Ed Murray kicked three field goals and Doug English tackled Jerry Golsteyn for a safety, giving the Detroit Lions an 11-0 victory over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers today.
The Lions, winning their season opener for the fourth straight year, scored first midway through the first period when English dropped Golsteyn in his own end zone, and Murray added field goals from 29, 48 and 38 yards.
William Gay, a sixth-year pro from Southern Cal, harassed Tampa Bay quarterbacks Golsteyn and Jack Thompson all afternoon, recording 5 1/2 of the Lions' seven sacks for 39 yards in losses.
"We didn't want to give them a lot of time to pick us apart," Gay said. "I was around the quarterback all day. I had more sacks today than I've had in a lifetime."
Golsteyn, who beat out Thompson for the starting job left vacant by the departure of Doug Williams to the U.S. Football League, played the first half and Thompson the second. Neither was effective, however, as an offensive line decimated by injury had trouble containing the Lions' pass rush.
"We were inept and there's no excuse for it," said Tampa Bay Coach John McKay. "The quarterbacks didn't look that great, but it's a tough life to lead back there when you have two seconds to throw."
Tampa's Bill Capece attempted a 57-yard field goal as time ran out in the first period, but was short and wide right.