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Sunday
Oct262014

Falcons Collapse in London, Lose to Lions 22-21

Leon Halip/Getty Images(LONDON) -- The Atlanta Falcons led at halftime over the Lions 21-0. When they looked up at the clock as the game was over, the score favored Detroit 22-21.

The Falcons suffered a defensive breakdown with 4:38 to go in the third quarter as Golden Tate ran past two Atlanta defenders and caught a 59-yard bomb from Matt Stafford, closing Atlanta's early lead to 21-10.

On the ensuing drive, with pressure in his face quarterback Matt Ryan threw a terrible interception to Lions cornerback Cassius Vaughn. 

"In my mind, that kind of cost us the ball game," Ryan said. "I was trying to throw the ball away and I never saw him."

The Falcons defense remained stought and held the Lions to a field goal. The Lions would score another touchdown in the fourth quarter when Matt Stafford found Theo Riddick on a five yard completion. The score was now 21-19 after Detroit missed a two point attempt to tie the game.

The Falcons would try to run the clock out with a poorly executed drive. With less than two minutes to go the Falcons committed a holding penalty that would stop the clock at 1:55.  On the next play, Matt Ryan attempted a screen to Julio Jones, who dropped the ball.  Atlanta would punt the ball inside Detroit's ten yard line.

Detroit would march down the field with little resistance.  Settling at Atlanta's 25 yard line, Detroit lined up for a field goal and newly signed kick Matt Prater pushed the ball wide right.  Atlanta ran on the field in celebration only to find out a whistle had blown. The Lions were called for a delay of game penalty: the kick was negated.  Prater got a second chance and drilled it through the uprights.

"That's football. He missed it and there was a delay of game penalty," Mike Smith, Falcons head coach said after the loss. "Thought we were going to squeak one out. Obviously we didn't."


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