NEWARK, N.J. -- After a month of dormancy, the Detroit Red Wings' offense awakened Friday night in a major way.

Frans Nielsen scored twice and Mike Green found the back of the net in overtime to give the Red Wings a 5-4 victory against the New Jersey Devils in a back-and-forth contest at Prudential Center.

The Red Wings hadn't scored more than three goals since they scored four against the Carolina Hurricanes on Oct. 25, which resulted in their offensive sinking to 2th in the league. They needed every last goal to beat the Devils after losing starting goaltender Jimmy Howard to a lower-body injury midway through the first period.

The Devils held leads of 1-0 and 3-2 and forced overtime when center Adam Henrique tied the game at 4 with 5:11 remaining in the third period. But the Red Wings would not be denied, as center Frans Nielsen capped a three-point night by putting the puck on a tee for Green to bang home in overtime.

"We played one of our better games this year," said Nielsen, who scored two goals in a span of 3:18 in the first period to pull the Red Wings ahead 2-1. "We were getting pucks and to the net. I think it showed we can be a tough team to play against when do that and simplify a little bit."

Before winning two straight, the Red Wings (10-10-1) had lost five straight in regulation and nine of 11 overall. That 4-2 victory against the Hurricanes a month ago is Detroit's last regulation victory but the Red Wings are hoping these consecutive wins can jump-start them as they return home to face the Montreal Canadiens on Saturday night.

"It's great," said right winger Anthony Mantha, who scored 43 seconds into the third period to give the Red Wings a 4-3 edge. "We need to keep scoring goals. We need to be good defensively, give less, for sure. We handled four goals tonight but it's not every night we can do the same thing."

The Devils (10-7-3) looked to be in control, holding a 3-2 lead in the final minute of the second period on goals by defenseman John Moore and left wingers Michael Cammalleri and Pavel Zacha. But a defensive breakdown led to right winger Gustav Nyquist hitting center Dylan Larkin off the rush for Larkin's goal with 1.2 seconds remaining in the period that sent the game to the third period tied at 3.

Devils coach John Hynes elected to challenge the goal, but video reviewed showed Nyquist remained onside before setting up Larkin's goal.

"It's understanding time and score, understanding certain situations in the game," Hynes said. "That's one where you have a lead, things are going OK, you want to get out of the period and then we have a situation where a defenseman holds the line to keep a puck in, our forward is in position and he makes the wrong decision. It's an odd-man rush and you see what happens after that."

"We'll take the point and hope to be better tomorrow for sure."

Not long before Larkin's goal, left winger Justin Abdelkader prevented a goal with goaltender Petr Mrazek out of position after making a save. Abdelader dropped to his knees to deny Cammalleri's attempt that otherwise would have put the Devils ahead 4-2.

"That was a big save by him," said Mrazek, who stopped 13 of 16 shots after Howard made two saves on three shots before departing.

With Howard expected to miss time, this is a chance for Mrazek to reclaim the starting job. He had taken a backseat to Howard this month and although he wasn't impressive against the Devils, he should get the lion's share of the starts until Howard is healthy.

"It's tough to lose him," Nielsen said of Howard. "Hopefully it's not too bad. We've still got Petr there and we've got a lot of confidence in him. I'm sure he's going to step up."

NOTES: Red Wings G Jimmy Howard, who opened the season in the back-up role, made his eighth start in nine games. Coach Jeff Blashill said he expects Howard to miss at least a week. ... The Red Wings scratched LW Drew Miller, D Alexey Marchenko and D Xavier Oullet. ... Devils LW Taylor Hall skated on his own Friday morning. He underwent surgery Nov. 16 was expected to miss 3-4 weeks, although coach John Hynes said that Hall is ahead of schedule. "He's incredibly fit and really takes care of himself and looks like he's on his way back in a good way."... The Devils scratched LW Reid Boucher and D Jon Merrill. ... The Devils (7-0-2) have yet to lose in regulation at home.