Bears unable to claw back against Packers

Monday, November 12, 2001

CHICAGO -- No amazing comeback win for the Chicago Bears this time. Brett Favre and the Green Bay Packers' defense wouldn't allow it.

The elusive Favre -- who was 19-of-32 for 268 yards -- threw touchdown passes to Bill Schroeder and Antonio Freeman, and Green Bay kept Chicago out of the end zone Sunday to beat the Bears 20-12.

The Packers (6-2) ended Chicago's six-game winning streak and moved into a first-place tie with the Bears (6-2) in the NFC Central. All Chicago had to show offensively was four field goals by Paul Edinger, even though the Bears moved inside the Packers 25 four times.

Green Bay's Ahman Green gained 93 yards on 18 carries, while the Packers held Chicago rookie Anthony Thomas to 45 yards on 22 carries.


EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. -- Curtis Martin, the NFL's top rusher, ran for 113 yards and three touchdowns to lead New York over Kansas City.

Martin also moved into 16th place on the career rushing list with 8,671 yards, passing Hall of Famer Jim Taylor. The Jets (6-3) also had three interceptions and a fumble recovery in winning their third straight. They showed all the elements a team needs on a blustery, chilly day in manhandling the Chiefs (2-7).

For Chiefs coach Dick Vermeil, it was a disappointing reunion with Jets coach Herman Edwards -- one of his proteges. It was Vermeil who signed undrafted cornerback Herman Edwards in 1977 for the Philadelphia Eagles.


ATLANTA -- Darrien Gordon had punt returns of 74 and 41 yards in the fourth quarter, setting up a touchdown and a field goal that carried Atlanta to a sloppy victory over Dallas.

The Falcons (4-4) won without quarterback Chris Chandler, who sat out with a rib injury. No. 1 draft pick Vick made his first pro start, but coach Dan Reeves borrowed from Steve Spurrier's playbook in the second half.

Vick and third-stringer Doug Johnson rotated on virtually every play. With the Falcons trailing 13-10, Johnson passed for the go-ahead touchdown, a 1-yarder to Brian Kozlowski with 5:20 remaining. Gordon set up the TD with his 74-yard return.


FOXBORO, Mass. -- Antowain Smith ran for 100 yards and two touchdowns to lead New England over Buffalo, as Bills quarterback Rob Johnson struggled before being knocked out of the game on his fifth sack.

With the crowd chanting for Doug Flutie, who went to San Diego after three uneasy years of sharing starting job with Johnson, Alex Van Pelt entered for the Bills (1-7) and threw a 17-yard touchdown pass to Peerless Price with 2:43 left. Van Pelt -- who completed just two of seven passes -- then hit Eric Moulds for a 2-point conversion, making the score 14-11.

On the onside kick, two Bills touched the ball before New England's Mike Vrabel recovered.


CLEVELAND -- Kris Brown, who missed four field goals last week and was wide once Sunday, kicked his fifth field goal with 9:38 left in overtime to lift Pittsburgh over Cleveland.

Brown's game-winning, 32-yard kick was set up Jerome Bettis, who ran for 163 yards -- 58 on Pittsburgh's winning drive in OT -- as the Steelers (6-2) stayed alone atop the AFC Central.

Pittsburgh's Kordell Stewart was 18-of-32 for 188 yards.

With the score tied 12-12, Brown missed 45-yard attempt with 1:37 left in regulation. But the Steelers got the ball to open OT, and, behind Bettis, they drove to the Browns 14. Brown made kicks from 31, 27, 37, 37 and 32 yards.


INDIANAPOLIS -- Jay Fiedler threw two touchdown passes to Chris Chambers, and Travis Minor ran for one as the Dolphins won their fourth straight in Indianapolis.

The Colts finished with Peyton Manning and leading tackler Mike Peterson both injured. Manning, who was bloodied by a helmet-to-helmet shot late in the game, had a swollen jaw after the game and said he would have X-rays to see if it was broken. Peterson tore a PCL in his knee.


PONTIAC, Mich. -- Martin Gramatica's 35-yard field goal with 4 seconds left gave Tampa Bay a victory and kept Detroit the lone winless team in the NFL.

The Buccaneers are 4-4 for the fourth straight year, while the 0-8 Lions are off to their worst start since going 0-11 in 1942.

Detroit began the fourth quarter with a 17-7 deficit, but tied it with 1:49 left. But the Buccaneers drove 63 yards in 1:45 to set up Gramatica's kick.


JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- Mark Brunell threw for two touchdowns, and Stacey Mack ran for two more to help Jacksonville snap a five-game losing streak.

The Jaguars (3-5) scored 21 points in the third quarter to take a 28-13 lead over Cincinnati (4-4) and, unlike the last two weeks, they figured out how to hold onto a double-digit lead.

Brunell played on a gimpy leg, but still threw for 189 yards. Mack had 71 yards on 15 carries, and Jimmy Smith had eight catches for 63 yards and a touchdown.

Jon Kitna threw for 303 yards, although 91 of them came on a late, desperation drive that ended when Aaron Beasley intercepted a pass in the end zone.

Corey Dillon ran for just 58 yards on 17 carries -- and the Bengals fell to 1-4 this season when he fails to crack 100 yards.


DENVER -- Brian Griese threw two touchdown passes just 39 seconds apart late in the first half to lead Denver over San Diego.

Denver (5-4), moving into a second-place tie with San Diego (5-4) in the AFC West, capitalized on a sprained left knee sustained by San Diego's leading tackler, safety Rodney Harrison, and injuries to linebacker Orlando Ruff (stinger) and cornerback Alex Molden (left ankle).

The Broncos built a 26-3 lead midway through the third quarter. San Diego rallied with a long touchdown pass and a fumble recovery for a touchdown, but Doug Flutie subsequently threw three interceptions.

Jason Elam kicked four field goals for the Broncos, who took a 20-0 halftime lead on Griese's two TD throws -- in the final 1:07 of the first half.


TEMPE, Ariz. -- Michael Strahan punched the ball out of Jake Plummer's hands during a sack to stop an Arizona scoring threat, setting off a wild play that led to a New York touchdown.

Tiki Barber rushed for 118 yards on 17 carries, and Ron Dayne added 49 yards in 19 attempts, including a 3-yard touchdown run on the first possession for New York (5-4).

49ERS 28, SAINTS 27

SAN FRANCISCO -- Garrison Hearst rushed for 145 yards against one of the NFL's best run defenses, and Jeff Garcia threw four touchdown passes as San Francisco beat New Orleans for its fifth victory in six games.

Garcia, who was 21-of-34 for 252 yards, hit Terrell Owens with eight passes for 100 yards and two touchdowns for the 49ers (6-2). Garcia also found Eric Johnson for the go-ahead TD with 11:06 left.

Joe Horn caught two TD passes from Aaron Brooks, and John Carney kicked four field goals.


PHILADELPHIA -- Duce Staley had 146 yards rushing and one TD in his first start since injuring his right shoulder in Week 2, and Donovan McNabb threw three touchdown passes, and ran for another one to lead Philadelphia over Minnesota.

Philadelphia (5-3) scored on six straight possessions, including its last five in the first half. The Vikings (3-5) have lost two straight by a lopsided margin. Tampa Bay beat Minnesota 41-14 on Oct. 28.


SEATTLE -- Shaun Alexander ran himself into the Seattle Seahawks' record book, and almost into the NFL record book.

Alexander set franchise marks with 266 yards rushing and an 88-yard touchdown run as the Seahawks beat the AFC West-leading Raiders.

The second-year running back from Alabama, starting his fifth straight game in place of the injured Ricky Watters, also had TD runs of 6 and 10 yards for the Seahawks (4-4).

Alexander's 266 yards on 35 carries broke the team single-game record of 207 yards set by Curt Warner at Kansas City in overtime Nov. 27, 1983.

-- From wire reports

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