DETROIT -- I’m usually not a big believer in time of possession as an actual statistic. Of all stats that can be skewed, that seems to be the biggest one.
It doesn’t account for field position, turnovers or how fast a team can score. Maybe that’s from covering colleges for so long that the stat is a fairly meaningless one in most cases in my head.
Yet after Detroit’s 40-10 win against Green Bay on Thursday, I glanced at the numbers and it was just too big to ignore.
The Lions had the ball 20 minutes, 52 seconds longer than the Packers on Thursday, more than seven minutes longer than any other possession differential the Lions had this season. Detroit had the ball for 40 minutes, 26 seconds -- almost three full quarters.
That is kind of crazy.
Only two games this season -- the Jets’ 30-27 win against New England in Week 7, and the Packers’ 44-31 win against Minnesota in Week 8 -- had larger differentials. The Jets had the ball 22:33 longer than the Patriots, and the Packers had the ball 21:48 longer than the Vikings.
That said, here’s a look at some other stats that made a difference for the Lions on Thursday. Some stats were culled from ESPN Stats & Information. Follow Stats & Information on Twitter @ESPNStatsInfo
-1 -- Turnover margin for the Lions on Thursday.
1 -- Times Matthew Stafford was hit by Green Bay on Thursday according to the stat book, and it resulted in a turnover.
4 -- Plays longer than 10 yards for Green Bay on Thursday.
4 -- Yards of the Packers’ 10th longest play from scrimmage against Detroit. The Lions’ 10th longest play from scrimmage was 19 yards.
5 -- Straight drives of three-and-out or worse for the Packers on Thursday in the second and third quarters. Four of those drives ended in negative yardage for Green Bay.
5.9 -- Yards per carry for Reggie Bush.
7 -- Sacks by the Detroit defense.
8 -- Passes defended by Detroit against Green Bay, led by three for rookie Darius Slay, making his first start since Week 2.
9 -- Consecutive games Detroit lost on Thanksgiving Day prior to Thursday.
9 -- Quarterback hits for the Lions, including seven from the defensive line.
23 -- More first downs than the Packers for the Lions on Thursday.
145 -- Total offensive and return yards for Lions returner Jeremy Ross against his old team.
211 -- Combined rushing yards for Bush and Joique Bell.
435 -- Yard differential for Detroit (561 yards) against Green Bay (126 yards).