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NFL: Stafford lifts Lions to 37-25 win over Redskins

By Larry Lage

Associated Press

Published: Sunday, Oct. 31 2010 2:42 p.m. MDT

DETROIT — Matthew Stafford made the most out of his home debut this season.

Stafford's fourth touchdown pass converted a fourth down with 3:12 left and the Detroit Lions scored nine points in 14 seconds to turn a closely contested game into a 37-25 win over the Washington Redskins on Sunday.

The Redskins (4-4) turned the ball over on downs after Calvin Johnson's career-high third score. Washington coach Mike Shanahan then put Rex Grossman in for an apparently healthy Donovan McNabb, he fumbled on his first play and Ndamukong Suh returned it for a TD.

The Lions (2-5) were trailing late in the game with Alphonso Smith stepped in front of McNabb's pass at the Redskins 26 to set up the go-ahead TD.

Stafford played for the first time since Week 1 when he separated his right shoulder on a sack at Chicago.

He was 26 of 45 for 212 yards with four TDs and an interception, playing in his 12th game after missing 11 games because of injuries.

McNabb was 17 of 30 for 210 yards with a TD and an interception and ran for 45 yards.

He started the game without running back Clinton Portis behind him, then lost Ryan Torain in the first half with a hamstring injury.

Rookie Keiland Williams scored a go-ahead TD early in the fourth quarter and Brandon Banks returned a kickoff 96 yards to put the Redskins ahead again midway through the quarter, but not even the NFL's hottest cornerback could stop Stafford and Johnson from putting on a show.

DeAngelo Hall did get the best of the matchup early in the game — leaping in front of Johnson for an interception in the end zone — but Johnson ended up with nine receptions for 101 yards and three scores.

The Lions had a balanced offense with Kevin Smith and Jahvid Best combining for 99 yards rushing and Suh-led defense that made McNabb uncomfortable from a stumbling start to a benching finish.

McNabb watched the end of the game from the sideline with a baseball cap, getting benched for just the second time in his career. The other time was two years ago when he was playing for Philadelphia at Baltimore.

After a sluggish and scoreless first quarter, long returns set up the first touchdown for both teams.

Detroit's Stefan Long brought a punt back 71 yards and Johnson caught a pass and dragged Hall about 5 yards for a TD.

Banks returned the ensuing kick to the Lions 46 and McNabb took advantage with a 36-yard run and a 6-yard pass to Torain to make it 7-all.

While the Lions looked fresh coming off their open week, the Redskins will have a lot of problems to ponder during their upcoming bye.

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