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Vikings Stop Lions in Their Tracks, 24-10

November 10, 1986| From Times Wire Services

PONTIAC, Mich. — Minnesota Coach Jerry Burns was determined not to be burned twice.

In the first game of the season, Burns' debut as an NFL head coach after 19 years as an assistant, the Vikings allowed Detroit fullback James Jones to run for 174 yards, and the Lions won, 13-10.

In the rematch Sunday, Minnesota held the entire Detroit team to just 81 yards rushing and won easily, 24-10.

"I think our defense played the run pretty well," said Burns, obviously pleased after watching the Vikings return one interception for a touchdown and recover three of five Detroit fumbles.

Minnesota's Tommy Kramer, the NFC's top-rated quarterback, had to be patient against the Detroit defense, but it paid off as he completed 24 of 39 passes for 284 yards and a touchdown.

"It was boring," Kramer said. "Detroit just sits back in the 3-4 defense and plays zone. You just got to take what they give you."

Joey Browner, who returned an intercepted pass 39 yards for a touchdown, led the Vikings' defense.

The victory improved Minnesota's record to 6-4, while the Lions, whose losing streak reached four games, fell to 3-7.

Browner's touchdown and a 24-yard field goal by Chuck Nelson gave Minnesota a 10-0 first-quarter lead which held up through the remainder of the half.

After the Lions scored on a 10-yard pass from Eric Hipple to Jimmie Giles to narrow it to 10-7 with 10:33 left in the third quarter, Kramer took over, driving the Vikings 83 yards to a touchdown in only five plays.

All five plays were Kramer completions, with the score coming on an 11-yard pass to Anthony Carter. Carter, who had a 49-yard catch on the play before the score, finished with 111 yards on 5 catches.

Eddie Murray kicked a 35-yard field goal for Detroit with 1:44 remaining in the third quarter, but the Vikings iced it with a four-yard run by Allen Rice with 6:47 left in the game.

Hipple completed 22 of 37 passes for 205 yards for Detroit.

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