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NOTEBOOK: Rudock steps up in fourth quarter

The Lions still have two more weeks of practice and two preseason games to decide who will be Matthew Stafford's backup this season. There's a lot of football to be played before a final decision is made, but third-year passer Jake Rudock had himself a nice showing in Friday night's 30-17 loss to the New York Giants .

Rudock was the second quarterback in the game after starter Matthew Stafford played three series to start it off.

He led the Lions into field goal range on his second series right before the end of the half. He gave way to Matt Cassel in the third quarter, but was reinserted in the fourth quarter. He led two scoring drives culminating with an 11-yard pass to wide receiver TJ Jones and then calling his own number on a 1-yard sneak.

"I mean it was just good to get us down the field," Rudock said of his performance. "With that said, it's unfortunate that we were short on that, obviously we didn't have enough points to go out there and win so we've just got to try and not get in that position."

Rudock finished with a passer rating of 100.8 after completing 23 of his 30 passes for 171 yards and those two scores. He delivered the ball accurately and on time, and moved the ball down the field.

He and Cassel are locked in a pretty good battle to see who becomes Stafford's backup this season. Will it be the veteran Cassel or the youngster Rudock?

They both have two more weeks to impress. Rudock did that Friday night.


One thing both head coach Matt Patricia and GM Bob Quinn have stressed this offseason is being strong upfront, especially up the middle.

For a second straight week, Detroit's defense was gashed for some big runs. The Giants averaged just 3.7 yards per attempt for the game, which isn't bad by Detroit's defense, but they recorded three touchdown runs of 10-plus yards (16, 11, 10), which didn't sit too well with Patricia after the game.

"We never want to let them run the ball in, so it's never going to be acceptable," he said.

Oakland rushed for 147 yards on 31 carries last week (4.7 average), including runs of 26, 19, 15 and 11 yards. The Lions have to start doing a better job of limiting those chunk run plays on defense.


A reporter asked Patricia after the game what he liked about Friday's performance from his team.

Patricia paused for a moment, and concluded that there wasn't much on his mind in the way of positives at that moment after a sloppy loss.

"I'd say for me right now, I'm not overly pleased with anything at the current moment," he said. "Maybe in a couple days here, when you ask that question, I'll find something out of the tape we can go there with."

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