Defensive tackle Damon Harrison Sr. posted on Twitter Sunday night, taking the blame for the Lions blowing an 18-point fourth quarter lead and eventually tying the Arizona Cardinals 27-27 in the season opener.
When asked about the tweet Monday, Harrison wanted to clear the air a little bit.
“I wasn’t my usual productive self,” he said. “That’s what I meant by dominated. They didn’t do anything to take me out of my game or physically dominate me. Anytime I don’t have the production I’m used to having then I feel like I let the team down. I think dominated was a bad choice of words.”
With an 18-point lead, the Lions knew Arizona was going to turn almost exclusively to their passing game in the fourth quarter. Harrison isn’t known for his pass rush. He’s a run stuffer who takes up blocks, and those weren’t the sets the Lions were running with a big lead in the fourth quarter.
Cardinals rookie quarterback Kyler Murray said after the game he thought Detroit’s front got tired in the fourth quarter.
Harrison played just 27 of the defense’s 89 snaps overall, which was the second fewest on the line.
“We had an 18-point lead and had our defensive guys on the field to try and preserve the lead,” Harrison said. “It wasn’t a situation where I was tired. I played in 26 snaps. In that situation, the offense isn’t typically going to run the ball, so that’s why you didn’t see much of me in the fourth quarter.”
Harrison said he thought the mistakes made defensively by Detroit in the fourth quarter were mental, and it’s up to every player on that side of the ball to lock in this week and take a long look at everything they did in the fourth quarter of Sunday’s game, where they could have done better. Those are the plays they have to focus on the most this week.
Look for Harrison, who finished with one tackle and two defended passes against the Cardinals, to have a bigger impact next week when the Chargers roll into Ford Field for the Lions' home opener.