NFL ROUNDUP: Vick, Foles waging battle in Philly
Michael Vick was nearly flawless, Nick Foles looked sharp, and the Philadelphia Eagles’ quarterback competition remains close.
Vick and Foles each led touchdown drives in a 14-9 exhibition victory over Cam Newton and the Carolina Panthers on Thursday night.
Vick completed his first nine passes before throwing an interception on a desperation heave at the end of the second quarter after the Eagles (1-1) got the ball with 24 seconds left in the half. He finished 9 of 10 for 105 yards and also ran for 20.
Foles was 6 of 8 for 53 yards. He had 13 yards rushing, including a 7-yard TD scamper.
But Foles made a big mistake on his first series when he tried to throw the ball out of the end zone and had the pass picked off.
Newton had a so-so effort against a defense that was picked apart last week by New England’s Tom Brady. Newton was 8 of 17 for 112 yards. He played the first half and led the Panthers (1-1) to a pair of field goals.
RAVENS 27, FALCONS 23: Matt Ryan threw for 97 yards and a touchdown in four series, and Atlanta limited Baltimore’s starting offense to three first downs in the first half before the Ravens’ backups rallied.
Atlanta’s starters bounced back nicely from a 34-10 loss to Cincinnati one week earlier. Under Ryan’s direction, the Falcons pierced Baltimore for 11 first downs in 16ﾽ minutes and built a 20-7 lead at halftime.
It was 23-7 before Baltimore (2-0) scored 20 fourth-quarter points, including a 78-yard punt return by Asa Jackson with 6:18 remaining.
Ryan went 8 for 15 and threw an 8-yard touchdown pass to Julio Jones. Steven Jackson had 42 yards rushing against the defending Super Bowl champions.
Ravens quarterback Joe Flacco played the first half, completing 7 of 9 passes for 118 yards, including a 77-yard touchdown pass to Torrey Smith.
BEARS 33, CHARGERS 28: Jay Cutler looked shaky again and the defense made up for it, harassing Philip Rivers early on and setting the tone for Chicago’s victory over San Diego.
All eyes remain on the quarterback after the Bears made some big changes on offense in the offseason, hiring coach Marc Trestman to replace Lovie Smith and revising their line. Cutler played a quarter and completed 4 of 5 passes for 38 yards and a touchdown, but the only receiver he targeted was Brandon Marshall.
Matt Forte ran for 74 yards and a touchdown on eight attempts after carrying only once in a loss at Carolina in the opener. His 58-yard run around the left end set up the game’s first touchdown, a 5-yard strike from Cutler to Marshall.
Rivers got swarmed as soon as he stepped on the field, and the Chargers fell again after getting pounded by Seattle last week. He was 5 of 9 for 50 yards with an interception, and he lost a fumble on a sack by Shea McClellin, leading to a 3-yard run by Forte that made it 14-0 near the end of the first quarter.
BROWNS 24, LIONS 6: Brandon Weeden threw two touchdown passes to Jordan Cameron and perhaps ended any more discussion about a quarterback competition in Cleveland, leading the Browns past Detroit.
Weeden connected on TD passes of 10 and 5 yards to Cameron in the first half as the Browns (2-0) opened a 17-0 lead. Weeden finished 8 of 12 for 117 yards. In two weeks, he’s 18 of 25 for 229 yards and three TDs.
Browns running back Trent Richardson made his NFL exhibition debut and gained 33 yards on six carries, showing some elusiveness and power.
Matt Stafford completed 11 of 16 passes for 74 yards for the Lions (1-1), but was without superstar wide receiver Calvin Johnson, who sat out with a bruised knee.