Orlovsky didn't break the 100-yard passing plateau until late in the second half, but he didn't have many opportunities, either. The Lions struggled with penalties late in the game, and had the ball for 11 less minutes than Washington. It was a familiar story, but this time with less witnesses. For the first time since it opened in 2002, Ford Field failed to sell-out -- a trend that is likely to continue this year in Detroit.
"We weren't too consumed with it," said Orlovsky after the game. "We wanted to go out and play ball."
One of the few positives from Sunday's latest loss was the play of rookie defensive end Cliff Avril. The former Purdue standout recorded his first career sack on Redskins' quarterback Jason Campbell in the first quarter, forcing a fumble that was recovered by teammate and linebacker Paris Lenon. Avril has seen his playing time increase in recent weeks, yet wasn't concerned with personal attribution with his team still hunting for its first win. "I'm just trying to help as much as possible," he said. "I could have made more plays to help the team out. It's a team thing for me; I'm not really necessarily worried about my stats or anything like that."
Despite yielding over 400 yards of offense to Washington, Lenon -- the game's leading tackler (8) -- thought the contest was well within reach. He shrugged off the suggestion that the team's defense grew tired.
"No, I don't think we were starting to wane," he said. "I mean we had them really, but you've just got to -- I mean you look at that punt return. We had opportunities to make, you know, a big play on them. You've just got to be on top of it all the time, every play. Every play is the most important play."
He might be the only reason to watch the Lions, especially without Roy Williams. But have opposing secondaries changed the way they approach Calvin Johnson with Roy out of the mix?
"The first game we played Houston last week, they still played their main coverages," explained Johnson. "(Washington) didn't change too much, but the safety's always deep. But a lot of times - in the beginning of the game - he played over the top of me trying to high-low me."
Washington defensive back Carlos Rodgers concurred.
"Not for me," said Rodgers. "I was on a man (coverage), so there wasn't a difference for me. If I was going on Roy (Willams), it probably would have been different, but I was on Calvin (Johnson) so it wasn't that different."
Johnson finished with four catches for 57 yards, including the team's second and final touchdown.
Lions' head coach Rod Marinelli has been roasted most of the season following each contest, and Sunday was no different. But when questioned whether or not his optimism was realistic, Marinelli fired back: "Because that's who I am. You are you. You're negative.
"Ok, so I'm going to answer you: because I believe in what we're doing and I'm just going to keep doing it."