x Abu Dhabi, UAEFriday 19 January 2018

Titans remain undefeated

The Tennessee Titans remain the only undefeated franchise in the NFL thanks to a Rob Bironas overtime field goal.

Rob Bironas, right, celebrates after he slots over his 47-yard field goal in overtime against the Green Bay Packers.
Rob Bironas, right, celebrates after he slots over his 47-yard field goal in overtime against the Green Bay Packers.

NASHVILLE // Rob Bironas made amends for his earlier miss in overtime as he kicked a 41-yard field goal to keep the Tennessee Titans as the NFL's last unbeaten team. Bironas had a chance to win the game in regular time but struck a 47-yard effort off the upright forcing the game to continue. The Titans, who now stand at 8-0 (win/loss record), won the toss and drove 55 yards in ten plays to give Bironas another chance, helping Tennessee match a franchise record with their 11th straight regular-season victory. The Packers (4-4) had levelled the affair with over five minutes to go when Mason Crosby shot over his third field goal from 38-yards.

At Seattle, Donovan McNabb rebounded from early problems to complete 28 out of 43 passes for 349 yards resulting in two touchdowns. Brent Celek, playing because LJ Smith was out with a concussion, set an Eagles record for yards receiving by a tight end in a regular season game, gained 131 yards from six receptions.

At Orchard Park, Abram Elam, starting in place of the injured safety Eric Smith, returned an interception thrown by Trent Edwards for a 92-yard touchdown, sparking New York's victory over the bumbling Buffalo. The Jets (5-3) have won four out of their last five fixtures and have caught the Bills in the AFC East division standings. Buffalo (5-3) have lost all the momentum they had generated following a four win start to the season. Brett Favre was not exactly perfect a week after he threw three interceptions before securing a 28-24 win over Kansas City. Against Buffalo, he forced a throw to the left sideline and was intercepted by Jabari Greer. Greer returned it 42 yards for a touchdown that cut the Jets' lead to 23-17 with under 11 minutes left. Favre responded by efficiently producing a 14-play, 65-yard drive that ate up nearly nine minutes and ended with Jay Feely hitting a 31-yard field goal.

In Chicago, Rex Grossman came off the bench to replace the injured quarterback Kyle Orton and scored the winning touchdown, helping Chicago rally from a ten-point deficit for a victory over the winless Detroit. Matt Forte ran 126 yards for the Bears (5-3), who lost Orton to an ankle injury and safety Mike Brown to a calf problem late in the first half. Forte was instrumental in the key drive that led to Grossman's touchdown. He ran for 40 of Chicago's 55 yards including his 19-yard dash put the ball on the one yard line. Grossman plunged from the quarterback slot to seal the win. Daunte Culpepper is reportedly about to sign with Detroit (0-8), Dan Orlovsky completed 28 out of 47 passes for 292 yards and two touchdowns, but threw two interceptions.

At Kansas City, Jeff Garcia's 24-yard touchdown pass and a two-point conversion toss tied the game with 19 seconds left. Then Matt Bryant's 33-yard field goal in overtime gave Tampa Bay a win after they trailed by 21. The Chiefs (1-7) never touched the ball in overtime as Garcia passed to Michael Clayton for 29 yards on the first play and smartly moved Tampa Bay (6-3) down the field. Adding to the dismay of the Chiefs was the fact that Bryant was wide right on a 38-yard try on third down in the overtime drive. But a false start penalty on Jeremy Trueblood cancelled the play.

In Minneapolis, the Minnesota Vikings forced three turnovers, got three touchdown passes from Gus Frerotte and shut down Houston's Andre Johnson. Minnesota (4-4) returned from their free week fully recharged. Madieu Williams intercepted Sage Rosenfels in the end zone in the third quarter and Antoine Winfield picked off Matt Schaub at the Vikings five-yard line before Houston's starting quarterback was sidelined at half-time by an injury to his left knee. Schaub also lost a fumble that led to a 49-yard scoring toss on third down from Frerotte to Bernard Berrian that stretched the lead to 21-7. The Texans (3-5) missed their chance to win four straight games for the first time in the franchise's six-year history.

At St Louis, Kurt Warner and the Cardinals scored 24 points in the second quarter to pick up a win in their former home city. The Cardinals have won four in a row in St Louis, their home from 1960-87, and four straight over the Rams overall. Arizona (5-3) were in total command after scoring ten points on turnovers and adding a pair of long scoring plays for touchdowns by Tim Hightower and Jerheme Urban. Warner had his 45th 300-yard passing game, throwing for two touchdowns to beat the team he led to two Super Bowls from 1999-2001.

At Cleveland, Matt Stover booted three field goals and the linebacker Terrell Suggs returned an interception for 42 yards for a touchdown as Baltimore rallied for a win. Stover, who is ranked fifth in league scoring history, made field goals from 41, 32 and 22 yards for the Ravens (5-3), who trailed 27-13 in the third quarter before storming back by scoring 24 unanswered points to beat the Browns (3-5) for the second time this season.

In New Jersey, Eli Manning threw three touchdown passes and Brandon Jacobs rushed for a touchdown as the New York Giants dominated Dallas. The win was the fifth straight at home for the Giants (7-1) and it allowed the Super Bowl champions to open a three-game lead over the Cowboys (5-4) in the NFC East division.

In Denver, the Miami Dolphins bottled up Denver's ground game and intercepted Jay Cutler three times in a win over the befuddled Broncos. The Cornerback Will Allen returned the second of Cutler's mistakes for a 32 yards touchdown in the first quarter. Ronnie Brown rushed 20 times for 59 yards, including a two-yard dash into the end zone with three minutes left to seal it for the Dolphins (4-4). This was Denver's (4-4) fourth defeat in five games.

In Oakland, Matt Ryan threw a pair of first-half touchdown passes to Michael Jenkins as Atlanta shut out Oakland. In a six-year stretch of poor results, Al Davis' once-proud franchise might have reached a new low this week in front of a half-filled stadium of fans who began booing the Raiders (2-6) just minutes in. Oakland finished with just 77 offensive yards for their worst total since getting 58 in 1961 against the Chargers, when Davis was an assistant in San Diego. *AP