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Megatron's big day lifts Lions past Cowboys

Monday - 10/28/2013, 5:10am  ET

The Associated Press

For all of Calvin Johnson's 329 yards, the Detroit Lions needed another foot or so.

Matthew Stafford provided it, capping a stunning comeback win over the Dallas Cowboys.

Stafford's 1-yard lunge over a pile of linemen with 12 seconds left, moments after Johnson got the Lions to the brink of the goal line, gave Detroit a 31-30 victory Sunday. Stafford threw a 22-yard pass to Johnson, who had the second-most yards receiving in NFL history, to set up his winning score.

The final play seemed destined for a spike before the Dallas native fooled the team he grew up supporting.

"I was yelling that I was going to spike the ball," Stafford said. "But their linebackers were just standing there."

So he leaped instead, extending the ball over the goal line.

The Lions (5-3) overcame four giveaways without forcing a turnover, becoming the first team to do that and win since New England did against Miami in 2007, according to STATS. Dallas fell to 4-4, unable to handle Megatron.

"He had his way," cornerback Brandon Carr said. "And, we couldn't find a way to keep him from rolling."

Still rolling is Kansas City, the league's only unbeaten team. The Chiefs (8-0) took Cleveland 23-17.

Also Sunday, it was Denver 45, Washington 21; New Orleans 35, Buffalo 17; New England 27, Miami 17; Green Bay 44, Minnesota 31; Cincinnati 49, the New York Jets 9; San Francisco 42, Jacksonville 10; Oakland 21, Pittsburgh 18; the New York Giants 15, Philadelphia 7; and Arizona 27, Atlanta 13.

On Monday night, Seattle (6-1) is at St. Louis (3-4).

The week's action began Thursday night when Carolina beat winless Tampa Bay 31-13.

Off this week were Baltimore (3-4), Houston (2-5), Tennessee (3-4), Chicago (4-3), San Diego (4-3) and Indianapolis (5-2).



At Detroit, Johnson's total trailed only the 336 yards receiving Flipper Anderson had for the Los Angeles Rams against New Orleans on Nov. 26, 1989, in a game that went into overtime.

"It was crazy," he said. "We had a lot of one-on-one coverage today, and we were able to take advantage and hit some deep balls. Matt made some great throws to me."

Tony Romo was 14 of 30, failing to complete half his passes for the first time since 2009, for 206 yards without a turnover. He hit Dez Bryant for TDs of 5 and 50 yards, but Bryant was angry after the game.

"Everybody knows that we should have won this game," Bryant said. "A game like this -- man, it kills you."


At Kansas City, Mo., the Chiefs became the first to go 8-0 the season after having the league's worst record. They've allowed 17 or fewer points in every game, tying another mark.

Alex Smith threw for 225 yards and two touchdowns, and the Chiefs kept stopping the Browns (3-5) down the stretch. They forced a turnover on downs with just over two minutes left, and Ryan Succop kicked his third field goal in the closing seconds to seal the victory.

"We love it," Smith said. "You want the stages to get bigger. That's why you put all the work in. You want this opportunity. You want that honor."

Jason Campbell, starting in place of the ineffective Brandon Weeden, threw for 293 yards and two touchdowns for the Browns.


Peyton Manning overcame four turnovers and host Denver scored the last 38 points against former Broncos coach Mike Shanahan and his new team. Manning finished with 354 yards and four touchdown passes to offset his three interceptions and lost fumble.

His first two turnovers led to points that gave the Redskins (2-5) a 21-7 lead early in the third quarter. From there, Manning led the Broncos (7-1) on two long scoring drives, then got the go-ahead score on a 35-yard touchdown pass to Knowshon Moreno.

Manning has 2,919 yards passing this season, the most through the first eight games in NFL history. So is Denver's 343 points.

"With Peyton," Redskins safety Jordan Pugh said, "the points are always there."

Robert Griffin III finished with 132 yards passing, one score and two interceptions for Washington before hurting his left knee. He said he was OK after the game.


At New Orleans, Drew Brees passed for five touchdowns and 332 yards. Tight end Jimmy Graham played after missing practice most of the week with a left foot injury and scored on 13- and 15-yard passes over the middle, powering through tackles at the goal line both times.

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