28 Great Detroit Lions Quarterback Trivia Facts


The Detroit Lions have had their fair share of troubles at the quarterback position, and then some. Here is a look though at 28 great trivia items about the quarterbacks of the Detroit Lions.

-The team record of the Detroit Lions for most passing yards in a season is held by Scott Mitchell. It was in 1995 that he threw for 4,338 yards, helping the team reach an overall record of 10-6.

-Greg Landry threw 80 touchdown passes during his time as the quarterback for the Detroit Lions. Amazingly, a full 25% of those went to tight end Charlie Sanders.

-The first touchdown pass ever of Eric Hipple’s career came in a 48-17 Detroit win over the Chicago Bears in 1981, it went for just two yards to running back Rick Kane.

-In 1983, longtime Lions quarterback Greg Landry played one season for the Chicago Blitz of the United States Football League (USFL). Interestingly, his last year in pro football was the very next season when he returned to the NFL, but stayed in Chicago, playing for the Bears.

-Scott Mitchell set the record for most touchdowns thrown for in a season by a Detroit Lions quarterback when he threw for 32 in 1995.

-In a week 15 game in 1978, a 45-14 win over the Minnesota Vikings, Gary Danielson threw five touchdown passes. That was the most touchdown passes he ever threw in one game in his career.

-The Detroit Lions have drafted ten quarterbacks in the first round during their history; Otto Graham (1944), Y.A. Tittle (1948), John Rauch (1949), John Hadl (1962), Pete Beathard (1964), Greg Landry (1968), Chuck Long (1986), Andre Ware (1990), Joey Harrington (2002), and Matthew Stafford (2009).

-Eric Hipple threw four touchdown passes in his first game starting at quarterback for the Detroit Lions in 1981.

-In 1950, Bobby Layne threw 16 touchdown passes, more than half of them (9) went to receiver Cloyce Box including his last five touchdown passes that year.

-The first touchdown throw of Matthew Stafford’s career was an eight yard pass to wide receiver Calvin Johnson in a week two loss to the Minnesota Vikings.

-Two Detroit Lions quarterbacks have tied for the most interceptions thrown in one season in team history. In 1951, Hall of Famer Bobby Layne threw 23 interceptions in 12 games. Layne’s total was matched in 1979 when rookie Jeff Komlo threw 23 interceptions, though he did it in 14 games.

-In the second game of the 1950 NFL season, future Hall of Fame quarterback Bobby Layne rushed the ball 15 times for 118 yards.

-Hall of Famer Bobby Layne, who played for Detroit from 1950 to 1958, threw for more completions, attempts, yards, touchdowns, and interceptions as a Lion than any other player in team history.

-Lions quarterback Eric Hipple had his first 300 yard game in 1981. He would only have three total during his career, and his second one wouldn’t come until five seasons later in 1986.

-In Dan Orlovsky’s first career start in the NFL, a loss to the Minnesota Vikings, he dropped back to pass and accidentally stepped out of the back of his own end zone, giving the Vikings a safety and giving the Lions an eventual two point loss.

-No Detroit quarterback has rushed for more yards in one season than Greg Landry did in 1971 when he gained 530 yards while maintaining a 7.0 yards per carry average. His season included a 52 yard run.

-The Detroit Lions team record for most fumbles in one season is 17 and was set by quarterback Jon Kitna in 2007.

-Greg Landry has rushed for more career yards for the Lions than any other quarterback. He played from 1968 to 1978, and during that time he ran for 2,502 yards. In second place is Bobby Layne, followed by Rodney Peete, and then Tobin Rote.

-The most yards that Detroit Lions quarterback Scott Mitchell ever threw for in one game was 410. This happened in a 44-38 home win over the Minnesota Vikings in 1995. He also had four touchdown passes in the game that day.

-The highest any former Detroit Lions quarterback ranks on the NFL career passing yards list is Dave Krieg at 13th, although most of those yards were accumulated while he was with the Seahawks and a few other teams. Krieg is also the highest ranking former lions quarterback on the career touchdown list too.

-Rodney Peete played for five different teams during his career, but threw more touchdown passes as a Detroit Lions quarterback than he did for any of the other teams he played on.

-At the time he signed his rookie contract after being drafted in 2009, Matthew Stafford received more guaranteed money (41 million dollars) than anyone ever had in NFL history.

-In 1986, Lions quarterback Eric Hipple led the NFL in completion percentage with a rate of 63%.

-Greg Landry’s 84 yard touchdown pass to receiver Ron Jessie in 1973 in the Lions 24-10 loss to the Pittsburgh Steelers was the longest touchdown pass thrown in the NFL that season.

-Greg Landry played for the Lions from 1968 to 1978 and during that time had just two 300 yards games. The first one came in a 31-28 victory over the Green Bay Packers in 1971 and the second one came in a 17-16 loss to the New Orleans Saints in 1976.

-Karl Sweetan only played quarterback for the Detroit Lions for two seasons, in 1966 and 1967. In his two season with the team he managed to throw 14 touchdowns and 25 interceptions. He did though throw the longest touchdown pass in team history in the fourth quarter of a loss to the Baltimore Colts when he hooked up with Pat Studstill for 99 yards. This was also Sweetan’s first touchdown pass of his career.

-No Detroit quarterback has been sacked more in one season than Jon Kitna. In 2006, Kitna was sacked an amazing 63 times. The next closest on the list is the 55 sacks suffered by Greg Landry thirty years earlier in 1976.

-Scott Mitchell threw 79 touchdowns as a Lion, 35 of those (almost half) went to standout wide receiver Herman Moore.

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