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The Lions beat Washington because Matthew Stafford is sneakily amazing at game-winning drives

Stafford got it done in crunch time.

The Detroit Lions came up with their third consecutive win on Sunday afternoon, knocking off a Washington team that had won four straight games.

The two teams both started off the scoring in the second quarter with a pair of field goals. We hadn’t seen our first touchdown until the third quarter, when Zach Zenner punched it in for the Lions to cap off an 86-yard drive.

Earlier in that drive, Josh Norman was defending Marvin Jones on a deep ball that the Lions completed for a 52-yard gain. Norman appeared to injure his shoulder, but ended up being diagnosed with a concussion. Norman did not return to the game.

Along with Norman’s injury, Bashaud Breeland suffered an ankle injury, but was able to return to the game. Despite this, there’s no doubting the Washington injuries at corner hurt them down the line.

The fourth quarter is when things got interesting in Detroit. A Matt Prater field goal made it a 13-3 game with just over 13 minutes remaining. That’s when Washington went on a charge and took over the game.

Kirk Cousins hit Robert Kelley for a 1-yard touchdown to make it 13-10 with 8:20 to play. Late in the game, Cousins ran 19 yards all the way to the end zone to put his team up 17-13.

With the game in his hands, Matthew Stafford led his team down the field with just over a minute left in the game. After a deep pass to Jones and a scramble of his own, Stafford found Anquan Boldin for what would be the game-winning touchdown pass.

Stafford is accustomed to making fourth quarter comebacks. Since 1960, Stafford is tied for 24th all time in them, with 20. With Sunday being his 21st, he is currently seventh among active players. He’s also had 12 game winning drives since 2014, the most in the NFL in that span.

The win puts the Lions at 4-3 on the season, and they’re looking in much better shape since their 1-3 start on the year.

Jones almost touched 100 yards receiving, continuing his amazing year since coming over from the Cincinnati Bengals.

Washington’s loss, combined with the Philadelphia Eagles’ win, gives the Eagles sole possession of second place in the NFC East, behind the Dallas Cowboys.