MX23RW : Tuesday, July 16 14:45:15| >> :600:114615632:114615632:
Nov 26, 2015 at 5.30pm UK at ​Ford Field
Philadelphia Eagles
Detroit Lions
Riddick (2:10)
Celek (14:20)
Tate (7:53), Johnson (0:12)
Johnson (7:09, 5:05)
Matthews (2:56)
Bell (10:42)

Live Commentary: Philadelphia Eagles 14-45 Detroit Lions - as it happened

Relive Sports Mole's live coverage of the NFL clash between the Detroit Lions and Philadelphia Eagles at Ford Field.

Calvin Johnson scored three touchdown as the Detroit Lions cruised to a 45-14 win over the Philadelphia Eagles on Thanksgiving in the NFL.

Theo Riddick and Golden Tate also found the endzone in the first half for the hosts, while Joique Bell was on the scoresheet late on.

Brent Celek and Jordan Matthews had touchdowns for the visitors, but Mark Sanchez struggled at quarterback, being sacked six times and losing a fumble.

Read how all the action unfolded below.

Good evening! It's Thanksgiving, which means it's a triple header in the NFL today, with the Philadelphia Eagles and Detroit Lions kicking things off in around half an hour. Let's start with a look at the inactive players.

LIONS INACTIVES: Waddle, Jones, Wright, Robinson, Cudjo, I Johnson, Wright

EAGLES INACTIVES: Bradford, Krause, Mathews, Rice, Hawkinson, Ertz, Bair

So, the visitors are missing several key players for this game, with starting quarterback Sam Bradford still sidelined with a concussion and shoulder injury, meaning Mark Sanchez will be under center for a second straight game. Running back Ryan Mathews and tight end Zach Ertz will also be missed for the visiting side, as they look to avoid a third straight defeat.

There's better news for the Lions, as wide receiver Calvin Johnson is active, despite having been listed as questionable for this game, while Darius Slay also plays.

Both sides are out of the playoff picture coming into this fixture. The Eagles are third in their division, but are just a win behind the Giants, who top the NFC East, so a win today could bring them back into post-season contention. The Lions made a slow start to the season, and they remain bottom in the NFC North, despite winning their last two games.

Here are the visitors going through their warmups at Ford Field a little earlier:

In eight previous meetings between the two sides, the Eagles have won seven times, including last time the sides met in the 2013 season, when the game was affected by heavy snowfall.

Here's the home side going through their final preparations ahead of kickoff:

Ahead of this game, Eagles head coach Chip Kelly has been complimentary of Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford, telling reporters: "I know Matt well. He's an extremely talented quarterback who can make every throw. He's in the conversation for the strongest arm in the league. He can fit the ball in really, really tight window. I think he's accurate. I also think he's tough."

The Lions always play on Thanksgiving, but Detroit head coach Jim Caldwell believes that Thursday games can take their toll on the players: "I think you would have to look at health and those kinds of things and make some comparisons, what the data says. But I can tell you, from ground level, I can tell you, when you don't have guys operating at their absolute best, it's going to diminish the quality of play. But usually, it's not like any other week, because of the fact that you're going to miss some guys. It's part of the process in this league that you're going to have to play. With guys, it's the next-man-up sort of routine, and it comes into play on Thursdays, as well as Sundays."

This isn't the only game taking place in the NFL today, as the Carolina Panthers will be aiming to extend their unbeaten start to the season when they travel to the Dallas Cowboys later, while two more NFC North sides go head-to-head in the final game of the night, as the Green Bay Packers host the Chicago Bears.

The Lions have won the pre-game coin toss and chose to defer to the second half, to the visitors will get the football first.

KICKOFF! The Lions take the opening kickoff.

After a touchback, Mark Sanchez gets possession on the 20-yard line, and manages to get the ball to Riley Cooper with his first pass of the day, before the quarterback scrambles for a couple on third down to move the chains. It's a solid start for Philadelphia.

Jordan Matthews makes a catch to take the Eagles across midfield after DeMarco Murray fails to make progress with a couple of running plays. Sproles takes over at running back, and manages to add another five yards, before a penalty against the Lions moves the visitors closer to the endzone. The Eagles will be hoping to get some points on board from a patient opening drive.

Murray makes another shot run to take the ball to Detroit's 25-yard line, but a facemask penalty wipes off a big gain from Riley Cooper on the next play, leaving the Eagles needing 22 on third down. Sproles does his best with a run down the sideline, but he's forced out of bounds after a gain of eight.

MISSED FIELD GOAL! Caleb Sturgis comes on to try to add three points for the Eagles, but the facemask penalty means he's kicking from 50 yards out. It initially looks like a decent effort from the kicker, but the ball just drifts over to the right, thumping the post before rebounding away.

There could already be an injury issue for the visitors as Jason Peters appeared to injure his knee during the opening drive. He was able to hobble to the sideline relatively unaided, but he looks in quite a bit of pain while talking to the team's medical staff on the sideline. The offensive tackle has already missed time with a back spasm this season, and would be a big loss if he can't return.

As the Lions offense come onto the field for the first time, Stafford immediately looks to Calvin Johnson, but the pass to the single season receiving yards record holder is a little low, and he can't get his fingers underneath it. Ameer Abdullah is tackled for a loss of five as the home side try to run the ball, before the running back drops a short pass, ensuring a quick three and out from Detroit.

SACK! Sanchez keeps hold of the ball for too long while looking for an open receiver, and gets dropped for a loss of three yards by Ziggy Ansah, so Philadelphia will punt the ball back to the Lions. Both offenses are taking their time easing into this game in the first quarter.

The Lions get a first down for the first time today as Ameer Abdullah breaks off a couple of tackles for a 23-yard gain before eventually being stopped by Walter Thurmond. Theo Riddick is left wide open a couple of plays later, leaving Stafford to fire the ball over the middle for another 23 yards. This is more like it from Detroit.

Tight end Brandon Pettigrew almost gets the touchdown for the Lions, but he can't quite keep hold of the ball in the corner.

TOUCHDOWN! Philadelphia Eagles 0-7 Detroit Lions (Theo Riddick)

It's first blood to the Lions as the home side have the ball in the endzone as Stafford connects with Theo Riddick from eight yards out. After Pettigrew came up short, Golden Tate made a couple of short gains, before the running back made the catch out of the backfield for the opening score. The first possession from Detroit was pretty lacklustre, but that was a pretty clinical display from the Lions.

DeMarco Murray manages to slip past a couple of Lions players to take the ball across midfield for Philadelphia after Matthews picked up 13. Tight end Trey Burton makes his first reception of the year, picking up 43 yards with a run down the left, but he's tackled just short of the endzone. The massive gain puts the Eagles in a dangerous position though.

This was Theo Riddick celebrating the opening touchdown of the game:

END OF FIRST QUARTER: Philadelphia Eagles 0-7 Detroit Lions

Murray takes the ball again as the Eagles try to punch the ball across from five yards out, but the running back is brought down just a yard short of the endzone in the final play before the end of the opening 15 minutes.

TOUCHDOWN! Philadelphia Eagles 7-7 Detroit Lions (Brent Celek)

The Eagles are back on level terms just two plays into the second quarter. Sanchez initially looks to Murray to get the ball in the endzone again, but the running back is well blocked. Brent Celek gets open on the next play though, and is able to stretch the ball across at the second time of asking with a acrobatic leap for the line. The two sides have been well matched so far, with the offenses taking a little while to get going, while neither defense has come up with a big play yet.

Joique Bell, who was hampered by injury in the first half of the season, makes his first play of the night for the Lions, collecting a shuttle pass from Stafford before breaking to the sideline for a gain of 18. The running back is on the move again on the next play, adding a further six to move the Lions to the Philadelphia 42. The Lions have been distributing the ball around the offense in the first half, but Calvin Johnson is still yet to make a reception for the home side.

TOUCHDOWN! Philadelphia Eagles 7-14 Detroit Lions (Golden Tate)

The Lions make it look so easy as Golden Tate walks into the endzone for the NFC North side's second touchdown of the day. Riddick comes back in at running back, and is tackled just short of the line, but Tate is left wide open on the next play, giving Stafford plenty of time to pick him out with a short pass before he casually strolls across.

Eagles cornerback Nolan Carroll and the Lions' Glover Quin both picked up ankle injuries earlier in the quarter and have both gone into their respective locker rooms for further treatment.

SACK! Ziggy Ansah gets to the quarterback for the second time in this game, tackling Sanchez for a loss of seven to force another quick three and out from Philadelphia.

The Lions have the ball back as they look for a third straight touchdown drive. Stafford finally manages to get the ball to Calvin Johnson, picking out the wide receiver for a gain of 19.

Detroit try to keep the drive going as Stafford fires the ball down the middle to Golden Tate, but the scorer of the second touchdown can't hold on to the ball, so the home side will have to try for a field goal.

FIELD GOAL! Philadelphia Eagles 7-17 Detroit Lions (Matt Prater)

It's not an easy kick for Matt Prater, as the Lions kicker comes on to attempt a 48-yard field goal, but he just manages to squeeze it inside the right post to extend the home side's lead to 10 points.

The Eagles' running game has really struggled so far, and it stutters again as Murray loses two yards. Sanchez tries his luck with a couple of deep passes to try to get Philadelphia across midfield, but Celek can't hold on as the ball comes his way, before Darius Slay breaks up a throw intended by Miles Austin. After just three plays, the Eagles are punting again.

Calvin Johnson was kept quiet in the first quarter, but he's really making his presence felt now as he hauls in a nine-yard catch before Abdullah gets the first down on the next play. Johnson gets the ball again, this time gaining 15 to leave the Lions just short of midfield as they look to add to their score further before half time. Another touchdown before the break would be a huge blow for the Eagles, who did start this game well, but have just not been able to get going since their first possession.

Eric Ebron holds onto the ball despite a heavy hit from Thurmond, making 19 and nine-yard receptions on consecutive plays to leave the Lions just 23 yards short of a third touchdown. The Detroit offense is in complete control at the moment, while the Eagles defense is struggling, having barely had a break in the second quarter.

SACK! Stafford can't get the ball to Calvin Johnson in the corner of the endzone, before hesitating too long while looking for an open receiver on second down, resulting in Vinny Curry tackling him for a loss of seven.

TOUCHDOWN! Philadelphia Eagles 7-24 Detroit Lions (Calvin Johnson)

The Lions pile more misery on the Eagles before half time as Stafford recovers from behind sacked to fire the ball into the corner of the endzone to Calvin Johnson for a 25-yard touchdown. It's been a brilliant second quarter for Detroit!

HALF TIME: Philadelphia Eagles 7-24 Detroit Lions

So, the Detroit Lions are in cruise control as they head into half time with a 24-7 lead over the Philadelphia Eagles. Theo Riddick, Golden Tate and Calvin Johnson all have touchdowns, while Matt Prater has a 100% record with three extra points and a field goal. It will take a remarkable second-half turnaround from the Eagles to prevent them slipping to a third straight loss.

Matthew Stafford has been clinical so far this evening, completing 17 of his 25 attempts for 201 yards and three touchdown. He's been using all of his receivers as well, completing multiple receptions to Tate, Johnson, Riddick and Eric Ebron, while Ameer Abdullah and Joique Bell have split the duties in the backfield.

The Eagles defense have barely had more than a minute off the field at a time since the end of the first quarter, and they've really struggled. As soon as they cover one threat, someone else manages to get open. Rookie cornerback Eric Rowe has struggled, having spent the majority of the second quarter covering Calvin Johnson. Walter Thurmond and Connor Barwin have both been busy though, each making four tackles for the visiting side.

We've got a little longer than usual to look back at the first half, as the crowd at Ford Field are being treated to a half-time performance from rapper Big Sean. The Eagles' only points in the opening two quarters came from a Brent Celek touchdown. The tight end really had to stretch to get the ball across, and initially appeared to have injured himself in the process, but he quickly recovered:

Even with a win today, the Lions will still have a long way to go to get back into playoff contention. They came into today's game with a 3-7 record, four wins behind their divisional rivals the Vikings and Packers. Even if they can't finish top of the NFC North, the wildcard spots are a long way off too, with the 6-4 Falcons currently holding on the the sixth seed spot in the NFC.

The players are getting ready for the second half.

RESTART! Caleb Sturgis kicks off the second half.

There's more bad news for the Eagles as they're going to have to play the remainder of the game without Nolan Carroll, as he suffered a broken ankle in the first half. That means Rowe will likely remain on Calvin Johnson for the rest of the game, something which will be welcome news for Lions fans.

Johnson gets involved early on in the first half, getting his hands to a seven-yard pass from Stafford before Golden Tate gets open to make a 19-yard surge down the sideline. The Lions seem to be carrying on as they finished the first half.

Stafford tried a deep pass to Joique Bell, and weights the throw nicely, but the running back just seems to lose his footing. Riddick is able to wriggle free from Rowe to power forward for 11 yards and a first down. The Lions are looking good to increase their lead at the start of the third quarter.

Kendricks misses a tackle on Riddick, leaving the running back to get another nine yards for the Lions, leaving them just four yards from the endzone.

TOUCHDOWN! Philadelphia Eagles 7-31 Detroit Lions (Calvin Johnson)

Calvin Johnson loses Eric Rowe again, stretching above the rookie to haul in another touchdown catch. Detroit are absolutely running away with this game! The Eagles need to keep the offense on the field for more than three plays, if only to give the defense a rest, as they're looking rather weary.

The Lions defense are keen to make an impact, as they've hardly seen any action since the first quarter. Jordan Matthews initially gets his hands to a short pass from Sanchez, but a ferocious hit from Isa Abdul-Quddus knocks it from his grasp, and appears to have left the wide receiver shaken up.

FUMBLE! Mark Sanchez's last game on Thanksgiving, during his tenure with the New York Jets, resulted in the infamous "Buttfumble" play. This one won't gain quite as much attention, but it's still a horrible mistake from the quarterback as he loses the ball under a sack from Haloti Ngata, allowing Ziggy Ansah to recover it for Detroit. It's a fantastic effort from the Lions defense though, and it gives the hosts the ball back in a strong field position.

TOUCHDOWN! Philadelphia Eagles 7-38 Detroit Lions (Calvin Johnson)

Detroit make the Eagles pay for the fumble, with Matthew Stafford launching a three-yard pass into the endzone for Calvin Johnson, giving the receiver his third touchdown of the game. Everything just looks so easy for the hosts, while the Eagles are playing like a team already resigned to the defeat.

SACK! Sanchez is brought down for the fourth time, although he at least manages to keep hold of the ball this time as Stephen Tulloch takes him down for a loss of eight yards. Sanchez tries to make amends on the next play with a pass to Brent Celek, but the tight end comes up short looking for the first down, so it's another punt for Philadelphia.

Lions punter Sam Martin comes onto the field for the first time since their first possession of the game as Detroit try to run the ball more, but Abdullah can't get going, while a shuttle pass to Ebron doesn't reach the tight end, resulting a rare three and out for the Lions.

END OF THIRD QUARTER: Philadelphia Eagles 7-38 Detroit Lions

SACK! Ziggy Ansah has tormented Mark Sanchez all day, and the defensive end gets to the quarterback again, tackling him for a loss of eight on third down, so it's yet another drive with no points for the visiting side. With so many players out injured for this game, the Eagles don't have too many options, but they surely need to try something different to make the scoreline a little more respectable.

Having struggled to pick up yards in the last Lions drive, Abdullah is on the move as the Detroit offense comes back onto the field, with a first down after two short gains from the running back. Pettigrew gets the home side across midfield, just getting his fingertips to a high pass over the middle for 21 yards.

TOUCHDOWN! Philadelphia Eagles 7-45 Detroit Lions (Joique Bell)

The Lions continue to find ways to slip past the Philadelphia defense as Joique Bell takes a short pass before sprinting towards the endzone, being tackled a yard short. The running back stays on the field though, and goes over the top to get the points on the board on the next play.

The Eagles get a rare first down as Sanchez spots Miles Austin in space, but the drive soon stalls, with Sanchez struggling on a run, before Barner comes up short of the line of scrimmage, bringing Donnie Jones on for his sixth punt of the day.

SACK! Vinny Curry manages to get to Stafford for the second time today as the quarterback gets blocked in by the Eagles, resulting in him being tackled for a loss of eight.

Barner is getting some carries for the Eagles as they head towards a heavy defeat, with the running back doing enough for the first down. Sproles takes over in the backfield, and evades a couple of tackles to move the chains again, but the Eagles are immediately moved back as Agholor is flagged for an unsportsmanlike conduct penalty, clashing with Carey near the sideline.

TOUCHDOWN! Philadelphia Eagles 14-45 Detroit Lions (Jordan Matthews)

The Eagles avoid being shut out in the second half at least, as Sanchez lets a deep pass fly to the corner of the endzone, where Jordan Matthews manages to get himself in space, getting a second touchdown on the board for the visitors. That's probably the best the Eagles have looked since the first quarter.

With less than two minutes remaining on the clock, there's a bit of a delay as a couple of fans have found their way onto the field with banners. They're quickly removed though, allowing Detroit to get on with their punt.

FULL TIME: Philadelphia Eagles 14-45 Detroit Lions

The Eagles let the clock run down, bringing an end to an embarrassing performance from the visitors. The Lions did play well, but it really was a woeful effort from the NFC East side, who looked disjointed on offense and stretched defensively. The loss leaves them with three straight defeats ahead of a game against the as yet unbeaten New England Patriots next week.

For the Lions, that's now three wins in a row, led by a season-best performance from Calvin Johnson, who they will need to be at his best if they're to get back in the playoff race.

Well, that's all from this game, but stick around as we'll have live coverage of the second of the Thanksgiving triple-header shortly, as the Carolina Panthers take on the Dallas Cowboys. Until then, thanks for joining me this evening. Goodbye.

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