NFL - Late Manning heroics see Giants win thriller over Redskins

A 77-yard bomb from Eli Manning to Victor Cruz with 73 seconds left helped the New York Giants claim a 27-23 win over the Washington Redskins in a thrilling see-saw NFL battle, while Tennessee Titans also claimed a last-gasp win over Buffalo Bills on Sunday.

Reuters
NFL  - Late Manning heroics see Giants win thriller over Redskins
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Eli Manning of New York Giants in action against Washington Redskins on October 21 2012

The long connection to Cruz came just 19 seconds after Redskins signal caller Robert Griffin III hit Santana Moss with a 30-yard touchdown strike that had given Washington a 23-20 lead.

The victory improved the reigning Super Bowl champions' record to 5-2 and tightened their hold on first place in the National Football Conference (NFC) East Division.

The Redskins, despite a spectacular showing by their rookie quarterback, dropped to 3-4 after narrowly missing out on their opportunity to move into a tie for the division lead.

After a first half in which the teams traded points to enter intermission knotted at 13-13, they traded turnovers in the third and fourth quarters with the Giants just managing to come out on top.

The dynamic Griffin, known by the nickname RG3, produced three jaw-dropping plays late in the fourth quarter to put Washington into the lead.

Trailing 20-16 with less than three minutes left, Griffin converted on a fourth-and-10 from his own 23-yard line when he froze the Giants on a scramble before connecting with Logan Paulsen for 19 yards and a first down at the 42.

Griffin scrambled to his right on the next play for 24 yards and after one short pass completion, he hit Moss over the shoulder on the run for a go-ahead touchdown with 92 seconds left on the clock.

That proved to be enough time for Manning and the Giants to responded.

Gaining possession on the ensuing kickoff at their own 23, Manning threw an incompletion before lobbing a pass down the middle of the field corraled by Cruz, who ran away from defenders and into the end zone where he performed his signature salsa dance to celebrate the winning touchdown.

Matt Hasselbeck fired a 15-yard touchdown strike to Nate Washington with 63 seconds to play, lifting the Tennessee Titans to a wild 35-34 comeback win over the Buffalo Bills on Sunday.

Running backs Chris Johnson and Jamie Harper both rushed for a pair of scores as the surging Titans recorded back-to-back wins for the first time this season to jump back into the playoff chase in the AFC South with a record of 3-4.

Hasselbeck, making a third straight start in place of injured Jake Locker, completed 22-of-33 passes for 205 yards but saved his best for last when he found Washington cutting across the middle for the game winning score to stun the capacity crowd at Ralph Wilson Stadium.

Johnson rumbled for 195 yards on 18 carries, including an electrifying 83-yard run in the opening quarter, while both Harper's scores came on one-yard dives.

The Houston Texans took control of the AFC after handing the Baltimore Ravens a convincing 43-13 defeat while the Green Bay Packers offense fired again to win 30-20 at the St. Louis Rams.

The New England Patriots (4-3) took sole control of the AFC East after a 29-26 overtime win over divisional rivals, the New York Jets.

The New Orleans Saints won an exciting shootout in Tampa Bay 35-28.

The Texans (6-1) triumphed in the battle of the AFC's top two teams, bouncing back from their first loss of the season against the Packers last week.

Quarterback Matt Schaub threw for 256 yards and two touchdowns while Arian Foster ran in two scores against a Ravens defense without their injured inspirational linebacker Ray Lewis.

Ravens quarterback Joe Flacco threw two interceptions, one of which was run in from 52 yards by Johnathan Joseph.

Most things looked back in place for the Texans with their defense solid as they restricted the Ravens to 176 yards total offense.

After a slow start to the season, the Packers are now 4-3 and Aaron Rodgers is once again proving to be a game-winning quarterback, throwing for 342 yards and three touchdowns in St. Louis.

Randall Cobb collected two of Rodger's touchdown passes while Jordy Nelson scored one and put up 122 yards receiving as Green Bay put the game well beyond the Rams.

New England were 23-13 ahead after the third quarter but found themselves needing a Stephen Gostkowski field goal from 43 yards to take the game into overtime.

The Jets revival came via a Dustin Keller touchdown on a seven-yard pass from quarterback Mark Sanchez and then two field goals from Nick Folk.

Into overtime, the Patriots had to settle for another Gostkowski field goal on the opening possession but that proved enough as Sanchez was sacked and fumbled with Rob Ninkovich making the game-winning recovery.

In Tampa Bay Drew Brees threw for 377 yards and four touchdowns and Josh Freeman put up 420 yards and three touchdown passes while the Saints defense came up big in the fourth quarter.

All four of Brees's touchdowns and 313 yards of his passing came in the first half while Jonathan Vilma, who is appealing a one-year ban for his alleged role in the "Bounty" affair, made his season debut.

After making a 4-0 start to the season, the Arizona Cardinals have lost their last three games, the latest setback a 21-14 loss to the much-improved Minnesota (5-2).

Vikings running back Adrian Peterson opened the scoring with a 13-yard touchdown run and put up 153 yards on the ground but the game turned decisively for Minnesota when Harrison Smith brilliantly returned an interception for a 31-yard score in the third quarter.

The Dallas Cowboys (3-3) won 19-14 at the Carolina Panthers (1-5), thanks to two fourth quarter field goals from Dan Bailey, although the highlight was a superbly weighted 16-yard pass from Tony Room to Miles Austin in the third quarter.

Matt Hasselbeck fired a 15-yard touchdown strike to Nate Washington with 63 seconds to play, lifting the Tennessee Titans to a wild 35-34 comeback win over the Buffalo Bills.

Running backs Chris Johnson and Jamie Harper both rushed for a pair of scores as the surging Titans recorded back-to-back wins for the first time this season to jump back into the playoff chase in the AFC South with a record of 3-4.

The powerful Johnson rushed for 195 yards and two touchdowns.

The Pittsburgh Steelers overcame a slew of injuries to key players to earn a much-needed 24-17 victory over division rivals Cincinnati.

With defensive stalwart Troy Polamalu and running backs Rashard Mendenhall and Isaac Redman among those sitting out, Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger helped rally the team from a 14-3 deficit to secure the win and get to 3-3 for the season.

Pittsburgh had entered the game having got off to their worst start in six years, and having blown a lead to Tennessee in a loss just 10 days earlier.

Roethlisberger, who finished with 278 yards passing, found Heath Miller on a nine-yard score to tie the game at 14-14 just before half-time.

The teams traded field goals in the third quarter before Pittsburgh's Chris Rainey capped a drive with an 11-yard touchdown run in the fourth.

The Steelers had 167 rushing yards, including 122 from Jonathan Dwyer, to dominate possession with 15 more minutes with the ball than the Bengals.

Cincinnati could find little offense after a fast start that included a five-yard Cedric Peerman touchdown run and an eight-yard scoring catch from A.J. Green.

Bengals quarterback Andy Dalton threw for only 105 yards while Green was held to just the one catch.

The Baltimore Ravens lead the AFC North at 5-2, followed by the Steelers (3-3) and the Bengals (3-4), who have now lost three in a row.

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