What it means for the Cowboys: Dominated offensively and defensively, the Cowboys had no business being in the game but lost it in a way only they can, giving up a touchdown with 12 seconds left to play on a Matthew Stafford leap after blowing two 10-point leads in the fourth quarter.
The Lions scored 24 points in the fourth quarter, and the defense was unable to find an answer for Calvin Johnson, who had 329 yards receiving, which were 125 more yards than the Cowboys had as a team.
With the loss, the Cowboys dropped to 4-4 and are foreshadowing a third straight 8-8 record.
The only thing that could save them is the NFC East division title, because the Cowboys would lose a wild-card tiebreaker with the Lions if it gets that far.
Stock watch: Cowboys defense, falling -- Johnson proved just how otherworldly he is with 14 catches for 329 yards, and he did it with Brandon Carr following him all over the field. Carr had success against Demaryius Thomas, Pierre Garcon and DeSean Jackson. He had none with Johnson. The Lions finished with 623 yards on offense, negating the four turnovers the Cowboys forced.
Three touchdowns, but: Tony Romo completed at least 69.4 percent of his passes in each of the first five games, but he has been off-target of late.
He did, however, throw a touchdown pass in his 21st straight game with a 5-yarder to Bryant in the second quarter, then hit on consecutive passes to Terrance Williams (60 yards) and Bryant (50 yards) in the fourth quarter for scores.
What’s next: The Cowboys return to AT&T Stadium next week to face the Minnesota Vikings. It is their only home game in a six-week span with road games against the New Orleans Saints (Nov. 10) and the New York Giants (Nov. 24) sandwiching their Nov. 17 bye week.