The Seattle Seahawks' flawless start to the NFL season came to an end in dramatic fashion against the Arizona Cardinals, while Tom Brady made history in the Tampa Bay Buccaneers' crushing win over the Las Vegas Raiders.

Arizona converted a field goal with only seconds remaining in overtime as the Cardinals completed a thrilling 37-34 comeback win over the previously unbeaten Seahawks on Sunday.

Brady surpassed New Orleans Saints counterpart Drew Brees for a league record, while Super Bowl champions the Kansas City Chiefs and San Francisco 49ers also won.

 

CARDINALS SOAR AS SEAHAWKS FALL

In one of the games of the season, the Cardinals triumphed thanks to Zane Gonzalez's field goal with 15 seconds remaining in Arizona.

The Seahawks – led by MVP candidate Russell Wilson – appeared on track to improve to 6-0, having led 27-17 at half-time and 34-24 heading into the final three minutes of regulation.

But the Cardinals rallied – Kyler Murray's eight-yard pass to Christian Kirk reducing the deficit to three points before Gonzalez converted a 44-yard field goal to force OT.

Gonzalez had the chance to settle the contest with a field goal early in OT but missed, however, the Cardinals kicker redeemed himself at the death.

Murray finished 34-of-48 for 360 yards, three touchdowns and an interception, while Wilson was 33-of-50 for 388 yards, three TDs and as many interceptions.

In a remarkable showdown, Seattle wide receiver DK Metcalf produced a sensational chase-down, delivering a touchdown-saving tackle on Budda Baker's 90-yard interception return in the second quarter.

 

RECORD-SETTING BRADY INSPIRES BUCS

Bucs quarterback Brady moved top of the NFL's all-time list for touchdown passes after leading Tampa Bay to a 45-20 rout of the Raiders.

Brady replaced Brees for the most TD passes in league history with his throw to Tyler Johnson in the fourth quarter.

A six-time Super Bowl champion, Brady eclipsed Brees' record with his 559th career touchdown pass, one ahead of his Saints counterpart.

Brady completed 33 of 45 passes for 369 yards and four touchdowns, with no interceptions or sacks against the Raiders (3-3) as NFC South leaders the Buccaneers improved to 5-2 for the season.

Rob Gronkowski, Scotty Miller – who finished with 109 yards – Chris Godwin and Johnson all connected with Brady for TDs, while Raiders QB Derek Carr was 24-of-36 for 284 yards, two touchdowns, an interception and three sacks.

 

CHIEFS TAKE DOWN BRONCOS, 49ERS THRASH NEWTON'S PATS

Patrick Mahomes and the Chiefs were too good for the Broncos, winning 43-16 on the road.

Played in snow, the Chiefs (6-1) led 24-9 at half-time and never looked back as they claimed their 10th consecutive victory over AFC West rivals the Broncos (2-4).

Mahomes extended his NFL-leading streak to 17 successive games with a touchdown throw, finishing 15-of-23 for 200 yards and a touchdown, while Le'Veon Bell impressed on debut after rushing for 39 yards on six carries.

It was a forgettable outing for Cam Newton and the New England Patriots, who were easily beaten 33-6 by the 49ers in Foxborough.

Newton – who was nine-of-15 for 98 yards – threw three interceptions and was replaced in the fourth quarter as the Patriots slumped to their third consecutive loss.

Former Patriots QB Jimmy Garoppolo enjoyed his return to New England, where the 49ers star was 20-of-25 for 277 yards, no touchdowns and two interceptions.

"It was a cool week," Garoppolo said. "Just a lot of emotions, a lot of memories. Especially coming back here, seeing the same stadium, hearing the same songs they used to play, a lot of memories came back ... But it was a fun night.

"Couldn't imagine it going any better than this."

Meanwhile, Justin Herbert threw three touchdowns as the Los Angeles Chargers defeated the Jacksonville Jaguars 39-29.

 

Week 7 scores:

Philadelphia Eagles 22-21 New York Giants
Pittsburgh Steelers 27-24 Tennessee Titans
Washington Football Team 25-3 Dallas Cowboys
Buffalo Bills 18-10 New York Jets
New Orleans Saints 27-24 Carolina Panthers
Green Bay Packers 35-20 Houston Texans
Cleveland Browns 37-34 Cincinnati Bengals
Detroit Lions 23-22 Atlanta Falcons
Tampa Bay Buccaneers 45-20 Las Vegas Raiders
San Francisco 49ers 33-6 New England Patriots
Kansas City Chiefs 43-16 Denver Broncos
Los Angeles Chargers 39-29 Jacksonville Jaguars
Arizona Cardinals 37-34 Seattle Seahawks (OT)

There was concern for Odell Beckham Jr. after he sustained a knee injury in the Cleveland Browns' tight win over the Cincinnati Bengals.

Beckham had to be taken off in the first quarter following an injury as the Browns star tried to make a tackle after quarterback Baker Mayfield – who turned in a remarkable performance – threw an interception with his first pass, though Cleveland prevailed 37-34.

Elsewhere, the Pittsburgh Steelers came out on top in an NFL contest between two 5-0 teams, seeing off the Tennessee Titans 27-24 on Sunday.

 

CONCERN FOR BECKHAM BUT MAYFIELD SHINES

Mayfield went on to star for the Browns, but his first pass was a dreadful one, as he picked out the Bengals' Darius Phillips rather than wide receiver Beckham – it was the second game in succession that Cleveland's quarterback has seen his opening pass intercepted.

In an attempt to recover, Beckham lunged into a tackle, but ultimately suffered an injury which NFL sources suggest could be serious. The Bengals pounced on the pick with a drive that ended with a touchdown run for quarterback Joe Burrow.

Yet Mayfield – who came in for criticism after a poor display against the Steelers last week – overcame his bad start to run the show for the Bengals.

Having gone 0 for 5, Mayfield subsequently completed the next 22 of 23 attempted passes. His final throw was met brilliantly by Donovan People-Jones in the end zone, securing the win for the Browns with 15 seconds remaining.

It was a fifth touchdown throw of a frantic game for Mayfield, who said afterwards: "What criticism? What are you talking about?"

Cincinnati rookie Burrow was the other star performer, landing 35 of 47 passes for a season-high 406 yards and three touchdowns, but his team's defense was no match for a fired-up Mayfield, who finished with 297 yards and five touchdowns.

STEELERS STAY PERFECT THANKS TO GOSTOWKSI MISS

Stephen Gostkowski missed a 45-yard field goal with 19 seconds left on the clock as the Steelers held firm to secure a three-point triumph over the Titans, ending their opponents' winning start while preserving their perfect record.

Led by the excellent Ben Roethlisberger, who went 32 of 49 passing for 268 yards, two touchdowns and three interceptions, the Steelers started well.

An opening-drive touchdown snapped a 23-game streak without one and the Steelers kept up the momentum in the second quarter with Benny Snell going over.

Corey Davis responded for the Titans, though Chris Boswell nosed Pittsburgh further ahead before Roethlisberger picked out Diontae Johnson for their third touchdown.

Boswell converted a 30-yard field goal to make it 27-7 at the start of the third quarter, and those points proved vital as the Titans mounted a comeback.

With Derrick Henry – who finished on 75 running yards – racing into the end zone late on, the chance to level things up fell to kicker Gostkowski, only for the veteran campaigner to slice wide.

Pittsburgh (6-0) top the AFC North, with the Browns (5-2) in third and Bengals (1-5) fourth. 

COWBOYS ANOTHER QUARTERBACK DOWN AFTER HEAVY WASHINGTON DEFEAT

The Dallas Cowboys failed to overcome the third-quarter loss of quarterback Andy Dalton as they went down 25-3 to the Washington Football Team.

Dalton exited after taking a shot to the head, with Washington linebacker Jon Bostic ejected for the hit.

Dallas' back-up quarterback, making his second start in place of the injured Dak Prescott, was ruled out with concussion, and head coach Mike McCarthy was infuriated with how his team reacted to Dalton's injury, with no players confronting Bostic.

"We speak all the time about playing for one another, protecting one another. It definitely was not the response you would expect," McCarthy told reporters. 

The Cowboys and Washington are now tied on 2-5 in an open NFC East, which is topped by the Philadelphia Eagles.

Meanwhile, Drew Brees completed 29 passes for 287 yards and two touchdowns as the New Orleans Saints beat the Carolina Panthers 27-24 to move top of the NFC South.

The Buffalo Bills claimed an 18-10 win over the struggling New York Jets, and the Green Bay Packers are now 5-1 after a convincing 35-20 victory against the Houston Texans, who have just one win to their name in 2020.

Also 1-6 are the Atlanta Falcons, who went down by one point to the Detroit Lions.

 

Week 7 scores:

Philadelphia Eagles 22-21 New York Giants
Pittsburgh Steelers 27-24 Tennessee Titans
Washington Football Team 25-3 Dallas Cowboys
Buffalo Bills 18-10 New York Jets
New Orleans Saints 27-24 Carolina Panthers
Green Bay Packers 35-20 Houston Texans
Cleveland Browns 37-34 Cincinnati Bengals
Atlanta Falcons 22-21 Detroit Lions

Tom Brady got the better of Aaron Rodgers in the most high-profile game of an NFL Sunday that also saw the Pittsburgh Steelers and Tennessee Titans move to 5-0.

The Seattle Seahawks are the only undefeated team remaining in the NFC after Brady and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers recovered from a poor start to earn an emphatic 38-10 win over the Green Bay Packers.

Pittsburgh crushed divisional rivals the Cleveland Browns, while the Titans needed overtime to win a wild encounter against the Houston Texans in an AFC South battle.

With all but two Week 6 games now played, we reflect on the best statistics from another thrilling slate.

Brady and Gronk connection is back

The Bucs defense played its part against the Packers, but it was also a decent game from Brady, who had a 104.9 passer rating (166 yards, two TDs).

Rob Gronkowski had a slow beginning to his 2020 NFL return, but he was targeted on eight occasions this time, hauling in five catches for 78 yards (47 per cent of Brady's total) and a touchdown.

Brady and Gronk have now combined for 91 TDs, including postseason play, with this score seeing them surpass Philip Rivers and Antonio Gates for third on the all-time list for a QB-receiver pairing.

Steve Young and Jerry Rice (92) are next in their sights, though they have some way to go to catch Peyton Manning and Marvin Harrison (114).

With starting tight end O. J. Howard out for the season, a resurgent Gronk in addition to star receivers Mike Evans and Chris Godwin should keep Brady and the 4-2 Bucs firing.

Rivers bounces back

Philip Rivers had made an underwhelming start with the Indianapolis Colts, so he needed a big performance and duly delivered one as his team rallied to beat the Cincinnati Bengals 31-27.

The 38-year-old recorded 371 passing yards and three touchdowns with one interception as receiver Marcus Johnson (five catches, 108 yards) enjoyed a big game.

It was the 30th time Rivers produced a 300-yard game with at least three TDs, only the sixth player to reach that milestone behind quarterback greats Drew Brees (67), Brady (51), Manning (46) and Rodgers (36).

Titans make history

The Titans' thrilling 42-36 win over Houston saw Ryan Tannehill throw for 364 yards (four TDs and one INT), while Derrick Henry rushed for 212 yards (two TDs), including an epic 94-yard score.

As a result, they became the first team in NFL history with a 350+ yard passer and a 200+ yard rusher in the same game.

Henry's 264 yards from scrimmage (he had 52 receiving yards) was a career-high and he became the first player to record a 200+ yard rushing game in three consecutive seasons.

He also equalled the record for rushing touchdowns of at least 90 yards (two), as well as drawing level with O.J. Simpson and Barry Sanders with five rushing scores of 70+ yards.

Only Adrian Peterson and Chris Johnson (both seven) have more in that category.

Patriots stumble without Brady

Life after Brady was never going to be easy for the New England Patriots, but few would have expected them to lose 18-12 at home to the Denver Broncos.

They lost despite the returning Drew Lock throwing two poor interceptions in the fourth quarter, while the victorious Broncos did not score a touchdown in the game.

Lock became only the second QB to defeat the Pats under Bill Belichick in a road game while throwing multiple interceptions, joining Hall of Famer Kurt Warner, who did so in Week 10 of the 2001 season when he won the MVP award.

New England dropped to 2-3, so are now below .500 through five games for the first time since 2001, the year Brady went on to win his first Super Bowl.

The Pats' streak of 18 straight seasons above .500 after five weeks of play had been the longest in NFL history.

Year of the comeback

The Colts' win saw them come from 21-0 down, while the Bucs were in a 10-point hole before recovering to beat the Packers.

Those games continued a 2020 trend of dramatic fightbacks and this is the first-ever NFL season where at least one team has won after being at least 16 points down in each of the first six weeks.

Nineteen games have seen comebacks of 10 or more points, tying the records set through Week 6 from the 2011 and 1987 campaigns.

The Colts' remarkable victory, though, was the first time since Week 1 of the 2016 season that a team has recovered from as many as 21 behind. 

The last occasion had seen the Kansas City Chiefs trail 24-3 before fighting back to win 33-27 in overtime against the Chargers, who then represented San Diego.

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers handed the Green Bay Packers their first loss of the NFL season, while Tua Tagovailoa made his debut as the Miami Dolphins thrashed the New York Jets.

Tom Brady and Aaron Rodgers went head-to-head, and the Buccaneers came out on top at Raymond James Stadium on Sunday.

In Florida, the Dolphins blew out the Jets, leaving New York 0-6 and putting further pressure on under-fire head coach Adam Gase.

In the last game of the day, the San Francisco 49ers bounced back from consecutive losses by beating the Los Angeles Rams.

 

DEAN SPARKS BUCCANEERS AGAINST PACKERS

With the Buccaneers trailing 10-0, Jamel Dean's pick-six of Rodgers sparked Tampa Bay on the way to a 38-10 victory.

The Buccaneers scored 38 consecutive points, with Brady throwing touchdown passes to Tyler Johnson and Rob Gronkowski in the second quarter.

Brady completed 17 of 27 passes for 166 yards and the two TDs.

The quarterback connected with former New England Patriots team-mate Gronkowski for their 79th TD. They are tied for the fourth most by a duo in NFL history, alongside Dan Marino and Mark Clayton, as per NFL Research. Only Peyton Manning-Marvin Harrison, Philip Rivers-Antonio Gates and Steve Young-Jerry Rice are ahead of them.

Packers star Rodgers threw two interceptions and was sacked four times, finishing with just 160 passing yards after completing 16 of 35.

 

MORE MISERY FOR JETS AS TUA DEBUTS

Tagovailoa, the fifth pick in the 2020 NFL Draft, came on for his debut in the Dolphins' 24-0 win over the struggling Jets.

He replaced Ryan Fitzpatrick, who had completed 18 of 27 passes for 191 yards, three TDs and two interceptions as the Dolphins improved to 3-3. Tagovailoa completed two passes for nine yards.

Under pressure at the helm of the Jets, Gase said his players were hurting.

"In this locker room, these guys are good guys that work extremely hard. It's frustrating when you talk to them on Monday and you can tell they're hurting," he said.

"They come in to work and do a good job and have high energy at practice. I feel the players are the ones who are trying to flip this thing, they're taking the lead on this. We've just got to keep grinding and find a way to fix these early mistakes to try and flip the game."

 

49ERS BOUNCE BACK

The 49ers improved to 3-3 courtesy of a 24-16 win over the Rams.

Jimmy Garoppolo threw three touchdown passes – to Deebo Samuel, George Kittle and Brandon Aiyuk – and completed 23 of 33 for 268 yards.

Kittle had 109 receiving yards for San Francisco, including a 44-yarder from Garoppolo for a TD in the second quarter.

Rams QB Jared Goff struggled, completing just 19 of 38 passes for 198 yards, to go with two TDs and an interception.

 

Week 6 scores:

Tennessee Titans 42-36 Houston Texans
Baltimore Ravens 30-28 Philadelphia Eagles
Atlanta Falcons 40-23 Minnesota Vikings
Pittsburgh Steelers 38-7 Cleveland Browns
Indianapolis Colts 31-27 Cincinnati Bengals 
Detroit Lions 34-16 Jacksonville Jaguars
Chicago Bears 23-16 Carolina Panthers
New York Giants 20-19 Washington Football Team
Denver Broncos 18-12 New England Patriots
Miami Dolphins 24-0 New York Jets
Tampa Bay Buccaneers 38-10 Green Bay Packers
San Francisco Giants 24-16 Los Angeles Rams

Tom Brady hailed Jamel Dean for the pick-six that "sparked" the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in their win over the Green Bay Packers.

With the Buccaneers trailing the Packers 10-0, Dean intercepted Aaron Rodgers and went 32 yards to score as Tampa Bay produced 38 unanswered points in a 38-10 victory.

Brady, who completed 17 of 27 passes for 166 yards and two touchdowns, praised Dean on Sunday.

"Jamel made a hell of play," the Buccaneers quarterback said. "He did that to us in training camp a few times.

"That was a huge play, sparked us, then we got another turnover, got the ball in, had a decent drive, got the ball in. It was good. I think not turning the ball over helped a lot. Not being behind on down and distance helped a lot.

"But certainly there are things we can do better than what we did today and we're going to keep working at it."

Brady connected with Tyler Johnson and Rob Gronkowski during the Buccaneers' 28-point second quarter.

Tampa Bay head coach Bruce Arians also said Dean's pick-six was the key for the Buccaneers, who are 4-2 and handed the Packers their first loss of the season.

"They came out with a pretty quick start and we kind of hung in there and then Dean made his play," he said.

"That kind of changed the whole momentum, I thought, in the whole stadium."

The Green Bay Packers suffered their first defeat of the NFL season at the hands of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and star quarterback Aaron Rodgers believes it is a necessary wake-up call for the franchise.

Green Bay carried a flawless 4-0 record into the Week 6 contest, but the Packers were upstaged by Tom Brady and the Buccaneers 38-10 on Sunday.

It was a forgettable day for the Packers at Raymond James Stadium, where two-time MVP Rodgers threw a pair of interceptions and a pick-six as he finished 16-of-35 for 160 yards without a touchdown.

"You don't ever want to lose like this," Rodgers said. "I felt like we needed a little bit of a wake-up call at some point this season because things have been so good and there's been so much talk maybe outside the building about the ease with which we're moving the ball on offense and scoring.

"I think we needed kind of a kick in the a*** a little bit. There's a little bit of wake-up to stop feeling ourselves so much and get back to the things that got us to this position. I think this would be, unfortunately but fortunately, something we can really grow from."

It was a rare pick-six for Super Bowl champion and MVP Rodgers, who had only been intercepted and returned for a score on two previous occasions in a stellar career dating back to 2005.

"That s*** happens," Rodgers, who was replaced by Tim Boyle late in the game, said. "I haven't had a lot of those over the years. But the wind was blowing pretty good right to left, and like I said, I felt good about the spot.

"I knew it was tight, we've hit throws like that, but I missed on my spot by probably a foot, or so. And the kid made a good play."

Rodgers – interception-free on his first 156 passes of the season before that run came to an end against the Bucs – added: "I don't feel like we ever got into a rhythm, or even the 10 points to start the game. We had off-scheduled plays to keep our drives alive. They deserve credit -- they got us out of our rhythm."

The Cleveland Browns and Pittsburgh Steelers will renew their fiery rivalry in Week 6 of the 2020 NFL season. 

Although neither team were in playoff contention last year, things got ugly between the AFC North rivals in their first meeting of 2019 when a fight broke out and Myles Garrett hit Mason Rudolph with his own helmet. 

The mood in both camps will be upbeat heading into Sunday's game at Heinz Field, though, as they have been victorious in each of their past four outings. 

A meeting of Cleveland's top-ranked rushing attack and the Pittsburgh's second-ranked run defense promises to serve up quite the contest. 

The Steelers have limited two of their first four opponents to fewer than 30 yards on the ground and allow 64.0 yards per game, while the Browns' average in rushing yards per game is almost three times that figure. 

The New England Patriots and Tennessee Titans are back in action after seeing games postponed by positive COVID-19 tests, while veteran quarterbacks Aaron Rodgers and Tom Brady will go toe to toe in Tampa. 

We use Stats Perform data to look ahead to another mouthwatering schedule.


FEATURE GAME

Cleveland Browns at Pittsburgh Steelers - Sunday, 1pm (all times Eastern)

- The Browns have scored 30 points in each of their past four games and their total of 150 in Weeks 2-5 were the most in the NFL. They lead the NFL in rushing (188.4 yards per game) and are fourth in stopping the run (87.0 yards per game).

- Pittsburgh are 4-0 for the first time since 1979 – the last Super Bowl-winning season of the Chuck Noll/Terry Bradshaw/Steel Curtain era. The season before that Pittsburgh started 7-0, also en route to the Lombardi Trophy.

- Ben Roethlisberger is 22-2-1 in 25 career starts versus the Browns, including 11-0 at Heinz Field. In addition, he came off the bench to pass for 379 yards in a home victory over Cleveland in 2015. He last faced the Browns in 2018, throwing four interceptions in two games.

OTHER KEY GAMES

Chicago Bears at Carolina Panthers – Sunday, 1pm

- Teddy Bridgewater's 73.0 completion percentage ranks second in the NFL behind Derek Carr (73.1 percent). The all-time single-season high for a Carolina quarterback is 68.0 percent by Cam Newton in 2018 (minimum 10 attempts).

Baltimore Ravens at Philadelphia Eagles – Sunday, 1pm

- Baltimore improved to 4-1 with a 27-3 win over the Cincinnati Bengals last week. The Ravens' +73-point differential leads the NFL and ranks second in franchise history through five games, behind only 2011 (+77).

Green Bay Packers at Tampa Bay Buccaneers – Sunday, 4.25pm

- Rodgers and Brady have split their head-to-head matchups 1-1, with the latter taking the most recent one in Foxborough back in 2018 (31-17). However, Rodgers is in strong form this year – he is just the fourth quarterback in the past 70 years to throw for at least 13 touchdowns without an interception through the first four games of a season (2018 Patrick Mahomes, 2013 Peyton Manning, 1966 Don Meredith).

Los Angeles Rams at San Francisco 49ers – Sunday, 8.20pm

- The Rams have nine rushing touchdowns this season, more than any other team in the NFL. Five different Rams players have run for a touchdown this season, with Darrell Henderson (3), Malcolm Brown (2) and Jared Goff (2) all doing so multiple times.

Kansas City Chiefs at Buffalo Bills – Monday, 5pm

- Mahomes suffered just his eighth defeat in 36 regular-season games as a starting quarter back in Week 5. He’s bounced back well after the first seven defeats, going 5-2 and throwing 18 touchdowns to just four interceptions following losses.

ELSEWHERE…

Denver Broncos at New England Patriots – Sunday, 1pm

- The Pats are 2-2 and in danger of falling below .500 in October or later for the first time since 2002. Their streak of 225 consecutive games in October or later without being below .500 (either before or after the game) is the longest streak in NFL history.

Arizona Cardinals at Dallas Cowboys – Monday, 8.15pm

- DeAndre Hopkins had six receptions for 131 yards in a 30-10 rout of the New York Jets in Week 5 and leads the NFL with 45 catches and 528 yards. Hopkins surpassed 9,000 career receiving yards in the win, becoming the fourth-youngest player in NFL history to do so at 28 years and 127 days old. Only Randy Moss (27 years, 310 days), Calvin Johnson (28-56) and Hopkins' team-mate Larry Fitzgerald (28 years, 81 days) got there at a younger age.

Tom Brady is relishing the chance to face Aaron Rodgers as the Tampa Bay Buccaneers prepare for Sunday's clash against the Green Bay Packers.

Brady and Rodgers have split their two head-to-head matchups, with the former New England Patriots quarterback winning the most recent one in 2018.

A six-time Super Bowl winner, Brady is excited to face the Packers star again at Raymond James Stadium.

"I always enjoy coming up against another great quarterback because you know those are the tough teams to beat because they're prepared," Brady told a news conference.

"They're going to play well on offense, they've got a very talented defense. It just means you can't make a lot of mistakes.

"I'm not defending Aaron, we've got a whole defense that's doing that but from my standpoint what does that mean? I can play a role in that by doing a job on offense so that a guy like that doesn't have his offense on the field trying to score points. You just can't give guys like that extra opportunity because they make you pay and they've had some games that weren't even close this year because there were turnovers in the game.

"They possessed the ball, they've got a great running game, he's completed 70 per cent of his passes so all of those things play into team football and we know what we're up against, we're up against one of the best teams in the league and we've got to go out there and play a great game if we're going to beat them."

The Buccaneers (3-2) are coming off a loss to the Chicago Bears, while the Packers (4-0) are one of four remaining undefeated teams in the NFL.

Asked about the importance of a big win early in the season, Brady said every game was an opportunity for the Buccaneers to build belief.

"Every time you win you develop confidence. Every time you lose you've got to look in the mirror and say, 'Is this good enough? Is what we're doing good enough?' Even when you win you do that," he said.

"For example, when you come back like we did against the [Los Angeles] Chargers, you believe that if you're behind you can do that. When you lead close games you have the belief that you can win close games.

"We've got to do that together. This is not, 'I've done this in the past' or 'You've done this in the past' or 'You did it at a different time'. This is, 'We've done this together and now we have the confidence that we can go into these situations and win'. Any time you play good teams you know that you're faced with that type of challenge." 

Aaron Rodgers is back to his scintillating best for the Green Bay Packers and, on Tuesday, he took aim at those who questioned him during the 2019 campaign.

Rodgers' superb start to the 2020 season has helped the Packers surge to a 4-0 record as they look to go one better than last campaign when they lost in the NFC Championship game.

Green Bay finished last year 13-3, though many believed the Packers were fortunate to reach that record, with Rodgers' transition to head coach Matt LaFleur's offense appearing far from seamless.

There can be no doubts the Packers' 4-0 start to this year is deserved, with Green Bay's points differential of plus 41 through four games the highest in the NFC.

Appearing on The Pat McAfee Show, Rodgers was asked if being in his second year of LaFleur's offense is an advantage compared to last year.

"It does help being in a second-year [offense] for sure, I feel a lot more comfortable," he replied.

"But … I sometimes laugh when people talk about down years for me, 'cause a lot of times down years for me are career years for most quarterbacks."

It is tough to dispute Rodgers' claim. Though his completion percentage in 2019 dipped to 62 - his worst performance in that category since 2015 - he still had 4,002 yards passing with 26 touchdowns and just four interceptions. His interception percentage of 0.7 was the best in the NFL.

Through four games this year, Rodgers is completing 70.5 per cent of his passes and has already racked up 1,214 yards and 13 touchdowns with zero interceptions. Additionally, he leads the league in adjusted net yards per attempt with an average of 10.13.

Aaron Rodgers' historic start to the 2020 NFL season continued as the Green Bay Packers moved to 4-0 with victory over the Atlanta Falcons.

After a dramatic offseason saw the Packers eschew help at wide receiver by drafting another quarterback, Jordan Love, in the first round, Rodgers has made a magnificent response to a move which put his future with the franchise into question.

He completed 27 of 33 passes as he threw for 327 yards, four touchdowns and zero interceptions in a 30-16 triumph against the winless Falcons at Lambeau Field on Monday.

Rodgers' performance came despite the continued absence of injured top wideout Davante Adams, while Allen Lazard, who had shone for the Packers in Week 3, was also out.

The 36-year-old's display moved him to 13 passing touchdowns in the first quarter of the season, the best total he has ever had through four weeks of any season.

Rodgers' previous best was in 2011, when he had 12 TDs through four weeks, and that season he led the Packers to a 15-1 record as well as winning the MVP award.

That comparison and his stellar play so far will have Packers fans dreaming big.

While they made the NFC Championship game and went 13-3 in 2019, a demoralising postseason loss to the San Francisco 49ers was followed by a confusing draft which did not prioritise immediate help for Rodgers.

That, along with a perception the QB may have moved beyond his peak, combined to lower the expectations of some coming into 2020, but Rodgers' revenge tour means the Packers and the Seattle Seahawks are now the only 4-0 teams in the conference.

The Packers have also joined the Seahawks in becoming the only team to score 30 or more points in each of their first four games. 

Just three other teams have done that in the last decade, and all of them went on to the Super Bowl, though that streak will now have to end this year with the Packers and Seahawks both coming out the NFC.

Robert Tonyan became the first undrafted Packers player in the Super Bowl era to score three receiving touchdowns and insisted he has not been at all surprised by Rodgers' spectacular exploits based on his mindset in the offseason.

"Before the season, I already knew it was going to happen," Tonyan said per ESPN after a game in which running back Aaron Jones caught Rodgers' other TD pass.

"I already knew it was going to happen. That's all I've got to say."

Along with his 13 TDs, Rodgers has 1,214 yards, a completion percentage of 70.5 and is yet to throw an interception in wins over the Minnesota Vikings, Detroit Lions, New Orleans Saints and Atlanta.

Despite his success, Rodgers has not enjoyed being without Adams due to the receiver's hamstring injury.

After their bye week, the Packers hope Adams can return for a huge Week 6 meeting against Tom Brady and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

"Not really; I'd rather have those guys," Rodgers said about whether he enjoys the challenge of playing with a weakened supporting cast. 

"I'd rather have us as healthy as possible but the beauty in this game is that's rarely the case, whether it's guys playing with injuries or guys who can't play because of injuries, and that's just part of the game."

After stepping up in the absence of key team-mates, Tonyan earned the praise of his quarterback, who added: "You love the opportunities for those other guys because a lot of them have really earned it.

"They have earned the opportunity to be out there, earned the opportunity to be in position to make plays. You get to learn a lot of about character and ability in those moments.

"You can't help but gain a lot of respect for [Tonyan]. He's a talented guy and it's a just a matter of time before a game like this happens."

The Bucs game will provide a blockbuster occasion to further assess the Packers' Super Bowl credentials, but if Rodgers' can maintain his record-setting start, few will be able to stop them.

New England Patriots’ stand-in quarterbacks combined for three interceptions as the Kansas City Chiefs maintained their perfect 4-0 start to the NFL season by cruising to a 26-10 victory on Monday.

The reigning Super Bowl champions scored 14 points from turnovers as New England suffered a myriad of offensive issues at Arrowhead Stadium with Cam Newton sidelined following a positive covid-19 test.

Patriots veteran Brian Hoyer stepped in and completed 15 of 24 passes for 130 yards and an interception, twice having the ball inside Kansas City’s 16-yard line without coming away with any points.

With the Patriots 6-3 behind and in short field-goal range, Hoyer was sacked by Frank Clark with seconds remaining to close out the first half, before the 34-year-old lost a fumble in the red zone to Taco Charlton.

Aaron Rodgers said the Green Bay Packers were always going to need to put up big numbers against Drew Brees and the star quarterback is enjoying the trust being shown by head coach Matt LaFleur.

The Packers defeated Brees' Saints 37-30 on the road at Mercedes-Benz Superdome on Sunday, with Rodgers passing for three touchdowns and 283 yards.

It means the Packers have gone 3-0 to start the NFL season and an in-form Rodgers is encouraged by the team's performances, especially against a team led by the quality Brees possesses.

"Any time you're playing a Drew Brees team you know you have to score, he's such a dynamic player," Rodgers said. 

"The two times we've played here before it felt like they put up 50 both times, I know they got 52 in one of them. 

"We knew the type of game [they would play], they've got a lot of playmakers and Drew obviously knows how to deal the ball.

"But right now, our offense, I feel really good about it. We got in a good flow, I feel like again Matt had a nice flow with the calls, we did a good job on third downs for the most part and were opportunistic with some big plays when we needed it.

"We got a lot of guys involved, had a number of guys catch passes and a number of guys we needed to play well played well."

Rodgers' scoring passes were recorded at five yards to Allen Lazard, 18 yards to Marcedes Lewis and one yard to Robert Tonyan.

The 36-year-old feels the team are being trusted to make the right decisions by second-year head coach LaFleur.

"I really like the timing on certain calls," Rodgers said. 

"Sometimes, you've got to kind of dig deep at certain times and hold on to something and trust the players. I really appreciate the flow that we had and the trust in us to make the plays."

The Saints are 1-2 from their three games and head coach Sean Payton admitted the team are not performing how they need to.

"We're not playing well enough. Let's not fool ourselves. We're making too many mistakes," Payton said. "We're not playing disciplined enough on both sides of the ball."

Tom Brady led the Tampa Bay Buccaneers to a comfortable NFL win, while the Green Bay Packers and Seattle Seahawks stayed unbeaten.

Brady's Bucs were largely untroubled by the Denver Broncos as they claimed a second straight win on Sunday.

Meanwhile, Russell Wilson made history for the red-hot Seattle Seahawks, who overcame the Dallas Cowboys.

Like Seattle, the Packers are 3-0 after holding off the New Orleans Saints.

 

BRADY LIFTS BUCCANEERS AFTER STRONG START

Brady threw three touchdown passes in the first half as the Buccaneers enjoyed a 28-10 win over the Broncos.

The six-time Super Bowl champion finished the game with 297 yards after completing 25 of 38 passes.

Brady threw two TD passes to Mike Evans in the second quarter, having found Chris Godwin with a 10-yard pass in the first.

"He [Evans] is a great red-area threat, and I think his size, his quickness, his elusiveness, his hands – everything," the QB said.

"Mike is one of the great receivers in the NFL so I've got to find ways to get him the ball and get him into space, not just in the red area but all over the field. It's my job to find the guys that are open and get it to them."

The Buccaneers are 2-1 and top of the NFC South.

 

SEAHAWKS, PACKERS STAY PERFECT

Wilson starred again as the Seahawks edged the Cowboys 38-31.

The quarterback threw five touchdown passes, including 315 yards on the back of 27 of 40 completed passes.

Wilson's 14 TD passes through the first three weeks of an NFL season are a record, eclipsing Kansas City Chiefs star Patrick Mahomes' 13 to begin 2018.

Aaron Rodgers and the Packers were too strong for the Saints 37-30.

Alvin Kamara brought the Saints level late in the third quarter after an incredible run following a pass from Drew Brees (completed 29 of 36 passes for 288 yards and three TDs).

But the Packers closed out victory in the fourth quarter, with Rodgers (21 of 32 for 283 yards and three TDs) and Robert Tonyan combining for a crucial TD.

 

LIONS HAND CARDINALS FIRST LOSS, JETS SLIP TO 0-3

Kyler Murray and the Arizona Cardinals fell to their first loss of the season, beaten by the Detroit Lions 26-23.

Murray, the top pick in the 2019 NFL Draft, had a difficult outing, intercepted three times. He finished 23 of 35 for 270 yards and two TDs.

Matt Prater kicked two fourth-quarter field goals for the Lions, including a 39-yarder as time expired.

The New York Jets fell to 0-3 after suffering a 36-7 loss to the Indianapolis Colts.

The Carolina Panthers recorded their first win of the season thanks to a 21-16 success over the Los Angeles Chargers.

 

Week 3 scores:

Chicago Bears 30-26 Atlanta Falcons
Buffalo Bills 35-32 Los Angeles Rams
Cleveland Browns 34-20 Washington Football Team
Tennessee Titans 31-30 Minnesota Vikings
New England Patriots 36-20 Las Vegas Raiders
San Francisco 49ers 36-9 New York Giants
Philadelphia Eagles 23-23 Cincinnati Bengals
Pittsburgh Steelers 28-21 Houston Texans
Indianapolis Colts 36-7 New York Jets
Carolina Panthers 21-16 Los Angeles Chargers
Detroit Lions 26-23 Arizona Cardinals
Tampa Bay Buccaneers 28-10 Denver Broncos
Seattle Seahawks 38-31 Dallas Cowboys
Green Bay Packers 37-30 New Orleans Saints

Patrick Mahomes and Lamar Jackson will do battle on Monday Night Football in Week 3 as the Kansas City Chiefs face the Baltimore Ravens.

Mahomes, the Super Bowl LIV MVP and 2018 season NFL MVP, and fellow quarterback Jackson, the 2019 season's NFL MVP, will hope to get the W that moves their team to 3-0.

That clash, one of a number of enticing Week 3 matchups, will provide an early indication of which franchise might be in the best shape to be the AFC's Super Bowl LV representative too.

Here, using Stats Perform data, we break down that game and the other top Week 3 showdowns.

 

FEATURE GAME

Chiefs at Ravens - Monday, 8.15pm (All times Eastern)

- There have been 13 games featuring the reigning and previous NFL MVPs starting against each other at the quarterback position (including playoffs). The reigning MVP has led his team to victory in eight of the last 10 such matchups, and is 8-5 overall.

- Mahomes hooked up with Tyreek Hill for a 54-yard touchdown in the win over the Los Angeles Chargers in Week 2. That was Mahomes' 11th career touchdown pass of 50-plus yards (most in the NFL since 2018). The Ravens as a team have only had nine such touchdowns since 2015, four coming from the arm of Jackson.

- The Chiefs are 6-3 against the Ravens, including wins in each of the three most recent matchups and they have a 4-1 record in Baltimore.

OTHER KEY GAMES

Texans at Steelers - Sunday, 1pm

- The Steelers are 2-0 for the seventh time since 2000. They made the playoffs in each of the previous six seasons, reaching three Super Bowls and winning two titles. Pittsburgh's last 3-0 start was in 2010, when the Steelers made their last trip to the Super Bowl.

Raiders at Patriots - Sunday, 1pm

- New England are tied for ninth in the NFL in rushing yards per game (142.0) and are eighth in passing offense (268.5 yards per game). They are one of three teams in the league's top 10 in both categories, joining the Green Bay Packers and Los Angeles Rams. In Sunday's loss at the Seattle Seahawks, Cam Newton passed for 397 yards, including 312 in the second half.

Rams at Bills - Sunday, 1pm

- Buffalo are attempting to start 3-0 for a second straight season, a feat they have accomplished only twice previously in franchise history (1964-65, 1991-92). The Bills have won 10 straight games since December 2018 when scoring 20 or more points, the longest active streak in the NFL. 

Cowboys at Seahawks - Sunday, 4.15pm 

- Dak Prescott enters this weekend with 99 career touchdown passes in 66 career games. With another touchdown pass on Sunday, Prescott would be the fastest Cowboy to reach 100 TD passes – Tony Romo currently holds the record at 79 games.

Packers at Saints - Sunday, 8.20pm

- Since 2018, Davante Adams - who could miss this game through injury - has accounted for 27.8 per cent of Green Bay's receiving yards, the fifth-highest mark in the NFL. The player with the highest percentage during this span is Saints star Michael Thomas (34.5 per cent), who is out this week with an ankle injury.

ELSEWHERE...

Titans at Vikings - Sunday, 1pm

- Ryan Tannehill threw for four touchdowns and no interceptions in the win over the Jacksonville Jaguars, extending his streak of regular season games with multiple touchdown passes to a franchise-record nine games. Tannehill has a 118.1 passer rating since joining Tennessee in 2019, the best mark in the NFL over that span (minimum 250 attempts).

Buccaneers at Broncos - Sunday, 4.25pm

- Melvin Gordon has tallied 148 rushing yards on 34 attempts this season, 124 more than the Broncos' next-leading rusher (Phillip Lindsay, 24). Gordon also has five receptions and has accounted for 41.9 per cent of the Broncos' touches this season, fifth highest in the NFL.

Two days after asserting he was "without a doubt" the NFL's best quarterback, Russell Wilson backed up his big words with a big primetime performance.

The New England Patriots could not prevent 'Mr Unlimited' from throwing a quintet of touchdown passes, to five different receivers, before a goal-line stand from the Seattle Seahawks defense at the death earned Pete Carroll's team a 35-30 victory.

Pats head coach Bill Belichick, who doesn't throw praise around lightly, had suggested in the build-up that Wilson - a man who has never had an MVP vote in his eight-and-a-bit-year career - was the league's finest QB, but do the numbers back that up? 

Using Stats Perform data, we took a look at how Wilson's regular season and postseason numbers compare to the NFL's other leading passers since Week 11 of 2018, when reigning MVP Lamar Jackson made his first start.

 

PASSER RATING - 111.0 (1st)

Only seven QBs have posted a combined passer rating above 100 in this time frame and Wilson leads a septet of Ryan Tannehill, Drew Brees, Patrick Mahomes, Jackson, Jimmy Garoppolo and Dak Prescott. Wilson has played 28 games - the most of that group - but has attempted fewer throws (847) than both Prescott (1,000) and Mahomes (982). 

PASSING YARDAGE - 7,036 (7th)

Before the Seahawks caved in to the 'Let Russ Cook' movement in 2020, a rush-orientated offense meant he was simply not afforded as many opportunities to shine as his peers. Wilson is 10th in attempts - 198 behind leader Tom Brady (1,045), though they have played the same amount of games. It is therefore impressive that he ranks seventh in yardage, even if he is well behind leader Prescott (8,065 yards).

YARDS-PER-ATTEMPT - 8.31 (1st)

What Wilson does with those throws is a far better reflection of his talent. There is no better deep-ball thrower in the NFL than Wilson - though Mahomes' Sunday touchdown bomb to Tyreek Hill might give his case some credence - and it is no surprise to see Wilson top the yards-per-attempt list.

PASSING PLAYS OF 25-PLUS YARDS - 66 (3rd)

That big arm naturally leads to big plays - and Wilson has had 66 completions of at least 25 yards in this time frame. Only Mahomes (71) and former Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback Jameis Winston (68) - the very epitome of boom or bust - have more such plays.

TOUCHDOWNS - 57 (2nd) and TOUCHDOWN PERCENTAGE - 6.7% (3rd)

Mahomes (63) and Wilson are way ahead of the rest in touchdown passes thrown but the Seahawks QB shades the 2018 MVP when it comes to how many of their attempts end with TDs (6.7 per cent to 6.4 per cent). Wilson trails the uber-efficient Tannehill (7.5 per cent) and Jackson (6.9 per cent) in that category.

INTERCEPTION PERCENTAGE - 0.9% (2nd)

Not turning the ball over is another important part of being a QB and Wilson is as safe as they come on that front. Only Green Bay Packers star Aaron Rodgers - arguably the best ever when it comes to taking care of the football - has a better interception percentage (0.7 per cent), with Wilson tossing just eight picks on 847 attempts.

COMPLETION PERCENTAGE - 66.9% (10th)

A quick look at those above Wilson here - Derek Carr, Nick Foles, Teddy Bridgewater - shows this stat is not as important when it comes to determining who is the NFL's best. What is more illuminating is that, again, he has a better figure than Mahomes (64.9 per cent) and Jackson (63.2 per cent).

Consider too that only Deshaun Watson of the Houston Texans has had more sacks (98) than Wilson (82), and you realise that the Seattle superstar has been doing all this without a stout offensive line.

Belichick isn't often wrong, and he was probably right when he said of Wilson "I don't really see anyone better than this player".

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