A home game for the Lions turned more into a stadium full of fans for Calvin Johnson. Despite Detroit falling quickly and struggling all game to make it close, the Lions fans were far more enthralled in Megatron’s record setting night. In case you haven’t heard, Calvin Johnson broke the record for most receiving yards in a single season. More important for Falcons’ fans is that Atlanta sealed home field advantage throughout the entire NFC playoffs. Detroit on the other hand lost thier 7th straight game. It was a familiar sight for Lions’ fans. They outgained the Falcons 522-352, but every time they were close to scoring they fell flat in the red zone. The bend but not break defense of the Falcons was more than enough for the electric offense of the Falcons.
Matt Ryan was nearly perfect in this primetime showdown. He had only 7 incomplete passes while throwing for 4 touchdowns. He didn’t need the 443 yards that Stafford had, because his 279 were extremely efficient. The running game was very lackluster again, but that isn’t shocking. Detroit has a solid run defense and Michael Turner never seemed primed for a big game. The receivers were incredible though. Roddy White looked like he turned back the clock a couple of years. He showed off his trademark hands for some highlight worthy catches. All in all he had 8 snags for 153 yards and two touchdowns. Julio Jones took a backseat, but still impressed with 71 yards and a score of his own. When the Falcons passing game is this on fire, the running game doesn’t have to be stellar. However, we have all seen Ryan struggle in the playoffs, so it will be ideal for a running game to somehow develop in the next couple of weeks.
For the Falcons, they are still flying under the radar of the national media. Preseason favorites Green Bay and San Francisco are still lurking in the background and Seattle looks just about unstoppable right now. For now though, Atlanta is the king of the NFC and the team to beat.