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Lions to look to end drought against Vikings

Oct 3, 2006 - 11:15 PM Detroit (0-4) at Minnesota (2-2) Sunday 1:00 pm EDT

MINNEAPOLIS (Ticker) - Rod Marinelli still is looking for his first win as coach of the Detroit Lions. He may have a tough time getting it against the NFC North rival Minnesota Vikings.

The Lions have lost their last eight visits to the Metrodome heading into Sunday's matchup against the Vikings.

Detroit has not won here since a 14-13 victory in 1997. The Lions also have lost eight in a row and 12 of the last 13 meetings between the teams.

Brad Johnson helped the Vikings sweep the series from the Lions for the fourth straight year last season. The 15-year veteran completed 32-of-45 passes for 392 yards and four touchdowns without a turnover.

Johnson went 15-of-22 for 136 yards and two scores in a 27-14 victory here on November 6.

Marinelli, a former defensive line coach who knows Johnson from their days in Tampa Bay, will be hoping his unit shows some improvement.

After limiting NFC champion Seattle to nine points in the opener, the Lions have allowed 34, 31 and 41 points in their last three contests. Detroit surrendered 427 total yards in last Sunday's 41-34 loss at St. Louis.

While the Lions' defense is struggling, the offense is showing signs of life under new coordinator Mike Martz. Detroit has erupted for 58 points the last two games after managing just 13 in its first two contests.

Jon Kitna threw for two touchdowns and Kevin Jones ran for a pair of scores in last week's loss to the Rams.

Also featuring a first-year coach in Brad Childress, the Vikings got off to a 2-0 start but have dropped their last two contests.

Johnson threw two interceptions and Chester Taylor managed just 23 yards rushing on 10 attempts as Minnesota dropped a 17-12 decision at Buffalo last Sunday.