Match Report

Lions playoff roar deafens the Bucs

The Detroit Lions are onto the NFC Championship game for the first time in 32 years, after edging out Tampa Bay Sunday night.

Wade McElwain
Wade McElwain

Last Updated: 2024-01-23

Umaima Saeed

It was an all-out Sunday Funday for the Detroit Lions fans, as they got away with a win over a plucky Tampa Bay Bucs squad to advance to the NFC final next Sunday, with their last appearance coming 32 years ago.  Lions fans were in hysterics until the final 2 minutes, as they hung on to beat the Bucs 31-23 in a game that was back and forth until the end.  Detroit advances to the NFC championship game, while the Bucs have to feel good about an unexpected playoff run. 

Goff Enough

Jared Goff was able to weather the storm that the Bucs D were looking to bring in their ‘Revenge Tour’, but just like Taylor-he was able to shake it off with ease. 
Thanks to the legs of Jahmyr Gibbs, the Lions were able to break away from the pirate choke-hold in the 4th quarter to finally put the clamp on Tampa, and kneel the game to a flurry of white towels. 
Goff went 30/43 for 287 yards, and 2 massive touchdowns to give Detroit the W. He was fourth quarter clutch, going 11/12 and 113 yards, a force that was too much for for Baker.
Detroit Lions can celebrate that the last time that the team won 2 playoff games in a row, was 1957. 
And the last time they won a Super Bowl? They haven’t, yet. 

Baker Baked

Baker Mayfield was a huge surprise to everyone this season, leading his Bucs with sheer will to get to a post season berth no one was expecting. Mayfield was a beastly 26/41 for 349 yards, 3 touchdowns, but it was those 2 interceptions that busted his nut. 
After getting picked with 1:47 left in the game, Baker fell to the turf knowing that was as far as this season would go. 
Will the Buccaneers pay Baker to stay next year? And will they finally cough it up for Mike Evans, who was politely told ‘no thanks’ at the start of the season?
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Detroit Brings the D

Aidan Hutchinson has been an absolute force for the Lions, tallying up 8 sacks over the past 6 games, and getting another one for Detroit against Baker. 
While the sack machine has been in motion, the secondary of the Lions is another question.  Mike Evans blasted them for 147 yards, and shredded enough cheese back there to make Packers fans hungry.
They D got the job done against the Bucs, but taking on those 49ers next week is going to be a tall tale. 
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Bring on San Fran

The Lions can now lick their paws as they head off to California this week to take on the NFC West Champs, the San Francisco 49ers. 
Detroit is going to have a fix a lot of their containment issues if they hope to contain a team that includes McCaffery, Deebo, Aiyuk, and oh yeah, that crazy defence. 
At least it will be warm outside!

Wade McElwain
Wade McElwainSenior Sports Writer

Wade McElwain is our Mr. NFL, a bona fide North American sports nut who knows about NBA, NHL, MLB, PGA plus MMA boxing and more. Originally from Canada, Wade is also an international award-winning stand-up comedian; host of numerous TV game shows; and a TV producer & writer. He also runs NFL in London-the largest NFL fan group in Europe, and has hosted NFL events at Wembley and around the world. Yes, he lives alone and does nothing but watch sports.