Bailey Zappe, defense come up big as Patriots blank Lions

Oct 9, 2022; Foxborough, Massachusetts, USA; New England Patriots linebacker Matthew Judon (9) strip sacks Detroit Lions quarterback Jared Goff (16) during the first half at Gillette Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brian Fluharty-USA TODAY Sports
Credit: Brian Fluharty-USA TODAY Sports

Bailey Zappe threw a touchdown in his first career NFL start and Kyle Dugger returned a fumble for a touchdown as the New England Patriots cruised to a 29-0 win over the Detroit Lions on Sunday in Foxborough, Mass.

Zappe completed 17 of 21 passes for 188 yards and also threw an interception as New England (2-3) snapped a two-game losing streak. He connected with Jakobi Meyers for a 24-yard TD at the end of the third quarter to officially put the game out of reach.

Meyers finished with seven catches for 111 yards, while Rhamondre Stevenson rushed for a career-high 161 yards on 25 carries.

Nick Folk added five field goals.

The Lions (1-4) mustered 312 yards of total offense. Jared Goff finished with 229 yards and one interception on 19-for-35 passing, and Jamaal Williams carried the ball 15 times for 56 yards. Josh Reynolds hauled in six catches for 92 yards.

In a last-chance effort to score, Detroit drove down to the Patriots’ 18 with 3:10 left to play. Goff threw two incompletions and turned the ball over on downs, though, to come up empty once again.

The Lions tried to move the chains six times on fourth down, but were never able to convert.

One of those fourth-down situations came with just under four minutes left in the first half when Detroit elected to go for a fourth-and-9 at the New England 32.

Matthew Judon sacked Goff, Goff fumbled and Dugger scooped up the loose ball and scurried 59 yards to the end zone for a 13-0 lead.

Folk made a 44-yard field goal as time expired in the first half to send the Patriots into the break up 16-0.

New England jumped out a 6-0 lead thanks to a pair of Folk field goals. He kicked a 37-yarder to cap the Patriots’ first drive of the game, and after Jack Jones intercepted Goff, Folk made good on 32-yard attempt to open the second quarter.

Lions cornerback Saivion Smith was taken off the field by ambulance early in the first quarter after sustaining a neck injury.

–Field Level Media

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