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The Raptors 2019-20 Season has come to an end. Hosts Alex Wong and William Lou recap the series vs the Boston Celtics, discuss the struggles of Pascal Siakam, the brilliance of Kyle Lowry, and chat what's next for free agents Fred VanVlett, Serge Ibaka and Marc Gasol. Read More »
INGLEWOOD, Calif. — The Los Angeles Rams ran through their tunnel and into empty SoFi Stadium for the very first time amid sparkling fireworks, flashing lights and the prerecorded cheers of fans watching from home.So this isn't the Hollywood ending that anybody pictured on a landmark night for professional football's return to Los Angeles.The Rams will still take plenty of sweet memories from this inaugural game.Malcolm Brown rushed for a career-high 79 yards and two touchdowns, Jared Goff passed for 275 yards and Los Angeles beat the Dallas Cowboys 20-17 on Sunday night.“It was a special day,” said Goff, who went 20 for 31. “It's not the way you'd imagine it, but I think we’ll look back on this a long time from now and realize the importance of it, but it was really cool to go out there and get a win and play really well.”Robert Woods had six catches for 105 yards as the Rams improved to 4-0 in season openers under coach Sean McVay and spoiled the debut of Mike McCarthy, Dallas' first new head coach in a decade.“To be at this stadium for the first time and break it in with a win, that’s what you work for, that’s what you practice for,” said Rams defensive tackle Aaron Donald, who had the first sack in stadium history.Ezekiel Elliott rushed for 96 yards and a touchdown and caught another scoring pass, but the Cowboys began a season of high expectations by losing three starters to injury in the first half and then failing to mount a late comeback in a scoreless fourth quarter for both teams.“We needed to find a way to win it, and we didn’t get it done,” McCarthy said. “I thought we did a real good job getting ready. We are playing a team that has experience. You can see how efficient they are on offence in their fourth year. Our defence played a lot of snaps.”Dak Prescott passed for 266 yards and a touchdown, but Dallas managed three points on its six drives in the second half.Dallas managed only 15 net yards on its final 10 plays of the game. Michael Gallup made a long catch that would have put the Cowboys in field goal range with 21 seconds left, but was called for offensive pass interference for contact with Jalen Ramsey.“It was a huge chance,” Prescott said. “We had a big two-minute drive at the end of the half. We were still able to move and get some progress, but we didn’t get it done. But it is Game 1.”The opening of Rams owner Stan Kroenke's $5 billion stadium project was a historic night for the Los Angeles area, albeit one that should have been much more festive. The coronavirus pandemic prevented Rams fans from christening the palatial stadium, which is scheduled to host next season's Super Bowl, the 2023 college football championship game and the 2028 Los Angeles Olympics.“You realize how much you appreciate the crowd,” McVay said. “I thought I guys did a great job bringing their own energy. I was really pleased with the energy we had from our sideline, but when that’s the only thing you’re hearing, it is eerie. What a cool thing to be able to get a win for Mr. Kroenke tonight, (but) I think I'll remember the silence.”THE OPENERThe Rams got the ball first in their new home, and Goff hit Woods with a short pass that turned into a 20-yard gain on the building's first play from scrimmage. The 75-yard opening drive ended with Brown's 1-yard plunge for the stadium's first touchdown.“It’s exciting to do that,” Brown said. “I feel like I may live forever, know what I’m saying?”BIG PLAYWhile the Cowboys vehemently disagreed with the pass interference call on Gallup, Ramsey felt equally strongly.“If they hadn’t have called that, I would have been really upset,” Ramsey said. “That was clear as day, in my opinion.”BIG STOPAfter calling a conservative play on third down, McCarthy curiously went for it on fourth and 3 from the Los Angeles 11 with about 12 minutes to play. Rams rookie safety Jordan Fuller made a superb tackle on fellow rookie CeeDee Lamb before the marker.“I realize it was a three-point game, but there was time left but we were playing well,” McCarthy said. “My mindset was trying to create more momentum.”DEBUTSLamb had five catches for 59 yards in the first-round pick's first NFL appearance.Van Jefferson's first career reception was a beautiful 31-yard grab in the second quarter, but it was the promising Rams rookie's only catch.Cam Akers rushed for 39 yards on 14 carries in the Rams second-round pick's NFL debut.Rookie kicker Samuel Sloman put his first career field goal attempt off the left upright from 29 yards out, but he recovered to hit two field goals for the Rams.INJURIESThe Cowboys lost starting linebacker Leighton Vander Esch to a collarbone injury in the first quarter. Right tackle Cam Erving and tight end Blake Jarwin both didn't return from knee injuries in the second quarter.Rams tight end Gerald Everett injured his back in the second half.UP NEXTCowboys: Host the Atlanta Falcons in their home opener on Sunday.Rams: Visit the Philadelphia Eagles on Sunday to begin four road games in five weeks.___More AP NFL: https://apnews.com/NFL and https://twitter.com/AP_NFLGreg Beacham, The Associated Press
EDMONTON — While the New York Islanders were celebrating Brock Nelson scoring the first goal of the game, Tampa Bay Lightning centre Yanni Gourde was steaming about giving it up. Coach Jon Cooper decided to keep him on the ice for some redemption.“I’m not really happy out there after that goal,” Gourde said. “I’m like, ’Let’s go back out there and try to have an O-zone shift where we can actually get momentum back.'”They did more than that. Gourde set up Blake Coleman to tie it 15 seconds after Nelson's goal, Ondrej Palat added another 12 seconds later and the quick-strike Lightning moved within a victory of the Stanley Cup Final with a 4-1 victory Sunday in Game 4 of the Eastern Conference Final.“Getting scored on doesn’t sit real well, but credit to Coop keeping us out there, giving us a shot to go get it back,” Coleman said. “Any time you can respond quickly in a game, it’s going to swing the momentum right back. Then obviously our big boys took over from there.”Those big boys were the Lightning's best players. Brayden Point scored in his return after missing Game 3 before leaving in the third with injury, fellow top liners Palat and Nikita Kucherov set him up for that goal, defenceman Victor Hedman played 29:12 and goaltender Andrei Vasilevskiy made 26 saves.That combination has Tampa Bay the verge of its first Cup Final appearance since 2015.“All the guys are pretty excited to play for the big prize, but we have business to do here,” said Vasilevskiy, who has played every minute of every Lightning game this post-season. “We have to win the fourth one first."The Lightning won their third game of the series during the furious 27 second stretch with three goals. That's also where the Islanders lost it“You want to follow up a goal with a good shift and have a good response and kind of stay on it, and they had a better response than we did and got two quick ones,” Nelson said. “That was the difference: really 30 seconds there. If you hang on there for a bit, it’s a different game.”Coach Barry Trotz wants strong shifts out of his players to start and end each period and following any goal. “We didn’t do it twice,” he said. “That’s on us.”It's also evidence of the firepower the Lightning have assembled, from homegrown talent like Palat, Point, Kucherov and Vasilevskiy and trade-deadline pickups Coleman and Barclay Goodrow. In Goodrow and free agent signings Patrick Maroon and Zach Bogosian, general manager Julien BriseBois added some muscle to all that talent, and that is giving his team confidence to go toe-to-toe with the Islanders in a series that's getting chippy.“We’re not going to back down from anybody,” Coleman said.Players from each team had some discussions during pregame warmups, Trotz inserted tough guy Ross Johnston into the Islanders lineup for more tough toughness and tensions rose at times. New York’s Matt Martin shot the puck at the first period horn, earning an unsportsmanlike conduct penalty and inciting some pushing and shoving, but the result hinged more on the play for 27 seconds and two big Tampa Bay shifts.“It’s a game — it’s not a shift,” Cooper said. “Part of my job is make sure they’ve got the confidence to go do their job, and I have full confidence in them and they delivered."Point delivered a goal and an assist while clearly playing through some pain. He didn't play another shift after getting tangled up with Islanders defenceman Adam Pelech early in the third, and his status for Game 5 is a question mark after showing all the reasons he's Tampa Bay's leading scorer in the post-season.“He was all over it,” Cooper said of Point. “He was in on everything and setting up goals, scoring goals and he’s a big part of our team. We have to manage him. It’s the playoffs, and these guys are playing hard, hard minutes. You watch the intensity in these games and they just keep increasing with every game that’s played and every round that’s played.”NOTES: Maroon scored an empty netter with 2:24 left. ... Michael Dal Colle came out for the Islanders to get Johnston in. ... Islanders goaltender Semyon Varlamov finished with 32 saves. ... The Islanders announced injured forwards Casey Cizikas and Tom Kuhnackl left the NHL bubble and are out for the remainder of the playoffs.UP NEXTGame 5 is Tuesday night.___More AP NHL: https://apnews.com/NHL and https://twitter.com/AP_SportsStephen Whyno, The Associated Press
NEW ORLEANS — Drew Brees and Tom Brady, the two leading passers in NFL history, couldn't muster vintage performances in the first NFL game featuring two starting quarterbacks in their 40s.But while Brees avoided game-turning mishaps with an offence he's led since 2006, Brady suffered some costly cross-ups with his new team.Brady threw two interceptions in his Tampa Bay debut, Alvin Kamara scored touchdowns running and receiving, and the New Orleans Saints beat the Buccaneers 34-23 on Sunday.“I made some just bad, terrible turnovers,” Brady said. "I obviously have got to do a lot better job.”The first of Brady’s interceptions led to Kamara’s 6-yard touchdown run. The second pick thrown by the new, 43-year-old Bucs QB — who left the New England Patriots in free agency after 20 years and six Super Bowl triumphs — was returned 36 yards for a touchdown by Janoris Jenkins.“Win the turnover battle like we did, have a turnover for a touchdown, you’re a 90-something per cent winner in those games,” Saints coach Sean Payton said. ”Just a lot of things happened in that game that despite how you play, those things can help you win games. The energy and effort I was pleased with.”The 41-year-old Brees passed for 160 yards and two TDs. He did not turn the ball over and took only one sack. His first TD pass was a dump-off to Kamara from 12 yards out. In the fourth quarter he hit free-agent signing Emmanuel Sanders for a 5-yard score.“I’d probably say I played awful,” Brees said. “Certainly, we are used to playing at a much higher level offensively and especially in the passing game. So, we’ll get that back on track.”Still, Brees found satisfaction in beating Brady's Bucs.“Of course, it’s significant and it’s unique and I’d be lying to you if I said to you it didn’t mean a little bit more," Brees said. "I've got so much love and respect for (Brady) and what he’s able to accomplish.“We played against each other in college, for goodness sake, in 1999,” Brees continued. “At the end of the day, I think we would both pinch ourselves if you told us back then we’d have the opportunity to play this long and be a part of so many great teams and so many great moments, historic moments.”Few witnessed this latest bit of history in person, with government leaders and the Saints having agreed that no fans should attend the opener amid the coronavirus pandemic.That turned the normally deafening 73,000-seat Superdome into more of an echo chamber. When Wil Lutz’s field goal put New Orleans up 17-7, the squeaking of pulleys could be heard across the stadium as the net behind the goal post was lowered.“It sort of felt like we were at a Tampa Bay game,” Saints defensive end Cameron Jordan said.Brady compared the environment to “a scrimmage.”“But obviously, it counts,” he added. “We’ve got to look each other in the eye and all work harder, put more urgency on the things we have to do.”Tight end Jared Cook caught five passes for 80 yards for New Orleans, highlighted by a 46-yard reception down the left side that set up Sanders' TD.Brady was 15 of 28 passing for 157 yards and one TD through the first 54 minutes. He padded his numbers in garbage time, finishing with 239 yards and two TDs, the second scoring strike going to Mike Evans with 2:41 left.Tampa Bay's opening drive was promising for Brady, who the Bucs hope can lead them to their first playoff appearance since the 2007 season.He lofted a 26-yard completion to Chris Godwin along the right sideline, drew a pass interference penalty with a 22-yard attempt to Mike Evans and capped the drive with a 2-yard keeper, after which he emphatically spiked the ball.It was a fleeting, triumphant moment for the Bucs in a game defined more, in the end, by their new star's mistakes.SOCIAL JUSTICEBoth teams largely stood along the sidelines during the national anthem.One exception was Saints safety and Players Coalition co-founder Malcolm Jenkins, who trotted to the Saints' bench area after the anthem had finished.FORTUITOUS MOVESThe Saints saw two players activated from the practice squad come up with big special teams plays. Defensive end Margus Hunt blocked a 54-yard field goal attempt. Receiver Bennie Fowler recovered a muffed kickoff at the Tampa Bay 18 in the fourth quarter, setting up a 21-yard field goal that made it 34-17 with 8:01 left.INTERFERENCEThe Saints were flagged four times for defensive pass interference for 101 yards. All of those calls occurred during the Bucs' first three scoring drives. A 33-yard interference penalty against Tampa Bay at its own 6-yard line set up Kamara's second touchdown of the game. Officials called defensive pass interference six times for 149 yards on both teams.INJURY REPORTBuccaneers: Evans played after missing practice the past week with a hamstring injury. His only catch was his late, 2-yard TD.Saints: Two-time All-Pro WR Michael Thomas appeared to be limping in the fourth quarter of a game in which he had just three catches for 17 yards. New RB Ty Montgomery appeared shaken up after special teams play but was able to walk to the sideline.UP NEXTBuccaneers: Continue NFC South play when Brady makes his home debut against Carolina on Sunday.Saints: Take part in the first NFL game played in Las Vegas, the Raiders' home opener on Monday night, Sept. 21.___More AP NFL: https://apnews.com/NFL and https://twitter.com/AP_NFLBrett Martel, The Associated Press
SANTA CLARA, Calif. — Kyler Murray used the new toy Arizona got him this off-season to get his second season off to a rousing start.Murray connected on 14 passes to newcomer DeAndre Hopkins, including the throw that set up Kenyan Drake's go-ahead 1-yard score with 5:03 to play that led the Cardinals over the San Francisco 49ers 24-20 on Sunday.Murray threw for 230 yards and a touchdown and ran for 91 yards and another score to help the Cardinals overcome a pair of fourth-quarter deficits to beat the defending NFC champion 49ers in a smoky opener at an empty stadium.“I knew we had something special the day I walked into this building,” Hopkins said. “This team works. How Kyler and this team work. I’ve been around a lot of great people and Kyler works like it’s his last day on this Earth ... Nothing is a surprise about what happened today.”Hopkins was acquired in a trade this off-season from Houston and took little time to make an impact. His 151 yards receiving made him one of five players with at least 14 catches and 100 yards receiving in the season openerHis 33-yard pass to Hopkins got the ball down to the 1 and then Drake ran it in on the next play to give Arizona the lead.Jimmy Garoppolo led the 49ers down to the 16 before throwing an incomplete pass to Trent Taylor on fourth-and-5 that ended the comeback attempt.“We were in that situation plenty of times last year," Garoppolo said. "When you get in those situations, obviously it’s a little different today without the crowd, that game-day feel wasn’t there. It just comes down to execution. In the last minutes like that, every play is crucial, every yard is crucial. We just didn’t execute.”Garoppolo threw a 5-yard TD pass to Jerick McKinnon to give San Francisco a 20-17 lead with 8:38 to play before Murray led a late comeback.Murray had given the Cardinals the lead earlier in the fourth with a 22-yard scramble and his running ability wore down San Francisco’s defence as the game went on.“This is the most proud I’ve been of him to date because that’s a tough defence," coach Kliff Kingsbury said. "You get those monsters coming after you for four quarters, it’s not easy to sit back there and continue to hang in the pocket, continue to make plays with your feet and he just kept fighting.”Garoppolo finished 19 for 33 for 259 yards and two scores, also connecting on a 76-yarder to Raheem Mostert in the first quarter.SMOKY SKIESThere had been concern all week about the status of the game because of poor air conditions from fires across Northern California. The Air Quality Index remained below the 200 threshold and the game was played as scheduled.RACIAL JUSTICEThe 49ers stood on the goal line as a team during the playing of “Lift Every Voice and Sing.” McKinnon and receiver Richie James Jr. kneeled during the national anthem. The Cardinals remained in the locker room for both.BLOCKEDThe Niners were in control of the game early with a 10-0 lead until Ezekiel Turner broke through and blocked a punt by Mitch Wishnowsky. The Cardinals recovered at the 10 and scored on the next play on a pass from Murray to Chase Edmonds.SAFETY FIRSTSan Francisco got its first interception from a safety in nearly two years when Jaquiski Tartt came up with a tip from teammate Dre Greenlaw. Tartt also had the previous interception from a Niners safety on Oct. 28, 2018, against Arizona’s Josh Rosen.SWITCHING SIDESNiners CB Richard Sherman moved around and mostly played the wide side of the field rather than spending the day on the defensive left side. According to NFL Next Gen Stats, Sherman had 23 snaps on the right side, nearly twice as many as he had all last season. Hopkins had three catches for 22 yards on 15 plays going against Sherman, compared to 10 catches for 96 yards against Emmanuel Moseley.INJURY REPORTCardinals: S Jalen Thompson left the game with an ankle injury in the first half. ... C Mason Cole left in the second half with a hamstring injury.49ers: James left in the second half with a hamstring injury, leaving San Francisco with just three healthy receivers. ... TE George Kittle played the second half despite a lower-leg injury but wasn't targeted in 30 snaps after halftime.UP NEXTCardinals: Host Washington on Sunday.49ers: Visit New York Jets on Sunday.___More AP NFL: https://apnews.com/NFL and https://twitter.com/AP_NFLJosh Dubow, The Associated Press
It took more than four hours, and a tiebreak in the fifth set, but Dominic Thiem won the US Open.
CINCINNATI — Joe Burrow ran 23 yards for a touchdown in his NFL debut and put the Bengals in range for a dramatic, last-minute win. Instead, he ended up like so many Cincinnati quarterbacks before him, wondering what the heck just happened.They lost a game Cincinnati-style: Chargers 16, Bengals 13.The Heisman Trophy winner and national champion from LSU threw an interception on a shovel pass to thwart one late scoring chance, and he watched as Randy Bullock missed a 31-yard field goal — Bullock's calf cramped — with 2 seconds left Sunday, clinching the Chargers' win.There were no fans at Paul Brown Stadium, which might have been for the best.“I made too many mistakes to win the game,” Burrow said.The only rookie quarterback to start the first week of the season got a rough introduction to the NFL. Without a preseason, Burrow was taking his first snaps in a game.A line anchored by Joey Bosa and Melvin Ingram III pestered him and held him to 23 of 36 passing for 192 yards with three sacks and a costly interception. Burrow overthrew open receivers John Ross and A.J. Green for what would have been touchdowns.Still, he had a chance for the dramatic win.He moved the Bengals to the LA 23-yard line in the closing minutes and made a rookie mistake, forcing a shovel pass that Ingram picked off.“I missed A.J. on a deep ball, I missed John on a deep ball, I threw the interception — that just can't happen,” Burrow said.With no timeouts, he moved the Bengals into range one last time, but Green was called for pushing off in the end zone and Bullock missed his kick well to the right.“I was happy as hell when he missed the field goal,” Chargers coach Anthony Lynn said. “It's hard to win a game in this league.”Bullock grabbed his left calf, which he said cramped when he planted and affected the kick. Bullock said that's never happened to him.“I guess that was surprising for everyone,” Bullock said.Los Angeles got the better of the matchup between teams that picked in the top 6 of the draft. Both took quarterbacks, but the Chargers decided to let Justin Herbert watch and learn while Tyrod Taylor moved into Philip Rivers' role.Taylor finished 16 of 30 for 208 yards. Joshua Kelley ran 5 yards for a touchdown in the fourth quarter.Cincinnati won two games last season, giving it the first overall pick, and has dropped 22 of its last 25 overall.The Bengals took a low-risk approach with Burrow, using a lot of short passes. Burrow was under consistent pressure from the Chargers' line.“He did a good job of leading his guys, played big at times when they needed him to and he did a good job of controlling the game," Taylor said.His first NFL score came on a designed draw play that surprised the Chargers. The middle of LA's defence opened, and Burrow ran 23 yards untouched, slamming the ball to the ground in celebration.The two late drives that ended with an interception and missed field goal provided a spark of what could be.“Unbelievable,” Green said. "Man, that guy don't flinch. The way he handled himself on that last drive was unbelievable.“We've got a special one in Joe.”SOCIAL JUSTICEPlayers stood at the goal lines and linked arms — a few raised fists — while “Lift Every Voice and Sing” was played after pregame warm-ups, and then headed to the locker rooms. They returned and gathered at midfield, linking arms, for the national anthem.INJURIESChargers: Two injuries forced a shuffle on the offensive line. C Mike Pouncey was inactive with a hip injury. LG Dan Feeney moved to centre and Forrest Lamp took his spot. RG guard Trai Turner was out with a knee injury, replaced by Ryan Groy. ... LB Drue Tranquill hurt his left ankle and was carted off in the first quarter.Bengals: DT Geno Atkins was out with a shoulder injury that prevented him from practicing last week. ... RG Xavier Su'a-Filo hurt his left ankle in the third quarter.UP NEXTThe Chargers open SoFi Stadium against Kansas City, which beat Houston 34-20 on Thursday night in the season opener.The Bengals play at Cleveland on Thursday night. Cincinnati beat Cleveland 33-23 at Paul Brown Stadium to end last season, one of the Bengals' two wins.___More AP NFL: https://apnews.com/NFL and https://twitter.com/AP_NFLJoe Kay, The Associated Press
Chicago Cubs right-hander Alec Mills has thrown a no-hitter against the Milwaukee Brewers, the second of the shortened MLB season.
ATLANTA — The Seattle Seahawks let Russell Wilson do the cooking.The only thing he burned was the Atlanta Falcons.Showing what he can do when given a chance to open up the offence, Wilson threw four touchdown passes to lead the Seahawks to a 38-25 victory over the Falcons in the season opener Sunday.Wilson dished out throws to nine receivers, finishing 31 of 35 for 322 yards. He also carried the ball three times for a team-high 29 yards rushing.“We wanted to spread the ball around,” Wilson said. “We wanted to get the ball to a lot of different guys. We wanted to be aggressive in our approach.”That sort of talk will surely be pleasing to Seahawks fans, who have pleaded with the team to “Let Russ Cook” — essentially a call to be more aggressive offensively from the start rather than relying on Wilson to keep leading dramatic comebacks.How did that work out?The Seahawks threw on 21 of their first 35 plays. More tellingly, Wilson dropped back to pass on seven of 12 first-down plays in the opening half, and ran it himself two other times. There were only three handoffs in those situations.“Russell was in total command of the game," Seattle coach Pete Carroll said.Wilson threw a pair of TD passes in the first quarter as Seattle built a 14-12 halftime lead. He added two more in the third quarter to put the Falcons away in a game played with no fans at Mercedes-Benz Stadium because of the coronavirus pandemic.The biggest play of all came after the Falcons made what looked to be a crucial stop, leaving the Seahawks with fourth-and-5 at the Atlanta 38. The offence stayed on the field, but instead of going for the first down with a short throw, Wilson lofted one to DK Metcalf, who was streaking toward the end zone.Metcalf beat cornerback Isaiah Oliver and hauled in the perfectly thrown ball without breaking stride to push Seattle to a 21-12 lead.“They made a good stop on third down and were all celebrating,” Wilson said. “I looked at the sideline and said, ‘OK, let’s go after ’em.’ I wanted to be aggressive.”On the ensuing possession, Atlanta attempted a fake punt on fourth-and-2 from its own 33. Blocking back Sharrod Neasman took a direct snap and had enough for the first down on a run up the middle, only to fumble the ball away. It was recovered by Seattle's Freddie Swain at the 36.Five plays later, Wilson zipped his fourth TD pass of the game, a 7-yarder to new tight end Greg Olsen. The 35-year-old was let go after spending the last nine years at Carolina, where he faced the Falcons twice a season.Wilson hooked up with running back Chris Carson on his first two scoring passes.A 3-yard TD toss was set up by a 41-yard pass interference penalty against Ricardo Allen that erased a third-and-23 hole. After the Falcons were stopped on a fourth-and-3 play from their own 40, Wilson went to Carson again on a screen pass for a 19-yard score.The Falcons outgained the Seahawks 506 yards to 383, with Julio Jones, Calvin Ridley and Russell Gage all collecting more than 100 receiving yards. But Atlanta came up short all four times it tried to convert on fourth down.It was not a promising start to a make-or-break year for Falcons coach Dan Quinn, who kept his job despite back-to-back losing seasons. He likely must lead Atlanta to the playoffs to return in 2021.The only bright spot for Atlanta was Matt Ryan going past John Elway for ninth on the NFL career passing yardage list. Matty Ice was 37 of 54 for 450 yards and two touchdowns, the second-highest yardage total of his career.Even that wasn't enough against Wilson.“Just being himself,” Falcons defensive tackle Grady Jarrett said. "He’s a premier player in this league for a reason.”TAKING A KNEEBoth teams protested racial injustice with a dramatic gesture on the first play of the game.As the opening kickoff by Seattle’s Jason Myers sailed through the end zone, all 22 players remained in place and took a knee. After a few seconds, they stood back up, trotted off the field and the game carried on with the Falcons taking the ball at their own 25.“It was good to have both organizations come together and do something together,” Jarrett said. “I think it will help spark conversations for change.”Civil rights leader John Lewis, a longtime congressman from Atlanta who died in July, also was honoured as every player wore white armbands with the initials “JL” and the team logos.In addition, the Falcons made Lewis an honorary captain. A black jersey with his name was draped over an empty spot on the Atlanta bench.INJURY REPORTSeahawks: DE Rasheem Green went out in the first half with a shoulder injury.Falcons: Gage took a shot to the head on a helmet-to-helmet hit by new Seattle S Jamal Adams in the second quarter. After being evaluated for a possible concussion, Gage was cleared to return in the second half. Adams was not penalized on the play but could face discipline from the league when the play is reviewed.UP NEXTSeahawks: Host Cam Newton and the New England Patriots in their home opener next Sunday.Falcons: Travel to Dallas to take on the Cowboys next Sunday.___Follow Paul Newberry on Twitter at https://twitter.com/pnewberry1963 and find his work at https://apnews.com/search/paulnewberry___More AP NFL: https://apnews.com/NFL and https://twitter.com/AP_NFLPaul Newberry, The Associated Press
ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. — Josh Allen and the Buffalo Bills got the season off to a throwing start.In overseeing three consecutive first-half touchdown drives, Allen became Buffalo’s first quarterback to top 300 yards passing in nearly three-plus years in a 27-17 season-opening win over the New York Jets on Sunday.The Bills overcame injuries to two starting linebackers, while Allen overcame his own sloppiness in picking apart a rebuilt Jets secondary after star safety Jamal Adams forced his trade to Seattle this off-season.“We wanted to start off and get the ball into our playmakers' hands outside and let them do their thing,” Allen said. “But we still have to find more ways to get into the end zone. We left too many points out there. I take that responsibility on myself.”Allen was referring to losing two fumbles in the first half, both times inside Jets territory.Blemishes aside, Allen spread the ball to his upgraded group of receivers, which now features the addition of Stefon Diggs, in finishing 33 of 46 for 312 yards with two touchdowns, plus another one rushing. Tyrod Taylor, Allen's predecessor, had 329 yards passing in a overtime loss to Miami on Dec. 24, 2016.,Diggs had eight catches for a team-leading 86 yards in his Bills debut after being acquired in a trade with Minnesota in March. John Brown had six catches for 70 yards and a touchdown.Buffalo’s defence was a force despite losing Matt Milano to a hamstring injury in the second quarter, and after the outside linebacker intercepted Sam Darnold’s weak pass over the middle. Middle linebacker Tremaine Edmunds did not return after hurting his shoulder while trying to tackle Jets receiver Jamison Crowder, who scored on a 69-yard touchdown catch and run, which briefly cut Buffalo’s lead to 21-10 with 5:10 left in the third quarter.The Bills defence, however, came through on New York’s next possession. Safety Jordan Poyer stripped the ball from tight end Chris Herndon, and the fumble was recovered by Jerry Hughes at the Jets 38 two plays into the fourth quarter.The turnover led to Tyler Bass hitting a 22-yard field goal — after the rookie missed his first two attempts wide right.Coach Sean McDermott was unable to provide any updates on his injured players, but was impressed how the Bills persevered through injuries, turnovers, and Bass’ inconsistencies.“We’ll see what happens this week. We hope and pray we get them back,” McDermott said of Milano and Edmunds.“There’s going to be adversity like there was today, whether it was injuries or change of momentum,” he added. “And I think we’ve learned that we’ve got to continue to push through and I thought our team did that today.”Very little went right for the Jets, who opened with three three-and-outs, combined for 23 yards of offence and one first down on their first five possessions, and trailed 21-0 before the game was 25 minutes old.“It was about as bad of a start offensively as we could’ve had,” caoch Adam Gase said. “We just really did not play well. It’s disappointing in the aspect that, just watching the guys work all week and the excitement level coming into this game. We’ve got a lot to work on. We’ve got a lot of things we’ve got to get fixed.”Darnold finished 21 of 35 for 215 yards, with a touchdown and an interception in a matchup of two of the five quarterbacks selected in the first round of the 2017 draft. Crowder had seven catches for 117 yards. Josh Adams scored on a 2-yard plunge in the final minute.“I’ve got to be better and we’ve got to execute better. It’s as simple as that," said Darnold, who opened hitting just four of his 10 first attempts for 22 yards.The Jets finished without starting running back Le’Veon Bell (hamstring) and linebacker Blake Cashman (groin).New York resembled the team that opened 1-7 last season — a stretch that began with the Jets squandering a 16-0 lead at home in a 17-16 loss to the Bills — as opposed to the one that closed 6-2, including a season-ending 13-6 win at Buffalo in a game the playoff-bound Bills rested most of their starters.Ball-handling aside, Allen showed continued signs of development, which was particularly evident on his 17-yard touchdown pass to Brown, which put the Bills up 21-0.Allen made an audible after seeing Jets cornerback Pierre Desir playing 10 yards off the line of scrimmage opposite Brown. Allen threw a quick low pass, which was scooped up by Brown, who then cut into the middle for the score.ANTHEMThe Bills and Jets remained in their locker rooms for the playing of the “Star-Spangled Banner.”NO FANSThe numerous Bills and private parking lots around the stadium -- some which usual begin filling up two days before a home-opening kickoff -- were completely empty. The Bills barred fans from tailgating, and Orchard Park declined to provide business licenses to private operators.Inside Bills Stadium, the first seven rows from the field were covered in blue tarp and featured logos of team sponsors. A slogan printed on the tarps on each side of midfield read: “Bills family honours those on the front lines.”Very little crowd noise was being pumped in, and players could be heard yelling out calls and checks could be heard echoing through the empty stadium.UP NEXTJets: Host San Francisco 49ers on Sept. 20.Bills: At Miami Dolphins on Sept. 20.___More AP NFL: https://apnews.com/NFL and https://twitter.com/AP_NFLJohn Wawrow, The Associated Press
VANCOUVER — Samuel Piette says his Montreal Impact teammates showed "a lot of character" in a feisty battle against the Vancouver Whitecaps on Sunday.In a match that had a little bit of everything — including a penalty kick, a pair of red cards and a near brawl — the visiting Impact persevered for the 4-2 victory.The win keeps Montreal's hope of winning the round-robin portion of the Canadian Championships alive."I'm really proud of the boys tonight," said Piette, who scored his first-ever Major League Soccer goal in the outing. "It just shows that we're not done yet. We want to go all the way."Saphir Taider had a goal and two assists for the Impact (5-4-1), while Orji Okwonkwo and Piette each added a goal and a helper. Romell Quioto rounded out the scoring for Montreal.The Impact have been playing well offensively this season, Piette said, getting in behind their opponents' back line, but the squad hasn't always been able to finish."Sometimes it's just a matter of it being a bad day and not having the final touch to put the ball in the back of the net. And I think we had that tonight," he said."If we keep creating chances, we'll obviously pose problems for other teams and score more goals."Theo Bair scored for the Whitecaps (3-7-0), who also got an own goal from Montreal's Rudy Camacho.The young Vancouver forward struck in the eighth minute, collecting a nice ball from David Milinkovic and going for a run down the sideline, beating Camacho and Luis Binks on the way. Bair bested Montreal 'keeper Clement Diop with a long shot from outside the box that found the bottom left corner of the net.Diop was noticeably frustrated by the goal, booting the ball over the ad boards.Despite a tough start, the Impact were able to turn the game around, said coach Thierry Henry."We started to play. We started to trust the shape, our structure. And then we scored goals. It changes the game when you put the ball in the back of the net, more often than not," he said.The Whitecaps started out strong but struggled after Okwonkwo tied the game in the 15th minute, said Vancouver coach Marc Dos Santos."We became unstable, we struggled and then that penalty shot that just before the half, it hurt the team. It was tough for us to come back unfortunately," he said.The game's tense atmosphere erupted in the 57th minute after Vancouver's Lucas Cavallini drove hard toward the Montreal net, appearing to kick Diop in the head en route. He received a yellow card for the play, his second of the game.A scrum quickly broke out near the Impact net, with several players pushing and shoving. Cavallini and Diop seemed close to trading blows before they were separated by teammates.Cavallini headed to the locker room.Montreal lost its man advantage in the 70th minute when midfielder Emmanuel Maciel took out Vancouver's Cristian Dajome with a nasty tackle mid-field. He was shown the yellow card, but after video review, he was given a red and tossed from the game.Henry said he'll speak with his group about the "weird" final 20 minutes or so, but didn't want to dwell after a hard-fought victory."We won a game 4-2 away from home. We like to think that’s a good win," he said. "Was the game perfect? The game is never perfect. But we're happy with the win."Not only does the win give Montreal three crucial points in the MLS standings, it also counts toward the Canadian Championships where the Impact are looking to bump Toronto FC from first place and secure a spot in the final.The final game of the tournament's round-robin portion will come Wednesday when the 'Caps and Impact face off once again in Vancouver. Montreal needs to score at least two goals in a victory to seal first place.The winner of the round robin will face the victor of the Canadian Premier League's Island Games.NOTES: The air in the stadium was hazy with smoke from wildfires burning south of the border. Referee Pierre-Luc Lauziere called for a hydration breaks in the game's 30th and 76th minutes Sunday due to the poor air quality. ... David Milinkovic and Michael Baldisimo had assists for Vancouver ... Zachary Brault-Guillard had an assist for Montreal. This report by The Canadian Press was first published Sept. 12, 2020.Gemma Karstens-Smith, The Canadian Press
Matt Harmon gives you the five things he cares about from Sunday's Week 1 action and the five things he doesn't care about, like the Cowboys offensive line looking like a big problem and DeAndre Hopkins looking ready for takeoff in Arizona.
PHOENIX — Donovan Walton had three RBIs, and the Seattle Mariners beat the Arizona Diamondbacks 7-3 on Sunday.Jose Marmolejos had two hits and drove in a run, helping Seattle take two of three in the weekend series. Phillip Ervin scored twice and drove in a run.Casey Sadler (1-0) got the win with two scoreless innings in relief of Justin Dunn, who struggled with control issues. Seattle used six relievers the day before a doubleheader at home.“We tried to give our team every opportunity to win the ballgame,” Mariners manager Scott Servais said. “It happens. It’s a crazy season. Certainly a day heading into a doubleheader you would like to get a little bit more length out of our starter. It didn’t happen, we’ve got to adjust on the fly and that’s what we’ll do.”Josh VanMeter had two hits for Arizona, including an RBI double. Luke Weaver (1-7) allowed two runs and four hits in five innings.Walton put Seattle ahead to stay with a run-scoring groundout in the second. He had a big hit against Travis Bergen with two out in the sixth, hitting a two-run double to give the Mariners a 4-1 lead.“You try to do anything you can to help the team win,” Walton said. “All I was trying to do was just keep it short. Just get a pitch to drive for the most part.”Arizona got two back in the seventh on Christian Walker’s forceout and Kole Calhoun’s sacrifice fly. But Ervin hit an RBI double in Seattle’s two-run eighth and Kyle Lewis added a sacrifice fly in the ninth.Last-place Arizona lost for the 20th time in its last 24 games.“Overall, the entire day, we weren’t winning that first-pitch battle and that was a big difference in the line score,” Diamondbacks manager Torey Lovullo said. “They scored several runs with leadoff walks, and that’s the name of the game.”The Mariners jumped in front on Marmolejos’ two-out RBI double in the first, driving in Kyle Seager.The Diamondbacks tied it at 1 with Josh Rojas’ hustle around the bases. Rojas slid home just ahead of the tag on VanMeter’s double to right-centre in the first.Dunn walked five in two innings. He allowed one hit and struck out five.IN THE HUNTThe Mariners are in the mix for second in the AL West and a spot in the post-season. They are 1 1/2 games behind Houston. Oakland is on top of the division.“We continue to get better, working hard. We’ve got some interesting series coming up, some teams that have got winning records,” Servais said. “But our guys are looking forward to it. They’re not afraid of anything.”LOSING SEASON CLINCHEDThe Diamondbacks, with a 17-31 record, assured themselves of a losing season in 2020 with 12 games left. It’s the first one under general manager Mike Hazen and Lovullo, who both arrived before the 2017 season.“It means we’ve got to be better,” Lovullo said. “It means I’m going to need to go back and evaluate a lot of the things that happened, a lot of the things I did. I’m not going to use 60 games as an excuse. We knew it. We knew the ground rules. It may have been different, but we had plenty of time to get used to it. It’s humbling but it’s going to make us better.”AIR QUALITY CHECKServais said the club is monitoring the air quality in Seattle, which has been unhealthy due to smoke from wildfires throughout the Pacific Northwest. It could affect whether the Mariners play a scheduled doubleheader at home Monday.“Sounds like the weather may get a little bit better, Servais said. “We just have to wait and see what brings (Monday) at the ballpark.”TRAINER’S ROOMDiamondbacks: RHP Zac Gallen, who worked five innings Saturday, has been dealing with a fingernail problem on his right middle finger, Lovullo said. Gallen has been Arizona’s most consistent starter this season. Lovullo said the effect the fingernail had on Gallen’s pitching was “minimal.”UP NEXTMariners: Head home for a makeup doubleheader with the Athletics. A three-game series at home with Oakland was postponed earlier this month due to a positive test for COVID-19 among the A’s travelling party. LHP Marco Gonzales (5-2, 3.02 ERA) starts the opener for the Mariners, with the second game to be a collection of relievers with an opener.Diamondbacks: After Monday’s off day, LHP Madison Bumgarner (0-4, 7.52 ERA) is scheduled to start for Arizona in Anaheim on Tuesday against the Los Angeles Angels.___More AP MLB: https://apnews.com/MLB and https://twitter.com/AP-SportsJose M. Romero, The Associated Press
LOS ANGELES — The Dodgers gave the Astros a lot of different looks. They used eight pitchers in all, with the bullpen redeeming itself a night after a tough finish.Mookie Betts’ two-run homer highlighted a four-run fifth inning, Chris Taylor added a three-run shot, and the Dodgers defeated Houston 8-1 on Sunday night with angry Los Angeles fans letting the Astros have it again.The Dodgers took three of four in this shortened season from the team that beat them in the 2017 World Series, after which the Astros’ cheating scandal was revealed. Even with fans banned because of the coronavrius pandemic, they made their feelings known.For the second straight day, the Astros were bombarded with messages towed by planes over Dodger Stadium. “Steal This Sign Astros” read one. “Astros Cheated! Never Forget! Go Dodgers” and “Hey Astros Try Stealing This Sign!” read others.Surely, Los Angeles fans were even more piqued after the Dodgers blew a three-run lead and closer Kenley Jansen was charged with five runs in the ninth without recording an out in a 7-5 loss on Saturday.The bullpen redeemed itself Sunday, helping the Dodgers avoid their first three-game skid of the season.Brusdar Graterol and seven relievers combined on a four-hitter. Graterol opened with an inning of one-hit ball, striking out three. Jansen retired the side in the ninth, setting down Carlos Correa, Josh Reddick and Martin Maldonado — each of whom burned him in the same inning a night earlier.“I asked him how he felt and he was ready to go,” manager Dave Roberts said, adding that Jansen's “conviction, the execution was plus-plus across the board.”Victor González (3-0) got the win with two scoreless innings. He allowed one hit and struck out two.“This is the deepest, most talented ’pen by a full grade that we’ve ever had. Guys are having tremendous years and it’s a close group there,” Roberts said.Taylor slugged a three-run homer into left field — his second in as many games — with two outs in the eighth, extending the lead to 8-1.“They got all kinds of hits — bloopers, check swings, bunts, homers,” Astros manager Dusty Baker said. “They had it going in all departments.”Kiké Hernández had a two-run single and Betts followed with his team-high 15th homer. Betts' blast hit off the top of the wall in right, narrowly eluding the outstretched glove of George Springer, who punched the air with his right arm in frustration.Springer responded with a leadoff homer in the sixth. The Astros didn’t have more than one runner on until the seventh. Alex Wood allowed a single to Maldonado and hit Abraham Toro before getting the final two outs.Seeing so many pitchers affected the Astros' timing at the plate.“It’s hard to see what the tendencies are of the pitcher, what they’re doing, what they’re not, which pitch he’s throwing for a strike, which pitch he’s not, especially when you’re facing a really good bullpen,” Maldonado said.The Dodgers led 1-0 on AJ Pollock's 10th homer with two outs in the first.Zack Greinke (3-2) gave up five runs and eight hits — both season highs — in five innings of his second straight loss. He struck out three and walked none against his former team.“You start to wonder if you’re actually doing good and what are you doing wrong,” Greinke said. “Had some soft hits, so maybe a little unlucky, but you’ve got to take some of the blame somewhere.”Houston finished 2-9 on its 11-game road trip, and dropped to 23-24 overall and 7-18 on the road.TRAINER'S ROOMAstros: 1B Yuri Gurriel got the day off after hurting his hand while attempting to steal second on Saturday. 2B Aledmys Diaz also had the day off after tweaking his quad when he scored in the ninth on Saturday. Both Gurriel and Diaz are expected back on Tuesday or Wednesday.Dodgers: RHP Dustin May tossed a 20-pitch bullpen using his entire mix. He could start Wednesday in San Diego. He took a line drive off his left foot at Arizona. ... RHP Joe Kelly (right shoulder inflammation) will throw a bullpen on the off day Monday and could be activated later in the week. ... 3B Justin Turner (strained left hamstring) did some work on the field, running bases and taking grounders at third.SPRINGER HAS SPRUNGSpringer has hit safely in 11 of his last 12 games. During that span, he's batting .340 with two doubles, four homers and six RBIs.Honouring TURNERTurner was recognized on the field by Roberts as the Dodgers' nominee for the Roberto Clemente Award. It honours the major leaguer who best represents the game through character, community involvement and philanthropy and is decided through fan voting.UP NEXTAstros: RHP Jose Urquidy (0-1, 3.72 ERA) makes his third start Tuesday at Texas after missing most of the season following a bout with COVID-19.Dodgers: Begin a three-game series at San Diego on Monday in a showdown between the NL West's top teams.___More AP MLB: https://apnews.com/MLB and https://twitter.com/AP_SportsBeth Harris, The Associated Press
SCOREBOARDMon. Sept. 14Pittsburgh at N.Y. Giants, 7:10 p.m. Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger makes his return after missing most of last season with an elbow injury. Big Ben has success in Monday nighters, with at least two TD passes in three of his last four such games. The game also marks Joe Judge’s debut as the Giants' coach after he was hired following eight years as an assistant under Bill Belichick in New England.—Tennessee at Denver, 10:20 p.m. The Titans have won four of their last five season openers on the road. But they'll face a Broncos team that is 30-7-1 all-time in home openers. No team has a better Week 1 mark than Denver’s 39-20-1. The game marks the Titans debut of recently signed defensive end Jadeveon Clowney. Denver running back Melvin Gordon will also be playing his first game for the Broncos, but star LB Von Miller (ankle) is out.___STARSPassing— Aaron Rodgers, Packers, threw for 364 yards and four touchdowns to lead Green Bay to a 43-36 win at Minnesota.— Russell Wilson, Seahawks, had four touchdown passes and completed 31 of 35 passes for 322 yards in Seattle's 38-27 victory at Atlanta.— Lamar Jackson, Ravens, threw for 275 yards and three touchdowns, going 20 of 25 while also racking up a team-high 45 yards rushing in Baltimore’s 38-6 rout of Cleveland.— Josh Allen, Bills, finished 33 of 46 for 312 yards and three TDs in Buffalo's 27-17 win over the New York Jets, becoming the team's first Buffalo player to top 300 yards since Tyrod Taylor in December 2016.— Mitchell Trubisky, Bears, perfectly lofted a 27-yard go-ahead touchdown pass to Anthony Miller with 1:54 remaining to lead Chicago past Detroit 27-23. Trubisky threw three TD passes in the fourth quarter to help Chicago come back from a 17-point deficit.— Gardner Minshew, Jaguars, threw three touchdown passes and finished 19 of 20 for 173 yards in Jacksonville's 27-20 win over Indianapolis.___Rushing— Josh Jacobs, Raiders, ran for 93 yards and three touchdowns in Las Vegas' 34-30 victory at Carolina.— Christian McCaffrey, Panthers, rushed for 96 yards and two TDs while accounting for 134 yards from scrimmage in Carolina's 34-30 loss to Las Vegas.— Adrian Peterson, Lions, ran for 93 yards on 14 carries in his Detroit debut, a 27-23 loss to Chicago, just four days after signing with the team.— Cam Newton, Patriots, rushed for 15 times for 75 yards and two touchdowns while also throwing for 155 yards in his debut as New England's quarterback in a 21-11 victory over Miami.— Dalvin Cook, Vikings, rushed 12 times for 50 yards, two touchdowns and two 2-point conversions in Minnesota's 43-36 loss to Green Bay.___Receiving— Davante Adams, Packers, set a career high and tied a franchise record with 14 catches for 156 yards and two scores to help Green Bay defeat Minnesota 43-36.— DeAndre Hopkins, Cardinals, had a career-high 14 catches for 151 yards in his Arizona debut and set up Kenyan Drake’s 1-yard TD run with 5:03 to play in a 24-20 win over San Francisco.— Calvin Ridley, Julio Jones and Russell Gage, Falcons, each had nine catches in Atlanta's 38-27 loss to Seattle. Ridley had two touchdown receptions and 130 yards receiving, while Jones had 157 yards receiving and Gage finished with 114.— Mark Andrews, Ravens, caught two touchdown passes in Baltimore's 38-6 win over Cleveland.— Robby Anderson, Panthers, had six catches for 115 yards and a go-ahead 75-yard score in his Carolina debut, a 34-30 loss to Las Vegas.— Adam Thielen, Vikings, finished with six receptions for 110 yards and two TDs in Minnesota's 43-36 loss to Green Bay.___Special Teams— Ezekiel Turner, Cardinals, broke through and blocked a punt by Mitch Wishnowsky that Arizona recovered at the 10 and scored on the next play in a 24-20 win at San Francisco.— Margus Hunt and Bennie Fowler, Saints. Hunt blocked a 54-yard field goal attempt in the first half of New Orleans' 34-23 win over Tampa Bay. Fowler recovered a muffed kickoff at the Tampa Bay 18 in the fourth quarter to set up a 21-yard field goal.— Michael Badgley, Chargers, booted three field goals to help Los Angeles top Cincinnati 16-13.___Defence—Jaire Alexander, Packers had a sack, interception and a safety in a 43-36 win at Minnesota, becoming the fifth player to accomplish the feat in a single game since 2000.— Janoris Jenkins, Saints, returned an interception thrown by Tom Brady 36 yards for a touchdown in New Orleans' 34-23 victory over Tampa Bay.— Jamal Adams, Seahawks, had 12 tackles and a sack in his Seattle debut, a 38-27 win at Atlanta.— Ryan Kerrigan, Matthew Ioannidis and rookie Chase Young, Washington. Kerrigan had two sacks, while Ioannidis and Young each had 1 1/2 in a 27-17 victory over Philadelphia.— Marcus Maye, Jets, had two sacks, 10 tackles and a forced fumble in New York's 27-17 loss at Buffalo.— Denico Autry, Colts, had two sacks in Indianapolis' 27-20 loss at Jacksonville.___MILESTONESJacksonville's James Robinson made NFL history in his pro debut, running for 62 yards — a record for undrafted rookie running backs in season openers — in the Jaguars' 27-20 win over Indianapolis. He became the first undrafted rookie running back in 30 years to start in Week 1. Washington’s Ralph Nelson held the previous high for yards rushing by an undrafted rookie in Week 1, gaining 44 yards against New Orleans on Sept. 21, 1975. ... Green Bay's Davante Adams tied Don Hutson’s franchise mark from Nov. 22, 1942, by catching 14 passes in the Packers' 43-36 win at Minnesota. ... Washington's Ryan Kerrigan set a franchise record in a 27-17 win over Philadelphia with his 92nd career sack, passing Dexter Manley. ... Tampa Bay's Tom Brady (43 years old) and New Orleans' Drew Brees (41) faced off in the first game in NFL history in which both starting quarterbacks were 40 or older, with the Saints coming out on top 34-23. It also was the first matchup since at least 1950 to feature the top two career leaders in TD passes. ... Seattle's Russell Wilson has 30,056 yards passing and 4,022 yards rushing, joining Pro Football Hall of Famer Steve Young as the only players in NFL history with at least 30,000 yards passing and 4,000 yards rushing.___STREAKS & STATSAtlanta outgained Seattle 506 yards to 383, with Julio Jones, Calvin Ridley and Russell Gage all collecting more than 100 yards receiving. But the Falcons came up short all four times they tried to convert on fourth down in the 38-27 loss. ... Josh Allen became the first Bills QB since Tyrod Taylor on Dec. 24, 2016, to throw for 300 yards, going 33 of 46 for 312 yards with two touchdowns, plus another one rushing in a 27-17 win over the New York Jets. ... Green Bay's 43-36 win at Minnesota marked the Packers' highest points total against the Vikings since a 44-31 victory at the Metrodome on Oct. 27, 2013. It was also the most points Minnesota has allowed since coach Mike Zimmer was hired in 2014. ... Cam Newton ran 15 times for 75 yards in New England's 21-11 win over Miami, the most yards rushing by a Patriots quarterback since Steve Grogan had 81 in 1977.___BRADY THE BUCTom Brady was intercepted twice in his Tampa Bay debut, a 34-23 loss to New Orleans. The first of Brady’s interceptions led to a 6-yard touchdown run by Alvin Kamara. The second pick thrown by the new, 43-year-old Bucs QB — who left the New England Patriots in free agency after 20 years and six Super Bowl triumphs — was returned 36 yards for a touchdown by Janoris Jenkins. Brady was 15 of 28 for 157 yards and one TD through the first 54 minutes of the game. He padded his numbers in garbage time, finishing with 239 yards and two TDs, the second scoring strike going to Mike Evans with 2:41 left.—RUNNING CAMCam Newton looked just fine as Tom Brady’s replacement, rushing for two touchdowns and New England beat Miami 21-11 to open the season. Newton ran 15 times for 75 yards and threw for 155 yards, leading a Patriots offensive attack that did most of its damage via the rushing game in their first game since the departure of Brady to Tampa Bay as a free agent. Newton’s 75 yards were the most by a Patriots quarterback since Steve Grogan had 81 in 1977. “It was relatively picking up right where I remember the game to be,” said Newton, the former Carolina Panthers QB who played for the first time in more than a year. Newton's 60 career TD runs are the most by a quarterback in NFL history. He also has seven career games with at least two rushing scores, tied with Otto Graham, Steve Young, Jack Kemp and Steve McNar for the most by a QB.—NEW GUYSThere were five coaching changes for this season, and the new guys in charge went 1-3 in the games earlier Sunday. Washington's Ron Rivera was the lone coach to win in his debut with his new team, beating Philadelphia 27-17. Carolina's Matt Rhule saw his team fall to Las Vegas 34-20, while Cleveland's Kevin Stefanski was defeated 38-6 at Baltimore. Mike McCarthy was coaching Dallas for the first time against the Los Angeles Rams on Sunday night and lost 20-17. Joe Judge and the New York Giants are hosting Pittsburgh on Monday night.—STRONG IN DEFEATA bright spot for Atlanta in a 38-27 loss to Seattle was Matt Ryan going past John Elway for ninth on the NFL career passing yardage list. Matty Ice was 37 of 54 for 450 yards and two touchdowns, the second-highest yardage total of his career. Ryan has 51,636 career passing yards, while Elway had 51,475.—COMEBACK KIDSPeyton Barber ran for two touchdowns and Dwayne Haskins rallied Washington from a 17-point deficit to beat the Philadelphia Eagles 27-17 Sunday in coach Ron Rivera’s debut. After falling behind 17-0, Washington relied on a punishing defence and opportunistic offence in its first game since owner Dan Snyder finally agreed to change the team’s name and former employees alleged sexual harassment in the organization. Rivera lived up to his “Riverboat Ron” nickname earned in nine seasons with Carolina. In his first game after finding out he has a form of skin cancer, Rivera went for it on fourth-and-1 from the Eagles 5 with the score tied midway through the fourth quarter. Barber ran for the first down and then scored from the 3 to give Washington a 24-17 lead.—BURROW'S DEBUTHeisman Trophy winner Joe Burrow ran 23 yards untouched for a touchdown — the best moment of his NFL debut — but the Los Angeles Chargers roughed him up and rallied for a 16-13 victory over Cincinnati. A line anchored by Joey Bosa and Melvin Ingram III held the quarterback from national champion LSU to 23 of 36 passing for 192 yards with three sacks and a costly interception. Twice, Burrow overthrew open receivers for what would have been touchdowns.—BEARS ROAR BACKMitchell Trubisky perfectly lofted a 27-yard go-ahead touchdown pass to Anthony Miller with 1:54 remaining and the Chicago Bears held on to beat the Detroit Lions 27-23. Trubisky threw three touchdown passes in the fourth quarter to help Chicago come back from a 17-point deficit. It looked familiar to Lions fans: Detroit opened last season by blowing an 18-point lead at Arizona and settling for a tie.—MINSHEW MANIAGardner Minshew threw three touchdown passes, including a 22-yarder to Keelan Cole in the fourth quarter, and Jacksonville opened the season by stunning Indianapolis 27-20 and spoiling Philip Rivers’ debut with the Colts. Minshew gave the faithful plenty to celebrate. The second-year pro completed 19 of 20 passes for 173 yards and no turnovers. He connected with DJ Chark, rookie Laviska Shenault and Cole for scores — and looked sharp all day. Minshew’s only incompletion was a catchable ball early. He joined Drew Brees (2019), Philip Rivers (2018) and Marcus Mariota (2018) as the only QBs in history with a completion percentage of 95 of higher with a minimum of 20 attempts in a game.—QUESTIONABLE CALLWith Carolina trailing Las Vegas 34-30, new Panthers offensive co-ordinator Joe Brady called a handoff to fullback Alex Armah — instead of All-Pro Christian McCaffrey — on fourth-and-inches at midfield, He was stopped at the line with 1:11 left. McCaffrey racked up 134 yards from scrimmage and scored two touchdowns. Coach Matt Rhule, making his debut, took blame for the call. “It’s a play we were all on board with,” McCaffrey said, referring to Armah picking up a first down on a similar play earlier.___SIDELINEDIndianapolis running back Marlon Mack left in the first half of the Colts' 27-20 loss at Jacksonville with a right Achilles tendon injury. He caught a 3-yard pass at the Colts 48 midway through the second quarter and immediately went down before grabbing at his foot. The injury was initially described as an ankle injury before coach Frank Reich said after the game that it was Mack’s Achilles tendon. ... The New York Jets finished their 27-17 loss at Buffalo without running back Le’Veon Bell, who was ruled out in the second half because of a hamstring injury. Linebacker Blake Cashman has a groin injury. ... Miami lost top receiver DeVante Parker to a hamstring injury in a 21-11 loss to New England. ... Las Vegas lost both right tackles to injuries with Trent Brown leaving with a calf injury in the first quarter of a 34-30 win at Carolina and Sam Young in the third quarter with a groin issue.___SPEAKING“It was one of the strangest experiences I’ve had in the NFL, being in a stadium like this to have memories of some really rocking times.” — Green Bay quarterback Aaron Rodgers after leading the Packers to a 43-34 win over Minnesota at an empty U.S. Bank Stadium that was without fans because of the coronavirus pandemic.—“That was a little bit like Walter Payton used to play. It was hot as hell. He got beat up early. He insisted on coming back and he insisted on getting the ball as a runner and receiver. He is special. He deserves some national attention — and I hope you give it to him.” — Las Vegas coach Jon Gruden on running back Josh Jacobs, who ran for 93 yards and three touchdowns in the Raiders' 34-30 win at Carolina.—“The guy was incredible last year. To me, he’s obviously the best player in the world, and his arm reflects that.” — Baltimore tight end Mark Andrews on quarterback Lamar Jackson, who threw for 275 yards and three touchdowns, including two to Andrews, in the Ravens' 38-6 rout of Cleveland.___More AP NFL: https://apnews.com/NFL and https://twitter.com/AP_NFLThe Associated Press
NEW ORLEANS — Tom Brady threw two interceptions in his Tampa Bay debut, Alvin Kamara scored touchdowns running and receiving, and the New Orleans Saints beat the Buccaneers 34-23 on Sunday.The first of Brady’s interceptions led to Kamara’s 6-yard touchdown run. The second pick thrown by the new, 43-year-old Bucs QB — who left the New England Patriots in free agency after 20 years and six Super Bowl triumphs — was returned 36 yards for a touchdown by Janoris Jenkins.Neither quarterback was statistically exceptional in this first-ever NFL game featuring two quarterbacks in their 40s. The 41-year-old Drew Brees passed for 160 yards and two TDs, but he also avoided critical mistakes. He did not turn over the ball and took only one sack. His first TD pass was a dump-off to Kamara from 12 yards. In the fourth quarter he hit free-agent signing Emmanuel Sanders for a 5-yard score.Few witnessed this historically significant quarterback matchup in person, with government leaders and the Saints having agreed that no fans should attend the opener amid the coronavirus pandemic. That turned the normally deafening 73,000-seat Superdome into more of an echo chamber. When Wil Lutz’s field goal put New Orleans up 17-7, the squeaking of pulleys could be heard across the stadium as the net behind the goal post was lowered.RAMS 20, COWBOYS 17INGLEWOOD, Calif. (AP) — Malcolm Brown rushed for a career-high 79 yards and two touchdowns, Jared Goff passed for 275 yards and Los Angeles opened SoFi Stadium with a victory over Dallas.Robert Woods had six catches for 105 yards to help the Rams improve to 4-0 in season openers under coach Sean McVay and spoiled the debut of Mike McCarthy, Dallas’ first new head coach in a decade.Ezekiel Elliott rushed for 96 yards and a touchdown and caught another scoring pass, but the Cowboys began a season of high expectations by losing three starters to injury in the first half and then failing to mount a late comeback in a scoreless fourth quarter for both teams.Dak Prescott passed for 266 yards and a touchdown, but Dallas managed three points on its six drives in the second half. Michael Gallup made a long catch that would have put Dallas in field goal range with 21 seconds left, but was called for offensive pass interference for contact with Jalen Ramsey.CARDINALS 24. 49ERS 20SANTA CLARA, Calif. (AP) — DeAndre Hopkins had a career-high 14 catches for 151 yards in his Arizona debut and set up Kenyan Drake’s 1-yard TD run with 5:03 to play.Kyler Murray threw for 230 yards and a touchdown and ran for 91 yards and another score to help the Cardinals overcome a pair of fourth-quarter deficits to beat the defending NFC champion 49ers in a smoky opener at an empty stadium.Jerick McKinnon, in his first game in more than two years, caught a 5-yard TD pass from Jimmy Garoppolo to give San Francisco a 20-17 lead with 8:38 to play before Murray led a late comeback. His 33-yard pass to Hopkins got the ball down to the 1 and Drake ran it in on the next play to give Arizona the lead.Garoppolo led the 49ers down to the 16 before throwing an incomplete pass to Trent Taylor on fourth-and-5 that ended the comeback attemptCHARGERS 16, BENGALS 13CINCINNATI (AP) — Heisman Trophy winner Joe Burrow ran 23 yards untouched for a touchdown — the best moment of his NFL debut — but the Chargers roughed him up and rallied.Playing in empty Paul Brown Stadium, Burrow got his first snaps in the NFL and learned the hard way what it’s like to face a tough front line.The Bengals also had an in-character finish. A.J. Green was called for offensive interference in the end zone in the closing seconds, and Randy Bullock missed a 31-yard field goal try with 2 seconds left and pulled up lame.A line anchored by Joey Bosa and Melvin Ingram III held the quarterback from national champion LSU to 23 of 36 passing for 192 yards with three sacks and a costly interception. Twice, Burrow overthrew open receivers for what would have been touchdowns.WASHINGTON 27, EAGLES 17LANDOVER, Md. (AP) — Peyton Barber ran for two touchdowns and Dwayne Haskins rallied Washington from a 17-point deficit.After falling behind 17-0 following a pair of touchdown passes by Carson Wentz, Washington relied on a punishing defence and opportunistic offence in its first game since owner Dan Snyder finally agreed to change the team’s name and former employees alleged sexual harassment in the organization.Rivera lived up to his “Riverboat Ron” nickname earned in nine seasons with Carolina. In his first game after finding out he has a form of skin cancer, Rivera went for it on fourth-and-1 from the Eagles 5 with the score tied midway through the fourth quarter. Barber ran for the first down and then scored from the 3 to give Washington a 24-17 lead.Wentz was sacked eight times and threw two costly interceptions behind an injury-depleted offence line featuring two guys — right tackle Jack Driscoll and right guard Nate Herbig — starting their first career games.RAVENS 38, BROWNS 6BALTIMORE (AP) — Looking every bit like the reigning NFL MVP, Lamar Jackson threw for 275 yards and three touchdowns, ruining Kevin Stefanski’s debut as Cleveland’s head coach in a game played without fans in attendance.Although the COVID-19 pandemic kept the seats empty and the play was sloppy following a preseason without any games, two constants prevailed: Jackson was the focal point of a high-powered offence and the Browns lost another opener.Facing a Cleveland secondary depleted by injuries, Jackson completed 20 of 25 passes and racked up a team-high 45 yards on the ground. A year ago, the multi-faceted star set an NFL single-season record for yards rushing by a quarterback and threw 36 TD passes.The Browns were incapable of stopping him. As a result, Cleveland still hasn’t opened with a victory since 2004.PATRIOTS 21, DOLPHINS 11FOXBOROUGH, Mass. (AP) — Cam Newton looked just fine as Tom Brady’s replacement, rushing for two touchdowns.Newton rushed for 15 times for 75 yards and threw for 155 yards, leading a Patriots offensive attack that did most of its damage on the ground in their first game since the departure of Brady to Tampa Bay as a free agent. Sony Michel added a touchdown for New England, which had 217 of its 357 yards on the ground. Newton was 15 of 19 passing.Miami struggled for most of the game offensively and lost top receiver DeVante Parker, who left in the third quarter with a hamstring injury. Ryan Fitzpatrick was 20 of 30 for 191 yards and three interceptions. Miami was held to 269 total yards.PACKERS 43, VIKINGS 36MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — Aaron Rodgers took full advantage of the young cornerbacks and the empty stadium in Minnesota, beginning his 13th season as Green Bay’s starting quarterback by passing for 364 yards and four touchdowns.Davante Adams was predictably the biggest beneficiary with a career-high, franchise-record-tying 14 catches for 156 yards and two scores. Marquez Valdes-Scantling and Allen Lazard each reached the end zone, too, as Green Bay had its way with a Minnesota defence renovated this year out of salary-cap necessity as hefty new contracts were given to quarterback Kirk Cousins and running back Dalvin Cook.Aaron Jones rushed for 66 yards and a touchdown for the Packers, who posted their highest score against the Vikings since a 44-31 victory at the Metrodome on Oct. 27, 2013.Cook rushed 12 times for 50 yards, two touchdowns and two 2-point conversions. Adam Thielen caught six passes for 110 yards, two scores and another 2-pointer, but Cousins underthrew him in the final minute of the first half. Jaire Alexander, who also had a safety on an untouched cornerback blitz in the second quarter, made the bobbling interception.Then Rodgers hit Valdes-Scantling on a fade route up the right sideline with rookie Cameron Dantzler in position but too late to turn for the ball, a 45-yard touchdown that gave Green Bay a 22-7 lead with 11 seconds left in the first half.SEAHAWKS 38, FALCONS 25ATLANTA (AP) — Russell Wilson was cooking right from the start, throwing four touchdown passes. With the Falcons not allowing fans for at least their first two homes games because of the coronavirus pandemic, the Seahawks took advantage of what was essentially a neutral site to pull away in the second half.Wilson completed 31 of 35 passes for 322 yards, throwing a pair of TD passes in the first quarter as Seattle built a 14-12 halftime lead, adding two more in the third quarter to put the Falcons away.The biggest one came after the Falcons made what looked to be a crucial stop, leaving the Seahawks with fourth-and-5 at the Atlanta 38. The offence stayed on the field, but instead of going for the first down with a short throw, Wilson lofted one to DK Metcalf, who was streaking toward the end zone.Metcalf beat cornerback Isaiah Oliver and hauled in the perfectly thrown ball without breaking stride to push Seattle to a 21-12 lead.On the ensuing possession, Atlanta attempted a fake punt on fourth-and-2 from its 33. Blocking back Sharrod Neasman took a direct snap and had enough for the first down on a run up the middle, only to fumble the ball. It was recovered by Seattle’s Freddie Swain at the 36. Five plays later, Wilson zipped his fourth TD pass of the game.BEARS 27, LIONS 23DETROIT (AP) — Mitchell Trubisky perfectly lofted a 27-yard go-ahead touchdown pass to Anthony Miller with 1:54 remaining.Detroit drove to the Chicago 16 with a chance to win, and rookie running back D’Andre Swift dropped a pass in the end zone. Matthew Stafford threw another incomplete pass as time expired to complete the collapse.Trubisky threw three touchdown passes in the fourth quarter to help Chicago come back from a 17-point deficit. It looked familiar to Lions fans: Detroit opened last season by blowing an 18-point lead at Arizona and settling for a tie. That began a trend that saw the team fail to stay ahead during a season that ended with just wins.Trubisky, who held off Nick Foles to keep his job, shook off a shaky start to complete 20 of 36 attempts for 242 yards with three touchdowns, including short passes for scores to Jimmy Graham and Javon Wims.Stafford was 24 of 42 for 297 yards with a TD pass to T.J. Hockenson in the third quarter — and an interception that gave Chicago a great chance to take its only lead of the game. Adrian Peterson ran for 93 yards on 14 carries in his Detroit debut, just four days after signing with the team.JAGUARS 27, COLTS 20JACKSONVILLE, Fla. (AP) — Gardner Minshew threw three touchdown passes, including a 22-yarder to Keelan Cole in the fourth quarter, and Jacksonville stunned Indianapolis and Philip Rivers.The Jaguars entered Week 1 as the NFL’s biggest home underdogs, with talk of tanking being the most prevalent preseason topic surrounding the revamped team. The tempered expectations may have contributed to the team only being able to distribute about 14,000 tickets for the league’s lone game played with fans in the stands Sunday.Minshew gave the sparse crowd plenty to celebrate. The second-year pro completed 19 of 20 passes for 173 yards and no turnovers. He connected with DJ Chark, rookie Laviska Shenault and Cole for scores — and looked sharp all day.Undrafted rookie running back James Robinson accounted for 90 yards, including 62 on the ground.The Colts have themselves to blame for the loss. Coach Frank Reich went for it on fourth down from the 3-yard line early and failed to get points. Rookie kicker Rodrigo Blankenship hit the left upright from 30 yards out, another missed opportunity.And Rivers looked solid at times, but also had some questionable throws with his new team.RAIDERS 34, PANTHERS 30CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) — Josh Jacobs ran for 93 yards and three touchdowns, Derek Carr threw for 239 yards and a score to spoil Matt Rhule’s coaching debut.Jacobs’ 6-yard run around the right end with 4:14 left put the Raiders ahead for good after they’d surrendered a 12-point fourth quarter lead.Carolina had a chance to take the lead, but the Panthers handed off to fullback Alex Armah — instead of All-Pro Christian McCaffrey — on fourth-and-inches at midfield, He was stopped at the line, turning the ball over on downs with 1:11 left. McCaffrey racked up 134 yards from scrimmage and scored two touchdowns for Carolina.Teddy Bridgewater, who replaced Cam Newton as the starting QB, finished 22 of 34 for 270 yards and one touchdown in his Carolina debut. Robby Anderson, a free agent pickup from the Jets, had six catches for 115 yards and a go-ahead score.BILLS 27, JETS 17ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. (AP) — Josh Allen led three consecutive first-half touchdown drives, and the Bills overcame their own sloppiness and injuries to two starting linebackers.John Brown had six catches for 70 yards and a touchdown, and Stefon Diggs finished with eight catches for a team-leading 86 yards in his Bills debut after being acquired in a trade with Minnesota in March.Allen finished 33 of 46 for 312 yards in becoming Buffalo’s first player to top 300 yards since Tyrod Taylor had 329 in a 34-31 overtime loss to Miami on Dec. 24, 2016.Buffalo’s defence was a force despite losing Matt Milano to a hamstring injury in the second quarter. Middle linebacker Tremaine Edmunds did not return after hurting his shoulder while trying to tackle Jets receiver Jamison Crowder, who scored on a 69-yard touchdown catch and run.The Jets finished the game without starting running back Le’Veon Bell, ruled out in the second half due to a hamstring injury.___More AP NFL: https://apnews.com/NFL and https://twitter.com/AP_NFLThe Associated Press
NEW ORLEANS — Tom Brady's 20 previous NFL seasons, six of which ended with him holding the Lombardi Trophy, have taught him not to read too much into a single setback.Not that he wanted to gloss over his mistakes — namely, a pair of interceptions — after a Tampa Bay debut that began with a triumphant spike but petered out into a double-digit loss on Sunday.“I’ve lost plenty of games in my career,” Brady said following the 34-23 setback, which included an anticlimactic Tampa Bay TD in the final minutes. "I know I don’t like it. But it happens.“We’ve got to learn from it," Brady continued. "When you play good teams, you can’t make mistakes. Obviously, I made too many mistakes today. ... I’m going to focus on what I have to do, and I have to do a lot better job.”Brady's arrival created big expectations in Tampa Bay, particularly given his stockpile of weapons on offence — including elite receivers Mike Evans and Chris Godwin and newcomers Rob Gronkowski and Leonard Fournette.But even a QB as accomplished as Brady, it seems, can struggle to learn a new offence and build chemistry with his receivers. Bucs coach Bruce Arians said Brady's first interception resulted from a miscommunication with Evans.“He thought Mike was going down the middle — it was a different coverage — Mike read it right,” Arians said. “He should have been across his face, but Tom overthrew it.”Saints safety Marcus Williams came down with the ball near midfield and returned it inside the Tampa Bay 40. A few plays later, Alvin Kamara was carrying the ball into the end zone for New Orleans.Early in the second half, Brady's pass intended for receiver Justin Watson along the right sideline was undercut by cornerback Janoris Jenkins, who met no resistance as he sprinted 36 yards for a touchdown.“We hung our defence out to dry on some short fields, not moving the ball, not doing very well on third down at certain times,” Brady said. “The turnovers really hurt us. We’ve got to clean that up for next week.”Brady finished 23 of 36 passing for 239 yards and two touchdowns, but eight of his completions and one of his touchdowns came in the final six minutes, when the game was virtually out of reach.“It’s Week 1 of the NFL season. A lot of things are going to be corrected. Every team’s going to wish they did things better," Brady said. "We’re going to feel that way as we move through the season. It’s going to be about our mental toughness, our urgency, how hard we work in practice to get things done. Not turning the ball over is a good place to start.”There were some highlights, starting with the Bucs' opening possession.Brady lofted a 26-yard completion to Godwin along the right sideline, drew a pass interference penalty with a 22-yard attempt to Evans and capped the drive with a 2-yard keeper, after which he emphatically spiked the ball off the turf.Less than a minute after his second interception had put the Saints up 24-7, Brady threw his first TD pass for Tampa Bay — and the 542nd of his career — to tight end O.J. Howard in the back of the end zone.The Bucs lamented their mistakes but took solace in how much season is left to fix what failed and build on what went right.“It’s good that this happened early,” Howard said. "We get to eat a piece of humble pie and get back at it next week. That’s the good thing about football.”___More AP NFL: https://apnews.com/NFL and https://twitter.com/AP_NFLBrett Martel, The Associated Press
KANSAS CITY, Kan. — Johnny Russell scored in the 80th minute and Sporting Kansas City beat Minnesota United 1-0 on Sunday night to take the Western Conference lead.Minnesota (5-4-2) listed seven players not medically cleared for the match. Sporting Kansas City (6-3-2) had six on the list, including Erik Hurtado.An unidentified player for Sporting Kansas City tested positive for COVID-19. The team said Saturday the player self-isolated upon the initial positive result and will remain in isolation until cleared by the club’s medical staff. No other players and coaches were confirmed positive for the coronavirus.Graham Zusi lofted the ball from distance to Russell, who outran the defence and shot to the far post for his third goal of the season. Kansas City snapped a four-game winless streak.Dayne St. Clair had four of his five saves in the first half for Minnesota. The Loons entered having scored seven goals in consecutive home wins.The Associated Press