Sunday’s NFL roundup: Defense leads Vikings to 8th straight win

Associated Press
Anthony Barr and the rest of the Minnesota Vikings defense made things difficult for quarterback Matt Ryan of the Atlanta Falcons, who threw for just 173 yards in a 14-9 loss.

Atlanta — The Vikings frustrated Matt Ryan, blanketed Julio Jones and kept the Falcons out of the end zone.

Minnesota’s eighth straight victory was all about defense.

Case Keenum threw a pair of touchdown passes, including the go-ahead score on the first play of the fourth quarter, and the Vikings extended their winning streak to eight in a row Sunday with a grind-it-out, 14-9 victory over the Falcons.

“It was a hard one,” coach Mike Zimmer said. “We’ve got a good bunch of fighters on this football team, and I think maybe they really believe now.”

The Falcons (7-5) were held without a TD for the first time since Dec. 13, 2015, when they were blanked 38-0 by Carolina . Ryan’s streak of 30 straight games with a TD pass also ended.

“They are a very good defense,” Ryan said.

More NFL games

(At) Seattle 24, Philadelphia 10: Russell Wilson threw three touchdown passes, the last a 15-yard strike to J.D. McKissic with 7:29 left, and the Seahawks stayed in the NFC playoff hunt.

Seattle (8-4) snapped Philadelphia’s nine-game winning streak thanks largely to another masterful performance by its quarterback. Wilson was 20 of 31 for 227 and threw touchdowns of 11 yards to Jimmy Graham, 1-yard to Tyler Lockett and the TD to McKissic after the Eagles had trimmed the lead to seven.

Philadelphia (10-2) was the highest-scoring team in the NFL averaging 31.9 points per game. But the Eagles got just 10 points out of seven drives that at some point reached Seattle territory.

Carson Wentz was 29 of 45 for 348 yards with one touchdown and one interception. Wentz had a costly fumble at the Seattle 1 on the opening drive of the second half that could have pulled the Eagles even.

New England 23, (at) Buffalo 3: Rex Burkhead scored twice and the Patriots won their eighth straight.

Patriots tight end Rob Gronkowski was accused of making a dirty hit after pile-driving shoulder-first into the back of the head of Bills cornerback Tre’Davious White, who was laying on the field after making an interception with 4:50 remaining.

Jets quarterback Josh McCown, right, celebrates his touchdown with Brian Winters.

(At) N.Y. Jets 38, Kansas City 31: Josh McCown scored on a 1-yard quarterback sneak with 2:15 left, and the Jets bounced back from a brutal start.

Chandler Catanzaro kicked a 21-yard field goal to put the Jets (5-7) ahead with 3:55 left. But Kansas City’s Bennie Logan was called for a personal foul for hitting long snapper Thomas Hennessy on the play. That gave the Jets the ball at the 1 with a new set of downs.

Three plays later, McCown kept the ball and shoved his way into the end zone.

(At) Tennessee 24, Houston 13: LeShaun Sims intercepted a pass intended for DeAndre Hopkins in the end zone with 1:02 left, and the Titans stayed atop the AFC South.

Marcus Mariota also ran for a touchdown and threw for another.

The Titans (8-4) won their second straight and sixth of their past seven. They improved to 4-1 in the AFC South to stay ahead of Jacksonville, a winner over Indianapolis.

(At) Jacksonville 30, Indianapolis 10: Blake Bortles threw two touchdown passes, Leonard Fournette scored for the first time in six weeks and the Jaguars swept the series for the second time since they joined the AFC South in 2002. The Jaguars (8-4) reached eight wins for the first time since 2010.

Fournette finished with 57 yards on 20 carries and limped off the field with an ankle injury late in the third quarter, but went untouched for a 5-yard score to open the second half.

L.A. Rams 32, (at) Arizona 16: Jared Goff passed for two touchdowns, Los Angeles took advantage of two early interceptions thrown by Blaine Gabbert, and the Rams solidified their grip on first place in the NFC West.

The Rams (9-3) won for the sixth time in seven games to clinch their first winning season since 2003 when they were in St. Louis. They took the season series with the Cardinals for only the second time in the last 14 years and first since 2012.

(At) Miami 35, Denver 9: Xavien Howard’s 30-yard interception return for a touchdown highlighted a dominating defensive effort by the Dolphins, and they ended a five-game losing streak.

The Broncos (3-9) lost their eighth in a row.

Miami (5-7) scored two safeties in a game for the first time in franchise history.

(At) Oakland 24, N.Y. Giants 17: Marshawn Lynch had a 51-yard touchdown run and recorded his first 100-yard rushing game since coming out of retirement to lead the Raiders in New York’s first game without Eli Manning starting in 13 years.

Oakland (6-6) moved into a three-way tie for first place in the AFC West with Kansas City and the Chargers.

Geno Smith lost two fumbles for the Giants (2-10).

(At) L.A. Chargers 19, Cleveland 10: Philip Rivers passed for 344 yards and hit Keenan Allen for a touchdown, and the surging Chargers moved into a tie for first place in the AFC West. Allen had 10 catches for 105 yards in his third straight big game for the Chargers (6-6), who have won six of eight.

San Francisco 15, (at) Chicago 14: Robbie Gould kicked a 24-yard field goal in the closing seconds and Jimmy Garoppolo threw for 293 yards in his first San Francisco start.

Gould made five field goals in his first appearance at Soldier Field since Chicago cut him in 2016.

Tarik Cohen returned a punt 61 yards for a touchdown. That made him the first NFL rookie with rushing, receiving, passing and punt return TDs in a season since Gale Sayers in 1965.