|Lions' fade continues: Losing streak at 5; playoff hopes slim|
|Written by Admin|
|Monday, 10 December 2007 14:30|
Their Detroit Lions teammates weren't about to let them.
Hanson missed a key field goal and Lenon wasn't able to pick up a game-clinching fumble as the Cowboys rallied for the 28-27 victory. The Lions are now 6-7, having lost five straight and falling out of the playoff picture.
``That won't be listed as an attempt at a game-winning kick, but it puts us up two scores with 10 minutes left, so it might as well be,'' said Hanson, the Lions' career scoring leader. ``We had a chance to beat the best team in the NFC, and I missed the kick. That's hard to swallow.''
The Lions led 27-21 with 10:49 to play when the normally automatic Hanson was wide right on a 35-yard attempt. In his 16-year career, he has made over 95 percent of attempts inside 40 yards.
``I won't look at anyone at practice all week,'' he said. ``We were still winning, but I knew that was going to cost us the game. That's the way football works. If I make the kick, we win. When I missed it, it gave them all the momentum.''
The Lions looked like they had a chance to hold on, especially after Jason Witten fumbled at the Detroit 1 with 6:11 left, and the game appeared over when Tony Romo fumbled with 90 seconds to play.
Lenon had just broken toward Romo, and appeared to be in perfect position to make the recovery, but the ball skipped off his leg to former Lion Kyle Kosier. Just over a minute later, Romo hit Witten for 16 yards and the game-winning touchdown.
``I saw Romo start to scramble, and I was running at full speed when the ball came out,'' Lenon said Monday. ``Usually, you just fall on the ball and get the turnover, but I couldn't do that. The ball wasn't on the ground, it had just bounced up into the air. I tried to grab it, and it hit me.
``If I make that play, the game's over. I didn't make it.''
Lions coach Rod Marinelli, though, wasn't going to give Hanson or Lenon the responsibility for Detroit's heartbreaking loss.
``Those were big plays, but they weren't the only plays,'' he said. ``We had a lot of chances to make plays, and that's on all of us. We aren't going to hold a pity party. There aren't any excuses.''
At 6-2, the Lions were thinking about their first playoff berth since 1999, but that seems like a distant dream after their late-season fade.
``The last five weeks have been awfully tough,'' Lions center Dominic Raiola said. ``Our backs are really against the wall now, and we've got no one to blame but ourselves.''
Notes: S Kenoy Kennedy (hamstring) was undergoing tests on Monday, and the team was unsure about his availability for Sunday's game at San Diego. ... OL Damien Woody, who has started the last two games at right tackle - his first appearances at tackle in his nine-year career - would be happy to return to the Lions as a tackle. ``Why not? I'd definitely come back as a tackle if that's where they could use me,'' said Woody, who is a free agent after the season. ``I'm a lineman. If they want me to try tight end, I'll do that.''