The Latest: Seattle’s Thomas up to his old tricks vs. Dallas
The Latest on the third Sunday of the NFL regular season (all times EDT):
Seattle’s Earl Thomas has quickly made his presence known.
Thomas made a remarkable interception midway through the first quarter of the Seahawks’ matchup with the Cowboys, pinning a deflected pass from quarterback Dak Prescott against his shin and keeping the ball from hitting the ground.
Thomas’ status for the game was in doubt after he missed two days of practice for personal reasons this week.
Seattle coach Pete Carroll was vague about Thomas’ situation as rumors continued to swirl about his long-term future with the team. Thomas held out of training camp while seeking contract security beyond this season.
Jared Goff and the Rams’ offense are off to a sizzling start in the crosstown showdown with the Chargers.
The Rams took a 14-6 lead heading into the second quarter after three lengthy drives led by Goff, who went 13 of 14 for 141 yards. Goff patiently carved up the Chargers’ defense, which is missing star pass-rusher Joey Bosa, on TD drives ending in Todd Gurley’s 1-yard run and Robert Woods’ 3-yard TD catch.
The Bolts answered with a brilliant 42-yard TD reception by Mike Williams.
— Greg Beacham reporting from Los Angeles.
Three more players make demonstrations during the national anthem prior to the afternoon games.
Chargers left tackle Russell Okung raised his right fist during the anthem before their game against the Rams. Okung has made the gesture at every game this season.
Seahawks offensive tackle Duane Brown and defensive Quinton Jefferson went into the locker room for the anthem prior to their game with the Cowboys and came out as soon as it finished.
During the early afternoon games, Dolphins receivers Kenny Stills and Albert Wilson kneeled during the national anthem before their team’s game against the Raiders, and defensive end Robert Quinn raised his right fist.
49ers quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo has been knocked out of their game against Kansas City late in the fourth quarter after taking a wicked shot from cornerback Steven Nelson along the sideline.
Garoppolo could have stepped out of bounds, but instead he ducked back inside and took a hard shoulder-to-shoulder blow right on his own throwing shoulder.
He remained on the field for about a minute before he was helped to the sideline.
C.J. Beathard took over facing fourth-and-goal at the Kansas City 7 with the 49ers trailing 38-24 and 5:35 left. He appeared to throw a TD pass to George Kittle, but it was wiped out by offensive pass interference, and San Francisco wound up kicking a field goal instead.
— Dave Skretta reporting from Kansas City
Matt Ryan has set a new personal single-game record with his fifth touchdown pass against the Saints. The five scoring passes ties a team record set by Wade Wilson.
Ryan’s scoring pass to Mohamed Sanu, followed by his 2-point conversion pass to Sanu, gave the Falcons a 37-30 lead midway through the fourth quarter.
The play came after Saints defensive tackle David Onyemata was called for unnecessary roughness when Atlanta’s Matt Bryant kicked a 29-yard field goal that would have given the Falcons a 32-30 lead. With the penalty, the Falcons’ offense came back on the field.
— Charles Odum reporting from Atlanta.
Packers linebacker Clay Matthews has been called for roughing the passer on a sack on Redskins QB Alex Smith — and there are sure to be more questions about what constitutes a penalty on such plays.
Matthews broke in alone on Smith in the third quarter, wrapped him and brought him down. Matthews immediately put his arms up and slapped himself in the helmet as the flag was thrown. Packers coach Mike McCarthy argued with two officials about the call, even chasing one along the sideline as he backpedaled away.
In last week’s tie against the Vikings, a potentially win-sealing interception for the Packers was wiped out by a roughing call on Matthews when he hit Kirk Cousins.
The rule preventing defenders from landing on the quarterback has been around since 1995, but the league’s competition committee made it a point of emphasis this year. More than 30 roughing-the-passer penalties were called in this season’s first two weeks.
Indianapolis Colts kicker Adam Vinatieri has matched Morten Andersen for most field goals in NFL history with 565.
Vinatieri needed three field goals Sunday against the Philadelphia Eagles to tie the record. The 45-year-old Vinatieri kicked field goals of 35 and 31 yards in the third quarter to give the Colts a 13-10 lead. Vinatieri matched the mark early in the fourth with a 28-yarder and a 16-13 lead.
Vinatieri had three fields goals this season coming into the game.
Vinatieri was already the NFL’s postseason record holder for scoring (234) and field goals (56); and he hit two Super Bowl winners in the final minute. He’s won four Super Bowl rings and was the only unanimous selection on the Super Bowl 50 Golden Team.
He made 263 field goals in 10 years with the New England Patriots and has 302 with the Colts.
Calvin Ridley has become the first rookie with three touchdown catches in a game in Falcons history.
Ridley’s first career game with more than one touchdown catch comes on his first game with at least 100 yards receiving.
His third scoring catch against the Saints was a 9-yarder early in the third quarter that held up following a review.
Bengals wide receiver A.J. Green has left the game against Carolina with a groin injury. The Bengals have changed his status to return to questionable, after initially reporting he was probable to return.
Green, who had three TD catches last week against Baltimore, has five catches for 58 yards in the game, which the Bengals trail 21-14.
The 49ers have lost star cornerback Richard Sherman to a calf injury, the third defensive back to get banged up in their game against Kansas City.
That’s hardly going to help against Patrick Mahomes, who was already torching the 49ers defense.
Starting safety Adrian Colbert left with a hip injury in the second quarter, and backup cornerback Tarvarius Moore left earlier in the game with a wrist injury.
Another starting safety, Jaquiski Tartt, was inactive with a shoulder injury and cornerback Greg Mabin was also inactive. That means the 49ers are severely depleted in the defensive backfield
— Dave Skretta reporting from Kansas City
Green Bay Packers defensive lineman Muhammad Wilkerson covered his face mask with both hands as he was carted off the field with an ankle injury late in the first half against the Washington Redskins.
A teammate rolled up on Wilkerson’s legs at the end of a running play. Wilkerson immediately grabbed his left leg, then stayed on the ground on a rainy afternoon.
The 28-year-old Wilkerson was a first-round draft pick of the New York Jets in 2011.
He is in his first season with the Packers.
The Chiefs’ Patrick Mahomes has set the NFL record for touchdown passes through three weeks , and he still has another half to go against San Francisco.
Mahomes threw TD passes to Chris Conley and Demetrius Harris before finding Sammy Watkins on a slant route with 34 seconds left before halftime to give the Chiefs a 35-7 lead.
Mahomes has 13 TD passes this season. Peyton Manning had the record of 12 set in 2013.
Making his first start at Arrowhead Stadium, Mahomes is 17 of 25 for 252 yards and three touchdowns. Eight different targets have receptions.
— Dave Skretta reporting from Kansas City
Denver rookie running back Phillip Lindsay has been ejected for throwing a punch.
The penalty occurred during a scramble for a fumble by Broncos quarterback Case Keenum. While the players were scrambling to get the loose ball, Lindsay took a swing at a Ravens player.
Lindsay is the first undrafted rookie in NFL history to top 100 yards from scrimmage in each of his first two games.
In this one, he has 20 yards on four carries.
Drew Brees set the NFL record for career completions with his 17-yarder to Michael Thomas in the second quarter against Atlanta. The completion was the 6,301st of Brees’ career, surpassing the 6,300 thrown by Hall of Famer Brett Favre.
Brees set the NFL’s single-season completion record when he finished last season with 481 after a Jan. 1 game, also played in Atlanta. That broke his mark of 468, set in 2011.
__ Matt Winklejohn reporting from Atlanta
The Buffalo Bills, who entered the game as 16½-point underdogs, have built a stunning 27-0 lead on the Minnesota Vikings.
The crowd at U.S. Bank Stadium, where the Vikings have seven straight games and are 14-4 since the building opened, has been booing the home team repeatedly throughout an abysmal first half.
Of the last 80 teams in the NFL who entered the game as underdogs of 16 points or more, only five won their games.
Kirk Cousins has lost two fumbles on sacks deep in Minnesota territory. Buffalo rookie Josh Allen has rushed for two touchdowns and thrown for another score.
— Dave Campbell reporting from Minneapolis
Washington Redskins quarterback Alex Smith’s streak of consecutive passes without an interception is over after 156 attempts, the longest active such run in the NFL.
Smith was picked off by Green Bay Packers safety Ha Ha Clinton-Dix in the second quarter Sunday. The throw was intended for tight end Jordan Reed, but he broke inside and the football went outside, where Clinton-Dix was waiting for the easy play.
The Redskins were leading 14-3 at the time.
Smith hadn’t been intercepted since Dec. 10, 2017, when he was playing for the Kansas City Chiefs against the Oakland Raiders.
Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes has thrown his first touchdown pass of the afternoon, capping a 75-yard drive by scrambling all over the field and finding Chris Conley in the back of the end zone.
Kansas City has TDs on each of its possessions and leads San Francisco 21-7.
Mahomes had 10 touchdown passes through the first two weeks. He is now tied with Tom Brady (2011) for second-most TD passes through three games. Peyton Manning set the record with 12 in 2013.
—Dave Skretta reporting from Kansas City
Dolphins receivers Kenny Stills and Albert Wilson kneeled during the national anthem before their team’s game against the Raiders, and defensive end Robert Quinn raised his right fist.
All three have staged similar protests before their team’s other games this season.
The displays by Miami’s players were the only demonstrations identified by Associated Press reporters during the national anthem before Sunday’s early games.
Raiders receiver Jordy Nelson has 139 yards on three receptions against the Dolphins, and they’ve played only one quarter.
Miami missed injured safety Reshad Jones from the start, with rookie replacement Minkah Fitzpatrick burned on the second play when Nelson turned a short pass over the middle into a 61-yard gain. That set up Nelson’s 12-yard touchdown catch, again over the middle.
On the Raiders’ next possession, Nelson beat Bobby McCain deep for a 66-yard gain, before Miami made a goal-line stand.
Marcus Mariota is in at quarterback for the Tennessee Titans.
Blaine Gabbert left the Titans’ game with Jacksonville in the first quarter and is being evaluated for a concussion after a helmet-to-helmet hit by defensive tackle Malik Jackson. Jackson was flagged on the play.
Gabbert walked off the field under his own power and went inside the medical tent for treatment. He then could be seen heading to the locker room.
Mariota missed last week’s game because of an elbow injury that affects the velocity and spin of his passes.
Carson Wentz threw a touchdown pass for the Eagles in his first drive since December.
Wentz completed five passes for 55 yards on Philadelphia’s opening drive and connected with Dallas Goedert for a 13-yard touchdown. All five receptions on the drive were made by tight ends.
Wentz played for the first time since he tore his ACL and LCL in Week 14 diving into the end zone on a scramble. He wore a brace on his left knee on a soggy day in Philadelphia.
Wentz tweeted hours before the game: “My God has been faithful & my source of strength through all the highs and lows. What a journey these past 9 months have been. Finally getting back on that field and I can’t thank the Lord enough! I know the Linc is gonna be rockin so let’s have some fun today.”
Sure enough, fans in Wentz jerseys went wild when the QB ran onto the field.
Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes is off to another solid start in his first regular-season game at Arrowhead Stadium.
Mahomes, who is 3-0 as the starter with all his wins on the road, led the Chiefs to a touchdown drive to open their game against San Francisco. He was 4 of 7 for 48 yards, and converted a fourth-and-inches by keeping it on an option and taking a big shot from a 49ers defender.
Kareem Hunt finished the drive with a touchdown plunge to give Kansas City a 7-0 lead.
— Dave Skretta reporting from Kansas City
Ray Lewis returned to his home stadium for a celebration marking his entry into the NFL Hall of Fame.
After the Ravens were introduced before their game against Denver, the song “Hot in Herre” by Nelly boomed over the PA.
Lewis emerged from the tunnel wearing his yellow Hall of Fame jacket and did his trademark dance while the soggy crowd cheered.
The city of Baltimore held a parade for Lewis on Saturday. He’s the second member of the Ravens to enter the Hall of Fame, joining Jonathan Ogden.
The Cincinnati Bengals are joining in support of relief efforts for those affected by Hurricane Florence, which has devastated the Carolinas.
The Bengals, like the Panthers, will wear stickers that read “One Carolina” on the back of their helmets for Sunday’s game in Charlotte, North Carolina.
The Bengals said on Twitter “we send our well wishes to all who were affected.”
Dana Outlaw, the mayor of New Bern, North Carolina —an area hit particularly hard by the hurricane— received an invite from Panthers coach Ron Rivera to hit the team’s “Keep Pounding” drum before the game.
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