Lions Take Advantage Of Injury-depleted Colts


Published on August 14 2017 6:15 am
Last Updated on August 14 2017 6:16 am


Jake Rudock showed the Detroit Lions he could fill in for Matthew Stafford -- if needed.

The Indianapolis Colts, meanwhile, are still looking for an answer behind Andrew Luck.

Rudock took advantage of the injury-depleted Colts by throwing two touchdown passes to Kenny Golladay, driving the Lions to a short field goal and leading them to a 24-10 victory in the preseason opener on Sunday.

"You can see the difference between last year and this year at this time," Lions coach Jim Caldwell said. "He has a better grasp of things around him. He's in command."

The second-year quarterback played most of the first 2 1/2 quarters and wound up 13 of 21 for 142 yards. Stafford played one series, going 2 of 3 for 36 yards and left after throwing an interception.

All the Lions needed against the injury-depleted Colts was Rudock's 23-yard TD strike to Golladay in the first quarter.

But Rudock also threw a 15-yarder to Golladay in the second and set up Matt Prater for a 28-yard field goal to make it 17-3 at the half. Detroit closed out its scoring with a 15-yard TD pass from Brad Kaaya to Dontez Ford.

With Luck still on the physically unable to perform list following offseason surgery on a partially torn labrum in his throwing shoulder, the Colts sputtered.

Indy finished with 230 total yards -- 90 on its final drive -- and 14 first downs. Their only points came from Adam Vinatieri's 42-yard field goal in the first half and a 1-yard TD plunge from Troymaine Pope as time ran out.

Seahawks 48, Chargers 17

Philip Rivers' sharp throw found Antonio Gates in the middle of the end zone, and StubHub Center shook with cheers from fans who were thrilled to see this familiar teamwork in a brand-new setting.

Although the rest of this preseason opener belonged to the Seattle Seahawks, at least the Los Angeles Chargers opened their new home with a classic San Diego connection.

Rivers threw a 5-yard scoring pass to Gates on the opening drive of the Chargers' first preseason game since relocation, but the Seahawks' backups otherwise dominated a 48-17 victory Sunday night.

The Chargers had 21,054 fans in their tidy new home for the first game of a three-year residency at 27,000-seat StubHub Center. The team moved 111 miles north into a stadium built for soccer, yet providing an undeniably intimate NFL experience for fans.

"The atmosphere was great," Gates said. "I really wasn't expecting a full house. I assumed that Seattle would bring their fans, and we would have some Los Angeles fans that would be there to support us. I was more anxious to see what we were about as a team."

Rivers and his first-team offense were excellent, marching 75 yards in 13 plays capped by Gates' TD catch. Although many things are changing for the Chargers this season in LA, they've still got Rivers and Gates going into their 14th year as teammates.

"You're talking about countless hours and hard work and practicing with anticipation of certain looks," Gates said. "The balance we had that first drive, it was great to get off to the right start."

The rest of the night was more impressive for Seattle. The Chargers' revamped defense clearly has work to do under new coordinator Gus Bradley after giving up 459 yards to the Seahawks, whose reserves mostly got off to a stellar start.

"Really good first night for us in a lot of ways," Seattle coach Pete Carroll said. "It started off with the defense not getting off the field the way we like to see them do. After that, I think we played pretty good football, save one play or so."

Russell Wilson led the Seahawks to a field goal in his only drive with Seattle's first-team offense. The rest of Seattle's 34-point first half was a showcase for its backup defense, which forced three turnovers, and a solid second-team offense led by Trevone Boykin, who passed for 189 yards.

"He did beautifully," Carroll said. "Threw the ball really well. Moved well, made some plays with his feet. Just was in really good command of what was going on."

Terence Garvin returned a tipped interception 37 yards for a Seattle TD, and Chris Carson cashed in a 1-yard TD run after LA's Kellen Clemens fumbled a handoff with Andre Williams.

Clemens threw a 74-yard TD strike to speedy Travis Benjamin, but Rivers' backup also had two interceptions on deflected passes.

"We turned the ball over and put our defense in poor positions early," Anthony Lynn said after his first game as the Chargers' new coach. "I thought we started well. I didn't like it when the (second-stringers) came in. We stopped playing Charger football."

Saturday, August 12 Scoreboard

New York Jets 7, Tennessee 3

Los Angeles Rams 13, Dallas 10

Arizona 20, Oakland 10

Sunday, August 13 Scoreboard

Detroit 24, Indianapolis 10

Seattle 48, Los Angeles Chargers 17