Luck sets record in battle of the rookies
(Reuters) - Indianapolis quarterback Andrew Luck set a new single-game rookie passing record in the National Football League on Sunday while Peyton Manning and Aaron Rodgers both led their respective teams to impressive wins.
Luck threw 433 yards in his team's 23-20 win over the Miami Dolphins, eclipsing the previous rookie record of 422 set by Cam Newton last season.
The Pittsburgh Steelers upset the New York Giants with a 24-20 win at MetLife stadium, two fourth quarter touchdowns sealing a win for Mike Tomlin's team on a tough day for Eli Manning and the Giants offense.
Aaron Rodgers threw four touchdowns for the Green Bay Packers in their 31-17 win over the Arizona Cardinals, who suffered a fifth straight defeat.
Peyton Manning recovered after throwing two interceptions to lead the Denver Broncos to a 31-23 win at the Cincinnati Bengals while the Baltimore Ravens beat the Cleveland Browns 25-15 after giving up a 14-point lead.
Luck, last season's number one draft after graduating from Stanford, completed 30 of 48 passes as the Colts improved to 5-3.
After a Dolphins field goal, Luck got Indianapolis on the scoreboard via a route that was very well used by his predecessor Manning, a nine yard touchdown pass to receiver Reggie Wayne.
The Dolphins' own rookie quarterback Ryan Tannehill came into the league with much less fanfare than Luck but showed his quality with a 31 yard pass to Charles Clay for a touchdown.
After a Colts field goal, Miami got back in front thanks to a weaving 18 yard touchdown run from Reggie Bush.
In the third quarter, Luck hurled a 36 yard pass into the end-zone to T.Y Hilton, who made a magnificent catch despite double coverage to put the Colts back ahead.
The two teams exchanged field goals in the fourth quarter but Miami (4-4), blew a chance to win the game when Sean Smith dropped an attempted interception inside the Colts 30 yard line with less than four minutes left.
The victory was the third in a row for a Colts team who were watched by their head coach Chuck Pagano, who has been undergoing treatment for leukemia.
The Green Bay Packers (6-3) offense is firing again, they put up 176 yards on the ground while quarterback Rodgers threw for 218 yards and four touchdowns, including two to Randall Cobb.
Rodgers wrapped up a convincing performance with a 72 yard pass down the middle to Tom Crabtree.
The Giants managed just 182 yards of total offense against the Steelers but were in a strong position leading 20-10 at the end of the third quarter.
Mike Wallace's superb catch and pacy run for a 51-yard touchdown cut the Giants' lead to 20-17 just 55 seconds into the final quarter.
After squandering a sure three points with a fake field goal on a fourth-and-one from the New York three-yard line, Isaac Redman, the Steelers' third-string running back powered into the end-zone from a yard out to win the game.
Baltimore needed a 19 yard touchdown pass from quarterback Joe Flacco to Torrey Smith and then a 43 yard Justin Tucker field goal to get their 10 point win over the Browns whose 15 points all came from the feet of kicker Phil Dawson.
The Washington Redskins suffered a 13-21 home defeat to the Carolina Panthers and if you believe the 'Redskins Rule' that could be good news for Republican candidate Mitt Romney in Tuesday's presidential election
Since 1940, with just one exception, George W. Bush's win over John Kerry in 2004, a Redskins win in their final home game before a presidential vote has meant victory for the incumbent with a loss meaning a triumph for the challenger.
The Panthers ended a five-game losing streak with quarterback Newton throwing for 201 yards and a touchdown.
The Houston Texans moved to 7-1 with a 21-9 win at Buffalo, Arian Foster ran for 111 yards and quarterback Matt Schaub threw two touchdown passes.
Manning threw two interceptions that led to his Broncos (5-3 trailing 20-17 to the Bengals.
But for the 38th time in his career, Manning led a fourth quarter comeback with crucial drives ending with touchdown passes to tight-end Joel Dreessen and Eric Decker, the latter after an interception by Champ Bailey.
(Reporting By Simon Evans; Editing by Julian Linden)
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