Orlovsky helps Lions down Bills

ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. -- Turned out the Detroit Lions' second- and third-stringers were better than the Buffalo Bills, winning 14-6 on Thursday in a game in which both teams were only interested in resting their starters for the regular season.

The Bills (2-2) played one starter, safety Ko Simpson, and the Lions seven, including Jerome Felton, the starting fullback, who scored on a 9-yard reception from Dan Orlovsky, the backup quarterback, in what proved to be a glorified scrimmage even by preseason standards.

The Lions closed the preseason with an NFL-best 4-0 record, the first time they've gone unbeaten since going 4-0-1 in 1993.

Otherwise, it was a sloppy game that featured numerous dropped passes, several illegal formation penalties and even two safeties. Detroit's Shaun Cody tackled running back Dwayne Wright in the end zone late in the first quarter, and Langston Moore sacked Gibran Hamdan late in the second.

As far as position battles went, Wright had a terrible game. Besides the safety, the Bills' 2007 fourth-round pick fumbled for the second time this preseason, another setback in his attempt to beat rookie Xavier Omon for the third-string job.

For the Lions, strong safety Daniel Bullocks had five tackles, including a touchdown-saving takedown when Hamdan, the Bills' third-string quarterback, scrambled up the middle. Bullocks started and played his first game since last August, when he tore a ligament in his right knee during a preseason game.

Orlovsky finished 12-for-21 for 114 yards and a touchdown, while recently signed Drew Henson played the Lions' final series, completing the one pass he attempted for 11 yards.

Hamdan finished 18-for-26 for 158 yards, but left the game early in the fourth quarter, when he was shaken up after being sacked by Cliff Avril. Backup J.P. Losman took over on the Bills' final drive, earning the biggest cheer from the few fans that remained. Buffalo, though, ran out the clock with rushing plays.

The Bills, who opened with an offense that had 17 years of combined NFL experience, had reason to be cautious after starting tackle Langston Walker bruised his left forearm and Losman jammed the thumb on his throwing hand in last weekend's 20-7 win at Indianapolis.

Starting quarterback Trent Edwards, meanwhile, has been out since bruising his right thigh in practice on Aug. 19.

The Lions also sat their share of starters, including receivers Roy Williams and Calvin Johnson, quarterback Jon Kitna and even rookie running back Kevin Smith.

The Lions didn't leave injury-free. Fourth-string running back Brian Calhoun -- a starter on Thursday - did not return after sustaining a quadriceps injury in the first half. Rookie second-round pick, linebacker Jordon Dizon, was also hurt late in the third quarter, when he came up limping after attempting to tackle Scott Mayle on a punt return.

Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press

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