8:15 p.m. ET
• DET head coach Matt Patricia devised an excellent game plan. He knew that NE lacks any offensive firepower outside of TE Rob Gronkowski, so he implemented a defensive game plan that simply took Gronkowski away, and the rest of the NE offensive personnel was overmatched. This game was won on the game plan, and the Lions executed it perfectly.
• Patricia also did an excellent job on the offensive game plan. He asked his QB Matt Stafford to play a disciplined, “take what they give you” game, and outside of one interception, he did a good job.
• The key series in this game came when NE closed to within 13-10. The Lions took possession on their own 25, and had to answer as the momentum was beginning to shift. The Lions stuck to their offensive game plan, and with the Patriots choosing to play two deep safeties much of the night, stayed patient running the ball and taking the check-down throws. The Lions ultimately scored to reestablish a two-possession lead.
• NE did a poor job of trying to at least help their lack of offensive personnel with some motion or shifts in any effort to create any mismatch, but it appeared as if NE knew this was not a good matchup for them facing their former DC in front of a large, loud home crowd in DET.
• NE simply lacks explosive personnel on both sides of the ball, and this falls at the feet of their HC Bill Belichick. No matter how well he might be able to scheme, he simply lacks athletic talent on the roster at the moment. This is a year where they will not be able to dominate teams; instead, if they win, the games will be close.