NFL

Jared Goff Leads Lions To First Playoff Win In 32 Years, Over Matthew Stafford, Rams

Jan 14, 2024, 9:56 PM

Jared-Goff-Detroit-Lions-NFL...

Matthew Stafford #9 of the Los Angeles Rams hugs Jared Goff #16 of the Detroit Lions following the game in the NFC Wild Card Playoffs at Ford Field on January 14, 2024 in Detroit, Michigan. Detroit defeated Los Angeles 24-23. (Photo by Nic Antaya/Getty Images)

(Photo by Nic Antaya/Getty Images)

DETROIT (AP) — Jared Goff threw for a touchdown and completed a game-sealing first down against the team that cast him away, and the Detroit Lions won a playoff game for the first time in 32 years, beating Matthew Stafford and the Los Angeles Rams 24-23 on Sunday night.

Detroit downs Los Angeles in NFC Wild Card

The Lions (13-5) ended a nine-game postseason losing streak — the longest in NFL history — that dated to a victory over Dallas on Jan. 5, 1992. They lost a home playoff game two years later and hadn’t hosted one since.

Detroit will have two home playoff games for the first time in franchise history, hosting either Tampa Bay or Philadelphia in the divisional round next Sunday.

The Rams (10-8) had a chance to take the lead late in the fourth quarter, but Detroit’s defense held. A holding penalty pushed Los Angeles out of field goal range, and Stafford — the Lions’ longtime quarterback who won a Super Bowl after he was traded to the Rams — threw incomplete on fourth down.

On the first play after the two-minute warning, Goff hit Amon-Ra St. Brown for 11 yards, allowing the Lions to run out the clock — much to the delight of long-suffering fans who witnessed the franchise’s second postseason victory since winning the 1957 NFL title.

Against the franchise he once led to the Super Bowl, Goff was 22 of 27 for 277 yards and threw a 2-yard touchdown pass to rookie tight end Sam LaPorta that put Detroit ahead 21-10 midway through the second quarter. The Lions acquired Goff and a pair of first-round picks for Stafford three years ago.

Stafford, who played most of the game with a bandaged and bloody hand after he slammed it into a defender’s helmet, finished 25 of 36 for 367 yards with two touchdowns. Record-breaking rookie Puka Nacua had nine receptions for 181 yards.

David Montgomery and rookie Jahmyr Gibbs each had a rushing touchdown for the Lions, and St. Brown had seven receptions for 110 yards.

The Lions scored on their first two drives to take a 14-3 lead.

The Rams got within 21-17 at halftime thanks to Stafford’s 50-yard touchdown pass to Nacua and his 38-yarder to Tutu Atwell.

Michael Badgley’s season-long, 54-yard field goal gave the Lions a seven-point lead midway through the third quarter.

The Rams moved the ball at will for much of the game, but had to settle for short field goals by Brett Maher on drives late in the third and midway through the fourth to get within 24-23 with 8:10 remaining.

Stafford has made a career of fourth-quarter comebacks, a fact the fans at Ford Field were well aware of. With a chance to put the Rams ahead for the first time, he led a drive to the Detroit 34, but the Lions’ defense forced him backwards from there.

Detroit took over with 4:07 to go, and Los Angeles had only one timeout left after calling two earlier in the half to cope with a crowd as loud as a blaring siren. That allowed Goff to take a knee after his throw to St. Brown.

The Lions started strong and looked as fired up as their long-suffering fans, with rapper and Motor City native Eminem in the house along with Hall of Famers Barry Sanders and Calvin Johnson.

The fans showered Stafford with boos when he ran onto the field, where he posed for a pregame photo with his wife and their daughters, and chanted “Jar-ed Goff! Jar-ed Goff” for the Lions’ third-year quarterback.

INJURIES

Rams: Stafford’s right hand was taped up after it was cut in the second quarter and he walked off the field slowly after getting hit by two Lions late in the third. … RB Kyren Williams had a hand injury in the fourth quarter. … TE Tyler Higbee limped off the field, favoring his right leg, after taking a low hit in the fourth. … S Jordan Fuller, the team’s second-leading tackler, was ruled out after being listed as questionable with an ankle injury.

Lions: WR/KR Kalif Raymond, TE James Mitchell and CB Jerry Jacobs were inactive.

Download the new & improved KSL Sports app from Utah’s sports leader. You can stream live radio, video and stay up to date on all of your favorite teams.

NFL

Richard-Sherman-Thursday-Night-Football-NFL-Prime-Video...

Frank Sumrall, Seattle Sports

Reports: Richard Sherman Expected In Court Monday After DUI Arrest

Former Seahawks star Richard Sherman was arrested for suspicion of DUI on Saturday, the Washington State Patrol (WSP) confirmed.

7 hours ago

Jordan-Love-Green-Bay-Packers-NFL...

Kyle Ireland

Top Plays From Jordan Love During First Season As Packers’ QB1

Former USU standout Jordan Love seized his opportunity to be an NFL starting quarterback and became a rising star for the Packers in 2023.

8 hours ago

Garett-Bolles-Broncos...

Michelle Bodkin

Garett Bolles In Attendance For Utah Basketball Game Against Colorado

The Runnin' Utes had Utah football alum Garett Bolles and his family in attendance for their game against the Colorado Buffaloes.

1 day ago

golden richards...

JOHN COON Associated Press

Former BYU, Dallas Cowboys Receiver Golden Richards Dies At 73

Golden Richards, the former Dallas Cowboys receiver died Friday of congestive heart failure at his home in Murray. He was 73.

1 day ago

NFL-Scouting-Combine-Logo...

Kyle Ireland

How To Watch Local Players At 2024 NFL Scouting Combine

Multiple local college football products received invitations to participate in the NFL Scouting Combine as part of the pre-draft process.

3 days ago

Kiel-McDonald-Utah-Utes-Football...

Kyle Ireland

Report: Chargers Hiring Former Utah Coach Kiel McDonald To Lead Running Backs

The Chargers reportedly plan to hire former Utah running back coach Kiel McDonald to the same position on Jim Harbaugh's coaching staff.

4 days ago

Sponsored Articles

ksl-sports-newsletter...

KSL Sports

KSL Sports Newsletter: Sign Up Now

Sign up today for the KSL Sports newsletter. Get the latest Utah sports news delivered to your inbox.

...

KSL Sports

Jazz Notes Newsletter: Sign Up Now

Sign up today for the Jazz Notes newsletter. Get insider analysis, game recaps and opportunities to win tickets!

Follow @kslsports...

The Road Home Mediathon 2023

The KSL Sports Zone and KSLSports.com are proud to support the all-day Mediathon 2023 at the Road Home, an annual tradition to raise money and other essential items for the Road Home, a Homeless Shelter.

3 kids wearing real salt lake jerseys smiling...

Real Salt Lake

6 Reasons You Need to Experience a RSL Matchday

RSL Games are a great way to spend time with your family with fun activities, good food, and traditions you can only experience at the field.

High angle view of the beautiful Rose Bowl Stadium...

KSL Digital Sales

How to Prepare for the 2023 Rose Bowl

Everything you need to know to plan your 2023 Rose Bowl trip in Pasadena, California. This year, the Utes will face Penn State.

Jordan-Clarkson-Utah-Jazz...

KSL Digital Sales

Notable Moments From The Utah Jazz Season… So Far

At the beginning of the season, the Utah Jazz were second to last. Now they rank in the top 10 teams in the Western Conference.

Jared Goff Leads Lions To First Playoff Win In 32 Years, Over Matthew Stafford, Rams