GAME IN REVIEW: Lions close out the 2013 season with a 14-13 loss at Minnesota

Posted Dec 30, 2013

After a strong start, the Lions finish the season with a 7-9 record

The way playoff contention ended for the Lions last week at Ford Field, Sunday's game at Minnesota made for a somwhat-eery atmosphere.

Last week's loss put an abrupt halt on having a tangible next step to play for and -- with one game remaining -- disconnected the final game of the regular season from the previous 15.

Add the fact that the Lions were without multiple starters lost to injury -- Calvin Johnson, Brandon Pettigrew, LaAdrian Waddle to name a few -- and the fact that this was the final game ever to be played at the Metrodome and this game felt a lot different than Vikings-Lions games of recent years.

"It was difficult," said head coach Jim Schwartz following the Lions' 14-13 loss. "It’s not just Calvin that wasn’t out there. Obviously, Pettigrew was not out there.

"We were mixing and matching a lot of different personnel groups with offensive linemen out there trying to take some of our tight end snaps, wide receivers playing a lot of different positions. We had some wide receivers going in and out of the game with some injuries."

It certainly wasn't the way the Lions wanted to finish the season, both with the loss of the game and the 1-6 record to close out the season.

"There are a whole lot of things we can point to, but ... it’s been hard," said veteran guard Rob Sims. "This is the NFL, this is how stuff can go sometimes. It’s unfortunate and we just have to learn from it."