McCoy rallies Bills to 28-21 win over Jaguars
ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. (AP) — Once LeSean McCoy eluded two defenders and cut up the right sideline with nothing but the end zone in front of him, the Bills’ running back had time to glance up at the big screen and start celebrating.
“You can just hear the crowd yelling,” McCoy said, recalling his 75-yard touchdown run on the first play from scrimmage in the second half. “You feel the guy (behind you) and then you look on the screen and I know I’ve got him beat.”
McCoy’s touchdown provided the Bills the spark they needed to persevere through a topsy-turvy second half and pull out a 28-21 win over the Jacksonville Jaguars on Sunday.
It was McCoy’s second touchdown of the game, the longest of his career, and breathed life into a Tyrod Taylor-led offense that had managed just 63 yards of offense in the first half.
“It’s huge. It gave the entire team life,” guard Richie Incognito said.
It provided a boost to Buffalo’s defense, too.
“It’s like we’re back,” said cornerback Nickell Robey-Coleman. “It’s like get back out there and do what we do. Fresh start.”
The Bills (6-5) won for the second straight week in which they’ve trailed at the half to stay in the AFC playoff picture.
And Taylor overcame a fourth-quarter deficit for just the second time in 25 games.
Taylor’s 16-yard touchdown pass to Justin Hunter with 10:46 remaining put the Bills ahead for good, and he also scored on a 7-yard run.
The game was decided with four minutes left, when the Jaguars were unable to convert a fourth-and-9 at the Buffalo 46. Blake Bortles hit Marquise Lee on a crossing pattern over the middle, but he was limited to a 4-yard gain.
The Bills then took over and ran out the clock.
The Jaguars (2-9) lost for the sixth straight game — their longest skid since opening the 2014 season at 0-6.
And they did so by blowing a fourth-quarter lead for the third time this season.
“We just can’t get over the hill,” said Jaguars defensive lineman Malik Jackson, who had two sacks.
“We have moral victories and that’s good for us because we’re learning and we’re getting better,” Jackson added. “But when compared to the other 31 teams in the league, we’re not doing too good. And that’s what we get graded on.”
Bortles went 13 of 26 for 126 yards and two touchdowns, and also had a career-best 81 yards rushing. The Jaguars, who entered the game with a league-high 22 giveaways, also didn’t turn the ball over.
Injuries, however, became an issue.
Chris Ivory, who opened the scoring with a 2-yard run , was sidelined in the first half by a hamstring injury. And then Jacksonville lost receiver Allen Hurns, also with a hamstring injury while diving into the end zone on a 12-yard catch and run .
The Bills overcame their growing list of injured players.
McCoy, who also scored on a 2-point conversion, finished with 103 yards rushing and showed few signs of being bothered a week after having surgery for a dislocated left thumb.
Receiver Sammy Watkins had three catches for 80 yards — including a 62-yard reception — playing his first game in nine weeks since aggravating an injury to his surgically repaired left foot.
“It just shows the resiliency of this bunch,” Incognito said. “It just keeps our dream alive.”
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RAIDERS 35, PANTHERS 32
OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) — Derek Carr came back from an injured pinkie to lead another fourth-quarter comeback and the Raiders won their fifth straight game.
Carr threw for 315 yards and two touchdowns despite missing a series after the injury, leading the Raiders (9-2) back from an eight-point deficit in the fourth quarter to clinch their first winning season since 2002.
After leading a tying drive earlier in the fourth quarter, Carr hit Michael Crabtree on a 49-yard pass on third-and-9 to help set up Sebastian Janikowski’s 23-yard field goal with 1:45 left.
Cam Newton led the Panthers (4-7) into Oakland territory on the final drive. But Greg Olsen dropped a pass on third down that would have put Carolina in field goal range, and Khalil Mack stripped Newton on a fourth-down sack to seal the win.
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GIANTS 27, BROWNS 13
CLEVELAND (AP) — Eli Manning threw two touchdown passes to Odell Beckham Jr., Jason Pierre-Paul returned a fumble for a TD, and the New York Giants extended their winning streak to six, holding off Cleveland 27-13 on Sunday to keep the Browns winless.
Manning had three TD passes. They don’t overwhelm anyone, but the Giants (8-3) do just enough to win and are in position to make the playoffs for the first time since 2011, when they won the Super Bowl.
Manning threw a 32-yard TD pass to Beckham in the second quarter and added a 4-yarder to the star wide receiver with 5:10 left to finally put away the Browns (0-12).
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TAMPA, Fla. (AP) — Jameis Winston threw a pair of touchdown passes to Mike Evans and Tampa Bay’s rejuvenated defense shut down Russell Wilson and Seattle.
Evans scored on receptions of 3 and 23 yards in the opening quarter, a grieving Alterraun Verner had one of two interceptions off Wilson, and the Bucs sacked the Seattle quarterback six times.
The Bucs (6-5) have won three straight to climb back into contention for a playoff berth. In addition to stopping Seattle’s three-game winning streak, they remained one game behind first-place Atlanta in the NFC South.
The Seahawks are 7-3-1.
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PATRIOTS 22, JETS 17
EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. (AP) — Tom Brady tied Peyton Manning for the most wins by a quarterback in NFL history, getting his 200th by throwing a go-ahead 8-yard touchdown pass to Malcolm Mitchell with 1:56 left.
Trailing 17-16 with 5:04 left and the ball on the Patriots 17, Brady led an efficient drive by completing six passes. After James White stretched for 4 yards on fourth-and-4, a 25-yard catch by Chris Hogan put the ball at the 8. Brady then zipped a pass to Mitchell to put the Patriots (9-2) ahead.
A 2-point conversion try by White was initially ruled good, but the call was reversed because the ball never crossed the goal line — giving the Jets (3-8) a final chance.
But Chris Long hit Ryan Fitzpatrick before he could throw, resulting in a fumble that was recovered by Trey Flowers.
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FALCONS 38, CARDINALS 19
ATLANTA (AP) — Taylor Gabriel took two short passes for touchdowns and the Atlanta Falcons returned from a bye week to add to Arizona’s misery.
Gabriel, cut by the winless Browns before the season, scored on plays of 35 and 25 yards that showed off his speed.
His second score finished the Cardinals, who began the season touted as a Super Bowl contender but have been one of the NFL’s most disappointing teams.
The Falcons (7-4) began the day leading the NFC South and moved a step closer to their first playoff berth since 2012. The Cardinals (4-6-1) have lost two straight and three of their past four, putting them in danger of missing the postseason a season after reaching the NFC championship game.
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CHARGERS 21, TEXANS 13
HOUSTON (AP) — Philip Rivers threw for 242 yards and three touchdowns against the mistake-prone Texans.
Dontrelle Inman had 119 yards receiving and a touchdown to help San Diego (5-6) to the victory.
The Texans (6-5) lost in Houston for the first time this season after winning their first five here. Playing a large part were four turnovers, including three interceptions by Brock Osweiler.
The Chargers were up by four in the fourth quarter when Rivers evaded the rush and delivered a 25-yard pass to Inman. Kareem Jackson was flagged for unnecessary roughness for a helmet-to-helmet hit on the play, leaving San Diego at the 12-yard line. Rivers delivered a touchdown pass to rookie Hunter Henry on the next play to push the lead to 21-10.
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TITANS 27, BEARS 21
CHICAGO (AP) — Marcus Mariota threw for 226 yards and two touchdowns, and the Titans hung on to beat the depleted Bears.
The Titans (6-6) gave their playoff hopes a boost, though they watched as Chicago (2-9) cut a 20-point lead to six in the fourth quarter. The Titans moved a half-game out of first place in the AFC South.
Matt Barkley, starting for the injured Jay Cutler, led the late surge.
The Bears had a first down at the Tennessee 7 in the final minute when Josh Bellamy dropped a pass in the end zone on first down. Barkley’s next three attempts fell incomplete, preserving the win for Tennessee.
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SAINTS 49, RAMS 21
NEW ORLEANS (AP) — Drew Brees passed for 310 yards and four touchdowns and Mark Ingram scored twice.
Playing 10 days after being knocked unconscious in a Thursday night loss at Carolina, Ingram rushed for 146 yards on 14 carries, including a 61-yard scamper and a 10-yard touchdown on a fourth-and-1 play. He also scored on a 21-yard screen to the right side of the field, which was wide open as the Rams (4-7) tried to pressure Brees.
Two of Brees’ scoring strikes went to rookie Michael Thomas, whose touchdowns of 6 and 21 yards were part of a nine-catch, 108-yard performance. Brees’ other touchdowns went to Ingram and Brandon Coleman from 6 yards for New Orleans (5-6).
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DOLPHINS 31, 49ERS 24
MIAMI GARDENS, Fla. (AP) — Ndamukong Suh tackled Colin Kaepernick 2 yards short of the goal line as time ran out, and the Dolphins handed the 49ers a franchise-record 10th consecutive loss.
Ryan Tannehill threw for 285 yards and three scores to compensate for a sputtering Miami ground game.
With the 49ers trailing by seven, Kaepernick moved them from their 38 to the 6 in the final 1:44. But he threw incomplete on first down, and then was tackled from behind by the 305-pound Suh on the final play.
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RAVENS 19, BENGALS 14
BALTIMORE (AP) — Justin Tucker kicked four field goals and Baltimore shut down the Bengals’ depleted offense.
Joe Flacco threw for 234 yards and a touchdown to help Baltimore (6-5) snap a five-game losing streak against the Bengals (3-7-1), whose playoff hopes took another serious blow.
The victory was not assured until Cincinnati quarterback Andy Dalton fumbled when sacked by Elvis Dumervil, and defensive end Lawrence Guy recovered at the Baltimore 21 with 1:05 left and the Ravens up 19-12.
Cincinnati got a safety on the final play when Baltimore punter Sam Koch ran out of the end zone while his blockers intentionally held Cincinnati rushers. A game can end on an offensive penalty.