Demarus Dye| BKD TV Insiders
Here is a recap of Week 12 of the 2018 NFL Season with a Tuesday Morning QB & thanks again to AP Sports/ Pro 32 for photos & articles.
Bye: Chiefs, Rams
Bears 23, Lions 16
DETROIT (AP) — Chase Daniel outplayed Matthew Stafford, proving an NFL journeyman can beat one of the highest-paid players in the league.
Daniel threw a career-high two touchdowns to keep the Chicago Bears rolling with a 23-16 win over the Detroit Lions on Thursday, filling in very well for injured quarterback Mitchell Trubisky.
“You don’t know when these opportunities will come,” the 32-year-old Daniel said after making the third start of his career and first in nearly four years. “You just have to make the most of them.”
Daniel finished 27 of 37 for 230 yards, setting career highs in each category. He threw a go-ahead, 10-yard touchdown pass to Taquan Mizzell in the second quarter and a 14-yard pass to Tarik Cohen in the fourth to give Chicago the lead again at 16-13.
It was quite a performance for Daniel, a player who has been used sparingly since the former Missouri star entered the league in 2010. He barely played for New Orleans, Kansas City, Philadelphia and Chicago, but gained respect from coaches and players for his preparation.
“Everyone in this locker room knew what he was going to do, and he didn’t let us down,” Mizzell said. “People forget how long he’s been in the NFL and how much talent he has. They talk about the number of games he’s started, but the people that practice with him every day knew that he was going to give us a chance to win this game.”
And unlike Stafford, Daniel didn’t make any costly mistakes.
Stafford was 28 of 38 for 236 yards with two interceptions late in the fourth, dooming Detroit’s chances to win. The Lions drafted Stafford No. 1 overall in 2009 and gave him a $135 million, five-year extension last year.
The NFC North-leading Bears (8-3) sealed their fifth straight victory with Kyle Fuller’s interception in the end zone with 1:07 left.
Chicago broke a 16-16 tie on Eddie Jackson’s 41-yard pick-6 with six minutes remaining. The safety stepped in front of a pass in the flat intended for tight end Michael Roberts, taking advantage of the fact that Stafford didn’t look at another target as he dropped back.
“Got to see (Jackson) a little better than I did,” Stafford said.
Jackson, a 2017 fourth-round pick, has turned two of his four interceptions into scores this season and has five total touchdowns in his career.
“He’s had an unbelievable season so far, one that I don’t know that I’ve seen,” Chicago coach Matt Nagy said.
Jackson said simply picking off passes is not enough for his team, which has scored five times off interceptions this season.
“We are always thinking about putting points on the board,” he said. “It is about attacking.”
The Lions drove to the Bears 11 on their last possession, but couldn’t score because Stafford’s pass to Roberts was picked off by Fuller.
Detroit (4-7) has lost four of five, plummeting to last place in the division.
“We’re not playing good football,” running back LeGarrette Blount said.
The Lions did start relatively well, becoming the first team to lead Chicago in a month when Blount ran for his first of two touchdowns early in the second quarter. Blount had a season-high 88 yards rushing.
The Bears, though, were able to come back and go ahead thanks to a mistake-free quarterback and their defense that leads the NFL with 29 takeaways, including 20 interceptions.
“Our defense stepped up on the last two drives with takeaways and that’s why they’re the best in the league,” Daniel said.
The Bears came up with some creative ways to celebrate two touchdowns.
Cohen went down to his side just beyond the end zone, putting his hands under his head as if he was taking a nap like many Americans do on Thanksgiving. After Fuller’s interception, Prince Amukamara held the football as if it was a microphone and his teammates played the role of backup dancers and fans in a nod to Motown .
“It’s a fun time,” Nagy said. “That’s who we are right now. Guys are wanting to outdance each other.”
Bears: RB Benny Cunningham (ankle) left the game in the first half. Amukamara was evaluated on the sideline by the team’s medical staff in the second half and returned.
Trubisky was inactive after being listed as doubtful with a shoulder injury. Nagy said it is a short-term injury, but he wouldn’t say when the No. 2 pick overall from the 2017 draft will return.
“It’s a day-to-day thing with him,” Nagy said.
Lions: Rookie RB Kerryon Johnson (knee) and WR Marvin Jones (knee) were inactive with injuries. C Graham Glasgow left the game briefly with an injury in the fourth quarter.
Bears: Visit New York Giants (3-7) on Dec. 2, giving Chicago a long break.
Lions: Host Los Angeles Rams (10-1) on Dec. 2.
Redskins 23, Cowboys 31
ARLINGTON, Texas (AP) — Ezekiel Elliott made the $21 donation after his touchdown. Amari Cooper took the freebie following the first of his two scores.
The bonus for the Dallas Cowboys: They’re all the way back in the NFC East race.
Cooper celebrated his first touchdown with a mock free throw before a 90-yard score that sent him to a Dallas Thanksgiving- record 180 yards receiving, and the Cowboys pulled even with Washington atop the division with a 31-23 win over the Redskins on Thursday.
Elliott ran for 121 yards with his TD and cash celebration as the Cowboys (6-5) won their third straight game since their first home loss, to Tennessee in the Dallas debut of Cooper. Dallas’ eighth win in nine Thanksgiving games against Washington, and second in three years, earned a season split.
“Everyone jumped off the bandwagon, of course, at 3-5,” quarterback Dak Prescott said. “You expect that. I can tell you who didn’t doubt ourselves. As long as we locked arms, we stayed tight, we knew we could do this and we can do more. That’s the only thing that matters to us.”
The Redskins (6-5) lost for the third time in four games in Colt McCoy’s first start in four years coming off Alex Smith’s season-ending leg injury.
The former Texas Longhorns star threw three interceptions to offset two touchdown passes. McCoy won his two previous starts at the home of the Cowboys, one for the 2009 Big 12 championship and the other his most recent NFL victory with the Redskins in 2014.
“I think I’m encouraged, on a short week like that,” said McCoy, who was 24 of 38 for 268 yards. “Losing overshadows everything. But I’ll go back and watch it and try to clean up some of my mistakes that are going to help our team win.”
Cooper had 105 yards after the catch on his two touchdowns.
First, Cooper ran away from Quinton Dunbar after the Washington cornerback slipped on a short pass, turning it into a 40-yard TD for a 17-13 lead. Cooper celebrated by mimicking a free throw , shooting the football through the goal post.
On the 90-yarder, Cooper made the catch just outside the Dallas 30, spun out of the arms of Fabian Moreau and won the race to the pylon against former Alabama teammate Ha Ha Clinton-Dix, who tried to shove him out of bounds around the 5.
The longest catch of Cooper’s career and longest completion in Prescott’s three seasons came exactly a month after the Cowboys gave Oakland their first-round pick in the upcoming draft for a new No. 1 receiver.
“I’ve been putting in extra time with my coaches, with Dak,” Cooper said. “For some reason, since I’ve been here, the chemistry with Dak has phenomenal.”
McCoy looked as if he hadn’t started a game in a long time early, throwing into double coverage on his first play and fumbling while trying to scramble on his third, with the Redskins recovering and punting.
But McCoy settled in with a couple of third-down passes to Jordan Reed to keep drives going, then hit Vernon Davis in stride on a 53-yard touchdown — the longest Washington completion of the season — for a 7-7 tie.
The Cowboys were having all the fun before the Redskins pulled even, with Elliott scoring on a 16-yard run and dropping $21 into a giant Salvation Army red kettle behind the end zone. The cash was handed to him by a team photographer.
As a rookie in 2016, Elliott jumped into the kettle on the same part of the field after a touchdown in a 31-26 win over the Redskins. That season’s NFL rushing champion, who wears No. 21, was fined for the stunt and later donated $21,000 to the Salvation Army.
After scoring on a scrambling 5-yard run for the third Dallas touchdown in less than eight minutes and a 31-13 lead, Prescott let Elliott help him into another kettle on the other end of the field, drawing the same unsportsmanlike conduct penalty Elliott did two years ago.
Elliott missed the Thanksgiving game last year on his six-game suspension over domestic violence allegations.
“I didn’t have any plans to do that. Zeke did,” said Prescott, who was 22 of 31 for a season-high 289 yards in his third straight game without an interception or a lost fumble. “He showed his strength. Once he had me in the air, I said I’ve got to own it now and just figured I’d jump in there before I got hurt.”
Cowboys rookie receiver Michael Gallup had two catches for 19 yards less than a week after his brother died by suicide. The team gave him the game ball. He stayed with his family after last weekend’s game in Atlanta, and will attend the funeral Friday. Gallup didn’t talk to reporters after the game.
“Just so proud of the way he’s handled this,” Prescott said. “You know he’s playing for his brother, he’s living for his brother and that’s what’s most important.”
Washington receiver Trey Quinn, the final pick of this year’s draft at the home of the Cowboys and a former player at nearby SMU, had a 30-yard punt return to the Dallas 25 to set up his own 10-yard touchdown catch for Washington’s only lead at 13-10 in the third quarter.
Redskins running back Adrian Peterson left briefly in the first quarter with a shoulder injury but returned. Still, he wasn’t nearly as effective as in Washington’s 20-17 win in the first meeting. The four-time All-Pro finished with 35 yards on 12 carries after going for 99 yards at home.
After the game, Peterson wouldn’t discuss his comments in a recent report that he still uses a belt and a switch to discipline his son. In 2014, he faced felony charges of child abuse in his home state of Texas before pleading no contest to a misdemeanor in a settlement.
Redskins: First of two meetings in the final five games against the defending champion Eagles, at Philadelphia on Monday, Dec. 3.
Cowboys: Face New Orleans in the second of three straight home games next Thursday.
Falcons 17, Saints 31
NEW ORLEANS (AP) — Drew Brees made Atlanta pay for losing track of his inexperienced receivers, and New Orleans’ defense halted several promising Falcons drives with forced fumbles they could not afford.
Tommylee Lewis and Austin Carr each caught his second career touchdown pass, rookie tight end Dan Arnold and rookie receiver Keith Kirkwood each grabbed their first, and the Saints won their 10th straight game with a 31-17 victory Thursday night that eliminated Atlanta from contention in the NFC South.
All four players entered the NFL as undrafted free agents within the past three years.
“I love that stat,” Brees said. “That’s one of my favorite ones.”
They also had combined for zero touchdowns this season before Carr caught the first of his career last Sunday.
“It says a lot about taking advantage of the opportunity,” Brees said. “It’s fun to watch them grow and gain confidence. We’re building chemistry, which typically takes time, right? But they’ve been thrust into this role.”
Meanwhile, the Falcons (4-7) lost three fumbles inside the Saints 20 — tough for any team to overcome against streaking New Orleans (10-1) this season.
Atlanta quarterback Matt Ryan was stripped by safety Marcus Williams on a third-and-2 from the Saints 3 and Williams recovered to end Atlanta’s opening drive. Julio Jones was stripped by linebacker Alex Anzalone after a catch on the New Orleans 17, and safety Vonn Bell recovered in the final minute of the second quarter to preserve a 17-3 lead going into halftime.
New Orleans’ defense, which had a season-high six sacks, continued to come up with big plays in the second half. Anzalone broke up a fourth-down pass in the third quarter and linebacker A.J. Klein intercepted a pass tipped by defensive tackle Tyeler Davison in the fourth.
“I do love the way that we played today,” said defensive end Cameron Jordan, who had two sacks. “I do love the four turnovers. I do love the sacks. I do love the pressures. I do love the quarterback hits. For all terms and purposes, we had our Thanksgiving.”
Klein’s interception gave the Saints possession on the Atlanta 22, setting up Kirkwood’s diving 4-yard TD catch.
With about four minutes left, cornerback Marshon Lattimore stripped Calvin Ridley on the Saints 1 after a 29-yard completion that looked as though it would end in a touchdown. Defensive back Eli Apple recovered that one.
“When you have one turnover (in the red zone), it feels like a lot,” Falcons coach Dan Quinn said. “We had three down there and that was the real story of the game.”
Ryan was under pressure all night from a Saints defense that was bolstered by the return of first-round draft choice Marcus Davenport from a toe injury that sidelined him for three games. Marcus Williams, P.J. Williams, Sheldon Rankins and Demario Davis each had a sack.
Ryan finished 35 of 47 for 377 yards, two touchdowns and one interception. But little came easy. His first TD pass, to Ridley, came on fourth down from the 2 late in the third quarter.
Atlanta rushed for just 26 yards. New Orleans finished with 150, led by Alvin Kamara’s 89 and Mark Ingram’s 52.
Statistically, Brees did not have one of his more impressive games, completing 15 of 22 passes for 171 yards with his second interception of the season. The pick was snagged by Damontae Kazee, his NFL-leading sixth this year.
Brees’ ability to play to the strengths of unheralded receivers allowed the Saints to cash in on scoring opportunities. A week earlier, he found rookie Tre’Quan Smith 10 times for 157 yards and a TD, but Smith was ruled out against Atlanta with a foot injury. Another receiver, Ted Ginn Jr., has been out with a knee injury since Week 5.
Lewis, a third-year pro, was in his first game back after nine weeks on injured reserve and had not caught a pass all season before getting wide open for his 28-yard grab that made it 7-0. Carr is a second-year pro who played in only one game without a catch as a rookie. He, too, was wide open after Falcons defenders bit on a fake to Ingram. Kirkwood made his NFL debut three games ago, when Arnold had his first career catch.
“Obviously, Drew is someone who is very confident in the preparation, confident in players around him. There’s a lot that goes into that,” Saints coach Sean Payton said. “I’m excited for those guys that got opportunities.”
The Falcons’ dimming playoff hopes hang on catching up in the wild-card race, and they trail Minnesota (5-4-1) by two games for the last spot.
“It’s rough right now for us. You don’t want guys to quit,” Jones said. “This is the time you get to see what guys are really like.”
Falcons linebacker Kemal Ishmael was helped off the field in the third quarter after a punt.
Falcons host Baltimore Dec. 2.
Saints visit Dallas on Thursday night.
Patriots 27, Jets 13
EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. (AP) — Tom Brady set yet another NFL record. Ho-hum. The New England Patriots quarterback was more excited about earning another victory.
Brady threw two touchdown passes and became the career leader in total yards passing in regular-season and playoff games, leading the Patriots past the New York Jets 27-13 on Sunday.
“Just wins,” Brady said. “That’s what we’re here for. I’m trying to be a part of as many of these as I can.”
Well, the five-time Super Bowl champion certainly has lots of those.
The latest clinched the Patriots (8-3) their 18th straight season with a .500 record or better. That ranks second in NFL history to only Dallas, which had 21 in a row from 1965-85.
Brady had just one TD throw in his previous three games, but connected with Rob Gronkowski and Julian Edelman against the AFC East-rival Jets (3-8). The Patriots quarterback went 20 of 31 for 283 yards, giving him 79,416 for his career.
He also reached 3,000 yards passing for the 16th season, tying Peyton Manning for second in NFL history behind Brett Favre’s 18.
That’s all after missing Friday’s practice with an illness after being limited during the week with a sore knee.
“I’d prefer to be healthy and practice all the time,” Brady said. “That just wasn’t the case.”
He was plenty good enough.
Rookie Sony Michel ran for a season-best 133 yards and a TD , and the Patriots had 215 yards rushing — responding well to coach Bill Belichick’s challenge to his offense.
“We talked about being consistent week in and week out,” Michel said, “playing Patriots football, being physical and run the ball and throw the ball and control the line of scrimmage.”
Coming off a 34-10 loss to Tennessee two weeks ago, the Patriots avoided their second two-game losing streak of the season — something the franchise hasn’t experienced since 2015. New England, which improved to 3-3 on the road, has won five straight in the series against New York and eight of the past nine.
With Jets rookie Sam Darnold out with a foot strain, 39-year-old backup Josh McCown got his second straight start — making this game the NFL’s second-oldest QB combo at 80 years, 258 days with 41-year-old Brady going for New England. Only Carolina’s Vinny Testaverde (44) and Green Bay’s Favre (38) in 2007 are an older combination at 82 years, 44 days old.
Brady got the better of McCown in this one, though, even though it took until late in the second half for the Patriots to pull away.
“We were not great in the red area, but we made enough plays,” Brady said. “In every area, I think we can do a better job. We’re certainly not where we want to be and we’ll keep building for it. Hopefully, everyone can stay healthy.”
Brady connected with Edelman for a 21-yard touchdown that put the Patriots ahead 20-13 with 1:52 left in the third quarter. The drive opened with a 27-yard reception by Chris Hogan, followed by a 27-yard run by James White. Brady found a wide-open Edelman, who ran through a tackle attempt by Jamal Adams and got into the end zone.
Michel added a 1-yard touchdown run with 8:54 left, one play after a video review reversed his TD run; his right knee was down before he reached the goal line. The score put the Patriots up 27-13 and sent many Jets fans streaming toward the exits.
McCown was 26 of 45 for 276 yards and a touchdown to Jermaine Kearse with one interception for the Jets, who have lost five straight for the first time since the 2014 season.
“It (stinks),” McCown said. “It’s obviously not ideal. I think individually, it’s a test — a test of who you are and what you’re about and your ability to get back up come back to work, work hard and be a professional. Those things are tested in these times.”
JETS UP EARLY
The Jets took a 7-0 lead in the opening quarter on McCown’s 16-yard pass to Kearse, who made a nice move on defensive back Jonathan Jones before zipping into the end zone. The drive was helped by 19-yard catches by Chris Herndon and Isaiah Crowell, and a roughing-the-passer call on Deatrich Wise Jr. on a third-down play.
But the Patriots came right back to tie it on Brady’s 34-yard pass to Gronkowski.
White was called for offensive pass interference on third-and-2 from the Jets 24, and coach Todd Bowles took the penalty rather than the down. So, on third-and-12, Brady fired a strike to Gronkowski, who made the grab and looked plenty healthy after missing the past two games with back and ankle issues.
MYERS IS MONEY
New York’s Jason Myers tied it at 10 with 3 seconds remaining in the opening half, making a 55-yarder — and setting an NFL record with five field goals of 55 yards or longer in one season. He also tied the team’s home record for longest field goal for the fourth time this season.
NOT SO CLOSE
The previous five games between the teams at MetLife Stadium had all been decided by seven points or less — including a 26-20 overtime win by the Jets in Bowles’ first season.
Gronkowski finished with three catches for 56 yards and the score , his first since Week 1 against Houston.
“When he’s out there, it’s great for our offense,” Brady said. “I don’t want to minimize anything he does.”
McCown hit his right thumb on a helmet during the first half, causing a cut. He wouldn’t discuss the injury after the game, but had a heavy wrap around his hand when he left the locker room.
Television cameras caught Patriots wide receiver Cordarelle Patterson grabbing at Jets defensive end Henry Anderson’s privates at the end of a play. After the game, Patterson told reporters he took exception to Anderson’s body being too close to his face.
Patriots: home vs. Minnesota next Sunday.
Jets: at Tennessee next Sunday.
Browns 35, Bengals 20
CINCINNATI (AP) — As the touchdown passes quickly piled up, Baker Mayfield felt like he was back at Oklahoma leading his team to another freewheeling win.
His new team — the Cleveland Browns — are starting to feel a bit like it’s the good old days, too.
Mayfield set a Browns rookie record with four touchdown passes in another growing-up-fast performance, and Cleveland ended one of the NFL’s longest streaks of road futility on Sunday with a 35-20 victory over the hapless Cincinnati Bengals, who lost quarterback Andy Dalton to a thumb injury.
Cleveland (4-6-1) won on the road for the first time since 2015, emphatically snapping a streak of 25 straight road losses that was one shy of the Lions’ NFL record. The Browns also ended a run of seven straight losses to their intrastate rival after trading trash talk on the field beforehand.
“We’re tired of being disrespected,” safety Jabrill Peppers said. “Before the game, they said, ‘Why are you talking? You play for the Browns.’ What does that even mean?”
Just as unabashed Browns safety Damarious Randall had predicted, it wasn’t even close.
The Browns surged ahead 28-0 as former head coach Hue Jackson watched helplessly from the opposite sideline. Jackson couldn’t win with the Browns — only three victories in two-plus seasons. Nor could he beat them as a special defensive assistant with the Bengals (5-6), who lost for the fifth time in six games.
The Browns were bothered by the sight of their former coach on the other sideline plotting against them.
“Somebody who was in our locker room is asking us to play for him, and then he goes to a different team,” said Mayfield, who didn’t say much to Jackson when they met on the field after the game.
By that point, words weren’t really necessary.
Randall had predicted during the week that if Bengals receiver A.J. Green didn’t play, the Browns would dominate. Green was out again with a toe injury, and Randall had a hand in making his prediction hold up.
He picked off Dalton in the second quarter, ran out of bounds and handed the ball to Jackson , who was fired last month by the Browns. Jackson responded by tapping him on the helmet.
“He just said thank you for the ball,” Randall said.
Mayfield was at the center of it all, completing 14 of 18 passes as the Browns surged ahead by 21 points. He was coming off his best game, a three-TD performance during a 28-16 win over Atlanta that sent Cleveland into its bye week.
Mayfield finished 19 of 26 for 258 yards as the Browns essentially ran out the clock in the second half, when he threw only four passes. The first half reminded him of his high-scoring games at Oklahoma.
“A little bit, yeah,” he said. “Everything seemed to be working. But that’s the way we want it here in Cleveland.”
Dalton hurt the thumb on his passing hand while trying to recover a fumble in the third quarter and didn’t return. He was still being evaluated after the game. The Browns turned the fumble recovery into Mayfield’s fourth TD pass for a 35-7 lead. Dalton was 10 of 17 for 100 yards with a touchdown and an interception.
From the opening drive, it was all Cleveland. The Browns’ 28 first-half points were their most since 1991, when they scored 31 against the Colts.
“It hurts,” Bengals receiver Tyler Boyd said. “It hurts a lot.”
Cleveland’s last road win was 33-30 in overtime at Baltimore on Oct. 11, 2015. The Browns have won consecutive games for the first time since 2014. They’ve won back-to-back games by double digits for the first time since 2013.
Mayfield has thrown for multiple touchdowns in each of his last five starts, the first Browns rookie to accomplish the feat. He’s the first Browns quarterback to throw for at least three TDs in consecutive games since Derek Anderson in 2007. In eight starts, he has thrown 17 TD passes, the most by a Browns rookie.
CAN’T TOUCH THIS
In his last two games, Mayfield hasn’t been sacked while throwing seven TD passes without an interception.
The Browns scored a touchdown on their opening drive for the first time in 14 games. It was the third straight game the Bengals allowed an opening touchdown.
CHUBB KEEPS ROLLING
Cleveland running back Nick Chubb had another big day, running 1 yard for a touchdown and catching a 14-yard TD pass over Brandon Wilson. He is the fourth rookie in NFL history to have a rushing and a receiving TD in consecutive games.
Browns: Cleveland came out of its bye week as healthy as it’s been all season.
Bengals: CB Dre Kirkpatrick also was inactive with shoulder injury. LT Cordy Glenn was out with a back injury, and fill-in Jake Fisher hurt his back late in the first half. CB Tony McRae suffered a concussion in the third quarter and gave two thumbs-up as he was wheeled off the field.
The Browns play at Houston on Sunday.
The Bengals host the Broncos on Sunday.
Raiders 17, Ravens 34
BALTIMORE (AP) — Lamar Jackson proved in the first half that he was capable of throwing the football as well as running with it.
After that, the Baltimore Ravens rookie quarterback got back to what he does best — much to the delight of his offensive line.
Jackson ran all over the Oakland Raiders, finishing with 71 yards rushing and a touchdown to carry the Ravens past the Oakland Raiders 34-17 on Sunday.
Terrell Suggs returned a fumble 43 yards for a score and Cyrus Jones took a punt 70 yards for a touchdown to help Baltimore (6-5) win a second straight game for the first time since September.
Gus Edwards rushed for 118 yards as part of an effective ground game that enabled Jackson to pass just enough to keep the Raiders off guard — and off the field. Baltimore expanded a three-point halftime lead to 27-17 with two run-heavy touchdown drives that consumed a total of nearly 16 minutes.
“To have those long drives and have the running game going the way it went was probably the key to the game,” coach John Harbaugh said. “It was exactly what we talked about at halftime. We felt like we needed to do that. We felt like we could do it. The offensive line was very much in favor of doing that.”
With starter Joe Flacco out for a second straight game with an injured right hip, Jackson cut down on his rushing attempts, threw more often and got the same result — a victory.
After carrying 27 times for 117 yards last week in his NFL starting debut, Jackson ran 11 times against Oakland (nine times in the second half) and threw only seven passes after halftime, finishing 14 for 25 for 178 yards with a touchdown and two interceptions.
“Threw two interceptions,” Jackson lamented. “One more than last week, so I was a little bit ticked off.”
Known primarily for his ability to run, Jackson proved to be a dual threat.
“Just because you can run with the ball, doesn’t mean you can’t throw,” Harbaugh said.
The question now is, if Flacco is healthy next week, who starts against Atlanta?
“I’m not going to get into that for a lot of reasons,” Harbaugh said. “If the decision has been made or not, it is not important for anybody to know but us.”
Suggs clinched it with 5:55 left, lumbering down the right sideline after Oakland’s Derek Carr was sacked by Matthew Judon and lost the ball on a fourth-down play.
“It seemed like it took me forever to get there,” said the 36-year-old Suggs, who gripped the ball most of the way with his right hand.
Carr completed 16 of 34 passes for 194 yards and a touchdown but was sacked three times.
The Raiders (2-9) came in with the league’s 31st-ranked running defense, and the Ravens exploited that weakness for 242 yards rushing on 43 attempts.
“They didn’t make it real complicated,” Oakland coach Jon Gruden said. “You have to stop the inside run or you have no chance to stop everything else.”
Baltimore opened the third quarter with a 13-play drive that consumed nearly seven minutes and featured 12 running plays, including a 5-yard touchdown by Jackson that made it 20-10.
Carr matched that touchdown by using the opposite approach, passing to Seth Roberts for 44 yards to set up a 16-yard scoring toss to tight end Jared Cook.
Jackson then orchestrated a 17-play march that covered 71 yards and lasted 8 minutes, 53 seconds. On third-and-goal from the 8, Jackson zipped a TD pass to former Oakland star Michael Crabtree.
“They took over the game,” Gruden said. “Credit to them.”
The Ravens’ only touchdown before halftime came on Jones’ second-quarter punt return.
Jones tiptoed down the right sideline and went the distance, getting key blocks from Chris Moore and Judon. It was the first career touchdown for Jones, who was released by New England in October.
Suggs’ fumble recovery ended a run of 18 straight quarters without a takeaway for Baltimore, a stretch that began against New Orleans on Oct. 21. The Ravens own a minus-6 turnover differential.
Raiders: Backup DE Jacquies Smith left with an Achilles injury and did not return. … DT Maurice Hurst left in the third quarter with an undisclosed injury.
Ravens: SS Tony Jefferson twisted his left ankle in the second quarter, returned briefly and left for good. … RB Alex Collins (foot) was inactive after starting every game this season. … OL Alex Lewis and G Marshal Yanda both underwent concussion protocol in the second half and were cleared.
Raiders: Host the Kansas City Chiefs, the first of two meetings between these longtime rivals over the final five weeks.
Ravens: Travel to Atlanta for a matchup against the Falcons (4-7), who have lost three straight.
Jaguars 21, Bills 24
ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. (AP) — Once Leonard Fournette and the Jacksonville Jaguars lost their cool, Josh Allen and the Buffalo Bills took over.
Allen scored the go-ahead touchdown on a 14-yard run in the fourth quarter, and Buffalo beat Jacksonville 24-21 on Sunday in a game marred by a fight that led to the ejections of Fournette and Bills defensive end Shaq Lawson.
Fournette put the loss on himself.
“I take full responsibility for that,” he said. “We lost the game. We should’ve won this game hands down.”
They might have with the way Fournette was running. He scored twice and had 95 yards rushing before he was thrown out in the third quarter.
“I have to be a professional. I mean, you can’t have that,” he said.
Allen scored on the first snap of the fourth and also threw a 75-yard touchdown pass to Robert Foster in the opening quarter in his return to the lineup after missing four games with a sprained right throwing elbow. Buffalo (4-7) came off its bye week to win consecutive games for the first time this season.
The Jaguars (3-8) dropped their seventh consecutive game in their longest losing streak since a nine-game slide in 2016, which led directly to Gus Bradley being replaced by current coach Doug Marrone.
The bad blood between two teams who met in last season’s AFC wild-card game boiled over with 2:57 left in the third quarter.
Jaguars receiver Donte Moncrief had what was initially ruled a 30-yard TD reception at the left pylon. He was on the ground battling for control of the ball with Levi Wallace when a Jaguars player struck Bills safety Micah Hyde from behind.
Players then began shoving each other, with Lawson going after Jaguars running back Carlos Hyde. That’s when Fournette ran across the field to target Lawson.
They exchanged punches in the left corner of the end zone on the Bills side of the field before eventually being separated.
“I don’t know, maybe you call it frustration on their part, I’m not sure,” Micah Hyde said, not realizing Fournette left his own sideline to get involved.
“At that time, it was 14-14. No reason for anything on their part especially someone running on to the field when they were on the bench,” he said.
Even Bills coach Sean McDermott had blood smeared on his hooded sweatshirt.
“You know what, part of it’s mine, and part of it’s a little bit from the scrum right there. We’ll take it,” McDermott said. “I was glad that the players supported one another.”
The game went south for Jacksonville after that.
A review negated the touchdown, ruling Moncrief was down at the 1. Carlos Hyde lost a yard on first-and-goal, and then tight end James O’Shaughnessy was flagged for a false start.
Dede Westbrook had a touchdown catch nullified by an offensive holding penalty on fellow receiver Keelan Cole. After Kyle Williams sacked Blake Bortles for an 8-yard loss, Lambo missed a 42-yard attempt wide left.
Buffalo took over and needed three plays — and two personal fouls against Jacksonville — to put together a 68-yard drive that ended with Allen’s run.
“I won’t say an empty feeling. I don’t know how to describe it,” Jaguars cornerback Jalen Ramsey said. “It (stinks) losing over and over and over again.”
Lack of discipline, injuries and turnovers have combined to scuttle the Jaguars, who were coming off a 20-16 loss to Pittsburgh in which they squandered a 16-0 third-quarter lead.
“Wins, losses, penalties, things like that, they all reflect on me,” Marrone said. “So I guess if you want me to say I have to do a better job, then I do. I just wish I could stop it before it starts.”
As Fournette and Lawson were escorted off their respective sidelines, they met once again just before entering the tunnel. Lawson had to be held back by a Bills official while Fournette was asked to wait — he was then struck in the left shoulder by a fan, who had reached out from the stands. Fournette also said he was doused with beer.
Jaguars: Bortles finished 12 of 23 for 127 yards, including a 13-yard touchdown to Westbrook with 1:20 remaining. He also threw two interceptions, the second one setting up Stephen Hauschka’s 22-yard field goal that put Buffalo up 24-14 with 3:06 left.
Bills: Allen finished 8 of 19 for 160 yards and also had a team-high 99 yards rushing. His touchdown pass to Foster was the longest completion for the Bills since Tyrod Taylor hit Marquise Goodwin for an 84-yard TD in Buffalo’s 2016 home-opening loss to the New York Jets.
Ramsey raised eyebrows in August when he referred to Allen as “trash” in an interview with GQ magazine . Ramsey was beaten by Allen on a 32-yard reception by Kelvin Benjamin on Buffalo’s first touchdown drive. Ramsey was also penalized for a facemask while tackling Benjamin.
Moments after he had an interception negated by an illegal contact penalty, Ramsey was spotted yelling “You trash, you trash!” toward the Bills sideline. The exchange took place with three seconds left in the first half.
Jaguars: Host Colts next Sunday, three weeks after a 29-26 loss at Indianapolis.
Bills: Close with four of five against AFC East rivals starting with a visit to Miami next weekend.
Seahawks 30, Panthers 27
CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) — Tyler Lockett knew if Russell Wilson bought him a few more seconds, he could spring himself for a big play.
Wilson did just that, sidestepping a few pass rushers in the pocket and enabling Lockett to slip behind cornerback Captain Munnerlyn and haul in a 43-yard completion at the Carolina 10. Wilson then took a knee twice and spiked the ball once to set up Sebastian Janikowski’s 31-yard field goal as time expired, allowing the Seattle Seahawks to complete a 30-27 come-from-behind win over the Panthers on Sunday.
“When Russell keeps it alive, we understand how hard it is for defenders to try to guard somebody more than five seconds,” Lockett said. “If it is longer than four or five seconds, it puts us in a better position to get open.”
Wilson threw for 339 yards and two touchdowns, putting the Seahawks (6-5) firmly in contention for an NFC wild card spot. Lockett finished with five catches for 107 yards and a touchdown, while David Moore had four receptions for 103 yards and a score.
Wilson said Lockett was working on a move in Friday’s walkthrough practice where he broke off the play and went deep.
“There was a play where he kind of stuttered and then went. He said, ‘Hey, I’m just working on something, just in case we need it,'” Wilson said of Lockett. “The funny thing is we needed it.”
The Panthers, also 6-5, suddenly find themselves on the outside looking in at the NFC playoff picture after losing three straight and having their 10-game home winning streak snapped. The prospect of Carolina missing the playoffs would have been unimaginable at the beginning of the month.
“Three weeks ago if somebody had said this was going to happen I would have slapped them,” said quarterback Cam Newton, who completed 25 of 30 passes for 256 yards and two touchdowns.
Wilson tied the game with 3:26 remaining when he gambled on a fourth-and-3, lofting a 35-yard touchdown pass to Moore, who beat Corn Elder in the corner of the end zone. Panthers starting cornerback Donte Jackson injured his quad on the first play from scrimmage, which proved to be an issue for Carolina.
Newton completed all 14 pass attempts in the first half for 159 yards, including a 7-yard touchdown pass to Curtis Samuel to give the Panthers a 13-10 lead at halftime. Eight of those passes went to Christian McCaffrey, mostly on check-downs.
ANOTHER BIG MISS
Wilson’s big completion to Lockett came after Graham Gano missed a 52-yard field goal with 1:40 left in the game that would have given the Panthers the lead.
It snapped a remarkable string of 41 straight made field goals at home for Gano, including a 63-yarder earlier this year to beat the New York Giants.
“It’s really, really frustrating,” Gano said. “I’ve got the leg to make those kicks, that’s why it’s a tough one to swallow. They’ve got the faith in me to kick them from far, so I’ve got to go out there and make them.”
It’s the second straight week Gano has let the Panthers down. Last week against Detroit, he missed a field goal and an extra point in a 20-19 loss.
The Panthers spoiled a record-setting performance from McCaffrey, who had a franchise-record 237 yards from scrimmage and two more touchdowns. He had 17 carries for 125 yards and 11 catches for 112 yards, becoming the first Carolina player to surpass 100 yards in both receiving and rushing in the same game.
“That’s all great but I would rather win,” McCaffrey said. “It sucks when you lose. A lot of guys played well and those ones hurt.”
Said Seahawks coach Pete Carroll: “McCaffrey was awesome. Cam was awesome. But when they got into the red zone, we stopped them. We had four big stops, and they were all crucial.”
CARSON CARRIES THE LOAD
Chris Carson got the bulk of the carries for the Seahawks’ No. 1-ranked rushing attack, carrying 16 times for 55 yards and a 1-yard touchdown . He had a remarkable 15-yard run on which he nailed the landing — and kept running — after getting flipped on a low tackle by Panthers safety Eric Reid.
Overall, Seattle gained just 75 yards on the ground — about half of what they normally average.
“Luke Kuechly is one of the best linebackers in the game, so you know he’s going to make a couple plays,” Carson said. “For the most part we did what we could do in the run game.”
Reid continued his protest of racial and social injustice by kneeling during the national anthem. Seattle defensive tackle Quinton Jefferson and offensive tackle Duane Brown remained in the tunnel for the anthem as they have in previous weeks.
Seahawks: Doug Baldwin (groin) was a game-time decision, but played for Seattle and had five catches for 39 yards. … Fullback Tre Madden left in the second half with a shoulder injury.
Panthers: Jackson did not return after his quadriceps injury. … Punt returner Damiere Byrd left the game with an arm injury in the first half and did not return. … Wide receiver Devin Funchess (back) did not play.
Seahawks: Host the 49ers next Sunday.
Panthers: At the Buccaneers next Sunday.
Giants 22, Eagles 25
PHILADELPHIA (AP) — The injury-depleted defense held on long enough for Carson Wentz and Philadelphia’s new-found rushing attack to rally.
Jake Elliott kicked a 43-yard field goal with 22 seconds remaining, and the Eagles beat the New York Giants 25-22 on Sunday after trailing 12-0 early and 19-14 in the fourth quarter.
Wentz made key throws and undrafted rookie Josh Adams delivered big runs to put the defending Super Bowl champions back in the playoff chase.
“This was a big game mentally, to show resilience and battle back,” said Wentz, who was 20 of 28 for 236 yards and one touchdown.
Adams scored on a 1-yard TD run and ran up the middle for the 2-point conversion to give Philadelphia a 22-19 lead.
After the Giants tied it on Aldrick Rosas’ third field goal, a 29-yarder, the Eagles controlled the ball for 5:27.
Coach Doug Pederson went for a fourth-and-1 at the Giants 42 and Wentz completed a 12-yard pass to Nelson Agholor right before the two-minute warning. Adams ran three times and Elliott made the go-ahead kick.
“I had a lot of confidence in our guys, they played man zone and it was well executed,” Pederson said about the pass to Agholor. “Guys knew exactly what to do. Great job by Carson hanging in there in the pocket.”
The Giants started at their own 34 with 16 seconds left but couldn’t do much.
The Eagles (5-6) stayed in the mix in a mediocre NFC East. The Cowboys and Redskins are tied for first place at 6-5. The Giants fell to 3-8.
In the first half, Eli Manning picked apart a Philadelphia defense that was missing its top four cornerbacks, a starting safety and starting linebacker. But Manning threw an interception to Malcolm Jenkins at the Eagles 2 before the second quarter ended.
Saquon Barkley had 101 yards rushing for New York, and Odell Beckham Jr. caught only five passes for 85 yards against backups.
“Knowing they were struggling (with injuries) in the secondary, personally I would’ve loved to attack them. But that wasn’t in our game plan,” Beckham said.
The Eagles relied on their little-used rushing attack to take the lead in the fourth quarter. Wentz tossed a 23-yard screen pass to Corey Clement and the next six plays were runs, capped by Adams’ score.
Adams had a career-best 84 yards on 22 carries.
After Barkley broke loose up the middle for a 51-yard TD to give the Giants a 19-3 lead, the Eagles finally answered.
Wentz fired a 15-yard TD pass to Zach Ertz and flipped the ball to Clement on an option play for the 2-point conversion, cutting the deficit to 19-11 late in the second quarter.
Elliott’s 28-yard field goal made it 19-14 in the third.
The Eagles stepped up on defense, forcing three straight punts in the second half to allow the offense to rally.
Coming off the most lopsided loss by a defending champion — 48-7 at New Orleans — the Eagles fell behind early again.
The Giants jumped ahead on the opening drive. Manning flipped a 13-yard TD pass to Barkley, but the 2-point conversion failed after a penalty on the Eagles allowed the Giants to go for it from the 1.
The Eagles appeared to tie it on a 52-yard TD run by Adams but a holding penalty on center Jason Kelce negated the score.
Barkley only had five touches in the second half after 15 in the first.
“We’re going to spell him a little bit as we go,” Giants coach Pat Shurmur said. “It had nothing to do with the outcome of the game.”
The Eagles are 17-4 against the Giants since 2008, including 9-1 in the last 10.
The Eagles used Cre’von LeBlanc, Chandon Sullivan, and De’Vante Bausby as their starting cornerbacks. Only LeBlanc had ever started a game in the NFL.
“For me, it’s a dream come true,” LeBlanc said about covering Beckham. “He’s phenomenal. I fear no man. At the end of the day, line up, he put his pants on, I put my pants on and we’re gonna play ball.”
The Eagles were scoreless in the first quarter for the fifth straight game and ninth time this season. They only have 21 points in the opening quarter.
Giants: TE Evan Engram injured his hamstring in warmups and didn’t play. WR Quadree Henderson left with a shoulder injury.
Eagles: CBs Jalen Mills, Sidney Jones and Avonte Maddox and LB Jordan Hicks didn’t play. CB Ronald Darby and S Rodney McLeod already were lost for the season.
Giants: Host the Chicago Bears (8-3) next Sunday.
Eagles: Host the Washington Redskins (6-5) on Dec. 3.
49ers 9, Buccaneers 27
TAMPA, Fla. (AP) — James Winston is determined to make the most of his latest opportunity to prove he’s Tampa Bay’s long-term solution at quarterback.
The fourth-year pro sparkled in his first start in a month, throwing for 312 yards and two touchdowns in the Buccaneers’ 27-9 victory over the San Francisco 49ers on Sunday.
“Jameis played quarterback the way you need to play it in the NFL until you get into desperation time, which we never did today,” coach Dirk Koetter said after the Bucs (4-7) snapped a four-game losing streak.
“Jameis wasn’t perfect, but he played a good game. I’m proud of him. It’s been a difficult road,” Koetter added. “He sees what that looks like. He needs to consistently play like that and he can be one of the best.”
Winston, benched last month after turning the ball over 11 times in 14 quarters, completed 29 of 38 passes without an interception.
The No. 1 overall pick from the 2015 draft has shared the starting job with Ryan Fitzpatrick this season. Each has played well enough at times that Tampa Bay leads the NFL in passing yards and total offense,, however a porous defense and the league’s worst giveaway/takeaway ratio has undermined the team’s chances for success.
Winston led TD drives of 73, 75 and 85 yards. His 6-yard scoring pass to Cameron Brate put the Bucs up early, and later teamed with Adam Humphries on a 28-yard TD on a play the quarterback extended by scrambling to his right before throwing back toward the center of the field.
It was the same type of play that often comes back to haunt Winston, who’s been criticized throughout his career for poor decision-making.
“He was wide open. It was a decisive decision,” Winston said. “When you’re decisive with the ball, it’s no thinking about it. You trust your instincts and make the throw.”
Tampa Bay (4-7), meanwhile, had four sacks and forced turnovers on defense for the first time in eight games, with Ryan Smith and Isaiah Johnson coming up with the team’s first interceptions since a loss to Pittsburgh on Sept. 24. Midseason acquisition Cairo Santos also made two field goals and three extra points.
“We made all our kicks. We got two takeaways. We didn’t turn it over. Life is good,” Koetter said.
Matt Breida rushed for 106 yards for the 49ers (2-9). Nick Mullens threw a 13-yard TD pass to Dante Pettis in the second quarter, but couldn’t get the ball in the end zone after halftime and finished 18 of 32 for 221 yards and two interceptions.
Looking to cut into a 13-6 deficit, the 49ers settled for a field goal after driving inside the Bucs 1 early in the third quarter.
It was all Tampa Bay after that.
“It’s frustrating. We definitely had our chances and didn’t take advantage of them,” Mullens said. “That starts with me.”
San Francisco played without linebacker Reuben Foster, whom the 49ers plan to release after the second-year pro was arrested at the team hotel in Tampa and charged with one count of domestic violence.
Foster was jailed late Saturday night and released on $2,000 bond Sunday. The 2017 first-round draft pick out of Alabama will be placed on waivers officially on Monday.
“We just tried to make sure it wasn’t a distraction,” Mullens said. “That’s how we approached it. I don’t think it was.”
Coach Kyle Shanahan said the decision to cut Foster was immediate.
“Too many things have happened. We tried to help,” Shanahan said, adding that Foster likely wouldn’t have played anyway because of a hamstring injury.
“I care about Reuben, but nobody is bigger than the team. … Our No. 1 rule is you got to protect the team, and he has put us in a bad light too much. Hopefully this will fix him and he can be successful somewhere else,” Shanahan added.
Winston, who sat out the first three games of the season while serving a suspension for violating the NFL’s personal conduct policy, made his first start in a month. He was benched after throwing four interceptions in a loss at Cincinnati on Oct. 28, however Fitzpatrick was not much better protecting the ball in subsequent losses to Carolina, Washington and the New York Giants.
“I don’t have anything to prove to anyone. What we have to do is win,” Winston said. “The easiest way to win is to keep everything simple and not beat yourself.”
Mullens has not played well since his dazzling debut — 16 of 22 passing, 262 yards, three TDs, no interceptions — in a 34-3 victory over the Raiders. He threw two picks in a 27-23 loss to the Giants the following week. Sunday was his first road start.
“I didn’t think he played very well … but no one played very well in the passing game,” Shanahan said, adding he wasn’t sure if Mullens or C.J. Beathard will start next week against Seattle.
49ers: Played without injured WRs Pierre Garcon and Marquise Goodwin and RB Alfred Morris. … S Jimmie Ward left the game in the first quarter with a broken forearm. … S D.J. Reed (heel) left the game in the second half.
Buccaneers: LB Lavonte David (knee) and S Justin Evans (toe) remained sidelined for the second straight week. … T Demar Dotson limped off with a knee/hamstring problem late in the first half and did not return. … CB Carlton Davis II (knee) was shaken up in the third quarter and sat out the remainder of the game. … DE Jason Pierre-Paul (knee) left briefly before returning in the fourth quarter.
49ers: at Seattle, next Sunday
Buccaneers: Home vs. Carolina, next Sunday
Cardinals 10, Chargers 45
CARSON, Calif. (AP) — After a record-breaking day, Philip Rivers was quick to credit the guys on the receiving end of his pinpoint passes.
Rivers tied the NFL mark for consecutive completions and broke records for the most to start a game and the highest completion percentage in a game as the Los Angeles Chargers dismantled the Arizona Cardinals 45-10 on Sunday.
“There were some catches that could easily fall incomplete. There were a lot of guys involved in it,” Rivers said.
The 15-year veteran was on target with his first 25 passes and finished 28 of 29 for 259 yards and three touchdowns in three quarters. It was also his 11th straight game with multiple TD passes.
Rivers’ 25 straight completions tied Ryan Tannehill’s mark from 2015. The Dolphins QB completed his last seven throws against the Tennessee Titans in on Oct. 18, 2015, and then his first 18 the following week against the Houston Texans.
“There are far-off dreams where you wonder if you are going to have a game where you are never going to miss one and then you say, ‘Probably not.’ The fact that we were staying there in the fourth quarter says something,” Rivers said.
Rivers came in having completed 67 percent of his throws this season, good for 13th in the league. Now he’s at 69.5 percent, which would tie his career best.
Rivers — who said he did not know he was near Tannehill’s record — tied the mark for consecutive completions with a 4-yard touchdown pass to Keenan Allen midway through the third quarter. He had his only incompletion on the next possession when he was rushed and was unable to connect on a short pass to Austin Ekeler.
Rivers did break Mark Brunell’s record for completions to start a game. Brunell had 22 straight for the Washington Redskins against the Houston Texans on Sept. 24, 2006. Rivers’ 96.8 percent accuracy surpassed Kurt Warner’s 92.3 percent, which was set in 2009 when he went 24 of 26 for Arizona against Jacksonville.
“He was hot,” Chargers coach Anthony Lynn said. “Guys were getting open and making plays for him. There were some great catches out there today.”
All three of Rivers’ touchdown passes were plays near the boundary where the receiver was able to bring the ball in while being covered. Mike Williams caught two in the corner of the end zone, and Allen’s was just inbounds while being draped by Arizona’s Tre Boston.
“He makes everything easier for us as receivers,” Williams said. “Philip put the ball up for me to go make a play and I’m just going up and making it.”
Of Rivers’ 28 completions — which went to seven players — eight came on screen passes behind the line of scrimmage. Five were in the air for 10 yards or more, including three that were 20 or more yards.
The Cardinals (2-9) jumped out to a 10-0 lead with scores on their first two possessions before the Chargers (8-3) scored touchdowns on six of seven possessions. Los Angeles seized momentum with a 28-point second quarter.
“We played a complete football game,” Lynn said. “It started off slow but we made adjustments and guys responded.”
Rivers was 19 of 19 in the first half for 187 yards. According to SportRadar, the last perfect first half with 15 or more attempts was by Warren Moon, who went 16 of 16 for Seattle against Oakland on Nov. 1, 1998. He completed all 10 passes during a two-minute drill that culminated in Williams’ TD with 16 seconds remaining.
Melvin Gordon, who came into the game sixth in the league in rushing, ran for two touchdowns in the second quarter before suffering a knee injury in the third. He finished with 61 yards on 10 carries.
Austin Ekeler accounted for 103 yards from scrimmage (35 rushing, 68 receiving) and a touchdown.
Arizona’s Josh Rosen, who grew up nearby in Manhattan Beach and played at UCLA, was 12 of 19 for 105 yards with a touchdown and interception. David Johnson had 17 carries for 63 yards. The Cardinals had 108 yards of offense in the first quarter but just 41 the rest of the game.
“We talked about coming in here on the road, starting fast. I thought we did a great job of doing that, taking the first drive down and scoring, and from that point, the wheels just sort of fell off a little bit,” Cardinals coach Steve Wilks said.
41 AND COUNTING
Larry Fitzgerald’s 25-yard touchdown from Rosen was his first career catch at StubHub Center, the 41st different stadium where Fitzgerald has a reception. He could extend that total when the Cardinals go to Atlanta’s Mercedes-Benz Stadium on Dec. 16.
BOSA BREAKS OUT
Defensive end Joey Bosa, who returned last week after missing the first nine games with a bone bruise in his left foot, had two sacks and five tackles.
“I felt more confident knowing I went through 31 plays last week,” said Bosa, who had the sixth multi-sack game of his three-year career. “It felt amazing to get a sack. It’s been too long between sacks. It was fun.”
Cardinals: Linebacker Josh Bynes suffered a thumb injury during the second quarter. Wilks said the injury is not considered to be serious.
Chargers: Gordon did not return after his knee injury. Lynn said he hopes to know more on Monday, adding: “Hopefully what happened is not serious. His durability has been pretty good this season.”
Cardinals: Travel to Green Bay next Sunday.
Chargers: Travel to Pittsburgh next Sunday for a prime-time game.
Steelers 17, Broncos 24
DENVER (AP) — For a man who tips the scales at close to 300 pounds, nose tackle Shelby Harris sure gets overlooked a lot.
Ben Roethlisberger didn’t see him Sunday when Harris intercepted his pass to Antonio Brown from the Denver 2 with 1:03 remaining, sealing the Broncos’ 24-17 win that snapped the Pittsburgh Steelers’ six-game winning streak.
“Of all the interceptions I’ve thrown it’s one of the most fluky I’ve been associated with,” Roethlisberger said. “I never thought in a million years a defensive lineman would get blocked off the ball that far, right into an interception.”
The Broncos (5-6), who ended the Chargers’ six-game winning streak last week, weren’t surprised by Harris’ big play.
After getting cut seven times by the Raiders, Jets and Cowboys, Harris has finally made a name for himself in the last year and a half in Denver.
“I love Shelby. He’s worked his tail off,” teammate Chris Harris Jr. said. “He’s a guy that came out of nowhere and people kept cutting him and cutting him and he just kept fighting, man. I love Shelby and the effort that he has. He always makes plays for us.”
Not like this.
“I got to prove to everyone that I have the best hands on the team,” Harris said of his first career interception, which came 48 hours after he missed Friday’s practice for the birth of his daughter.
Maybe Roethlisberger didn’t see him, Shelby Harris said, “but the ball saw me.”
“All I saw,” Brown said, “was an interception.”
Harris kept the football and said he would take it with him to the hospital to see his wife and newborn afterward.
The Broncos used four takeaways to counter a 97-yard touchdowntoss from Roethlisberger to JuJu Smith-Schuster and hand the Steelers (7-3-1) their first loss since September.
“It’s going to be a quiet plane ride home,” said Smith-Schuster, whose 13 catches for 189 yards weren’t enough to keep Pittsburgh from losing for just the second time in its last 18 regular-season road games.
Cornerback Bradley Roby and safety Darian Stewart were burned on Smith-Schuster’s long touchdown grab, but they made up for it when they teamed up on the final play of the third quarter for Denver’s third takeaway .
“I knew I had to do something,” said Roby, who forced James Connor to cough up the football after a 23-yard gain. Stewart recovered it at the Denver 21.
The Broncos then went 79 yards in 11 plays with Phillip Lindsay , who gained 110 yards on just 14 carries, taking it in from the 2 to break a 17-17 tie.
Roethlisberger was 41 of 56 for 462 yards, extending his NFL record with his sixth 450-yard passing game.
His only TD came in a highly unlikely situation, with the Steelers backed up at their 3. Backpedaling, Roethlisberger uncorked his pass just as Shelby Harris knocked him on his back in the end zone.
“They got pressure really quick,” Roethlisberger said. “I saw JuJu went inside and I just let it go.”
Smith-Schuster, who raced past Roby, hauled it in at the Pittsburgh 35, cut toward the Broncos’ sideline and stiff-armed Stewart on his way to breaking a 10-10 tie.
His 97-yard TD matched the longest pass play in franchise history, and was one yard shy of the longest TD the Broncos had ever surrendered, a 98-yard run by Green Bay’s Ahman Green in 2003.
“That’s a great quarterback making a great play to a great receiver,” Broncos defensive end Derek Wolfe said. “You’ve just got to bounce back and figure out a way to get past it, and we did.”
FAKE FIELD GOAL
Roethlisberger had 25 completions by halftime, the most in the first half in the regular season by a Steelers QB since 1960, but it took a fake field goal for Pittsburgh to reach the end zone.
Kicker Chris Boswell threw a 2-yard touchdown pass to left tackle Alejandro Villanueva to tie it at 10.
Boswell took the direct snap and threw a perfect pass to a wide-open Villanueva — who was a receiver and tight end at Army and became the first Steelers O-lineman to catch a touchdown pass since Ray Pinney against the Browns in 1983.
“It was cool to see all the guys get excited like that for me, especially because I think I dropped it in practice last week,” Villanueva said.
The Steelers frittered away a shot at 10 more points in the first half.
Justin Simmons blocked Boswell’s 48-yard field goal attempt and safety Will Parks punched away the football just as tight end Xavier Grimble was about to score on a 24-yard catch-and-run. The ball went out of bounds in the end zone for a touchback.
Steelers: T.J. Watt (wrist) and TE Vance McDonald (hip) left the game but both returned.
Broncos: CB Tramaine Brock (ribs), TE Jeff Heuerman (torso) and OLB Shaq Barrett (hip) didn’t return to action after getting hurt.
Steelers: Return home to host the Chargers in another must-see matchup.
Broncos: Travel to Cincinnati to face the league’s worst defense.
Dolphins 24, Colts 27
INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — Andrew Luck was at his best when it mattered most for the Indianapolis Colts.
Including some fancy footwork at a big moment.
After throwing three TD passes, Luck calmly stepped through Miami’s pass rush and found Chester Rogers for a 34-yard gain that helped set up Adam Vinatieri’s 32-yard field goal as time expired in the Colts’ improbable 27-24 victory over the Dolphins on Sunday.
“There’s a moment there where you’re thinking ‘Don’t go down, stay up, give our guys a chance,'” Luck said. “I’m glad it worked out.”
For most of Indianapolis’ fifth straight win, Luck & Co. struggled.
He was picked off twice in a 17-second span at the end of the first half. The Colts also lost a fumble. They had a punt partially blocked and Vinatieri came up well short on a makeable field goal — though it appeared the Dolphins (5-6) might have deflected the kick.
Then, with the Colts trailing 24-14 early in the fourth, Luck found a way to rally his teammates.
He overcame two offensive penalties to set up Vinatieri’s 46-yard field goal with 8:26 left. He fired a perfect 12-yard strike to Eric Ebron, tying it at 24 with 4:25 remaining. And after the Colts’ defense forced a second straight three-and-out, Luck took over on his own 42 and kept his balance just long enough on third-and-9 to connect with Rogers.
“I didn’t think that,” coach Frank Reich said when asked if he thought Luck might fall down. “I saw him stepping up and I’m so accustomed to him finding a way to make a play. I wasn’t anticipating him finding someone for a 30- or 40-yard gain, but what a play.”
Four plays later, Vinatieri trotted onto the field and made the 28th game-winning kick of his career.
The resurgent Luck finished 30 of 37 for 343 yards. He has thrown at least three TD passes in eight consecutive games, tying Peyton Manning for the second-longest streak in NFL history.
Luck also had his first career reception , a 4-yard catch for a fourth-down conversion that eventually led to a 1-yard TD pass to Jack Doyle late in the first half.
It’s the longest win streak for Indianapolis (6-5) since it also won five in a row in the first half of the 2014 season.
The Dolphins, meanwhile, have lost 10 of their last 11 road games — perhaps none more frustrating than this game.
Ryan Tannehill returned after missing five games with a shoulder injury and played well from the start.
His 33-yard TD pass to Kenyan Drake on the opening possession ended the team’s nine-quarter streak without a touchdown and his 74-yard TD pass to Leonte Carroo tied it at 14 late in the first half. Jason Sanders kicked a 29-yard field goal early in the third quarter and Drake’s nifty 14-yard run with 13:36 remaining gave the Dolphins a 24-14 lead.
With Luck working his magic, it didn’t last. He led the Colts on three scoring drives in the final 8 1/2 minutes.
“It hurts,” Tannehill said. “We were in a good position to win and to not finish it hurts.”
Dolphins: Receiver Danny Amendola (right knee) and center Travis Swanson (ankle) both left in the first quarter.
Colts: Linebacker Darius Leonard injured his knee on the first play of the game but returned on the next defensive series. Running back Marlon Mack entered the concussion protocol in the fourth quarter.
Dolphins: Frank Gore ran 14 times for 67 yards against his former team. … Drake caught five passes for 64 yards and the TD. … Xavien Howard picked off Luck twice. … The Dolphins squandered their last chance when Howard was called for a personal foul following the Colts’ last touchdown and Senorise Perry drew a holding call on the ensuing return to pin Miami at its own 6-yard line.
Colts: Luck’s streak of consecutive dropbacks without a sack ended at 239. … Ebron has 11 TDs this season — matching his career total coming into this season. … T.Y. Hilton had seven catches for 125 yards. … Mack ran 15 times for 85 yards.
Dolphins: Host Buffalo in a division matchup next Sunday.
Colts: Visit Jacksonville next Sunday, seeking a series sweep of last year’s AFC runner-up.
Packers 17, Vikings 24
MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — Once Kirk Cousins and the Minnesota Vikings took the lead on Green Bay, they played with a fierce refusal to let it go.
They held onto the ball with the same determination.
Cousins bounced back from his worst game of the season with 342 passing yards and three touchdowns without a fumble or an interception, and the Vikings overcame some early gaffes to outlast the depleted Packers for a 24-17 victory on Sunday night.
Completing 29 of his 38 attempts, Cousins found Dalvin Cook , Stefon Diggs and Adam Thielen for scores. Diggs and Thielen had eight receptions apiece.
“It just kind of shows his character, shows what kind of player he is, to be able to just not really care what people talk about him, not really care about what happened last week,” Thielen said of Cousins, adding: “The throws he was making, his full game was really impressive. That’s what you expect out of him.”
Sheldon Richardson had two sacks to lead the defense’s game-long stifling of Aaron Rodgers, and the Vikings (6-4-1) pushed the Packers (4-6-1) further back in the NFC wild card race.
The Vikings won a night game for the first time this season after losing to the top three teams in the NFC: to the Rams in Los Angeles, at home to the New Orleans Saints and at Chicago in a two-interception game by Cousins against the first-place Bears. The Vikings entered the weekend with the fourth-most turnovers in the NFL, and Cousins has been charged with 13 of the 16 giveaways. Coach Mike Zimmer was so impressed by the way Cousins played against the Packers that he gave him the game ball in the locker room afterward .
“Last week left a bad taste in our mouths,” Cousins said, “and the chance to come back on Sunday night football against a division rival at home was a great opportunity, and I’m glad we made the most of it.”
Rodgers threw a touchdown pass to Davante Adams and Aaron Jones scored on a short run for a 14-7 lead early in the second quarter, but the Packers fell to 0-6 on the road this season and 1-5-1 against the Vikings in their last seven meetings. Their final seven possessions produced only one field goal, with five punts and one turnover on downs.
“We’ve all got to play better, myself included,” Rodgers said. “Started off the game nice. We had a couple good drives. We’re rolling there. We hit our unfortunate typical lull and didn’t get it going again.”
With Randall Cobb out (hamstring) for a sixth game this season and rookies Equanimeous St. Brown (elbow) and Trevor Davis (hamstring) forced out in the second half, Rodgers didn’t have much to work with down the field. Left guard Lane Taylor (quadriceps) departed in the first half and left tackle David Bakhtiari (knee) was sidelined in the second half, leaving the protection shaky at best. Rodgers finished 17 for 28 for 198 yards, without a turnover.
The Packers failed to move the chains on eight of 10 third downs. Jones was stuffed on fourth-and-inches by Harrison Smith, Danielle Hunter and Eric Kendricks midway through the third quarter, giving the Vikings the ball at the Green Bay 44. That set up a 37-yard field goal by Dan Bailey for Minnesota’s first lead of the game.
“We’re definitely not in the position, record-wise, we thought we would be in coming into the year or even after this game. We thought we could get the victory. But unfortunately we ran out of gas,” Packers linebacker Clay Matthews said. “We’re beat up, no doubt about that. But give them credit: They put in a full four quarters.”
The Vikings outgained the Packers 280-139 in total yardage in the first half, but they had to settle for a tie at the break. About to go for it on fourth-and-inches on the opening drive following a timeout to strategize, they were penalized for 12 men on the field and had to punt.
Diggs collided with Thielen when Jaire Alexander crashed their pick play on the second possession, and after Diggs tried to circle back the other way with an ill-fated salvage attempt he lost 10 yards on that reception to lead to another punt.
Bailey’s wide left 48-yard try wasted another highlight-reel catch by Thielen in between Alexander and Josh Jones that went for 33 yards. Later in the second quarter, after some mismanagement of the clock, the Vikings had to hustle to set up a 51-yard kick for Bailey. That one was good, but Rashod Hill was called for a false start. The 56-yarder sliced right, the fifth straight missed field goal against the Packers after rookie Daniel Carlson went 0 for 3 in Green Bay and was cut the next day.
PACKED AND HAPPY HOUSE
The announced attendance of 66,872 was the largest for the Vikings in three years at U.S. Bank Stadium. A handful of Minnesota players were introduced in the first quarter with Paul Bunyan’s Axe, the trophy the Gophers repossessed from the rival Badgers in Wisconsin on Saturday to end a 14-game losing streak. Randy Moss kept the crowd fired up in a halftime ceremony to receive his Pro Football Hall of Fame ring.
Packers: In addition to the carnage on offense, SS Kentrell Brice aggravated an ankle injury in the first quarter and was knocked out of action in the third quarter with a possible concussion. CB Kevin King and CB Bashaud Breeland were already inactive with injuries.
Vikings: RT Brian O’Neill left in the third quarter for evaluation for a possible concussion. … CB Xavier Rhodes limped off with an apparent injury to his right hamstring in the fourth quarter.
Packers: Host Arizona (2-9) next Sunday afternoon.
Vikings: Play at New England (8-3) next Sunday afternoon.
Titans 17, Texans 34
HOUSTON (AP) — Deshaun Watson threw for 210 yards and two touchdowns and ran for a third as the Houston Texans set a franchise record with their eighth straight win, 34-17 over the Tennessee Titans on Monday night.
Demaryius Thomas scored his first two touchdowns as a Texan and Lamar Miller ran for 162 yards, including a 97-yard TD.
In the first game since founder and owner Robert “Bob” McNair died on Friday, the Texans (8-3) honored him by wearing decals on the back of their helmets in the shape of a football with white block letters bearing his initials of “RCM.”
With that reminder on their helmets, they became the first team in NFL history to win eight games in a row after starting 0-3. They lead Indianapolis by two games in the AFC South.
The Texans trailed by 10 early before reeling off 27 straight points. Tennessee (5-6) finally scored again on a 48-yard reception by Corey Davis late in the third quarter, but the second TD by Thomas — this one for 10 yards — made it 34-17 with just more than eight minutes left.
Marcus Mariota, who missed the second half of last week’s game after suffering a stinger, was 22 of 23 for 303 yards and two touchdowns. He completed his first 19 passes before an incompletion with just more than a minute remaining.
Miller’s 97-yard breakaway in the second quarter made it 21-10. It was the longest run in franchise history and the longest run in the NFL since his dash of the same length for a touchdown on Dec. 28, 2014, while with the Dolphins. He’s now the only player in league history with two career rushing touchdowns of 95 yards or longer.
The Titans went ahead 3-0 on their first possession, and Jonnu Smith had a career-long 61-yard catch-and-run touchdown that extended their lead less than halfway through the first quarter.
Houston got going after that, cutting the lead to 10-7 when Thomas grabbed his first touchdown since being traded from Denver on Oct. 30, a 12-yard grab with about six minutes left in the quarter.
Watson put the Texans on top when he scrambled 15 yards for a score on the first play of the second quarter.
The Titans went for it on fourth-and-inches from the 3 later in the second, but tight end Luke Stocker was stopped for no gain.
Miller’s long TD, which helped Houston set a franchise record with 281 yards rushing, came on the next play. He took the handoff in the end zone and darted through a crowd of Titans before shedding one tackle and simply outrunning the rest of the defense.
The Texans kicked a field goal as time expired in the second quarter to take a 24-10 lead into halftime.
The Texans honored McNair in a pregame ceremony, which included a video tribute to him while the Texas A&M Singing Cadets sang “Amazing Grace.” While the video was played, one side of the video board displayed the words: “Faith, Family, Philanthropy, Football.”
Painted on both 25-yard lines was a football with his initials that looked just like the decals on the players’ helmets.
Television cameras panned to several fans with signs honoring the late owner with one that read: “McNair Never Forgotten.”
Titans cornerback Malcolm Butler left in the second quarter to be evaluated for a concussion and did not return. … Houston WR Keke Coutee didn’t return after injuring his hamstring in the third quarter.
Titans: Host the New York Jets on Sunday.
Texans: Host the Cleveland Browns on Sunday.