Stafford’s 4 TD lift Lions to 35-23 win over Cardinals

DETROIT (AP) — Matthew Stafford threw two of his four touchdown passes to rookie Kenny Golladay in the fourth quarter Sunday, helping the Detroit Lions rally to beat the Arizona Cardinals 35-23.

The Lions picked off three of Carson Palmer’s passes, returning one for a score. They also knocked David Johnson out of the game after forcing him to fumble in the third quarter Sunday.

Detroit set an NFL record last year by rallying to win eight games after trailing in the final quarter and opened this season with another comeback.

The Cardinals scored the first 10 points of the game and led 17-9 late in the third quarter before giving up 26 straight points.

Stafford’s first pass was returned 82 yards for a touchdown by Justin Bethel , but the player with the richest contract in the NFL bounced back. He was 29 for 41 yards for 292 yards and threw 45- and 10-yard TD passes to Golladay , along with short passes to Theo Riddick and Marvin Jones for scores.

A snap after Golladay ran past Bethel and fully extended to catch a long TD pass, Miles Killebrew intercepted Palmer’s pass and returned it for a score with 4:13 remaining.

Palmer was 27 of 48 for 269 yards with three interceptions, one shy of his career high, and threw a 1-yard TD pass to J.J. Nelson in the final minutes. Johnson, who led the league with 2,118 yards from scrimmage and 20 touchdowns last season, was limited to 23 yards rushing on 11 carries and had six receptions for 68 yards.

INJURIES

Cardinals: Johnson left with a wrist injury and starting left tackle D.J. Humphries had a knee injury.

Lions: Kasey Redfern’s NFL debut didn’t last long. The punter, filling in for injured Sam Martin, hurt his knee in the first quarter when he dropped a snap in the end zone, picked up the ball and tried to run it out. Placekicker Matt Prater punted the next four times for Detroit.

UP NEXT

Cardinals: Play at Indianapolis on Sept. 17.

Lions: Visit New York Giants on Sept. 18.