NFL Today, Week 4
Monday, Sept. 30
Cincinnati at Pittsburgh, 8:15 p.m. EDT. A matchup of winless AFC North rivals as the Bengals (0-3) square off against the Steelers (0-3). Pittsburgh has won eight straight in the series, and 11 of 12 — with Cincinnati’s only victory during that span at Heinz Field in 2015. The Bengals are trying to avoid their first 0-4 start since 2008. Meanwhile, Mason Rudolph makes his second straight start in place of the injured Ben Roethlisberger for the Steelers.
— Jameis Winston, Buccaneers, passed for 385 yards and four touchdowns and an interception in Tampa Bay’s 55-40 victory over the previously unbeaten Los Angeles Rams.
— Philip Rivers, Chargers, threw for 310 yards and two scores to help Los Angeles win in Miami for the first time in 38 years, 30-10.
— Marcus Mariota, Titans, threw three first-half touchdown passes, leading Tennessee to a 24-10 victory over Atlanta.
— Baker Mayfield, Browns, passed for 342 yards and a touchdown and an interception in Cleveland’s 40-25 victory at Baltimore.
— Patrick Mahomes, Chiefs, converted a fourth down with a 15-yard run to extend a game-winning drive and finished with a career-high 56 yards rushing while going 24 of 42 for 315 yards in Kansas City’s 34-30 win at Detroit.
— Nick Chubb, Browns, ran for 165 yards and three scores against the league’s third-ranked rushing defense to help Cleveland top Baltimore 40-25.
— Leonard Fournette, Jaguars, rushed for a career-high 225 yards on 29 carries in Jacksonville’s 26-24 win at Denver.
— Kerryon Johnson, Lions, had 125 yards rushing on 26 carries in Detroit’s 34-30 loss to Kansas City.
— Frank Gore, Bills, ran for 109 yards in Buffalo’s 16-10 loss to New England and became the fourth player in NFL history to top 15,000 yards rushing.
— Christian McCaffrey, Panthers, had 93 yards rushing and a touchdown and led Carolina with 86 yards receiving on 10 receptions in a 16-10 win at Houston.
— Chris Godwin, Buccaneers, had 12 catches for 172 yards in Tampa Bay’s 55-40 win over the Los Angeles Rams.
— Jarvis Landry, Browns, caught eight passes for 167 yards in Cleveland’s 40-25 win at Baltimore.
— Robert Woods, Rams, had 13 receptions for 164 yards in Los Angeles’ 55-40 loss to Tampa Bay.
— A.J. Brown, Titans, caught two touchdown passes in Tennessee’s 24-10 victory at Atlanta.
— Austin Hooper, Falcons, had 130 yards receiving on nine receptions in Atlanta’s 24-10 loss to Tennessee.
— Josh Lambo, Jaguars, kicked a 33-yard field goal as time expired, sending Jacksonville past the winless Denver Broncos 26-24.
— J.C. Jackson and Matthew Slater, Patriots. Jackson blocked a punt — and also intercepted two passes on defense — and Slater recovered the ball and returned it 11 yards for a touchdown in New England’s 16-10 victory at Buffalo.
— Wil Lutz, Saints, kicked four field goals in New Orleans’ 12-10 win over Dallas, accounting for all of his team’s scoring.
— Matt Gay, Buccaneers, booted two field goals and made all seven of his extra-point attempts in Tampa Bay’s 55-40 victory over the Los Angeles Rams.
— Eddy Pineiro, Bears, kicked three field goals and an extra point to account for 10 of Chicago’s points in a 16-6 win over Minnesota.
— Ndamukong Suh and Shaquil Barrett, Buccaneers. Suh returned Jared Goff’s fumble 37 yards for a touchdown with 1:06 to play in Tampa Bay’s 55-40 victory over the previously unbeaten Los Angeles Rams. Barrett had a sack, forced fumble and an interception.
— Bashaud Breeland, Chiefs, recovered Kerryon Johnson’s fumble and returned it 100 yards for a touchdown in Kansas City’s 34-30 win at Detroit.
— Jabrill Peppers, Giants, scored on a 32-yard interception return in New York’s 24-3 win over Washington.
— Erik Harris, Raiders, returned a late interception 30 yards for a score to seal a 31-24 victory for Oakland at Indianapolis.
— Jadeveon Clowney, Seahawks, returned his first career interception 27 yards for a touchdown to help Seattle top Arizona 27-10.
— Desmond King, Chargers, led Los Angeles’ defensive charge with 2½ sacks, a tackle for a loss and two quarterback hits in a 30-10 win at Miami.
— Vonn Bell, Saints, forced a fumble and had two recoveries to help lift New Orleans to a 12-10 victory Dallas.
Arizona’s Larry Fitzgerald had five catches for 47 yards in the Cardinals’ 27-10 loss to Seattle, giving him 1,326 for his career — surpassing Tony Gonzalez (1,325) for the second most in NFL history. Only Jerry Rice (1,549) has more. ... Buffalo’s Frank Gore rushed for 109 yards in the Bills’ 16-10 loss to New England, giving him 15,021 for his career — the fourth player with at least 15,000. He joins Pro Football Hall of Famers Emmitt Smith (18,355), Walter Payton (16,726) and Barry Sanders (15,269). ... Atlanta’s Julio Jones had four catches for 52 yards in his 115th game, giving him 11,048 yards receiving — surpassing Calvin Johnson (127 games) to become the fastest player in NFL history to reach the mark.
STREAKS & STATS
Kansas City’s Patrick Mahomes had his streak of throwing at least two touchdown passes stopped at 14 games after going without one in the Chiefs’ 34-30 win at Detroit. He was also the first player in league history to have at least 350 yards passing and three touchdowns without an interception in three straight games before getting slowed in Detroit. He was 24 of 42 for 315 yards against the Lions. ... The Chargers’ 30-10 victory was the team’s first in Miami since an overtime playoff thriller in January 1982. They had lost eight straight in Miami. ... Tom Brady’s 45.9 passer rating in New England’s 16-10 win at Buffalo was the sixth lowest of his career and lowest since finishing with a 34 rating in a 27-20 loss to Indianapolis on Nov. 5, 2006. The Patriots had lost the previous six times Brady finished with a passer rating of 48 or lower. Brady did improve to 31-3 against Buffalo, extending the NFL career mark for most victories by a quarterback against one opponent. ... The Seahawks continued their dominance inside State Farm Stadium with another win, 27-10 at Arizona. Seattle hasn’t lost in Glendale since 2012, with a 6-0-1 record during that span, including a 2016 tie. ... Tampa Bay’s 55-40 win over the Los Angeles Rams was the highest-scoring game in the Buccaneers’ 44-year history. ... Leonard Fournette ran for a career-high 225 yards in Jacksonville’s 26-24 win over Denver, ending the Jaguars’ drought of 100-yard rushes at 22 games — the second-longest streak in the NFL behind Philadelphia’s 32-game drought. ... New England’s Devin McCourty has an interception in four straight games to start the season.
Kansas City’s Patrick Mahomes became the first quarterback in the Super Bowl era (since 1966) to lead a team to multiple 4-0 starts before his 25th birthday. ... New England is 4-0 for the first time in four years. ... Washington’s 0-4 start is its worst since the Redskins lost their first five in 2001.
Jared Goff passed for a career-high 517 yards and two touchdowns, but the Rams’ $134 million quarterback also threw three interceptions for the second time in his career as Los Angeles fell to Tampa Bay 55-40. He completed 45 of a whopping 68 passes, and also lost a fumble that was returned 37 yards for a touchdown by Ndamukong Suh.
Raiders linebacker Vontaze Burfict was ejected early in the second quarter of Oakland’s 31-24 win at Indianapolis after being called for unnecessary roughness on a helmet-to-helmet collision with tight end Jack Doyle. Even before referee Scott Novak announced to the crowd what a replay review determined, Burfict was jogging into the locker room. It’s not the first time Burfict has run afoul of league rules. He had 11 fines and suspensions in seven seasons with Cincinnati before joining the Raiders.
BIG GUYS UP FRONT
Tennessee quarterback Marcus Mariota praised the protection provided by his offensive line after he was not sacked in the Titans’ 24-10 win at Atlanta. It was a dramatic turnaround for the line after Tennessee allowed 17 sacks in its first three games — almost six per game. “Those guys up front did a great job,” Mariota said.
Tampa Bay linebacker Shaquil Barrett had a sack, forced fumble and interception in the Buccaneers’ 55-40 win over the Los Angeles Rams. He has nine sacks this season, tied with Mark Gastineau (1984), Kabeer Gbaja-Biamila (2001) and Kevin Greene (1998) for the most through a team’s first four games since 1982 when the individual sack became an official statistic.
Carolina running back Christian McCaffrey had 179 yards from scrimmage yards — 93 rushing and 86 receiving — and a touchdown run in the Panthers’ 16-10 win at Houston. He had 209 yards from scrimmage yards and two touchdowns in Week 1 and 188 yards from scrimmage yards and a touchdown in Week 3, joining Pro Football Hall of Famer Jim Brown (1963) as the only players in league history with three games of at least 175 yards from scrimmage and one touchdown in their team’s first four games of a season. McCaffrey also caught 10 passes in the win Sunday, his sixth career game with at least that many — tying Larry Centers and LaDainian Tomlinson for the most career games with at least 10 by a running back in NFL history.
Oakland tight end Darren Waller had seven catches for 53 yards in the Raiders’ 31-24 win at Indianapolis. That gives him 33 receptions on the season, tying him with Antonio Gates (33 in 2007) for the most catches by a tight end through his team’s first four games of a season in NFL history.
NOT FOR LONG
The Miami Dolphins (0-4) held a lead for the first time this season, but it lasted only 3 minutes, 49 seconds as they lost 30-10 to the Los Angeles Chargers. The Chargers have been outscored 163-26 this season, which is the NFL’s worst four-game point differential since at least 1940.
Chicago quarterback Mitchell Trubisky left the game against Minnesota because of a left shoulder injury. A scrambling Trubisky was hurt on the opening possession when Danielle Hunter dragged him down and the quarterback’s arm got pinned awkwardly under his body as the ball popped out. ... Buffalo quarterback Josh Allen was placed in the NFL’s concussion protocol after taking a helmet-to-helmet hit by Patriots defensive back Jonathan Jones in the opening minute of the fourth quarter of a 16-10 loss to New England. ... Los Angeles Chargers defensive end Melvin Ingram left the game in the first quarter at Miami with a hamstring injury. ... Detroit tight end T.J. Hockenson (concussion) was carted off the field in the third quarter against Kansas City. Chiefs defensive end Alex Okafor (hip) and linebacker Damien Wilson (concussion) left in the fourth quarter of the win at Detroit. ... Houston wide receiver Kenny Stills injured his hamstring on the last play of the first quarter against Carolina and didn’t return.
“It was terrible. We’ve got to do better ... I don’t really have any answers. I’ve got to go back and watch the film. I have to start like right now.” — Houston coach Bill O’Brien after the Texans struggled on offense in a 16-10 loss to Carolina.
“You’re 0-4 and you’ve got two options: You can hang your head and feel sorry for yourself or you can come out and battle your (butt) off next week, which I know we will. It’s unfortunate. Nobody saw this coming, starting the season like this. I sure didn’t, but here we are. Reality has set in.” — Washington coach Jay Gruden after the Redskins dropped to 0-4 with a 24-4 loss to the New York Giants.
“If one of us did that to 12, we wouldn’t have been in the game anymore,” Buffalo safety Micah Hyde, referring to Tom Brady’s number after New England’s Jonathan Jones drew only a personal foul for unnecessary roughness and wasn’t also ejected from the game after his helmet-to-helmet hit on Bills quarterback Josh Allen.