Published December 09, 2014
Oakland, CA – Green Bay, WI (SportsNetwork.com) - Aaron Rodgers fired three touchdown passes and Green Bay survived a shootout with Atlanta, as the Packers took a 43-37 victory on Monday. Rodgers went 24-for-36 for 327 yards, with Jordy Nelson catching eight passes for 146 yards and two scores for the Packers (10-3), who have ripped off five straight victories. It was the 100th start in Rodgers' career and he has a 68-32 mark in that time, same as former Packer Brett Favre. Eddie Lacy posted one touchdown rushing and one receiving, while totaling 106 yards and James Starks also had a rushing touchdown and 101 total yards for Green Bay, which remained one game ahead of Detroit for first place in the NFC North. Julio Jones had a career night for Atlanta, catching 11 balls for 259 yards and a touchdown. He was off the field for Atlanta's last scoring drive, though, with a hip injury. Matt Ryan finished the game with four touchdown passes and an interception on 24-of-39 attempts for 375 yards for the Falcons (5-8), who still sit tied atop the NFC South thanks to New Orleans' loss to Carolina on Sunday.
SUNDAY, DECEMBER 7
Final Score: Pittsburgh 42, Cincinnati 21
Cincinnati, OH (SportsNetwork.com) - Le'Veon Bell ran for the go-ahead touchdown and Ben Roethlisberger hit Martavis Bryant for a 94-yard score during Pittsburgh's big fourth quarter in a 42-21 victory over the AFC North- leading Cincinnati Bengals. Bell finished with 26 carries for 185 yards and two TDs, both in the final quarter, when the Steelers (8-5) outscored the Bengals, 25-0. Bell also had a touchdown reception, and Roethlisberger completed 25-of-39 passes for 350 yards and three scores to guide the Steelers to their fifth win in the last seven games. Andy Dalton finished 21-of-29 for 302 yards and a pair of scores for the Bengals (8-4-1), who had a three-game winning streak broken. A.J. Green caught 11 passes for a career- best 224 yards and a score. With Baltimore (8-5) winning at Miami and Cleveland (7-6) losing at home to Indianapolis Sunday, there is a crush in the division standings. The schedule is tough for both teams over the final three games. The Bengals play at Cleveland before hosting Denver on a Monday night, then conclude the season in Pittsburgh. The Steelers play at Atlanta then host Kansas City before what could be a giant encounter against the Bengals.
Final Score: Indianapolis 25, Cleveland 24
Cleveland, OH (SportsNetwork.com) - Andrew Luck's 1-yard touchdown pass to T.Y. Hilton with 32 seconds left in the fourth quarter rallied the Indianapolis Colts to a 25-24 victory over the Cleveland Browns. The Colts (9-4) won their third straight game to inch closer to the AFC South title, while dealing the Browns (7-6) a heart-breaking defeat after they blew a two- touchdown lead. Luck connected on 24-of-53 throws for 294 yards with two scores and a pair of interceptions, both to Hilton, who had 10 catches for 150 yards. The Colts hold a two-game lead on Houston and can win the division with a home victory against the Texans next Sunday. The Browns had a pair of defensive TDs, but lost their second straight for the first time this season. It was a perfect opportunity for Cleveland to gain ground in the AFC North, especially with Cincinnati (8-4-1) falling at home to Pittsburgh (8-5) Sunday. The Ravens (8-5) won in Miami. Brian Hoyer finished 14-of-31 for 140 yards with two interceptions for the Browns.
Final Score: Detroit 34, Tampa Bay 17
Detroit, MI (SportsNetwork.com) - Matthew Stafford had three touchdown passes, and Joique Bell scored twice as the Detroit Lions pounded the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, 34-17, at Ford Field on Sunday. Stafford went 26-for-34 for 311 yards with touchdown passes to Bell, Calvin Johnson and Joseph Fauria for the Lions (9-4), who have won two straight after consecutive road losses. Johnson finished the game with eight catches for 158 yards, while Bell had 18 carries for 83 yards and a rushing touchdown while adding five catches for 50 yards for Detroit. The Lions are still in the hunt for the top spot in the NFC North, as the team remains a game back of the Packers for first place. Josh McCown was under pressure all day as he was sacked six times and took several hard hits. He completed 20-for-39 passes for 250 yards with two touchdown passes, but he was picked off twice and also lost a fumble. Vincent Jackson caught 10 passes for 159 yards, and Mike Evans caught both touchdown passes for the Buccaneers (2-11), who have lost their last three games.
Final Score: Houston 27, Jacksonville 13
Jacksonville, FL (SportsNetwork.com) - Arian Foster ran for 127 yards and a touchdown and helped the Houston Texans stay in the playoff hunt with a 27-13 victory over the Jaguars on a rainy Sunday in Jacksonville. The Texans (7-6), who earned consecutive wins for the first time since starting the season 2-0, still sit two games behind the AFC South-leading Colts but can make up ground with a visit to Indianapolis next week. They trailed 13-10 at halftime but scored 17 unanswered points as their defense -- led by J.J. Watt's three sacks -- limited Jacksonville to 73 yards after the break. Ryan Fitzpatrick only threw 19 times and finished with 135 yards through the air but did run for a touchdown. One of his favorite targets, Andre Johnson, exited early in the second quarter with a concussion. Blake Bortles and the Jaguars (2-11) failed to build off last week's 25-24 come-from-behind victory over the Giants. Bortles completed only 20-of-39 passes for 205 yards with a touchdown and an interception.
Final Score: Baltimore 28, Miami 13
Miami, FL (SportsNetwork.com) - Joe Flacco threw two touchdown passes and ran for another score as the visiting Baltimore Ravens overcame a sluggish start to post a 28-13 victory over the Miami Dolphins in a crucial AFC matchup. Flacco was 25-of-33 for 269 yards and Justin Forsett added a rushing touchdown for the Ravens (8-5), who kept pace in the AFC North race. They are tied with Pittsburgh behind division-leading Cincinnati, which stands at 8-4-1. Ryan Tannehill finished 23-of-33 for 227 yards and a touchdown for a Miami (7-6) team that entered the game owning the AFC's second wild-card spot due to tiebreakers.
Final Score: Minnesota 30, NY Jets 24 (OT)
Minneapolis, MN (SportsNetwork.com) - Jarius Wright turned a screen pass into a winning 87-yard touchdown in overtime, lifting the Minnesota Vikings over the New York Jets 30-24 on Sunday. Facing a 3rd-and-5 on his team's first possession of overtime, Vikings quarterback Teddy Bridgewater threw a pass to Wright behind the line of scrimmage. Wright got the first down and proceeded to beat the Jets defense down the sideline to win the game. Bridgewater completed 19-of-27 passes for 309 yards and a pair of touchdowns with an interception to lead the Vikings (6-7) to their second straight win. Wright finished with 123 yards on four catches, and Charles Johnson also scored with four catches for 103 yards. Matt Asiata led Minnesota with 54 rushing yards and linebacker Gerald Hodges returned an interception for a touchdown for the first score of the game. Geno Smith threw for 254 yards, a touchdown and an interception for the Jets (2-11), who have lost three in a row. Percy Harvin caught six passes for 124 yards and a touchdown against his former team and Eric Decker added 89 yards on six catches for the Jets. Chris Ivory ran for 73 yards on 16 carries, and Chris Johnson finished the day with 16 carries for 53 yards.
Final Score: Carolina 41, New Orleans 10
New Orleans, LA (SportsNetwork.com) - Cam Newton had a hand in four of Carolina's five touchdowns, as the Panthers walked into the Superdome and embarrassed the New Orleans Saints by a 41-10 count on Sunday. Newton passed for 226 yards and three touchdowns on 21-of-33 efficiency and rushed for 83 yards and another score on 12 carries for the Panthers (4-8-1), who suddenly find themselves back in the race for the NFC South crown. Jonathan Stewart racked up a game-best 155 yards on the ground with a TD on 20 attempts, while Greg Olsen was Newton's top target with 10 receptions for 72 yards and a touchdown. Drew Brees was contained for most of the contest, but threw for 235 yards and a score to Benjamin Watson for the Saints (5-8), who hadn't lost four in a row at home since 1999 -- Mike Ditka's final season as head coach. Marques Colston totaled 72 yards on five catches, while the rushing tandem of Mark Ingram and Pierre Thomas was limited to 81 yards on 15 combined carries.
Final Score: NY Giants 36, Tennessee 7
Nashville, TN (SportsNetwork.com) - Rookie Andre Williams rushed for a career- high 131 yards, much of it on a 50-yard touchdown run that helped the New York Giants snap a seven-game losing streak with a 36-7 win over the Tennessee Titans on Sunday. Something had to give between the two teams, who came into the game with 13 consecutive losses between them. While the Giants (4-9) ended their skid, the Titans (2-11) remained winless since Oct. 12, losing seven in a row for the first time since an 11-game slide in 1994 when they were the Houston Oilers. Eli Manning threw for 260 yards with a 15-yard touchdown pass to rising star Odell Beckham Jr., who had 11 catches for 130 yards. Much of New York's scoring came on five Josh Brown field goals and a defensive touchdown from Markus Kuhn, who returned a Zach Mettenberger fumble. Mettenberger re-injured his sprained right shoulder in the fourth quarter after going 14-of-24 for 125 yards. Jake Locker relieved him for the second week in a row and also threw a pick. Marqueston Huff scored the only Tennessee points on a 23-yard interception return in the third quarter.
Final Score: St. Louis 24, Washington 0
Landover, MD (SportsNetwork.com) - Michael Brockers, Janoris Jenkins, Alec Ogletree and Greg Robinson were in the St. Louis Rams' starting lineup. Robert Griffin III was still on the Washington Redskins bench, at least for the first 58 minutes. Shaun Hill tossed a pair of touchdown passes to Jared Cook and the Rams blanked the Redskins 24-0 on Sunday afternoon to record their second straight shutout win. After Tavon Austin's 78-yard punt return staked the Rams to a 24-0 advantage late in the third quarter, chants of "RGIII, RGIII, RGIII," reverberated throughout FedEx Field. Griffin, though, never got the call until two minutes remained after Colt McCoy departed with a neck strain. Brockers, Jenkins, Ogletree and Robinson were among the slew of players the Rams received from their 2012 blockbuster trade with Washington. Hill was 16-of-22 for 213 yards, while Cook hauled in four passes for 61 yards for St. Louis (6-7), which posted back-to-back shutouts for the first time since 1945. The Rams blanked Oakland 52-0 last Sunday. The defense recorded seven sacks, two interceptions and eight tackles for loss in the triumph. Pierre Garcon tallied nine receptions for 95 yards for the Redskins (3-10), who have dropped five games in a row.
Final Score: Arizona 17, Kansas City 14
Glendale, AZ (SportsNetwork.com) - Drew Stanton tossed a go-ahead 26-yard touchdown pass to Jaron Brown late in the third quarter and Arizona's defense held off Kansas City in the fourth as the Cardinals edged the Chiefs 17-14 on Sunday. Stanton had lost two of his last three starts coming in after Carson Palmer was lost for the season with a knee injury during a Week 10 victory over St. Louis. He was 15-of-30 for 239 yards for Arizona (10-3), which remained a game ahead of the Seattle Seahawks for first place in the NFC West. Seattle beat Philadelphia 24-14 on Sunday. Ball-hawking safety Tyrann Mathieu will miss significant time after fracturing his left thumb and the secondary took another blow with the loss of Antonio Cromartie. He hurt his left Achilles during the middle stages of the fourth and had to be carted off the field. Jamaal Charles gained 91 yards on 10 totes with a rushing and receiving touchdown, while Travis Kelce totaled 110 yards on seven receptions for the Chiefs (7-6), who have dropped three straight on the heels of a five-game winning streak.
Final Score: Denver 24, Buffalo 17
Denver, CO (SportsNetwork.com) - C.J. Anderson's three touchdown runs and a solid defensive effort led the Denver Broncos to a narrow 24-17 victory over the playoff-hopeful Buffalo Bills on Sunday. Peyton Manning failed to throw a touchdown pass for the first time in over four years, but the Broncos (10-3) nevertheless came away with their third straight win and stayed in sole possession of first place in the AFC West. Manning threw two interceptions and finished with a season-low in passing yards (173) for the second straight week. His streak of tossing a TD pass ended at 51, one shy of tying Tom Brady for the second-longest in NFL history. Anderson and Juwan Thompson combined for 121 yards on the ground, and Wes Welker caught six passes for 82 yards for the victors. Buffalo (7-6) forced three turnovers but gave it away three times as well and committed 11 penalties for 98 yards. Kyle Orton threw for 355 yards with a touchdown and two interceptions for the Bills, who were trying to win three in a row for the first time since the start of the 2011 season. Orton also ran for a 1-yard touchdown with 55 seconds remaining, but Denver recovered the ensuing onside kick to seal the win. Sammy Watkins caught seven passes for 127 yards and lost a fumble near midfield on Buffalo's opening drive.
Final Score: Oakland 24, San Francisco 13
Oakland, CA (SportsNetwork.com) - Derek Carr had three touchdown passes to lead the Oakland Raiders in a 24-13 victory over the San Francisco 49ers on Sunday. Carr went 22-for-28 for 254 yards with touchdown passes to Donald Penn, Marcel Reece and Mychal Rivera as the Raiders (2-11) bounced back from a 52-0 loss at St. Louis last week. Colin Kaepernick went 18-for-33 for 174 yards, one touchdown and two interceptions for the 49ers (7-6), who have dropped two straight to deal a hard blow to their postseason hopes.
Final Score: Seattle 24, Philadelphia 14
Philadelphia, PA (SportsNetwork.com) - Russell Wilson accounted for three touchdowns, including one on a 15-yard pass to Marshawn Lynch that helped the Seattle Seahawks pull away in the second half for a 24-14 win over the Philadelphia Eagles on Sunday. The Seahawks (9-4) controlled the game more than the score showed, holding Chip Kelly's fast-paced offense to just 139 yards in 18 minutes of possession to get their third win in a row. The Eagles (9-4) had a 10-game regular season home winning streak snapped and fell into a tie with Dallas for first place in the NFC East nine days after beating the Cowboys convincingly on Thanksgiving. The Seahawks, who were also coming off a win over division rival San Francisco on Thanksgiving, remained a game behind Arizona in the NFC West. Wilson was 22-of-37 passing for 263 yards and two touchdowns and scrambled for a 26-yard score in the first half that countered an early Eagles touchdown. Lynch rushed 23 times for 86 yards -- going over 1,000 yards for the fourth season in a row -- and Doug Baldwin had five catches for 97 yards and a score. Mark Sanchez completed just 10 of his 20 passes for 96 yards in his fifth straight start for the injured Nick Foles. He threw touchdown passes to Jeremy Maclin and Zach Ertz, but McCoy ran for just 50 yards on 17 carries against a stout Seattle front four. Philadelphia's division lead disappeared with the loss, which came three days after Dallas beat the Bears on Thursday night in Chicago. The Cowboys will visit Philadelphia for a key game next Sunday night.
Final Score: New England 23, San Diego 14
San Diego, CA (SportsNetwork.com) - Tom Brady has Philip Rivers' number. It's that simple. Brady threw for 317 yards with two touchdowns and an interception as the New England Patriots defeated the San Diego Chargers, 23-14, on Sunday night. New England's signal-caller improved to 6-0 all-time against Rivers' Chargers. Julian Edelman totaled 141 yards on eight catches with a touchdown that essentially sealed the game in the fourth quarter, and Rob Gronkowski also caught a touchdown pass for the Patriots (10-3), who have won at least 10 games for a 14th consecutive season. Rivers couldn't generate much offense for his team throughout the night, throwing for 189 yards with a touchdown and interception. San Diego had its three-game winning streak snapped and will host AFC West-leading Denver in a pivotal division matchup next Sunday.
THURSDAY, DECEMBER 4
Final Score: Dallas 41, Chicago 28
Chicago, IL (SportsNetwork.com) - The Dallas Cowboys stayed perfect on the road and ended a three-game losing streak to the Chicago Bears by getting the ball to DeMarco Murray every chance they could. Murray had 41 touches and gained 228 yards from scrimmage as the Cowboys shook off a demoralizing division loss on Thanksgiving to beat the Bears 41-28 on Thursday night. There was no relief for the Bears, who lost not only the game, but also star wide receiver Brandon Marshall, who was taken away from Soldier Field in an ambulance after suffering an injury to his ribs in the first half, though he tweeted later that he was OK. Murray, the NFL's leading rusher, followed last year's 146-yard effort against the Bears with 179 yards and a touchdown on 32 carries and added 49 yards on nine catches. Tony Romo had three touchdown passes -- two to Cole Beasley -- and earned his eighth career win in Thursday games as he and the Cowboys bounced back from a 33-10 loss to NFC East rival Philadelphia by winning in Chicago for the first time since 2007. It's on the road where the Cowboys (9-4) have thrived this season, going 6-0. That mark will be put to the test next Sunday when they play in Philly with first place in the division on the line. Matt Forte and Jay Cutler rushed for touchdowns in the fourth quarter -- Cutler after an onside kick, cutting a 25-point Dallas lead to 10. But the Bears (5-8) lost for the second week in a row after falling in Detroit on Thanksgiving.