Eagles spoil DeSean Jackson’s return to Philly, Lynch wins it for Seahawks in OT, and All of NFL Week 3—the Monday Morning Realist


Every Monday morning, Section 215’s Akiem Bailum gives an in-depth and unfiltered look at all of the latest sports news in The Monday Morning Realist. You can follow Akiem on Twitter @AkiemBailum.

Ahh, Week 3, Realists. The final week of NFL action prior to teams taking these things called “bye weeks”. Six of them will be on holiday next week…but that’s next week. Let’s not try to look ahead to next week (yet). How about we see if the NFL can make it through one week without any players or owners having any encounters with the boys in blue.

Hint: none of them wear NFL uniforms, but they do sport a certain kind of shield…

Anyhow, on to Week 3!

Who Stunned JF?

Sep 21, 2014; St. Louis, MO, USA; Dallas Cowboys running back DeMarco Murray (29) runs the ball against the St. Louis Rams during the first half at the Edward Jones Dome. Mandatory Credit: Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports

Speaking of ‘boys that wear blue, remember when everyone seemed to write off the Dallas Cowboys after losing in Week One to the San Francisco 49ers? Tony Romo threw so many interceptions that game, you wonder if the Cowboys’ radio network that day was sponsored by a charity service in North Texas. They did, though, defeat Tennessee thanks to 167 yards from DeMarco Murray.

Also, St. Louis nowadays is St. Louis in the wrong division. The Rams’ one loss this year was courtesy of the Minnesota Vikings in Week One. Their one win was over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, and based on what happened to them on Thursday Night in Atlanta, they could travel to the ATL to play Georgia Tech and would probably lose.

It would also be the Rams’ final game before they go on their bye week—next week. In fact, three of the NFC West’s four teams have their bye in Week 4. And on the other side of that bye is another NFC East team that is not Washington or New York.

At their place.

Which was not the case for the Cowboys (in the blue unis!) and Rams this week. St. Louis would score first on its opening possession as a 15 play, 80 yard drive resulted in a TD pass from Austin Davis to Lance Kendrick. The following Greg Zuerlein extra point was good and the Rams led 7-0.

By the way, a Dallas team playing against a QB whose first name is Austin. Brilliant.

What else appeared to be so was St. Louis’ defense. A 3rd and 4 at the Rams’ 45 yard line led to a fumble caused by an Alec Ogletree tackle. It was recovered by Cody Davis, allowing the Rams to assume possession at their 35 yard line.

The Rams were able to convert that Dallas turnover into a recipe for points as Davis would connect with Brian Quick for a 51 yard TD on a 3rd and 13 from their own 49. Zuerlein’s PAT was good, leading to a 14-0 St. Louis advantage.

Two Cowboys possessions later, it looked more and more as if they did not belong on a football field with the Rams. Romo would be intercepted by Janoris Jenkins at the Dallas 25. Jenkins returned the rock 25 yards the other way for a Pick 6. 21-0 Cowboys.

Get the NFC West off America’s Team!

Romo and the Cowboys’ next possession would also result in points—for his own team. A pass intended for Cole Beasley actually ended up in a defensive pass interference flag on LaMarcus Joyner. It was a 3rd and 6 at the Rams’ 27, but that placed the ball at the one yard line. One play later, Murray gave the Cowboys their first points of the game. Dan Bailey’s PAT was good. 21-7 Rams.

St. Louis wanted those points back and had advanced their next possession into Cowboys’ territory. But, Scott Wells fumbled for the Rams on a 3rd and 1 from inside Dallas territory. Henry Melton recovered the football, giving it once again to Dallas. The Cowboys then attempted to engineer one more scoring drive with under a minute to play in the half, but instead of seven, had to settle for three courtesy of a Bailey 29 yard field goal after advancing the ball to the 11 yard line with five seconds remaining. 21-10 St. Louis.

It only took four plays after the half to make this game even more interesting. Dallas would get the ball back to start the second half. Four plays in, and 68 yards later after a Romo pass to Dez Bryant, the Rams saw their lead cut all the way to four at 21-17.

St. Louis was appearing to have none of it and planned a drive to extend their lead back out to 11. It looked as if that would be the case—or it would be seven again. But Jeff Fisher decided to attempt a 4th and 1 instead of simply kicking a field goal. The Cowboys defense stuffed the Rams, giving Dallas possession once again.

Dallas turned the St. Louis loss of downs into points with a 40-yarder off the foot of Bailey. The Rams’ lead that was once twenty one was only one. 21-20.

St. Louis would answer on their following possession when they also tacked on three more. Another Zuerlein field goal (from 28 yards, after advancing to the 10) made the game 24-20.

Who says Romo isn’t clutch? He was on his next drive when he went 11 plays and 84 yards in over seven minutes, resulting in a 12 yard strike to Terrance Williams for seven. 27-24 Cowboys.

A Bruce Carter pick of Davis, then extended the Cowboys lead out to 34-24.

Show Me Blown Leads.

Davis and the Rams were able to go 80 yards themselves in over three minutes. Davis found Austin Pettis for four yards to make the game 34-31. Dallas still had a chance to ice the game despite St. Louis having all three timeouts. The Cowboys could not maintain possession, giving the ball back to the Rams on their home turf.

But on a 1st and 10 from the Rams’ 26, Davis wanted a quick throw to Quick, but it quickly ended up in Morris Claiborne’s hands. That pick ended the game and gave Dallas a 2-1 record. St. Louis—1-2.

• Romo—18/23, 217 yards, 2 TDs, 1 INT
• Murray—24 carries, 100 yards, 1 TD
• Bryant—6 receptions, 89 yards, 1 TD

• Davis—30/42, 327 yards, 3 TDs, 2 INTs
• Stacy—12 carries, 67 yards
• Cook—7 receptions, 75 yards

Week 4—NO at DAL, STL bye


Sep 21, 2014; Philadelphia, PA, USA; Philadelphia Eagles wide receiver Jeremy Maclin (18) catches a 27-yard touchdown pass in the fourth quarter against the Washington Redskins at Lincoln Financial Field. The Eagles defeated the Redskins, 37-34. Mandatory Credit: Eric Hartline-USA TODAY Sports

“DeSean Jackson’s back in Philly!”

Based on the first couple of games of the season, the Philadelphia Eagles are already looking like one of the best teams in the NFL. And for all of the media lovin’ that ESPN showered on Tim Tebow (and is doing now with Johnny Manziel), Nick Foles appears to be better than either one of them and was nowhere near as ballyhooed.

“DeSean Jackson’s back in Philly!”

On top of that, last week on Monday Night Football, Philadelphia earned a huge victory over the Indianapolis Colts at Lucas Oil Stadium thanks to Darren Sproles running completely roughshod over their run defense. This was a run defense that had issues stopping a ground game since a certain #18 wore cleats for Indy’s football team.

“DeSean Jackson’s back in Philly!”

Every time Sproles carries the football, it has to make New Orleans Saints fans weep that their team basically gave him away for a hill of beans.

“DeSean Jackson’s back in Philly!”

Meanwhile, does it appear that the Washington Redskins are going anywhere this season but to their couches this January? Already again in QB controversy thanks to Robert Griffin III’s injury & Kirk Cousins’ performance vs. Jacksonville, already again in PR controversy thanks to their team’s name, the 2014 rendition of the Redskins already looks like it will resemble another certain Beltway institution—Congress.

“DeSean Jackson’s back in Philly!”

And, then of course, there’s that DeSean Jackson guy who was released by the Eagles because of supposed “gang” activity—whatever that means.

For Washington, this one would begin very auspiciously. Their first drive included plays of 23 and 18 yards, but would result in a 4 yard TD strike from Cousins to Darren Young. Kai Forbath’s point after the TD was good. 7-0 Redskins.

That would become 7-7 in no time…and the Eagles’ offense didn’t even have to take the field. Chris Polk was waiting to receive the ensuing kickoff. He had plans. Big plans. 102-yard return big plans. That and a Cody Parkey field goal tied the score.

The Redskins would regain the lead on their next possession the more conventional style. Another long drive from Cousins included a 37 yard throw to Niles Paul (and a 10 yard pass to Jackson). The TD was courtesy of a short pass to Pierre Garcon to make the score 14-7 Washington. Forbath was true once again on the PAT.

Philly looked to answer, and had a drive that went into Redskins territory. Except that Sproles made a mistake he didn’t do much of in Indianapolis. Sproles put the ball on the turf. Bashaud Breeland caused the fumble and DeAngelo Hall found the football and he wears burgundy and gold. Meaning a turnover.

A turnover that would be converted into points as being able to advance the rock to the 31 yard line resulted in a Forbath FG from 49 yards out. 17-7 Washington.

One play later, the Eagles answered when Foles connected with Jeremy Maclin for 80 yards and a touchdown. 17-14 Redskins? Right?

Not exactly since Philadelphia was flagged for an illegal block above the waist. No harm no foul done, though. Plays of 21 (with a completion challenge since the receiver was pushed out of bounds) and 19 yards would conclude in a Foles TD pass to Jordan Matthews for 11 yards. Now, we were at 17-14.

Washington extended its advantage back to six in just under five minutes. That possession ended in another FG (Forbath—44 yards). 20-14 Redskins.

And just over one minute later, the Eagles answered once again thanks to Foles operating a no-huddle offense. Just as was the case last possession, he found Matthews for another 11 yard TD to close out the first half and give Philadelphia a lead. 21-20 Philly.

Oh, and just to make things even more convenient for the Eagles—they would begin the second half with possession of the football. Result: a 38 yard field goal from Parkey. 24-20 Eagles.

The Redskins went three and out on their following possession, allowing Philadelphia to assume control on offense again. What had to begin to frustrate some Eagles fans was the fact that long possessions were resulting in field goals instead of touchdowns. This was the case again as they had to settle for another Parkey field goal (33 yards). 27-20 Eagles.

And when you settle for field goals, you keep opponents in games. Case in point with what would occur two Washington possessions later thanks to one play for 81 yards from Cousins to Jackson in front of his former fans. Tie game at 27.

This was the score going into the fourth quarter. A pair of Philadelphia possessions into the final frame, Foles was picked by Breeland at the 48 yard line on a pass intended for Brent Celek. There were two penalties on the play and they both offset. The pass was then ruled incomplete, allowing the Eagles to keep possession.

There’s a saying that you do not look a gift football in the mouth. Foles and his offense did not on this possession after that call on the field as he found Maclin for 27 yards. 34-27 Philadelphia.

The following Redskins possession only resulted in one play as well as Cousins attempted to throw to Niles Paul, but found Malcolm Jenkins (remember him, Seahawks fans?). Philadelphia would begin that possession in Redskins territory but could only advance the football a pair of yards. They had to settle for a 51 yard field goal from Parkey to make it 37-27 Eagles.

Washington was not finished. The long play of the ensuing Redskins possession went for 55 yards from Cousins to Roy Helu. That same Helu would be the beneficiary of a 1 yard touchdown run to bring Washington to within three at 37-34.

Except, the Redskins defense could not get a stop to put their offense back on the field to tie the game or win the game as Philadelphia won 37-34.

• Foles—27/41, 325 yards, 3 TDs
• McCoy—19 carries for 22 yards
• Maclin—8 receptions for 154 yards

• Cousins—30/48, 427 yards, 3 TDs, 1 INT
• Morris—23 carries, 77 yards
• Garcon—11 receptions, 138 yards, 1 TD

Week 4—NYG at WAS (Thursday), PHI at SF

More Travel, More Mileage?

Sep 21, 2014; Detroit, MI, USA; Detroit Lions wide receiver Calvin Johnson (81) makes a catch while being pushed out of bounds by Green Bay Packers cornerback Davon House (31) during the third quarter at Ford Field. Mandatory Credit: Andrew Weber-USA TODAY Sports

Disclaimer: If you are one of these that are into a lot of offense, then the Packers and Lions game that occurred from Detroit’s Ford Field is probably not the game for you.

Green Bay, at least on paper, is supposed to be one of the best teams in football this year now that Aaron Rodgers is healthy and the rest of the division appears to be average at best. At least that’s what we thought.

There was a reason why the NFL scheduled the Pack to play on the Thursday Night season opener in Seattle. We had the defending champions playing a team that was picked to possibly meet them again in the NFC Championship Game this season.

Oh, then there was that whole inter-touchdown thing that occurred in 2012 at the same CenturyLink Field. You know—the game that singlehandedly ended the NFL’s hard-line stance against the original referees.

Meanwhile, the Detroit Lions are a different case altogether. One week (Week One) it appears as if the New York Giants do not belong in the same zip code as the Lions, the next it seems as if they cannot get anything going on their home field against Carolina. I will say it once and say it again—what is going on with the Lions? It’s a shame because lesser receivers get more recognition for being on good teams than Calvin Johnson does sometimes for playing with the Lions.

At this point, there shouldn’t be much debate about Calvin Johnson’s Hall of Fame status—we are just waiting for his bust to be displayed in Canton, Ohio.

Given the longevity and the storied nature of the franchises in this particular division, NFC North rivalries are some of the fiercest in all of sports. The Lions and Packers’ fan bases have virtually no love lost for each other.

This game more closely resembled a Ravens-Steelers tilt as opposed to Detroit and Green Bay. The Lions’ initial possession of the game resulted in a punt. The second play of the Packers’ first drive ended in a Nick Fairley force of a fumble on Eddie Lacy. Don Carey then recovered the football and returned it 40 yards in the opposite directions for a Lions touchdown. An extra point from Nate Freese was good for a 7-0 lead.

Punts would be a plenty throughout the first quarter until a Stafford pass intended for Corey Fuller instead found a green and gold jersey—that of Ha-Ha Clinton Dix. There’s a “last laugh” reference I could use to describe the Packers ensuing possession—but it would be too easy.

Somewhat like the way Rodgers can make scoring TDs usually as he connected for a 10 yard strike to Andrew Quarless for seven. Mason Crosby’s field goal was good for a 7-7 tie game.

Stafford would be picked off again as Davon House intercepted him on a pass intended for Calvin Johnson when Stafford looked for a home run pass. It looked as if it would be a touchback, but House was ruled down at the Packers’ one-yard line.

That ruling would pay dividends for the Lions defense as they stopped Eddie Lacy on the first Packers play on that possession, resulting in a safety for Detroit and a 9-7 lead. Yeah, Packers/Lions instead of Brewers/Tigers.

This gave the Lions back the ball, with excellent field possession at their own 45. Detroit would eat over seven minutes off of the clock, but only muster another field goal from the foot of Freese. That made the score 12-7.

Detroit got the ball back one more time prior to the end of the half with intention of putting more points on the board. A 52 yard pass from Stafford to Fuller seemed to set the Lions up very well to tack on at least three more points before the half expired. Except that Freese’s 41 yard field goal was no good (wide left).

The first Detroit drive (every Lions possession should be called a drive, get it?) was promising, and seemed as if it certainly would result in seven (or at least three) points. Only thing was that on second and seven from the Packers’ 7-yard line, Stafford was sacked and Julius Peppers recovered a fumbled football.

Green Bay had to punt again, but the Lions would not make a similar mistake on the ensuing possession as they were dominating time of possession, but didn’t have much to show for it. That would change as a 26 yard run from Reggie Bush would extend the Detroit advantage to 19-7.

The following Packers’ drive also looked like it would result in points. But, Green Bay and Mike McCarthy wanted seven instead of simply settling for three at this point in the game. They went for the first down on 4th and 5 from the Lions’ 20-yard line only to have a pass intended for Jordy Nelson be incomplete.

Detroit, then with just under six minutes remaining, the Packers having all three of their timeouts, and the two minute warning were able to milk all of that time off the clock, leading to a Lions 19-7 win over Green Bay.

• Stafford—22/34, 246 yards, 2 INTs
• Bush—12 carries, 61 yards, 1 TD
• Johnson—6 receptions for 82 yards

• Rodgers—16/27, 162 yards, 1 TD
• Starks—8 carries, 38 yards
• Nelson—5 receptions, 58 yards

Week 4—GB at CHI, DET at NYJ

It was one of those nights in New York City…

Sep 21, 2014; Seattle, WA, USA; Seattle Seahawks running back Marshawn Lynch (24) and Seattle Seahawks fullback Derrick Coleman (40) celebrate after Lynch scored the game winning touchdown against the Denver Broncos in overtime at CenturyLink Field. Seattle defeated Denver 26-20. Mandatory Credit: Steven Bisig-USA TODAY Sports

Denver has won both of its games so far up to this point in the season. Peyton Manning and the Broncos defeated his former team, Indianapolis, 31-24 in front of a national audience Sunday night on NBC. That was then followed up with a 24-17 over Kansas City that was aided by the referees if you ask a few people in the state of Kansas.

Meanwhile in the Emerald City, the Seahawks title defense began with a 36-16 Marshawn Lynch-induced beatdown of the Packers, and a defeat on the road to San Diego 30-21 in which the Seahawks secondary allowed 3 TD passes from Philip Rivers to Antonio Gates. This prompted more concerns that this Seahawks team simply isn’t the same in front of the 12s that they are on the road.

But that’s irrelevant.

Remember what happened the last time these two clubs met in a little game known as…the Super Bowl? Realists, correct me if I’m wrong, but wasn’t that Super Bowl played in the New York/New Jersey metropolitan area? Also, weren’t there weather concerns amongst the media that turned out to be nothing but hot air from men who are simply missing the beach?

Guess who else also has nightmares when thinking about that game? Broncos fans. Probably Manning as well since the Legion of Boom completely had #18’s number.

Realists, I honestly thought that the Baltimore Ravens’ 34-7 thrashing of the New York Giants was a horrific Super Bowl performance. Last year’s by the Broncos topped that one in a major way.

Denver looked as if they had a night on the town in Manhattan the Saturday night prior to the game. Honestly, was there anything about that Super Bowl that was worth watching?

Some predicted Seahawks wins, but not 43-8. Others prior to Sunday’s rematch may also have called Seattle victories, but some may have gone out there and tried to call a shot of 43-8 this time.

Fortunately, that did not happen. No flashbacks this time.

After a Seahawks three and out, Denver got possession. The first play was a Montee Ball run right into the Seahawks defensive line. Kam Chancellor forced a fumble as Ball dropped the ball (too easy). K.J. Wright would recover the rock for Seattle.

The Seahawks looked to capitalize with seven points and had 3rd and goal from the one yard line, before the Broncos put together a goal line stand. Steven Hauschka had to give Seattle their first points of the game with a 20 yard field goal and a 3-0 lead.

A commandment of football in 2014 is “Thou Shalt Not Settle for Field Goals when playing Peyton Manning”. The Broncos on their next possession put together a 15 play, 75 yard drive that also had them at 2nd and goal yardage. Instead, Denver couldn’t reach the end zone and also had to settle for three points courtesy of a Brandon McManus field goal. 3-3 tie.

Three Seahawks possessions later in the second quarter, they would hit paydirt for the first time this game when Russell Wilson connected with Ricardo Lockette for a 39 yard touchdown. That made the score 10-3 Seahawks.

The next possession for the Broncos featured what appeared to be a fumble from DeMaryius Thomas, and it being forced by Earl Thomas. Seattle then recovered the football as well. The play was later reversed by a referee (whose last name wasn’t Thomas) and ruled an incomplete pass. But, the Broncos would have to settle for a three and out anyway. #18 seemed to be no match for the 12s.

The next Seattle drive to close out the first half might as well have been sponsored by Skittles. Five of the plays were either runs by Marshawn Lynch or short passes culminating in a Beast Mode activation into the end zone for a 17-3 Seattle advantage.

The first three Denver drives in the third quarter resulted in punts as did the first pair of Seahawks possessions. Seattle looked to extend its lead three plays into quarter number three. The chains were able to be moved to the 28 yard line before Hauschka’s 46 yard field goal attempt was wide left.

The Broncos defense gave them momentum with a huge play to begin the fourth quarter. After another punt from the offense (uncharacteristic by Manning standards), a run for Lynch of no gain and a sack of Wilson back to the ‘Hawks one yard line set up Nate Irving and T.J. Ward for a tackle of Lynch in the end zone. Safety. 17-5.

The offense couldn’t get anything going and once again had to punt, but the defense conjured another big play when Chris Harris picked off Wilson on a pass intended for Percy Harvin. Harris returned it 13 yards to the Seahawks 19 yard line. With excellent field position, the Broncos finally found a touchdown when Manning threw a short pass to Julius Thomas for six. McManus’ extra point was good for a 17-12 game.

The next drive for the Broncos also appeared to be productive, and had Wes Welker as the primary target for Manning. Except, he threw to Welker one time too many, and with 3rd & 11 at the 24 facing another field goal try from McManus, Manning was picked off by Kam Chancellor. He returned the football 52 yards to the Broncos side of the field.

All the Seahawks had to do was take care of the football and their second win was all but assured seemingly. But, the Broncos had to burn their remaining timeouts. A 28 yard field goal from Hauschka was true, extending the Seattle lead to 20-12.

59 seconds left in the fourth quarter is an enternity for QBs like Brady, Ryan, Rodgers, and Manning. Despite several incompletions, A 42 yard throw to Emmanuel Sanders and a 24 yard TD pass to Jacob Tamme brought Denver within two at 20-18. DeMaryius Thomas completed Manning’s two point conversion pass to tie the game.

Overtime. If only the Broncos played like this last February in Jersey, don’t you think?

The Seahawks would get the football to start the period of free football, and efficiently moved the chains. Wilson and the Seattle offense only faced third down twice (and both were under five yards). The culmination of the drive and game was a 6 yard run from Lynch and it began raining Skittles in a city that knows a lot about rain. Seahawks won 26-20.

• Wilson—24/34, 258 yards, 2 TDs, 1 INT
• Lynch—26 carries for 88 yards, 1 TD
• Baldwin—4 receptions, 56 yards

• Manning—31/49, 303 yards, 2 TDs, 1 INT
• Ball—14 carries, 39 yards
• Sanders—11 receptions, 149 yards

Week 4—DEN bye, SEA bye

Black and Gold Rush

Pittsburgh has been a team that dating back to the tail end of last season has been playing the way we envision most Steeler teams to perform. They dropped 30 on the Cleveland Browns in Cleveland, but only were able to tally six against a Baltimore Ravens team that is beak deep in controversy.

That controversy that has engulfed the Ravens seeped over to the Carolina Panthers and the status of Greg Hardy, who was himself booked on domestic violence charges. The Panthers would eventually release Greg Hardy the day of last week’s game in Detroit as the public pressure in and outside of the Carolinas finally forced Carolina to acquiesce to their fans.

But, the Panthers were 2-0 coming into this game whereas the Steelers were 1-1 after last week on Thursday Night Football. Two consecutive weeks and two consecutive primetime matchups for the Steelers.

The stadium in Charlotte that the Panthers play in is called Bank of America Field. The ATM machine this day was empty for the most part.

The first possession for Pittsburgh resulted in a punt. The first for Carolina ended in a 40 yard field goal off the foot of Graham Gano (don’t you know) and a Panthers lead of 3-0.

A pair of Steelers possessions later, they two would put a trey on the scoreboard. With 4th and 12 from the Carolina 24, Shaun Suisham’s 42 yard field goal gave Pittsburgh its first points to tie this game.

Carolina was stopped shy of the first down on their following drive forcing another punt. Antonio Brown returned the football to the 14, but an illegal block in the back moved the ball half the distance to the goal in the other direction, meaning the Steelers would have to start from the seven yard line.

Seven, shmeven. Pittsburgh, despite a 2nd and 13 play at a beginning point in their drive were able to advance the football to the Panthers’ three-yard line. Le’Veon Bell was driven back for a loss of three yards. An incomplete pass set up another Suisham field goal (24 yards) and a 6-3 lead.

That lead extended to 9-3 on the last Pittsburgh scoring drive of the half. Facing 4th and 9 from Carolina’s 27, Suisham would tack on another three points as his 45-yarder was true. 9-3 Steelers at the half.

As NBC would say, so began Act II.

Carolina began that act with penalties and turnovers. The Panthers got virtually nothing going on their opening drive of the second half, and it resulted in a sack of Cam Newton for a loss of eight yards. Jarvis Jones caused the fumble, and Jason Worilds recovered the football.

After only getting six yards, the Steelers set up another Suisham field goal…except Wes Horton was booked for encroachment. This moved the chains to the seven yard line and gave the Steelers a fresh set of downs. Pittsburgh made the Panthers pay when Ben Roethlisberger connected with Antonio Brown for a seven yard TD strike and a 16-3 advantage.

The ensuing Panthers drive had efficient moving of the football to the 22 yard line of the Steelers. But, three incomplete passes later, Graham Gano kicked a 40 yard field goal as Carolina would only put up three at 16-6.

The Steelers were having none of that. Business picked up on Pittsburgh’s side of the field. A huge 81 yard run play from Bell had Pittsburgh in the driver’s seat again from the Panthers’ 11 yard line.

They would advance to the one yard line at 1st & goal, but an offensive pass interference flag cost them ten yards. But after a four yard run from Bell came a seven yard pass to Brown for Roethlisberger and the Steelers’ second TD of the game. 23-6.

It took four quarters, but early in the fourth, the Panthers would find their way in the end zone courtesy of a Newton pass to Greg Olsen for 37 yards. This brought Carolina to within 23-13.

A fumble recovery in the end zone by Robert Golden would broaden Pittsburgh’s advantage to 30-13. The ensuing Steelers possession lasted eight plays for 98 yards and included a 30 yard throw to Heath Miller (and a declined illegal contact flag on Melvin White) and a 50 yard run by LeGarrette Blount. He would get his six points on an eight yard run for a TD to put the game out of reach for Carolina at 37-13.

When the Panthers offense took the field again, Derek Anderson (yes, that one, Cleveland Browns fans) was on the field. Two plays of circa 30 yards to Brenton Bersin and Kelvin Benjamin (for a TD) brought the Panthers to within 37-19 before the two point conversion attempt failed.

Three minutes later, the Panthers defense would not get off the field for its offense to regain possession and this one as a good as done.

• Roethlisberger—22/30, 196 yards, 2 TDs
• Bell—21 carries, 147 yards
• Brown—10 receptions, 90 yards

• Newton—24/35, 250 yards, 1 TD
• Stewart—5 carries, 31 yards
• Benjamin—8 receptions, 115 yards, 1 TD

Week 4: TB at PIT, CAR at BAL

Other Games

Aug 23, 2013; Green Bay, WI, USA; The NFL Logo on the goalpost padding during warmups prior to the game between the Seattle Seahawks and Green Bay Packers at Lambeau Field. Seattle won 17-10. Mandatory Credit: Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports

Falcons defeat Buccaneers 56-14

Chargers defeat Bills 22-10

Giants defeat Texans 30-17

Saints defeat Vikings 20-19

Bengals defeat Titans 33-7

Ravens defeat Browns 23-21

Colts defeat Jaguars 44-17

Patriots defeat Raiders 16-9

Cardinals defeat 49ers 23-14

Chiefs defeat Dolphins 34-15

Bears vs. Jets (8:30, Monday Night Football)