Stafford leads Lions past Saints, 35-27

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NEW ORLEANS (AP) — Matthew Stafford passed for 254 yards and three touchdowns, and the Detroit Lions held off a late surge by New Orleans to defeat the Saints 35-27 on Monday night.

Detroit (5-9) raced to a 28-3 lead, but Drew Brees threw a pair of touchdown passes — one shortly after a Lions fumble — to help New Orleans (5-9) pull to 28-20 with about 10 minutes left.

Brees passed for 341 yards and three touchdowns, becoming only the fourth quarterback to surpass 60,000 yards in a career while also eclipsing the 4,000-yard mark for the 10th straight season.

But New Orleans’ loss guaranteed consecutive losing seasons for the first time since Sean Payton became coach in 2006.

Golden Tate caught two touchdown passes for Detroit. The Lions’ last-ranked running game accounted for 150 yards and two TDs against New Orleans’ last-ranked run defense.

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