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Fan fiction: Lions cap off unbelievable comeback with an 85-yard Hail Mary

The Lions lost again. So we’re going to pretend they won again, and you can’t stop us.

NFL: Detroit Lions at Green Bay Packers Benny Sieu-USA TODAY Sports

Note: After every Detroit Lions loss, we’re going to write a fictionalized version of what we wished would have happened. This is a way for us all to let go of the anger and release our frustrations in a positive way.

The Lions looked hopeless after heading to the locker room down 31-10. The defense was single-handedly resurrecting Aaron Rodgers career, who admitted after the game that he was one quarter away from retiring from football after the Packers’ slow start. The offense was able to move the ball, but incapable of finishing drives. As the Lions came out of the tunnel in the second half, no one really seemed to notice.

But then, just before kickoff, we saw Matthew Stafford on the sidelines. FOX audio accidentally caught the first few seconds of his tirade on the bench, and was subsequently fined $2 million by the FCC for airing such language. Stafford paced up and down the sideline, showering every single Lions players’ face with spit as he lectured each individual. At the end of the line was Andre Roberts. By the time Stafford got to him, Roberts—drenched in fear sweat—bowed before his quarterback, taking a knee for the first time in his life. Stafford calmly place a hand on his shoulder... then promptly bit off his head.

The speech worked, as Dwayne Washington took the opening kickoff in the second half for a touchdown. Then Stafford threw a record 8 touchdowns to Marvin Jones, who was immediately placed in the Hall of Fame after the game.

Unfortunately for Stafford, the speech seemed to have no effect on the Lions defense. Aaron Rodgers had thrown 10 touchdown passes of his own. To be fair, though, nine of those were aided by 70+ yard pass interference penalties. Some of those calls were questionable, too. By the end of the third quarter, Lions defensive backs had purposely tied their own hands behind their back just to prove they weren’t interfering with Packers receivers. The tactic didn’t work, though, because in the fourth quarter alone, they were flagged for six more interference calls. Meanwhile, the refs had to stop play several times in the final stanza to physically pry the hands of Packers offensive linemen from the jerseys of the Lions defenders. The Packers led 87-81 with just 20 seconds to play.

Zombie Andre Roberts took the ensuing kickoff from nine-yards deep in the end zone and managed to get it all the way to the Lions’ 5-yard line before tripping over his own, semi-digested head.

Stafford had just 10 seconds to go 95 yards for the game-winning score. On the very first play, Stafford dropped back to pass and was sacked in the end zone for a safety. Laken Tomlinson saw a butterfly on the play and chased it 20-yards downfield, leaving Nick Perry completely unblocked. The game was over.

Over, until a flag game raining down a few seconds after the play had ended. Once-maligned referee Carl Cheffers announced to the crowd that No. 92 had committed a face mask penalty. The Packers had no such player with that number. As Cheffers finished his last words, he ripped open his striped uniform to reveal a shirt with the words #ONEPRIDE embroidered in Honolulu Blue. He gave the double birds to Roger Goodell, who was too busy completing a cash transaction with Packers president Mark Murphy to notice, and flew out of the stadium, giving Matthew Stafford a wink as he soared through the air.

The Packers, completely not expecting a Hail Mary from the Lions’ own 15-yard line, were only prepared with two defensive backs on the play. But Stafford’s arm easily made it the entire distance of the football field, and it was none other than Zombie Andre Roberts who was on the other end to make the catch. As ZAR got up to celebrate the play, Calvin Johnson joined him in the end zone. Over the next seven minutes, they both did the “Thriller” dance to perfection. The Lions are 3-0 and Johnson announced he is going on tour with Beyoncé.

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After winning their first NFC North title in 30 years, the Lions have unfinished business this offseason. Stay updated with Jeremy Reisman through Pride of Detroit Direct, our newsletter offering up exclusive analysis. Sign up with NFCNORTH30 to get 30% off after your free trial.