The stuttering New England Patriots were stunned and left licking their wounds for a second successive week after losing 26-10 to the Detroit Lions.
After going down to the Jacksonville Jaguars in week two of the NFL, New England's flaws were exposed again on Sunday, including the lack of targets for veteran star quarterback Tom Brady.
Meanwhile, Detroit took one of their weakest areas and turned it into a reason to celebrate.
It was the first victory for the Lions, pushing them to 1-2 — a record the Patriots mirror.
An uncharacteristic outing for the Patriots … or is there a problem?
New England were a shadow of themselves. The Patriots were missing something, anything, and never found it.
Brady, who has been needing playmakers down the field, was without the newest addition to the Patriots' roster, Josh Gordon, and their lack of a deep threat showed as New England had their fewest first-half yards (70) since December 2014.
The offense that has dumped points on their opponents in recent years was shut out in both the first and fourth quarter.
The Patriots went three-and-out on three possessions until late in the second quarter when they netted their first points with a 36-yard field goal. Brady had a dismal performance, finishing with just 14-of-26 passing for only 133 yards and a single touchdown. His longest pass of the game: a 19-yard connection to tight end Rob Gronkowski.
They tried to make up for it on the ground, but rookie Sony Michel and company could not hit their stride either — something the Lions did not have a problem with, surprisingly.
It would be easy to write this game off as just a bad day for the Patriots, except they lost 31-20 to the Jaguars last week, making this the first time since December 2002 New England have suffered consecutive double-digit losses. That is cause for concern among Patriots fans, but maybe the addition of Gordon will help open up the offense.
The Lions ran, and ran well
Detroit improved one of their weakest components: the run game.
For the first time since their 'Thanksgiving Day' game in 2013, the Lions had a 100-yard rusher. Kerryon Johnson opened up the game for Detroit, who have not been able to get things going on the ground. Johnson rushed for 101 yards on 16 carries.
His efforts ended a 70-game drought without a 100-yard rusher, the longest by any team since the 1970 NFL/AFL merger.
Johnson's effectiveness — along with a little help from LeGarrette Blount (16 carries for 48 yards) — helped quarterback Matthew Stafford settle down and overcome third-quarter woes that have plagued the team the past two weeks.
Detroit made it through their roughest quarter
Entering Sunday night, the Lions had given up the most third-quarter points throughout the entire league.
They would need to hold off a newly tweaked Patriots squad that many thought would come out of half-time with some adjustments. However, New England put only seven points on the board in the third quarter and were again shut out in the fourth.
Lions head coach Matt Patricia – the former defensive co-ordinator in New England now in his first year at the helm in Detroit – seemed to have all the answers for Patriots counterpart Bill Belichick's game plan in their first meeting on opposite sidelines. It was just what the struggling Lions needed after back-to-back losses.
|Spalletti: No issue with Icardi watching Superclasico in Madrid|
|Klopp confirms 2013 talks with ´chatty´ Napoli president De Laurentiis|
|Sri Lanka spinner Dananjaya suspended due to illegal action|
|His reaction was just brilliant – Klopp praises Sterling for response to abuse|
|Gomez renewal a ´smart decision´ for both parties – Klopp|
|Magnificent Molinari named European Golfer of the Year|
|Barcelona best option for Frenkie de Jong, insists midfielder´s father|
|Gronkowski on Miami Miracle: ´Got to make that tackle´|
|Tottenham youngster Walker-Peters signs on until 2023|
|Juventus ´more of a family´ than Real Madrid - Ronaldo|
|Kingsley Coman contemplates retirement if injury nightmare continues|
|McVay ´sick´ over offensive failings as Rams coach takes blame for loss|
|Calleja axed as Villarreal coach|
|Kenyan Drake on Miami Miracle: I couldn´t let Gronk tackle me!|
|Ronaldo: I deserved Ballon d´Or, the numbers don´t lie|
|Rugby Australia to make Cheika decision this month|
|England defender Gomez signs new Liverpool deal|
|Ronaldo wants to see Messi follow him to Italy|
|Neymar happy to play in any position for PSG - Draxler|
|Paine insists he is ´fine´ after taking blow to finger|
|Ponzio: River players will be ´idolised´ for Libertadores success|
|Champions League permutations: How Inter, PSG and Liverpool can progress|
|Kohli: India were better and deserved to win|
|Bears shut down Goff, Rams|
|India survive dramatic finish against Australia|
|Klopp calls for electric Anfield atmosphere against Napoli|
|Saints clinch back-to-back NFC South titles, Bears trump Rams|
|Bucks improve to 2-0 against Raptors with win in Toronto|
|Black Caps include Patel for Sri Lanka Tests|
|Maidana: River want Real Madrid clash|
|Cowboys top Eagles in OT behind stellar Cooper display|
|AC Milan evaluating Fabregas signing – Leonardo|
|WATCH: Steelers´ chance at game-tying field goal slips away|
|Hayne will plead not guilty to charges, says lawyer|
|Boca boss Schelotto: The only thing I feel is sadness|
|Cardinals´ Fitzgerald makes NFL history with most receptions for one team|
|River Plate´s Copa Libertadores star Gonzalo Martinez confirms January departure|
|Klopp: I was never worried about Salah´s form|
|Packers QB Rodgers sets NFL record for most passes without an interception|
|World Cup bulking hampered Man United form – Lukaku|
|Leonardo rules out Ibrahimovic Milan return|
|Warriors´ Green to return against Timberwolves|
|I feel for him… we´ll make it work – Butler responds to Embiid´s frustration|
|Torino draw no missed opportunity for misfiring AC Milan, claims Gattuso|
|We´ll always be linked together forever - Wade reflects on playing with James before final match-up|
|O´Sullivan wins record seventh UK title|
|Chiefs secure playoff berth, Saints win NFC South|
|River Plate 3 Boca Juniors 1 (aet, 5-3 agg): Quintero and Martinez clinch Libertadores title in extr|
|WATCH: Chiefs QB Mahomes throws no-look pass|
|Dolphins defeat Patriots on miraculous final play|
|Kizzire eagle snatches QBE Shootout victory|
|AC Milan 0 Torino 0: Donnarumma shines, Cutrone misses late chance|
|Back to the drawing board for West Indies - Chase|
|Copa Libertadores: Messi and Griezmann among stars in Madrid for River-Boca Superclasico|
|Brady sets NFL record for most career TD passes|
|Copa Libertadores: Tevez named on Boca bench for Superclasico final|
|Premier League needs VAR, right now! - Benitez fumes over Dean´s decisions|
|McCall expects Itoje to fit for the Six Nations|
|Solari salutes Real Madrid character after ´ugly´ Huesca win|
|Berbatov defends under-fire Lukaku|
|Sarries crush Blues to maintain unbeaten start|
|Newcastle United 1 Wolves 2: Doherty punishes Yedlin red with late winner|
|Deeney jokes he´ll ´smash´ former Watford star Richarlison|
|Huesca 0 Real Madrid 1: Bale ends drought as Solari´s men edge to victory|
|Ponting: Umpires not looking at no-balls|
|Bale ends longest LaLiga goal drought|
|Porter backs Brees for MVP, Saints for Super Bowl|
|Verstappen eyeing 2019 title fight|
|Wall ´shouldn´t have played´ against Cavaliers after scoring just one point|
|Hazard: Man City the best team in the Premier League despite Chelsea win|