Lions top Buccaneers
Lions 34, Buccaneers 17: Matthew Stafford passed for 311 yards and three touchdowns as host Detroit rolled to victory.Calvin Johnson caught eight passes for 158 yards and a score as the Lions (9-4) moved one-half game behind Green Bay in the NFC North and bolstered their chances in the wild-card race.
Joique Bell scored two touchdowns and the defense forced three turnovers, with safeties James Ihedigbo and Glover Quin each recording an interception and linebacker DeAndre Levy notching two sacks.Josh McCown was 20-of-39 for 250 yards and two touchdown passes to rookie Mike Evans for the Buccaneers (2-11) but was intercepted twice and sacked six times.
Vincent Jackson had season highs of 10 receptions and 159 yards as Tampa Bay lost its third straight contest.Detroit led by seven points at halftime and increased its advantage to 27-10 in the third quarter on a 23-yard field goal by Matt Prater and Stafford’s 10-yard scoring toss to Joseph Fauria.
The Buccaneers got within 10 on Evans’ 26-yard TD catch with 12:52 remaining in the fourth before Bell caught a deflected pass and turned it into a 5-yard score to restore the Lions’ 17-point lead.
Stafford threw a 6-yard scoring pass to Johnson with 2:57 left in the opening quarter and Bell’s 1-yard run with 6:01 remaining in the first half gave Detroit a 14-3 lead. Prater’s 46-yard field goal stretched the advantage before McCown’s 5-yard TD toss to Evans with five seconds left in the half cut the deficit to 17-10.
GAME NOTEBOOK: Johnson has topped 150 receiving yards 14 times in his career. … Buccaneers LB Lavonte David exited in the third quarter with a concussion. … Lions RB Reggie Bush returned from an ankle injury but had just 26 yards on eight carries while Bell totaled 133 yards (83 rushing, 50 receiving).