Week 1 of the NFL season kicked off yesterday and The Lions lost their season opener to the 49ers 41-33. There were some things to like from both teams but also some very worrying signs of what to expect for both fanbases.
The 49ers defense looked rough late in that game in which they allowed 16 points in the 4th quarter points and was letting the Lions have a chance to snatch a victory away from them. Their pass rush was there a little bit but Nick Bosa got shut down almost all game by Rookie LT Penei Sewell who hasn’t played a full game in 2 years as he took last season off due to COVID. The secondary got beat a few times but didn’t pay the consequences they should have due to overthrows. Their run defense wasn’t great against Detroit and when they have to face the top teams’ Jimmy G will be forced to throw more which is the biggest question mark on the offensive side of the ball.
Kyle Shannahan could be the greatest run-play designer in the history of football. He makes runningbacks have career games almost every game and I’m pretty sure he could go pick up Eddie Lacy and have him rush for close to 1000 yards because he’s that damn good.
While the 49ers defense looked rough late in the game they came up big before halftime picking off Jared Goff and returning it for 6.
Detroit Lions Observations
Jared Goff is check-down charlie on too many plays costing the team conversions on 3rd down. All game it was either his first read or check-down and that ultimately hurt the offense all game long. Goff was inaccurate all over the place, overthrowing, underthrowing, and getting his wideouts killed all game long. The Box score looked good for Goff but the game tape is really really bad.
The run defense was very similar to last season which means complete garbage. Pair that with the secondary giving up some big plays it was a nightmare of a game for Detroit on defense.
First and foremost the teams never gave up and that is a testament to the type of culture Dan Campbell and his staff is building in Detroit and could mean brighter days ahead for Detroit. Rookie LT Penei Sewell had a fantastic game going up against Nick Bosa most of the game and almost eliminating him from the game. Bosa got so frustrated he ended up lining up over the RT later in the game. The biggest impact Sewell made early on was in the run game giving the team a much-needed bulldozer to run behind and they did early on. The run game was something Detroit hasn’t seen since Barry was the RB and with this offensive line, they should have one for the foreseeable future.
The game was entertaining in the end but these teams have some improvement to make. For the 49ers their defense isn’t looking like an elite unit they had when former defensive coordinator Robert Saleh was there. If they figure out that defense you can kiss the playoffs goodbye with that division they have to go through. For Detroit, this is a rebuild obviously but you can’t go down 41-17 and put yourself in that situation again. Goff is the QB for this year but for him to have a shot to be the QB of the future, this check down charlie and overthrowing walk-in TD’s has to stop here. These teams have very different goals for this season but both looked really bad in areas that could leave them in the exact same spot come season’s end.