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1978 Detroit Lions

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7-9-0, Finished 3rd in NFC Central Division  · 1978 NFL Season Summary
 SRS: Total -1.8, Offense: -0.1, Defense: -1.7, SoS: -1.2, avg is 0.0.

Scored 290 points (18.1/g), 13th of 28 in the NFL. Allowed 300 points (18.8/g), 19th.
 Differential of -10 points (-0.6/g), 11th.  Expected W-L: 7.7-8.3.

Coach: Monte Clark (7-9-0)
 Offensive Coordinator: Bob Schnelker

Stadium: Pontiac Silverdome
 Training Camp: Oakland University (Rochester, Michigan)

Team Info

Principal Owner/Chairman William Clay Ford Sr.
General Manager Russ Thomas
Defensive Alignment 4-3

Team Stats and Rankings

Tot Yds & TO Passing Rushing
Player PF Yds Ply Y/P TO FL 1stPy 1stD Cmp Att Yds TD Int NY/A 1stD Att Yds TD Y/A 1stD
Team Offense 290 4465 1001 4.5 33 15 23 269 247 429 2302 19 18 4.8 141 525 2163 12 4.1 105
Team Defense 300 4483 970 4.6 41 19 36 276 191 350 2299 19 22 5.7 125 565 2184 18 3.9 115
Lg Rank Offense 13 21 3 7 20 14 19 8 8 23 26 17 22 9
Lg Rank Defense 19 7 14 11 11 2 6 18 13 16 13 14 18 15

Team Games & Schedule

W# Day Date OT Rec Opp Tm Opp 1stD TotYd PassY RushY TO 1stD TotYd PassY RushY TO
1 Sun September 3 boxscore L 0-1 Green Bay Packers 7 13 11 122 40 82 1 16 212 31 181
2 Sat September 9 boxscore W 1-1 @ Tampa Bay Buccaneers 15 7 11 196 47 149 2 10 109 -31 140 6
3 Sun September 17 boxscore L 1-2 Chicago Bears 0 19 15 237 94 143 2 15 326 141 185 2
4 Sun September 24 boxscore L 1-3 @ Seattle Seahawks 16 28 15 261 129 132 21 245 158 87 1
5 Sun October 1 boxscore L 1-4 @ Green Bay Packers 14 35 14 227 101 126 1 16 482 261 221 4
6 Sun October 8 boxscore L 1-5 Washington Redskins 19 21 19 374 143 231 1 12 284 208 76 2
7 Sun October 15 boxscore L 1-6 @ Atlanta Falcons 0 14 13 169 147 22 3 15 248 122 126
8 Sun October 22 boxscore W 2-6 San Diego Chargers 31 14 29 461 188 273 2 16 304 215 89 6
9 Sun October 29 boxscore W 3-6 @ Chicago Bears 21 17 23 315 181 134 1 21 358 191 167 2
10 Sun November 5 boxscore L 3-7 @ Minnesota Vikings 7 17 11 175 105 70 3 22 312 188 124 5
11 Sun November 12 boxscore W 4-7 Tampa Bay Buccaneers 34 23 20 404 193 211 3 18 202 89 113
12 Sun November 19 boxscore L 4-8 @ Oakland Raiders 17 29 18 328 208 120 4 24 280 119 161 1
13 Thu November 23 boxscore W 5-8 Denver Broncos 17 14 15 244 105 139 1 16 233 105 128 1
14 Sun December 3 boxscore L 5-9 @ St. Louis Cardinals 14 21 16 224 119 105 5 18 284 151 133 1
15 Sat December 9 boxscore W 6-9 Minnesota Vikings 45 14 22 507 350 157 2 16 235 213 22 3
16 Sun December 17 boxscore W 7-9 San Francisco 49ers 33 14 17 221 152 69 2 20 369 138 231 7

Passing

ProBowl(*), 1st-team All-Pro(+)
No. Player Age Pos G GS QBrec Cmp Att Cmp% Yds TD TD% Int Int% Lng Y/A AY/A Y/C Y/G Rate QBR Sk SkYds NY/A ANY/A Sk% 4QC GWD
16 Gary Danielson 27 QB 16 11 6-5-0 199 351 56.7% 2294 18 5.1 17 4.8 47 6.5 5.4 11.5 143.4 73.5 25 237 5.47 4.39 6.6 1 1
11 Greg Landry 32 qb 5 5 1-4-0 48 77 62.3% 452 1 1.3 1 1.3 20 5.9 5.5 9.4 90.4 77.4 21 205 2.52 2.27 21.4
15 Tom Skladany 23 P 16 0 0 1 0.0% 0 0 0.0 0 0.0 0 0.0 0.0 0.0 39.6 0 0 0.00 0.00 0.0
25 Horace King 25 FB 15 15 0 0 0 0 0 0 0.0 1 2 -2.00 -2.00 100.0
Team Total 25.3 16 7-9-0 247 429 57.6% 2746 19 4.4 18 4.2 47 6.4 5.4 11.1 171.6 74.0 47 444 4.84 3.93 9.9 1 1
Opp Total 16 191 350 54.6% 2781 19 5.4 22 6.3 7.9 6.20 14.6 173.8 72.6 55 482 5.7 4.2 13.6

Rushing & Receiving

ProBowl(*), 1st-team All-Pro(+)
Games Rushing Receiving
No. Player Age Pos G GS Att Yds TD Lng Y/A Y/G A/G Rec Yds Y/R TD Lng R/G Y/G YScm RRTD Fmb
24 Dexter Bussey 26 RB 16 16 225 924 5 36 4.1 57.8 14.1 31 275 8.9 1 18 1.9 17.2 1199 6 9
25 Horace King 25 FB 15 15 155 660 4 75 4.3 44.0 10.3 48 396 8.3 2 34 3.2 26.4 1056 6 3
38 Lawrence Gaines 25 rb 13 1 54 178 1 12 3.3 13.7 4.2 2 16 8.0 0 9 0.2 1.2 194 1 1
32 Rick Kane 24 15 0 44 153 2 19 3.5 10.2 2.9 16 161 10.1 0 26 1.1 10.7 314 2 1
16 Gary Danielson 27 QB 16 11 22 93 0 25 4.2 5.8 1.4 93 0 5
89 Luther Blue 24 WR 16 15 5 9 0 10 1.8 0.6 0.3 31 350 11.3 2 26 1.9 21.9 359 2 2
11 Greg Landry 32 qb 5 5 5 29 0 19 5.8 5.8 1.0 29 0 3
87 Freddie Scott 26 WR 16 13 4 53 0 36 13.3 3.3 0.3 37 564 15.2 2 47 2.3 35.3 617 2 1
81 David Hill* 24 TE 16 16 3 12 0 13 4.0 0.8 0.2 53 633 11.9 4 32 3.3 39.6 645 4 1
84 Jesse Thompson 22 KR/PR 11 1 2 7 0 10 3.5 0.6 0.2 18 175 9.7 4 21 1.6 15.9 182 4 4
43 Andy Bolton 24 6 0 2 5 0 3 2.5 0.8 0.3 5 0 0
39 Leonard Thompson 26 wr 16 1 1 7 0 7 7.0 0.4 0.1 10 167 16.7 4 45 0.6 10.4 174 4 2
58 Tony Daykin 23 16 0 1 8 0 8 8.0 0.5 0.1 8 0 0
55 Ed O'Neil 26 MLB 16 16 1 25 0 25 25.0 1.6 0.1 25 0 0
14 Joe Reed 30 1 0 1 0 0 0 0.0 0.0 1.0 0 0 1
45 Ray Jarvis 29 wr 2 2 0 0 0 0 0.0 0.0 1 9 9.0 0 9 0.5 4.5 9 0 0
Team Total 25.3 16 525 2163 12 75 4.1 135.2 32.8 247 2746 11.1 19 47 15.4 171.6 4909 31 35
Opp Total 16 565 2184 18 3.9 136.5 35.3 191 2299 12.0 19 11.9 143.7 4483 37 41

Kick & Punt Returns

ProBowl(*), 1st-team All-Pro(+)
Games Punt Returns Kick Returns
No. Player Age Pos G GS Ret Yds TD Lng Y/R Rt Yds TD Lng Y/Rt APYd
84 Jesse Thompson 22 KR/PR 11 1 16 161 0 35 10.1 14 346 0 42 24.7 689
89 Luther Blue 24 WR 16 15 7 59 0 15 8.4 7 170 0 60 24.3 588
87 Freddie Scott 26 WR 16 13 8 55 0 15 6.9 3 72 0 29 24.0 744
39 Leonard Thompson 26 wr 16 1 3 19 0 9 6.3 8 207 0 31 25.9 400
26 Tony Leonard 25 3 0 10 114 0 24 11.4 114
32 Rick Kane 24 15 0 8 156 0 27 19.5 470
30 Nat Terry 22 4 0 7 145 0 30 20.7 145
28 James Hunter 24 lcb 9 5 2 21 0 19 10.5 1 21 0 21 21.0 42
31 Ken Callicutt 23 13 0 2 12 0 10 6.0 12
86 Willie McGee 28 4 0 1 0 0 0 0.0 0
21 Walt Williams 24 LCB 15 11 1 1 0 1 1.0 1
Team Total 25.3 16 47 430 0 35 9.1 51 1129 0 60 22.1 6468
Opp Total 16 54 467 0 8.6 69 1424 0 20.6

Kicking & Punting

ProBowl(*), 1st-team All-Pro(+)
Games 0-19 20-29 30-39 40-49 50+ Scoring Punting
No. Player Age Pos G GS FGA FGM FGA FGM FGA FGM FGA FGM FGA FGM FGA FGM FG% XPA XPM XP% Pnt Yds Lng Blck Y/P
15 Tom Skladany 23 P 16 0 86 3654 63 1 42.5
1 Benny Ricardo 24 K 16 0 3 3 7 7 8 6 9 4 1 28 20 71.4%% 33 32 97.0%%
Team Total 25.3 16 3 3 7 7 8 6 9 4 1 28 20 71.4%% 33 32 97.0%% 86 3654 63 1 42.5
Opp Total 16 13 8 61.5%% 39 38 97.4%% 87 3497 40.2

Defense & Fumbles

ProBowl(*), 1st-team All-Pro(+)
Games Def Interceptions Fumbles Sacks & Tackles
No. Player Age Pos G GS Sk Int Yds TD Lng PD FF Fmb FR Yds TD Tkl Ast Sfty
24 Dexter Bussey 26 RB 16 16 0 9 2 0 0
40 Jimmy Allen 26 FS 14 14 5 70 0 27 0 0 1 2 64 1
16 Gary Danielson 27 QB 16 11 0 5 2 -12 0
25 Horace King 25 FB 15 15 0 3 3 0 0
39 Leonard Thompson 26 wr 16 1 0 2 4 0 0
11 Greg Landry 32 qb 5 5 0 3 2 0 0
55 Ed O'Neil 26 MLB 16 16 4 49 0 31 0 0 0 1 0 0
59 Charlie Weaver 29 RLB 16 16 3 32 0 22 0 0 0 2 0 0
84 Jesse Thompson 22 KR/PR 11 1 0 4 0 0 0
77 John Woodcock 24 LDT 16 16 0 0 4 0 0
27 Luther Bradley 23 RCB 16 16 3 85 1 76 0
38 Lawrence Gaines 25 rb 13 1 0 1 2 0 0
89 Luther Blue 24 WR 16 15 0 2 0 0 0
29 Mike Burns 24 SS 15 11 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 0 0
31 Ken Callicutt 23 13 0 0 1 1 0 0
66 Karl Chandler 26 11 0 0 0 2 0 0
61 Homer Elias 23 LG 16 16 0 0 2 0 0
81 David Hill* 24 TE 16 16 0 1 1 0 0
28 James Hunter 24 lcb 9 5 2 -4 0 0 0
42 Reggie Pinkney 23 13 2 1 22 0 22 0 0 0 1 0 0
33 Bruce Rhodes 26 ss 15 5 1 24 0 24 0 0 0 1 0 0
60 Al Baker*+ 22 RDE 16 16 0 0 1 0 0
58 Tony Daykin 23 16 0 0 0 1 0 0
65 Amos Fowler 22 16 0 0 0 1 0 0
83 William Gay 23 16 0 0 0 1 0 0
64 Dan Gray 22 14 0 0 0 1 0 0
32 Rick Kane 24 15 0 0 1 0 0 0
50 Paul Naumoff 33 LLB 15 13 1 12 0 12 0
74 Brad Oates 25 RT 16 15 0 0 1 0 0
14 Joe Reed 30 1 0 0 1 0 -3 0
87 Freddie Scott 26 WR 16 13 0 1 0 0 0
21 Walt Williams 24 LCB 15 11 1 2 0 2 0
Team Total 25.3 16 22 292 1 76 0 0 35 39 49 1
Opp Total 16 47 41 22 2

Scoring Summary

ProBowl(*), 1st-team All-Pro(+)
No. Player Age Pos G GS RshTD RecTD PR TD KR TD FblTD IntTD OthTD AllTD 2PM XPM FGM Sfty Pts Pts/G
1 Benny Ricardo 24 K 16 0 32 20 92
24 Dexter Bussey 26 RB 16 16 5 1 6 36
25 Horace King 25 FB 15 15 4 2 6 36
81 David Hill* 24 TE 16 16 4 4 24
84 Jesse Thompson 22 KR/PR 11 1 4 4 24
39 Leonard Thompson 26 wr 16 1 4 4 24
89 Luther Blue 24 WR 16 15 2 2 12
32 Rick Kane 24 15 0 2 2 12
87 Freddie Scott 26 WR 16 13 2 2 12
40 Jimmy Allen 26 FS 14 14 1 1 6
27 Luther Bradley 23 RCB 16 16 1 1 6
38 Lawrence Gaines 25 rb 13 1 1 1 6
Team Total 25.3 16 12 19 1 1 33 32 20 290
Opp Total 16 18 19 2 38 8 2 300

Touchdown Log

Rk Date Opp Result Quarter Dist Type
1 1978-09-03 GNB L, 7-13 3 5 rush Dexter Bussey 5 yard rush (Benny Ricardo kick)
2 1978-09-09 @ TAM W, 15-7 1 9 pass Jesse Thompson 9 yard pass from Greg Landry
3 1978-09-24 @ SEA L, 16-28 3 29 rush Dexter Bussey 29 yard rush (Benny Ricardo kick)
4 1978-10-01 @ GNB L, 14-35 3 12 pass Luther Blue 12 yard pass from Gary Danielson (Benny Ricardo kick)
5 1978-10-01 @ GNB L, 14-35 4 42 pass Freddie Scott 42 yard pass from Gary Danielson (Benny Ricardo kick)
6 1978-10-08 WAS L, 19-21 4 6 rush Rick Kane 6 yard rush (Benny Ricardo kick)
7 1978-10-22 SDG W, 31-14 1 2 pass Jesse Thompson 2 yard pass from Gary Danielson (Benny Ricardo kick)
8 1978-10-22 SDG W, 31-14 1 1 rush Lawrence Gaines 1 yard rush (Benny Ricardo kick)
9 1978-10-22 SDG W, 31-14 2 18 pass Dexter Bussey 18 yard pass from Gary Danielson (Benny Ricardo kick)
10 1978-10-22 SDG W, 31-14 2 6 pass Jesse Thompson 6 yard pass from Gary Danielson (Benny Ricardo kick)
11 1978-10-29 @ CHI W, 21-17 1 1 rush Horace King 1 yard rush (Benny Ricardo kick)
12 1978-10-29 @ CHI W, 21-17 2 8 pass Jesse Thompson 8 yard pass from Gary Danielson (Benny Ricardo kick)
13 1978-10-29 @ CHI W, 21-17 2 2 pass David Hill 2 yard pass from Gary Danielson (Benny Ricardo kick)
14 1978-11-05 @ MIN L, 7-17 2 9 pass Luther Blue 9 yard pass from Gary Danielson (Benny Ricardo kick)
15 1978-11-12 TAM W, 34-23 1 2 pass David Hill 2 yard pass from Gary Danielson (Benny Ricardo kick)
16 1978-11-12 TAM W, 34-23 2 75 rush Horace King 75 yard rush (Benny Ricardo kick)
17 1978-11-12 TAM W, 34-23 2 14 pass David Hill 14 yard pass from Gary Danielson (Benny Ricardo kick)
18 1978-11-12 TAM W, 34-23 3 1 rush Dexter Bussey 1 yard rush (Benny Ricardo kick)
19 1978-11-19 @ OAK L, 17-29 2 42 pass Freddie Scott 42 yard pass from Gary Danielson (Benny Ricardo kick)
20 1978-11-19 @ OAK L, 17-29 2 1 rush Horace King 1 yard rush (Benny Ricardo kick)
21 1978-11-23 DEN W, 17-14 1 2 rush Rick Kane 2 yard rush (Benny Ricardo kick)
22 1978-11-23 DEN W, 17-14 4 1 rush Horace King 1 yard rush (Benny Ricardo kick)
23 1978-12-03 @ STL L, 14-21 3 19 pass Leonard Thompson 19 yard pass from Gary Danielson (Benny Ricardo kick)
24 1978-12-03 @ STL L, 14-21 4 15 pass David Hill 15 yard pass from Gary Danielson (Benny Ricardo kick)
25 1978-12-09 MIN W, 45-14 1 34 pass Horace King 34 yard pass from Gary Danielson (Benny Ricardo kick)
26 1978-12-09 MIN W, 45-14 1 5 pass Leonard Thompson 5 yard pass from Gary Danielson (Benny Ricardo kick)
27 1978-12-09 MIN W, 45-14 2 17 pass Leonard Thompson 17 yard pass from Gary Danielson (Benny Ricardo kick)
28 1978-12-09 MIN W, 45-14 2 45 pass Leonard Thompson 45 yard pass from Gary Danielson (Benny Ricardo kick)
29 1978-12-09 MIN W, 45-14 4 5 pass Horace King 5 yard pass from Gary Danielson (Benny Ricardo kick)
30 1978-12-09 MIN W, 45-14 4 76 interception Luther Bradley 76 yard interception return (Benny Ricardo kick)
31 1978-12-17 SFO W, 33-14 2 4 rush Dexter Bussey 4 yard rush (Benny Ricardo kick)
32 1978-12-17 SFO W, 33-14 2 1 rush Dexter Bussey 1 yard rush (Benny Ricardo kick)
33 1978-12-17 SFO W, 33-14 3 64 fumble Jimmy Allen 64 yard fumble return (Benny Ricardo kick)

Opponent Touchdown Log

Rk Date Opp Result Quarter Dist Type
1 1978-09-03 GNB W, 13-7 3 1 rush Barty Smith 1 yard rush (Chester Marcol kick)
2 1978-09-09 @ TAM L, 7-15 1 1 rush Ricky Bell 1 yard rush (Neil O'Donoghue kick)
3 1978-09-17 CHI W, 19-0 2 1 rush Walter Payton 1 yard rush (Bob Thomas kick)
4 1978-09-17 CHI W, 19-0 3 40 pass James Scott 40 yard pass from Bob Avellini (Bob Thomas kick)
5 1978-09-24 @ SEA W, 28-16 2 5 rush Jim Zorn 5 yard rush (Efren Herrera kick)
6 1978-09-24 @ SEA W, 28-16 4 40 pass Steve Largent 40 yard pass from Jim Zorn (Efren Herrera kick)
7 1978-09-24 @ SEA W, 28-16 4 4 pass Ron Howard 4 yard pass from Jim Zorn (Efren Herrera kick)
8 1978-09-24 @ SEA W, 28-16 4 12 pass Sam McCullum 12 yard pass from Jim Zorn (Efren Herrera kick)
9 1978-10-01 @ GNB W, 35-14 1 1 rush Barty Smith 1 yard rush (Chester Marcol kick)
10 1978-10-01 @ GNB W, 35-14 2 1 rush David Whitehurst 1 yard rush (Chester Marcol kick)
11 1978-10-01 @ GNB W, 35-14 2 43 pass Aundra Thompson 43 yard pass from David Whitehurst (Chester Marcol kick)
12 1978-10-01 @ GNB W, 35-14 3 76 rush Terdell Middleton 76 yard rush (Chester Marcol kick)
13 1978-10-01 @ GNB W, 35-14 4 19 pass Aundra Thompson 19 yard pass from David Whitehurst (Chester Marcol kick)
14 1978-10-08 WAS W, 21-19 2 0 fumble Gerard Williams 0 yard fumble return (Mark Moseley kick)
15 1978-10-08 WAS W, 21-19 4 21 pass Jean Fugett 21 yard pass from Joe Theismann (Mark Moseley kick)
16 1978-10-08 WAS W, 21-19 4 25 pass John McDaniel 25 yard pass from Joe Theismann (Mark Moseley kick)
17 1978-10-15 @ ATL W, 14-0 2 24 pass Billy Ryckman 24 yard pass from Steve Bartkowski (Tim Mazzetti kick)
18 1978-10-15 @ ATL W, 14-0 4 25 rush Bubba Bean 25 yard rush (Tim Mazzetti kick)
19 1978-10-22 SDG L, 14-31 1 55 pass Lydell Mitchell 55 yard pass from Dan Fouts (Rolf Benirschke kick)
20 1978-10-22 SDG L, 14-31 4 25 pass Charlie Joiner 25 yard pass from James Harris (Rolf Benirschke kick)
21 1978-10-29 @ CHI L, 17-21 2 9 rush Bob Avellini 9 yard rush (Bob Thomas kick)
22 1978-10-29 @ CHI L, 17-21 3 2 rush Roland Harper 2 yard rush (Bob Thomas kick)
23 1978-11-05 @ MIN W, 17-7 3 21 pass Sammy White 21 yard pass from Fran Tarkenton (Rick Danmeier kick)
24 1978-11-05 @ MIN W, 17-7 4 1 rush Chuck Foreman 1 yard rush (Rick Danmeier kick)
25 1978-11-12 TAM L, 23-34 2 12 pass Jim Obradovich 12 yard pass from Mike Rae (Neil O'Donoghue kick)
26 1978-11-12 TAM L, 23-34 4 31 pass George Ragsdale 31 yard pass from Gary Huff (Neil O'Donoghue kick)
27 1978-11-19 @ OAK W, 29-17 1 1 rush Mark van Eeghen 1 yard rush
28 1978-11-19 @ OAK W, 29-17 2 1 rush Mark van Eeghen 1 yard rush (Errol Mann kick)
29 1978-11-19 @ OAK W, 29-17 3 0 fumble Mark van Eeghen 0 yard fumble return (Errol Mann kick)
30 1978-11-19 @ OAK W, 29-17 3 2 pass Dave Casper 2 yard pass from Ken Stabler (Errol Mann kick)
31 1978-11-23 DEN L, 14-17 1 10 pass Riley Odoms 10 yard pass from Craig Morton (Jim Turner kick)
32 1978-11-23 DEN L, 14-17 3 2 rush Larry Canada 2 yard rush (Jim Turner kick)
33 1978-12-03 @ STL W, 21-14 2 10 rush Steve Jones 10 yard rush (Jim Bakken kick)
34 1978-12-03 @ STL W, 21-14 3 1 rush Jim Otis 1 yard rush (Jim Bakken kick)
35 1978-12-03 @ STL W, 21-14 4 53 pass Dave Stief 53 yard pass from Jim Hart (Jim Bakken kick)
36 1978-12-09 MIN L, 14-45 2 1 rush Robert Miller 1 yard rush (Rick Danmeier kick)
37 1978-12-09 MIN L, 14-45 3 34 pass Kevin Miller 34 yard pass from Fran Tarkenton (Rick Danmeier kick)
38 1978-12-17 SFO L, 14-33 1 35 pass Jack Steptoe 35 yard pass from Steve DeBerg (Ray Wersching kick)
39 1978-12-17 SFO L, 14-33 4 11 rush Freddie Solomon 11 yard rush (Ray Wersching kick)