Detroit, MI (SportsNetwork.com) – Dan Carpenter hit a 58-yard field goal with
just four seconds to play and the Buffalo Bills pulled off a 17-14 win over
the Detroit Lions.
Kyle Orton, making his first start for Buffalo in place of a benched EJ
Manuel, threw for 308 yards and a touchdown on 30-of-43 passing with an
interception for the Bills (3-2), who snapped a two-game losing streak.
Matthew Stafford went 18-for-31 for 221 yards, one touchdown and one
interception for the Lions (3-2), who had won their previous two games. Golden
Tate caught seven passes for 134 yards and a score.
After Alex Henery missed his third field goal attempt of the game, a 50-yarder
that wasn’t even close, the Bills had the ball at their own 40 with 21 seconds
The first snap saw Sammy Watkins bobble a pass, but he held on to it for a 20-
yard gain. The Bills then called their last timeout and following an
incompletion, Carpenter lined up for a 58-yarder and hit it through with four
Detroit’s final play saw the team try using the lateral after a reception by
Corey Fuller, but it went nowhere as the Bills recovered the loose ball for
Detroit scored on its third touch of the game after getting the ball back at
its own 43. A 28-yard catch-and-run from Reggie Bush got the ball to the
Buffalo 9, and two plays later Stafford hit Tate in the left side of the end
zone for a 7-0 lead with five seconds left in the first quarter.
Buffalo’s ensuing touch saw the Lions add to their lead, as Rashean Mathis
stepped up on a route for a clean pick and a 41-yard return into the end zone
for a 14-0 lead.
The Bills’ offense continued to stuggle with another quick three-and-out, but
the defense came up with a big play as a Stafford pass saw Bush unable to come
up the ball, tipping it into the hands of Stephon Gilmore for the
Buffalo started the drive near midfield and got down to the Detroit 17, but a
bad snap on third down forced the team to settle for a 45-yard field goal from
Carpenter to make it a 14-3 game with under seven minutes to play in the half.
Detroit got in scoring position on the opening touch of the second half, but
Henery booted a 44-yard field goal attempt off the right upright and it stayed
Buffalo, though, was unable to take advantage of the good field position, as
Carpenter knocked a 50-yard attempt of his own off the left upright and out.
The next Lions drive ended the same as the previous, as Henery missed a 47-
yard field goal attempt well to the left.
Buffalo again had a short field to work with, and was able to cut into its
deficit with a 25-yard field goal from Carpenter to make it a 14-6 game with
1:23 to play in the third.
The Bills’ next drive saw them march down the field, with the big play coming
on a 3rd-and-10 as Orton floated a deep ball down the right sideline into the
hands of Marquise Goodwin, who came down with the grab for a 42-yard gain to
the Detroit 4. Two plays later, Orton’s soft toss into the end zone was pulled
down by Chris Gragg for a 2-yard score. Fred Jackson converted the 2-point
attempt with a run up the middle and it was a tie game with 9:23 to play.
Detroit kickers have missed eight field goals this season, which leads the
league … Detroit wide receiver Calvin Johnson left the game early in the
third quarter after his lone reception of the game with an apparent left leg
injury. He was listed as questionable coming into the game with an ankle
injury … Buffalo special teamer Ron Brooks was taken to a local hospital
with a neck injury after being carted off the field with a brace on his neck
… Former Detroit head coach Jim Schwartz returned to Detroit for the first
time since getting fired after last season as he is now the defensive
coordinator for Buffalo … Watkins totaled seven catches for 87 yards …
Detroit plays at Minnesota next week … Buffalo hosts New England next week.