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Posted: Sunday December 02, 2001 8:52 PM
Updated: Tuesday December 04, 2001 2:15 AM


CNNSI.com's Jon A. Dolezar reviews the Week 12 games.
Week Twelve
   Philadelphia 23 at Kansas City, Mo.
   Kansas City 10 Recap
Game Summary
Key Stat 35:00 -- Time of possession for the Eagles, who controlled the ball with their passing game in the West Coast offense despite struggling on the ground with only a 3.5-yard-per-carry average.
Player of
the Game
Donovan McNabb, QB, Philadelphia: Completed 18 of 26 for 269 yards and two touchdowns and also ran nine times for 41 yards.
Breakdown Philadelphia needed a bounce-back game after laying an egg at home against Washington last Sunday. McNabb and the Eagles' offense made sure Philly didn't continue its slide back to the pack in the NFC East. McNabb led the Eagles to their eighth road win in a row with his short, accurate passes. The Chiefs got another balanced game from Priest Holmes (176 total yards on 26 touches), but Kansas City's defense couldn't do enough to keep McNabb and the passing attack in check.

   Chicago 13 at Chicago
   Detroit 10 Recap
Game Summary
Key Stat 6 -- Teams to start a season 0-11 since the Buccaneers went winless in the 1976 season.
Player of
the Game
Mike Brown, SS, Chicago: Didn't run back the winning pick in overtime this week, but finished with five tackles, two sacks and one fumble recovery.
Breakdown The Bears continue to look like a team of destiny after pulling out a win against the Lions with 10 fourth-quarter points. Chicago likely would've suffered the embarrassing defeat if not for the inaccurate leg of Jason Hanson (1-for-4 on field goals). James Allen finished with 93 yards on 25 carries, but the Bears' offense never really got on track as the Lions continued to play teams close only to lose late in the game.

   Pittsburgh 21 at Pittsburgh
   Minnesota 16 Recap
Game Summary
Key Stat 37:49 -- Time of possession by the Steelers, who rushed 46 times for 207 yards.
Player of
the Game
Brent Alexander, FS, Pittsburgh: Picked off two passes and added six tackles.
Breakdown The Steelers' recipe for success keeps cooking up wins. Clock control, taking care of the football and a bend-but-don't-break defense have Pittsburgh within striking distance of its first division title since 1997. Jerome Bettis rushed 19 times for 81 yards and one touchdown to give him his seventh consecutive 1,000-yard season. Todd Bouman completed 11 of 15 for 200 yards and two touchdowns mostly in garbage time after replacing the injured Daunte Culpepper.

   New England 17 at East Rutherford, N.J.
   New York 16 Recap
Game Summary
Key Stat 6.2 -- Yards per passing attempt for the Patriots, who threw 28 passes for a net 191 yards.
Player of
the Game
Tom Brady, QB, New England: Completed 20 of 28 for 213 yards to improve his record to 7-3 as a starter.
Breakdown A sloppy first half gave way to an impressive second-half comeback that allowed the Patriots to snap the Jets' four-game winning streak. Antowain Smith gained only 28 yards on 12 carries, but his 4-yard touchdown run in the third got New England on the scoreboard and changed the momentum. The Dolphins lead the division at 8-3, but the 7-4 Jets and 7-5 Patriots are still in what should one of the better division races down the stretch.

   Miami 21 at Miami
   Denver 10 Recap
Game Summary
Key Stat 1.9 -- Yards per carry by the Dolphins, who rushed 22 times for only 42 yards.
Player of
the Game
Kenny Mixon, DE, Miami: Reserve lineman picked off Brian Griese in the fourth quarter and ran it back 56 yards for a score to give the Dolphins the lead for good.
Breakdown A sluggish first three quarters by the Dolphins were rectified by a furious final 15 minutes when they scored 21 points. The Broncos were forced to rely on their ground game with their receiving corps so decimated by injuries. Terrell Davis carried 20 times for 97 yards but couldn't find the end zone. Zach Thomas finished with 13 total tackles to lead all players.

   Baltimore 39 at Baltimore
   Indianapolis 27 Recap
Game Summary
Key Stat 6 -- Fumbles lost in the game, with each team turning it over on all three of their fumbles.
Player of
the Game
Ray Lewis, LB, Baltimore: Made 18 total tackles, recorded one sack and recovered a fumble in one of the top individual defensive efforts this season.
Breakdown The fourth time may be a charm for the Ravens' running game. With Jamal Lewis, Terry Allen and Jason Brookins out with injuries, fourth-option Moe Williams gained a career-high 111 yards on 24 carries. Peyton Manning completed 27 of 48 for 310 yards and two touchdowns, but had an interception run back for a touchdown by Rod Woodson in the fourth quarter, the sixth time this season he has had a pick returned for a score.

   Tampa Bay 16 at Cincinnati
   Cincinnati 13 (OT) Recap
Game Summary
Key Stat 39:40 -- Time of possession for the Bucs, who completed 26 of 33 passes to control the clock despite averaging only 2.2 yards per rush.
Player of
the Game
John Lynch, SS, Tampa Bay: Finished with seven total tackles and caused and recovered the fumble in overtime that led to Martin Gramatica's game-winning field goal.
Breakdown The Buccaneers' offense struggled yet again, doing just enough to escape with a close victory. Brad Johnson completed 78.8 percent of his passes (including his first 14 of the game), but failed to throw a touchdown pass for the sixth time this season. Keyshawn Johnson continued his quest for a touchdown-less season, catching seven passes for 85 yards, giving him 83 catches for 976 yards.

   Tennessee 31 at Cleveland
   Cleveland 15 Recap
Game Summary
Key Stat 14.3 -- Yards per pass for the Titans, who completed 19 passes for a net 272 yards.
Player of
the Game
Steve McNair, QB, Tennessee: Despite a sore elbow, played his best game of the season by completing 11 of 17 for 244 and three touchdowns.
Breakdown The Browns blew a golden opportunity to better their playoff position and let the Titans back into the wild-card chase at the same time. McNair hooked up with Derrick Mason on three completions for 122 yards and two touchdowns and Kevin Dyson grabbed six balls for 110 yards. Eddie George continued to struggle on the ground, gaining only 51 yards and one touchdown on 23 carries.

   New Orleans 27 at New Orleans
   Carolina 23 Recap
Game Summary
Key Stat 282 -- Yards by which the Saints (432) outgained the Panthers (150).
Player of
the Game
Aaron Brooks, QB, New Orleans: Completed 26 of 40 for 330 yards and three touchdowns.
Breakdown The Saints dominated the Panthers in every facet of the game, though the four-point margin of victory belies the statistics. New Orleans controlled the clock for 37:18 by rushing 34 times for 125 yards and averaging an impressive 7.1 yards per pass. Chris Weinke rushed for two short touchdowns but was sacked eight times, two each by Charlie Clemons and La'Roi Glover. Ricky Williams finished with 174 total yards on 31 touches, giving him 1,456 total yards this season.

   Seattle 13 at San Diego
   San Diego 10 (OT) Recap
Game Summary
Key Stat 36:59 -- Time of possession for the Seahawks, who rushed 36 times for 117 yards.
Player of
the Game
Anthony Simmons, LB, Seattle: Led the Seahawks' solid defensive effort with 13 total tackles and one sack.
Breakdown The Seahawks crawled back above the .500 mark and sent the slumping Chargers to their fifth loss in a row. Seattle kicker Rian Lindell bounced back from two fourth-quarter misses to hit the chip-shot game-winner in overtime. Doug Flutie continued to struggle, completing 19 of 33 for 195 yards and two interceptions, while his counterpart Matt Hasselbeck finished 19 of 35 for 202 yards. Shaun Alexander hasn't rushed for more than 100 yards since his 266-yard game against Oakland in Week 9, but he rushed 29 times for 87 yards and a touchdown to help hold off San Diego.

   Arizona 34 at Oakland, Calif.
   Oakland 31 (OT) Recap
Game Summary
Key Stat 826 -- Combined total yards by the Raiders (436) and Cardinals (390).
Player of
the Game
Bill Gramatica, K, Arizona: Hit 4-of-5 field-goal attempts, including the game-winning 36-yarder in overtime.
Breakdown The Cardinals shocked one of the league's best teams by moving the ball on the Raiders in the first half and jumping out to a 20-7 halftime lead. Jake Plummer completed 22 of 38 for 249 yards and one touchdown. Tim Brown and Jerry Rice combined for 12 catches for 160 yards and three touchdowns in a losing effort. David Boston caught six passes for 106 yards and one touchdown, giving him 72 catches for 1,171 yards and six touchdowns this season.

   Dallas 20 at Washington
   Washington 14 Recap
Game Summary
Key Stat 81 -- Rushing yards by the Redskins on 22 carries for a 3.7 average, while the Cowboys ran 44 times for 215 yards.
Player of
the Game
Emmitt Smith, RB, Dallas: Carried 25 times for 102 yards and one touchdown, his first touchdown and only the second 100-yard game this season with the other one also against the Redskins.
Breakdown Quincy Carter made a successful return to the starting lineup and ended the Redskins' five-game winning streak. Carter completed only 7 of 14 for 130 yards, 64 of which came on his scoring hookup with Raghib Ismail in the fourth quarter. Carter passed for one touchdown and one interception, but the Cowboys ran the ball so well, a strong passing game wasn't needed. Dallas' defense held Stephen Davis to 53 yards on 17 carries, his lowest total since gaining 39 against the Giants in Week 4.

   St. Louis 35 at Atlanta
   Atlanta 6 Recap
Game Summary
Key Stat 9.4 -- Average yards per play by the Rams (422 yards on 45 plays), compared to only 4.5 yards per play by the Falcons (320 yards on 71 plays).
Player of
the Game
Kurt Warner, QB, St. Louis: Looked like the Warner of old after his Monday night struggles against the Bucs, completing 17 of 23 for 342 yards and four touchdowns.
Breakdown The Falcons did a decent job of controlling Marshall Faulk on the ground, allowing him to rush for a modest 70 yards on 12 carries. But he tortured Atlanta in the passing game with six catches for 128 yards and three touchdowns, including a 65-yarder. The Rams limited Maurice Smith to 14 carries for 23 yards, but Michael Vick scrambled six times for 52 yards after replacing injury-prone Chris Chandler, who left in the second quarter with a sprained ankle.

   San Francisco 35 at San Francisco
   Buffalo 0 Recap
Game Summary
Key Stat 549 -- Rushing yards by Garrison Hearst in the past five games.
Player of
the Game
Jeff Garcia, QB, San Francisco: Completed 19 of 27 for 189 yards and two touchdowns.
Breakdown Alex Van Pelt completed 21 of 38 for 168 yards but was picked off four times. The 49ers also held the Bills to 29 rushing yards on 11 attempts, while running for 230 yards on 43 carries themselves. Ahmed Plummer led the 49ers' defensive efforts with seven tackles and two interceptions. Hearst rushed for 124 yards and one touchdown, his third 100-yard game in the past four.

   Green Bay 28 at Jacksonville, Fla.
   Jacksonville 21 Recap
Game Summary
Key Stat 21 -- Comeback victories engineered by Brett Favre in his Packers' career after rallying Green Bay on Monday night.
Player of
the Game
Brett Favre, QB, Green Bay: Threw for 362 yards and three TDs, then rushed for the game-winner with 1:30 left in the game.
Breakdown Favre kept the Packers one game behind the Bears in the NFC Central by improving to 7-0 as a starter when the score is tied after three quarters. Favre threw for 264 yards and two touchdowns in the second half to rally Green Bay from a 14-point deficit. Jacksonville lost a lead late in the fourth quarter for the fourth time in six games. The Jaguars had 13 penalties for 111 yards and committed four turnovers.

 
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