Stafford and Prater rally Lions past Bears 27-24

Posted at 4:07 PM, Nov 19, 2017
and last updated 2017-11-19 16:11:39-05

CHICAGO, Ill. – The Detroit Lions fell behind their longtime rivals, the Chicago Bears, 10-0 and 17-7 early before rallying behind quarterback Matthew Stafford and kicker Matt Prater for a 27-24 triumph at Soldier Field on Sunday afternoon.

The Lions entered the game as 3-point favorites over the Bears.

On Sunday, Detroit saw rookie quarterback Mitchell Trubisky drive the Bears steadily downfield from the outset, culminating in a 23-yard field goal by Connor Barth for a 3-0 edge with 8:21 to go in the opener. In Chicago’s 10th game, it marked the first time all season that the Bears had scored on their opening possession.

Making the 106th consecutive start of his career, Stafford immediately fumbled the ball away, and Chicago took a 10-0 advantage when Trubisky hit tight end Adam Shaheen with a 1-yard touchdown pass at the 3:23 mark of the initial period. That score stood until the opening break.

The second stanza began with Trubisky fumbling and Lions cornerback D.J. Hayden returning it 27 yards for a TD to slice the gap to 10-7 with exactly 14:00 showing on the clock.

But the Bears came right back with another score — this time a Jordan Howard 12-yard run for a 17-7 bulge with 8:30 left in the first half.

Stafford quickly retaliated by hitting Marvin Jones Jr. with a 28-yard scoring strike to trim the deficit to 17-14 with 5:17 showing on the clock. He then connected with Ameer Abdullah for a  2-yard touchdown to give Detroit its first lead at 21-17 with only 20 seconds left until intermission.

The second half saw the two teams trade possessions back and forth for the entire third quarter. The Lions began driving in the finale and ultimately scored when Prater booted a 27-yard field goal to go up 24-17 with 10:01 remaining in the contest.

Trubisky then marched the Bears downfield for their first points since midway through the second stanza — a 15-yard run around left end by Tarik Cohen to knot the score at 24-all at the 5:02 juncture of the finale.

Stafford then took over to drive Detroit the length of the field with time winding down. Prater eventually came on and nailed a 52-yard field goal with 1:35 to go for a 27-24 margin that stood until the final gun, after Barth missed a 46-yarder on the last play.

The Lions are now 6-4 entering a Thanksgiving home date with the Minnesota Vikings on Thursday afternoon.

The Bears now stand 3-7 going into a trip to meet the Philadelphia Eagles next Sunday afternoon at Lincoln Financial Field.