MINNEAPOLIS — Minnesota quarterback Wade Wilson, having thrown three interceptions in the first half, and wide receiver Anthony Carter, who had two of those passes bounce off his hands, both redeemed themselves in the third quarter Sunday.
Wilson, starting in place of the injured Tommy Kramer, came back to throw three second-half touchdown passes, including a 73-yard play to Carter, to lead the Vikings past the Detroit Lions, 34-19.
"Starting out with three interceptions isn't the best for your confidence," Wilson said. "But the defense gave us a chance to come back and win. Offensively, I knew we could get things going. I wasn't worried about A.C. (Carter). He's a quality receiver."
Carter couldn't explain how the passes got away from him.
"It's something that's going to happen in a game," he said. "But it happened to me and that's something that doesn't usually happen.
"I just dropped them, and Wade got two interceptions real quick. It was my fault."
The miscues helped Detroit build a 16-3 lead in the second quarter. But Wilson threw touchdown passes of 2 yards to running back D.J. Dozier in the second quarter and 73 yards to Carter and 24 yards to Leo Lewis in the third, when the Vikings scored 21 points. Dozier, a rookie, also rushed for a touchdown in the third-quarter outburst.
Dozier finished with 57 yards rushing.
Wilson completed 12 of 22 passes for 240 yards, and Detroit quarterback Chuck Long connected on 24 of 38 for 189 yards and 1 touchdown. He threw 2 interceptions.
The Lions' first interception, by free safety James Griffin, led to a 27-yard field goal by Eddie Murray. The other two interceptions were by cornerback Duane Galloway, setting up a 24-yard field goal and a 5-yard scoring pass from Long to Pete Mandley.
Murray kicked four field goals.
Detroit Coach Darryl Rogers gave the Vikings credit for the comeback.
He said that the Lions played well in the first half "but . . . were unable to sustain it for the full game."
"I thought they played very well in the second half," Rogers said. "They did the things they had to do to win the game. The pass to Anthony Carter was a big play. That turned it around. We ran a blitz, and he got behind the defense."