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Monday, December 16, 2013
Three halftime thoughts from Ravens-Lions

By Michael Rothstein

DETROIT -- Three halftime thoughts from Ford Field, where the Baltimore Ravens lead the Detroit Lions, 9-7.

Not a good night for Jonte Green: The replacement for Chris Houston and Darius Slay has not had the best night thus far. He's missed tackles, looked completely lost on a long pass to Torrey Smith and was called for a facemask penalty on the same play to Smith. The Lions, though, have used him on Smith more often than not in the game, which is somewhat surprising considering the experience Rashean Mathis has. Detroit doesn't really have any other option than Green, though, as Chris Greenwood has yet to play a defensive snap in the NFL.

Drops, drops, drops: Detroit's receivers spend some time after every practice working on catching extra passes, anything to cure the drops issues they have had the entire season. It didn't help Monday night. Detroit dropped three passes in the first half and the most surprising part of that is two of them were dropped by receiver Calvin Johnson, who had as many catches (two) as he did drops in the first half. Detroit needs more from Johnson and the receivers if they are going to rally in the second half.

Penalties have hurt Detroit. Again: The Lions have six penalties for 74 yards, but they came at incredibly bad times for the Lions. Three of the big penalties came on the final two drives of the half for Baltimore, giving the Ravens free field position to lead to two field goals. The killer penalty came on Louis Delmas, who was called for a helmet-to-helmet hit on Marlon Brown on a 3rd-and-8 that extended the Ravens' last drive of the half. Green's penalty was pretty bad as well considering he gave up the play at the same time.