Today is Sunday, August 20, 2017.
|Sunday, August 20, 2017|
|National Football League|
|Saturday, August 19, 2017|
|National Football League|
Savage solidifies starting role leading Texans over Patriots
Saturday, August 19 at 11:52 PM (EDT)
HOUSTON -- Operating out of the shotgun formation, Houston Texans starting quarterback Tom Savage made a fast decision when he saw wide receiver Jaelen Strong break across the middle against the New England Patriots secondary.
Savage lobbed a perfect spiral in the back of the end zone to connect with Strong, a fellow Philadelphia native, for a leaping 2-yard touchdown catch against the reigning Super Bowl champions.
Strong beat Patriots Pro Bowl cornerback Malcolm Butler for the score during a 27-23 preseason win for the Texans at NRG Stadium.
It was an extremely sharp performance by Savage, the Texans' new starter, as he continues to hold off the challenge of gifted first-round draft pick Deshaun Watson.
Savage completed 8 of 9 passes for 98 yards, one score and no interceptions for a pristine 149.1 passer rating in nearly one quarter of action before being replaced by Watson.
At this stage of the preseason, Savage has done nothing to relinquish his grip on the starting job.
"Yeah, I'm really, really comfortable with this offense," Savage said. "We have a lot of talent out there and a lot of the guys are making some big plays for me and it's been awesome."
Watson completed just 3 of 10 passes for 102 yards for a 69.6 passer rating. Sixty-three of those yards came on an impressive catch-and-run by rookie running back D'Onta Foreman. Watson rushed for 10 yards on four carries.
Watson also rushed for one touchdown, his second this preseason.
Although Watson made some good plays while dealing with pressure, it wasn't the kind of performance that would make a convincing argument for him to unseat Savage.
For the Patriots, quarterback Tom Brady completed 6 of 9 passes for 67 yards, one touchdown and had no interceptions for a 125.7 passer rating.
He found running back Rex Burkhead in the open field with Burkhead beating rookie linebacker Zach Cunningham for a 22-yard touchdown pass.
In relief of Brady, Patriots quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo completed 15 of 23 passes for 145 yards, one touchdown and one interception.
Big return helps Bears hold off Cardinals
Sunday, August 20 at 1:46 AM (EDT)
Deonte Thompson returned a missed field goal 109 yards for a touchdown at the end of the second quarter and the Chicago Bears hung on to defeat the Arizona Cardinals 24-23 on Saturday night in a preseason game at Glendale, Ariz.
The Cardinals rallied from a 10-point deficit in the final two minutes to almost steal the victory, but after a 52-yard field goal with 1:25 to play and a 3-yard touchdown pass by Blaine Gabbert with nine seconds left, Arizona couldn't connect on a two-point conversion.
On the conversion try, Gabbert looked for Ross again and the receiver was open, but didn't turn back for the ball in time as the pass fell incomplete in the end zone.
Earlier, Arizona punter Matt Wile executed an onside kick that the Cardinals recovered after it bounced in and out of the hands of Chicago's Daniel Braverman.
Thompson's return came after the Cardinals elected to have Phil Dawson attempt a 63-yarder with one second left before halftime. It was short and to the right, and Thompson took it all the way back down the left sideline.
Neither team was able to do very much offensively, as they only combined for 559 -- 267 by the Bears and 292 by the Cardinals. Most of that came during the frantic fourth quarter.
Bears quarterback Mike Glennon managed to shake off last week's disappointing performance in a loss to the Broncos by completing 13 of 18 passes for 89 yards and a touchdown. He was intercepted once, but it wasn't for a pick six like it was in his Bears debut against Denver last week.
Unlike when he completed 2 of 8 passes for 20 yards and a 0.00 quarterback rating against the Broncos, Glennon got into a decent rhythm in this game. His lone touchdown pass was a 7-yard scoring strike to Kendall Wright with 36 seconds remaining in the first half.
Cardinals quarterback Carson Palmer was 9 of 14 for 67 yards with one touchdown and no interceptions. He capped an 11-play, 43-yard drive with a 1-yard scoring toss to tight end Jermaine Gresham in the first quarter. Preceding the touchdown, Tyrann Mathieu had intercepted a Glennon pass and returned it 52 yards.
Arizona barely used its two primary offensive weapons, running back David Johnson and wide receiver Larry Fitzgerald. Johnson had three carries for 3 yards and Fitzgerald was thrown to only once before they each were pulled by coach Bruce Arians.
Gabbert finished 14 of 25 for 174 yards with one touchdown pass, a touchdown run and one interception.
Bears rookie quarterback Mitchell Trubisky, the darling of last week's game against the Broncos, completed 6 of 8 passes for 60 yards and one touchdown -- a 6-yard scoring pass to Benny Cunningham.
Siemian stands out in Broncos' victory over 49ers
Sunday, August 20 at 1:28 AM (EDT)
Trevor Siemian put the 49ers away -- and might have put away the race for the Broncos' quarterback position.
Siemian went 8 of 11 for 93 yards and a touchdown to lead Denver to a 33-14 victory over San Francisco in Santa Clara, Calif., on Saturday, spoiling the preseason home opener for new 49ers coach Kyle Shanahan.
Siemian did not start, as Broncos coach Vance Joseph opted to open the game with second-year quarterback Paxton Lynch.
But the competition between the quarterbacks might have effectively ended Saturday, as Lynch looked unsettled and didn't complete any passes longer than 7 yards, while Siemian pushed the ball downfield and hit wide receiver Jordan Taylor for a 19-yard touchdown that pushed the Broncos' halftime lead to 20-0.
Lynch left with a 13-0 lead, but that was built mostly by 49ers' miscues. Four San Francisco turnovers led to all 20 of Denver's first-half points. Lynch finished with 39 yards on 9-of-13 passing, averaging only 3 yards per attempt.
The Broncos started all four of their first-half scoring drives from beyond their 45-yard line, and twice took over possession in 49ers territory, including at the San Francisco 11 after a Riley Dixon punt bounced off the leg of 49ers safety Jaquiski Tartt.
Denver safety Will Parks recovered the loose ball and the Broncos scored four plays later on a 1-yard run by C.J. Anderson to open the scoring.
San Francisco's offense found some success moving the ball against the Broncos during joint practices at the 49ers' facility this week but could not replicate that in Saturday's game.
Turnovers, penalties and an inefficient running game often forced quarterback Brian Hoyer into long-yardage situations, and although he completed eight of his 11 passes for 89 yards, the 49ers ran only four plays in Broncos territory during Hoyer's four possessions.
Rookie backup quarterback C.J. Beathard entered the game late in the second quarter and finished with 110 yards and a touchdown on 7-of-12 passing.
The Broncos won comfortably despite playing the game without eight starters: outside linebackers Von Miller and Shane Ray; wide receiver Emmanuel Sanders; center Matt Paradis; defensive ends Jared Crick and Derek Wolfe; safety T.J. Ward; and inside linebacker Brandon Marshall.
Several other key defensive players, most notably All-Pro cornerbacks Chris Harris Jr. and Aqib Talib, Pro Bowl safety Darian Stewart and nose tackle Domata Peko, were pulled after one quarter.
Goff looks sharp in Rams' win over Raiders
Sunday, August 20 at 1:46 AM (EDT)
OAKLAND -- On a night Jared Goff finally played like the player taken first overall in the 2016 draft, it was his backup that helped close the deal in the Los Angeles Rams' win over the Oakland Raiders.
Sean Mannion guided the Rams on a fourth-quarter touchdown drive, connecting with Josh Reynolds on a 20-yard touchdown pass with 1:11 left in the game to give the Rams a 24-21 come-from-behind win.
Reynolds, a fourth-round pick from Texas A&M who recently returned to practice after dealing with a leg injury, capped an impressive week with the game-clinching touchdown reception.
It was a coming out party of sorts for Goff, who grew up in nearby Marin County and starred at Cal Berkeley.
Goff, the first overall pick in last year's draft but a disappointment as a rookie, was sharp while playing into the second quarter throwing for 160 yards on 16-of-20 passing with one touchdown.
More importantly, he marched the Rams to two touchdown and a field goal on three of his four drives while spreading the ball around to various receivers. Cooper Kupp was his primary target, the rookie catching six passes for 70 yards including a 23-yard touchdown strike from Goff to open the first quarter.
The Raiders responded to the Kupp touchdown grab when quarterback Derek Carr hooked up with tight end Lee Smith on a 19-yard touchdown throw.
Carr also connected with Michael Crabtree on a 13-yard touchdown in the second quarter.
Carr, making his first appearance since breaking his leg on the second-to-last week of the 2016 season, finished 7 of 9 with 100 yards and two touchdowns.
It was the Raiders' first home game at the Oakland Coliseum since the National Football League approved their move to Las Vegas.
The Raiders will play at least the next two years in Oakland before making the move to Las Vegas in 2020. Their status for the 2019 season is still unclear.
Rams running back Todd Gurley had 38 yards on eight carries, including a 2-yard touchdown run.
Rams newcomer Sammy Watkins made his debut with his new team after getting traded from Buffalo late last week. He had two catches for eight yards and just missed on a perfectly thrown pass from Goff in in the corner of the end zone.
Titans use turnovers, late score to edge past Panthers
Saturday, August 19 at 6:47 PM (EDT)
NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- The Tennessee Titans had a big lead, lost it and then got it back in a 34-27 preseason victory over the Carolina Panthers on Saturday afternoon.
The Titans evened their preseason record at 1-1 and the Panthers fell to 1-1.
Tennessee's offense, which sputtered last week in a 7-3 loss to the New York Jets, scored on its first three possessions, thanks in part to two first-quarter turnovers forced by the Titans' defense.
The Titans opened the scoring on a 34-yard field goal by kicker Ryan Succop and then created a takeaway when cornerback Logan Ryan knocked the ball free from Panthers receiver Devin Funchess on Carolina's ensuring series.
Kevin Byard picked up the fumble and returned it to the Carolina 13-yard line. The Titans' offense cashed in when Marcus Mariota hit Delanie Walker for a 4-yard touchdown pass and a 10-0 lead.
Mariota's day was done after that. He finished 6 of 8 for 61 yards and a touchdown pass. He also ran once for 9 yards.
The Titans' defense had another takeaway on the next possession, again giving Tennessee the football deep in Carolina territory.
Rookie linebacker Jayon Brown tipped a Derek Anderson pass into the air and Justin Staples picked it off, returning it to the 17. From there, Derrick Henry scored on the first play as the Titans went up 17-0.
The Panthers began to creep back into the game, cutting the lead to 17-7 on Christian McCaffrey's 17-yard run.
Henry added his second touchdown, this one from 1 yard to push the lead to 24-7 before Carolina added Harrison Butker's 46-yard field goal before halftime.
Carolina dominated the second half and eventually pulled even at 27 with 3:56 left when Graham Gano connected on a 37-yard field goal.
The Titans punted the ball back to the Panthers, but Tennessee's defense rose to the occasion again, forcing another turnover when Aaron Wallace sacked Garrett Gilbert and Jimmy Staten recovered at the 3. David Fluellen scored and the Titans held on for the victory.
Mahomes throws for 2 TDs in Chiefs' win over Bengals
Saturday, August 19 at 10:36 PM (EDT)
CINCINNATI -- Patrick Mahomes bolstered his case for the Kansas City Chiefs' backup quarterback job, passing for 88 yards and two touchdowns in a 30-12 victory over the Cincinnati Bengals on Saturday night at Paul Brown Stadium.
Tight end Demetrius Harris caught two touchdown passes and rookie Kareem Hunt, a third-round pick out of Toledo, rushed for 40 yards on eight carries for the Chiefs.
Running back Charcandrick West continued his bid for a roster spot, rushing for 113 yards on seven carries and helping the Chiefs amass 413 yards of total offense.
The Bengals' offense got off to a fast start, but their defense struggled to contain the Chiefs.
A 22-yard completion from Andy Dalton to A.J. Green set up Randy Bullock's 47-yard field goal to put Cincinnati ahead 3-0.
The Bengals' first-team defense gave up drives of 70 and 46 yards against the Chiefs' first-teamers. Kansas City also had a 75-yard drive in the half and scored on each of its three first-half possessions.
The Chiefs marched 70 yards before settling for a Sam Ficken field goal. Kansas City converted a fourth-and-1 at the 12-yard line and Harris caught a 5-yard touchdown pass from Alex Smith to put KC ahead 10-3.
Smith was 8-of-9 passing for 54 yards on the two drives.
Harris caught a 1-yard touchdown pass from Mahomes to make the score 16-6, after Ficken missed the point-after attempt.
Three Chiefs quarterbacks threw touchdown passes and finished with a combined passer rating of 130.1.
De'Anthony Thomas caught a 7-yard scoring pass from Mahomes.
Chiefs cornerback Eric Murray intercepted an AJ McCarron pass to set up an 18-yard touchdown pass from Tyler Bray to Seantavius Jones to make the score 30-9 in the third quarter.
McCarron, the Bengals' backup quarterback, was 8 of 15 for 93 yards and an interception.
Cincinnati's kicker battle heated up with Bullock making field goals of 47 and 26 yards and Jake Elliott connecting on tries of 32 and 39.
Bengals backup safety Shawn Williams left the game in the second quarter with a right elbow injury and did not return.
Wide receiver John Ross, the Bengals' first-round draft choice this year, was cleared to practice Monday but did not play. He's recovering from a shoulder injury suffered in college.
Cowboys' stars see first action in victory over Colts
Saturday, August 19 at 10:34 PM (EDT)
ARLINGTON, Tex. -- Dak Prescott posted a perfect 158.3 passer rating as the Dallas Cowboys defeated the Indianapolis Colts 24-19 on Saturday at AT&T Stadium.
Prescott completed 7 of 8 passes for 108 yards and a touchdown, a 32-yard strike to receiver Dez Bryant on the opening drive.
Colts' backup quarterback Scott Tolzien started for Andrew Luck, who remains sidelined with a right shoulder injury. Tolzien completed 10 of 14 passes for 70 yards and led the Colts to a field goal in his five first-half drives.
Indianapolis evened the score 7-7 with defensive end Lavar Edwards returning a 15-yard fumble for a touchdown as linebacker Barkevious Mingo stripped Dallas backup Kellen Moore, who went 10 of 21 for 131 yards.
Two drives later, Moore led the Cowboys on a nine-play, 66-yard scoring drive to take a 10-7 lead after a 25-yard Dan Bailey field goal with 7:26 until halftime.
Indianapolis kicker Adam Vinatieri tied the game 10-10 with a 33-yard field goal on an eight-play, 52-yard drive that featured backup running back Marlon Mack rushing three times for 20 yards. Mack gained 45 yards on five carries as the Colts' leading rusher. The Cowboys outgained Indianapolis 257 to 104 in the first half.
Defensive end Margus Hunt blocked a 45-yard Sam Irwin-Hill field goal in the third quarter. Cornerback Darryl Morris recovered at the Colts 34-yard line. Mack rushed for 23 yards to set up Vinatieri's 42-yard field goal to give Indianapolis a 13-10 lead.
Cooper Rush led the Cowboys on two consecutive touchdown drives with a 19-yard touchdown pass to receiver Noah Brown to take a 17-13 lead with 1:32 in the third quarter, a six-play, 76-yard drive. The second was a 3-yard pass to receiver Lance Lenoir to give the Cowboys a 24-13 lead with 8:46 to play. Rush completed 8 of 9 passes for 92 yards and two touchdowns.
Colts quarterback Stephen Morris threw an 18-yard touchdown pass to receiver Fred Brown to narrow the lead to 24-19 after a failed two-point try with 0:57 in the game.
Darren McFadden started for Cowboys running back Ezekiel Elliott and led all Dallas rushers with 59 yards on nine carries.
Stafford sharp in three series of Lions' win over Jets
Sunday, August 20 at 2:38 AM (EDT)
DETROIT -- Starting quarterback Matthew Stafford connected with Marvin Jones on a 5-yard scoring strike and Matt Prater kicked three field goals in the Detroit Lions' 16-6 preseason victory over the New York Jets at Ford Field.
Stafford, who played three series, looked sharp while completing eight of 10 passes for 84 yards. Backup Jake Rudock also threw for 84 yards while completing eight of 13 passes with an interception.
Christian Hackenberg started at quarterback for New York and played the entire first half but connected on just two of six passes for 14 yards. Bryce Petty played the second half and completed 15 of 24 pass attempts for 160 yards while getting intercepted in the closing seconds. Veteran Josh McCown, the projected Week 1 starter, did not play.
Bilal Powell led the New York rushing attack with 32 yards on nine carries.
Detroit, which kicked off the preseason with a 24-10 win at Indianapolis on Sunday, led 13-0 at halftime.
Prater kicked a 37-yard field goal to finish off Detroit's first possession. Later in the quarter, the Lions (2-0) began a 78-yard drive that ended with Stafford's touchdown pass in the opening minute of the second quarter. Jones caught four passes for 34 yards during the drive and scored when he beat one-on-one coverage on the right side of the end zone.
Rudock led an 87-yard drive late in the half but the Lions had settle on Prater's 25-yard field goal with nine seconds left.
The Jets (1-1) were held to 43 total yards and two first downs in the opening half.
Ross Martin's 31-yard field goal early in the fourth ended the Jets' scoring drought. That finished off a 13-play, 79-yard drive.
Martin made a 28-yard field goal with 5:30 left to cut Detroit's lead to seven. Prater's 50-yard field goal with 1:11 remaining completed the scoring.
Rookie Hill leads Packers to winning TD vs. Redskins
Sunday, August 20 at 2:05 AM (EDT)
LANDOVER, Md. -- Rookie quarterback Taysom Hill ran 23 yards for the go-ahead touchdown with 6:16 remaining and the Green Bay Packers defeated the Washington Redskins 21-17 on Saturday night at FedEx Field.
Hill, undrafted out of Brigham Young, capped a seven-play, 65-yard drive when he took off up the middle, juked two defenders around the 10-yard line and scored. He completed 6 of 11 passes for 49 yards and ran six times for 38 yards.
Aaron Rodgers, who saw preseason action only during Week 3 a year ago, played the first series, completing 6 of 8 passes for 37 yards and a touchdown. He ran twice for 15 yards.
Rodgers' backup, Brett Hundley, was 9 of 10 for 107 yards and a touchdown for Green Bay (2-0).
Kirk Cousins, meanwhile, played the entire first half for Washington (0-2). He finished 14 of 23 for 144 yards and one touchdown, coming just before intermission.
Washington rookie running back Semaje Perine rebounded from a rough debut (six carries, 15 yards), gaining 45 yards on eight carries and adding a 29-yard reception.