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Garcia rallies 'Niners to cardiac comeback

Posted: Monday, November 19, 2001

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP)-- Jeff Garcia threw a 7-yard touchdown pass to Terrell Owens and made a 2-point conversion with 1 second left in regulation. Then the quarterback helped set up Jose Cortez's 26-yard field goal Sunday that lifted San Francisco to a 25-22 win over the Carolina Panthers.

It was the fourth time this season Garcia rallied San Francisco (7-2) to either win or tie a game in the waning moments of the fourth quarter. The 49ers are 3-1 in overtime in 2001.

And it gave the 49ers a season sweep over the Panthers (1-9), dropping Carolina coach George Seifert to 4-2 against the team he coached to two Super Bowl titles. It was Carolina's ninth straight loss this season.

Garcia finished 34-for-54 for 305 yards, three touchdowns and two interceptions.

Bears 27, Bucs 24

TAMPA, Fla. -- Jim Miller threw three touchdown passes to Marty Booker and the Bears held on when Martin Gramatica's 49-yard field goal bounced off the right upright as time expired.

The Bears (7-2) have won twice in overtime this season after wiping out double-digit deficits in the closing minutes of regulation. This time, they nearly let an 11-point lead slip away in the final seven minutes.

Tampa Bay pulled within three on Brad Johnson's quarterback sneak and 2-point conversion pass to Mike Alstott with 2:29 to go. The Bears were unable to run out the clock, and the Bucs (4-5) moved in position to tie, but Gramatica missed.

Johnson was 40-for-56 for 399 yards.

Rams 24, Patriots 17

FOXBORO, Mass. -- Despite injuries to five players, four on defense, the Rams (8-1) rode Kurt Warner's 401-yard passing effort. Warner overcame an injured right thumb that cut his practice time last week, and capitalized on three New England turnovers.

The Patriots (5-5) sputtered even though St. Louis' defense was missing first-round draft picks tackle Damione Lewis (broken right foot) and strong safety Adam Archuleta (concussion), plus linebacker Mark Fields (sparined ankle) and end Leonard Little (sprained knee). Wide receiver Az-Zahir Hakim left in the first quarter with a sprained left ankle.

Cardinals 45, Lions 38

TEMPE, Ariz. -- Jake Plummer passed for 334 yards and four touchdowns, two to David Boston, as the Cardinals rallied from 10 points down to keep the Lions winless.

It was the sixth consecutive time Detroit (0-9) has lost by a touchdown or less.

Plummer led the Cardinals to a fourth-quarter comeback for the 14th time in his career and second time this season. Arizona (3-6) had just 13 touchdowns in its first eight games.

Redskins 17, Broncos 10

DENVER -- Kent Graham threw two touchdown passes in the fourth quarter as the Redskins won their fourth straight after opening the season with five losses.

Graham led the Redskins to all their points, replacing Tony Banks after he suffered a concussion and was carried off the field late in the first half.

Following a Denver fumble with the score 10-3, Graham capped a 50-yard drive with a 5-yard touchdown pass to Michael Westbrook.

In the snow, Washington finished with six fumbles, three of which it lost, and seven dropped passes. Denver (5-5) had six fumbles, two of which were lost, and five drops.

Raiders 34, Chargers 24

OAKLAND, Calif. -- Jerry Rice caught three of Rich Gannon's four touchdown passes, including a 20-yard score with 2:46 to play.

Rice caught eight passes for 131 yards in his biggest game since joining the Raiders (7-2) in the offseason -- and his first 100-yard receiving game since the 1999 season finale with the 49ers.

Oakland won its 10th straight regular-season home game, the longest streak in the NFL.

Ronney Jenkins scored on a 93-yard kickoff return for the Chargers (5-5), who lost their third straight after a promising start. Jenkins also had a 67-yard return that set up a field goal.

Steelers 20, Jaguars 7

PITTSBURGH -- Kordell Stewart hit Hines Ward for a 28-yard score and also ran for a TD. Stewart, forced to carry the offense with Jerome Bettis held to minus yardage for much of the game, threw for 266 yards and ran for 51 for the Steelers (7-2).

Ward had nine catches for 112 yards, his first 100-yard game in the NFL.

With RB Fred Taylor injured and QB Mark Brunell unexpectedly sitting out with a strained right quadriceps, the Jaguars (3-7) got only Elvis Joseph's 95-yard kickoff return.

Falcons 23, Packers 20

GREEN BAY, Wis. -- Green Bay melted down on an unseasonably warm day at Lambeau Field.

Needing about 15 yards to get in field-goal range, Brett Favre instead threw a deep pass that Ashley Ambrose intercepted at the 2 with 1:08 remaining. Ambrose also picked off Favre's first pass on a day when temperature at kickoff was 59 degrees -- more normal for Atlanta (5-4).

Favre lost for just the 12th time in 75 home games, was intercepted three times and fumbled twice, losing one. The Packers (6-3), winners of nine straight at home, also lost safety LeRoy Butler, who was making his 128th consecutive start, to a broken shoulder blade.

Chris Chandler, back after missing a game with bruised ribs, completed 29 of 50 passes for 352 yards, two touchdowns and two interceptions.

Saints 34, Colts 20

NEW ORLEANS ) -- Aided by an official's call that could have put Indianapolis (4-5) ahead at halftime, the Saints (5-4) held on as Aaron Brooks shook off a slow start and four sacks, throwing for 249 yards and two touchdowns.

Near the end of the first half, Peyton Manning ran in from the 33 after faking a spike. But officials appeared to be faked out as well, blowing their whistles to halt play. According to Jim Daopoulos, an NFL supervisor of officials, field officials ruled that whistles blew with a second left on the clock, although television replays showed no time remaining.

Mike Vanderjagt kicked a 52-yard field goal to make it 17-17 at the half.

The victory spoiled the homecoming of Manning, a New Orleans native, and Indianapolis coach Jim Mora, who coached the Saints for 10 1/2 years.

Jets 24, Dolphins 0

MIAMI -- New York's typically opportunistic defense scored on interception returns of 60 yards by Aaron Glenn and 63 yards by Victor Green, helping the Jets beat Miami for the eighth consecutive time.

The Dolphins (6-3) were shut out at home for the first time since 1970. The Jets (7-3) earned their fourth victory in a row and are 5-0 on the road.

By getting five takeaways for 33 on the season, the Jets now have a league-leading plus-22 turnover differential.

Seahawks 23, Bills 20

ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. -- Shaun Alexander rushed for 93 yards and scored the go-ahead touchdown as the Seahawks (5-4) spoiled the day for Jim Kelly.

Kelly, who quarterbacked the Bills to four Super Bowl appearances, had his No. 12 retired and his name placed on Ralph Wilson Stadium's Wall of Fame at halftime.

The Bills (1-8) are off to their worst start in 16 years, and have lost seven straight at home going back to last season. It's Buffalo's longest home losing streak since dropping eight straight spanning the 1983-84 seasons.

Eagles 36, Cowboys 3

IRVING, Texas-- Jeremiah Trotter returned an interception 50 yards for a touchdown to close the first half. William Hampton returned Ryan Leaf's other interception 33 yards for a score with 2:51 left in the game.

David Akers had a career high with five field goals.

Emmitt Smith, back in the Cowboys' lineup after missing two games with a sprained right knee, fumbled early. Bobby Taylor recovered at the 25 and Donovan McNabb threw a 2-yard TD pass to Chad Lewis. The Eagles never were challenged after that.

Despite their 2-7 record, the Cowboys have only been blown out of two games -- both against the Eagles (6-3).

Browns 27, Ravens 17

BALTIMORE -- Anthony Henry had three of Cleveland's four interceptions against Elvis Grbac.

Grbac committed five turnovers, yet the Ravens (6-4) nearly overcame those miscues and a 17-0 deficit. But with Cleveland nursing a 20-17 lead, Tim Couch moved the Browns 58 yards in 12 plays for the clinching touchdown with 4:02 left.

Baltimore's eight-game run at home also came to an end as Devin Bush returned an interception 43 yards for a touchdown for Cleveland (5-4).

Baltimore's Shannon Sharpe, who had seven catches for 78 yards, set an NFL record for career receptions by a tight end. He has 669, seven more than Ravens senior vice president of football operations Ozzie Newsome amassed during his Hall of Fame career with the Cleveland Browns.

Titans 20, Bengals 7

CINCINNATI -- Derrick Mason returned the opening kickoff 101 yards, and Kevin Dyson caught a 28-yard touchdown pass for Tennessee (4-5), which was coming off a 16-10 loss to Baltimore that could have scuttled its season.

The Titans were jumping and hugging in celebration on the sideline as Mason returned the opening kickoff against the Bengals (4-5), who started badly and never recovered.

The Titans' defense clamped down on Corey Dillon, limiting him to 38 yards on 17 runs.



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