The Norman Transcript

Sports

December 23, 2012

Falcons fly past Lions

(Continued)

DETROIT —

The Falcons led 21-3 at halftime before letting the Lions pull within five points early in the fourth quarter.

Ryan dashed Detroit’s comeback hopes.

Facing intense pressure, he converted a third down in Atlanta territory with a pass to White, picked on rookie cornerback Jonte Green by throwing to Jones to pick up more first downs and found Tony Gonzalez open to convert another third down to set up his fourth TD pass.

Matthew Stafford was clearly trying to get the ball to Johnson on the next drive and cornerback Asante Samuel figured that out, stepping in front of the receiver for an interception to set up Bryant’s field goal.

Atlanta running back Michael Turner was tackled in the end zone, after Detroit turned the ball over on downs, to give the Lions two meaningless points.

Johnson began the night 182 yards receiving away from breaking Rice’s NFL single-season mark of 1,848 yards receiving set in 1995 with San Francisco.

Johnson was 4 yards away from Rice’s record when Detroit kicked a field goal early in the fourth quarter to cut its deficit to five points.

Ryan went deep to White for the first score, connecting with him on a 44-yard TD strike with 5:50 left in the first quarter. Ryan threw a short pass to him early in the second quarter and the standout receiver did the rest on a 39-yard sprint down the sideline.

Ryan put his third TD pass where only Julio Jones could catch it a corner of the end zone, and he did on a 16-yard reception that put Atlanta up 21-3.

Detroit didn’t give up, a game after being accused of doing just that in a 38-10 loss at Arizona.

Jason Hanson kicked a second field goal late in the first half to make it 21-6.

After Atlanta opened the second half with a three-and-out drive, Mikel Leshoure scored on a 1-yard run midway through the third quarter to pull the Lions with eight points.

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