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Lions Catch Break on Ruling

December 27, 2004|From Associated Press

DETROIT — The Detroit Lions walked off the field stunned for a second straight week.

This time, they were surprised they won.

Chad Hutchinson appeared to throw a 43-yard, game-tying touchdown pass to Bernard Berrian with 1 minute 26 seconds left. But an incomplete ruling on the field stood after a review despite replays that appeared to show that it should have been overturned, giving Detroit a 19-13 victory over the Chicago Bears on Sunday.

"I was shocked," said Detroit's Jason Hanson, who kicked four field goals. "I thought for sure they were going to call it a touchdown, but I'm not going to complain."

Referee Terry McAulay announced on the field that the ball was moving when Berrian hit the ground.

The Bears were flabbergasted. "I caught the ball, got two feet in, hit the ground and that was it," Berrian said. "It was a touchdown. There's no doubt about it."

Last week, a botched extra-point kick with eight seconds left allowed Minnesota to beat Detroit, 28-27. The Lions (6-9) had lost seven of eight, but were subdued after nearly blowing a 16-0 lead in the second half.

"We're disappointed in our second-half performance," Detroit Coach Steve Mariucci said. "We had a chance to put the game away and we didn't do it."

The Bears (5-10) have dropped five of six.

Kevin Jones went over the 1,000-yard mark, something only Barry Sanders and Billy Sims had done as Detroit rookies, with 123 yards rushing on 25 carries.

Jones, with 1,061 yards, scored on a one-yard run and went over the 100-yard mark for the fourth time.

Linebacker Lance Briggs pulled the Bears to 16-6 late in the third quarter with an interception and 38-yard return.

Detroit's Joey Harrington was 15 for 30 for 166 yards with an interception. Hutchinson was 20 for 35 for 114 yards with a touchdown and Thomas Jones ran for 109 yards for the Bears.

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