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Week 17 Game Recap: Detroit Lions 21, Green Bay Packers 31
What you need to know
The Detroit Lions became the first team in NFL history to go 0-16 with poor defense and ill timed bad play offensively. Although the Lions didn't go out without a fight. QB Dan Orlovsky connected on two passing scores to WR Calvin Johnson from nine and 14 yards out to bring Detroit back and tie the game at 14 in the third quarter, before the Lions defense allowed 17 fourth quarter points, and giving the offense virtually no chance at coming back against the Packers.
Detroit's lone score in the fourth quarter came on a nine yard Kevin Smith run that cut the lead to three, but Green Bay answered with a 71 yard touchdown that put the game out of reach for the Lions.
|Green Bay Packers|
The Packers took advantage of poor Detroit defense in the first half, where DeShawn Wynn scored on a 73 yard run to give Green Bay a 7-0 lead. QB Aaron Rodgers then connected with TE Jermichael Finley on a three yard touchdown pass to give the Packers a 14-0 lead. Detroit came back, behind two Calvin Johnson scores, to tie the game at 14, before the Packers offense exploded for 17 fourth quarter points.
K Mason Crosby opened the fourth quarter with a 36 yard field goal, and Rodgers hit RB John Kuhn on a five yard scoring pass for the Packers second score of the quarter. Detroit answered again, behind a Kevin Smith touchdown run, but their comeback attempt was laid to rest when Rodgers hit WR Donald Driver on a 71 yard score to give Green Bay a 31-21 lead that would hold up for the rest of the game.
What you ought to know
|QB Dan Orlovsky, Pass: 22 - 42 - 225 - 2 TD / 2 INT|
Orlovsky was up and down against the Packers and finished 22 of 42 for 225 yards, two touchdowns and two interceptions. Both of his touchdown passes came on connections with WR Calvin Johnson from nine and 14 yards out, but his two turnovers were costly and Orlovsky couldn't get enough going offensively to keep pace with a productive Green Bay offense. Orlovsky was only sacked once, but while the Lions were just five of 17 on third downs, they converted four of five fourth down attempts.
|RB Kevin Smith, Rush: 28 - 92 - 1, Rec: 3 - 7 - 0 (5 targets)|
Kevin Smith ran the ball well against the Packers and finished with 28 carries for 92 yards and a score on the ground, and added three receptions for seven yards on five targets in the passing game.
|WR Calvin Johnson, Rec: 9 - 102 - 2 (17 targets)|
Johnson was targeted a team high 17 times and responded with nine receptions for 102 yards and touchdowns from nine and 14 yards out. He was targeted on four third down plays and two fourth down attempts.
|WR John Standeford, Rec: 3 - 82 - 0 (5 targets)|
Standeford continued to make plays for the Lions as he finished with three receptions for 82 yards on five targets. Nearly all of his targets came on long pass plays downfield, and Standeford has made the most of it for a few weeks in a row now. Clearly he is taking advantage of single coverage with Calvin Johnson on the other side of the field drawing all sorts of coverage.
|TE John Owens, Rec: 1 - 2 - 0 (1 targets)|
Owens caught the only pass thrown to him for a two yard gain.
|PK Jason Hanson 0 - 0 FG, 3 - 3 XP, 3 points|
Hanson did not attempt a field goal and had three extra points to finish with three points.
|DET Rush Defense|
The Lions were shredded by the Green Bay rushing attack, which racked up 211 yards on 27 attempts, for a 7.8 ypc average that included a 73 yard rushing score. They allowed both Packer running backs to eclipse the 100 yard rushing mark and gave up eight rushing first downs.
LBs Ernie Sims and Paris Lenon each finished with five solo tackles and two assists to lead the Lions.
|DET Pass Defense|
Unfortunately for Detroit, they were also unable to stop the Green Bay passing game, which totaled 273 net passing yards and three scores. They allowed five of 12 on third down conversions and 11 passing first downs. The big difference in the game though was the three scores allowed through the air, the last of which nearly killed any comeback chances the Lions had in Green Bay.
DB Kalvin Pearson registered nine solo tackles and one assist and DB Leigh Bodden finished with six solos and one assist to lead the secondary.
|QB Aaron Rodgers, Pass: 21 - 31 - 308 - 3 TD / 0 INT, Rush: 1 - -1 - 0|
Aaron Rodgers capped off his first season as a starter with a big game against the Lions. Rodgers completed 21 of 31 passes for 308 yards, three touchdowns and zero interceptions. His first score came on a three yard pass to TE Jermichael Finley and Rodgers followed that up with a five yard scoring pass to RB John Kuhn. Rodgers hit WR Donald Driver on a 71 yard scoring strike on a nice double move for his third score of the game that extended the Packer lead to ten. His only rush went for a one yard loss and Rodgers did have a fumble, but the ball was recovered by Green Bay.
|RB Ryan Grant, Rush: 19 - 106 - 0, Rec: 3 - 23 - 0 (3 targets)|
Grant had a solid rushing day for the Packers with 19 carries for 106 yards and added three receptions for 23 yards on three targets in the passing game. While Grant failed to get in the end zone and lost a fumble, he did have an 80 yard touchdown run called back and had another productive rushing day to cap off an improved second half of the year after his slow start.
|RB DeShawn Wynn, Rush: 7 - 106 - 1, Rec: 1 - 16 - 0 (1 targets)|
DeShawn Wynn contributed in a big way for the Green Bay run game as he opened scoring for the game with a 73 yard touchdown run in the first quarter to give the Packers a 7-0 lead. For the game, Wynn finished with seven rushes for 106 yards and added a 16 yard reception on his only target of the game.
|WR Donald Driver, Rec: 6 - 111 - 1 (6 targets)|
Driver caught all six passes thrown his way for 111 yards that included a 71 yard touchdown reception. He was targeted on one third down and one fourth down play and one of his receptions resulted in a first down.
|WR Greg Jennings, Rec: 5 - 101 - 0 (10 targets)|
Jennings led the Packers in targets with ten, and finished with five receptions for 101 yards. While he was held out of the end zone, Jennings made big plays down field like he has all year long. He was targeted twice on third downs, and three of his catches resulted in Green Bay first downs.
|TE Jermichael Finley, Rec: 2 - 29 - 1 (4 targets)|
Finley was targeted four times and finished with two receptions for 29 yards that included a three yard touchdown reception.
|PK Mason Crosby 1 - 2 FG, 4 - 4 XP, 7 points|
Crosby missed a 69 yard field goal attempt as time expired in the first half, but hit his second attempt from 36 yards out and added four extra points to finish with seven points in the game.
|GB Rush Defense|
The Packers played well against the run, and while they allowed one rushing score, they held the Lions to 96 rushing yards on 29 attempts, for a 3.3 ypc average, gave up just four rushing first downs and a long run of just 11 yards for the game.
DL Aaron Kampman finished with six solo tackles and A.J. Hawk added four solo tackles and one assist to lead the Packers.
|GB Pass Defense|
While the Packers allowed just 220 net passing yards and had two interceptions, they did give up two passing scores, 13 passing first downs, had just one sack, and allowed a few big pass plays downfield. Luckily for Green Bay, the Lions passing offense doesn't contain more weapons to exploit their weak coverage.
DBs Nick Collins and Charles Woodson each came down with picks for the Packers, and DB Al Harris finished with a team high eight solo tackles, many of which came after Harris allowed completions downfield.