It was a day to forget for Baker Mayfield and the Cleveland Browns who once again failed at the Pittsburgh Steelers, while the Tennessee Titans remained unbeaten in the NFL after late drama on Sunday.

Both the Atlanta Falcons and the New York Giants finally remembered what it feels like to be on the winning team, but the New England Patriots lost to the Denver Broncos to slip to 2-3 and be under ,500 in October for the first time since 2002.

There was drama as the Tennessee Titans downed the Houston Texans and the Indianapolis Colts moved to 4-2 thanks to a 31-27 triumph over the Cincinnati Bengals.


HURT MAYFIELD STRUGGLES AS STEELERS CONTINUE BROWNS DOMINANCE

The Steelers made it 17 straight wins over the Browns in Pittsburgh with a comprehensive 38-7 mauling of their AFC North rivals, during which the influence of Cleveland quarterback Mayfield was quelled.

Cleveland headed into the fixture on the back of a first four-game winning streak since 2009, but Mayfield – contending with a rib injury that limited his practice time – and the Browns offense never got going.

Mayfield was just two-of-seven passing for five yards with a sack and two picks on third downs, and was sat down for Case Keenum deep into the third quarter. In total he was sacked four times and intercepted twice in a bruising outing.

James Conner was impressive for Pittsburgh, finishing with 101 yards on 20 carries and scoring the Steelers' first offensive touchdown in the second quarter, which made the score 17-0.

Ben Roethlisberger completed 14 of 22 passes for 162 yards and throwing for a touchdown, while Chase Claypool and Benny Snell also scored rushing touchdowns on a great outing for the now 5-0 Steelers.

The Baltimore Ravens are second behind Pittsburgh in their division after defeating the Philadelphia Eagles 30-28, and they have now scored 20-plus points in 29 straight games – the second-longest streak in NFL history.


FALCONS, GIANTS UP AND RUNNING

The Atlanta Falcons fired head coach Dan Quinn and general manager Thomas Dimitroff after a 23-16 loss to the Carolina Panthers saw them slip to 0-5 for the season last week.

But under the leadership of interim coach Raheem Morris, the Falcons routed the Minnesota Vikings 40-23 at U.S. Bank Stadium for their first win of the season.

Julio Jones came back into the line-up and collected eight receptions for the return of 137 yards, while also celebrating his first two touchdowns of the season. Veteran quarterback Matt Ryan, whose future in the team was called into question after a poor start, made 30 of 40 passes for 371 yards.

Joe Judge's first win as New York Giants coach came in vastly different circumstances, scraping past the Washington Football Team 20-19.

Washington missed when they opted to go for a two-point conversion with 36 seconds remaining, rather than take the kick for an extra point that would have taken a game riddled with errors into overtime.

It meant only the New York Jets - in action later in the day - had yet to win in the NFL this season.


HENRY, TITANS RALLY PAST TEXANS

The Titans stayed perfect at 5-0 following a dramatic finish to their 42-36 triumph over the Houston Texans.

It did not look like being the Titans' day given they had two turnovers, saw Stephen Gostkowski have a field goal blocked and fail with another, while Houston QB Deshaun Watson threw for four touchdown passes and the Titans defense gave up 335 yards in passing.

The last of those touchdown passes from Watson had Houston up by seven points with one minute and 50 seconds remaining but they crucially failed with a two-point conversion.

Ryan Tannehill consequently drove the Titans 76 yards and found A.J. Brown with a six-yard touchdown pass with only four seconds left to force overtime.

The brilliant Derrick Henry, who finished with 212 yards rushing and 52 yards receiving, then took a direct snap for a five-yard touchdown to win it three minutes and 30 seconds into overtime.

The Chicago Bears improved to 5-1 after defeating the Carolina Panthers 23-16.


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

Pittsburgh Steelers went 4-0 for the season as rookie wide receiver Chase Claypool ran in four touchdowns to inspire a thrilling 38-29 win over the Philadelphia Eagles.

The other unbeaten record on the line on Sunday tumbled, though, with the Las Vegas Raiders stunning the Kansas City Chiefs with a 40-32 victory.

Elsewhere, interim head coach Romeo Crennel got off to a winning start with the Houston Texans, while there was an emotional return for Alex Smith as Washington continued to struggle.

 

CHASE RUNS AWAY WITH IT

Pittsburgh's unblemished start – the first time they have gone 4-0 since 1979 – owes much to the burgeoning relationship between veteran quarterback Ben Roethlisberger and breakout star Claypool.

A stunning outing began when he ran into the end zone for a two-yard score after a seven-minute drive in the first quarter before Roethlisberger found Claypool for a third-down completion and a 14-7 advantage.

Claypool also scored on the Steelers' first drive of the third quarter and Roethlisberger targeted the Canadian youngster 11 times. He did so tellingly with Pittsburgh holding a slender two-point lead in the closing minutes, allowing Claypool to conclude a stellar performance that featured seven receptions, 110 receiving yards and six rushing yards.

Kansas City found themselves on the wrong end of a typically high-scoring affair against the Raiders, who had five plays of at least 40 yards and made 490 yards overall in offense.

The game was in the balance at 24-24 at half-time but Patrick Mahomes threw his first interception of 2020 in the final quarter – Josh Jacobs ultimately the beneficiary with his second touchdown.

Derek Carr threw three TDs as Las Vegas improved to 3-2.

CRENNEL GETS HOUSTON ON THE BOARD

A 0-4 start saw Houston fire Bill O'Brien and install Crennel as the oldest head coach in NFL history.

He was 73 years and 115 days old on Sunday, but perhaps felt half his age as the Texans compiled a 30-14 win over the Jacksonville Jaguars, who are now similarly 1-4.

Deshaun Watson threw two interceptions but had a solid outing overall, finding eight different catchers and completing 25 of 35 passes for 359 yards and three touchdowns.

ALLEN RETURNS BUT WASHINGTON WOES CONTINUE

Already without Dwayne Haskins, Washington's problems at quarterback were compounded when Kyle Allen took a helmet-to-helmet hit from Los Angeles Rams' Jalen Ramsey.

It meant a return for Alex Smith, making a first NFL appearance for 693 days after recovering from a career-threatening compound leg facture in 2018.

The 36-year-old was understandably rusty, getting sacked by six times as the Rams ran out 30-10 winners.

Washington have now lost four consecutive games by 14 or more points – the first such slump by a franchise since 2001.

Joe Flacco coming in for injured signal caller Sam Darnold did nothing to lift the New York Jets from their malaise as a 30-10 defeat to the Arizona Cardinals at MetLife Stadium saw them drop to 0-5.

The Cardinals' Kyler Murray passed for a career-high 380 yards and one touchdown, while also rushing for a TD of his own.

Murray completed 27 of his 37 passes, including one of 37 yards for a DeAndre Hopkins touchdown. Hopkins racked up a game-high 131 yards and five other Cardinals players broke 30 receiving yards.

Flacco was 18 of 33 for 195 yards and a touchdown, while he was sacked twice.

Week 5 scores:

Los Angeles Rams 30-10 Washington
Pittsburgh Steelers 38-29 Philadelphia Eagles
Arizona Cardinals 30-10 New York Jets
Las Vegas Raiders 40-32 Kansas City Chiefs
Carolina Panthers 23-16 Atlanta Falcons
Houston Texans 30-14 Jacksonville Jaguars
Baltimore Ravens​ 27-3 Cincinnati Bengals

The 2020 NFL season is only a month old and the Houston Texans are already looking to the future following the firing of Bill O'Brien. 

O'Brien was this week relieved of his duties as head coach and general manager of the Texans after an 0-4 start, which followed on from a series of questionable personnel moves.  

Only one team, the 1992 San Diego Chargers, has started 0-4 and gone on to make the playoffs, meaning the Texans are likely playing for pride under interim head coach Romeo Crennel. 

Jack Easterby has taken on the GM role in an interim capacity, but what will O'Brien's long-term replacement in the front office have on his docket? 

Here we look at the tasks that await the new GM in the 2021 offseason.


Replace DeAndre Hopkins

O'Brien's decision to trade Hopkins for a second-round pick this year, a 2021 fourth and running back David Johnson was a move that played a significant role in sealing his fate. 

While quarterback Deshaun Watson's play has not really dropped off without Hopkins - his 8.5 yards per attempt average through four games is the highest of his career - the Texans' offense is predictably worse off without the All-Pro wide receiver. 

The Texans were 52-42 in games with Hopkins and are now 0-6 without him. They averaged 22.1 points in the 94 games Hopkins played for the franchise, but have put up just 17.8 points per game minus his services.

Hopkins helped the Texans rack up 343.8 total yards per game during his time in Houston, with their production in that regard dropping to 304.3 yards per game when he has not featured. 

As one of the game's top young quarterbacks, Watson can mask plenty of the Texans' failings, but the impact of losing a receiver of Hopkins' calibre was always going to be significant. They must repair the damage from a needless trade next offseason.

Shore up the protection

Another of O'Brien's headline moves was the 2019 deal for left tackle Laremy Tunsil, which saw Houston send two first-round picks, a second-rounder and a pair of players to the Miami Dolphins. 

Tunsil, widely regarded as one of the league's top players at the position, was signed to a three-year, $66million extension in April. Yet the numbers suggest the Texans' offensive line has actually declined since his arrival. 

Indeed, between 2014-2018 the Texans rushed for 120.2 yards a game (fifth in the NFL) and gave up an average of 2.63 sacks (24th in the NFL). 

Since 2019, however, the Texans' rush yardage average has dipped to 115.2 (15th), while they are conceding 3.25 sacks per game (31st). 

Tunsil is also the most penalised player in the league since 2019, having been flagged 16 times. Yet it is unlikely the Texans will give up on a player in whom they have invested so much, both financially and in terms of draft capital. 

The challenge for whoever is running the Texans in the offseason is to identify the key weaknesses in the trenches and ensure Watson has the protection to realise his MVP potential.

Reverse the defensive decline

The 2019 offseason also saw the trade of Jadeveon Clowney to the Seattle Seahawks.

A first overall pick in 2014, Clowney has never quite lived up to the billing as a pass rusher, but the drop-off by the Texans' defense following his exit has been stark.

Between 2014 and 2018, the Texans ranked in the top 10 in the NFL in opponent points per game (21.3), opponent total yards per game (329.9), opponent rush yards per game (99.3) and opponent passing yards per game (230.6). 

In the 20 regular-season games they have played since the start of the 2019 campaign, the Texans have allowed opponents to average 25.6 points, 389.3 total yards, 133.2 rushing yards and 256.1 passing yards. They rank in the bottom half of the league in all four categories. 

Whether Clowney would have prevented that decline is open for debate but, with J.J. Watt struggling to stay healthy in recent years, this is a defense that lacks difference-makers - something that must be addressed in 2021.

Acquire draft capital

The list of tasks for the next general manager of the Texans is lengthy, but O'Brien's replacement in that role will not be able to succeed in repairing the roster without acquiring draft capital. 

Perhaps the most damaging result of O'Brien's tenure as personnel chief is the lack of draft picks he has left them. 

The Texans do not have a pick in either of the first two rounds of the 2021 draft as a result of their trade with the Dolphins, which looks particularly costly given their first-round pick would be fourth overall if the season ended now. 

Houston needs to supplement an ageing and - outside of Watson - mediocre roster with premium young talent. The best way to do that is to acquire picks.

After the mess O'Brien has left them, it will take some creative roster reconstruction from his successor to put the Texans in contention for a first NFL title. 

An unstoppable force meets the immovable object in Week 5 of the NFL season as the Cleveland Browns host the Indianapolis Colts. 

Cleveland's offense has averaged over 200 rushing yards a game through the campaign's first quarter, while the Colts defense has been among the best run-stuffers in the league so far. 

Two of the NFL's finest young receivers will look to grab the acclaim when the 4-0 Seattle Seahawks face the Minnesota Vikings, while the Washington Football Team and Houston Texans will hope a big change can reverse their fortunes. 

Here, we look at the NFL's latest slate using Stats Perform Data.

 

FEATURE GAME

Indianapolis Colts at Cleveland Browns - Sunday 4.25pm (All times Eastern)

- Colts QB Philip Rivers enters the matchup with 4,996 career completions and he will almost certainly become the fifth player to complete 5,000 passes on Sunday. In the last 60 seasons, only three other quarterbacks have completed a higher percentage of their attempts through four games with a new team than Rivers' 72.7 per cent – that list includes Matt Schaub (74.0 per cent, 2007 Houston Texans), Teddy Bridgewater (73.0 per cent, 2020 Carolina Panthers), and Mark Herrmann (73.0 per cent, 1985 San Diego Chargers). 

- The Colts allowed just 28 rushing yards in their Week 4 win over the Chicago Bears, their fewest since Week 3 of 2009 (24 rushing yards versus the Arizona Cardinals). They have allowed just 945 total yards this season, their fewest through four games since holding opponents to 575 yards through the first four games of 1971.

- The Browns trio of Kareem Hunt (five TDs), Odell Beckham Jr. (four TDs), and Nick Chubb (four TDs) are the fifth trio of team-mates to each score four touchdowns in the first four games of the season. They are the first to do so since the 2013 Denver Broncos group of Wes Welker, Demaryius Thomas, and Julius Thomas.

OTHER KEY GAMES

Buffalo Bills at Tennessee Titans - Tuesday, 7pm 

- Buffalo have recorded 21 plays of at least 20 yards this season, second-most in the NFL behind only the Dallas Cowboys (23). Tennessee have an NFL-low nine plays of 20-plus yards this season, though neither the Titans nor the Bills have a single 20-yard running play this season. 

Minnesota Vikings at Seattle Seahawks - Sunday, 9.20pm 

- Ascending Seahawks star D.K. Metcalf leads the NFL in yards per catch (25.2 - minimum 10 receptions) and catches for 25-plus yards this season (seven). Justin Jefferson, a rookie with the Minnesota Vikings, ranks second in both these categories (21.8 average, 6 catches of 25-plus yards). 

Las Vegas Raiders at Kansas City Chiefs - Sunday, 1pm

- Chiefs tight end Travis Kelce (1,526) and Raiders tight end Darren Waller (1,392) rank first and second in receiving yards for players at their position since 2019. Kelce's 845 career receiving yards against the Raiders are the most among active players at any position.

Philadelphia Eagles at Pittsburgh Steelers - Sunday, 1pm

- The Steelers are looking for their first 4-0 start since 1979. Their current streak of 40 consecutive seasons without a 4-0 start is tied for the second-longest streak in NFL history behind a 48-year streak by the Houston Oilers/Tennessee Titans from 1960-2007.

Los Angeles Chargers at New Orleans Saints - Monday, 9.15pm

- Ahead of meeting the Justin Herbert-led Chargers, New Orleans QB Drew Brees has a 20-10 record when facing off against first-year quarterbacks, including wins in each of the last five such games. In those wins, Brees has a 75.8 completion percentage and has a 12-1 TD-INT ratio.

ELSEWHERE...

Jacksonville Jaguars at Houston Texans - Sunday, 1pm

- The Texans fired Bill O'Brien this week. He was the seventh coach in NFL history to be replaced following back-to-back 10-win seasons with a team, though the first to be replaced after four or fewer games. O’Brien's replacement, Romeo Crennel, will be the oldest head coach in NFL history (73 years and 115 days on Sunday).

Los Angeles Rams at Washington Football Team - Sunday, 1pm

- Washington, who will have Kyle Allen starting at QB after benching Dwayne Haskins, have now lost three straight games by at least 14 points after a 31-17 defeat to the Baltimore Ravens. The last time the franchise lost four straight games by at least 14 points was in 2001.

The NFL season is entering its second quarter but, even if you started your fantasy campaign 0-4, there is still reason for hope of a turnaround. 

It is early enough in the year to mount a revival, albeit for those owners looking to recover from a poor start, nailing roster construction is paramount. 

There will also be additional challenges from this week onwards with regular bye weeks, meaning a strong set of options on the bench will be crucial. 

Ahead of Week 5, we pick out at five players who have the potential to score big and should be firmly in your consideration as starters. 

QB: Teddy Bridgewater - Carolina Panthers

Save for the postponement of the Tennessee Titans' game with the Pittsburgh Steelers last week, it is the first round of games where teams will be on bye. 

That means many fantasy owners will be on the lookout for quarterback fill-ins - and Bridgewater stands out as a leading candidate. 

Bridgewater threw for 276 yards, two touchdowns and an interception in the Week 4 win over the Arizona Cardinals, which also saw him run for another score, his efforts good enough for 27.2 fantasy points. 

This week, Bridgewater faces an Atlanta Falcons defense surrendering 341.5 passing yards a game. The odds are in favour of Bridgewater logging his third successive start against an NFC South opponent with over 300 passing yards.

RB: Jerick McKinnon - San Francisco 49ers

With Raheem Mostert and Tevin Coleman sidelined, McKinnon has taken on the lead role in the San Francisco backfield. 

His production has not been efficient as the Niners have found it tough sledding on the ground in recent weeks. However, he has a touchdown in all four games this season and is a featured part of the passing game. 

McKinnon is averaging 16.6 fantasy points a game in points per reception leagues and should continue his strong start to the season against a Miami Dolphins defense that has already conceded seven rushing touchdowns. 

WR: Will Fuller - Houston Texans

Will the Texans finally get a win following the dismissal of Bill O'Brien as head coach and general manager? If they do, Fuller should play a considerable role. 

The speedy but oft-injured receiver had six catches for 108 yards and a touchdown in last week's defeat to the Minnesota Vikings and has five catches in two of his last three meetings with this week's opponents, the Jacksonville Jaguars. 

Jacksonville is surrendering 6.2 yards per play, making the Jaguars' defense ripe for the picking. 

TE: Eric Ebron - Pittsburgh Steelers

The Steelers will have watched 49ers star tight end George Kittle pick on the Philadelphia Eagles' linebackers and safeties last Sunday to the tune of 15 catches for 183 yards and a touchdown. 

Ebron is not the same dynamic threat as Kittle to opposing teams, but he had five catches for 52 yards and a score in the Week 3 meeting with the Texans and will have the benefit of a week's rest. 

His 17 receiving touchdowns are tied for the most among tight ends since 2018 and Ebron, who has 12 targets in his last two games, is primed to play a key role on offense as the Steelers aim to move to 4-0.

D/ST: Los Angeles Rams

The most challenging aspect of the Rams' matchup with the Washington Football Team may be the cross-country travel.

This is a perfect set up for a Rams defense that already has 12 sacks and six takeaways this season.

Washington's tally of eight turnovers is tied for the second-most in the NFL and, after benching Dwayne Haskins, they are turning to a quarterback in Kyle Allen who had 16 interceptions in 12 starts for the Panthers last year.

That is a recipe for a huge day for Aaron Donald and Co.

The Houston Texans have fired Bill O'Brien as their head coach and general manager after an 0-4 start to the 2020 season, according to widespread reports.

O'Brien has served as head coach of the Texans since 2014 and led them to four AFC South titles.

However, his moves since taking over as GM in January this year have led to intense scrutiny on O'Brien, with the decision to trade All-Pro wide receiver DeAndre Hopkins widely criticised.

Hopkins, who had five 1,000-yard seasons in seven years with the Texans, was dealt to the Arizona Cardinals for the scant return of a second-round pick, a 2021 fourth-rounder and running back David Johnson.

The Texans and star quarterback Deshaun Watson have struggled mightily without Hopkins, with Sunday's 31-23 loss to the Minnesota Vikings in O'Brien's final game dropping them to an 0-4 hole.

Romeo Crennel is expected to take over as interim coach, with the Texans facing the Jacksonville Jaguars on Sunday as they search for their first win.

The Philadelphia Eagles completed a dramatic comeback to upstage the San Francisco 49ers for their first win of the season on Sunday.

Philadelphia used a big fourth quarter to stun last season's Super Bowl finalists the 49ers at Levi's Stadium in Week 4.

Things got physical between Jalen Ramsey and Golden Tate as the Los Angeles Rams beat the New York Giants 17-9.

There were also wins for the in-form Buffalo Bills and Indianapolis Colts.

 

EAGLES SHOCK NINERS

After two losses and a draw to open 2020, and with a growing injury list, Philadelphia faced an uphill battle away to the 49ers.

The Eagles (1-2-1) also trailed in the fourth quarter before back-to-back touchdowns lifted Philadelphia past San Francisco.

Carson Wentz threw a 42-yard TD pass to Travis Fulgham with less than six minutes remaining as the Eagles moved ahead 18-14.

With starting quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo sidelined, Nick Mullens then threw an interception that Alex Singleton returned for a TD as the 49ers (2-2) lost at home again.

Mullens, who committed three turnovers, was 18 for 26 for 200 yards and a touchdown before he was replaced by 49ers team-mate C.J. Beathard.

Eagles QB Wentz finished 18-of-28 for 193 yards, a touchdown and interception, while he rushed for 37 yards and a TD as the Eagles moved top of the NFC East.

NO LOVE LOST IN INGLEWOOD

There was not much drama between the Rams and Giants, that was until the game ended.

The Rams (3-1) claimed a hard-fought victory over the winless Giants (0-4) after Jared Goff and Cooper Kupp combined for a 55-yard TD with just under seven minutes left to play at SoFi Stadium.

After grinding out victory, things really heated up as Rams star Ramsey and Giants wide receiver Tate traded punches.

Ramsey, who has two young children with Tate's sister, and the latter were pulled apart by team-mates in chaotic scenes.

"We don't want to have happen at the end of the game what happened," Giants coach Joe Judge said afterwards. "That's not the way we want to be as a team."

 

BILLS STAY PERFECT

The Bills remain undefeated after seeing off the Las Vegas Raiders 30-23.

Josh Allen led the way, throwing two touchdowns and rushing for another as the Bills improved to 4-0 for the season.

QB Derek Carr was 32 for 44 for 311 yards and a pair of TDs after the Raiders (2-2) lost their second straight game and first at the new Allegiant Stadium.

Meanwhile, the Philip Rivers and the Colts (3-1) took down the Chicago Bears (3-1) 19-11.

Rivers was 16 of 29 for 190 yards and a touchdown as he moved within four completions of joining Drew Brees, Tom Brady, Brett Favre and Peyton Manning with 5,000.

 

Week 4 scores:

Seattle Seahawks 31-23 Miami Dolphins
Cincinnati Bengals 33-25 Jacksonville Jaguars
Minnesota Vikings 31-23 Houston Texans
Cleveland Browns 49-38 Dallas Cowboys
Baltimore Ravens 31-17 Washington Football Team
New Orleans Saints 35-29 Detroit Lions
Carolina Panthers 31-21 Arizona Cardinals
Tampa Bay Buccaneers 38-31 Los Angeles Chargers
Los Angeles Rams 17-9 New York Giants
Buffalo Bills 30-23 Las Vegas Raiders
Indianapolis Colts 19-11 Chicago Bears
Philadelphia Eagles 25-20 San Francisco 49ers

Cleveland Browns wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. dashed the Dallas Cowboys' comeback hopes in Week 4, while the Seattle Seahawks improved to 4-0. 

Rookie quarterback Joe Burrow claimed his first win as the Cincinnati Bengals overcame the Jacksonville Jaguars 33-25, while the Carolina Panthers caused an upset, beating the Arizona Cardinals 31-21. 

Both the New Orleans Saints and Baltimore Ravens rebounded from Week 3 reverses, but Los Angeles Chargers passer Justin Herbert came up short as he became the latest rookie QB to lose to a team led by Tom Brady. 

Elsewhere, in a battle between two previously winless teams, it was the Minnesota Vikings who triumphed, dropping the Houston Texans to 0-4.

 

BECKHAM OUTSHINES DAK WITH BIG DAY

Dallas knew all about Beckham's brilliance - it was against the Cowboys when he performed his astonishing one-handed touchdown grab as a rookie with the New York Giants - yet they failed to stop Cleveland's receiver grabbing two first-half touchdowns - one thrown by fellow wideout Jarvis Landry. 

The Browns were 41-14 up by the end of the third quarter but the Cowboys, who rallied from 29-10 down to beat the Atlanta Falcons in Week 2, came roaring back thanks to Dak Prescott, who had 502 passing yards and four touchdown throws. 

However, Beckham scored on a 50-yard end-around run to seal Cleveland's 49-38 win, with Dallas' nemesis going off for 154 yards from scrimmage and three scores.

SEAHAWKS SURVIVE MIAMI TEST

Seven teams began Week 4 with a perfect 3-0 record and Seattle became the first to go 4-0, securing a 31-23 win over the Miami Dolphins. 

Russell Wilson threw for 360 yards and two touchdowns - giving him 16 already for the season - while running back Chris Carson also found the end zone twice and the Seahawks defense picked off a couple of Ryan Fitzpatrick passes. 

Fellow preseason Super Bowl favourites New Orleans and Baltimore got back on track, the Saints triumphing 35-29 over the Lions while the Ravens defeated the Washington Football Team 31-17, during which Lamar Jackson becoming the quickest in NFL history to reach 5,000 career passing yards and 2,000 yards rushing.

BURROW GETS FIRST W, HERBERT COMES CLOSE TO UPSTAGING BRADY

First overall pick Burrow led the Bengals to their first victory of the 2020 campaign, though it was Joe Mixon's 181 yards from scrimmage and three touchdowns that really made the difference against the Jaguars. 

Herbert, another opening-round pick in the 2020 NFL Draft, looked on course for his maiden NFL win too, the Chargers racing into a 24-7 lead thanks in part to a Brady pick-six. 

However, Brady, whose teams had won their previous 10 straight games against rookie QBs, would end the high-scoring contest with five touchdown passes, Tampa Bay triumphing 38-31. 

Week 4 scores:

Seattle Seahawks 31-23 Miami Dolphins
Cincinnati Bengals 33-25 Jacksonville Jaguars
Minnesota Vikings 31-23 Houston Texans
Cleveland Browns 49-38 Dallas Cowboys
Baltimore Ravens 31-17 Washington Football Team
New Orleans Saints 35-29 Detroit Lions
Carolina Panthers 31-21 Arizona Cardinals
Tampa Bay Buccaneers 38-31 Los Angeles Chargers

The Atlanta Falcons set an unwanted NFL record on Sunday as they suffered another fourth-quarter collapse to lose to the Chicago Bears.

Under-fire Dan Quinn saw his men surrender a 16-point lead to lose 30-26 a week after a humiliating last-gasp loss to the Dallas Cowboys.

There were big wins for the San Francisco 49ers and Cleveland Browns, while the Tennessee Titans once more had Stephen Gostkowski to thank for a narrow victory over the Minnesota Vikings.

The New England Patriots, Buffalo Bills and Pittsburgh Steelers also won, with the Philadelphia Eagles and Cincinnati Bengals playing out the first tie of the season.

 

FALCONS FELLED BY FOLES

Falcons coach Quinn looks to be in trouble after another fourth-quarter collapse by Atlanta, this time leading to a four-point loss to the Bears.

Nick Foles threw three touchdown passes in the final quarter, the latter connecting with Anthony Miller with two minutes remaining, as Chicago recovered from 16 points down to move to 3-0 for the season.

The Falcons are the first team in NFL history to blow a lead of 15 points or more in the fourth quarter and lose in back-to-back matches.

Matt Ryan was intercepted by Tashaun Gipson late on as a miserable day for the Falcons was compounded by the losses of Russell Gage (concussion) and Grady Jarrett (hip).

RAMS FALL SHORT IN SPECTACULAR COMEBACK, PATRIOTS SIX IN A ROW AGAINST RAIDERS

The Los Angeles Rams almost completed the third-biggest comeback ever in the regular season, only to be denied by a Tyler Kroft touchdown with 15 seconds remaining.

The Bills had squandered a 25-point advantage but were bailed out by Kroft's second of the game following good work from Josh Allen.

Elsewhere in the East, the Patriots moved to 2-0 at home as three touchdowns from Rex Burkhead led them to a 36-20 defeat of the Las Vegas Raiders.

 

TITANS BUOYED BY GOSTKOWSKI SIX APPEAL

The Titans downed the winless Minnesota Vikings 31-30 thanks to the boot of Stephen Gostkowski.

A career-high six field goals, including a 55-yarder with less than two minutes on the clock, helped to banish memories of some wayward kicking in his first two Titans outings.

Dalvin Cook rushed for a career-high 181 yards and scored for the Vikings, but they are 0-3 for the first time in seven years.

The Steelers are still perfect, though – they moved to 3-0 for the first time since 2010 by defeating the Houston Texans 28-21, Ben Roethlisberger throwing for 237 yards and two touchdowns in a franchise-record 221st appearance.

Week 3 scores:

Atlanta Falcons 26-30 Chicago Bears
Buffalo Bills 35-32 Los Angeles Rams
Cleveland Browns 34-20 Washington Football Team
Minnesota Vikings 30-31 Tennessee Titans
New England Patriots 36-20 Las Vegas Raiders
New York Giants 9-36 San Francisco 49ers
Philadelphia Eagles 23-23 Cincinnati Bengals
Pittsburgh Steelers 28-21 Houston Texans

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.

The Kansas City Chiefs and Baltimore Ravens both improved to 2-0 in the NFL but in contrasting fashion on Sunday.

Reigning Super Bowl champions the Chiefs needed overtime to see off the Los Angeles Chargers 23-20 in Week 2.

Lamar Jackson and the Ravens powered past the Houston Texans 33-16 on the road.

Meanwhile, Kyler Murray dazzled for the high-flying Arizona Cardinals and Russell Wilson sparked the Seattle Seahawks.

 

MAHOMES' CHIEFS OUTLAST CHARGERS

Patrick Mahomes and the Chiefs stayed perfect thanks to Harrison Butker's 58-yard field goal with less than two minutes remaining in OT.

Butker drilled three field goals for the day as he tied a Chiefs record for distance, while becoming the second kicker in NFL history to make a pair of 58-yard kicks in the same game.

It completed a rally for the Chiefs, who overturned a 17-6 deficit in the third quarter to survive an impressive NFL debut by Chargers rookie Justin Herbert.

Herbert threw 311 yards to become the ninth player since the merger to top 300 in his first game. He was 22 of 33 for a touchdown and interception.

As for former MVP and last season's Super Bowl MVP Mahomes, the Chiefs quarterback finished 27 of 47 for 302 passing yards and two touchdowns and rushed for 54 yards.

 

RAVENS PRESERVE UNBEATEN RUN

The Ravens overcame a slow start to extend their regular-season winning streak to 14 games – the longest run since the Carolina Panthers reeled off 18 successive victories in 2014-15.

Reigning MVP Jackson threw for 204 yards and a touchdown, while he rushed for 54 yards in Houston, where the Ravens led 20-10 at half-time.

The Ravens rushed for 230 yards compared to the Texans' 51 as Mark Ingram II had 55 and a touchdown.

"We feel like we have the best backfield in the league. We just try to prove that, week in, week out," Ingram said.

MURRAY HAS CARDINALS SOARING

Murray continues to show why the Cardinals were so desperate to draft him with the number one pick last year after inspiring a 30-15 victory against the Washington Football Team.

Second-year quarterback Murray finished with 286 yards and a touchdown, while he ran for two TDs in a stunning display.

Murray – a dual-threat – put on a show as he ran with the ball and went for 14 and 21 yards to help the Cardinals improve to 2-0.

"As soon as I leave the pocket I survey the field," Murray said. "Seeing how the blocks were set up, they were set up pretty perfectly. Once I get a guy one on one, I like my chances."

Cardinals star DeAndre Hopkins had eight catches for 68 yards and a touchdown.

Meanwhile, Wilson fuelled the Seahawks to a 35-30 win over the New England Patriots.

Wilson was 21-of-28 for 288 yards and five touchdowns as the Seahawks made it two victories from two games.

It condemned Can Newton and the Patriots to their first loss of the season after Tom Brady's QB replacement in New England finished 30 of 44 for 397 yards, a touchdown, interception and a sack in Seattle.

 

Week 2 scores:

Chicago Bears 17-13 New York Giants 
Dallas Cowboys 40-39 Atlanta Falcons 
Green Bay Packers 42-21 Detroit Lions 
Tennessee Titans 33-30 Jacksonville Jaguars 
Indianapolis Colts 28-11 Minnesota Vikings 
Buffalo Bills 31-28 Miami Dolphins 
San Francisco 49ers 31-13 New York Jets 
Los Angeles Rams 37-19 Philadelphia Eagles 
Pittsburgh Steelers 26-21 Denver Broncos 
Tampa Bay Buccaneers 31-17 Carolina Panthers
Arizona Cardinals 30-15 Washington Football Team
Kansas City Chiefs 23-20 Los Angeles Chargers
Baltimore Ravens 33-16 Houston Texans
Seattle Seahawks 35-30 New England Patriots

The New England Patriots and Seattle Seahawks were among the most impressive teams in Week 1 - now they meet at CenturyLink Field on Sunday Night Football.

Cam Newton, Tom Brady's replacement at quarterback, led New England to a 21-11 victory over the Miami Dolphins, while Russell Wilson put on a passing clinic when completing 31 of his 35 attempts in Seattle's 38-25 win over the Atlanta Falcons.

A repeat of Super Bowl XLIX is the standout game of Sunday's slate, though there are plenty more mouth-watering encounters, including the Baltimore Ravens facing the Houston Texans.

Here we break down the big matchups using Stats Perform data.

 

FEATURE GAME

Patriots at Seahawks - Sunday, 8.20pm (all times Eastern)

- This will be the first game in NFL history in which both teams will have a head coach aged 68 or older. Seahawks coach Pete Carroll is 69, while Patriots coach Bill Belichick is 68.

- Newton led the Patriots with 75 yards rushing on a game-high 15 carries in his Pats debut last week. Should he finish as New England's leading rusher again in Seattle, Newton will be his team's leading rusher for a 37th time - a new record for the most such games by a quarterback in the Super Bowl era (since 1966).

- New England have won eight straight games against NFC opponents, including their Super Bowl LIII win over the Los Angeles Rams, dating back to a loss to the Detroit Lions in Week 3 of the 2018 season.

OTHER KEY GAMES

Rams at Eagles - Sunday, 1pm

- The Eagles have won the last six meetings between these teams, including one-score wins in Los Angeles in 2017 (43-35) and 2018 (30-23). They have averaged 32.2 points during the win streak, with at least 30 points in each of the last five meetings.

Broncos at Steelers - Sunday, 1pm

- The Broncos have won four of the last five games against the Steelers, including two playoff wins. Four of those five games were decided by seven points or fewer.

Chiefs at Chargers - Sunday, 4.25pm

- After starting last season 6-4, Kansas City have won 10 straight games - regular season and playoffs. The streak began last November with a win over the Chargers in Mexico City. Each of the last seven victories have come by a double-digit margin; since 2000, only the 2007 Patriots (eight games) have had a longer streak of wins by 10 or more points.

Ravens at Texans - Sunday, 4.25pm

- The Ravens have gone 12 straight regular-season games without trailing in the second half, the longest streak by any NFL team since the Chicago Bears had a 12-game streak from 1933-34. The last team to have a streak longer than 12 games was the Green Bay Packers from 1929-30 (18).

Saints at Raiders - Monday, 4.15pm

- Josh Jacobs had three rushing touchdowns in Week 1, becoming the first Raider to do so since Latavius Murray, who is now with New Orleans, had three in Week 9 of 2016. Only two Raiders have rushed for three touchdowns more than once – Marcus Allen (five times) and Pete Banaszak (twice).

ELSEWHERE...

Falcons at Cowboys - Sunday, 1pm

- Dak Prescott has not been intercepted in his last 223 pass attempts going back to last November, the longest streak in Cowboys history. Troy Aikman held the previous mark at 216 passes in 1999.

Lions at Packers - Sunday, 1pm

- Green Bay have won seven straight home openers since a 30-22 loss against the San Francisco 49ers in 2012. That is the second-longest active streak of its kind, behind the Seahawks (11 straight).

J.J. Watt could not "fully understand" the boos heard during a pre-game moment of unity in protest against racism and social injustice ahead of the NFL's season opener.

Players from Super Bowl champions the Kansas City Chiefs and the Houston Texans linked arms prior to Thursday's contest, which the Chiefs won 34-20 at Arrowhead Stadium.

The Chiefs are among the teams letting supporters into their arena during the coronavirus pandemic and, despite fewer than a quarter of the seats being filled, boos could be heard from pockets of the stands.

"The moment of unity I personally thought was good," Texans defensive end Watt told NFL Media. 

"I mean the booing during that moment was unfortunate. I don't fully understand that. There was no flag involved. There was nothing involved other than two teams coming together to show unity."

The NFL has opted to alter its stance on protests this season, with end zones to bear the words "End Racism" and "It Takes All of Us", while players can display the names of victims of social injustice on their safety helmets.

Houston players stayed in the locker room during the national anthem, while the Chiefs' Alex Okafor took a knee.

Chiefs tight end Travis Kelce said: "[We wanted to] let everyone know that we had their back.

"You can go ahead and whatever you feel is the right decision in your heart, you have your brother's back and you have your brother's support on this team. 

"And we made sure that everybody was comfortable in that area and they weren't gonna get backlash from anybody on this team for doing that.

"And I thought it was a great show of unity amongst both of us, the Chiefs and the Texans.''

Texans coach Bill O'Brien stated he did not hear any booing and pondered whether the jeers may have actually been for his team as the opposing side.

"I thought that that was a nice thing to do, so I'm not sure why they would boo that," O'Brien said. 

"Maybe they were just booing us because we had just come on the field as the visiting team. But yeah, I thought that that was a nice gesture."

Chiefs coach Andy Reid also said he did not hear the boos and added: "I thought that was kind of a neat deal, both sides coming together for a cause and the story was told there. 

"We can all learn from this, and really it's just to make us all better, even a stronger country than we already are. We have a chance to just be completely unstoppable when all hands join together and that's a beautiful thing."

Patrick Mahomes made history after throwing three touchdown passes as Super Bowl champions the Kansas City Chiefs defeated the Houston Texans 34-20 in the NFL opener.

Chiefs quarterback Mahomes became the first player in NFL history to throw three touchdown passes with no interceptions in a third consecutive season opener on Thursday.

Mahomes, who signed a record 10-year, $503million contract extension in the offseason, was 24 of 32 for 211 yards and one sack as the Chiefs opened their title defence in winning fashion.

Before the 2020 NFL season got underway, the Texans remained in the locker room for the national anthem, while the Chiefs all stood on the sideline in Kansas City.

There was also a first for professional sports in the United States, with fans in attendance amid the coronavirus pandemic – the Chiefs allowing a crowd of 22 per cent capacity to enter Arrowhead Stadium, where the Super Bowl banner was unveiled.

The Texans struck first on the road, David Johnson's touchdown giving Houston an early 7-0 lead before the Chiefs took control.

Mahomes led the way, throwing a touchdown to star team-mate Travis Kelce and another to Sammy Watkins as the Chiefs scored 17 unanswered points in the second quarter.

Clyde Edwards-Helaire – Kansas City's first-round pick – scored following a 27-yard run to put the Chiefs ahead 24-7 early in the third quarter.

Texans quarterback Deshaun Watson tried to inspire a comeback as Houston snapped a run of 31 consecutive points conceded following Mahomes' short pass to Tyreek Hill but there was no denying the Chiefs, who secured a 10th consecutive win – counting the playoffs and Super Bowl LIV.

Watson finished 20 of 32 for 253 yards, one touchdown, one interception and four sacks.

Saturday was roster cutdown day in the NFL, with teams required to trim their squads to 53 players ahead of the start of the 2020 season.

However, instead of being dominated by news of players losing their jobs, it was those who received significant paydays who made the headlines.

Deshaun Watson was the first of three players to receive lucrative extensions, while a high-profile free agent finally found a new home.

Here we recap a free-spending Saturday in the NFL.

 

Deshaun Watson: No problems for Houston as QB signs massive deal

The Texans star quarterback kicked off a busy day of NFL news when it was revealed he had signed a four-year, $160million extension with Houston.

Watson will have an average annual base salary of $39million over the next four years, the highest in the league in that timeframe.

It is a deal he undoubtedly deserves. Watson has propelled the Texans to the ranks of AFC contenders and had them 24-0 up in the Divisional Round of the playoffs against the Kansas City Chiefs before Patrick Mahomes propelled his team to the first of three comeback wins in their run to the Super Bowl title.

He is one of the top young quarterbacks in the NFL but will have a more difficult task on his hands this year, with head coach and de-facto GM Bill O'Brien having traded away his favourite target, DeAndre Hopkins, for a remarkably scant return this offseason.

For Watson to complete his ascension to the NFL elite with a Lombardi Trophy, the Texans and O'Brien may have to part ways.

KEY STAT: Since entering the league in 2017, Watson ranks fourth among all quarterbacks in yards per attempt. He has averaged 8.07 yards per pass.

Keenan Allen: Chargers reward route-running phenom with extension

Though he does not receive the same attention as the likes of Michael Thomas and Hopkins, Allen has firmly established himself as one of the league's premier wide receivers.

A route-running savant who has fought back from injury derailed seasons in 2015 and 2016, Allen received his just reward for three outstanding seasons since the Los Angeles Chargers left their former home of San Diego.

He agreed to terms on a four-year extension worth over $80m, keeping him with the Chargers through the 2024 season.

The Chargers picked quarterback Justin Herbert with the sixth overall pick this year and Allen maintaining his stellar form will be critical to their new franchise passer living up to his draft status.

KEY STAT: Allen has been named to the Pro Bowl in each of the past three seasons (2017-19). In that time, he has 3,788 receiving yards. Only Julio Jones, Thomas and Hopkins have more in the same period.

Tre'Davious White: Bills extend All-Pro cornerback at a bargain rate

Arguably the most important player on an excellent Buffalo Bills defense, cornerback White was named a first-team All-Pro in 2019.

He will be paid at a level that reflects his status after agreeing a four-year extension worth $69m with $55m in guarantees. 

Yet, with some anticipating the Bills would have to pay White around $20m a season, Buffalo appears to have got something of a steal.

If he continues to improve and help the Bills dethrone the New England Patriots in the AFC East, general manager Brandon Beane will see it as money well spent.

KEY STAT: White has 43 pass breakups and 12 interceptions since entering the league in 2017. He had a league-leading six interceptions in 2019.

Jadeveon Clowney: Star pass rusher takes his talents to Tennessee

The longest-running free agency saga of the 2020 offseason came to a conclusion as pass rusher Clowney decided to sign for the Tennessee Titans.

Inexplicably not re-signed by the Seattle Seahawks, Clowney was subject to a late push for his services from the New Orleans Saints.

A former team-mate of Watson in Houston, he will reportedly receive a one-year, $12m contract, bolstering a defense already blessed with significant talent on the front and in the secondary.

After coming agonisingly close to reaching the Super Bowl last season, Clowney could be the player that puts the Titans over the top, though among his first tasks will be helping them keep Watson at bay in the AFC South.

KEY STAT: Clowney is fifth in the NFL in stuffs - defensive stops at or before the line of scrimmage - since entering the league in 2014 with 48.

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