WEEK IN REVIEW: Reassuring moments in preseason loss to Raiders

Posted Aug 17, 2014

Recap all the Lions news this week with the Week in Review.

The Lions played their first road game of the preseason in Oakland Friday night.

Despite eventually falling to the Raiders late in the fourth quarter, there were many positives to take away from the game including the starting offense.

Being without his favorite weapon didn't stop quarterback Matthew Stafford from finishing 9-of-10 passing for 88 yards with two touchdown passes and no interceptions for a final passer rating of 142.9.

“They’ve been working hard at it, and I think it shows,” head coach Jim Caldwell said in a WXYZ interview. “Matthew threw the ball around well. He did a good job mixing things up, getting us into the right run looks and things of that nature.

“But you know, we still have a long way to go.”

Another bright spot for the offense was the play of the receivers.

Many of the guys fighting for a spot on the roster behind Calvin Johnson and Golden Tate stepped up with big plays making the competition even tighter.

Running back Theo Riddick also stood out, catching a screen pass from quarterback Dan Orlovsky in the third quarter and turning it into a 36-yard gain.

Riddick has been receiving a lot of praise from teammates and coaches throughout training camp and was finally able to back it up with a solid showing.

In the end, though, the Lions came up short with penalties being a major culprit in the loss.

The team was flagged 11 times for 74 yards total, a sharp increase from last week's five for 32 yards.

“They make the biggest difference, I think,” Caldwell “When you look at all the other categories, you probably look and say we were playing pretty well.

“The big problem was extending drives with penalties. Any time you do that, you could be playing really well and it sort of takes away from it. It is kind of unforced errors – so, we have to do a better job in that area. We have to coach it better and we have to play better.”

Should the increase in penalties be a concern? Mike O'Hara tackles that question and many more in his postgame burning questions column.

The Lions activated defensive end Ziggy Ansah from the PUP list Tuesday afternoon.

Ansah made his return to practice during a special under the lights night practice.

“You all have been waiting a long time to talk to me,” Ansah told media members after the practice. “It feels good to be back.

“Just as long as you all have been waiting to talk to me, I’ve been waiting just as much to get back on the field with my teammates.”

He did not play against Oakland but is expected to see time in one of the remaining preseason games.


Several Lions participated in the ice bucket challenge this week to help raise awareness for ALS.

Stafford was the latest to support the cause, meeting his ice bucket Saturday after practice.

Watch Stafford's video below:

Click the links to see the other ice bucket participants:


  • Golden Tate checks in with a blog entry on making his first catch as a Lion. Watch his first touchdown as a Lion here.
  • The Lions held a high-pressure kicking competition drill during practice Wednesday. Find out what it entailed here.
  • Second-year tight end Joe Fauria is putting the work in to be a better rounded player in 2014.
  • Hitting Johnny Football? No big deal for rookie defensive end Larry Webster.