The first Monday Night Football matchup of the season featured two of the more baffling teams in the NFL. The Lions, with an absurd amount of weapons, were in first place of the NFC North after Week 10 last season. Then they promptly went ahead and lost six of their last seven games, missing out on the playoffs, thanks in part to the Giants.
The Giants were just a big ol' dysfunctional bunch in 2013, though they did finish 7-3 in their last ten games. A lot has been made about New York's brand-new offense under offensive coordinator Ben McAdoo, but it didn't show up as the Lions cruised to a 35-14 win Monday.
1. Calvin Johnson is, well, Calvin Johnson. The man had 131 yards and two touchdowns in the first half. Then he went ahead and finished with 164 total yards. It's games like this where it's so blatantly obvious that Johnson is head and shoulders above any other receiver in the NFL.
With even more weapons in the Lions' offense -- including versatile wide receiver Golden Tate, who had six catches for 93 yards -- Johnson is likely going to keep doing his thing, making us all wonder if he comes from this planet (he doesn't). Matthew Stafford, who finished 22-of-32 for 346 yards and two scores (while adding a rushing TD), is going to like playing in this updated offense.
2. The Giants' new offense imploded. New York seemed to begin to figure things out in the second quarter. But, in what has become typical Giants fashion, Manning threw two interceptions in the second half, though they were mostly because of confusion within the offense's own ranks.
Remember when there was talk of Eli Manning completing 70 percent of his passes in the revamped offense? Well that thought needs to be put on hold for now -- and maybe forever. That seemingly insane notion might actually be more of a possibility, though, if Manning and his receivers could ever get on the same page.
This ... isn't going to do it:
Manning completed 18 of 33 passes for 163 yards and a touchdown as New York's offense was completely out of sync all night, save for a couple drives. The Giants put it together enough to cut the lead to 27-14 early in the fourth, but the defense promptly let the Lions go down the field for a score to put the game away.
3. Could the Lions be for real? It's obviously way too early to tell, especially with a win against a Giants team going through some serious growing pains. But the defensive line put pressure on Manning all night long and the offense is likely going to be as high-powered as we imagine it to be.
And even when the Giants were within striking distance, the Lions answered with a 12-play drive, 80-yard drive to seal the win. Then they stuffed the Giants on a 4th-and-1 attempt. Maybe things will finally be different in Detroit.
Defensive end Jason Pierre-Paul left in the first half to get X-rays on an apparent neck injury, but returned in the second quarter.
Safety Glover Quin, who had an interception, left early in the fourth quarter with cramps in his calves but returned to the game.