The Detroit Lions walked away with the 36-27 victory over the Washington Commanders on Sunday afternoon after stellar performances by several of their key players. The Lions were missing eight starters between their offense and defense but you could not tell from watching them. The offensive line consistently won at the point of attack, helping the Lions’ offense rack up 191 rushing yards. While there was plenty of success to go around for the Lions on Sunday, here are the main studs and duds of the week:
Aidan Hutchinson had the best game of his young career in game two, racking up three sacks in the first half. This may have been a premature statement but not many players will have a four-sack game to top it. He made a significant impact on this game, even playing through a limp in the second half, showing his grit. Last week Hutchinson was on the dud list but as I said then, I know he will turn it around. These are week-by-week evaluations and he turned it around in the biggest of ways. He tallied six tackles, one tackle for loss, six pressures, and three QB hits in addition to his three sacks on the day. His future is bright and I’m here for it.
RB D’Andre Swift:
D’Andre Swift, after missing some practices, only managed to get seven touches in this game. However, that was plenty for him to be a factor in the game and make this list. Swift has been one of, if not the best, running back in the NFL this season. In the seven touches, he managed to gain 87 yards and a touchdown which was almost a one-man play on his score because the ball was tipped at the line, he managed to catch it while falling down, got back up, and made three defenders miss on his way to the end zone. Swift also broke off a 50-yard run before being caught from behind, if his ankle was not bothering him I believe he would have turned that play into a score as well.
Amon-Ra St. Brown led the Lions in rushing and receiving yards on Sunday with over 170 yards in total offense. He also added two touchdowns to his long list of impressive stats. He had nine receptions, making him tied for an NFL all-time record for most consecutive games with 8+ receptions, with a chance to be the NFL’s lone all-time leader in this category next week. St. Brown has really come into his own over the last eight games of his career and will continue to improve as others around him get better. Defenses now have to choose to double cover St. Brown, deal with Swift out of the backfield, or Hockenson who has disappointed this year but we have all seen in the past is capable of being a game changer. When Jameson Williams comes back he will give the defense another person to think about leaving St. Brown a little more open or vice versa.
QB Jared Goff
Jared Goff is coming off a solid game, throwing for a season-high 256 yards and four touchdowns. Goff did miss a few throws on his own but you can not be mad at a four-touchdown game. He was also not helped at all by his teammates who once again struggled with drops. Goff could be, keep in mind I said could be, a dark horse MVP candidate if his receivers could catch the ball and he gets arguably his best weapon back in Jameson Williams. Dating back to last season, Goff has the third-best touchdown-to-interception ratio over the previous seven games.
T.J. Hockenson recorded only three catches for 26 yards and three more drops this week, giving him the team lead on the season. This is the final year of his contract and with other Tight Ends around the NFL having been paid this off-season, I do not believe he has put in the production through two games to warrant an extension. The Lions may just let him walk like they did Golladay last year unless he can get his act together and produce at a much higher level. He is capable of so much more than he has been showing.
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