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2016 Detroit Lions POD Awards: Game of the Year

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What was the Detroit Lions’ Game of the Year in 2016?

Detroit Lions v Minnesota Vikings Photo by Adam Bettcher/Getty Images

Next up for the 2016 Detroit Lions POD Awards is the category for Detroit Lions Game of the Year.

Week 7: Lions 20, Washington 17

The Detroit Lions dominated most of this game, eventually building a 13-3 lead with just over 13 minutes remaining, but that’s when the game kicked into overdrive.

Washington would score touchdowns on their next two drives, the second coming with only 1:05 left in the game, and pulling Washington ahead 17-13. After Kirk Cousins scored on an improbable option play, it prompted blowhard Skip Bayless to congratulate Cousins on his game-winning drive.

Matthew Stafford soon showed Bayless what a real game-winning drive looked like, going 65 yards in just 49 seconds, and ending with an 18-yard strike to Anquan Boldin for the winning score.

Week 9: Lions 22, Vikings 16 (OT)

The Minnesota Vikings were 5-2 and undefeated in their comfy new stadium. The Detroit Lions were 4-4, having come off a deflating loss to the Texans. Detroit didn’t have much hope coming into the game, and they had even less hope when they gave up the go-ahead score with just 23 seconds left on the clock and no timeouts remaining.

But Stafford had more tricks up his sleeve and a 27-yard dart up the middle of the field was all the Matt Prater needed to boot a 58-yard field goal to send the game into overtime.

In the extra period, Stafford was nearly perfect and made sure the Vikings would not get a chance to have the ball. The game ended on what is sure to be the most memorable moment from the 2016 season:

Week 12: Lions 16, Vikings 13

A few weeks late the Lions hosted the Vikings for a Thanksgiving Day Classic that won’t soon be forgotten. The game went back-and-forth for all four quarters, with the Lions eventually tying the game up at 13 with 1:45 left on the clock.

Sam Bradford and the Vikings were hoping for vengeance in the form of their own game winning drive, and it appeared they were going to do it. The Vikings were already at the 40-yard line when an illegal formation penalty negated a third down conversion and set up a tough third-and-7. Enter: Darius Slay.

The Lions would just simply milk the clock from there and Prater was true from 40 yards to seal another comeback victory.

Week 13: Lions 28, Saints 13

In what would be the Lions’ only win of more than seven points, Detroit looked dominant in the Superdome. From start to finish, Matthew Stafford was on fire. And despite settling for field goals early in the game, the offense still managed 28 points and a whopping 422 yards of offense.

The defense was just as impressive against a Saints team that was just coming off of a 49-point performance against the Rams. The Lions forced Drew Brees into three interceptions and held the Pro Bowl quarterback without a home passing touchdown for the first time since 2009.

This game provided the apex of Lions optimism, as it was the first, and only, full performance from the team. After Week 13, the Lions defense didn’t tally another turnover and the Lions offense never scored more than 24 points again.