INDIANAPOLIS - Same Old Lio…
The Detroit Lions blew an 18-point first-half lead in their season opener for the second straight year, then survived a missed extra point by Matt Prater and a late touchdown drive by Andrew Luck to beat the Indianapolis Colts today at Lucas Oil Stadium, 39-35.
Prater, who missed the point-after attempt wide right after Theo Riddick scored his second touchdown of the game with 4:04 to play, made a 43-yard field with 4 seconds left to send the Lions to victory.
The Lions scored their final two points on a safety with no time on the clock after the Colts were called for an illegal forward pass in the end zone while trying to lateral their way downfield on the kickoff.
The Lions jumped out to a 21-3 second-quarter lead – the same score they led the San Diego Chargers by in last year's opener, when they lost 33-28 – but had to hold on to win.
Luck drove the Colts 74 yards in eight plays after Riddick’s touchdown, and hit tight end Jack Doyle on a 6-yard touchdown pass with 37 seconds to play to put the Colts ahead, 35-34.
The Lions started the ensuing possession at the 25-yard line, and Matthew Stafford completed three straight passes to drive the ball downfield.
Riddick caught a check-down for 19 yards in the middle of the field, then Stafford found Eric Ebron for 9 yards and Marvin Jones for 22 to move the Lions into field-goal range.
After throwing the ball away on first-and-10 from the 25 with 12 seconds left, the Lions sent Prater on to atone for his miss.
Stafford completed 31 of 39 passes for 340 yards and three touchdowns.
Luck was 31 of 47 passing for 385 yards and four touchdowns for the Colts.
The Lions moved the ball with ease against a beat-up Colts defense in the first half, scoring touchdowns on drives of 80, 82 and 75 yards.
Riddick scored the first touchdown of the year on a career-long 21-yard run, following a block by Ebron off left tackle and into the end zone.
The Lions went three-and-out on their next possession, then mounted back-to-back scoring drives.
Stafford converted three third downs on a seven-minute, 82-yard touchdown drive, one with his legs and two with his arms, before rookie Dwayne Washington plunged in from 1 yard out to give the Lions a 14-0 lead.
Adam Vinatieri answered with a 50-yard field goal for the Colts, before Stafford hit Ebron for a 6-yard touchdown between two defenders.
The Colts scored once more before the half, on a 2-yard touchdown pass from Luck to wideout Donte Moncrief, as the Lions led 21-10 at halftime.
Riddick finished with 45 yards rushing on seven carries and five catches for 63 yards for the Lions. Ameer Abdullah 120 total yards rushing and receiving and one touchdown.