There was no disappointing comeback this time as the Detroit Lions held off the New Orleans Saints for a win on Monday Night Football.
For a while, the Detroit Lions were making it look easy. Matthew Stafford was on point with contributions coming from all over on offense while the defense held the potent New Orleans Saints offense at bay.
The Lions put together four-straight touchdown drives between the middle of the first quarter and early in the third quarter. Stafford threw touchdown passes to Golden Tate (twice) and Michael Burton while Ameer Abdullah scored his first rushing touchdown since week one against the San Diego Chargers.
At 28-3, the Lions were rolling but then thing started to turn.
But the Lions didn’t collapse as they have at times earlier this season. Stafford led another touchdown drive, their fifth of the game, capped off by a one-yard touchdown run by Joique Bell to extend the lead to 35-20.
The Saints did have some life left in them and drew back within one score when Brees found Benjamin Watson for a short touchdown with just under two minutes remaining.
After an onside kick attempt was recovered by Calvin Johnson, Joique Bell ripped off a big run to get deep into Saints territory and take more time off the clock. The drive didn’t end in points because Matt Prater missed a field goal attempt but there was no Hail Mary this time around.
A short pass by Brees fell incomplete and a final play ended harmlessly with Tim Hightower tackled before he could attempt a lateral.
In terms of points on the scoreboard, the Lions have never had a better road performance in prime time.
It was an efficient night for Matthew Stafford whose 88% completion percentage (22-for-25) set a franchise single-game record. His 254 yards, three touchdowns and no interceptions helped him to a sterling 148.6 passer rating.
The Lions return to Ford Field to conclude the home portion of the 2015 season with a week 16 matchup against the San Francisco 49ers.