Stafford connected with Kenny Golladay for 15 yards, but after getting sacked on the very next play, the drive floundered. Detroit entered the half down three.Third quarterDallas had the ball to start the second half, and they continued to move the ball efficiently, but thanks to a handful of flags. Detroit was flagged three times for defensive holding as the Cowboys moved into Detroit territory. However, a penalty of their own drew them back, and Devon Kennard pushed the Cowboys out of field goal position, forcing an opening possession punt.But the Lions couldn’t do anything with it and quickly punted right back to Dallas. It continued to be the Ezekiel Elliott show for Dallas. A 41-yard run put Dallas quickly in the red zone, and a fourth-down conversion by Elliott put them first-and-goal. Blown coverage on first down made it easy for Dallas and suddenly they had a two-score lead. 20-10 Cowboys. After a couple of great catches from Golden Tate and Kenny Golladay, the Lions found themselves in Dallas territory to draw the game back to a single possession, as time expired in the third quarter.Fourth quarterTo start the final stanza, the Lions faced a key third-and-3, and Stafford found Golladay for 22-yards. It was red zone time again for the Lions offense, and this time they’d cash in. On the very first red zone play
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, Johnson scored his first career touchdown on a play in which he lowered his head from three yards out and bullied his way into the end zone. 20-17 Cowboys. It looked like the Cowboys were going to put this one away. Dak Prescott and Ezekiel Elliott drained a ton of time and gained a ton of yards... 15 plays, 85 yards and a whopping 8:24 off the clock. However, Detroit stiffened up in the red zone and forced a field goal, keeping it a one-score game. 23-17 CowboysMatthew Stafford and Golden Tate wasted little time in retaking the lead. First, a 35-yard strike got them out of a hole caused by a sack. Then Stafford found Tate for the score a few plays later.24-23 Lions.However, there was still plenty of time for Dallas to score and their offense had been rolling all day. The Lions nearly got the stop immediately, after Da’Shawn Hand got a strip sack, but Prescott picked up the ball and threw it away. A few plays later, he connected on a huge pass to Elliot with Jarrad Davis in coverage. Already in field goal range, the Cowboys just ran the clock and kicked at 38-yard field goal for the win. 26-23 Cowboys.With the loss, the Lions drop to 1-3 and fall further behind the Bears and Packers, both winners in Week 4. PregameIt’s gameday and for the Detroit Lions, it’s a great opportunity to prove some of their doubters wrong. In the NFL, it’s any given Sunday, so while last week’s win over the New England Patriots certainly spread hope across Detroit, it hasn’t put the previous two weeks completely in the rear view mirror. It’s one thing to play a single good game. It’s another to string a couple togethers. This week, they’re in Dallas to take on a 1-2 Cowboys team searching for answers. Confidence is at an all-time low, and skepticism for the entire Cowboy regime is at an all-time high. Is Jason Garrett the coach to get Dallas back to football relevancy? Is it time to move on from offensive coordinator Scott Linehan? Was Dak Prescott just a flash in the pan? There are a lot of questions in Dallas right now and not a lot of answers. So which team desperate to send a message will come out victorious in Week 4? Here’s how to catch Sunday afternoon’s game. Here’s how to watch Sunday’s game:Week 4: Lions at CowboysDate: Sunday, September 30, 2018Time: 1 p.m. ETLocation: AT&T Stadium—Dallas, TXTV: FOXWeek 4 TV map: Click hereAnnouncers: Kevin Burkhardt, Charles Davis, Pam OliverLocal Radio: WJR-AM News Talk 760Announcers: Dan Miller, Lomas Brown Online Streaming: FOX Sports GO2018 Detroit Lions predictions: Rookie of the Year As Monday night draws closer, our staff here is ready to get into the meat of our season predictions. If there was one positive thing to come from the Detroit Lions’ preseason, it was the play of their rookies. It’s still incredibly early, but the Lions have gotten positive returns on their first, second and fourth and fifth-round picks. That’s a bit relieving since there has been a lot of concern about Bob Quinn’s 2017 draft class. So keeping that in mind, the Pride of Detroit staff gave their picks for the 2018 Detroit Lions Rookie of the Year. Here are the results.Kellie RoweA predictable pick, Kerryon Johnson is poised to help reshape the Lions less-than-stellar rushing offense this season. The explosive rookie and former Auburn workhorse gave a commendable preseason performance, rushing 15 times for 68 yards for a 4.5 yard average.We don’t know exactly how the Lions plan to use Johnson, but it’s apparent he’ll be a vital component of this new-look running game. Though he’ll be fighting for touches, I’m excited to watch his development as the season progresses. Johnson has the opportunity to make a real difference on a team with the league’s worst running offense—nowhere to go but up, amirite? I expect Johnson will prove he was worth trading up for in April’s draft and that he’s deserving of the hype.Levi BlueI’m sure hoping it’s Kerryon Johnson. As Lions fan’s we’ve suffered the brutality of rushing (or lack thereof) on a weekly basis for years. This preseason, KJ put up 111 total yards on 20 touches. If he can expand on that kind of production into the regular season, our offense can finally get the juice in the backfield that we desperately need. There’s nothing wrong with optimism and I’m going to say it, Kerryon could have the type of year Alvin Kamara or Kareem Hunt had last season. The tools are there. Lastly, if you haven’t seen “Kerryon Johnson: Road to the Pros” get your ass over to YouTube right now. Here, I’ll help:Kerryon Johnson: Road to the Pros - Part 1Kerryon Johnson: Road to the Pros - Part 2Kerryon Johnson: Road to the Pros - Part 3Kerryon Johnson: Road to the Pros - Part 4Justin SimonGive me Ragnow. He’ll be a Day 1 starter and should help anchor the line for the next half decade. Kerryon Johnson could very well take this honor but it’s a crowded backfield and I’m more confident in Ragnow playing significant snaps. Kent Lee PlatteKerryon Johnson should be the rookie of the year. If forced to pick a different player, I’m going to go with Da’Shawn Hand. While first-round pick Frank Ragnow is the easier choice and one I feel will play very well to assist Kerryon Johnson to success
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, I think Hand is the guy that’s going to most outplay his draft position, and thus get an inordinate amount of hype for that play. Hand forced his way into the starting lineup and even pushed third-year supposed breakout candidate A’Shawn Robinson to backup status in just over a month. Johnson and Ragnow will play better, but Hand will contribute far more than expected, so I’m giving him the nod.Jerry MalloryI hate to pull a Grant Hill/Jason Kidd co-ROY deal here but I think Ragnow and Johnson will be attached at the hip figuratively and sometimes possibly literally. But I’ll give the slight edge to Frank based on his solid preseason.Kyle YostKerryon Johnson. The bar is pretty low for Lions running backs, so even a modest season from Johnson will look impressive. Odds are that LeGarrette Blount gets a decent amount of playing time early on, so Johnson’s season-long numbers may be a little subdued. However, the rookie will prove to be the real deal and should provide the closest thing to a balanced attack that the Detroit has ever seen under Matthew Stafford.Hamza BaccoucheFrank RagnowYou’re looking for Kerryon Johnson’s name, I know. While I am sold on Johnson, I’ve yet to be sold on the offensive line being capable of paving adequate running lanes for Johnson and I’ll believe it when I see it. Ragnow will be a big part of that, but I think he will be even more important in the passing game. Ragnow didn’t give up a pressure through his first two games and didn’t budge until he spent much of the game against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers matched up against Gerald McCoy, one of the best defensive tackles in the league. While a running game would be helpful, too much of Stafford’s time in the pocket is disrupted and defensive coordinators should be afraid of what Stafford can do if Ragnow and the rest of the line can give him a long, clean pocket to work with. John WhiticarFrank Ragnow.Notable defensive linemen in the NFC North:Kenny ClarkMike DanielsEverson GriffenAkiem HicksDanielle HunterLinval JosephKhalil MackSheldon RichardsonMuhammad WilkersonThe NFC North has some elite defenses, so Bob Quinn prioritized building an elite offense. The most important addition has been Frank Ragnow. Protecting Stafford is of utmost importance. While I also like the addition of Tyrell Crosby, Ragnow will step in immediately to bolster the offensive line. He was bullied by Gerald McCoy against Tampa Bay, but then again, most offensive linemen are. It was clear that the coaching staff was testing him, since he was moved from left to right guard for that game. Hopefully he learns from that matchup and is able to hold strong against talented defenders.Mansur ShaheenKerryon Johnson. Kerryon might not hit 1,000 yards, or even the 100-yard mark in a single game this season, but if he is an efficient runner than that is all that matters. He will share carries with the likes of Blount and Abdullah throughout the season, making it hard for him to put up volume stats. If he can average 5.0 yards per carry this season, though, then we will finally have the running game we have desperately needed to complement our air attack. He also gets a huge advantage in this category by being the only skill position player we drafted. Ryan MathewsFrank RagnowAfter spending like 150 words telling you how it will be easier to quantify Devon Kennard’s impact, I’m going to turn around today and tell you it’s going to be an offensive lineman, not a running back like Kerryon Johnson, who will be the Lions rookie of the year.Frank Ragnow will do so much for Detroit as he solidifies the interior of the Lions offensive line. He’s going to be a huge factor in keeping their offense on the field as both a pass protector and a run blocker, and anyone who can help keep the defense away from Matthew Stafford—and the Lions defense off the field—has the inside track to being one of the most valuable players on this team.Mike PaytonIt’s going to be Kerryon Johnson. I don’t think we yet realize how good Kerryon is, and I don’t think we’ll realize that for a few weeks after the season starts. Right now it appears the Lions will be going running back by committee, if you factor in how they played their running backs in the preseason. But Johnson will soon take the lead here. By the season’s end, I think the possibility of the Lions ending both the 100-yard and 1,000-yard rusher droughts s a very good possibility. Chris PerfettKerryon Johnson. Kid has a real chance to bring stability to the running game, maybe even establish it perchance!Jeremy ReismanI have a personal code that I will never predict the Lions to have a solid running game until I actually see it happen. I’m hopeful that Kerryon Johnson will be successful, but I am physically unable to imagine an efficient Lions running game that doesn’t involve Barry Sanders. So I’m going with the dark horse candidate: Da’Shawn Hand. The Lions have already shown a tremendous amount of faith in Hand, and if he can rise to the occasion, he could save Detroit’s defense from themselves. The 2018 Lions will only go as far as the defense lets them, and if Hand can be the versatile run-stuffer, gap filler he was drafted to be, the entire Lions team could outperform expectations this season.
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