Third-quarter record: 4 wins, 9 losses, 7 ties

The collapse in the third quarter should have surprised no one who was paying attention this year. Out of 20 games the Lions only outscored their opponent in the third quarter four times. There were a lot of ties in there but if you distribute them equally to wins and losses you’re looking at basically a 6 and 11 team. The teams that finished around that record this year include the Jets, Giants, Falcons, and Bears. That’s right. In the third quarter, The Lions team that was a couple of dropped passes away from the Super Bowl played no better than a bunch of teams that fired their coaches.

I have no idea why we’re so flat in the second half. I don’t know if it’s a lack of adjustments at halftime. I don’t know if everybody’s sitting around in the locker room and cramping up. But poor performance in the third quarter cost this team games during the regular season and a trip to the Super Bowl.

Is there any explanation that makes sense? Is this a fixable problem or is this just one of those things that you get with Coach Meathead, and you have to take the bad with the good?

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What’s our record this season if we don’t have any 3rd quarters?

I didn’t do that math, I just looked quickly at who scored more points in the third quarter. But give me a few minutes and I’ll add it up.

Thats pretty bad

Washington asked Johnson about this. He told them he plans on being up 50 in the first half every time, so they still have a chance at the end

If the third quarter vanished from every game (asterisk denotes change in outcome):

Week 1, KC - L*
Week 2, SEA - W*
Week 3, ATL - W
Week 4, GB - W
Week 5, CAR - W
Week 6, TB - W
Week 7, BAL - L
Week 8, LV - W
Week 10, LAC - W
Week 11, CHI - W
Week 12, GB - L
Week 13, NO - W
Week 14, CHI - L
Week 15, DEN - W
Week 16, MIN - W
Week 17, DAL - L
Week 18, MIN - W
CON, SF - W*

So interestingly enough, If the third quarter was never played in the regular season, the Lions would have the same record of 12 and 5. But they’d be in the Super Bowl.

Edited to add: In three regular season games, the lousy third quarter performance resulted in a win but made the outcome a little too close for comfort. And for what it’s worth, of our six total losses, we were leading at halftime in three of them.

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It only mattered when it mattered.