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Falcons, Vick Enjoy a Break

November 25, 2005|From the Associated Press

DETROIT — The Atlanta Falcons dominated the Detroit Lions so thoroughly, Michael Vick was able to kick back and relax.

Vick threw two touchdown passes to Alge Crumpler, and Warrick Dunn ran for 116 yards to lead Atlanta to a 27-7 victory over Detroit on Thursday.

"It's always nice when you get an opportunity in the fourth quarter to sit down, enjoy the moment and the victory," Vick said.

While he was resting and Detroit fans were leaving, Falcon Coach Jim Mora was probably the only one nervous about replacing his exciting quarterback with Matt Schaub early in the fourth quarter.

"When you've lost two in a row, it's hard to feel you've got one in the bag," Mora said. "Until the very end, I was on pins and needles not having Mike in there."

Atlanta (7-4) took advantage of playing the lowly Lions (4-7), closing the gap behind NFC South co-leaders Carolina and Tampa Bay to half a game after losing two in a row at home.

The Falcons improved to 4-1 away from home.

The only positive for Detroit was this: The result of its annual Thanksgiving game wasn't as bad as last year, when Indianapolis beat the Lions, 41-9.

Like last season's matchup, however, the visitors were ahead by so much in the fourth quarter that they rested their star quarterback.

"It was ugly and it was embarrassing," said Joey Harrington, one of three quarterbacks Detroit used.

Vick completed 12 of 22 passes for 146 yards with two touchdowns and an interception. Crumpler tied career highs with seven receptions and two touchdowns, and had 104 yards receiving.

The Lions had such a rough day they went through three quarterbacks. Harrington started and completed six of 13 passes for 61 yards with an interception. Jeff Garcia entered late in the first half and completed 14 of 24 passes for 154 yards with a touchdown and an interception. Rookie Dan Orlovsky, who got a chance to play late, was five for 11 for 43 yards and, fittingly, fumbled with 15 seconds left just outside Atlanta's end zone.

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