The Green Bay Packers are coming to town on Turkey Day and it looks like the only turkey on the field will be Lions back-up quarterback Daunte Culpepper. Matthew Stafford, who was injured in the 2nd to last play in Sundays victory over the Browns, will likely not play. The Lions should start Drew Stanton in place of Culpepper. We already know that Daunte is not the answer, even for one game. Put Stanton in and let’s see if he’s worth keeping on as the #2 guy for the future. Culpepper has no business starting a game for the Lions. Demote him to the bottom of the barrel and let’s move forward. Ok, enough ranting.
Thanksgiving Day in Detroit. A tradition that dates back to 1934 when the Lions were defeated by the Bears 19-16. In recent years, there has been a call to take the annual game away from Detroit (this year is no exception). Dallas has been playing the afternoon game since 1966 and in 2006 they instituted a late game which begins at 8pm where they rotate teams every season. The early game with Detroit is a tradition that should not be taken away from the team or it’s fans. The Lions are 35-32-2 on Thanksgiving Day and I certainly hope the win column grows in the future and that the Lions continue to host the Thanksgiving Classic.
The week 12 match-up with Green Bay should be interesting. The Packers are hurting on defense with both Al Harris and Aaron Kampman out for the rest of the season. They do have a potent offense, though and will likely light up Detroit’s secondary at will. With Stafford listed as doubtful and Calvin as questionable, I can’t see the Lions pulling off a victory with Culpepper at the helm. The only way they have a chance is to play Stanton, a complete unknown to opposing defenses, and see what he can do. Kevin Smith and Brandon Pettigrew will really need to play well for the Lions to get some points on the board. Something else that would really help would be if Bryant Johnson could actually catch and hold on to a pass from anyone. Enough with the drops, dude. They’re paying you the big bucks to make plays, not look like a chicken-crap scrub who’d rather drop the ball than take a hit. Man up, Bryant and catch the dang ball.
The injury report is long again this week. Here’s what’s been reported as of Wednesday evening.
S Kalvin Pearson, S Ko Simpson, LB Ernie Sims
QB Matthew Stafford, DE Dewayne White
WR Calvin Johnson, S Louis Delmas, T Daniel Loper
DT Joe Cohen, LB Zack Follett, DT Grady Jackson, RB Kevin Smith, LB Jordon Dizon
CB Al Harris, LB Aaron Kampman
T/G Allen Barbe, RB Ahman Green,
LB Brandon Chillar, T Chad Clifton, RB Ryan Grant, DE Cullen Jenkins, DE Johnny Jolly, FB John Kuhn, G Josh Sitton, C Scott Wells, CB Charles Woodson
It would be very nice to see our injury list shrink, especially CJ, Stafford and Delmas. This game will likely be a blow out by the Packers but you never know, that’s why they play the games.
Vegas has the odds at 11 in favor of Green Bay with the O/U at 47.5 points. I would stay away from the books this weekend. Hard one to call with Culpepper being under center. I’d have to say Pack 35, Lions 17.
Have a very happy Thanksgiving to all those who celebrate. Have fun stuffing your faces, I know I will. Just remember what your celebrating and giving thanks for (no, not a Lions victory, though that wouldn’t hurt).
As usual, the best place for game time conversation and play-by-play game thread is over at SBNation’s Detroit Lions blog .