Print and Go Back ESPN.com: NFL [Print without images]

Sunday, October 23, 2011
Week 7: Arian Foster lifts Texans

ESPN.com

STUDS

Foster
Foster

Arian Foster

Running back, Houston Texans

A big game by Foster helped the Texans take over first place in the AFC South. Foster scored three touchdowns -- two rushing and one receiving (a 78-yarder) -- in Houston's 41-7 rout of Tennessee. Foster rushed for 115 yards on 25 carries and caught five passes for 119 yards.


Murray
Murray

DeMarco Murray

Running back, Dallas Cowboys

Murray had a 91-yard scoring burst with 9:33 remaining in the first quarter. Turns out the rookie running back was only getting started. Murray rushed for an eye-popping 253 yards on 25 carries in the Cowboys' 34-7 victory over St. Louis. Murray's previous single-game rushing high was 32 yards in Week 6.


Brees
Brees

Drew Brees

Quarterback, New Orleans Saints

You won't see many quarterbacking performances better than what Brees delivered on Sunday night. Brees carved up the Colts' defense, completing 31 of 35 passes for 325 yards and five TDs as the Saints set a franchise record for points and victory margin in a 62-7 laugher.


Burress
Burress

Plaxico Burress

Wide receiver, New York Jets

Burress made the most of his limited touches against San Diego. Burress caught only four passes, but three went for TDs in the Jets' 27-21 comeback victory. Burress' third TD reception, a 3-yarder with 8:41 remaining, proved to be the game-winner. It was his second career three-TD game.


Forte
Forte

Matt Forte

Running back, Chicago Bears

Forte's tough running paved the way for Chicago's second straight victory. Forte rushed for 145 yards and a TD as the Bears beat Tampa Bay 24-18 in London. Forte's 32-yard first-quarter score gave the Bears an early lead they would never relinquish.


Newton
Newton

Cam Newton

Quarterback, Carolina Panthers

Newton threw for 256 yards and ran for 59 more in Carolina's 33-20 victory over the Redskins. Newton's 16-yard TD run in the third quarter was his seventh of the season, tying a record for most rushing TDs by a rookie quarterback since the 1970 NFL-AFL merger. Newton also threw a 2-yard TD pass to Brandon LaFell in the fourth quarter.


Smith
Smith

Steve Smith

Wide receiver, Carolina Panthers

Smith also had a significant role in Carolina's victory, catching seven passes for 143 yards. Newton twice found Smith on a 10-play, 80-yard touchdown drive that pushed the Panthers' lead to 23-13 in the third quarter. On the Panthers' next drive, Newton found Smith downfield again for a 36-yard gain that Smith hauled in at the 1-yard line. Three plays later, Carolina scored to make it 30-13.


Chiefs

The Chiefs' defense

The Chiefs' D made life miserable for Oakland's quarterbacks (see below). Kansas City intercepted six passes, two of which were returned for TDs, and limited the Raiders to 15 completions in a 28-0 victory. Brandon Flowers had two of the Chiefs' interceptions, including a 58-yard pick-six in the fourth quarter. Kendrick Lewis returned a Kyle Boller interception 59 yards for a score on the Raiders' opening drive.


Rodgers
Rodgers

Aaron Rodgers

Quarterback, Green Bay Packers

Another week, another outstanding performance for Rodgers. The MVP front-runner completed 24 of 30 passes for 335 yards and three TDs without an interception in the Packers' 33-27 victory at Minnesota.


Roethlisberger
Roethlisberger

Ben Roethlisberger

Quarterback, Pittsburgh Steelers

Roethlisberger threw for 361 yards and three TDs, including a 95-yarder to Mike Wallace (the longest pass play in Steelers history), to lead Pittsburgh to a 32-20 victory at Arizona. When the Cardinals cut the lead to 17-14 in the third quarter, Roethlisberger responded by completing 6 of 7 passes for 80 yards. He finished off the drive by eluding an unblocked defender and throwing a 4-yard touchdown.




DUDS

Johnson
Johnson

Chris Johnson

Running back, Tennessee Titans

Johnson's struggles continued in Week 7. Johnson rushed for only 18 yards on 10 carries (1.8-yard average) in the Titans' loss and was booed repeatedly in the process. His longest run was 3 yards.


Raiders

The Raiders' quarterbacks

The Raiders elected to start Boller over new addition Carson Palmer against Kansas City. As it turned out, it probably didn't matter which QB got the start. Boller threw three interceptions, including an early pick-six that set the tone in Oakland's loss. Boller completed seven of 14 passes for 61 yards before being benched for Palmer, who also threw three interceptions and actually had a lower passer rating than Boller (17.3 to 22.3).


Freeman
Freeman

Josh Freeman

Quarterback, Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Jet lag in London? Maybe. Freeman and the Bucs' offense couldn't recover from their slow start against Chicago. Freeman threw a season-high four interceptions as the Bucs lost for the second time in three years at Wembley Stadium.


Seahawks

The Seahawks' offense

The Seahawks generated only 137 yards of offense in a 6-3 loss at Cleveland. Filling in for injured starter Tarvaris Jackson, Seattle QB Charlie Whitehurst failed to impress. He was held to 92 yards on 12-of-30 passing.