Griffin Shines in Losing Effort

Although the New York Giants narrowly escaped with a 27-23 victory over the Washington Redskins, rookie quarterback Robert Griffin III put the league on notice.

In his first game against a division opponent, Griffin III completed 20 of 28 passes for 258 yards and two touchdowns while rushing for 89 yards. He orchestrated a late drive to put Washington in the lead with 1:32 to go, but that was plenty of time for Eli Manning.

Manning needed less than 20 seconds to connect with Victor Cruz on a game-winning 77-yard touchdown pass. Despite the loss, the Giants left feeling uneasy about Griffin III’s dazzling performance.

“I’m pretty mad at the football gods for putting him in the NFC East,” Giants’ defensive end Justin Tuck said in a press conference after the game.

Patriots 29, Jets 26

The New York Jets nearly pulled off an upset against their divisional foes with first place on the line, but they could not finish the job.

After Patriot Devin McCourty fumbled the ball during the kick return, the Jets controlled possession in a tie game with two minutes remaining. After rookie wide receiver Stephen Hill dropped a pass that would have awarded them a potential game-clinching first down, the Jets settled for a field goal with 1:37 left.

Down three, Tom Brady stormed down the field to set up a game-tying field goal by Stephen Gostkowski at the end of regulation. The Patriots scored another field goal in overtime and Mark Sanchez fumbled the ball away to seal the victory for New England.

Texans 43, Ravens 13

The Baltimore Ravens probably miss Ray Lewis.

In their first game playing without their veteran linebacker, Houston trounced Baltimore in a game between the only two AFC teams with winning records.

All the blame, however, cannot go to Baltimore’s injured defense. Joe Flacco completed less than half of his passes and threw two interceptions during the 30-point loss.

Bears 13, Lions 7

Remember when the Detroit Lions’ offense was good?

A year removed from surpassing the 5,000-yard plateau, Matthew Stafford has thrown five passing touchdowns in seven games. The Lions could not score on the Chicago Bears’ fierce defense, who have allowed a league low 13 points per game, until they avoided a shutout with a meaningless touchdown during the game’s final minute.

While Detroit has followed a breakout 2011 with a disappointing 2-4 start, the Bears are making amends for last year’s poor conclusion by jumping to a 5-1 start. Brandon Marshall caught a touchdown pass in his third consecutive game to keep Chicago on top of the NFC North.

Other Week 7 Highlights

After averaging 3.3 yards per carry through the first six games, Chris Johnson finally returned to form. Johnson ran for 195 yards and two touchdowns in the Tennessee Titans’ 35-34 victory over the Buffalo Bills.

Let’s never doubt Aaron Rodgers again. The reigning MVP completed 30 of 37 pass attempts for 343 yards and three touchdowns to lead the Green Bay Packers to a 30-20 win against the St. Louis Rams.

In a battle of unlikely 4-2 teams, the Minnesota Vikings defeated the Arizona Cardinals, 21-14, on the strength of 153 rushing yards from Adrian Peterson.

In addition to losing to the Oakland Raiders in overtime, the Jacksonville Jaguars also lost Maurice Jones-Drew after the star running back injured his left foot.