NFL Recap of Sunday's Week 2 Action

By: Associated Press Email
By: Associated Press Email

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NFL Week 2 Recap

ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. (AP) -- An inconsistent offense coupled with a defense that is surrendering plenty of points has the Kansas City Chiefs already searching for answers.
The Chiefs were dealt their second straight defeat, falling 35-17 to the Buffalo Bills on Sunday. The loss comes on the heels of last week's 40-24 drubbing against the Atlanta Falcons, and puts Kansas City in a familiar position.
The Chiefs opened a season 0-2 for the sixth time in seven years, which includes last season when they opened with a 41-7 home loss to Buffalo.
"It's something that we have to find out what it is," cornerback Brandon Flowers said. "We have to get together as a team and find out what's going on, because I feel we have the players to go out there and make it happen."
The Chiefs weren't able to make anything happen against C.J. Spiller and the Bills. Spiller, starting in place of the injured Fred Jackson, scored twice and finished with 123 yards rushing a week after Buffalo was routed in its opener against the New York Jets.
It was the same-old sloppiness by a Chiefs team that fizzled against the Falcons.
"We didn't play well on either side of the ball, or any part of our team," Chiefs quarterback Matt Cassel said. "We're disappointed, and we know we have to play better. You have to eliminate the inconsistency and sustain drives to put ourselves in better position to be successful."
Cassel finished 23 of 42 for 301 yards with two touchdowns and an interception, with much of that production coming after the Bills had built a 35-3 lead. Dwayne Bowe scored both touchdowns on 33- and 2-yard catches in the final seven minutes.
The Chiefs' running attack sputtered. Peyton Hillis had 66 yards rushing, and Jamaal Charles just 3 yards on six carries. Charles came in having accumulated 398 yards rushing in his last four meetings with the Bills.
Kansas City managed just four first downs and 71 yards on its first five possessions. The Chiefs then came up empty on their sixth possession, and after Cassel marched them 77 yards on eight plays. Facing second-and-goal at the 1 and down 21-0 with less than a minute to go in the first half, Hillis took the handoff, but was tripped up immediately by linebacker Nick Barnett and then lost control of the ball as he fell forward.
Safety Bryan Scott jumped over a pile of players to get control of the ball before Hillis could recover.
"It was very devastating for me and the team," Hillis said. "I put the blame right on myself. It was a pretty deflating moment for the offense overall."
Spiller also had 47 yards receiving, and picked up where he left off last week, when he took over for Jackson and enjoyed a career-best 169 yards rushing.
The Bills' high-priced Mario Williams-led defense then did the rest. Kyle Williams had two of the team's five sacks, and Buffalo forced three turnovers.
That included Mario Williams recovering Cassel's fumble, which led to Scott Chandler's 10-yard touchdown catch in a first half during which the Bills took control.
Buffalo quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick shrugged off last week's three-interception outing by going 10 of 19 for 178 yards and two touchdowns, including a 49-yarder to Stevie Johnson. And Buffalo's special teams contributed: Leodis McKelvin returned a punt 88 yards to make it 35-3 with 3:46 left in the third quarter.
The Chiefs were so thoroughly outplayed on both sides of the ball in the first half that Spiller's 139 yards from scrimmage nearly matched Kansas City's 148 yards net offense.
"It was another disappointing loss," Chiefs coach Romeo Crennel said. "We didn't play well enough in any phase of the game, and didn't coach well enough. It's disappointing because I thought we prepared well and had the right mindset coming in. But then we come here and couldn't do anything right."
The Chiefs defense struggled despite welcoming back two regulars. Star pass-rushing linebacker Tamba Hali returned after serving an NFL-imposed one-game suspension for violating the league's substance abuse policy, and Flowers returned after missing the opener with a foot injury.
Kansas City did lose tight end Kevin Boss to a head injury in the second quarter. After making a catch over the middle, Boss stumbled backward and hit the back of his head on the turf at the same time safety Da'Norris Searcy struck him on the side of the helmet with his forearm.
Boss appeared woozy as he walked off to the sideline. Searcy was penalized for a blow to the head.
Notes: Spiller became the fourth Bills player to reach 100 yards in the first two games of a season, joining Jackson, Thurman Thomas and O.J. Simpson, who did that twice. ... Chiefs CB Javier Arenas hurt his neck and did not return. ... McKelvin's TD return was the second of his career, and the second-longest in team history, 3 yards short of the record set by Keith Moody in 1977.

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SAN FRANCISCO (AP) -- San Francisco's stingy defense denied Matthew Stafford another milestone, Vernon Davis caught touchdown passes of 21 and 23 yards from Alex Smith, and the 49ers beat the Detroit Lions 27-19 on Sunday night in a September showdown of NFC powers.

Smith completed 20 of 31 throws for 226 yards and extended his franchise-record streak of passes without an interception to 216, leading the NFC West favorite Niners (2-0) to their ninth straight win in the series. Smith took a hard hand to the helmet from John Wendling late and bloodied his nose.

The 49ers ran their home winning streak against the Lions (1-1) to 12 -- and there was no heated greeting afterward this time. Coaches Jim Harbaugh and Jim Schwartz met before the game with a friendly hello and handshake.

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SAN DIEGO (AP) -- Tight end Dante Rosario had three touchdown catches for the first time in his NFL career and San Diego's defense harassed Jake Locker all afternoon as the Chargers beat the Tennessee Titans for the ninth straight time, 38-10 Sunday.
Before the game, the Chargers (2-0) retired Junior Seau's No. 55. Seau, the hard-hitting, first-pumping leader of the Chargers for 13 seasons, committed suicide May 2.
With Antonio Gates inactive due to sore ribs, the Chargers turned to Rosario. He responded with TD catches of 11, 4 and 15 yards from Philip Rivers. He had only five career scoring catches coming in, including a game-winner against San Diego in the 2008 season opener while with Carolina.
San Diego's winning streak against the Titans (0-2) dates to 1993, when the franchise was still the Houston Oilers.
Rivers was 24 of 32 for 284 yards. Malcom Floyd had six catches for 109 yards and Rosario four catches for 48 yards.

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PITTSBURGH (AP) -- Ben Roethlisberger passed for 275 yards and two touchdowns and the Pittsburgh Steelers smothered the New York Jets in the second half of a 27-10 victory on Sunday.
Roethlisberger completed 24 of 31 passes. He hit Heath Miller for a 1-yard score to give the Steelers (1-1) the lead late in the first half, then found Mike Wallace for a 37-yard strike early in the third quarter to break the game open.
Isaac Redman added a late 2-yard touchdown run for Pittsburgh, which had little trouble avoiding its first 0-2 start in a decade.
The Jets (1-1) did little offensively after a pair of early scoring drives. Mark Sanchez passed for 138 yards and a touchdown, but New York hardly looked like the offensive juggernaut that piled up points in a 48-28 opening-week blowout win over Buffalo.

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EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. (AP) -- Eli Manning threw for 510 yards, and Andre Brown's 2-yard run with 31 seconds left lifted the New York Giants from a 14-point deficit to a wild 41-34 victory Sunday over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
Manning was the first-half goat and the second-half star in the second-best passing day in team history. His three first-half interceptions staked the Bucs (1-1) to an 11-point lead, and his monster second half helped the Super Bowl champions avoid a dreaded 0-2 start.
Manning threw touchdowns of 23 yards to Hakeem Nicks, 80 to Victor Cruz and 33 to Martellus Bennett with 3:59 to play to give New York a 34-27 lead.
Josh Freeman tied the game with a 41-yard pass to Mike Williams, but Manning drove New York 80 yards in four plays.

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FOXBOROUGH, Mass. (AP) -- Backup quarterback Kevin Kolb threw for one touchdown and ran for another, Stephen Gostkowski missed a potential winning field goal in the final seconds, and the Arizona Cardinals upset the New England Patriots 20-18 on Sunday.
The Patriots took over when Vince Wilfork recovered a fumble at the Cardinals 30-yard line with 1:01 left. A 30-yard run into the end zone by Danny Woodhead was nullified by a holding penalty against Rob Gronkowski. New England then moved to the 24 before Tom Brady spiked the ball to stop the clock with six seconds remaining.
But Gostkowski, who had made his other four field goal attempts, sent a 42-yard try wide to the left.
The Cardinals (2-0) won behind Kolb, filling in for John Skelton, who missed the game with a sprained right ankle. The Patriots (1-1) lost tight end Aaron Hernandez to an ankle injury in the first quarter.

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INDIANAPOLIS (AP) -- Adam Vinatieri made a 53-yard field goal with 8 seconds left Sunday to give Andrew Luck and Indianapolis a 23-20 victory over Minnesota.
Luck and new Colts coach Chuck Pagano both picked up their first career victories in their home opener.
Minnesota (1-1) rallied from a two-touchdown deficit in the final 5 1/2 minutes, tying the score on a 6-yard TD pass from Christian Ponder to Kyle Rudolph with 31 seconds left.
But that was too much time for Luck, who had thrown for two touchdowns. He started with back-to-back 20-yard completions, then drew the Vikings offside before spiking the ball with 12 seconds to go. Vinatieri, the best clutch kicker in NFL history, knocked the 53-yarder through the uprights to win it.
Luck finished 20 of 31 for 224 yards.

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CINCINNATI (AP) -- Adam "Pacman" Jones returned Cleveland's first punt 81 yards for a touchdown Sunday, and Andy Dalton matched his career high with three touchdown passes, leading the Cincinnati Bengals to a 34-27 victory in their one-sided rivalry.
The Bengals (1-1) have won 13 of the last 16 against the Browns (0-2), who got impressive games from their rookie quarterback and running back but still couldn't get a win.
Jones put the Bengals ahead to stay with his fifth career punt return for a touchdown. Dalton threw three TD passes for the second time in his career, including a short reception that Andrew Hawkins turned into a 50-yard score in the fourth quarter.
Cleveland quarterback Brandon Weeden rebounded from one of the worst debuts in NFL history by throwing for two touchdowns. Trent Richardson became the first Browns rookie to run for 100 yards and score on a run and a pass.

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MIAMI (AP) -- Reggie Bush ran for 172 yards and two touchdowns Sunday, and the Miami Dolphins won a home opener for the first time since 2005 by beating the Oakland Raiders 35-13.
Ryan Tannehill threw his first NFL touchdown pass, ran for another and avoided any turnovers after tossing three interceptions in his pro debut a week earlier.
The Dolphins improved to 1-1, and Joe Philbin earned a sideline drenching for his first victory as a head coach. The Raiders, under new coach Dennis Allen, are 0-2 for the first time since 2007.
Bush broke four tackles on a 23-yard touchdown run that put Miami ahead to stay in the third quarter. After Miami forced a punt, Bush struck again, this time on a 65-yard scoring run.

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CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) -- Cam Newton threw for 253 yards and ran for a career-high 71 yards as the Carolina Panthers defeated New Orleans 35-27 on Sunday to hand the Saints their first 0-2 start since 2007.
One week after tying a franchise low with 10 yards rushing in a 16-10 loss to Tampa Bay, the Panthers rediscovered their running game against a porous Saints defense. The Panthers ran for 219 yards and Newton, DeAngelo Williams and Mike Tolbert all scored on short touchdown runs. Steve Smith overcame a sore knee to finish with 104 yards receiving -- the 39th 100-yard receiving game of his career -- and Jonathan Stewart hauled in a 17-yard touchdown reception for the Panthers (1-1).
Drew Brees had won his previous five starts against Carolina. He threw for 325 yards but was intercepted twice, including once by Charles Godfrey, who returned it 9 yards for a touchdown.

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PHILADELPHIA (AP) -- Michael Vick scored on a 1-yard TD run with 1:55 left, helping the Philadelphia Eagles overcome a slew of turnovers to beat the Baltimore Ravens 24-23 on Sunday.
Rookie kicker Justin Tucker made field goals of 56, 51 and 48 yards for the Ravens, but Joe Flacco couldn't get Baltimore (1-1) in his range in the final minute.
Flacco overthrew Ray Rice on fourth-and-1 from the Ravens 46, and the Eagles ran out the clock.
Vick threw four interceptions at Cleveland last week, but rallied the Eagles (2-0) to a 17-16 win.
He did it again, though the replacement officials almost made a costly mistake.
Down 23-17, the Eagles started at their 20 with 4:43 left. Vick threw passes of 24 and 13 yards to Brent Celek. A 19-yard pass to Clay Harbor coupled with a roughing-the-passer penalty put the ball at the 3.
Vick then threw incomplete as he was being hit by Haloti Ngata, but the play was ruled a fumble. It was recovered by the Ravens, but replay overturned the turnover and Vick scored on the next play.

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SEATTLE (AP) -- Marshawn Lynch ran for 122 yards and a 3-yard touchdown in the fourth quarter, Seattle's special teams came up with two huge first-quarter plays that led to 10 points, and the Seahawks beat the Dallas Cowboys 27-7 on Sunday.
Michael Robinson forced Felix Jones to fumble on the opening kickoff that led to a short field goal, and Malcolm Smith blocked Chris Jones' punt which Jeron Johnson returned for a touchdown to give Seattle (1-1) a 10-0 lead in less than 5 minutes.
Rookie Russell Wilson threw for 151 yards and directed a 90-yard scoring drive in the third quarter capped by a 22-yard touchdown strike to Anthony McCoy to give Seattle a 20-7 lead.
Tony Romo threw a 22-yard TD to Miles Austin in the second quarter, but that was the only sustained drive the Cowboys (1-1) could mount on the Seahawks stout defense.

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JACKSONVILLE, Fla. (AP) -- Arian Foster ran for 110 yards and a touchdown, Ben Tate added 74 yards and two scores and the Texans dominated from the opening kickoff in a 27-7 win at Jacksonville on Sunday.
The Texans improved to 2-0 for the third consecutive season by winning their fourth in a row against the AFC South rival Jaguars, who started 0-2 for the third time in the last five years.
Jacksonville, which has never had a winning record after dropping its first two games, was far from competitive in the latest meeting.
The Texans gained 242 yards in the first half while building a 17-0 lead. Foster ran for 69 yards and a score. Tate added 49 and a touchdown. Matt Schaub, using mostly short throws, picked apart Jacksonville's defense.
The Jaguars were even worse on offense, finishing with a franchise-low 117 yards.

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ST. LOUIS (AP) -- St. Louis Rams running back Steven Jackson sat out most of the final three quarters of Sunday's victory over the Washington Redskins with a groin strain that worsened on his last few carries.
Jackson didn't play after drawing an unsportsmanlike conduct penalty for spiking the ball in protest after he was ruled short of the goal line on a third down carry from the 1.
Coach Jeff Fisher said Jackson was held out because of the injury, not because he was being disciplined.
The Rams went with rookie Daryl Richardson while Jackson stood on the sideline, helmet in hand. During the game, a team spokesman said Jackson was fine.
One play before the penalty, referees ruled that Jackson lost a fumble at the 1. The call was reversed when the Rams challenged.
Jackson had 58 yards on nine carries. He's the Rams' career rushing leader and entered the year with seven consecutive 1,000-yard seasons.

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JACKSONVILLE, Fla. (AP) -- Jacksonville Jaguars quarterback Blaine Gabbert has a hamstring injury that could prevent him from playing next week at Indianapolis.
Gabbert injured his left hamstring in the first half against Houston. He played the third quarter and one series in the fourth before leaving the game.
Gabbert completed 7 of 19 passes for 53 yards -- his fewest passing yards as a starter -- in Sunday's 27-7 loss to the Texans.
Coach Mike Mularkey says Gabbert "has a strain in the back of his leg" and that he pulled him as a precaution since the game was out of hand.
Mularkey adds that he's unsure if Gabbert will be able to play against the Colts.
Chad Henne replaced Gabbert and completed both of his passes before fumbling a snap.


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