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Texans upset Dallas in franchise's first game

Posted: Monday, September 09, 2002

HOUSTON -- Just one game into their inaugural season, the Houston Texans showed they know what it takes to win in the NFL.

Rookie quarterback David Carr came out heaving, throwing a touchdown for his first completion. He later hit Corey Bradford for a 65-yard touchdown early in the fourth quarter to beat the state rival Dallas Cowboys 19-10 on Sunday in the first game in franchise history.

Carr was 10-for-22 for 145 yards with two touchdowns and an interception.

The points that sealed it came with 2:37 left when Seth Payne sacked Dallas' Quincy Carter in the end zone for a safety.

Chiefs 40, Browns 39

CLEVELAND -- Wild finishes are becoming routine -- and embarrassing -- for the Cleveland Browns.

This time, Dwayne Rudd cost the Browns a victory after drawing an unsportsmanlike conduct penalty for throwing his helmet in celebration. That set up Morten Andersen's 30-yard field goal with no time showing.

''I'm sick,'' Browns coach Butch Davis said. ''To have something like that happen at the end is inexcusable.''

It was the second straight bizarre home loss. Cleveland's home finale last season ended with angry fans throwing thousands of plastic beer bottles on the field to protest a call overturned by instant replay.

Rudd, thinking he had sacked Kansas City's Trent Green, had his back to the play and didn't see the quarterback flip the ball to 6-foot-6, 323-pound tackle John Tait, who ran 28 yards to the Browns 25.

As Rudd picked up his helmet -- which he tossed 15 yards down field -- the officials moved the ball half the distance to the goal line for Andersen, whose game-winning kick capped a 23-point fourth quarter for Kansas City.

Jets 37, Bills 31, OT

ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. -- Chad Morton ran back two kickoffs, including a 96-yarder to start overtime, lifting New York over Buffalo.

Morton is just the second player in NFL history to return an overtime kickoff for a touchdown. On Nov. 27, 1980, Chicago's Dave Williams took the opening OT kickoff for a score, leading the Bears past the Detroit Lions 23-17.

Saints 26, Bucs 20, OT

TAMPA, Fla. -- A botched pass in the end zone by Tampa Bay punter Tom Tupa landed in the wrong hands and gave New Orleans a victory.

Tupa, trying to avoid being tackled for a safety, tossed a weak, left-handed pass directly to James Allen in the middle of the end zone with 2:50 remaining in overtime.

Allen's TD provided a bizarre ending to a frustrating day for Tampa Bay, which scored 10 points in the last three minutes of regulation to force the game into overtime.

The Bucs sent it to an extra period on Martin Gramatica's 40-yard field goal on the last play of regulation.

Packers 37, Falcons 34, OT

GREEN BAY, Wis. -- Ryan Longwell's 34-yard field goal with 5:15 left in overtime gave Green Bay a victory over Atlanta.

Jay Feely sent it into overtime with a 52-yard field goal for the Falcons with five seconds left in regulation. That capped a six-play, 35-yard drive that followed William Henderson's dive into the end zone on fourth-and-inches with 1:10 left that had given Green Bay a 34-31 lead.

The Packers avenged their only home loss last year behind Brett Favre, who completed 25 of 36 passes for 284 yards and two touchdowns, and Ahman Green, who rushed 27 times for 155 yards.

Redskins 31, Cardinals 23

LANDOVER, Md. -- Steve Spurrier had no chance to run up the score in his NFL coaching debut. The way his defense and special teams played, he needed all the points he could get.

Shane Matthews threw three touchdown passes, and Stephen Davis had 150 total yards as Washington held off Arizona.

Matthews completed 28 of 40 passes for 327 yards, and Davis ran 26 times for 104 yards and caught seven passes for 46 yards. Rod Gardner had seven catches for 131 yards and a touchdown. The 442 yards of total offense was only 1 yard less than the Redskins had in any game last season.

Panthers 10, Ravens 7

CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- A day short of the first anniversary of its last victory, Carolina finally clawed its way back into the win column in John Fox's coaching debut.

John Kasay, the only original Panther on the roster, kicked a 27-yard field goal, and Wesley Walls, a member of Carolina's 1996 team that went to the NFC championship game, caught a 20-yard touchdown pass from Rodney Peete as all the scoring came in the first half.

Dolphins 49, Lions 21

MIAMI -- Ricky Williams rushed for 111 yards and two touchdowns in his Miami debut, Jay Fiedler threw three touchdown passes and the Dolphins won their opener for the 11th year in a row.

Williams carried 20 times, scored on runs of 1 and 2 yards and set up another touchdown with a 37-yard run, the second-longest of his career.

The Lions trailed 21-0 after just 20 minutes. Detroit also fell behind 21-0 in its opener last year against Green Bay, lost 28-6 and went on to go 2-14.

Chargers 34, Bengals 6

CINCINNATI -- Drew Brees threw two touchdown passes, led a 95-yard drive, blocked downfield on a reverse and bowled over a Cincinnati tackler during a scramble, leading San Diego to a win in his first NFL start.

Colts 28, Jaguars 25

JACKSONVILLE -- Peyton Manning threw for three scores -- two to Qadry Ismail and one to Marvin Harrison -- to lift Indianapolis over Jacksonville, its new division rival.

Manning went 19-of-31 for 211 yards, and Edgerrin James rushed for 99 yards on 26 carries in his first appearance since a knee injury last October.

Trailing 28-17, Mark Brunell led the Jaguars on a 75-yard touchdown drive, and a 2-point conversion pulled them within three with 4:11 left.

Three minutes later, Jacksonville got the ball back and moved to the Colts 46. But Brunell's Hail Mary attempt went out of bounds, and the clock ran out.

Titans 27, Eagles 24

NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- Steve McNair threw for a touchdown and Eddie George scored on a 2-yard run with 3:09 remaining as Tennessee rallied to beat Philadelphia.

The defending NFC East champions had two chances in the final 3:03, but the Eagles went three-and-out on their first possession. On the Eagles' last possession, rookie Carlos Hall sacked Donovan McNabb for the third time, knocking the ball loose and Titans end Kevin Carter recovered with 1:12 to go.

Bears 27, Vikings 23

CHAMPAIGN, Ill. -- Jim Miller hit David Terrell on a 9-yard touchdown pass with 28 seconds left as Chicago scored twice in the final 6:13 and stunned Minnesota in Mike Tice's debut as the Vikings head coach.

The Bears trailed by 10 early in the final period. After Miller hooked up with Marty Booker on a 54-yard pass to set up Anthony Thomas' 1-yard TD run, Chicago trailed by three with 6:13 to go.

Mike Brown intercepted Daunte Culpepper's pass and returned it 16 yards to the Bears 49 with 2:34 remaining to set up the winning score.

Broncos 23, Rams 16

DENVER -- Brian Griese threw for 202 yards and two touchdowns, and led Denver on a 71-yard drive for the deciding score as Denver beat St. Louis.

Griese was 4-of-4 for 56 yards on the winning drive, capping it with a 23-yard touchdown pass to Ed McCaffrey that put the Broncos up 23-13 with just under six minutes left.

St. Louis' Marshall Faulk, the league MVP in 2000, had a career-high 14 catches for 91 yards, but had just 19 yards on 10 carries. Kurt Warner was 32-for-41 for 315 yards, but didn't have a touchdown, was sacked three times and threw an interception.

Raiders 31, Seahawks 17

OAKLAND, Calif. -- Rich Gannon completed 19 of 28 passes for 214 yards and two touchdowns while Charlie Garner amassed 187 total yards and scored two touchdowns in the Raiders win over the Seahawks, giving coach Bill Callahan a win in his debut.

Callahan replaced Jon Gruden, who left for Tampa Bay.

The Raiders tallied 24 straight points to beat the Seahawks for the fifth straight time in the Coliseum since 1997.



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