Oct 31, 2021; New Orleans, Louisiana, USA;  New Orleans Saints quarterback Trevor Siemian (15) passes there ball against Tampa Bay Buccaneers during the first half at Caesars Superdome. Mandatory Credit: Stephen Lew-USA TODAY Sports

Saints lose Jameis Winston but forge ahead to beat Buccaneers

Trevor Siemian threw a touchdown pass in place of the injured Jameis Winston and P.J. Williams made a clinching pick-six of Tom Brady as the host New Orleans Saints defeated the Tampa Bay Buccaneers 36-27 on Sunday.

Siemian replaced Winston in the second quarter, completed 16 of 29 for 159 yards and drove the Saints (5-2) 70 yards to Brian Johnson’s 23-yard field goal that gave them a 29-27 lead with 1:44 remaining.

On the second play of the ensuing possession Williams stepped in front of a Brady pass and ran 40 yards for a touchdown.

Brady, who threw a go-ahead 50-yard touchdown pass to Cyril Grayson with 5:44 left, completed 28 of 40 for 375 yards and four touchdowns with two interceptions as the Bucs (6-2) saw their lead over New Orleans in the NFC South slip to half a game.

Chris Godwin caught eight of Brady’s passes for 140 yards and a 12-yard touchdown that started the scoring in the first quarter.

Winston, a former Buc, completed six of 10 for 56 yards and a 16-yard touchdown to Tre’Quan Smith that tied the score at the end of the first quarter. Winston, who ran four times for 40 yards, injured a knee while scrambling and being tackled awkwardly by Tampa Bay linebacker Devin White, who was penalized for a horse-collar tackle.

Taysom Hill, New Orleans’ No. 2 quarterback, was unavailable as he remains in concussion protocol.

The score was tied at seven when Winston left, but Siemian soon drove the Saints to Johnson’s 23-yard field goal and threw a one-yard touchdown pass to fullback Alex Armah for a 16-7 halftime lead.

On the first possession of the third quarter, Alvin Kamara ran one yard for a touchdown on fourth down, pushing the Saints’ lead to 23-7.

Brady responded with a seven-yard touchdown pass to Giovani Bernard and a 41-yarder to Mike Evans on consecutive possessions, cutting the lead to 23-21 at the end of the third quarter.

Johnson’s 35-yard field goal gave New Orleans a 26-21 lead with 8:31 remaining.

–Field Level Media

Oct 31, 2021; Inglewood, California, USA; Los Angeles Chargers defensive tackle Jerry Tillery (99) gestures towards the New England Patriots offense after a play in the first half at SoFi Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Orlando Ramirez-USA TODAY Sports

Adrian Phillips’ pick-six helps Patriots edge Chargers

Adrian Phillips intercepted Chargers quarterback Justin Herbert twice, including a 26-yard pick-six in the fourth quarter that put the New England Patriots ahead for good in a 27-24 win at Los Angeles on Sunday.

Phillips, who spent his first six NFL seasons with the Chargers, dove to pick off Herbert on a 3rd-and-10 pass intended for Jared Cook, who never turned around for the pass. Phillips popped up and scrambled into the end zone untouched for a TD with 10:11 remaining.

Mac Jones found Jakobi Meyers for a two-point conversion to put New England ahead 24-17. The Patriots capped a nearly seven-minute drive later in the quarter with a 30-yard field goal by Nick Folk with 2:19 remaining to go up 27-17.

Herbert connected with Joshua Palmer on a 24-yard desperation TD with 40 seconds to play, but the Chargers failed to recover the ensuing onside kick.

Jones finished 18-of-35 passing for 218 yards, and Damien Harris rushed for 80 yards and a touchdown on 23 carries for New England (4-4), which has won back-to-back games and three of its past four to get back to .500.

Herbert was 18-of-35 passing for 223 yards, two touchdowns and two interceptions. Austin Ekeler rushed 11 times for 64 yards and a touchdown for Los Angeles (4-3), which suffered its second straight loss.

With the Chargers up 14-13 at halftime, the teams swapped field goals in the third quarter. Folk made a 48-yarder with 3:39 left before Los Angeles’ Dustin Hopkins kicked a 48-yarder with 39 seconds left.

Los Angeles scored on the game’s opening drive as Ekeler’s 5-yard TD run capped an eight-play, 75-yard series to make it 7-0. New England answered with a 10-play, 75-yard drive to make the score 7-7 after Damien Harris’ 1-yard scoring run.

Herbert’s 5-yard touchdown pass to Keenan Allen restored the lead for Los Angeles at 14-7 with 12:35 to play in the second quarter. Folk kicked a 24-yard field goal with 3:29 on the clock and added a 48-yarder with 10 seconds left for the Patriots as they trailed 14-13 at halftime.

–Field Level Media

Oct 31, 2021; Denver, Colorado, USA; Washington Football Team quarterback Taylor Heinicke (4) is sacked by Denver Broncos defensive end Shelby Harris (96) and defensive end Dre'Mont Jones (93) as guard Wes Schweitzer (71) and center Chase Roullier (73) and linebacker Baron Browning (56) defend in the second quarter at Empower Field at Mile High. Mandatory Credit: Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports

Melvin Gordon helps Broncos defeat Washington Football Team

Melvin Gordon III rushed for 47 yards and scored two touchdowns, Teddy Bridgewater was 19-for-26 passing for 213 yards and a score, and the host Denver Broncos beat the Washington Football Team 17-10 on Sunday.

Tim Patrick had three receptions for 64 yards and Justin Simmons had two interceptions for Denver (4-4), which snapped a four-game losing streak.

Taylor Heinicke was 25-for-39 passing for 272 yards, one touchdown and two interceptions, J.D. McKissic had eight receptions for 83 yards and DeAndre Carter caught a touchdown pass for the Washington Football Team (2-6), which dropped its fourth straight game.

Gordon broke a 10-10 tie when he ran it in from seven yards out with 4:28 left. Washington drove to the Broncos’ 8-yard line but eventually an interception in the end zone by Simmons stopped the drive.

Gordon fumbled with 21 seconds left, giving Washington another shot from the Broncos’ 24 but it couldn’t capitalize.

Washington moved to the Denver 27 on its second possession of the game before settling for a field goal try. However, Shelby Harris blocked Chris Blewitt’s 45-yard attempt to keep Washington off the board.

The Broncos used seven plays to get to the Football Team’s 27, and Brandon McManus drilled a 45-yarder to give Denver a 3-0 lead early in the second quarter.

Washington answered with Blewitt’s field goal from 52 yards to tie it, but the Broncos again responded. Bridgewater hit tight end Albert Okwuegbunam twice on chunk plays to get down to Washington’s 15 before throwing a touchdown pass to Gordon to make it 10-3 with 1:11 left in the half.

Neither team had success in the second half but Washington finally broke through when it got the ball at its 6-yard line with 7:02 left in the third quarter.

Washington moved the ball to its 39 and on a third-and-two, Heinicke hit Adam Humphries down the sideline for 23 yards and a first down in Denver territory. Three plays later, Heinicke hit Carter on a 20-yard TD pass to tie it up with 38 seconds remaining in the period.

Later, McManus missed a 53-yard field goal attempt and then the Broncos blocked another Blewitt try, this one from 47 yards.

–Field Level Media

Oct 31, 2021; Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA; Dallas Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott (4) warms up before the game against the Minnesota Vikings at U.S. Bank Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jeffrey Becker-USA TODAY Sports

Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott (calf) ruled out vs. Vikings

Dallas Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott will miss Sunday night’s game against the Minnesota Vikings due to his calf injury.

Prescott tested his strained right calf prior to Sunday’s contest in Minneapolis and the Cowboys decided he wasn’t physically fit to play.

Team trainer Britt Brown and coach Mike McCarthy apparently relayed the decision when they huddled with Prescott on the field.

Cooper Rush will make his first career start in place of Prescott. The 27-year-old has thrown three career passes, all in 2017.

Prescott was listed as questionable for the contest but wanted to go through the weekend to see if the calf improved.

Prescott sustained the calf strain in a Week 6 victory over the New England Patriots. The Cowboys followed with a bye week, but that wasn’t enough time to allow the injury to heal.

Not playing against the Vikings gives Prescott the chance to get the calf healthy prior to next Sunday’s game against the Denver Broncos.

Prescott has passed for 1,813 yards, 16 touchdowns and four interceptions this season.

Entering the week, the Cowboys led the NFL in both scoring offense (34.2 points per game) and total yardage (460.8).

Will Grier will be the Cowboys’ backup quarterback on Sunday. He was claimed by Dallas in early September after being released by the Carolina Panthers.

Grier, 26, started two games for the Panthers in 2019 and lost both. He passed for 228 yards and four interceptions without throwing a touchdown.

–Field Level Media

Oct 31, 2021; Seattle, Washington, USA; Seattle Seahawks wide receiver DK Metcalf (14) catches a touchdown pass against Jacksonville Jaguars cornerback Shaquill Griffin (26) during the second quarter at Lumen Field. Mandatory Credit: Joe Nicholson-USA TODAY Sports

Geno Smith, Seahawks roll past Jaguars to end losing streak

Geno Smith, filling in for the injured Russell Wilson, threw for two touchdowns and rushed for another as the Seattle Seahawks defeated the visiting Jacksonville Jaguars 31-7 Sunday afternoon.

Smith completed 20 of 24 passes for 195 yards as the Seahawks (3-5) snapped a three-game losing streak and won for the first time in four home games this season to gain some momentum heading into their bye week. Wilson, who had surgery on the middle finger of his right hand after being injured Oct. 7 against the Los Angeles Rams, is expected to return after the bye.

Seattle’s Tyler Lockett made 12 receptions for 142 yards and DK Metcalf added six catches for 43 yards and two touchdowns. Alex Collins rushed for a game-high 44 yards on 10 carries.

The Seahawks’ defense, which entered the game ranked worst in the NFL at 414.7 yards allowed per game, gave up 309, with about half of that coming in the fourth quarter after Seattle led 24-0.

The Jaguars (1-6), who snapped a 20-game losing streak with a 23-20 victory against Miami on Oct. 17 in London, avoided the shutout on rookie Trevor Lawrence’s 9-yard touchdown pass to Jamal Agnew with 1:49 remaining.

Seattle’s Travis Homer returned the ensuing onside kick 44 yards for a touchdown.

Lawrence was 32-of-54 passing for 238 yards with one touchdown and one interception. Carlos Hyde led the Jaguars in rushing with 32 yards on nine carries.

Smith completed his first 14 pass attempts, the most to start a game in the NFL this season (eclipsing the 12 by Green Bay’s Aaron Rodgers), in leading the Seahawks to a 17-0 halftime lead.

Smith’s lone incompletion of the first half came with 10 seconds remaining, when he threw the ball over the back of the end zone on third-and-goal from the 13-yard line to escape a sack. The play preserved a chance for Jason Myers’ 31-yard field goal that made it 17-0.

Smith scored on a 1-yard run on Seattle’s opening possession and threw a 16-yard touchdown pass to Metcalf in the second quarter.

Metcalf also made a 5-yard TD reception in the third quarter.

–Field Level Media

Oct 31, 2021; New Orleans, Louisiana, USA;   New Orleans Saints quarterback Jameis Winston (2) scrambles against Tampa Bay Buccaneers during the first half at Caesars Superdome. Mandatory Credit: Stephen Lew-USA TODAY Sports

Saints QB Jameis Winston (knee) carted to locker room vs. Bucs

New Orleans Saints quarterback Jameis Winston left Sunday’s game against the visiting Tampa Bay Buccaneers with a knee injury and was later ruled out for the game by the club.

Winston, a former Buc, was injured on a scramble in the second quarter when he was tackled awkwardly by Tampa Bay linebacker Devin White, who was penalized for a horse-collar tackle.

Winston had to be helped to the sideline after being unable to walk off by himself. He was then carted back to the locker room.

Trevor Siemian replaced Winston. Taysom Hill, New Orleans’ No. 2 quarterback, was unavailable as he remains in concussion protocol after being injured three weeks ago.

Winston had thrown a 16-yard touchdown to Tre’Quan Smith to tie the score at seven. Winston completed 6 of 10 passes for 56 yards and rushed four times for 40 yards before exiting.

Winston spent his first five NFL seasons with Tampa Bay. He is in his second campaign with the Saints.

–Field Level Media

Oct 31, 2021; Atlanta, Georgia, USA; Carolina Panthers quarterback Sam Darnold (14) is injured and leaves the game after being tackled by Atlanta Falcons linebacker Foyesade Oluokun (54) during the second half at Mercedes-Benz Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports

Panthers lose QB Sam Darnold (concussion) during win over Falcons

Carolina Panthers quarterback Sam Darnold is in concussion protocol after being knocked out of Sunday’s 19-13 victory over the Atlanta Falcons during the middle of the fourth quarter.

Darnold was injured on a scramble in which he gained 8 yards to the Atlanta 3-yard line and was tackled by Falcons linebacker Foyesade Oluokun.

He exited the game and was replaced by P.J. Walker.

Carolina coach Matt Rhule said he didn’t immediately know how long Darnold will be sidelined. He said the team will need to add another quarterback on the roster if Darnold’s absence is lengthy.

The Panthers (4-4) host the New England Patriots next Sunday.

Darnold, 24, completed 13 of 24 passes for 129 yards and rushed eight times for 66 yards prior to the injury.

Darnold, who was acquired from the New York Jets in the offseason, has passed for 1,814 yards, seven touchdowns and eight interceptions.

Walker threw one incompletion after replacing Darnold. The second-year pro made one start in 2020 and completed 24 of 34 passes for 258 yards, one touchdown and two interceptions in a 20-0 win over the Detroit Lions.

Walker, 26, is 3-of-15 passing for 33 yards in two appearances this season.

Carolina has been rumored to be considering a trade for Deshaun Watson of the Houston Texans ahead of Tuesday’s trade deadline.

–Field Level Media

Oct 31, 2021; Indianapolis, Indiana, USA; Tennessee Titans wide receiver A.J. Brown (11) runs for a touchdown after the catch in the second quarter against the Indianapolis Colts at Lucas Oil Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Trevor Ruszkowski-USA TODAY Sports

Carson Wentz’s interceptions lead to Titans’ OT win over Colts

Randy Bullock converted a 44-yard field goal with 4:03 left in overtime Sunday, lifting the Tennessee Titans to a 34-31 win over the Indianapolis Colts in Indianapolis.

Bullock’s kick came four plays after Kevin Byard intercepted Carson Wentz and returned it to the Colts’ 32 with 5:48 remaining. Bullock’s second game-winner of the year improved Tennessee to 6-2 and gave it a three-game lead over the Colts (3-5) in the AFC South, plus the tiebreaker of a season sweep.

Wentz completed 27 of 51 passes for 231 yards with three touchdowns and two picks. His first interception in 213 passes occurred with 1:26 remaining in regulation as he tried to avoid a safety and threw a left-handed pass that Elijah Molden grabbed and returned two yards for a score.

But Indianapolis forced overtime when Jonathan Taylor scored on a 1-yard run with 22 seconds left in regulation, one play after Tennessee committed a 42-yard pass interference penalty in the end zone.

Titans quarterback Ryan Tannehill hit on 23 of 33 passes for 265 yards with three touchdowns and two interceptions. NFL rushing leader Derrick Henry was held to 68 yards on 28 carries.

Indianapolis nearly buried Tennessee in the first quarter. It started the game with a 14-play, 82-yard drive that Wentz capped with a 2-yard touchdown pass to Pittman. Then the duo connected again from the 7, one play after Tannehill tossed an interception.

But the Titans found traction after their defense came up with a fourth-down stop at their 46 late in the first. A 60-yard drive ended with Tannehill’s 6-yard scoring strike to Geoff Swaim at the 12:07 mark of the second quarter.

Another Tannehill interception set up the tying Tennessee score. That’s because Tyquan Lewis fumbled at the end of the return and tight end Anthony Firkser recovered. On the next play, a short pass to A.J. Brown turned into a 57-yard touchdown as he made a man miss and raced down the right side.

The Colts regained the lead on the half’s last play as Michael Badgley converted a 34-yard field goal.

The teams traded touchdowns in the third quarter before Bullock nailed a 46-yard field goal to tie the game at 24-24 early in the fourth.

–Field Level Media

Oct 31, 2021; East Rutherford, New Jersey, USA; New York Jets quarterback Mike White (5) passes the ball against the Cincinnati Bengals during the first half at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports

In first career start, Mike White helps Jets stun Bengals

Shaq Lawson gave the Jets their first interception of the season and Mike White outdueled Joe Burrow as New York rallied late to pull a 34-31 upset over the visiting Cincinnati Bengals in East Rutherford, N.J.

Lawson deflected a screen pass and caught the carom for the interception with 4:32 to go. Two plays later, White hit Tyler Kroft with a 13-yard, go-head touchdown. White caught the 2-point conversion pass from Jamison Crowder on a trick play and the Jets led 34-31 with 3:50 left.

Cincinnati (5-3) punted from its own 40 with 2:19 remaining and never got the ball back after a third-down personal foul penalty extended the Jets’ last possession.

The Jets (2-5) snapped a two-game skid and won for the first time in the last four meetings against Cincinnati.

White, in his first NFL start, completed 37 of 45 passes for 405 yards and three touchdowns with two interceptions. Michael Carter added 172 yards from scrimmage on 24 total touches with a touchdown.

Burrow completed 21 of 34 for 259 yards with three touchdowns and one interception. He’s the only QB in the NFL to throw multiple touchdowns in every game this season. Joe Mixon scored twice and gained 91 yards from scrimmage on 18 touches. Tee Higgins led all receivers with 97 yards on four catches.

The Bengals snapped a 17-17 tie late in the third quarter when Burrow found Mixon with an 8-yard touchdown pass out of the backfield. Matt Ammendola answered for the Jets with a 24-yard field goal that trimmed the deficit to 24-20 with 12:31 remaining.

Cincinnati extended the lead to 31-20 with 7:29 left after Burrow’s 10-yard touchdown to Boyd.

But the Jets scored 14 points in less than a minute to take the late lead. White found Ty Johnson for a 19-yard touchdown — the 2-point conversion failed — with 4:36 left.

Then Lawson picked off Burrow and the Jets quickly followed up with the go-ahead score.

The Jets throttled the Bengals’ offense for most of the first half, but still trailed 17-14 at the break. New York opened the game with a sharp scoring drive, and took a 7-0 lead on Carter’s 8-yard run. It was the first points in the first quarter all season for the Jets.

But three first-half turnovers led to 10 Cincinnati points and the lost lead. Germaine Pratt’s interception set up Mixon’s 1-yard TD run to tie it 7-7 on the first play of the second quarter.

The Bengals took a 14-7 lead when Burrow flipped a 2-yard touchdown to rookie WR Ja’Marr Chase. After Vonn Bell’s fumble recovery stopped another Jets’ drive, Evan McPherson hit a 21-yard field goal for a 17-7 lead with 1:54 left in the half.

New York, which outgained Cincinnati 261-119 in the first half, pulled to within 17-14 with 19 seconds left after White found Braxton Berrios with an 8-yard scoring pass.

–Field Level Media

Oct 31, 2021; Orchard Park, New York, USA; Buffalo Bills wide receiver Isaiah McKenzie (19) runs by Miami Dolphins wide receiver Mack Hollins (86) on a punt return in the second quarter at Highmark Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Mark Konezny-USA TODAY Sports

Josh Allen powers Bills past reeling Dolphins

Josh Allen tossed a go-ahead touchdown pass to Gabriel Davis to lift the host Buffalo Bills to a 26-11 win over the Miami Dolphins on Sunday afternoon.

Davis’ score was the first touchdown of the game for Buffalo (5-2). Allen added a fourth-quarter touchdown pass to Stefon Diggs, and the Bills’ ferocious defense held on for the win.

Miami (1-7) lost its seventh straight game overall and seventh consecutive contest in the series against Buffalo. The Bills have outscored Miami 61-11 in two games this season.

Allen completed 29-of-42 passes for 249 yards and two touchdowns. He also ran for 55 yards and one score.

Dolphins quarterback Tua Tagovailoa, the subject of trade rumors, completed 21-of-39 passes for 205 yards. He ran for one score and was intercepted once, by Jordan Poyer.

The Dolphins played without their leading tackler, linebacker Jerome Baker, due to a knee injury. But they got back DeVante Parker (8 catches, 85 yards), who had missed three straight games due to shoulder and hamstring injuries.

Miami’s Jason Sanders, the league’s 2020 All-Pro kicker, missed a 36-yard field goal on the team’s opening drive. Buffalo has gone 18 consecutive games without allowing an opening-drive TD, and that’s the longest active streak in the NFL.

By halftime, the score was tied 3-3. Buffalo’s Tyler Bass made a 57-yard field goal, and Sanders connected from 51.

Late in the first half, the Dolphins squandered a chance to take a lead as they lost a fumble on a third-and-5 play from Buffalo’s 5-yard line. On that play, Dolphins tight end Mike Gesicki went in motion, and the shotgun snap hit him as he passed, with Bills safety Micah Hyde recovering the ball.

Buffalo avoided disaster in the third quarter as Isaiah McKenzie muffed a punt at his own nine. Teammate Jake Kumerow recovered the ball in the end zone, and it was ruled a touchback.

Given that reprieve, the Bills drove 80 yards on 15 plays, culminating that march with Allen’s 8-yard flip to Davis, a native Floridian who was alone in the right corner of the end zone.

Allen’s 19-yard TD pass on a slant to Diggs gave Buffalo a 17-3 lead early in the fourth quarter.

With 9:43 left in the fourth, Tagovailoa scored on a 1-yard run. His two-point-conversion pass to Gesicki cut Miami’s deficit to 17-11. Gesicki also reeled in a 40-yard pass to set up the touchdown.

Buffalo, however, drove for Bass’ 39-yard field goal with 3:29 left. Allen added a 7-yard run with 67 seconds remaining to seal the win.

–Field Level Media