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Tucker’s 61-yard FG boots Ravens by Lions

Justin Tucker hits 61-yard FG to lift Ravens past Lions

Tucker Kicks Ravens Past Lions
VIDEO PLAYLIST video

DETROIT — Justin Tucker‘s powerful leg kicked the Super Bowl champions into playoff gear.

Tucker made six field goals, including a franchise-record 61-yarder with 38 seconds left that lifted the Baltimore Ravens to an 18-16 win over the Detroit Lions in a Monday night matchup with major postseason implications.

Ravens coach John Harbaugh chose to let Tucker try the longest kick of his career — by 5 yards — instead of going for it on fourth-and-8 from the Detroit 43.

Kicking It Up A Notch


Baltimore’s Justin Tucker became the fourth kicker in NFL history to hit a go- ahead field goal of 60 or more yards in the final minute of the 4th quarter.

Distance
Tom Dempsey
1970 Saints
63
Matt Bryant
2006 Buccaneers
62
Justin Tucker
2013 Ravens
61
Rob Bironas
2006 Titans
60

  — Elias Sports Bureau

“If they send me out there, they have reason to,” Tucker said. “It’s because they think I can make the kick.”

Rookie safety Matt Elam sealed the victory with an interception — Matthew Stafford‘s third of the night — after raising eyebrows during the week by calling 28-year-old Calvin Johnson “pretty old” and saying the plan was to make the star receiver uncomfortable by getting physical with him.

Stafford threw a 14-yard touchdown pass to Joseph Fauria with 2:21 left, putting Detroit up 16-15. But the Lions were unable to make a 2-point conversion and couldn’t prevent Baltimore (8-6) from setting up its sensational kicker for his 33rd successful field goal in a row.

Tucker’s kick went just inside the right upright and barely had enough distance — eight days after Denver’s Matt Prater broke the NFL record with a 64-yard field goal.

“I definitely felt like I got a lot of leg into it, but it jumped up so high I thought I might have gotten under it,” Tucker said.

Tucker, who hasn’t missed a field goal attempt since he was 0 for 2 in Week 2 at Cleveland, has the NFL’s longest streak since Matt Stover made 36 in a row for the Ravens from 2005-06, according to STATS.

“What can you say about Justin Tucker?” Harbaugh said. “When we got the ball there, I think at the 45-yard line, I said, ‘Hey, are we kicking this?’ … He said, ‘I got it.’ ”

SportsNation: Ravens to win AFC North?

SportsNationThe Ravens’ FG-fueled win put the AFC North title within reach. Will they get it? Who takes the NFC North? Vote! »

He sure did.

Moments after his clutch kick, Tucker mentioned in a television interview that his big night also benefited his fantasy football team.

More importantly, his real club won its fourth straight game and maintained control of an AFC wild card as the Ravens seek their sixth consecutive postseason berth and a chance to defend their Super Bowl title.

Detroit (7-7) has hurt its playoff chances by losing four of five, falling out of sole possession of first place in the NFC North to third behind the division-leading Chicago Bears and Green Bay.

“This is a setback, no question,” Lions coach Jim Schwartz said. “We had control and now we need help. We have to get two wins and let the rest shake out.”

Stafford’s three interceptions followed a troubling trend for the franchise.

He has 12 turnovers, including two fumbles, in his last five games. Not coincidentally, the Lions have been able to overcome those miscues well enough to win only one game during the slump.

Joe Flacco, meanwhile, didn’t turn the ball over and made enough subtle moves in and around the pocket to get sacked only once. He has been sacked a career-high 42 times this season, but he stayed upright enough to move the ball into position for Tucker’s big kick.

Flacco was 20 of 38 for 222 yards, including a 27-yard pass to Jacoby Jones to convert a third-and-15 from the Baltimore 28 on the game-winning drive. Jones had six receptions for 80 yards, and returned Detroit’s last kick to the Baltimore 33.

Playoff scenarios

NFLWho’s in? Who needs help? We break down all the playoff possibilities. Playoff scenarios

Stafford was 18 of 34 for 235 yards with a TD and three interceptions — increasing his five-game total to 10 — for a season-low 48 quarterback rating.

“This was certainly not my best game,” he acknowledged.

Johnson had six receptions for 98 yards and dropped two possibly pivotal passes thrown his way in the first half.

“We just put every guy on him to try to stop him,” Elam said. “It was no disrespect meant to Calvin. He’s the best in the league, so why would I challenge him? Words just got stirred up.”

The Lions started strong, with Reggie Bush running for a 14-yard touchdown on the opening drive.

Detroit, though, got in its own way as it often has this year.

Johnson dropped a pass that would’ve converted a third-and-15 deep in Ravens territory.

On the ensuing drive, Tucker kicked his first of three field goals in the first half — two of which were set up by penalties against Detroit.

Tucker’s next field goal was set up by a pass-interference call against safety Don Carey.

Johnson couldn’t catch another pass in Baltimore territory thrown at him late in the first half.

The Ravens took advantage of that mistake and one by Detroit’s defense on the next drive.

Flacco threw an up-for-grabs pass on third-and-8 from the Lions 44 after avoiding a sack, and the incomplete pass was negated by Louis Delmas‘ helmet-to-helmet hit on Marlon Brown with 16 seconds left in the first half. That flag put the Ravens 15 yards closer to Tucker’s field goal that gave Baltimore a 9-7 lead at halftime.

Detroit drove to the Ravens 31 on its first possession of the second half, but Stafford threw a pass behind Bush that was picked off by defensive end DeAngelo Tyson.

Baltimore went ahead 12-7 on the next drive on Tucker’s 49-yard field goal midway through the third quarter.

The Lions scored on the ensuing drive — on David Akers‘ 40-yard kick — for the first time since the opening minutes of the game. The field goal came after Stafford’s pass into the end zone fell incomplete. A replay showed Detroit receiver Kris Durham had his arm held on the play by Lardarius Webb, but there was no penalty flag for pass interference.

Tucker’s 53-yard field goal — matching his previous season high — put the Ravens ahead 15-10 with 8:06 left.

Detroit responded with its best drive since its first one. The Lions might have caught a break from the officials when Brandon Pettigrew‘s catch was upheld after review.

Game notes

Tucker’s 56-yard field goal last year — as an undrafted rookie — matched the previous franchise record set by Wade Richey in 2003. … Bush had 101 yards of total offense.

Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press

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Are injuries wrecking your season?

Here are a few updates on the injury front. If you’ve play fantasy football long you know that injuries can change things, fast. Here’s hoping your season is going well and injuries are not holding you back.

Fantasy football injury news, Week 14 – SBNation.com

http://www.sbnation.com Tue, 03 Dec 2013 17:00:02 GMT

There are a lot of injuries out there. We break down the relevant ones to remember for setting your lineup and making some pickups along the way.

Read more …

Steve Smith injury update: WR probable, will play for fantasy owners

http://www.sbnation.com Sun, 01 Dec 2013 12:38:02 GMT

The Panthers wide receiver is listed as probable and will play in Week 13. We break down the fantasy implications.

Read more …

Jay Cutler has a shot to play for Bears, fantasy owners in Week 14

http://www.sbnation.com Mon, 02 Dec 2013 20:01:53 GMT

The Bears might be getting Jay Cutler back in Week 14.

 

Read more …

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2013 Fantasy Football: NFL Week 12 Deep Sleepers

2013 Fantasy Football: NFL Week 12 Deep Sleepers

Nov 15, 2013


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We took a look at some Sleeper Options. Here’s a look at some deep sleepers for leagues with minimal options on the waiver wire.
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Mike Glennon, QB, Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Josh McCown, QB, Chicago Bears
Alex Smith, QB, Kansas City Chiefs
Brian Leonard, RB, Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Rashard Mendenhall, RB, Arizona Cardinals
Chris Ogbonnaya, RB, Cleveland Browns
Kris Durham, WR, Detroit Lions
Greg Little, WR, Cleveland Browns
Tiquan Underwood, WR, Tampa Bay Buccaneers
John Carlson , TE, Minnesota Vikings
Robert Housler, TE, Arizona Cardinals
Zach Miller, TE, Seattle Seahawks
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Fantasy Options for the Thursday Night Football Indianapolis Colts-Tennessee Titans Game

Fantasy Options for the Thursday Night Football Indianapolis Colts-Tennessee Titans Game

Nov 14, 2013


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We are hours away from the start of the 11th week of the 2013 NFL season as the Indianapolis Colts take on the Tennessee Titans. It’s also the kickoff for the 11th week of the fantasy football season. Here’s a look of players that should be in your lineups tonight.
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Five Stars
None
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Four Stars
T.Y. Hilton
Chris Johnson
Andrew Luck
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Three Stars
Shonn Greene
Indianapolis Colts Defense
Kendall Wright
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Two Stars
Donald Brown
Coby Fleener
Darrius Heyward-Bey
Tennessee Titans Defense
Delanie Walker
Nate Washington
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One Star
Ryan Fitzpatrick
Justin Hunter
Trent Richardson
Griff Whalen
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2013 Fantasy Football Start/Sit NFL Week 11

2013 Fantasy Football Start/Sit NFL Week 11

Nov 14, 2013


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Here’s a look at Lester’s Legends sit and start advice as you set your lineups for the 11th week of the 2013 NFL season.
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Quarterbacks
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Start:
Nick Foles
Robert Griffin III
Andrew Luck
Philip Rivers
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Sit:
Andy Dalton
Matt Ryan
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Running Backs
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Start:
Andre Ellington
Chris Ivory
Maurice Jones-Drew
Ray Rice
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Sit:
Lamar Miller
Steven Jackson
Trent Richardson
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Wide Receivers
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Start:
Jarrett Boykin
Marvin Jones
Rueben Randle
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Sit:
Brian Hartline
Greg Jennings
Nate Washington
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Tight Ends
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Start:
Martellus Bennett
Coby Fleener
Greg Olsen
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Sit:
Charles Clay
Heath Miller
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Defenses
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Start:
Arizona Cardinals
Cincinnati Bengals
New York Jets
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Sit:
Denver Broncos
San Francisco 49ers
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2013 Fantasy Football: NFL Week 11 Sleepers

2013 Fantasy Football: NFL Week 11 Sleepers

Nov 14, 2013

Andre Ellington
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Sometimes you need a fantasy gem to be successful. Here is a list of Lester’s Legends under-the-radar players that could possibly pull out a win for you this week.
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Case Keenum, QB, Houston Texans
Case Keenum is averaging 274 yards and 2.3 touchdowns in three starts. He has added 16.3 yards on the ground. He has thrown three touchdowns in each of the past two games and has yet to throw a pick on the year. He’s playing against the Oakland Raiders at home. The Raiders have allowed 246.6 yard and two touchdowns per game through the air.
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Andre Ellington, RB, Arizona Cardinals
Andre Ellington isn’t the starter for the Arizona Cardinals even though he’s by far more explosive than Rashard Mendenhall. Ellington is 5’9″ and 199 pounds. They want to limit him to around 12-15 touches per game. That should be enough against the Jacksonville Jaguars. The Jags have allowed 153 yards and 1.6 touchdowns per game. Despite only getting 8.7 touches per game on the year, Ellington has averaged 67.1 total yards.
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Doug Baldwin, WR, Seattle Seahawks
Percy Harvin could return to face the Minnesota Vikings. Golden Tate leads the team in receiving. Doug Baldwin could be the forgotten man. He’s averaging 75.5 yards in his past two games and 52.3 per game on the season. Harvin will likely be a snap count, particularly if the game is in hand. Baldwin could slide under the radar for another solid performance. The Vikes have allowed 285.7 yards and 2.3 touchdowns. Monitor his playing status.
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Coby Fleener, TE, Indianapolis Colts
Coby Fleener is averaging 40.6 yards and and 0.4 touchdowns in his past eight games. He has been targeted 5.8 times per game during that span. He’s facing the Tennessee Titans. Five of the seven touchdowns the Titans have allowed went to tight ends.
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Nick Folk, K, New York Jets
Nick Folk is tied for fourth in the league in scoring with 23 field goals and 14 extra points. He’s facing the Buffalo Bills. The Bills have allowed 21 field goals and 28 extra points.
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Arizona Cardinals Defense
The Arizona Cardinals rank 13th in total defense (330.6 ypg allowed) and 12th in scoring defense (22 ppg allowed). They have 26 sacks and 20 takeaways. The Cards take on the Jacksonville Jaguars. The Jags rank last in total offense (278.4 ypg) and scoring offense (12.8 ppg). They have allowed 31 sacks and have 17 turnovers.
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Fantasy Basketball Stash or Pass – 11/12/13

Fantasy Basketball Stash or Pass – 11/12/13

Nov 13, 2013


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Here’s a look at last night’s fantasy basketball surprises and whether or not they should be added to fantasy roster.
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Michael Beasley, Miami Heat
Beasley scored 19 points on 8 of 12 shooting with two treys, a rebound and three assists. I’d have to see more. Pass.
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Steve Blake, Los Angeles Lakers
Blake scored 5 points on 1 of 4 shooting with a three-pointer, a rebound and 10 assists. That’s 26 assists in three games. He’s a good short-term option in that category. Stash.
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Vince Carter, Dallas Mavericks
Carter scored 16 points on 6 of 13 shooting with four triples, three rebounds and three assists. He’s worth a look if you need scoring and three-pointers. Stash.
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John Henson, Milwaukee Bucks
Henson scored 18 points on 7 of 10 shooting with three boards and a steal. He should get more run with Larry Sanders out. Stash.
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Gary, Neal, Milwaukee Bucks
Neal scored 18 points on 6 of 11 shooting with three triples, three boards, and four assists. He’s inconsistent and only worth using in daily leagues. Pass.
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Jermaine O’Neal, Golden State Warriors
O’Neal scored 17 points on 7 of 8 shooting with six rebounds. This isn’t a typical game. Pass.
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2013 Fantasy Football Kicker Rankings – NFL Week 11

2013 Fantasy Football Kicker Rankings – NFL Week 11

Nov 13, 2013

Matt Prater
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With another exciting week of football under our belts, here are the Lester’s Legends 2013 Week 11 fantasy football kicker rankings.
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1. Matt Prater, Denver Broncos
Matt Prater is tied for fourth in the league in scoring with 12 field goals and 47 extra points. I think the Kansas City Chiefs’ defense will make some stops against the Denver Broncos that will force some field goal attempts.
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2. Steven Hauschka, Seattle Seahawks
Steven Hauschka leads the league in scoring with 93 points on 22 field goals and 27 extra points. He should be very productive against the Minnesota Vikings. The Vikes have allowed 16 field goals and 33 extra points.
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3. Stephen Gostkowski, New England Patriots
Stephen Gostkowski is second in the league in scoring with 90 points on 22 field goals and 24 extra points. The New England Patriots should move the ball, but the Carolina Panthers could hold them on a few drives to field goal attempts. The Panthers have allowed 16 field goals and just seven extra points.
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4. Nick Novak, San Diego Chargers
Nick Novak has 74 points on 17 field goals and 23 extra points. He should have plenty of scoring chances against the struggling Miami Dolphins. The Dolphins have allowed 20 field goals and 21 extra points.
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5. Nick Folk, New York Jets
Nick Folk is tied for fourth in the league in scoring with 23 field goals and 14 extra points. He’s facing the Buffalo Bills. The Bills have allowed 21 field goals and 28 extra points.
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6. Garrett Hartley, New Orleans Saints
Garrett Hartley is seventh in the league in scoring with 79 points on 16 field goals and 31 extra points. I can see the San Francisco 49ers forcing a couple of field goal attempts.
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7. Mason Crosby, Green Bay Packers
Mason Crosby is third in the league in scoring with 89 points on 21 field goals and 26 extra points. He’s facing the New York Giants. The G-Men have allowed 16 points and 27 extra points.
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8. Ryan Succop, Kansas City Chiefs
Ryan Succop is eighth in the league in scoring with 77 points on 18 field goals and 23 extra points. He’s facing the Broncos. Denver has allowed 16 field goals and 24 extra points.
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9. Alex Henery, Philadelphia Eagles
Alex Henery is ninth in the league in scoring with 76 points on 16 field goals and 28 extra points. He’s facing the Washington Redskins in what should be a shootout. The Skins have allowed 11 field goals and 36 extra points.
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10. Justin Tucker, Baltimore Ravens
Justin Tucker has 72 points on 18 field goals and 18 extra points. He’s facing the Chicago Bears. The Bears have allowed 17 field goals and 28 extra points.
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Broncos outlast Cowboys in 51-48 shootout

Matt Prater’s FG pushes Broncos past Cowboys in shootout

Broncos Top Cowboys In Shootout

ARLINGTON, Texas — Peyton Manning spent all afternoon putting the Broncos in the end zone during a wild shootout with Tony Romo and the Dallas Cowboys.

The last time he got the ball, Manning kept Denver out of the end zone — and that was the best way to win the game.

The four-time MVP kept up his record pace for touchdown passes, Matt Prater kicked a 28-yard field goal as time expired after an interception by Romo spoiled the first 500-yard game in Dallas history, and the Broncos stayed unbeaten with a 51-48 victory Sunday.

More Broncos-Cowboys coverage

LegwoldThe Broncos had been inducing yawns on the way to 20-something-point wins, until the Cowboys presented a test, Jeff Legwold writes. Blog


TaylorThere are no moral victories for the Cowboys, who remain the epitome of mediocre as they find ways to lose, writes Jean-Jacques Taylor. Story

• Clayton’s Last Call: Unbeatens shine

• Stats & Info: Top stats to know

“It was pretty amazing that it came down to the defense making a big play at the end,” Denver coach John Fox said. “Thank God our offense kept us in the game all day long.”

In the waning seconds of one of the highest-scoring thrillers in NFL history, Manning ensured that his kicker — not Romo — had the last chance to score.

And with that, the Broncos ran their total to 230 points this season — the most by an NFL team through the first five games. The Broncos have also won 16 consecutive regular-season games.

The Broncos (5-0) had moved the ball to the Dallas 2 after Danny Trevathan‘s diving interception at the 24 in the final 2 minutes.

Needing a first down but not a touchdown so they could run out the clock, Manning and Knowshon Moreno shouted at each other in the backfield just before the snap.

“He basically was asking me, ‘How am I supposed to do that? How can I get a half a yard but not get a yard and a half?’ ” said Manning, who threw for 414 yards and four touchdowns to give him a record-setting 20 in the first five games.

“I just said, ‘You can’t! You can’t score! You can’t do it!’ ”

Moreno managed to pull off the first down without scoring, and Manning took three snaps to drain the clock to 2 seconds for Prater, who also had a 50-yarder among his three field goals.

50-50? More Than A Good Chance


With their 51-point outburst Sunday, the Broncos became the fourth team in NFL history to score 50 points in consecutive games. No team has ever done it three straight times.

Total Points
2013 Broncos 103
2012 Seahawks 108
1950 Rams 135
1950 Giants 106

  — ESPN Stats & Information

It was quite a debate over a measly yard in a game with 1,039 yards of total offense combined in the fourth-highest scoring game in NFL history and tied for the second-highest in regulation since the NFL-AFL merger in 1970, according to STATS.

Romo was 25 of 36 for 506 yards and five touchdowns, breaking Don Meredith’s franchise record of 460 yards. He is the fifth quarterback in NFL history to pass for at least 500 yards and five touchdowns in a game.

Romo’s 79-yard pass to Dez Bryant set up a 4-yard scoring toss to Cole Beasley for a 48-41 lead.

Manning, who threw for 414 yards and moved past Dan Marino for second on the career passing list with 61,371 yards, answered by leading a nine-play, 73-yard drive to Moreno’s tying 1-yard score with 2:44 remaining.

Romo’s interception came two plays later, when Trevathan dived in front of tight end Gavin Escobar.

“I was baiting him,” said Trevathan, who scared his teammates with a knee injury in practice last week that turned out not to be serious.

“Romo threw it and I felt like, man, hopefully I don’t drop the ball when I get in the end zone this time. I fell to the ground and said, ‘Forget it!’ ”

The Cowboys (2-3) were on the verge of getting blown out early in the second half when they finally stopped Manning and forced a field goal. They later ended his streak of 227 passes without an interception when Morris Claiborne picked him off late in the third quarter.

Dallas, which scored its most points ever in a loss, converted the turnover into a 41-38 lead on Romo’s 10-yard pass to Jason Witten, but the Broncos pulled even with a drive to Prater’s 50-yarder.

The biggest momentum swing came on Romo’s 82-yard touchdown to rookie Terrance Williams that cut Denver’s lead to 35-27 in the third quarter.

SportsNation: Broncos win in shootout

SportsNationThe Broncos beat the Cowboys 51-48. Are they unstoppable, or vulnerable? Which records will fall? Vote!

“So you leave this game and obviously you are crushed and disappointed,” said Witten, who had 121 yards receiving and a touchdown. “Offensively, this needs to be the standard by which we play.”

The Cowboys jumped ahead 14-0 in the first quarter, but Dallas defenders just couldn’t stay with Denver’s receivers. Then Manning fooled them and the 92,758 watching his first game at the $1.2 billion home of the Cowboys with a bootleg for an easy 1-yard score and a 28-17 lead late in the first half.

Denver lined up for what looked like a run on third down from the 1. But Manning had faked the handoff, and the roar from thousands of orange-clad Denver fans grew as they realized he was jogging toward the left corner of the end zone for his first touchdown rushing since 2008.

“The key is you want to do it about every five years or so,” Manning said. “If you do it every game, they’re going to be playing it right. Naked bootlegs only work, the ones I’ve done, is when you don’ tell anybody.”

Romo got Dallas in position for a 48-yard field goal by Dan Bailey just before halftime with a 38-yard completion to Williams, who had 151 yards receiving.

Bryant had six catches for 141 yards and two touchdowns.

Julius Thomas led the Broncos with 122 yards and two scores, and Moreno had 93 yards rushing for the Broncos.

Game notes: Manning fell two passes short of Jake Plummer‘s franchise record of 229 straight passes without an interception. Plummer set the mark in 2005. … Manning’s 20 TDs through five games broke Daunte Culpepper‘s record for Minnesota of 18 in 2004. … Broncos CB Chris Harris, who started in place of Champ Bailey, didn’t play in the second half because of a concussion.

Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press

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Ravens part ways with veteran WR Stokley


The Baltimore Ravens cut wide receiver Brandon Stokley and re-signed tight end Billy Bajema for Sunday’s game at the Miami Dolphins.

Stokley was inactive last Sunday because of a groin injury and didn’t practice Friday. He caught nine passes for 79 yards for the Ravens in three games.

The Ravens added Bajema because they only had two other tight ends on the roster — Dallas Clark and Ed Dickson. Bajema was released earlier in the week to make room for offensive tackle Eugene Monroe, who was acquired in a trade from Jacksonville.

This was Stokley’s second stint with the Ravens. He caught a touchdown pass for the Ravens in their first Super Bowl victory in January 2001. The Baltimore Sun reported that Stokley could possibly be re-signed by the Ravens next week.

  • University of Maryland graduate
  • Lives in the Baltimore area with his wife and son

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