Demarus Dye| BKD TV Insiders
Here is a recap of Week 5 of the 2018 NFL Season with a Tuesday Morning QB & thanks again to AP Sports/ Pro 32 for photos & articles.
Bye: Bears, Buccaneers
Colts 28, Patriots 34
FOXBOROUGH, Mass. (AP) — On a night when he reached 500 career touchdown passes, Tom Brady welcomed back a buddy with one of his three scoring tosses Thursday, then connected with a newcomer who could help him reach more milestones.
Brady also sneaked in for a rushing touchdown and the New England Patriots put together their second straight win after a mediocre start to the season, beating Indianapolis 38-24.
Brady’s 500th went to Josh Gordon, recently acquired from Cleveland, where he basically was unavailable through NFL suspensions for all but five games over the past three seasons. But, as he often does, Brady spread the wealth, hitting running back James White 10 times for 77 yards, and greeting the return of buddy Julian Edelman by completing seven for 57 yards to him.
“We wanted to get him the ball and he made some great plays,” Brady said about Edelman. “Just good to have him out there. We all want it to be perfect when we go out and it was great to have him out there … healthy and having fun.”
As for 500 TD passes, third on the career list behind Peyton Manning (539) and Brett Favre (508), Brady called it a collective mark.
“I think all these things like that, milestones, there are so many people that contribute, all the people that have really worked hard,” he said. “A quarterback doesn’t throw to himself.
“These are all great team awards, pretty cool.”
The five-time NFL champion also tied Colts kicker Adam Vinatieri, a former teammate, for most victories with 226. Brady finished 34 for 44 for 341 yards.
As everyone in Gillette Stadium except, apparently, the Colts knew, Brady started off with a pass to Edelman, who was wide open for 9 yards. That drew the first of many loud cheers for the 10th-year veteran receiver in his first game since the 2017 preseason, when he tore up a knee. Edelman was suspended for the first four games this year for violating the NFL’s policy on performance enhancers.
“During the rehab you are just sitting there and waiting to get back on the field,” Edelman said. “It felt great to be out there with the guys.”
That was the first of three receptions for 28 yards for Edelman on the opening 75-yard touchdown drive Brady capped with a 1-yard toss to Cordarrelle Patterson .
From there, even though the Colts (1-4) had a drive deep into New England (3-2) territory, usually reliable Adam Vinatieri missed a 38-yard field goal.
Nothing was going right for Indianapolis, particularly after Brady led a 72-yard march to his sneak from the 1. Then he took the Patriots 68 yards near the end of the half and hit workhorse White for a 6-yard score to lead 21-3.
Under pressure, Andrew Luck threw a poor pass that Patrick Chung intercepted at midfield, and Stephen Gostkowski made a 45-yard field goal for a 24-3 halftime lead.
Luck did extend his string of games with a touchdown pass by hitting Eric Ebron on a 14-yarder in the third quarter. Showing a strong arm all night — remember, Luck missed all of 2017 with shoulder issues — he has a TD throw in 28 successive games, tops of any current quarterback.
“We’re not going to win consistently until we learn how to get out of our own way,” Luck said. “That’s not taking anything away from New England. They were the better team today. Anybody who watched it or played in it knows it. It was self-evident.
“But we’re going to have to learn how not to lose if we want to give ourselves a chance to win.”
After Matthias Farley’s interception of a pass bobbled by Chris Hogan, Indy could do nothing. Rookie Jordan Wilkins had the ball stripped from his hands by Devin McCourty four players later.
But a second pick of Brady that was not his fault — Rob Gronkowski had the ball stolen and Najee Goode wound up with it — helped the Colts get back into it for a short time.
Looking like vintage Luck, he brought his team 80 yards, including a pair of big third-down throws to Ebron, and Eric Swoope caught a 13-yard scoring pass to make it 24-17.
That’s when everyone saw vintage Brady as he hit the half-century mark for TD throws by connecting with newcomer Gordon for 34 yards, the 71st player to catch a touchdown pass from Brady, an NFL mark.
“A great play Josh made jumping over two defenders,” Brady said. “It tells you kind of the confidence I have in him in a short period of time. Obviously he has earned it.”
Vinatieri, whose leg helped New England win three Super Bowls, hit the left upright with his 673rd career field goal attempt, the second most in NFL history. He already holds the mark for most field goals made and is closing in on Hall of Famer Morten Andersen’s points record, but was victimized by a high snap on the first-quarter miss.
Showing his true skills, Vinatieri later nailed a 54-yarder with plenty to spare.
In addition to White’s receptions, rookie Sony Michel had 98 yards rushing on 18 carries, including the final New England score, a 34-yard burst down the sideline in the final period.
The Colts were severely depleted, missing five starters, including their best receiver. T.Y. Hilton was out with chest and hamstring injuries. Tight end Jack Doyle (hip), running back Marlon Mack (hamstring), tackle Denzelle Good (personal matter) and cornerback Kenny Moore II (concussion) also were sidelined. They lost five more players during the game.
Not much was made of the “Deflategate” saga, even though this was Indy’s first trip to Gillette Stadium since getting routed in the 2014 AFC title game. That loss led to an NFL investigation of alleged underinflated footballs, and eventually to a four-game suspension for Brady, which he sat out in 2016.
Colts: at New York Jets on Oct. 14.
Patriots: host Kansas City on Oct. 14.
Giants 31, Panthers 33
CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) — Maybe Panthers coach Ron Rivera should allow his special teams to run out of the tunnel more often for pre-game introductions.
Graham Gano connected on all four field goal attempts, including a career-long 63-yarder with 1 second remaining, and Carolina recovered a muffed punt in the end zone for a touchdown to beat the New York Giants 33-31 in a wild game Sunday.
“Piece of cake,” Rivera joked after Gano’s winning field goal, which tied for the second longest in NFL history.
Gano’s winning kick came after the Giants erased an 11-point fourth quarter deficit. Eli Manning hooked up with Saquon Barkley on a 15-yard touchdown pass down the right sideline — the rookie made a long dive into the end zone — to put the Giants in front 31-30 with 1:08 remaining.
Gano’s previous career long was 59 yards. He’s now made 35 in a row at home dating back to 2016.
He said running out of the smoky tunnel before the game for the first time in his career was “pretty special” and made him feel like Cam Newton. But the winning kick was even better.
After he converted the kick he said his main goal was seeking safety from the rest of his teammates running after him.
“I just tried to hit a good ball and the rest was craziness and madness,” Gano said. “I’m so excited for our guys.”
It’s the second year in a row the Giants (1-4) have been beaten by a monster field goal at the end. In the third game last season, Jake Elliott of the Eagles kicked a 61-yarder for a 27-24 win.
Newton threw for 237 yards and had two touchdowns and two interceptions and helped get the Panthers (3-1) into field goal range with a 20-yard completion to D.J. Moore and a 9-yarder to Christian McCaffrey on the final drive.
Newton called it a “subpar” game on his part, but was thrilled Gano helped bail him out.
“A wise man told me once that a great quarterback is only as good as his kicker,” Newton said. “Graham put the whole team on his back today. … well, on his toe today.”
Manning finished 22 of 36 for 326 yards with two touchdowns and two interceptions, both by Panthers 37-year-old safety Mike Adams.
Odell Beckham Jr., had a big game as a receiver and passer. Beckham had eight catches for 131 yards and a touchdown and also threw a 57-yarder to Barkley for New York’s first touchdown.
“I’m proud of everything we showed today,” said Beckham. “We just came up short.”
Beckham had one big mistake in the first half that cost his team.
Instead of fielding Michael Palardy’s punt at his 5, Beckham went to block a Carolina player. The ball hit off his leg and two other Giants had a chance to recover the loose ball before eight-year veteran special teams player Colin Jones recovered in the end zone for his first career score and a 14-3 Carolina lead.
Beckham said he addressed his Giants teammates before the game about comments he made about Manning and the offense this past week. He said things had built up inside of him for several weeks and that his comments “came out the wrong way.”
The Panthers got another weapon back on the field and he made an immediate impact. Curtis Samuel, a second-round pick in 2017, turned a wide receiver screen into a 25-yard touchdown in the first quarter in his first game since undergoing a minor heart procedure. The speedster, 5-foot-11 and 195 pounds, showed some toughness by breaking three tackles to get into the end zone.
Panthers safety Eric Reid knelt during the national anthem in protest of racial and social injustice. None of Reid’s new Carolina teammates joined him or stood near him at midfield. He is the first Panthers player ever to kneel during the national anthem.
Giants: Right tackle Chad Wheeler left in the fourth quarter with a hand injury and did not return.
Panthers: Wide receiver Devin Funchess was evaluated for a concussion in the fourth quarter following a helmet-to-helmet hit by Giants defensive back Michael Thomas, but returned to the game. … Center Ryan Kalil was shaken up late in the fourth quarter and did not return as Tyler Larsen finished the game.
Giants: Host Eagles on Thursday night.
Panthers: Visit Redskins next Sunday.
Falcons 17, Steelers 41
PITTSBURGH (AP) — Ben Roethlisberger let the ball go before Antonio Brown broke out of his route and turned toward the pylon. It was throw that required anticipation and trust, the kind the Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback and All-Pro wide receiver have connected on countless times during their near-decade together.
But not all years, or throws, are created equal.
Following a turbulent opening month in which the two stars struggled to develop anything resembling their usual rhythm, Roethlisberger’s perfectly timed 9-yard touchdown flip to Brown early in the second half of Sunday’s 41-17 romp over reeling Atlanta felt cathartic.
Brown dropped to his knees and raised his arms to the sky. Roethlisberger eschewed his usually understated celebration for an emphatic fist pump. When the two hooked up again early in the fourth quarter — a 47-yard strike down the left sideline that sealed Pittsburgh’s most complete performance of the season — all the frustration that appeared to be bubbling near the surface dissipated.
“We know we got to stay together regardless of what’s being said,” Brown said. “All of my catches, all of my touchdowns are from him, and that’s my guy. I live and die with him and the Wi-Fi was lit.”
No buffering. No squabbling. No temper tantrums. The Steelers (2-2-1) hope all of that is behind them after a week when Brown said his “Wi-Fi” connection with Roethlisberger was a bit shaky.
“Obviously, we got some things rolling,” Brown said after finishing with six receptions for 101 yards and the two touchdowns. “Everyone uplifted each other, believed in each other and the energy was great.”
And necessary. While head coach Mike Tomlin allowed that “it’s going to be quite some time before we get that September stench off of us,” his team responded with a dominant effort on both sides of the ball.
Roethlisberger finished with 250 yards passing and three touchdowns. James Conner ran for 110 yards and two scores and added 75 yards receiving. The defense sacked Atlanta’s Matt Ryan six times and held Falcons wide receiver Julio Jones without a catch until the fourth quarter.
“I don’t know if it was a ‘turnaround game,’ but it’s a game that we needed for sure because we know what we can do,” Steelers cornerback Joe Haden said. “We know how talented we are.”
Even if Pittsburgh didn’t exactly play like it over the opening four weeks, a stretch in which the club couldn’t seem to avoid distractions off the field — the continued absence of running back Le’Veon Bell and Brown’s social media missteps chief among them — or make enough plays on it.
A sense of normalcy returned against the Falcons (1-4). Conner, tasked with filling in for Bell while Bell waits … and waits … to sign his franchise tender, piled up 99 total yards in the first quarter alone. Conner soared for a 1-yard touchdown on Pittsburgh’s opening drive and raced in from 2 yards out in the third quarter as the Steelers turned a 13-10 halftime lead into a blowout.
“I was trying to set the tone early and we just had to start fast,” Conner said.
And finish even faster.
Pittsburgh had been shut out in the second half each of the last two weeks but scored four touchdowns in the final 23 minutes, the last coming when linebacker LJ Fort fell on a fumble by Ryan in the end zone with 3:35 to play.
“Hopefully this performance can catapult us in the right direction,” Fort said.
The expected shootout between two of the NFL’s best offenses — and worst defenses — never materialized. Atlanta trailed by 13 points by the end of the first quarter, scrambled to get back into it by halftime but never threatened after the break.
Ryan completed 26 of 38 passes for 285 yards and a touchdown but also spent a significant portion of the afternoon under duress and couldn’t get the ball to Jones when it mattered. Jones, who entered the game leading the NFL in yards receiving, caught five passes for a season-low 62 yards, all of them coming with the outcome basically decided.
“Obviously we want to get him involved,” Ryan said of Jones. “They made a pretty concerted effort to take him out and that created opportunities elsewhere.”
Mohamed Sanu caught four passes for 73 yards and a touchdown for Atlanta, but Devonta Freeman ran just eight times for 32 yards after missing three games because of injury. The Falcons managed 62 yards rushing and Pittsburgh teed off.
IT’S A … FOOTBALL
Pittsburgh second-year wide receiver JuJu Smith-Schuster added a new routine to his ever-expanding touchdown celebration repertoire: The ebullient 21-year-old feigned giving birth after hauling in an 18-yard score from Roethlisberger in the first half. Conner served as the obstetrician, handing the ball to Smith-Schuster, who rocked it to sleep.
The Steelers were called for a pair of unnecessary roughness penalties for hits on Ryan, one on linebacker Jon Bostic and the other on linebacker T.J. Watt, who tried but failed to pull his hands back in time when he went low on Ryan in the first half. While Tomlin stressed both calls were legitimate, he also expressed frustration in general.
“Some of the other stuff is a joke,” Tomlin said. “We’ve got to get better in (the NFL). These penalties are costing people games and jobs.”
Falcons: Welcome Tampa Bay to Atlanta next Sunday. The Falcons have won the last three meetings with the Buccaneers.
Steelers: Travel to AFC North rival Cincinnati next Sunday. Pittsburgh swept the season series from the Bengals last season.
Packers 23, Lions 31
DETROIT (AP) — The Detroit Lions have beaten Aaron Rodgers- and Tom Brady-led teams this season.
And yes, they still have a losing record.
Detroit has provided glimpses of its potential, beating the Green Bay Packers 31-23 on Sunday in their first home game since dominating the New England Patriots.
The Lions (2-3) have also shown they have plenty of weaknesses, which were on display in a 31-point loss to the New York Jets at home and during comeback attempts that fell short on the road against Dallas and San Francisco.
Matthew Stafford has had time to throw this season behind an improved offensive line and he has one of the NFL’s best trio of receivers: Kenny Golladay, Golden Tate and Marvin Jones. Rookie Kerryon Johnson and veteran LeGarrette Blount have giving the team a running game it hasn’t had in years. And, the Lions are also having some success on defense under first-year coach Matt Patricia, whose scheme gave Rodgers and Brady problems.
Just don’t ask Detroit’s coaches or players to explain how they can look so good in one game and not so good in another because they can’t explain it.
“This is the way you want to play the game, out in front and to not have to come back,” said Stafford, who helped the Lions lead 24-0 at halftime. “I just think that we had a great week of practice and it showed in the game.”
Here are some other takeaways from the Packers-Lions game.
Green Bay kicker Mason Crosby cost his team 13 points, missing a career-high four field goals in a game along with an extra point.
“I don’t usually get this much attention unless I’ve done something really good or really bad,” Crosby said, surrounded by reporters. “This one is unfortunately really bad.”
Golladay had four receptions for 98 yards and a touchdown, which helped the Lions lead 31-14 in the fourth quarter. His play of the day was a 60-yard reception in which he leaped to catch while covered closely by cornerback Josh Jackson and went on to stiff-arm safety Ha Ha Clinton-Dix onto his back.
“He’s obviously a big kid, physical kid, can run, wants to be a really good player,” Stafford said.
The 6-foot-4, 213-pound Golladay has 27 receptions for 428 yards and three TDs this season. The second-year pro, who was a third-round pick from Northern Illinois, had 28 receptions for 477 yards and three scores as a rookie.
Green Bay was flagged 12 times for 112 yards and one of most costly penalty allowed Detroit to convert a third down. After stopping Golladay short of a first down in the third quarter, rookie safety Tony Brown stood over him and was penalized for taunting.
“The negatives that you want to talk about is really about the penalties,” Packers coach Mike McCarthy said.
NOT A COINCIDENCE
The Lions entered the game giving up an NFL-high 158 yards rushing per game. They allowed Green Bay to gain just 98 yards. That forced Rodgers to pass 52 times, the third-highest total of his career, for 442 yards, the second-highest total of his career.
Detroit had kept only one other team to fewer than 100 yards rushing this season and that was the Patriots, the only other team it beat this season.
Green Bay (2-2-1) will have an extra day of rest and preparation before hosting San Francisco on Oct. 15. The Lions are off until Oct. 21 when they play at Miami.
Jaguars 14, Chiefs 30
KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — Patrick Mahomes had finally thrown an interception, the first all season for the Chiefs’ talented young quarterback, and the Jacksonville offense had shuffled back onto the field.
The Chiefs immediately strip-sacked Blake Bortles to take the ball right back.
Their beleaguered defense also picked off Bortles four times and sacked him five, and Chris Jones took one of those interceptions back for a touchdown, proving during a 30-14 romp over Jacksonville on a soggy Sunday at Arrowhead Stadium that the Chiefs are more than just an offensive dynamo.
“It shows what kind of team we are,” said Mahomes, who finished with 313 yards passing and ran for a touchdown. “I’m just excited to come out with a win on a day the defense made plays.”
Oh, the league’s highest-scoring offense still made plays.
Kareem Hunt ran for 87 yards and a touchdown, and Travis Kelce hauled in five catches for 100 yards, helping the Chiefs (5-0) move the ball at will against the NFL’s top-rated defense.
Tyreek Hill, who was frequently matched up with the Jaguars’ Jalen Ramsey in an entertaining one-on-one affair, added four catches for 61 yards as the Chiefs rolled up 424 yards total.
“That play calling was something I’ve never seen before,” said the Jaguars’ Tashaun Gipson, who picked off Mahomes before leaving with a groin injury. “Tip your hat to them. Obviously, the offensive personnel they’ve got — they came out here and they beat us.”
The game eventually grew into a testy affair, resulting in a pair of ejections.
Jones was booted in the second half after he dropped an elbow on a Jaguars lineman while both were on the ground following a point-after attempt. Then, pass rusher Dee Ford joined him in the locker room when he was whistled for his second unsportsmanlike conduct penalty.
“You can’t let emotions get the best of you,” Chiefs coach Andy Reid said.
If anybody had reason to get frustrated it was Bortles, who was 33 of 61 for 430 yards with a touchdown and those four interceptions. Most of his yardage came in garbage time, and while he ran for a touchdown, he also was strip-sacked during Jacksonville’s miserable first half.
Mahomes led the Chiefs 73 yards on their first possession, finishing the drive himself with a short scramble for a touchdown. Then he led the league’s high-powered offense 82 yards for a field goal a few minutes later, leaving Jacksonville’s vaunted D second-guessing itself.
Meanwhile, the Jaguars’ offense was having all kinds of problems.
Jacksonville (3-2) drove inside the Kansas City 5 early in the second quarter, but an incomplete fade on third down and another incompletion on fourth turned the ball over. Bortles was stripped on the first play of their next possession, and he threw the pick-6 to Jones on the first play of the next.
The calamitous half ended when Bortles, trying to force a pass into the end zone, instead bounced it off his offensive lineman’s helmet and right to Steven Nelson for another interception.
“It felt a lot like some games we’ve had in the past, just moved the ball, there were some good things done, we had some bad turnovers,” Bortles said. “You can’t turn the ball over.”
In Bortles’ defense, his offensive line didn’t give him a whole lot of time. Along with the five sacks, the Chiefs were credited with 11 hurries, spending most of the game in his face.
Bortles’ only real highlight came late in the game, when he escaped the collapsing pocket and angled toward the sideline, then lowered his shoulder to finish off a 21-yard touchdown run .
The Jaguars recovered the onside kick, only for the Chiefs to force another turnover on downs.
“They did a good job early in the game getting a lead. They did a good job early on third downs in the game. Offensively, we didn’t execute,” Jaguars coach Doug Marrone said. “Again, we had a poor showing in the red zone, we had turnovers, and the game got out of hand. Got to play better. We’ve got to coach better, play better. We got to go back and get this team back on track.”
RAMSEY VS HILL
Hill had nothing but praise for Ramsey after the game, though he did beat the Jaguars cornerback for one long gain. As for Ramsey? “I felt like I did pretty well. Really well, to be honest,” he said. “I won the majority of the matchups today, put it that way.”
STATS AND STREAKS
The Chiefs’ first TD was the first allowed by Jacksonville on a team’s opening possession. … The Jaguars have not started 2-0 on the road since the 2007 season. … Jaguars RB T.J. Yeldon had 53 yards rushing. … Chiefs WR Sammy Watkins had six catches for 78 yards.
Jaguars: RB Corey Grant (foot) and LT Josh Wells (groin) left in the first half. Ramsey left on the opening series after taking a knee to the helmet, but returned to play the rest of the game.
Chiefs: OLBs Justin Houston (hamstring) and Tanoh Kpassagnon (ankle) and FSs Armani Watts (groin) and Eric Murray (lower leg) left the game in the first half. RG Laurent Duvernay-Tardif left in the final minutes with a fractured fibia in his left leg.
Jaguars: Visit the Cowboys next Sunday.
Chiefs: Head to New England for a Sunday night showdown.
Broncos 16, Jets 34
EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. (AP) — Isaiah Crowell ran all over the Denver Broncos’ suddenly leaky defense — and kept his touchdown celebration low-key this time around.
The New York running back ran for a franchise-record 219 yards, including a 77-yard touchdown , and Sam Darnold threw two TD passes to Robby Anderson, including a 76-yarder, to help the big-play Jets snap a three-game losing streak with a 34-16 victory over the Denver Broncos on Sunday.
“It means a lot to me,” Crowell said. “I’ve got to give all the credit to my O-line. I can’t really take the credit. Really, it was all them. I mean, the holes were open. Anybody could’ve run through them. It just happened to be me.
“They really set the record.”
Crowell needed just 15 carries to break the team record of 210 yards rushing set by Thomas Jones in 2009 against Buffalo. His 14.6 yards per carry set an NFL record for a player with at least 15 attempts, according to Elias Sports Bureau.
Bilal Powell added 99 yards rushing, and New York finished with 323 yards on the ground — second-most in team history — and 512 overall yards.
After an ugly 20-yard punt early in the second quarter by Colby Wadman, who replaced the injured Marquette King, the Jets (2-3) took advantage immediately. Crowell took the handoff, scooted to the left sideline and zipped into the end zone — getting some nice blocks from receivers Anderson, Pryor and Jermaine Kearse along the way — for a 77-yard yard touchdown that tied the game.
Crowell was fined $13,369 by the NFL and given a stern lecture from coach Todd Bowles for his crude TD celebration two weeks ago in Cleveland when he wiped his rear end with the football. This time, Crowell simply tossed the ball to the turf in the end zone.
“I didn’t want to do anything that would cost my team a penalty,” Crowell said.
The Jets were just getting started with big plays.
On their next possession, Darnold found Anderson streaking down the field uncovered and connected for a 76-yard touchdown that put New York ahead 14-7 with 10:46 left in the half. It was the longest TD catch of Anderson’s career.
According to the Jets, it was the first time they have had multiple TDs on offense of 75 yards or more in the same game since Sept. 24, 1972, against the Baltimore Colts. Joe Namath tossed TD passes of 79 and 80 yards to Rich Caster in that one. It was the first time the Jets had a TD catch and a TD run of at least 75 yards.
“Every single week, we can do that,” Darnold said. “I’m just really excited for next week.”
Darnold also had a TD toss to Terrelle Pryor that sealed the game late in the fourth quarter for the Jets. The rookie quarterback finished 10 of 22 for 198 yards and the three scores with an interception to help New York to its first win since the season opener.
“It was really a team effort,” Darnold said, “and I couldn’t be more proud.”
The Jets’ defense came up big, too, while playing without coordinator Kacy Rodgers, who is dealing with what Bowles has called a “serious” illness. Bowles ran the defense against the Broncos and the Jets kept the pressure on Keenum all game, sacking him four times — including two by Leonard Williams.
“We had our brother down and that was our message that we wanted to play for him,” safety Jamal Adams said of Rodgers. “I know he’s smiling right now.”
They nearly had one more big play when Marcus Maye intercepted Keenum’s final pass and returned it 104 yards — the longest in team history — before being taken down by Courtland Sutton at the 1 to end the game.
It was also the longest non-touchdown on an INT return, according to Elias.
Keenum finished 35 of 51 for 377 yards with touchdown passes to Sutton and Demaryius Thomas for the Broncos (2-3).
“We usually are a pretty stout defense,” Broncos linebacker Von Miller said. “Today, we weren’t. We got gashed over the top two or three times today. It was a rough one.”
The Jets turned the ball over on their second play from scrimmage when Adam Gotsis knocked the ball out of Powell’s hands and recovered at New York’s 20. Three plays later, Keenum found Sutton in the end zone from 8 yards out to give Denver a 7-0 lead.
It was Keenum’s first TD pass since Week 1, when he had three in a win over Seattle, and the first touchdown reception of Sutton’s career.
Keenum completed passes of 31 yards to Thomas and 24 to DaeSean Hamilton to put the Broncos at the Jets 7, but New York came up with a red-zone stop and held Denver to a 30-yard field goal by Brandon McManus to make it 14-10 with 3:58 left in the half.
On New York’s next possession, Darnold reared back from the 35 and fired a perfectly placed pass into the left corner of the end zone, where it dropped into Anderson’s hands just beyond a pursuing Bradley Roby for another touchdown.
“Anyone who saw the game knows it wasn’t good enough,” Broncos safety Justin Simmons said of Denver’s defense. “It’s not what we do. We’ve got to be better.”
Jets: CB Buster Skrine left in the first quarter with a concussion and didn’t return. Skrine started in place of Trumaine Johnson, who was sidelined with a strained quadriceps.
Broncos: CB Adam Jones was ruled out in the second half after injuring a leg.
There were no individual protests by players on either team during the singing of the national anthem.
Broncos: home vs. Los Angeles Rams next Sunday.
Jets: home vs. Indianapolis Colts next Sunday.
Dolphins 17, Bengals 27
CINCINNATI (AP) — Sam Hubbard had missed on his attempt to get Ryan Tannehill.
Next thing he knew, the ball was flying right toward him and there was nobody between him and the end zone.
The rookie had an improbably easy time completing Cincinnati’s big comeback.
Michael Johnson returned an interception for the tying score, and Hubbard went 19 yards with a fumble for the clinching touchdown Sunday, rallying the Bengals from a 17-point deficit to a 27-17 victory over the Miami Dolphins.
Not even those involved could explain it.
“I really don’t know what happened,” Hubbard said. “I just saw the ball and it stuck. Thank God I was able to hold onto it and waddle into the end zone.”
With Joe Mixon back from knee surgery and the defense making more game-turning plays in the fourth quarter, Cincinnati (4-1) extended its best start since its 2015 playoff season. This one came a week after A.J. Green caught a winning touchdown pass in Atlanta with 7 seconds left.
“These NFL games are crazy, man,” Green said. “It’s an up-and-down roller coaster ride. You ride it and hope you come out on top.”
The Dolphins (3-2) had plenty of blame to go around for their meltdown, helping the Bengals score those 27 consecutive points with a variety of mistakes — the biggest ones by their quarterback.
Andy Dalton threw an 18-yard touchdown pass to Mixon to start the comeback, completing a drive that was extended by T.J. McDonald’s personal foul on a third-down incompletion. Mixon returned after missing two games following knee surgery and ran for 93 yards in addition to catching three passes.
From there, the Dolphins fell apart.
“When I got the touchdown, the momentum shifted,” Mixon said. “After that, you started seeing sack after sack, pick after pick, touchdown after touchdown. It was crazy, man.”
The Bengals’ young defense sealed wins over Indianapolis and Baltimore with late turnovers. Two freaky bounces changed this one in the fourth quarter.
Under pressure, Tannehill decided to throw the ball at the feet of tight end Durham Smythe rather than take a sack. Tannehill was hit as he released the ball, which caromed off Smythe’s helmet and went directly to Johnson, who ran 22 yards untouched for the tying score.
After Randy Bullock’s 20-yard field goal gave the Bengals their first lead at 20-17, Tannehill was hit again by Carlos Dunlap and the ball flew to Hubbard, who ran untouched 19 yards to the end zone with 2:37 left to clinch it.
“I didn’t know what happened,” said Tannehill, who was 20 of 35 for 185 yards with three turnovers. “I heard the crowd cheer and everyone run away from me, so I knew something bad happened.”
The Dolphins started the season 3-0, but have gotten flattened by New England and shocked by the Bengals in the past two weeks.
Miami made the big plays early, but couldn’t close it out with a 17-0 lead. Kiko Alonso picked off Dalton’s tipped pass near the end zone to stop Cincinnati’s opening drive, Vincent Taylor blocked a Bengals field goal attempt, and Jakeem Grant returned a punt 70 yards for a touchdown with 23 seconds left in the first half.
Tannehill put together a 95-yard drive for the other touchdown, culminating with his 22-yard pass to running back Kenyan Drake. Tannehill was 20 of 35 for 185 yards.
AT THE TOP
Green had six catches for 112 yards, moving ahead of Chad Johnson for the club record with his 32nd career 100-yard game.
The Bengals hadn’t been shut out in an opening half and rallied to win since 2004, when they trailed Miami 3-0 at halftime and pulled it out 16-13. It was only the fourth time in franchise history that they scored 24 points in the fourth quarter and won — they also did it in 1972, 1978 and 2004.
Grant’s 70-yard punt return made him the first Dolphin to score on a reception, a kickoff return and a punt return in the same season. He had a 102-yard kickoff return against Tennessee in the season opener. Grant joins Dante Hall (2003) as the only NFL players with a 100-yard kickoff return, a 70-yard punt return and a 50-yard TD catch in the same season. The last NFL player with a touchdown of all three varieties was the Chiefs’ Tyreek Hill in 2016.
Dalton’s pass for Green was tipped and intercepted by linebacker Kiko Alonso, ending the Bengals’ opening drive and their streak of scoring on their past 34 trips inside the 20-yard line. It was the longest active streak in the NFL.
Bengals linebacker Vontaze Burfict returned from his latest NFL suspension and had seven tackles, second on the team.
Dolphins: LT Laremy Tunsil left with a concussion during the Bengals’ fourth-quarter comeback, further depleting the Dolphins’ offensive line.
Bengals: LB Preston Brown walked off the field in the second quarter after getting his right ankle checked but returned.
Dolphins host the Bears next Sunday.
Bengals host the Steelers next Sunday.
Ravens 9, Browns 12 OT
CLEVELAND (AP) — Once Baker Mayfield summoned the courage, the rookie quarterback looked in time to see Greg Joseph’s low, line-drive kick somehow go through the uprights.
Mayfield’s mouth opened in disbelief.
The Browns won again.
And in this unpredictable NFL season, Cleveland’s rapid rise may be the strangest twist of them all.
Joseph’s 37-yard field goal — a knuckleball the rookie was certain had been blocked — with 2 seconds left in overtime gave Cleveland a 12-9 win over the Baltimore Ravens on Sunday.
After Mayfield made a clutch third-down throw to help drive the Browns (2-2-1) into position, Joseph, who was cut by Miami this summer and signed after Week 2 following Zane Gonzalez’s release, came through to give Cleveland its first AFC North win in 19 tries.
“I couldn’t decide whether I wanted to look at the kick or not, so I turned around at the last second and saw it was pretty low,” said Mayfield, who passed for 342 yards and a touchdown in his second NFL start. “It wasn’t a pretty kick but it went in. It also wasn’t a pretty win, but it counts.”
Believe it or not, the Browns are legit.
They’ve played three overtime games in five weeks, and if not for some missed kicks in New Orleans and questionable call last week in Oakland, Cleveland could be unbeaten.
“We have a team right now that is starting to believe in themselves, and rightfully so,” Mayfield said. “I take a lot of pride in the culture change and being positive, always moving forward and doing your job no matter what the situation is. That was big for us.”
When the final kick sailed through, Browns fans celebrated just the team’s second win in two seasons and Joseph, who missed an extra point in the first half, was mobbed by his teammates.
It was vindication for Joseph, who also missed a 55-yarder at the end of regulation.
“I’ll never forget anything about this game, the high points and the low points,” he said. “It was awesome to see it go through, but I’m here for a reason and I believe I can kick in this league.”
The Ravens (3-2) had plenty of chances, but Joe Flacco threw a costly interception in the first half and the Browns blocked one of Justin Tucker’s field goal tries.
In his first start at home, Mayfield threw a 19-yard TD pass to Rashard Higgins, but his biggest play was a 39-yard completion to rookie Derrick Willies on Cleveland’s winning drive.
“Baker just makes plays, man, and he knows what to do in tough situations,” Browns guard Joel Bitonio said.
The Ravens, who got another strong effort from their defense, also had a chance to win it in the final minute of regulation, but wide receiver Michael Crabtree couldn’t hold onto Flacco’s pass in the back of the end zone.
“I should have made that catch,” Crabtree said. “The game would have been over. I put that on me. If I have to catch 2,000 balls a week in practice, I’m going to have to do that.”
Tucker then tied it with a 32-yard field goal with 52 seconds left.
On their third possession of OT, the Browns started at their own 5-yard line and were at their 18 facing a third down when Mayfield zipped a pass over the middle to Willies, who didn’t have any catches coming in and was playing after Higgins went out with a knee injury.
Duke Johnson ripped off a 15-yard run and had two more short carries before the Browns sent in Joseph, a college walk-on who was released by the Dolphins after training camp but got a another chance after Gonzalez missed four kicks in a Week 2 loss at New Orleans.
Cleveland’s win was also the Browns’ first in 37 tries on a Sunday, and it gave Jackson his first victory inside the division in three seasons.
Flacco finished 29 of 56 for 298 yards and one interception, but Baltimore’s offense struggled to get into a rhythm all day.
“We had our chances,” Flacco said. “In these kind of games when you have little chances, you have to be able to take advantage of them. The couple that we had, we probably just didn’t execute well.”
Browns rookie cornerback Denzel Ward continues to dazzle.
The No. 4 overall draft pick intercepted Flacco i n the first half and then blocked Tucker’s 48-yard attempt on the final play of the first half.
Ward has three interceptions this season, and he’s impressed his teammates with his toughness.
“The dude was everywhere again,” Browns defensive end Myles Garrett said. “He’s just on top of guys at all times.”
Browns: Jackson said Higgins will undergo an MRI on Monday. He had three catches for 66 yards and the TD before going out.
Cleveland’s defense was solid last season, but didn’t force enough mistakes. That’s changed as the Browns now lead the league with 15 takeaways after recording 13 all last season.
Cleveland was called for 10 penalties, while Baltimore was only whistled for four, and one of them came in overtime and wiped out a big run by Alex Collins.
Ravens: At Tennessee on Oct. 14.
Browns: Host the Los Angeles Chargers on Oct. 14.
Titans 12, Bills 13
ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. (AP) — Safety Jordan Poyer and the Buffalo Bills couldn’t care less about style points.
After being on the losing end of some lopsided decisions, an offensively challenged, field-goal-dominated 13-12 win over the Tennessee Titans on Sunday is all that mattered.
“Two-and-three is a lot better than 1-4,” Poyer said, referring to the Bills record. “It’s never ugly when you win.”
Stephen Hauschka overcame a botched field-goal attempt in the final minutes of the first half by hitting a 46-yard attempt as time expired. Running back LeSean McCoy broke from a September slump with 85 yards rushing — matching the combined total from his first three games.
And Poyer helped anchor an injury-depleted secondary on a defense that forced three turnovers, held the Titans to 221 yards and limited them to scoring four field goals.
Buffalo bounced back from a 22-0 loss at Green Bay last weekend. Its defense showed improvement after surrendering 75 points over six quarters, starting with a 47-3 season-opening loss at Baltimore, followed by the first half of a 31-20 loss to the Los Angeles Chargers.
“I think there was a glimpse of it,” defensive tackle Kyle Williams said in suggesting the young, patchwork Bills are finding a hint of their identity.
The Titans (3-2) took a step backward in having a three-game win streak snapped, and squandered a chance for their best start since winning their first 10 games in 2008.
Quarterback Marcus Mariota failed to show the flair he displayed last week in rallying the Titans to a 26-23 overtime win over the defending Super Bowl champion Philadelphia Eagles. Mariota finished 14 of 26 for 129 yards passing and an interception against Buffalo.
The Titans crossed midfield four times, with each drive ending with Ryan Succop hitting field goals.
“Not very good. Yeah, I mean we left one out there today,” Mariota said. “If you’re not ready to play, it doesn’t matter who you’re playing.”
The Titans’ best chance of finding the end zone slipped through their fingers early in the fourth quarter.
Facing third-and-4 at Buffalo’s 23, Mariota avoided the pass rush and scrambled to his left, where he lobbed to receiver Nick Williams, who was wide open in the end zone. Williams had the pass drop through his hands while attempting to make an over-the-shoulder catch.
Tennessee settled for Succop hitting a 39-yard field goal to cut Buffalo’s lead to 10-9.
Bills quarterback Josh Allen was hardly better. The rookie first-round pick finished 10 of 19 for 82 yards and an interception, but did open the scoring on a 14-yard touchdown scamper.
Allen’s interception nearly cost the Bills midway through the fourth quarter. Late in finding Andre Holmes to his right, Allen’s pass was tipped and intercepted by Adoree’ Jackson at the Tennessee 46.
The Titans settled for Succop hitting a go-ahead 50-yard field goal after Mariota fumbled and was fortunate to have the ball bounce off his foot and roll out of bounds.
The Bills responded with an 11-play, run-dominated drive that covered the final 4:43. McCoy and Ivory combined for 43 yards.
“That’s how it’s supposed to be,” McCoy said, referring to a run-oriented game plan in which he had a season-best 24 carries. “We stuck to it.”
BOTCHED CHANCE I
The Bills botched a 30-yard field-goal attempt in the second quarter when rookie holder/punter Corey Bojorquez caught the snap and inexplicably stood up before suddenly kneeling in a bid to place the ball. Bojorquez then threw an incompletion.
Bojorquez hurt his right shoulder but returned for the second half.
Bojorquez said he misunderstood what he heard from the coaches.
Hauschka, meantime, had an inkling he might get a chance to win the game.
“The pace of the game, I was going to be ready for it, and I wanted that opportunity,” he said. “I’m glad I got a shot at it.”
BOTCHED CHANCE II
The Titans followed Buffalo’s missed opportunity by settling for Succop matching a career high by hitting a 54-yard field goal as time expired. They had three timeouts left when penalized for delay of game while facing a third-and-4 at Buffalo’s 26. They were backed up again on the next snap when Trent Murphy sacked Mariota for a 5-yard loss.
Bills rookie linebacker Tremaine Edmunds and defensive end Shaq Lawson had forced fumbles, while rookie cornerback Taron Johnson had an interception. Buffalo has eight takeaways (five forced fumbles and three interceptions) in its past three games.
Buffalo Bills coach Sean McDermott acknowledged he and GM Brandon Beane have considered signing 12-year veteran quarterback Derek Anderson, but stressed “nothing is final at this point.” McDermott and Beane were formerly with Carolina, where they both became familiar with Anderson, who spent the previous seven seasons with the Panthers. Buffalo is down to Allen and second-year player Nathan Peterman at quarterback after trading A.J. McCarron to Oakland on Sept. 1.
Titans: Two-time Pro Bowl LT Taylor Lewan did not return after hurting his foot in the second quarter. Titans were missing two starters with S Kenny Vaccaro (right elbow) and LB Wesley Woodyard (shoulder) inactive.
Bills: Had just three healthy safeties in their lineup with starter Micah Hyde (groin) and backup Rafael Bush (shoulder) inactive.
Titans: Host Baltimore on Oct. 14.
Bills: At Houston on Oct. 14 for fourth road game in six weeks.
Raiders 10, Chargers 26
CARSON, Calif. (AP) — The Los Angeles Chargers’ offense was stuck in neutral for the first 25 minutes of Sunday’s game against the Oakland Raiders. A broken play provided the needed spark.
The game was tied 3-3 until Austin Ekeler took Philip Rivers’ swing pass and turned into a 44-yard touchdown . That was part of 19 straight points by the Chargers en route to their 26-10 victory over the Raiders.
“We were doing OK. We weren’t playing great but that kind of sparked it,” said Rivers, who threw for 339 yards and two touchdowns. “We got another stop and then punched it in. I felt then we were in control the rest of the way.”
Rivers bobbled the shotgun snap on the first-and-10 play, but quickly corralled it and got it to Ekeler while three Oakland players were blitzing. The second-year running back eluded two Raiders at the 40 and then got a good block from Keenan Allen up the left sideline to score his third touchdown of the season with 4:04 remaining in the second quarter.
“I just saw the pressure coming off the edge. And it was a hot call, so it was coming to me right away,” Ekeler said. “I just ended up catching the ball and looking downfield from there.”
The Ekeler touchdown was one of four plays of 25 yards or more for the Chargers (3-2), who are third in the league with 29 plays of 20 yards or more; the Rams and Chiefs each have 30.
All of that added up to Rivers’ 59th 300-yard passing game of his 15-year career and his eighth against the Raiders. He completed 22 of 27 passes and had a passer rating of 143.4.
Melvin Gordon had 120 yards from scrimmage (58 rushing, 62 receiving). His 1-yard run during the second quarter gave Los Angeles (3-2) a 17-3 lead at halftime. The scoring drive started after Jahleel Addae recovered a Martavis Bryant fumble at the Raiders 45.
The Chargers’ defense had three sacks and forced two turnovers which resulted in 13 points. Oakland’s Marshawn Lynch came into the game fourth in the league in rushing but was held to 31 yards on nine carries.
“It’s an energy game, man, and you got good energy built all around you, that’s what it is all about,” Gordon said. “We got to feel off that. That’s how we become a great team.”
Derek Carr was 24 of 33 for 268 yards for the Raiders (1-4). He accounted for Oakland’s lone touchdown in the fourth quarter on a 1-yard pass to Jordy Nelson which brought the Raiders within 26-10.
He also had a costly interception in the end zone to Melvin Ingram during the third quarter. The Chargers turned that into a 96-yard, eight-play drive that was capped with Rivers’ 13-yard TD pass to Virgil Green early in the fourth period.
“We had bad plays today,” Raiders coach Jon Gruden said. “I think we pressed a little bit. The play calling needs to improve. That’s my job. We’ve got to play better collectively than we did today.”
HOME SWEET HOME?
The crowd at StubHub Center was predominantly Raiders fans, but it didn’t matter to the Chargers, who have won seven of their last eight at their temporary home until the new stadium at Inglewood opens in 2020.
In order to silence their “home” crowd, the Chargers did take the ball on offense after they won the coin toss. They turned that into a seven-play drive and a 49-yard field goal by Caleb Sturgis.
TWO FIRSTS FOR INGRAM
Ingram’s third-quarter interception was his first in 82 regular-season games. He did have an interception in the 2013 playoffs against Cincinnati.
The seventh-year defensive end also got his first NFL carry in the second quarter on second-and-goal from the Oakland 1 but was stopped for no gain.
“I touch the ball all the time in practice. It was just fun,” Ingram said. “Being in the offensive huddle it felt like I was at home.”
NEW HOLDER, SAME RESULT
The Chargers signed punter Donnie Jones to be the new holder for Sturgis, but Sturgis still missed an extra point.
Sturgis’ PAT attempt after the Green touchdown bounced off the upright for his fourth miss of the season and third in the past two games. The sixth-year kicker has missed four extra points this season, equaling the amount he had over three seasons in Philadelphia from 2015-17.
Sturgis was also 2 of 3 on field goals. His 48-yard attempt on the last play of the first half was on line until it veered wide left at the last moment.
“The extra point did bother me a little bit, but we’ll figure out what happened there,” Chargers coach Anthony Lynn said. “He’s been kicking with a lot of confidence, so I’m not concerned about it.”
Raiders: face Seahawks next Sunday in London.
Chargers: at Browns next Sunday.
Vikings 23, Eagles 21
PHILADELPHIA (AP) — Linval Joseph whipped out the sunglasses, sat on the bench and pulled on the oxygen mask.
Rest up, big man. Job well done.
Kirk Cousins threw for 301 yards and one touchdown, the 330-pound Joseph returned a fumble 64 yards for a score and the Minnesota Vikings beat the Philadelphia Eagles 23-21 Sunday in a rematch of last season’s NFC championship game.
“I love seeing Linval on the sideline in his glasses after plays. They have a lot of fun,” Cousins said.
Carson Wentz and the rest of Philadelphia’s offense again struggled as the defending Super Bowl champions fell to 2-3.
Nick Foles led the Eagles to a 38-7 rout over Case Keenum and Minnesota’s top-ranked defense in the title game on his way to earning MVP honors against New England.
Trying to rally from a 17-point deficit midway through the third quarter, the Eagles were set up to take the lead after Roc Thomas dropped a backward pass and Nigel Bradham recovered the fumble at the Vikings 30 in the fourth quarter. But Wentz was called for intentional grounding and coach Doug Pederson elected not to let Jake Elliott try a 58-yarder.
“We were in great position and we go backward,” Wentz said. “It’s frustrating.”
Dan Bailey, who missed two field goals earlier, nailed a 52-yard field goal to extend the lead to 23-14 with 2:47 left.
Wentz fired a 7-yard TD pass to Zach Ertz to cut it to 23-21 with 1:09 left but Adam Thielen recovered the onside kick.
The Vikings (2-2-1) got an excellent performance from Cousins, who completed 30 of 37 passes, to avoid falling further behind in the NFC North. Cousins became the first player in NFL history to complete at least 30 passes in four consecutive games.
“The pressure keeps building because we know what kind of team we could have if we can overcome some of the things we’ve been doing,” Vikings coach Mike Zimmer said. “There was a lot of pressure to come in here and get a win. They studied hard, came out and worked their rear ends off.”
Cousins praised offensive coordinator John DeFilippo, who was Philadelphia’s quarterbacks coach the past two seasons.
“Credit to Coach Flip for being aggressive as a play caller, giving us a chance,” Cousins said.
Joseph snatched Wentz’s fumble out of the air and rumbled the distance to give the Vikings a 10-3 lead in the second quarter. Stephen Weatherly knocked the ball loose and Wentz couldn’t recover to catch Joseph from behind after the strip-sack.
After a roughing penalty by Michael Bennett negated his sack, Cousins tossed a 3-yard touchdown pass to Thielen to extend the lead to 17-3 at halftime. Bennett hit Cousins in the upper thigh, held his legs before letting go and Cousins fell backward.
The Eagles finally got going on the opening drive of the third quarter, but Eric Kendricks forced Jay Ajayi to fumble at the Vikings 5 and recovered it. Cousins connected deep with Thielen for 68 yards on the next play and the Vikings reached the Eagles 2 before settling for Bailey’s 22-yard field goal.
“There is no excuse down there,” Ajayi said. “I didn’t do my job.”
Jake Elliott kicked a 30-yarder to tie it at 3-3 after Philadelphia wasted an opportunity inside the red zone. Shelton Gibson made a leaping 48-yard reception at the Vikings 17. But Wendell Smallwood dropped a pass on third-and-3 and the Eagles settled.
Down 20-3, the Eagles had a first down at the Vikings 15, but Wentz took a sack and they ended up kicking a field goal.
Wentz tossed a 12-yard touchdown pass to Wendell Smallwood, who benefited from the NFL’s new catch rule because the ball came loose when he hit the ground. Smallwood then ran in for the 2-point conversion to get Philadelphia within 20-14.
Bennett sat on the bench during the national anthem in protest of racial and social injustice. Bennett stayed in the tunnel during the anthem the first month of the season but already ran onto the field during pregame introductions.
GET IN LINE
The Eagles were flagged three times for illegal formation.
Vikings: LT Riley Reiff left the game with a foot injury. … RB Dalvin Cook (hamstring) was inactive.
Eagles: S Corey Graham left the game with a hamstring injury. … DE Derek Barnett (shoulder) and DT Haloti Ngata (calf) and RB Darren Sproles (hamstring) were inactive.
Vikings: Host the Arizona Cardinals (1-4) next Sunday.
Eagles: Visit the New York Giants (1-4) on Thursday night.
Rams 33, Seahawks 31
SEATTLE (AP) — Andrew Whitworth was sitting on the bench with his helmet on the ground. Jared Goff was busy in conversation with referee Clete Blakeman about a previous play. Initially, the Los Angeles Rams believed coach Sean McVay would take the safe play and punt rather than the risk of going for it on fourth down with less than 2 minutes remaining inside Rams territory.
That’s not the style of McVay, or these still unbeaten Rams.
“We knew we were going to get it,” running back Todd Gurley said.
Rather than give the ball back to Russell Wilson, McVay believed in his offense to pick up less than a yard. And when Jared Goff plowed forward to convert the fourth-and-1 with 1:39 left, the Rams celebrated a 33-31 victory over the Seattle Seahawks that kept Los Angeles perfect at 5-0.
Gurley carried the load, rushing for three touchdowns, and Goff passed for one score and threw for 321 yards despite losing two of his top receivers to concussions in the first half. But it was the final plunge by Goff that sealed a victory over a division rival and left the Rams with a three-game lead in the NFC West.
“That offense has (guts) and we’re riding behind them,” defensive end Michael Brockers said.
Cairo Santos atoned for a missed extra point with a 39-yard field goal with 6:05 remaining to give the Rams a 33-31 lead, capping a 61-yard drive that took 4½ minutes.
That still left time for Wilson, but Seattle (2-3) made a pair of critical mistakes after moving into position to win. Wilson hit Tyler Lockett for 44 yards on the second play of the drive to the Rams’ 32-yard line. But a pair of penalties backed up the Seahawks to the Rams’ 45. Facing third-and-23, Wilson was pressured from the pocket by Cory Littleton and Seattle punted with 3:38 left.
The Seahawks never got the ball back.
“That was hard. We’re there. Knock a couple more yards out, kick a field goal and win the game,” Seattle coach Pete Carroll said. “Unfortunately we didn’t get it.”
Gurley had runs of 12, 2 and 7 yards on the final drive, but was stuffed on third-and-1 at the 42 with 1:39 left. The Rams initially trotted out punter Johnny Hekker, but Seattle used its final timeout following a measurement. Given more time to think about it, McVay put the offense back on the field and Goff plowed forward for 2 yards.
“It was all riding on that one play and we got a really, really good jump on them up front,” Goff said.
Rams receivers Brandin Cooks and Cooper Kupp both suffered concussions late in the first half. Los Angeles turned to the likes of Josh Reynolds, Tyler Higbee and Gerald Everett to make up for the absences. And the team leaned heavily on Gurley and wide receiver Robert Woods. Gurley finished with 77 yards rushing on 22 carries, and twice scored on 2-yard runs and added a 5-yard TD. Woods had five catches for 92 yards.
“You need to know that when these games come around, can you finish. That’s what we did today,” Gurley said.
Wilson threw for three touchdowns and Seattle had a running back top 100 yards rushing for a third straight game as Chris Carson rumbled for 116 yards. The running game was the foundation for all of Wilson’s success through the air as Seattle finished with 190 yards on the ground, including 68 yards and a touchdown from Mike Davis.
With Los Angeles needing to respect the run, Wilson found his shots over the top. His 39-yard TD pass to Lockett in the first half came off play-action, as did the 30-yard TD toss to David Moore in the third quarter. Both times, Rams cornerback Marcus Peters was beaten, and the Seahawks got the big plays needed to hang with the Rams. Moore also had a 3-yard TD catch.
Cooks was hurt late in the second quarter when he was hit by Tedric Thompson as he came across the field. Most of the hit was with Thompson’s shoulder, but there was some helmet-to-helmet impact and Cooks appeared to be immediately knocked out. He jogged off the field on his own but was ruled out early in the second half.
Kupp was also lost with a concussion, although the play he was injured on wasn’t obvious. Kupp was in on the desperation throw into the end zone on the final play of the first half, but didn’t rejoin his teammates to start the third quarter.
It was an eventful first start for Tedric Thompson replacing Earl Thomas.
Thompson tackled Gurley at the 1-yard line in the second quarter that ended up saving the Seahawks four points when Gurley was stuffed on third-and-goal and the Rams settled for a 19-yard field goal by Santos. And he intercepted Goff’s desperation throw to end the first half. But he also whiffed on a trio of plays, including Woods on a 31-yard slant route, Kupp on his TD reception and Woods on a 56-yard fly sweep late in the third quarter.
Rams: Los Angeles is at Denver next Sunday.
Seahawks: Seattle makes the trip to London to face Oakland next Sunday.
Cardinals 28, 49ers 18
SANTA CLARA, Calif. (AP) — Josh Rosen hit San Francisco with a deep strike on his first snap and let Arizona’s opportunistic defense take over from there.
That formula added up to the long-awaited first win of the season for the Cardinals.
Rosen threw a 75-yard touchdown pass to fellow rookie Christian Kirk on Arizona’s first play from scrimmage and the Cardinals used five takeaways to give first-year coach Steve Wilks his first career win , 28-18 over the 49ers on Sunday.
“There’s no such thing as an ugly win in the National Football League, particularly when it’s your first one,” Wilks said.
If any qualified, this might be it. The Cardinals (1-4) averaged just 3 yards per play after the opening snap, with their only other scores coming on Josh Bynes’ fumble return for a TD and David Johnson TD runs on two short drives after turnovers by the 49ers (1-4).
The Niners had the decided edge in yardage (447-220), first downs (33-10) and offensive plays (92-49), but Arizona’s defense delivered in key moments with two interceptions and three fumble recoveries.
“It shows how mentally tough we truly are,” said safety Tre Boston, who had an interception. “An 0-4 team if you’re not mentally tough and you don’t believe in your process, you lose that game right there. You see yourself in the same predicament you’ve been in and you see yourself losing. That’s not us. We saw ourselves winning.”
Niners backup quarterback C.J. Beathard completed all five passes on the opening drive — four of which were behind the line — and gave San Francisco a 6-0 lead on a 5-yard shovel pass to Matt Breida. The Niners botched the extra point and were trailing for good 10 seconds later on a day when the offense struggled to finish.
“You look at a lot of those (stats), it’s hard to find how you lost a game,” coach Kyle Shanahan said. “Then it’s very easy when you look at the turnover column. I haven’t been part of any game, I don’t think many people have, where five turnovers to zero leads to a win. We have to improve that drastically to have a chance.”
Rosen dropped back and launched a deep throw to Kirk, who was wide open down the middle of the field because free safety Adrian Colbert jumped up to try to take away Larry Fitzgerald on the play.
It was the perfect start for a team that scored just 37 points the first four games.
“We were just trying to get a spark in any way possible and just try to get our offense going,” Rosen said. “We haven’t been scoring as many points as we wanted to. I think we took a really good first step.”
Patrick Peterson recovered a fumble by Raheem Mostert and returned it 49 yards to the San Francisco 18, setting up Johnson’s 2-yard run that made it 14-6.
The Niners finally scored again on a fourth-and-1 pass from Beathard to Trent Taylor with 6:51 to play. But San Francisco couldn’t convert the 2-point try and fell to 1-12 over the past two seasons without Jimmy Garoppolo as starting quarterback.
The Cardinals sealed the game when Haason Reddick knocked the ball out of Beathard’s hand and Bynes returned it for a 23-yard score that gave Arizona its seventh straight win in the series.
Rosen got the win in his second start of the season despite completing just 10 of 25 passes for 170 yards. The one big play proved to be enough to beat the Niners.
“It’s frustrating,” cornerback Richard Sherman said. “Obviously the first play of the game on defense, we give up a big play. We just have to be better than that. It was a simple play, it was easy to get stopped and we just didn’t execute it like we needed to. So, that’s where you need to because after that they didn’t have much.”
Arizona defensive end Chandler Jones had a dominant day. He had a strip sack and fumble recovery against Beathard in the third quarter, and then batted away the 2-point conversion pass to Pierre Garcon with 6:51 to play to preserve a 14-12 lead.
Robbie Gould had made a franchise-record 33 straight field goals for the 49ers before missing wide right from 45 yards in the fourth quarter. The 49ers also botched an extra point in the first quarter when Gould didn’t even get an attempt.
Cardinals: OL Andre Smith left in the second half with a hamstring injury.
49ers: Breida left in the first quarter with an injured right ankle and didn’t return. Breida entered the week fourth in the league in rushing with 313 yards and had eight carries for 56 yards, along with his TD catch before the injury. … C Weston Richburg left in the second half with a knee injury.
Cardinals: Visit Minnesota next Sunday.
49ers: Visit Green Bay on Oct. 15.
Cowboys 16, Texans 19 OT
HOUSTON (AP) — When DeAndre Hopkins had a chance to make a play in overtime on Sunday night against the Dallas Cowboys, Houston’s star receiver was intent on redeeming himself after losing a rare fumble in the third quarter.
He did that with a spectacular 49-yard catch and run that got the Texans in scoring range, and Ka’imi Fairbairn kicked a 36-yard field goal to lift the Texans to a 19-16 win.
Hopkins, who finished with 151 yards receiving, grabbed a short pass from Deshaun Watson and twice spun away from would-be tacklers to stretch the play.
“I fumbled, so I knew I had to make a play,” Hopkins said. “There was a lot of guys downfield but I wasn’t trying to go down easy. A field goal would win the game and I knew that. I knew where I was, and I felt guys coming around me.”
Coach Bill O’Brien said Hopkins approached him after the fumble and simply said: ‘I’ll make up for that.’ Watson knew he would do that when he threw the ball his way.
“Playmakers make plays whenever we need him, and that was a situation where we needed him to make a play,” Watson said. “I threw it up for him to make a play, and he did what he had to do.”
The Cowboys got the ball first in OT but had to punt when Zach Cunningham stopped Ezekiel Elliott for no gain on third-and-1. Coach Jason Garrett defended his decision not to go for it.
“We just felt like at that point in the game, the way our defense was playing, the idea was to pin them down there,” he said.
Houston was just 1 of 5 in the red zone on Sunday, with Fairbairn making four field goals to help the Texans to the victory.
It is Houston’s first win over the Cowboys (2-3) since the team’s first game on Sept. 8, 2002, ending a three-game losing streak to Dallas. The Texans (2-3) did it in front of a franchise-record crowd of 72,008, which was peppered with plenty of Cowboys fans.
Houston defensive end Jadeveon Clowney didn’t realize the Texans hadn’t beaten the Cowboys in 16 years, but did understand the importance of the victory.
“This is a big win, not just for us but for the city of Houston,” he said. “Cowboys are America’s No. 1 team. For us to go out there and win at home was very big for us. We needed that win.”
Deshaun Watson threw for 375 yards with a touchdown and an interception for the Texans, who won in overtime for the second straight week.
Dak Prescott had 208 yards passing and a touchdown but threw two interceptions for the Cowboys. Elliott, who entered the game as the NFL’s leading rusher, was limited to 54 yards rushing.
“We just haven’t gotten it going on offense,” Prescott said. “I don’t know if there’s one thing you can pinpoint, but we’ve got to figure it out.”
The Texans were driving late in the fourth quarter when Xavier Woods intercepted Watson, who threw under heavy pressure, with 10 seconds left and returned it 15 yards to give Dallas the ball at its 47. Kareem Jackson nearly intercepted Prescott on the next play before his Hail Mary on the last play of regulation was knocked down in the end zone by receiver DeAndre Hopkins, who came in to play defense.
A 27-yard pass interference call by Byron Jones on a ball intended for Hopkins got Houston to the 1-yard line in the third quarter. But two failed running plays followed by an incomplete pass forced another field goal which gave the Texans a 16-13 lead with about 8 1/2 minutes remaining.
The Cowboys tied it up on a 48-yard field goal with less than six minutes left. That drive was highlighted by a 44-yard pass by Prescott to Tavon Austin that he made after escaping sacks by J.J. Watt, Brandon Dunn and Zach Cunningham.
Prescott’s second interception came when Johnathan Joseph broke up a pass and rookie Justin Reid caught it just before it hit the turf in the third quarter. The Texans drove to the 3-yard line on the ensuing possession before the drive stalled and Fairbairn kicked a 21-yard field goal to tie it at 13-13.
Hopkins fumbled after a catch early in the third quarter and it was recovered by Jourdan Lewis and returned to the Houston 16. The Cowboys regained the lead when Prescott found Allen Hurns in the back of the end zone on a 3-yard touchdown pass that made it 13-10.
The Texans drove to the 2-yard line later in the second but Watson’s pass on third down fell incomplete and they settled for a 20-yard field goal to push the lead to 10-6.
Houston RB Lamar Miller, who dealt with a chest injury this week, was active but did not play. … Texans CB Kayvon Webster left the game in the first quarter with a quadriceps injury and didn’t return.
The Texans took their first lead when rookie Keke Coutee, who made his debut last week, scored on a 1-yard run early in the second quarter. Coutee celebrated his first career touchdown with a dance called the Shiggy Challenge from a Drake song called “In My Feelings” which includes the line: “Kiki do you love me?”
He had previously said he didn’t like that song because he was tired of everyone singing it to him but seems to be past that now.
“I just gave the people what they wanted to see,” he said with a laugh.
Cowboys: Host the Jacksonville Jaguars next Sunday.
Texans: Host the Buffalo Bills next Sunday.
Redskins 19, Saints 43
NEW ORLEANS (AP) — Drew Brees’ 62-yard touchdown pass to rookie Tre’Quan Smith made him the NFL’s all-time leader in yards passing and sent the New Orleans Saints well on their way to a lopsided 43-19 victory over the mistake-prone Washington Redskins on Monday night.
Brees entered the game needing 201 yards to eclipse Peyton Manning’s previous mark of 71,940 yards. He had 250 yards and two touchdowns by halftime and finished 26 of 29 for 363 yards and three touchdowns. The 39-year-old quarterback, who looks prolific as ever, has yet to throw an interception this season. He did, however, make his eighth career reception on his own deflected pass, and pushed across the line of scrimmage to add an extra yard to his career total.
The Saints’ Smith, a third-round draft choice last spring, caught two touchdown passes from the 18th-year pro. Brees also hit Smith for a 35-yard score down the right sideline early in the third quarter.
Any hope Washington had of coming back was all but snuffed out when Justin Hardee, a special teams regular who was in the game because of Marshon Lattimore’s concussion symptoms, snagged Alex Smith’s underthrown pass at the Saints’ 19-yard line and returned his first career interception to the Washington 4.
That set up change-of-pace QB Taysom Hill’s 1-yard touchdown run that put the Saints (4-1) up 40-13.
Smith completed 23 of 39 passes for 275 yards for the Redskins (2-2). He ran for a short touchdown late in the first half that pulled Washington within 26-13.
The Redskins came in allowing fewer than 190 yards passing per game and spoke of doing what they could to prevent Brees from making history. Instead, they helped Brees pile up first-half yards with third-down penalties that extended two touchdown drives.
Josh Norman’s defensive holding penalty during Brees’ incomplete pass on third-and-4 from the New Orleans 42 helped the Saints on their first scoring drive, capped by Mark Ingram’s short touchdown run.
In the second quarter, Montae Nicholson’s unnecessary roughness penalty for leveling Ingram on Ryan Kerrigan’s third-down sack of Brees extended a drive that ended with Brees’ short TD pass to tight end Josh Hill.
Ingram, playing in his first game this season after serving a four-game suspension, scored two touchdowns, the second on a 1-yard run that made it 20-6 late in the second quarter.
After the Saints forced a three-and-out, Brees got the ball back needing just 35 yards to break the record. On the first play of the drive, Brees launched a pass toward the right sideline to the speedy Smith, who was wide open and easily sprinted away from Nicholson’s tackle attempt en route to the end zone.
Brees’ teammates ran toward their quarterback as he jogged behind the play, and a group of them formed a jumping, celebrating mass of black and gold next to the Saints’ fleur-de-lis emblem on the 50-yard line.
Brees then removed his helmet, saluted fans and exchanged hugs on the sideline with his wife, Brittany, their four kids and Saints coach Sean Payton. The ball was handed over to Pro Football Hall of Fame officials.
With the game well in hand after the two-minute warning, Payton subbed Brees out of the game. As Teddy Bridgwater ran onto the field and Brees trotted to the sideline, Brees got one last ovation before fans began chanting: “Who dat say dey gonna beat dem Saints.”
Redskins: Chris Thompson took a heavy hit from Saints linebacker Craig Robertson and received treatment on the field before getting up and walking to the sideline holding his helmet.
Saints: In addition to Lattimore, reserve defensive lineman Taylor Stallworth limped off the field, favoring his right leg.
Redskins: Host Carolina on Sunday.
Saints: Enter their bye week before returning to action at Baltimore on Oct. 21.