Different kind of season opener for the Detroit Lions ends with familiar outcome

The final score was 27 to 23

Game day looked very different for Detroit Lions fans on Sunday, as no fans were allowed inside Ford Field amid the pandemic.

DETROIT – Football Sunday in Detroit is back, but much about the season opener was different amid the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

There were no parking lots full of people tailgating and no fans in the seats inside Ford Field.

The game appeared in favor of the Lions -- touchdowns and a Matt Praer field goal -- having a 17-point lead.

However, the Bears managed to come back with three fourth-quarter touchdowns, and the game ended with a 27-23 loss for the Lions.

When the National Anthem played, several players kneeled, some stood locked arm-in-arm and others left the field.

Quarterback Matthew Stafford took a knee, as well as safety Tracy Walker, who is the cousin of Ahmud Arbery.

Arbery was a Black man from Georgia who was shot and killed in February by two White men while jogging.

The stadium crowd consisted of cardboard cutouts, but players could hear audience cheers blaring through speakers.

Tailgating did not happen outside of Ford Field, but it didn’t stop fans from finding a way to still root for their home team. Many still appeared at traditional bars and even pedal pubs to celebrate.

While some fans said it was heartbreaking to not celebrate in a normal fashion, some said they were excited to still have the game.

About the Authors:

Victor Williams joined Local 4 News in October of 2019 after working for WOIO in Cleveland, OH, WLOX News in Biloxi, MS, and WBBJ in Jackson, TN. Victor developed a love for journalism after realizing he was a great speaker and writer at an early age.

DeJanay Booth joined WDIV as a web producer in July 2020. She previously worked as a news reporter in New Mexico before moving back to Michigan.