For the past two seasons, the Detroit Lions haven't scored in the final two minutes of regulation. In that time, the Lions have seen lead after lead fall away, more than any other team in the NFL.
They broke the trend Sunday. For only the second time under coach Matt Patricia, the Lions came from behind to win a game and in a 26-23 victory over the Arizona Cardinals scored in the final two minutes of regulation for the first time since at least the beginning of last season.
Matt Prater's 39-yard field goal did it, snapping an 11-game losing streak on the leg of the guy they've relied on so often since signing him in the 2014 season. It was his 15th career winning field goal.
Detroit did this by being the antithesis of what it has been so often during Patricia's tenure. Against Arizona, in a place where the Lions watched a lead fall away to a tie in the season opener last year, Detroit led two drives ending in Prater field goals to win a game for the first time since October of last season.
It's a win the franchise sorely needed after a blowout loss at Green Bay and a collapse against Chicago the first two weeks of the season.
Buy Adrian Peterson as Detroit's lead back: Can you say a Hall of Famer with the fifth-most rushing yards in NFL history had a breakout performance? Probably not, but you can buy on Peterson's usage against Arizona after 22 carries for 75 yards. Peterson signed with Detroit knowing he'd have some sort of role, and three games in it seems as if he's going to be the featured back. Peterson's yards per carry (3.4) wasn't great, but he was consistently effective and Detroit leaned on him. Plus, he passed Barry Sanders for No. 7 all time in carries.
Troubling trend: Penalties and mistakes hurt the Lions again. Detroit had a chance to get to the Arizona 1-yard line late in the fourth quarter on a Matthew Stafford pass to Marvin Hall only to have it wiped out by a penalty on Halapoulivaati Vaitai, pushing the Lions back in their own territory. False starts hurt momentum for Detroit on two other drives. They were similar issues to what the Lions dealt with in their losses to Chicago and Green Bay.
QB breakdown: Stafford was a bit shaky at points Sunday, although he wasn't helped by a rough performance by his offensive line, which allowed four sacks. And his team couldn't capitalize on three Kyler Murray interceptions that gave Detroit good field position. But in the fourth quarter, Stafford showed a little bit of his old self, leading the Lions down the field in the final four minutes for the win. He finished with 22 of 31 completions for 270 yards, two touchdowns and no interceptions. He also led fourth-quarter comeback No. 29 of his career and had his 35th game-winning drive.
Silver lining: It wasn't all good for cornerback Jeff Okudah on Sunday -- there were some missed tackles and matching up against DeAndre Hopkins (10 catches, 137 yards) for any length of time is never an easy task. But there were flashes of improvement from the No. 3 overall pick. He had his first career interception by breaking on a Murray throw intended for Hopkins that was a move a seasoned pro would make. He also was good in run support with two good reads on tackles for loss.