The fans got their money’s worth in the second half. The Lions kicked to the Cardinals in the second half and two plays later, Kurt Warner made his first big
mistake, throwing and INT to Keith Smith. It took just three plays for Detroit to capitalize on the mistake and go up by 8 when Stafford sprinted through a gaping
hole in the middle for a 6 yard TD run. 21-13 Lions.
Arizona’s quick strike offense bounced right back as Warner hit Fitzgerald for an 80 yard play that took them down to the one. That one yard would turn out to
be a l-o-n-g one though, as the Cards couldn’t stuff it in on three plays and settled for the 18 yard field goal. 21-16 Lions.
On the next possession, Matthew Stafford threw an errant pass, got sacked and finally capped it off with an INT to Bryant McFadden, who returned it to the
Lions’ 1. Could the Lions hold them again at the goal line? No. One play later, Wells dragged three guys into the endzone and suddenly Detroit was down 23-21.
The Lions wasted no time getting the lead back, however, as Jason Hanson kicked a 31 yard field goal on the very next drive. Lions up 24-23.
Down just a point, Arizona went to their ground game and on third and one, Beanie Wells spun away from one defender, dipped a shoulder and outran Julian
Peterson to the corner en route to a 40 yard TD run. The Cards went back on top, 30-24.
The Lions opened the fourth quarter with a 6 play, 80 yard drive that saw Dennis Northcutt snag a lob into the left corner for a TD. 31-30 Lions.
With just over 5 minutes remaining, Arizona got back on the field and after Warner threw a pass while beyond the line of scrimmage, the Cards were faced with
3rd and 15. With their backs against the wall, the Cardinals turned to Anquan Boldin, who bailed them out with a beautiful catch right at the sideline and a run of
84 yards for the go-ahead score. Arizona retook the lead, 37-31.
The Lions drove 40 yards but stalled on their next possession and were forced to punt. Arizona went just three plays and punted after Dewayne White sacked
Warner on third down. One last drive for Detroit and they would need to go 61 yards. Detroit started off running the ball. There was plenty of time and they
needed to settle down. On the fifth play, Stafford was sacked. Calvin Johnson bailed out the Lions on the next play however, and his 20 yard catch would help
set up Stafford’s lob to the right corner to Bryant Johnson. The score came with just :30 seconds left in the game and put Detroit up 38-37.
The game would end that way as the Cardinals failed to convert on a fourth and long. Matthew Stafford was named player of the game, but it was Calvin
Johnson on offense and Dewayne White on defense that came up with the critical plays when needed.
DOPHIN26's LIONS FRANCHISE: Playoff Game vs Cardinals
DETROIT LIONS: 38
ARIZONA CARDINALS: 37
M. STAFFORD: 17 of 27, 304 yards, 3 TD, 1 INT + 6 runs, 22 yards, 1 TD
K. Warner: 12 of 19, 326 yards, 2 TD, 1 INT
K. SMITH: 16 runs, 72 yards, 1 TD + 1 rec, 3 yards
M. MORRIS: 5 runs, 20 yards, 1 TD + 1 rec, 6 yards
B. Wells: 23 runs, 131 yards, 2 TD + 1 rec, 12 yards
B. JOHNSON: 7 rec, 85 yards, 1 TD
C. JOHNSON: 4 rec, 127 yards, 1 TD
D. NORTHCUTT: 2 rec, 49 yards, 1 TD
B. PETTIGREW: 2 rec, 34 yards
L. Fitzgerald: 6 rec, 137 yards
A. Boldin: 3 rec, 159 yards, 2 TDs
E. Doucet: 1 rec, 17 yards
DeWayne White: 4 sacks
Aaron Brown: 3 KR, 94 yards, 31.3 avg. (48 long)
Next up: at Philadelphia
LIONS: 12-5 (Divisional Champions)
|DETROIT KNOCKS OFF THE CARDINALS IN THRILLER!
|2009 DIVISIONAL PLAYOFF ROUND:
The air at Ford Field was simply electric today as the Lions prepared to host their first
playoff game since 1997 and the first ever at the new field. As the players warmed up,
fans noticed something, or more to the point, someone, missing. Calvin Johnson was
dressed, but not participating in warm-ups. The word came down that he had a touch of
the flu and would be a game-time call.
Detroit got the ball first and went 3 and out but a roughing the punter call gave them new
life and the Lions used the 15 yard break to travel the rest of the way for their first TD, an
8 yard plunge through the middle by Maurice Morris. 7-0 Lions.
The Cardinals, fresh off their 45-13 devastation of the Seahawks, wasted no time
showing what makes them one of the most exciting offenses to watch. Kurt Warner
through a quick slant to Anquan Boldin, who slipped through double coverage and raced
78 yards for the score. 7-7 tie. Arizona added a long field goal before the end of the first
to make it a 10-7 game.
In the second, a third and short near the Lions 23 yard line turned into 4th and short when
Beanie Wells was stuffed by C. Darby, who played a really good first half. The Cards
settled for the 40 yard field goal from Neil Rackers and it was 13-7 Cardinals.
Right before the end of the half, the Lions brought Calvin Johnson into the game and he
became an instant hit with a 45 yard catch in the back of the endzone. The score came
with just :32 seconds left in the half and the Lions went in with the 14-13 halftime lead.
Cardinals' running back Beanie Wells gets up-ended
early in the game.