The early games for Week 3 were heavy on upsets and overtime thrillers. Here’s a quick tour around the league.
49ers 14, Vikings 24
The Vikings turned in the upset of the week as they took down the 49ers, who had previously beaten the Packers and Lions. Adrian Peterson looked solid, rushing for 86 yards on 25 carries and Christian Ponder finished 21 of 35 for 198 yards with 2 touchdown passes, both of them to second year tight end Kyle Rudolph. Both teams are now 2-1.
Bengals 38, Redskins 31
The Bengals and Andy Dalton outgunned the Redskins and Robert Griffin III to take the win and improve to 2-1, while the Redskins fall to 1-2. Dalton was 19 of 27 for 328 yards with 3 TDs and 1 INT, but wasn’t even involved in the biggest Bengals passing play of the day. Rookie WR Mohamed Sanu completed a 73 yard touchdown pass to A.J. Green who had a colossal 9 catches for 183 yards and the 1 TD.
Lions 41, Titans 44 OT
The Titans won the thriller of the day, as the two teams went to overtime on a 46-yard Hail Mary pass from Shaun Hill (replacing an injured Matthew Stafford) to Titus Young. The two teams combined to score 46 points in the fourth quarter alone. Stafford and Hill combined for well over 400 yards passing, and Jake Locker had a solid day finishing 29 of 42 for 378 yards and 2 TDs, but it took more than the offenses scoring to carry the game. The Titans also scored on a 65 yard punt return by Tommie Campbell, a 105-yard kickoff return by Darius Reynaud and a 72 yard fumble recovery by Alterraun Verner.
Chiefs 27, Saints 24 OT
The Saints fell to 0-3 as they lost an overtime squeaker to the Chiefs, who got their first win of the season. Drew Brees was 20 of 36 for 240 yards and 3 TDs, along with 1 INT, but it wasn’t enough as Jamaal Charles racked up 233 rushing yards and 55 receiving yards for the Chiefs in a stellar performance.
Jets 23, Dolphins 20 OT
The Jets pulled out an overtime win over the Dolphins after Dolphins kicker Dan Carpenter hit a 41-yard field goal with 21 seconds left to force the game to overtime. Mark Sanchez had over 300 yards passing, but completed less than half his passes and threw 2 INTs, finishing 21 of 45 for 306 yards with 1 TD. Santonio Holmes turned in a standout performance finishing with 9 receptions for 147 yards.
Bills 24, Browns 14
The Bills jumped out to an early 14-0 lead on two Ryan Fitzpatrick touchdown passes in the first quarter, to T.J. Graham and C.J. Spiller and never looked back. Fitzpatrick finished with 208 yards passing and 3 TDs while for the Browns, Brandon Weeden threw 2 INTs and Trent Richardson had only 27 yards rushing on 12 carries.
Jaguars 22, Colts 17
The Jacksonville Jaguars got their first win of the season by victimizing the Colts, leaving both teams at 1-2. Maurice Jones-Drew led the Jags with 177 yards rushing and 1 TD, and Blaine Gabbert was unspectacular finishing 10 of 21 for 155 yards and 1 TD. Andrew Luck had a respectable game as he carried the bulk of the load, finishing 22 of 46 for 313 yards with 2 TDs and 1 INT.
Cowboys 16, Bucs 10
The Cowboys held off the Bucs to improve to 2-1 as the Bucs offense turned in one of the most anemic performances of the weekend. Josh Freeman finished 10 of 28 for 110 yards with 1 TD and 1 INT, and most of that came on the Bucs final drive.
Rams 6, Bears 23
The Bears defense dominated the Rams, as Major Wright scored on a 45-yard interception return for a touchdown, which would have been enough to beat the Rams without any help from the offense. The Bears held the rams to 160 yards of total offense and won the turnover battle 2-1.
Falcons 27, Chargers 3
The Falcons dominated the Chargers from the outset, holding San Diego to 280 yards of total offense, and only 5 of 11 on third downs. Matt Ryan went 30 of 40 for 275 yards with 3 TDs, and 1 INT, with TD passes to Tony Gonzalez, Julio Jones and Jacquizz Rodgers.
Eagles 6, Cardinals 27
The luck finally ran out on the Eagles, after winning their first two games by 1 point each despite turning the ball over each game. The lost the turnover battle once again (3-0), with two Michael Vick fumbles and one fumble by Demaris Johnson. Even putting the fumbles aside, Vick (17 of 37 for 217) was outplayed by Kevin Kolb who efficiently went 17 of 24 for 222 yards with 2 TDs, for a QB efficiency of 127.4.
Texans 31, Broncos 25
Peyton Manning and the Broncos fall to 1-2, while the Texans continued rolling to 3-0 and look like one of the top contenders in the league. Schaub was efficient, finishing 17 for 30 for 290 yards with 4 TDs and 1 INT, and Arian Foster had 105 yards on 25 carries. Manning was far less efficient, throwing the ball 52 times, completing 26 for 330 yards and 2 TDs in the loss, but both of Manning’s TDs came in a late fourth quarter rally after dropping behind 31-11 by the end of the third.
Steelers 31, Raiders 34
The Steelers drop to 1-2 as the Raiders get their first win of the season with a come from behind rally in the fourth quarter. Ben Roethlisberger was outstanding, completing 36 of 49 for 384 yards and 4 TDs with no picks, including 9 completions for 123 yards to Mike Wallace, but it wasn’t enough. The Steelers entered the fourth quarter with a 31-21 lead only to see the Raiders score 13 unanswered points in the fourth, winning with a 43-yard field goal by Sebastian Janikowski as time expired.
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