Week 3: Studs & Duds
Maurice Jones-Drew: Jones-Drew almost single-handedly prevented the Jaguars from falling to 0-3. Jones-Drew had his first 100-yard rushing game of the season and scored three touchdowns to lead Jacksonville to a 31-24 victory over Houston. Jones-Drew scored the go-ahead touchdown on an 8-yard run early in the fourth quarter and finished with 119 yards rushing.
Brett Favre: The 40th game-winning drive of Favre's career ended in spectacular fashion. With time winding down, Favre's 32-yard TD pass to a leaping Greg Lewis in the back of the end zone gave Minnesota a 27-24 victory over the 49ers. Favre finished with 301 passing yards, the 56th 300-yard game of his career and first by a Vikings quarterback since Daunte Culpepper in 2005.
Randy Moss: After a four-catch, 24-yard performance in Week 2, Moss returned to his usual form in Week 3 as the Patriots' offense appeared to hit its stride. Moss had 10 catches for 116 yards in New England's 26-10 victory over the Falcons. It was the 61st 100-yard receiving game of Moss' career.
Peyton Manning: Short, precise routes. The deep ball. Manning had it all working on Sunday night. Manning completed 24 of 35 passes for a season-high 379 yards and four TDs as the Colts romped the Cardinals 31-10. Manning has thrown for more than 300 yards in all three games of 2009.
The Giants' running game: Conspicuously absent in the first two weeks, the Giants' running attack re-emerged on Sunday. Ahmad Bradshaw (14 carries, 104 yards) and Brandon Jacobs (26 carries, 92 yards, TD) spearheaded a Giants running attack that totaled 226 yards in a 24-0 victory over Tampa Bay. New York had the ball for 43 minutes, 38 seconds.
The Broncos' running game: The Broncos leaned heavily on their running game, specifically Correll Buckhalter and Knowshon Moreno, in a 23-3 victory over the Raiders. Buckhalter rushed for 108 yards on 14 carries; Moreno had 90 yards and one TD on 21 carries as Denver won its third straight.
David Harris: The Jets' defense didn't dominate like it did during the first two weeks, but it came up big in the late stages of Sunday's game against the Titans -- thanks largely to Harris. The third-year linebacker had an interception and a big sack on consecutive drives, helping New York seal a 24-17 victory.
Terrell Owens: Owens was held without a catch in Buffalo's 27-7 loss to the Saints, ending a 185-game streak with at least one catch that had been the second longest among active players. Owens has only five catches for 98 yards in his first three games as a member of the Bills.
The Bucs' offense: The Buccaneers were held to five first downs and 86 total yards in a 24-0 loss to the Giants. Tampa Bay, which had the ball for only 16:22, was 0-for-9 on third downs and didn't get a first down until late in the third quarter. Tampa Bay QB Byron Leftwich was replaced in the fourth quarter after going just 7-of-16 for 22 yards with one interception.
The Browns' QBs: After falling behind the Ravens 20-0, Cleveland coach Eric Mangini pulled quarterback Brady Quinn in favor of Derek Anderson. The switch did nothing to turn around the Browns' fortunes. Anderson, who lost his starting job to Quinn last year, was 11-of-19 for 92 yards and three interceptions in a 34-3 loss. Quinn was 6-of-8 for 34 yards and an interception.
The Texans' run defense: Jacksonville, led by Jones-Drew (see above), became the third straight team to run all over the Texans' NFL-worst run defense. Houston allowed 184 rushing yards in Sunday's 31-24 loss, after allowing 240 yards to the Titans in Week 2 and 190 to the Jets in Week 1.
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