Without two timely turnovers, the Lions would likely be down by a big margin after one half at the Oakland Raiders.
The Raiders lead 10-6 at halftime after scoring on a 56-yard field goal as time expired.
The Lions had just 91 yards on offense in the first half compared to 247 for the Raiders.
“We need to play better,” head coach Jim Schwartz on WXYZ-TV. “We missed an opportunity in the red zone on both sides.”
The Lions allowed a touchdown on fourth and one when Darren McFadden’s second effort propelled him into the end zone. The call was initially ruled a fumble and Lions recovery, but the referees reversed the call and said McFadden broke the plane with the ball before it came loose.
The Lions forced two turnovers, interceptions by defensive end Willie Young and linebacker Stephen Tulloch, but they scored zero points off the turnovers. Young’s interception gave the Lions the ball on the Oakland 7, but they failed to reach the end zone on four straight plays.
As if the Lions weren’t disappointed enough in the results, they have a few potential injuries to worry about. Quarerback Matthew Stafford hurt his non-throwing hand on a third down play in the second quarter. He has it in a brace and taped up and is unlikely to return.
“He got his hand banged, but I think he’s OK,” Schwartz told WXYZ.
Cornerbacks Chris Houston and Bill Bentley also left the game with injuries and are unlikely to return.
Running back Mikel Leshoure’s debut is likely over. He had five carries for one yard in the first half and a reception for six yards. He ran well, but didn’t find many holes.
Here are some individual halftime stats:
Matthew Stafford: 8-10, 68 yards
Shaun Hill: 2-9, 16 yards
Mikel Leshoure: 5 carries, 1 yard; 1 catch, 6 yards
Tony Scheffler: 2 catches, 26 yards
Brandon Pettigrew: 3 catches, 24 yards
Nate Burleson: 3 catches, 21 yards; 1 carry, 7 yards
Calvin Johnson: 1 catch, 7 yards