Lions history by the numbers: 70-61

June, 26, 2014
Jun 26
8:00
AM ET
We'll be looking at the history of the Detroit Lions from a little bit different perspective -- history through the numbers. Each weekday will feature a set of numbers counting down from 100.

The series continues with Nos. 70-61. Most of the numbers came from research on the Detroit Lions' website, record books, Pro-Football-Reference.com and ESPN Stats & Information.

70: Levi Johnson returned an interception 70 yards for a touchdown in the first game between Detroit and Seattle on Oct. 24, 1976. The Lions beat the Seahawks, 41-14, and intercepted quarterback (and future Detroit quarterbacks coach) Jim Zorn six times in the game, including the Johnson touchdown.

69: The Lions used this pick in 1951 to take back Jack Christiansen out of Colorado State. He became an electrifying returner and safety for eight seasons with Detroit. He was named to the All-NFL team for six consecutive years from 1952 to 1957. His skills -- notably his eight punt returns for touchdowns and 46 interceptions -- landed him in the Hall of Fame, Class of 1970.

68: Hall of Fame cornerback Lem Barney made his first NFL All-Pro team in 1968, his second season in the league. Barney had 56 interceptions in his career and scored 11 touchdowns. He was named to the Pro Bowl seven times and was inducted into the Hall in 1992.

Losses in franchise history to Minnesota, third to only division opponents Chicago and Green Bay in Detroit Lions history. In all, the Lions are 33-68-2 against the Vikings. Their last win against Minnesota came in the season opener in 2013.

67: The Lions allowed 67 sacks in 1976, the most ever by the franchise. The team went 6-8 that season and quarterback Greg Landry was sacked 55 of those 67 times, with Joe Reed taking the other 12. The team had two head coaches that season -- Rick Forzano, who went 1-3, and Tommy Hudspeth, who was 5-5.

66: Number of regular-season receiving touchdowns for Calvin Johnson, the most in franchise history. Johnson has had double-digit touchdowns in four of his seven years in the NFL, including a 16-touchdown season in 2011 -- the last time the Lions made the playoffs.

65: Points scored by the Los Angeles Rams on Oct. 29, 1950 -- the most scored on the Lions in team history. The Lions lost that game 65-24, as Norm Van Brocklin threw for five touchdowns. The Rams scored nine touchdowns that day, also a record against Detroit.

64: Kick returns for Glyn Milburn in 1996 -- the most in his career and the most in Detroit Lions history. He gained 1,627 yards in kick return yardage during that season and had a long of 25.4 yards -- the second-highest kick return average he had in his career. The 1,627 yards was also the most he had in a season in his career.

63: An NFL record for 43 years, New Orleans kicker Tom Dempsey made a 63-yard field goal to beat the Lions, 19-17, on Nov. 8, 1970. The kick was tied by multiple players -- including former Lions kicker David Akers -- before being broken by Matt Prater in 2013 by a yard.

62: Career interceptions for Dick LeBeau, a franchise record. He returned three interceptions for touchdowns during a career spanning from 1959 to 1972 and was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 2010. He played in 185 career games for Detroit and had only two seasons with under three interceptions -- his first and his last.

61: Linebacker Paris Lenon returned an interception 61 yards for a touchdown on Dec. 23, 2007 during a 25-20 Lions win over Kansas City, the Chiefs' first trip to Ford Field. More significant, this would be Detroit's last win until 2009 -- meaning it was the Lions' final win before the 0-16 season in 2008. The losing streak would start the week following this game with a 34-13 loss at Green Bay.

Michael Rothstein | email

ESPN Detroit Lions reporter

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