The hot start for the Falcons came a little later than it did the week prior, but against Detroit on Saturday, it eventually came. A stalled drive began the game for the Falcons but after a forced fumble by defensive tackle Corey Peters, the Matt Ryan-to-Roddy White connection began.
Ryan hit White for a 44-yard touchdown in the first quarter and then a 39-yard touchdown on the next possession in the second quarter. White entered the half with four catches for 106 yards.
White's hot start was mirrored by Ryan's. Ryan began the game connecting on his first 15 passes. His first incompletion came just before the two-minute mark before the half. The QB hit six different receivers in the first half. While the Lions managed one sack, the impressive pass protection the Falcons offensive line showed last week against the Giants continued as Ryan had plenty of time to make deep throws, like the first TD pass to White that came on third-and-1.
After his first incompletion, Ryan found Julio Jones for a 16-yard touchdown pass that was as impressive as any from Jones' career. Ryan hit Jones in stride in the back corner of the end zone giving Jones the split second he needed to catch the ball and ensure both feet were down.
Ryan's completion streak, dating back to last week, reached 22 straight after his hot start against Detroit. That inched up on an NFL record of 24 straight set by Donovan McNabb. Ryan's 22 straight stands tied for third in NFL history for consecutive completions. Ryan ended the first half with 15-of-16 completions for 184 yards along with the three TD passes.
In addition to the Peters forced fumble, the Falcons defense got another forced fumble from John Abraham late in the second quarter. Like the first turnover, the second resulted in a touchdown from the Falcons offense. Atlanta's defense kept the Lions out of the end zone, allowing only two field goals to help the Falcons jump out to a 21-6 first-half lead.