Green Bay 24, St. Louis 3
The number: 0 – The Rams got inside the red zone three times but managed a field goal, interception and turnover on downs. That explains how the Rams wound up getting blasted despite beating the Packers in yards (424-399), first downs (22-20) and plays (72-61). Rams quarterback Sam Bradford completed 2-of-5 passes for 9 yards and the interception once penetrating the Packers' 20-yard line.
The player: Aaron Rodgers became the first player in NFL history to start the season with six consecutive games with passer ratings of at least 110. Nobody, in fact, has started the season with more than four. Rodgers finished the first half with a near-perfect 154.9 rating – 11-of-15 for 234 yards and three touchdowns. He wound up 17-of-28 for 310 yards with three touchdowns, one interception and a rating of 119.6. He would have had a monster game if not for four drops – one of which resulted in the interception.
The moment: The Packers led 3-0 and had just stopped a fourth-and-3 pass from Bradford to Danario Alexander. From there, the rout was on, with Rodgers guiding touchdown drives of five plays for 59 yards, another of one play for 93 yards and 11 plays for 62 yards to turn a game into the expected mismatch.
The division: The Packers are the NFL's lone undefeated team, their 6-0 mark one game clear of Detroit (5-1), which lost to San Francisco. The Bears pounded the Vikings 39-10 in the late game as Devin Hester had a 48-yard touchdown catch and 98-yard kickoff return. Chicago improved to 3-3. Minnesota, which hosts Green Bay on Sunday, is 1-5.
Rams said: "Personally, I think they are (the best team in the NFL). We would have loved to beat them but they played well. We made more mistakes than they did; they made more plays that we did." -- Al Harris, former Packers cornerback who started for St. Louis
Packers said: "No, it didn't feel like 400 (yards). I looked up there, and I think it was 424. I told Tramon (Williams), 'Hey, they have over 400 yards.' He's like, 'Who, Aaron?' So, we all expect Aaron to go over 400. No, it didn't seem that way. But if you think about it, they moved the ball pretty well up and down the field. So, those yards, they begin to add up. But the important thing is, you keep them out of the end zone, you'll be fine." -- cornerback Charles Woodson
San Francisco 25, Detroit 19
Key: San Francisco quarterback Alex Smith passed for just 125 yards but the last six mattered the most. On fourth-and-goal from the 6, he hit tight end Delanie Walker on a slant pass for the go-ahead score. Smith said he expected the Lions to bring pressure and needed to beat them with a quick throw. Smith didn't have to do too much earlier because Frank Gore gained 141 rushing yards.
"It says we've got a lot of character," coach Jim Harbaugh said. "They've got steel in their spine. I feel like something special is really brewing here."
Something strange was brewing immediately after the game during the traditional coaches handshake. Detroit coach Jim Schwartz got infuriated when Harbaugh gave him an overaggressive greeting.
"I was just really revved up and shook his hand too hard," Harbaugh said. "Then it felt like a chest bump there but I don't take it personally. That was on me."
An agitated Schwartz had a different interpretation of the altercation.
"I went to congratulate Coach Harbaugh and got shoved out of the way," he said. "I didn't expect an obscenity at that point, I'll leave it at that. Obviously, you win a game like that, you're excited and things like that but I think there's a protocol that goes with this league."
49ers said: "It's so different. The commitment level, the sacrifice. The guys are just different. It's fun to be a part of. We don't quit and it shows up on gameday." - quarterback Alex Smith
Lions said: "We have the ability to dominate games offensively, defensively and on special teams with the players we have and the coaches we have. We're not playing dominant football right now." - defensive end Kyle Vanden Bosch
Tampa Bay 26, New Orleans 20
Key: The Bucs intercepted Saints QB Drew Brees, including once in the end zone by linebacker Quincy Black on fourth-and-2 from the Tampa Bay 4-yard line trailing by 26-20.
Buccaneers said: "Brees, he doesn't make those kind of mistakes too often. I was at the right place in the right time and made the play and took a knee." - linebacker Quincy Black
Saints said: "We just had kind of a hard play action fake going right to try and push the ball in the flat to somebody, somebody in the corner and somebody coming over. They had it all covered up pretty well, so I tried to scramble and got to a point where, hey, it's fourth down and throw it up and just didn't quite get it up high enough over the linebacker. I felt like I had Jimmy (Graham) on the back line. It would've been a tight window. I just didn't put enough on it." - quarterback Drew Brees
New England 20, Dallas 16
Key: Tom Brady started a drive at his own 20 with 2:31 left and took his team 80 yards for the winning touchdown, allowing the Patriots to win despite committing four turnovers. "We're not going to win many games with four turnovers -- we were fortunate today," said coach Bill Belichick.
Cowboys said: "That's why he won three Super Bowls. Obviously, when it comes to crunch time, he is at his best." -- Keith Brooking, linebacker, on Tom Brady.
Patriots said: "I see this guy every day ... he's one of the toughest competitors I've ever seen." -- nose tackle Vince Wilfork on Brady
Baltimore 29, Houston 14
Key: The Ravens dominated time of possession in the second half, controlling the ball for nearly 18 minutes, allowing them to reel of 16 unanswered points and put the game away.
Ravens said: "I'm past (worrying about stats). My whole career has been built around that. I'm just to the point now where I just want to win the championship. Whatever that takes, I'm going to do it." -- wide receiver Anquan Boldin
Texans said: "I think that when your back is against the wall, you have to fight. That's when we're at our best." -- defensive end Antonio Smith
Oakland 24, Cleveland 17
Key: The Raiders lost QB Jason Campbell (collarbone) in the first half but killed Cleveland with a pair of huge special teams touchdowns, Jacoby Ford returning a kickoff 101 yards and punter/holder Shane Lechler hitting tight end Kevin Boss on a 35-yard TD strike on a fake field goal. That was too much for the Browns to overcome.
Raiders said: "Coach (Al) Davis, if it wasn't for him we wouldn't be here. And to get this win for the organization, for him -- we're 4-2, that's where we want to be." -- Backup quarterback Kyle Boller
Browns said: "The attitude's right, the effort's there. We just have to clean up some things." -- quarterback Colt McCoy
Cincinnati 27, Indianapolis 17
Key: Colts defensive ends Dwight Freeney and Robert Mathis came into the game with a combined eight sacks and three forced fumbles but Cincinnati tackles Andrew Whitworth and Andre Smith made the pair virtual non-factors in the game. Neither was credited with a tackle and the only mention of either on the stat sheet was a pass breakup at the line of scrimmage by Mathis.
Colts said: "We left it out on the field. The game was ours to win but could've, would've, should've won't get it done." -- defensive end Robert Mathis
Bengals said: "We did an outstanding job and worked on it hard this week. They have the two best defensive ends that I've ever seen play and for us to keep them to away from the quarterback was big for us." -- offensive tackle Andre Smith
Philadelphia 20, Washington 13
Redskins quarterback Rex Grossman was 9-of-22 and threw four interceptions before getting benched late in the third quarter. The revamped Eagles' offensive line allowed just two sacks in 32 dropbacks against a Washington pass rush that was averaging four sacks.
Eagles said: "We don't like the way we started to this point, but we still control our own destiny. ... We got a long road ahead of us (but) we're not that far out (in the division)." - defensive tackle Cullen Jenkins
Redskins said: "We would have liked to get another game up in our division. I knew we would get their best shot, but I was also expecting us to give them our best shot and we didn't do that." - linebacker London Fletcher
New York Giants 27, Buffalo 24
Key: The Giants, who turned the ball over in their previous two games, made things a lot easier for themselves as this week by ensuring that their ball security was pristine. Meanwhile the Giants defense, taking a page out of Buffalo's playbook, came up with two interceptions, converting one of them into the game-winning drive.
Bills said: "The two interceptions I threw -- couldn't ask for better coverage, couldn't ask for a better play, or a better route. I give credit to Corey Webster. He made plays on both of them." - QB Ryan Fitzpatrick
Giants said: "Corey Webster is a great player. Teams don't realty throw to his side, and he made them pay." - defensive end Osi Umenyiora
Pittsburgh 17, Jacksonville 13
Key: Pittsburgh's offense cooled after a hot start, forcing the Steelers' defense to halt a Jacksonville rally in the fourth quarter. Rashard Mendenhall rushed for 146 yards on 23 carries and scored a touchdown, while Ben Roethlisberger completed 12-of-23 passes for 200 yards. But the Steelers had just 55 of their 370 yards of offense in the second half, and Jacksonville scored 13 unanswered points to make the game close at the end.
Steelers said: "If you get out to a 17-point lead and get comfortable, you take it off their throat. We have to keep the same intensity the whole game. We started out with a lot of intensity and then we fell of a little bit." - wide receiver Mike Wallace
Jaguars said: "I think we are very close. I think we are just a couple plays away from being great on defense. Offensively, we're right there. It's two or three plays in each game that we have to make that we aren't making right now." -- linebacker Paul Posluszny
Atlanta 31, Carolina 17
Key: Atlanta quarterback Matt Ryan was sacked just once for four yards and RB Michael Turner rushed for 139 yards, which meant it was a big day for the Falcons offensive line, which has been heavily criticized the first month of the season.
Falcons said: "Really liked the way we got our run game going blocking up to the second level -- and wide receivers blocking downfield then you have an opportunity to have explosive plays." - coach Mike Smith.
Panthers said: "They were throwing flags for no reason at all. Roddy was laughing about the call. You're on the road. You have to fight through things like that." - cornerback Chris Gamble