Date: October 3, 2011

Elias Says...

By Elias Sports Bureau, Inc.
Special to ESPN.com

NFL

DETROIT'S COMEBACK KIDS DO IT AGAIN

From Elias: The Lions overcame a 27-3 third-quarter deficit to post a 34-30 victory at Dallas. Detroit's win not only tied the NFL record for the largest margin erased in a road victory, it also came one week after a 26-23 win at Minnesota in which they trailed 20-0 at halftime. The Lions are the first team in NFL history to win consecutive games by erasing a deficit of 20 or more points in both. Note that the Bills came close last month, winning two straight games in which they trailed 21-3 to the Raiders and 21-0 to the Patriots.

There have been four games this season in which a team trailing by 20 or more points rallied to win, already tying the most such games in any season in NFL history.

Dallas Cowboys, Detroit Lions

RECORD-SETTING RETURNS IN BALTIMORE

From Elias: There were five return TDs in the Ravens' 34-17 victory over the Jets, the most in any game in NFL history. All five were scored within the first 37 minutes of the game.

Baltimore Ravens, New York Jets

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Sanchez

QB'S BATTLE INACCURACY AT BALTIMORE

From Elias: Joe Flacco completed only 10 of 31 passes in the Ravens' win (32%) and Mark Sanchez had an even lower completion percentage than Flacco (11-for-35, 31%). It was the first game in NFL history in which opposing quarterbacks both threw at least 30 passes and neither completed more than one-third of them.

Baltimore Ravens, New York Jets

CAM NEWTON'S VERSION OF THE 76ERS' FO'-FO'-FO'

From Elias: Cam Newton scored two touchdowns and passed for another in the Panthers' 34-29 loss at Chicago. Newton became the first player ever to score at least four TDs and throw four or more TD passes in his first four games in the NFL. (His totals after four games: 4 TDs and 5 TD passes). For the record, no player ever had three-and-three (TDs and TD passes) in his first three NFL games, but Bob Waterfield and Jake Delhomme had two-and-two in two.

Carolina Panthers

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Rodgers

RODGERS SETS PACKERS RECORD WITH 6 TD'S

From Elias: Aaron Rodgers accounted for six touchdowns, passing for four and running for two, in the Packers' 49-23 win over the Broncos. Prior to Sunday, no Packers player had produced more than five TDs in one game┐that is, scoring or passing for the TDs. Those who accounted for five TDs were Cecil Isbell (1942), Paul Hornung (1965), Don Horn (1969), Lynn Dickey (twice), and Brett Favre (three times).

Green Bay Packers

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Hester

HESTER'S 11TH PUNT-RETURN TD IS A RECORD-BREAKER

From Elias: Devin Hester's 69-yard punt return for a touchdown was the 11th of his career, breaking Eric Metcalf's NFL record. Jack Christiansen held at least a share of that record for nearly a half-century┐from 1951 until his mark was surpassed by Metcalf in 1997.

Hester has scored touchdowns on four of his last 29 punt returns, dating back to last October. Prior to that, he had gone 64 punt returns without a TD.

Chicago Bears

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Henery

ROOKIE HENERY'S MISSED KICKS ARE COSTLY

From Elias: Alex Henery kicked three field goals on Sunday, but it will be his two misses┐on attempts of 39 and 33 yards, both in the fourth quarter┐that will be remembered from the Eagles' 24-23 loss to the 49ers. Henery was the first player since the merger in 1970 to miss two field-goal attempts of less than 40 yards in the fourth quarter of a one-point loss. If there's any consolation for the Eagles' fourth-round pick, it would be that the last kicker to do so was also a rookie: Jan Stenerud, NFL Hall of Fame Class of 1991, who did so for the Chiefs in 1967.

Philadelphia Eagles

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Manning

MANNING'S LATE TD PASSES RALLY GIANTS TO VICTORY

From Elias: Eli Manning threw touchdown passes of 2 yards to Jake Ballard and 29 yards to Hakeem Nicks 58 seconds apart late in the fourth quarter to give the Giants a 31-27 win at Arizona. During the expansion era, only five other players threw a pair of TD passes within 60 seconds in the last 5 minutes of the fourth quarter, the second of which was a game-winner: Johnny Unitas (1967), Danny White (1981), Randall Cunningham (1989), A.J. Feeley (2002), and Philip Rivers (2008).

New York Giants

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Dalton

DALTON MATCHES THE THROWIN' SAMOAN

From Elias: Andy Dalton hasn't played at Cam Newton's level, but he mimicked the Panthers' QB with a touchdown pass and a TD run in the Bengals' 23-20 win over the Bills. Dalton was the first Cincinnati rookie to pass and run for a TD in the same game since Jack Thompson, the Throwin' Samoan, did it in November 1979.

Cincinnati Bengals

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Foster

FOSTER CARRIES A LOAD IN HOUSTON'S WIN

From Elias: Arian Foster gained 155 yards on 30 carries in the Texans' 17-10 win over the Steelers. Foster was the first player to average at least 5.0 yards on 30 or more carries in one game this season. He was also the last player to do so last season, with 180 yards on 31 carries in Houston's 2010 season finale.

Houston Texans

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Brady

IS TOM BRADY THE NEW MR. OCTOBER?

From Elias: Tom Brady threw a pair of touchdown passes in the Patriots' 31-19 win over the Raiders. Brady has passed for at least one touchdown in the last 26 games he has played during the month of October. That's the second-longest such streak in NFL history, behind Peyton Manning's streak of 39 consecutive October games with a TD pass.

Of greater significance, Brady tied Manning's record of 13 consecutive games with two or more TD passes, a mark that Manning set in 2004.

New England Patriots, Oakland Raiders

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Hasselbeck

HASSELBECK'S FAST START IN 1ST SEASON IN TENNESSEE

From Elias: Matt Hasselbeck threw three first-half touchdown passes and the Titans cruised to a 31-13 win at Cleveland. Hasselbeck's total of eight TD passes this season is the highest over his first four games in any of his 11 seasons as a starting NFL quarterback.

Tennessee Titans

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Gabbert

GABBERT OFF THE MARK IN LOSS TO SAINTS

From Elias: Blaine Gabbert completed only 16 of 42 passes in the Jaguars' 23-10 loss to the Saints. Gabbert's total of 26 incompletions and interceptions was the highest in one game by a rookie since Bruce Gradkowski of the Bucs went 20-for-48 in a loss to the Giants five years ago.

Jacksonville Jaguars

REDSKINS TAKE 17-0 LEAD IN WIN OVER RAMS

From Elias: The Redskins built a 17-0 lead through three quarters and held on for a 17-10 win at St. Louis. It was the first time in four seasons that Washington put at least 17 points on the board before its opponent scored. The last time the Skins did so was in a 32-21 victory at Minnesota in 2007, after they took a 25-0 lead.

St. Louis Rams, Washington Redskins

LIONS & TIGERS RULE THE ROOST

From Elias: To segue from NFL to MLB, we'll note that Sunday was only the third time that the Tigers won a postseason game on the same day that the Lions posted a win. It previously happened in 1934, when there were more runs scored in Game 5 of the World Series (3-1) than in the Lions' win at Green Bay (3-0); and in 1984, when Billy Sims recorded the next-to-last 100-yard game of his NFL career while the Tigers clinched the World Series against the Padres.

Detroit Tigers, Detroit Lions

MLB

LIONS & TIGERS RULE THE ROOST

From Elias: To segue from NFL to MLB, we'll note that Sunday was only the third time that the Tigers won a postseason game on the same day that the Lions posted a win. It previously happened in 1934, when there were more runs scored in Game 5 of the World Series (3-1) than in the Lions' win at Green Bay (3-0); and in 1984, when Billy Sims recorded the next-to-last 100-yard game of his NFL career while the Tigers clinched the World Series against the Padres.

Detroit Tigers, Detroit Lions

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Cabrera

CHAMPIONS GO BATTY VS. YANKEES

From Elias: Miguel Cabrera went 3-for-4 with a home run and three RBIs in the Tigers' 5-3 win over the Yankees, as league batting champions continued to torment the Yankees in postseason play. This is the third consecutive season in which the Yankees have faced the AL batting champion in the playoffs. The batting champs have 19 hits in 49 at-bats (.388), with five home runs and 11 RBIs in their last 13 playoff games against the Yankees. That includes Cabrera, Josh Hamilton (2010), Joe Mauer (2009), and Bill Mueller (2003).

Detroit Tigers

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Carpenter

A STUNNINGLY SHAKY START FOR CARPENTER

From Elias: Chris Carpenter, starting the three days' rest for the first time in his career, got off to a rocky start, allowing three runs in the first inning of the Cardinals' 5-4 win at Philadelphia. Carpenter had not allowed three or more runs in the first inning of any of his last 174 regular-season starts, dating back to August 2004. Yes, you read that right. In fact, Carpenter's streak of holding the opposing team to two runs or less in the first inning is the longest by far in the live-ball era. The runner-up was a 152-game streak by Juan Marichal from 1962 to 1967.

And in case you were wondering, there was only one longer streak of that type prior to 1920. Hall of Famer Ed Walsh didn't allow a three-or-more-run first inning over a span of 196 starts from 1906 to 1911.

St. Louis Cardinals

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Lee

LEE BLOWS 4-RUN LEAD

From Elias: While not as rare as Carpenter's struggles in the first inning, Cliff Lee's inability to hold the 4-0 lead to which he was staked was also noteworthy. Lee was the losing pitcher on Sunday night; he has a 72-1 career regular-season record when given a lead of four or more runs.

Philadelphia Phillies

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Hudson

HUDSON'S OUTING CUT SHORT

From Elias: Daniel Hudson was removed in the sixth inning of Sunday's game, after throwing only 93 pitches. Hudson threw at least 95 pitches in 31 of his 33 starts this season (94%), the highest percentage in the National League.

Arizona Diamondbacks


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