Doug Williams threw four touchdown passes -- two in the fourth period to break open a close game -- as the Tampa Bay Buccaneers rallied to beat the Detroit Lions, 28-10, today.
The Bucs (3-2) trailed, 10-0, in the second quarter and led only 14-10 in the fourth. But Detroit turnovers enabled the Bucs (3-2) to retain a share of the NFC Central lead with Minnesota. Detroit (2-3) had been tied for the lead, too.
The Lions had four passes intercepted and lost two of their four fumbles. Safety Cedric Brown of Tampa had two interceptions and each time Williams quickly capitalized. On the play following the first interception, Williams threw a 17-yard scoring pass to wide receiver Kevin House. Two plays after the second interception, Williams threw a six-yard touchdown pass to tight end Jim Obradovich.
Defensive end Bill Kollar recovered Eric Hipple's fumble on the 50 in the fourth period and, three plays later, Williams threw a 37-yard touchdown pass to fullback James Wilder. Kollar also recovered a fumble by Billy Sims and forced another fumble by Jeff Komlo.
In the second quarter, Williams passed to House for a 13-yard touchdown.
Williams completed 13 of 29 passes for 168 yards. He threw one interception.
The Buc defense, playing without injured star Lee Roy Selmon, had a field day. Linebacker Cecil Johnson, who had intercepted Komlo in the third quarter, killed Detroit's final threat by intercepting Hipple in the Tampa end zone with 7:53 left and returned to the Buc 34. Moreover, the Bucs held Sims to 75 yards on 24 carries.
The Lions scored on their first possession when Ed Murray kicked a 50-yard field goal. With 6:33 left in the first quarter, Komlo passed five yards to wide receiver Fred Scott for a 10-0 lead.
Komlo and Hipple played quarterback for Detroit because Gary Danielson is injured.
Komlo completed 14 of 25 passes for 153 yards. Hipple was four of 15 for 102. The Lions moved well early, but Williams, depite bad moments, made the big play when he had to.