The winning streak has come to an end. After finishing 2010 with four straight wins and opening 2011 with five straight wins, the Detroit Lions have suffered their first defeat since Dec. 5, 2010. The loss came at the hands of the San Francisco 49ers, which improved to 5-1 with their 25-19 win over the Lions on Sunday.
Early on, this game looked like it could be a comfortable win for the Lions. Thanks to a 25-yard field goal by Jason Hanson (set up by a ) and a fumble recovery16-yard touchdown catch by , the Lions led by a score of 10-0 after one quarter.
The second quarter was all 49ers, however. Frank Gore scored from a yard out on the first play, and later Matthew Stafford was sacked in the end zone for a safety. David Akers nailed a 55-yard field goal as the quarter came to an end to put the 49ers on top, 12-10. (A drive earlier, Hanson missed a 52-yard field goal attempt.)
The third quarter was rather uneventful with the two teams trading field goals. The fourth quarter, on the other hand, was quite eventful. Nate Burleson scored on a five-yard touchdown reception at the start of the quarter, but only after a challenge resulted in the original call of an incomplete pass being reversed. It looked like the "Calvin Johnson rule" was going to bite the Lions again because Burleson dropped the ball after taking three steps out of the end zone, but the referees came to their senses and reversed the call.
The Lions were on top by a score of 19-15 (they went for two and didn't get it), and they held the lead for the next 11 minutes. The 49ers finally were able to break through on offense for their second touchdown of the game with 1:51 to go. Delanie Walker caught a six-yard touchdown pass on fourth down to put the 49ers on top. After the Lions turned the ball over on downs, Akers added another field goal.
Despite having a minute to go, the Lions were unable to even make things interesting, as they ran out of time 69 yards away from the end zone. They did try to lateral their way to a miracle last play, but the ball was fumbled and Titus Young just fell on it. Time ran out on the Lions and their unbeaten record.