The Detroit Lions have now won their third game in a row, beating the New York Giants 31-18. This is the Lions second-straight road win, and second road win period with Dan Campbell as their head coach.
This was clearly the best performance from the Lions so far this season. Their three straight wins and potential turning point of the season come after the firing of defensive backs coach Aubrey Pleasant.
Here are my takeaways from today’s game:
Defense Holds Up
The Lions defense came out hot and proved their last two showings weren’t a fluke. It’s clear they have finally found some rhythm and are on the right track of progression. They were able to control a “beast” of a running back, Saquon Barkley, but they still had a tough time controlling the legs and the arm of Giants quarterback Daniel Jones.
The star of the day for the defense has to be Alim McNeill. He picked up three quarterback hits, three TFL’s for 10 yards, and a sack for a loss of eight yards. It was hands down the best game of his career.
Aidan Hutchinson ended Daniel Jones’ record of 154 passes thrown without an interception. Hutchinson now has two interceptions under his belt, making him the first defensive lineman to record two interceptions in their rookie season for Detroit. Kerby Joseph also picked off a pass thrown by Jones for his third career interception.
Also, noteworthy was John Cominsky. A replay during the Fox 2 broadcast showed he was able to get a finger or two on the missed Giants field goal. He also recorded a sack to end the first half.
Jared Goff did a great job leading the offense to this victory. He had a couple rough drives, but overall his game management was great.
Jamaal Williams, the obvious star on this offense, had a phenomenal game. He recorded 17 carries for 64 yards and three touchdowns. He now has 12 rushing touchdowns this season and is consistently proving he is RB1. He also made some history today.
D’Andre Swift had a rather rough game today. He’s not the same back that played in the beginning of the season before his injuries. He’s been fully back to practice for two weeks now speculating that his injuries aren’t as much of a factor. Swift had five carries for just 20 yards and a touchdown, and also added three receptions for 12 yards on the day.
Justin Jackson is another player that had a great game. He tallied nine carries for 66 yards and added a reception for a pickup of 11 yards. Jackson has been progressing and is making his case to earn more touches.
Lions Future Concerns
Jeff Okudah was taken out of the game today and entered into concussion protocol. With the Lions playing on Thursday next week, there’s a concern there’s not enough time to get through all five phases of the protocol in order for him to play. While there’s no exact timetable for a player to return to play, it’s highly unlikely a player diagnosed with ataxia would be able to play on Thursday night. There has been no update on what the diagnosis for Okudah was, however, he did tweet out right after it happened saying “I’m Good.”
Up Next for the Lions
The Lions have a quick turnaround this week as they play in their traditional Thanksgiving game. They will host the Buffalo Bills at Ford Field on Thursday.
Maddy Miller – Detroit Lions Beat Reporter
On Twitter: @madelynvmiller
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(AP Photo/John Munson)