• My Scores
  • NFL
  • MLB
  • Golf
  • NHL

Indianapolis at Detroit

Culpepper, Stafford battle to draw as Lions rally past Colts

CBSSports.com wire reports

DETROIT -- Daunte Culpepper and Matthew Stafford seemed to do enough Saturday to keep the Detroit Lions' quarterback competition wide open. Heck, even Peyton Manning thought they did well.

Culpepper threw for a touchdown and Stafford passed for 160 yards to help Detroit beat the Indianapolis Colts 18-17 in an exhibition game.

Three-time MVP Manning has said Stafford -- the No. 1 pick in the NFL Draft -- would be best served to play right away as he did, but left Ford Field impressed with Detroit's top two QBs.

"I thought both of them looked good," Manning said. "It seems like the race is going to go down to the wire."

Lions coach Jim Schwartz chose to begin the first and third preseason games with Culpepper under center, but wouldn't discuss plans for the exhibition finale Thursday night at Buffalo.

Schwartz did say, though, he is planning to use his top players more than most coaches do in the fourth exhibition.

"We're still in evaluation mode," Schwartz said. "We're going to approach it the same way we did these other three games."

Culpepper completed seven of 12 passes for 67 yards, deftly avoiding the rush to make some throws and showing enough poise to connect with his third option on the TD -- Bryant Johnson for a 3-yard score.

"I feel great," said Culpepper, who was a Pro Bowl-caliber QB in Minnesota before a knee injury in 2005. "I honestly feel like I did before I got hurt."

Stafford was 13 of 19 and threw an interception, which his coach blamed on Johnson for not being more aggressive.

The strong-armed QB made a 40-yard throw to fellow rookie Derrick Williams and a 37-yarder to Calvin Johnson, showing why Detroit drafted the former Georgia star.

"I feel like I've played well," Stafford said. "I don't know what they're going to do. It's not up to me."

Drew Stanton followed Culpepper and Stafford, and led Detroit (2-1) to the winning points with 4:13 left. He threw a 21-yard pass to rookie Dan Gronkowski and a 2-point conversion to John Standeford.

While Detroit's QB situation is murky, Manning is still in charge for the Colts, just as he has been since they drafted him first overall in 1998.

The reigning MVP was 12 of 15 for 123 yards, including a 6-yard TD to Dallas Clark, who had six receptions for 63 yards.

"Both drives at the beginning of both halves were quality," Manning said. "On the two drives where we did not get points it was more us than them. It was us self-destructing."

Colts rookie Curtis Painter, playing in place of sore backup Jim Sorgi, completed nine of 14 passes for 145 yards and an interception that should've been caught by receiver John Matthews.

Indianapolis (1-2) put several banged-up players on the inactive list, but coach Jim Caldwell wasn't in the mood to make excuses for the Lions' 412 yards of offense.

"Regardless of who goes in there and plays for us, we expect them to play as well as anyone else, whether he's a starter or not," Caldwell said. "For the most part, we just didn't get it done."

Caldwell was encouraged cornerback Marlin Jackson and safety Antoine Bethea were healthy enough to play.

"In both cases the guys haven't had an opportunity to play much at all this preseason," Caldwell said. "So, to get them out there was very important."


  • Colts DE Rudolph Hardie (knee), TE Tom Santi (ankle) and Lions DE Jason Hunter (ribs) were injured during the game.
  • Detroit's Kevin Smith had 50 yards on eight carries, including a 24-yard run.
  • Joseph Addai ran for 22 yards on seven carries for the Colts.
  • Calvin Johnson, who missed the first two preseason games with a sprained thumb, had four catches for 67 yards and Bryant Johnson played for the first time since getting in an accident with a golf cart.
Copyright 2016 by STATS LLC and The Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and The Associated Press is strictly prohibited.
CBSSports Facebook Google Plus
Conversation powered by Livefyre
Daunte Culpepper connects seven of 12 passes, including a 4-yard touchdown to Bryant Johnson.  (AP)
Daunte Culpepper connects seven of 12 passes, including a 4-yard touchdown to Bryant Johnson. (AP)


Related Video

September 23, 2016
San Diego at Indianapolis (-2.5) (2:00)
September 21, 2016
Chargers at Colts Preview
September 21, 2016
Donte Moncrief out 4-6 weeks with a shoulder injury
September 21, 2016
Chargers @ Colts Picks
Sat. Aug. 29Final
Pass: C. Painter (9-14, 145) M. Stafford (13-19, 160)
Rush: J. Addai (7-22) K. Smith (8-50)
Rec: P. Garcon (2-82) C. Johnson (4-67)
Scoring Summary
TDDallas Clark, 6 Yd pass from Peyton Manning (Shane Andrus kick is good), 5:36. Drive: 6 plays, 80 yards in 2:48.
TDBryant Johnson, 3 Yd pass from Daunte Culpepper (Billy Cundiff kick is good), 14:55. Drive: 12 plays, 71 yards in 5:41.
FGBilly Cundiff 21 Yd, 3:21. Drive: 14 plays, 79 yards in 7:39.
TDDonald Brown, 2 Yd run (Shane Andrus kick is good), 9:32. Drive: 11 plays, 86 yards in 5:28.
FGShane Andrus 29 Yd, 7:31. Drive: 10 plays, 88 yards in 4:58.
TDDan Gronkowski, 21 Yd pass from Drew Stanton (Drew Stanton pass to John Standeford for 2 Pt. Conversion), 4:13. Drive: 3 plays, 43 yards in 1:18.
C. Painter9/1414501
P. Manning12/1512310
J. Addai722011
D. Brown51618
C. Simpson31209
L. Ball3101
P. Manning1-10-1
P. Garcon282063
D. Clark663123
T. Santi122022
J. Addai121021
A. Collie220011
A. Gonzalez217012
J. Tamme21207
J. Matthews111011
G. Robinson1909
J. Petrowski1404
R. Wayne1404
B. McDermott1303
M. Stafford13/1916001
D. Culpepper7/126710
D. Stanton4/65610
K. Smith85000
A. Brown737012
T. Davis422014
M. Morris71905
J. Felton71806
A. Cason2503
C. Johnson467037
D. Williams463040
K. Smith33300
B. Pettigrew224013
D. Gronkowski121121
J. Standeford221014
K. Colbert220013
A. Jennings111011
D. Looker111011
J. Felton110010
B. Johnson1313
C. Fitzsimmons1202
A. Brown1-30-3
Complete Player Stats
Other Games
MIN 17 Final
HOU 10
CHI 27 Final
DEN 17
NYJ 27 Final
NYG 25
SEA 14 Final
KC 10
SF 20 Final
DAL 13
BAL 17 Final
CAR 13
SD 24 Final
ATL 27
BUF 0 Final
PIT 17
TEN 17 Final
CLE 23
NO 45 Final
GB 44 Final
ARI 37
NE 27 Final
WAS 24
MIA 10 Final
TB 6
STL 24 Final
CIN 21
JAC 32 Final
PHI 33