From Chris Brown, Lead Journalist ( buffalobills.com ) The Bills did not make it easy, but Buffalo’s defense was able to preserve enough of an eight-point lead to post the first victory of the Chan Gailey era outlasting Detroit 14-12. The win ended Buffalo’s eight-game losing streak to start the season and dropped Detroit to their 25th straight defeat on the road stretching back to the 2008 season.
Nursing an eight-point lead (14-6) with 3:45 remaining, Buffalo had 88 yards of field to defend. Detroit converted three fourth downs the third of which went for a 20-yard touchdown pass from Shaun Hill to Calvin Johnson with 14 seconds left pulled Detroit to within two, but Hill could find no one open on the two point conversion attempt allowing Buffalo to escape with a 14-12 win, their first of the season.
Buffalo tried to build on their 11-point lead at the end of the third quarter, but Rian Lindell’s 41-yard attempt with 10 seconds left in the third sailed wide of the right goal post to keep it 14-3.
Detroit followed with a field goal drive of their own, but kicker Dave Rayner, signed to replace the injured Jason Hanson, also pushed a 49-yard attempt wide right early in the fourth.
The Lions offense did not get in sync until midway through the fourth quarter. Shaun Hill directed a seven-play 61-yard scoring drive with a 29-yard hook up with Calvin Johnson putting Detroit in field goal range. Rayner was true on his second 40-plus yard attempt, putting a 45-yarder through the uprights to make it a one score game with 5:53 remaining (14-6).
Buffalo’s offense came out charged up in the second half taking the opening drive of the third quarter 73 yards to pay dirt to balloon their lead to 14-3. Fred Jackson accounted for 62 of the 73 yards on the drive.
His two biggest plays book ended the drive as he had a 39-yard run on the first play of the series to move Buffalo to the Detroit 34. Five plays later, Jackson took a shovel pass from Ryan Fitzpatrick and found day light along the near sideline to score on a 16-yard play for the score.
For Fitzpatrick it was his 10th straight game with at least one touchdown pass, marking the longest streak for a Bills quarterback since Drew Bledsoe’s 10-game streak in 2002.
A game that was scoreless through the first quarter changed on a turnover. Buffalo got just its second interception of the season when Dwan Edwards picked off a pass deflected by Donte Whitner near midfield. Ryan Fitzpatrick and Lee Evans hooked up for a 43-yard pass play down to the Lions’ seven-yard line and two Fred Jackson rushes got the ball in the end zone, with his last being a one-yard touchdown run for a 7-0 Bills lead early in the second quarter.
The scored stayed that way until the final minute of the half, when a Stefan Logan punt return to the Bills 29, set up of the Lions offense to put points on the board with 39 seconds left in the second quarter.
With seven seconds left the Lions tried to reach the end zone on a 3rd-and-4 at the Bills seven-yard line, but a Shaun Hill pass attempt to Calvin Johnson was off the mark and broken up by Leodis McKelvin to bring up fourth down.
For more on the win, go to "news links" at wkbw.com...and watch for Sports Director Jeff Russo and Shawn Stepner on Channel 7's Eyewitness News.