Detroit Lions Beat Indianapolis Colts 39-35 in Wild Regular Season Opener
Detroit Lions kicker Matt Prater went from goat to hero Sunday afternoon, kicking the game-winning field goal just minutes after missing an extra point against the Indianapolis Colts.
The Lions got out to an early lead against the Colts, putting seven points on the board with less than five minutes to play in the first quarter, thanks to a Theo Riddick touchdown run.
It was more Lions in the second quarter, as both Dwayne Washington and Eric Ebron scored touchdowns, helping give the team a 21-10 lead going into halftime.
The Colts struck first in the second half, scoring a touchdown and adding a two-point conversion in the third quarter to trim the Lions' lead to 21-18. The Lions, however, added an Ameer Abdullah touchdown to give themselves a ten-point cushion heading into the fourth quarter, 28-18.
The Colts quickly tied the game with an Adam Vinatieri field goal and a Jack Coyle touchdown catch. The Lions responded with another Theo Riddick touchdown, but Prater missed the extra point, meaning their lead was only six, 34-28.
Quarterback Andrew Luck marched the Colts down the field and hit Coyle again for a six-yard touchdown pass. Vinatieri tacked on the extra point and the Colts lead 35-34 with just 37 seconds left to play, but the Lions still had a shot.
Quarterback Matthew Stafford was able to get the team into field goal range, giving Prater the opportunity to redeem himself, which is exactly what he did. Prater hit a 43-yard field goal to give the Lions a 37-35 lead. The team added a safety at the end of the game to win 39-35.
Stafford had an impressive start to the 2016 season, throwing for 340 yards and three touchdowns in the win. The Lions also rushed for 116 yards, including 63 from second-year back Abdullah.
The Lions will head back to Detroit for their home opener next week against the Tennessee Titans, who lost to the Minnesota Vikings 25-16 in their season opener.