DETROIT (Michigan News Source) – Two years straight now the Thanksgiving Day Classic at Ford Field has been decided by a last second field goal. Both times Detroit’s been on the losing end. With two seconds left, Buffalo’s Tyler Bass nailed a 45-yard field goal for the win over the Lions, 28-25.
“I was proud of our guys. We fought, took it all the way to the end and had an opportunity but fell short,” said head coach Dan Campbell. “I am proud of them and the way we played. We are still getting better but this still stinks.”
In a game where a safety and a missed extra point become a big difference, Detroit’s magic looked like it was going to take over again. Jared Goff took Detroit 42-yards down the field to set up a 51-yard Michael Badgley field goal that should have set up overtime. Badgley sailed through the kick edging just by the uprights to tie the game at 25 with 23 seconds left.
Just 23 seconds left. That is all it takes for an All-Pro quarterback to put his team in position to win the game against one of the worst defense in the NFL. Taking over with 23 seconds, Josh Allen’s first pass went for 36-yards to the 39-yard line with 16 seconds left. He then went for three-yards on a run and then followed for another nine-yard run to the 27-yard line. A timeout stopped the clock with seven seconds to set up Bass’ game winning field goal.
Goff finished the day with 240 yards passing going 23-of-37 with two touchdowns. Jamaal Williams was the top rusher with 66 yards on 18 carries and one touchdown. Amon-Ra St. Brown continued to be one of the top receivers in the NFL going for 122 yards on nine receptions and one touchdown.
Williams gave Detroit a 7-0 lead at 6:44 in the first quarter on a two-yard run. Buffalo tied it up with 1:58 left on a 19-yard pass from Allen to Isaiah McKenzie. The Bills then scored first in the second quarter on an Allen three-yard run at the 7:55 mark for the 14-7 lead.
In a 15-play 76-yard drive that took six minutes off the clock, St. Brown caught a one-yard pass from Goff to tie the game at 14. Buffalo’s Bass then gave them the lead, 17-14, on a 47-yard field goal as time expired for the first half.
There was only one score in the third quarter when Goff was sacked in the end zone at the 9:04 mark. Buffalo’s Ed Oliver recorded the two-points on the safety for a 19-14 advantage. DJ Chark was on the receiving end of the go-ahead touchdown in the fourth quarter just over a minute in (13:47) on a one-yard reception from Goff. D’Andre Swift ran in the two-point conversion to make it 22-19.
Buffalo rallied and went 90-yards in 6:19 to retake the lead, 25-22, on a Stefon Diggs five-yard reception. Bass missed the extra point that left the door open for Detroit to tie the game. The Lions did just that with 23 seconds left before Buffalo’s game winning field goal with two seconds left.
“I told the team after the game that we belong (with Buffalo) and our team knows that and they do know that. We had an opportunity, they earned that opportunity, we just didn’t close it out. Those guys (Buffalo) made the plays and that’s credit to them over there. I do feel growth from our team and I do feel us getting better,” said Campbell.
Detroit will next play on Sunday, December 4, at 1:00 p.m. hosting Jacksonville at Ford Field.