DETROIT — Matt Prater kicked a 40-yard field goal as time expired to give Detroit a 16-13 victory over Minnesota on Thursday.
The Lions took possession of the football at the Vikings 20-yard line after a 13-yard interception return by Darius Slay.
Cordarrelle Patterson tried to force a fumble, but officials ruled that Slay was down before the ball came out.
Slay stepped in front of a pass intended for Adam Thielen on third-and-7 three plays after Detroit tied the game on a 48-yard field goal by Prater with 1:45.
Detroit improved to 7-4 with its seventh fourth-quarter comeback of the season. Minnesota fell to 6-5 overall and now trails the Lions in the NFC North.
The comeback occurred just 18 days after the Lions defeated the Vikings in overtime in Minnesota.
Detroit converted six of the 14 third downs it faced, compared to two of 10 by Minnesota, a team that again suffered injuries on the offensive line, losing center Joe Berger and right tackle Jeremiah Sirles during the game.
The Lions opened with a 12-play, 75-yard drive that was capped with a 2-yard touchdown pass from Matthew Stafford to Anquan Boldin. Stafford was 6-of-6 for 46 yards during the drive and had a 6-yard scramble. Boldin had a pair of catches to convert third downs.
The Vikings answered with a 12-play, 75-yard touchdown drive of their own that was capped with a 5-yard run by Matt Asiata.
Bradford completed six of his first seven pass attempts for 51 yards, and the one incompletion benefitted the Vikings. Officials initially ruled the play a fumble, but after review, determined that his arm was going forward when the ball was knocked out by Ezekiel Ansah. The following play — an interception by Glover Quin — was negated by a pass interference penalty on Quin while covering Laquon Treadwell.
Detroit added a 29-yard field goal by Prater for a 10-7 lead with 6:45 left in the second quarter. The Lions gained 41 on a pass from Stafford to Golden Tate to start the drive but stalled in the red zone when Trae Waynes made a diving pass breakup to deny Marvin Jones, Jr.
Both teams went for it on fourth-and-short near midfield with less than four minutes left in the first half, and both teams were denied conversions.
Bradford's pass attempt to Thielen was batted down.
Brian Robison stuffed Eagan native Zach Zenner on fourth-and-1 at the Minnesota 49-yard line just before the two-minute warning. The Vikings, however, were unable to move the ball beyond midfield and punted with 1:06 left in the first half.
The Vikings tied the game at 10 with 7:03 left in the third quarter on a 30-yard field goal by Kai Forbath. Minnesota gained 41 yards on the opening play of the drive with a short pass from Bradford to Jerick McKinnon.
Minnesota took its first lead of the game, 13-10, on a 28-yard field goal by Forbath with 12:38 left in the game. Forbath's three-pointer capped a 13-play drive that lasted 7:36.
The Vikings gained momentum late in the third quarter with a 10-yard completion from Bradford to Patterson to convert third-and-7. After a 9-yard pass to Thielen, the Vikings called a reverse to Patterson via Thielen. Patterson zoomed 22 yards on the carry, and Asiata followed with a 15-yard run to end the period. Minnesota, however, was flagged for a chop block on the opening play of the fourth quarter.
The Vikings were only able to gain back the 15 yards lost on the penalty and settled for the field goal.
The Lions tied the game at 13 with 1:45 remaining on a 48-yard field goal by Prater to finish a drive that began at the Detroit 1. Eric Kendricks tackled Theo Riddick for a loss of 1 on third-and-1 to force the field goal.
View game action images as the Vikings take on the Detroit Lions at Ford Field on Thanksgiving Day.