That’s the only word to describe it. In just over twenty four hours, the roof of the Metrodome collapsed, the Lions held the 25-point-per-game Packers offense to a field goal in a 7-3 victory, and Ford Field sold out of free tickets to the re-located Vikings/Giants game in just 90 minutes.
Turk McBride led the Lions with two sacks, as the Lions’ defensive line won the game almost by themselves. The Lions’ 190 team rushing yards outstripped their team passing yards by the length of a football field. Nearly as many Lions, 7, had at least one rushing attempt as had at least one reception, 8. Greg Jennings not only didn’t put the team on his back, his bobble was the difference between a 75-yard touchdown and an Amari Speivey interception. Drew Stanton, after an appalling game throwing the football, was flawless on the game-winning drive. It must be said: the Lions won as they have lost—improbably, incredibly, nerve-shreddingly, and with more than a touch of surreality.
Jim Schwartz has given the players the day off today, which is a fitting reward. Those hearty souls who waited outside in the freezing cold of the wee small hours were rewarded with tickets to tonight’s Vikings-Giants game—which the Lions’ staff has truly pulled out all the stops to accommodate. Kevin Seifert detailed the Lions’ efforts to make their division rivals feel at home, which includes stadium sounds, scoring their mascot Ragnar a Harley, and scrubbing off the Lions wordmark and logo from the turf, and painting the Vikings’ logos on the field instead.
I’m incredibly proud of Lions fans, and the Lions organization, for putting together this incredible effort. With just over a day’s notice, the Ford Field staff and the city of Detroit will give the nation a Vikings-Giants environment nearly indistinguishable from the one that had been scheduled for months. This is a tremendous achievement, one that should be worn as a badge of honor by Mr. Ford, Tom Lewand, everyone in the Lions organization, the people of Detroit, and all Lions fans everywhere.
If you're lucky enough to go, a list of acceptable TLiW modes of rooting:
- Wear Vikings gear and root Vikings. They're our NFC North neighbor, after all, and having them avenge the Giants loss would be nice. Besides, if we're replicating the real home field experience for them, why not be truly committed?
- Wear Lions gear and root for a good game. Hey, it’s a free NFL game in Detroit! Let’s just make it classy and memorable for everyone.
- Wear Lions gear and boo the hell out of the Vikings, because screw the Vikings.
Now, all that having been said . . . I can’t wait until they scrub that Vikings crap off our field. It’s making me itch.