How did some anticipated Week 11 matchups play out in the NFL? Here's a brief look at the early games:
Minnesota 30, Arizona 24
The Vikings (6-4) ended their four-game skid by playing the football that had gotten them to 5-0. Despite gaining just 217 yards of offense, a 100-yard interception return by Xavier Rhodes and a 104-yard kickoff return by Cordarrelle Patterson ensured they had enough point to top the Cardinals (4-5-1). Carson Palmer (20-for-38, 198 yards, 2 TDs, 2 INTs) has seven turnovers in the last three games.
Buffalo 16, Cincinnati 12
LeSean McCoy opened the scoring with a seven-yard touchdown run, but had to leave the game with a thumb injury. The Bills (5-5) didn’t blink, finishing with 183 team rushing yards to stop their three game skid. The news wasn’t as good for the Bengals, who lost A.J. Green to a hamstring injury and dropped to 3-6-1 on the season. Green left in the first quarter, leading to his first game without a reception since the 2014 season.
Pittsburgh 24, Cleveland 9
The Steelers (5-5) ended a four game losing streak on the road in Cleveland. Their much-maligned defense sacked the Browns (0-11) eight times and forced two turnovers while allowing just 209 total yards. Le’Veon Bell had 146 rushing yards and another 55 receiving, accounting for almost two-thirds of Pittsburgh’s offense.
Dallas 27, Baltimore 17
The Cowboys (9-1) overcame a slow start to rack up 417 yards on the NFL’s leading defense — the Ravens (5-5) were allowing 281.6 per game entering Sunday’s contest. Two touchdowns to begin the second half turned a 10-10 tie into a 24-10 Cowboys lead that held up. Dak Prescott (27-for-36, 301 yards, 3 TDs) now has two straight 300-yard games after reaching the mark for the first time last week against Pittsburgh.
Detroit 26, Jacksonville 19
After recovering a fumble earlier, Tavon Wilson intercepted Blake Bortles (22-for-35, 202 yards, 2 TDs, 2 INTs) at midfield on the game’s final play to seal the victory for the Lions (6-4). With the win, Detroit stays in first place in the NFC North. Theo Riddick had to get his yards through the air (8 catches, 70 yards) as the Lions ground game was limited to just 13 yards on 21 carries. The loss was the fifth straight for the Jaguars, who fall to 2-8 on the season.
Indianapolis 24, Tennessee 17
While it was the Titans (5-6) who built a 21-0 lead early last week against Green Bay, this week they fell behind by the same margin against the Colts (5-5) and weren’t able to complete the comeback. It’s the eleventh straight time the Colts have beaten their division rivals. Andrew Luck (15-for-28, 262 yards, 2 TDs, INT) has never lost to Tennessee. Adam Vinatieri missed a 42-yard field goal, ending his NFL record streak of 44 straight successful attempts. He started a new streak however, hitting a 49-yarder to close out the day’s scoring.
Tampa Bay 19, Kansas City 17
While the rest of the NFL was experiencing kicking troubles due to the weather — nine extra points were missed or blocked in the early games - Roberto Aguayo had no such issues in Kansas City, nailing all four of his field goal attempts and an extra point for the Buccaneers (5-5) third straight win. The loss ends the Chiefs (7-3) own five-game win streak as for once they couldn’t overcome their lack of offense (343 yards).
New York Giants 22, Chicago 16
The Giants (7-3) won their fifth straight while trying to keep pace with the Cowboys atop the NFC East. New York scored the final 16 points after falling behind 16-9. Landon Collins recorded his fifth interception in the past four games, and Rashad Jennings established himself as the back in New York’s backfield, finishing with 21 carries for 85 yards. The teams combined to go two-for-five on extra points. Jeremy Langford scored for the Bears (2-8), his first touchdown since Week 2.