NFL roundup

New Orleans tight end Jimmy Graham (80) pulls in this pass while Atlanta's William Moore defends on Sunday. Graham caught a pair of touchdown passes as the Saints handed Atlanta its first loss 31-27.
New Orleans tight end Jimmy Graham (80) pulls in this pass while Atlanta's William Moore defends on Sunday. Graham caught a pair of touchdown passes as the Saints handed Atlanta its first loss 31-27. Bill Feig/AP Photo

Saints 31, Falcons 27

Jimmy Graham caught seven passes for a career-best 146 yards and two touchdowns, cornerback Jabari Greer made a diving, touchdown-saving pass breakup on a late fourth-down play, and the New Orleans Saints held on to hand the Atlanta Falcons their first loss, 31-27 on Sunday.

Graham and his Atlanta counterpart, veteran tight end Tony Gonzalez, both were superb in a game that showcased all the intensity and drama of one of the NFL's most passionate and longstanding rivalries

Gonzalez finished with 11 catches for 122 yards and two scores for Atlanta (8-1), and in the process became the first tight end to catch 100 touchdown passes.

Brees threw for 298 yards and three TDs as the Saints (4-5) won for the fourth time in five games, keeping alive hope of getting back into the wild card race after an 0-4 start.

49ers 24, Rams 24 (OT, tie)

San Francisco and St. Louis played the NFL's first tie game in four years as kickers from both teams missed overtime field goals in Sunday's 24-24 outcome.

Greg Zuerlein kicked a 53-yarder, but the Rams were penalized 5 yards for delay of game. He tried again from 58 as coach Jeff Fisher played for the win, and missed wide right with 2:42 left in OT.

San Francisco's David Akers missed wide left on a 41-yard attempt that could have sealed it for the 49ers (6-2-1), who lost quarterback Alex Smith to a first-half concussion.

And just when it seemed the 49ers - and Akers' typically reliable left leg - would have one more chance to win it, San Francisco linebacker Patrick Willis was flagged for holding Lance Kendricks on third down. That extended St. Louis' last drive, a costly mistake in a long list of them on an uncharacteristically sloppy day by coach Jim Harbaugh's team.

Akers booted a tying 33-yarder with 3 seconds left in regulation after Sam Bradford threw a 2-yard touchdown pass to Austin Pettis with 1:09 remaining. The Rams are 3-5-1.

Cowboys 38, Eagles 23

Tony Romo threw a pair of touchdowns, Dwayne Harris had a 78-yard punt return for a score and Brandon Carr returned an interception 47 yards for a TD.

The Cowboys improved to 4-5, and are second in the NFC East, 1.5 games behind the New York Giants.

The Eagles (3-6) lost Michael Vick to a concussion after consecutive bruising hits in the second quarter and have lost five straight games under coach Andy Reid for the first time in his 14 seasons.

Nick Foles filled in for Vick and briefly rallied the Eagles until the Cowboys started showing some touchdown versatility. Romo hit Dez Bryant on a 30-yard pass on the final play of the third quarter, and Harris and Carr scored their TDs in the fourth quarter.

Broncos 36, Panthers 14

Peyton Manning made sure John Fox's return to Carolina was a successful one, throwing for 301 yards and a touchdown.

Manning threw his 420th touchdown pass to move into a tie for second place on the NFL's all-time list with Dan Marino. He trails only Brett Favre (508).

Manning had plenty of help from his teammates.

Von Miller harassed Cam Newton all day and Trindon Holliday returned a punt 76 yards for a touchdown as the Broncos (6-3) won for the fifth time in six weeks. The Broncos sacked Newton seven times, including once for a safety, and Miller pressured him into an interception Tony Carter returned 40 yards for a score.

Fox, who coached the Panthers for nine seasons, downplayed his return all week, but celebrated with a few fist pumps Sunday.

Vikings 34, Lions 24

Adrian Peterson raced 61 yards for the game-sealing touchdown midway through the fourth quarter, padding his NFL rushing lead with 171 yards on 27 carries for Minnesota.

Peterson had 120 yards in the final 15 minutes, 10.5 months after reconstructive surgery on his left knee. Ponder bounced back from a rough game with 221 yards and two touchdowns on 24-for-32 passing for the Vikings (6-4).

Calvin Johnson had 207 yards on 12 catches, including a touchdown that brought the Lions (4-5) a little closer with 1:53 left. But Johnson's lost fumble near midfield on the previous possession put Vikings rookie Blair Walsh in position for his fourth field goal.

Buccaneers 34, Chargers 24

Josh Freeman threw two touchdown passes and the surging Buccaneers scored on a blocked punt and Leonard Johnson's 83-yard interception.

Freeman has thrown for 13 TDs with one interception in his past five games, helping the Bucs (5-4) win four times to climb back over .500 following a 1-3 start.

Rivers threw for 337 yards and three touchdowns for San Diego. He was intercepted twice in the fourth quarter to ruin any chance of the Chargers (4-5) coming from behind.

Ravens 55, Raiders 20

Joe Flacco threw for 341 yards and three touchdowns, and Baltimore set a club record for points.

The Ravens (7-2) scored on six of their first seven possessions against the struggling Raiders (3-6), who have yielded at least 40 points in two straight games for the first time since 1962. The 55 points tied an Oakland record for points allowed, a mark set in 1961 and matched in 1981.

Baltimore led 27-10 at halftime. In the third quarter, Flacco threw touchdown passes of 47 and 20 yards to Torrey Smith, and holder Sam Koch scored on a fake field goal in the third quarter to make it 48-17.

In the fourth quarter, Jacoby Jones took a kickoff 105 yards for 55-20 lead.

Titans 37, Dolphins 3

Colin McCarthy returned an interception 49 yards for a touchdown, and four takeaways helped Tennessee rout Miami.

The Titans came into the game on pace to set an NFL record for points allowed in a season, but they stymied Miami by intercepting Ryan Tannehill three times and recovering a Reggie Bush fumble to set up a touchdown.

Tennessee (4-6) rebounded from a 51-20 loss a week ago against the Bears that prompted owner Bud Adams to put the organization on notice. Last week the Titans trailed 28-2 after one quarter; this week they led 21-0 after 16 minutes.

Hide Comments

READER COMMENTS

Loading comments...
Hide Comments