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Football Titans, Raven, Viking all impress on NFL opening day

Lamar Jackson looked unstoppable from the start and tied a franchise record with five touchdown passes to help the Ravens humiliate the Dolphins and rookie coach Brian Flores.

Brynn Anderson/The Associated Press

TITANS 43, BROWNS 13

Marcus Mariota threw three touchdown passes – one a stunning 75-yarder to big back Derrick Henry – and the Browns fell flat on their faces in their highly anticipated opener. Titans tight end Delanie Walker had two TD catches in the fourth, and Tennessee’s defensive backs intercepted Baker Mayfield three times in the fourth period. Cameron Wake sacked Mayfield in the end zone for a safety in the first half, and the Titans dominated the undisciplined and perhaps overblown Browns, picked by some to contend for a Super Bowl title after adding Odell Beckham Jr. The Browns committed 18 penalties for 182 yards, a poor reflection on first-year coach Freddie Kitchens. Cleveland also had a player ejected for kicking a Titans defender. The Browns are 1-19-1 in openers since 1999.

BILLS 17, JETS 16

Josh Allen threw a 38-yard touchdown pass to John Brown with three minutes left, and the Bills rallied from a 16-point second-half deficit. After struggling to get much going on offence, the Bills finally were able to move the ball after Jets middle linebacker C.J. Mosley left with a groin injury. Buffalo also took advantage of kicking woes by the Jets as Kaare Vedvik, claimed last week off waivers from Minnesota, missed an extra point and a 45-yard field goal and ended up being the difference in the game. Le’Veon Bell caught a touchdown pass and had a two-point conversion in his Jets debut, and Jamison Crowder had 14 catches for 99 yards in his first game with his new team – but Adam Gase’s offence otherwise sputtered behind a line that gave Sam Darnold little time to throw. Allen finished 24 of 37 for 254 yards and a touchdown, and had one of his two interceptions returned 17 yards for a touchdown by Mosley. Brown caught seven passes for 123 yards.

RAVENS 59, DOLPHINS 10

Lamar Jackson looked unstoppable from the start and tied a franchise record with five touchdown passes to help the Ravens humiliate the Dolphins and rookie coach Brian Flores. The Ravens set a franchise record for points in the first half, and an NFL record for points in the first half of an opener, taking a 42-10 lead at the break. They broke franchise marks for points and total yards with 643. Baltimore gained 49 yards on the first play – a run by newcomer Mark Ingram – and hardly slowed down after that. Jackson’s first nine passes, all completions, went for 204 yards and four touchdowns. That included scores of 47 and 83 yards to first-round draft pick Marquise Brown in the first 11 minutes. Jackson’s other touchdown passes covered 33 yards to Willie Snead, five yards to rookie Miles Boykin and one yard to fullback Patrick Ricard.

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RAMS 30, PANTHERS 27

Malcolm Brown ran for a pair of scores and Jared Goff threw for 186 yards and a touchdown. Todd Gurley started and ran for 97 yards on 14 carries after being limited to eight yards rushing on five carries in the first half. Brown was the primary ball carrier for the better part of three quarters and finished with 53 yards on 11 carries. Christian McCaffrey led the Panthers with 209 yards from scrimmage and two touchdowns. It was a rough day for Cam Newton, playing in his first regular-season game since Dec. 17, when a lingering shoulder injury forced him to the sideline. Newton completed 25 of 38 passes for 239 yards.

EAGLES 32, WASHINGTON 27

Carson Wentz threw a pair of deep touchdown passes to DeSean Jackson, and the Eagles overcame a 17-point deficit. Wentz was 28 of 39 for 313 yards and three TDs in his first game since Week 14 after not taking a snap in the preseason. Jackson had eight catches for 154 yards. The Eagles racked up 436 total yards. Case Keenum threw for 380 yards and three TDs.

VIKINGS 28, FALCONS 12

Anthony Harris highlighted a thorough thrashing by Minnesota’s defence with two interceptions of Matt Ryan and a fumble recovery. Dalvin Cook carried a revived running attack, while Eric Wilson recovered his own blocked punt at the Atlanta 21-yard line on the first possession of the game, and the Vikings were well on their way to winning a fourth straight opener. Including the blocked punt, their first in five years, they turned all four Falcons turnovers into touchdowns. Ryan played more like a rookie than a 2016 league MVP beginning his 12th NFL season, unable to find his footing all afternoon in the face of a fierce pass rush that racked up four sacks.

SEAHAWKS 21, BENGALS 20

Russell Wilson hit Tyler Lockett for a 44-yard touchdown on the first play of the fourth quarter, and the Seattle Seahawks withstood a career day from Andy Dalton to beat the Cincinnati Bengals 21-20 on Sunday. Wilson and the Seahawks struggled offensively for most of the game, but got the big plays they needed on a day Dalton looked great running new coach Zac Taylor’s offence. Wilson was 14 of 20 for 196 yards and two scores.

CHARGERS 30, COLTS 24 (OT)

Austin Ekeler scored three touchdowns, including the winner on a seven-yard run with 5:01 remaining in overtime, to give the Los Angeles Chargers a 30-24 victory over the Indianapolis Colts on Sunday. The Chargers got the ball to start overtime and went 75 yards on eight plays. Ekeler, the Chargers’ lead back with Melvin Gordon holding out for a new contract, had 154 all-purpose yards on the day. He ran for 58 yards on 10 carries and caught six passes for 96 yards and two scores. Rivers, who made his 209th consecutive start to pass Peyton Manning for third longest among NFL QBs, completed 25 of 34 passes for 333 yards.

49ERS 31, BUCCANEERS 17

Richard Sherman and Ahkello Witherspoon returned two of a retooled San Francisco defence’s three interceptions of Jameis Winston for touchdowns and Robbie Gould kicked three field goals in the 49ers’s win. Jimmy Garoppolo threw for 166 yards and one touchdown in his first game in nearly a year. Winston threw for 194 yards to become Tampa Bay’s career passing leader.

LIONS 27, CARDINALS 27

Kyler Murray and the Cardinals nearly finished an improbable comeback in the rookie’s debut, rallying from an 18-point deficit in the fourth quarter to tie the game. The Cardinals had two chances to win in extra time and so did the Lions, but all they could do was trade field goals and settle for a 27-27 tie. Murray was 15 of 19 for 154 yards and two touchdowns during the fourth-quarter comeback. Overall, he was 29 of 54 or 308 yards, two touchdowns and an interception. It was a stunning collapse for Detroit, which looked totally in control until midway through the fourth period. The Lions took a 17-0 lead during the second quarter and had a 17-3 advantage at halftime.

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