Rams stun Saints; Steelers solve Brady and Patriots

by Simon Evans, Reuters

Posted at Oct 31 2011 02:52 PM | Updated as of Oct 31 2011 10:52 PM

ST. LOUIS - The New Orleans Saints suffered a shock 31-21 defeat to the previously winless St. Louis Rams and the Pittsburgh Steelers beat the New England Patriots in National Football League action on Sunday.

The Rams secured their first win of the season when Saints quarterback Drew Brees had a pass into coverage intercepted by Darian Stewart, who ran 27 yards for a touchdown late in the fourth quarter that put the game out of reach.

The win was even more impressive given the Rams (1-6) were without starting quarterback Sam Bradford, who is out with an ankle injury. In his absence A.J. Feeley completed 20 of 37 passes as he threw for 175 yards and one touchdown.

The key man in the Rams offense was running back Steven Jackson who rushed for 159 yards and two touchdowns.

The Patriots (5-2) have dominated the Steelers (6-2) in recent exchanges, winning four of the last five meetings, but Pittsburgh's Ben Roethlisberger showed he is back to his best passing for 365 yards and two touchdowns in a 25-17 win.

Patriots quarterback Tom Brady threw for two touchdowns but the Steelers managed the clock well after two field goals from Shaun Suisham had established their lead.

Aaron Hernandez caught a one-yard touchdown pass from Brady to bring New England within six points with 2:35 to play but the Steelers held firm and ended any chance of a Patriots rally when Brady was sacked and the ball rolled out of the end zone in the final seconds for a safety.

Eli Manning led the Giants' (5-2) comeback win against Miami (0-7), who had an 11-point lead in the second quarter after a one-yard touchdown run from quarterback Matt Moore.

Manning found Victor Cruz with a 25-yard touchdown pass to secure a win which will lead to further pressure on Miami's beleaguered head coach Tony Sparano.

The Baltimore Ravens (5-2) overcame an even bigger deficit, rallying from 21 points down, to eke out a 30-27 win over the Arizona Cardinals (1-6).

A Billy Cundiff field goal with 52 seconds to play grabbed the win for the Ravens but it was running back Ray Rice who got Baltimore in a game-winning position with three touchdowns as he rushed for 63 yards.

The result was the biggest comeback win in Ravens franchise history.

Authoritative passing

Tim Tebow was the talk of the NFL last week after leading the Denver Broncos (2-5) to a remarkable comeback win at Miami but it was a different story for the quarterback at home to the Detroit Lions (6-2).

The former Heisman Trophy winner as the top U.S. collegiate player was sacked seven times in a 45-10 loss to a Detroit team that turned Tebows's two turnovers into touchdowns.

Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford, who suffered a sprained ankle in last week's loss to the Atlanta Falcons, gave a contrasting display of authoritative passing as he threw for 267 yards and three touchdowns.

The Buffalo Bills (5-2) defense enjoyed nine sacks as they shut out the Washington Redskins (3-4), winning 23-0 in Toronto where Scott Chandler caught a pair of touchdown passes from Ryan Fitzpatrick. [ID:nN1E79T0AZ]

The Indianapolis Colts' (0-8) miserable campaign without injured quarterback Peyton Manning continued with a 27-10 loss at the Tennessee Titans (4-3) during which Nate Washington scored twice for the home side.

Colts quarterback Curtis Painter threw two interceptions both of which the Titans turned into touchdowns.

Rookie Cam Newton threw for three touchdowns and 290 yards but again finished on the losing side as the Carolina Panthers (2-6) fell 24-21 to the Minnesota Vikings (2-6).

Adrian Peterson scored two touchdowns and had 86 yards rushing and 76 yards receiving for the Vikings who won with a 31-yard field goal from Ryan Longwell with under three minutes to play.

(Editing by Frank Pingue; To query or comment on this story email [email protected])