NFL: Detroit Lions beat Atlanta Falcons 22-21 at Wembley

Detroit Lions
The Lions have won six of their eight games this season

Detroit Lions completed a remarkable second-half comeback to beat the Atlanta Falcons 22-21 in their NFL regular season match at Wembley.

Atlanta scored three touchdowns in the first half to lead 21-0 while Detroit had a 102-yard interception return chalked off for a foul.

Quarterback Matt Stafford threw two touchdown passes and Matt Prater kicked two field goals to give Detroit hope.

Prater then kicked a 48-yard field goal in the final seconds to win the match.

It was Prater's second attempt after his first effort from 43 yards drifted wide but he was given a reprieve when the Lions were given a five-yard penalty for delaying the game.

The 13:30 GMT kick-off in front of a sell-out crowd meant it was the earliest start for American viewers in NFL history.

It was the second NFL match at Wembley this season with a third match, between Jacksonville Jaguars and Dallas Cowboys, to come on 9 November.

NFL at Wembley
2007: New York Giants 13-10 Miami Dolphins2013: Pittsburgh Steelers 27-34 Minnesota Vikings
2008: San Diego Chargers 32-37 New Orleans Saints2013: San Francisco 49ers 42-10 Jacksonville Jaguars
2009: New England Patriots 35-7 Tampa Bay Buccaneers2014: Miami Dolphins 38-14 Oakland Raiders
2010: Denver Broncos 16-24 San Francisco 49ers2014: Atlanta Falcons 21-22 Detroit Lions
2011: Chicago Bears 24-18 Tampa Bay Buccaneers2014: 9 November - Jacksonville Jaguars v Dallas Cowboys
2012: New England Patriots 45-7 St Louis Rams

Atlanta went into the game on the back of a four-match losing streak but dominated the first-half with quarterback Matt Ryan throwing two touchdown passes to Devonta Freeman and Bear Pascoe while Steven Jackson ran in from one yard.

Detroit thought they had replied when Rashean Mathis intercepted Ryan's pass in his own end zone and ran it 102 yards for the touchdown only for officials to rule it out for a foul.

The momentum began to change after the break though as the Lions' scored a third-quarter field goal to get on the scoreboard.

Good morning America
Normally NFL matches played in London kick-off at 6pm but Sunday's 1.30pm GMT start meant it was the earliest ever start for a game in NFL history
Fans on American's east coast saw the start at 9.30am and it was even earlier at 6.30am for Pacific coast viewers
The early start meant the match clashed with church services
Reverend Bill Britt from the Peachtree Road United Methodist Church, Atlanta, Georgia organised to show the match in the church hall between services

Stafford then threw a stunning 59-yard touchdown to Golden Tate and picked out Theo Riddick for another six-point score, after a second Prater field goal, to trail 22-20.

The Lions missed a two-point conversion attempt to level the match but Stafford moved his team up the pitch in the final 90 seconds to give Prater his match-winning shot.

Meanwhile, Alistair Kirkwood NFL UK managing director confirmed there would be another three matches at Wembley next year.

Speaking to the BBC World Service he said: "We are going to do three games next year.

"There are some logistic reasons around the Rugby World Cup that means we won't be going to four or five.

"The twist is we are looking at staging two games back to back in successive weeks to test this support base."

Detroit Lions Golden Tate
Detroit Lions' receiver Golden Tate scored a 59-yard touchdown
NFL cheerleaders
NFL Cheerleaders performed for the Wembley crowd
Little Mix
British girl band Little Mix were part of the pre-show entertainment
NFL Wembey
The match was played in front of a sell-out crowd in London
Atlanta Falcons
Defeat sees the Falcons slip to a sixth defeat in eight games at the halfway stage of the season

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