What was supposed to be the NFL's most closely contested division race may be turning into a blowout for the New York Giants.
The Giants (5-2) padded their lead in the NFC East by winning their fourth in a row with a dominating defensive performance against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, 17-3.
Meanwhile, the Philadelphia Eagles (4-4) were losing their third straight, 13-6, to the Jacksonville Jaguars and fell to third place in the division behind Dallas. The Cowboys (4-3) scored an impressive 35-14 win at Carolina Sunday night. Washington (2-5), already three games behind the Giants in the loss column, had a bye.
In the AFC East, the New York Jets (4-4) fell three games behind New England (5-1) by losing a controversial game in Cleveland, 20-13. The Patriots play at Minnesota tonight.
While the races in the East were loosening, others in the NFL were tightening.
Denver's 34-31 home loss to Indianapolis dropped the Broncos into a tie with San Diego for first in the AFC West at 5-2.
The Saints' 35-22 home loss to the Baltimore Ravens dropped New Orleans into a first-place tie with the Atlanta Falcons at 5-2 in the NFC South.
Chiefs 35, Seahawks 28
Closing line: Chiefs (-4).
The scoop: Goofs by the Chiefs made it interesting against a Seattle team that played without quarterback Matt Hasselbeck and MVP running back Shaun Alexander. Kansas City led, 27-14, late in the third quarter and seemed to have things in hand. Then holder Dustin Colquitt mishandled the snap on a field-goal attempt and tried an ill-advised pass that was returned 61 yards by Seattle's Kelly Herndon to make it 27-21. Moments later, Seneca Wallace, filling in for Hasselbeck, hit Darrell Jackson with a 49-yard TD pass to give Seattle a 28-27 lead. K.C. cornerback Ty Law fell down on the Jackson TD after dropping a sure interception a few plays previous. . . . The Chiefs came back to win it with an 80-yard drive, capped by Larry Johnson's 3-yard run. Johnson ran for three touchdowns and caught a pass for a fourth.
Play of the game: Herndon's return of Colquitt's bobble.
Quote: "We just made some silly mistakes, including myself. When you've got a chance to jump on people, you've got to do it. And we didn't." -- Chiefs quarterback Damon Huard.
Next: Chiefs at Rams, Seahawks home to Raiders next Monday night.
Jaguars 13, Eagles 6
Closing line: Eagles (-7 1/2 ).
The scoop: The Eagles had a dropped pass, a penalty and a sack on their first three plays. Things did not get much better after that. With David Garrard at quarterback, the Jaguars employed a conservative game plan on a gusty day and controlled the ball for 36:51. The Eagles, who were averaging a league-best 417 yards a game, managed only 227 and quarterback Donovan McNabb was sacked four times and had at least five passes dropped.
Play of the game: Garrard's fourth-down scramble for 13 yards kept the Jaguars' first drive going. Fred Taylor ran up the middle from 15 yards for a 7-0 lead, and the Eagles never caught up.
Quote: "Starting from the first play, I knew it was going to be a smash-mouth day." -- Taylor.
Next: Jaguars home to Titans, Eagles have a bye.
Raiders 20, Steelers 13
Closing line: Steelers (-9 1/2 ).
The scoop: Don't look now, but only Miami, Arizona and Detroit are worse than the defending Super Bowl champion Steelers (2-5). . . . The Raiders (2-5) managed only 98 total yards and were 1 for 11 on third down but won thanks to a 24-yard interception return for a first-quarter touchdown by Nnamdi Asomugha and a 100-yard interception by Chris Carr to make it 20-6 in the fourth quarter. . . . The Raiders broke up a fourth-down Ben Roethlisberger pass from the Oakland 3 with 1:46 left. Pittsburgh got the ball back and had reached the Oakland 3 when time ran out. . . . Roethlisberger was intercepted four times.
Play of the game: Carr's 100-yard interception return on a third-and-goal from the Raiders' 7 with 9:49 left in the game.
Next: Raiders at Seahawks next Monday night, Steelers home to Broncos.
Packers 31, Cardinals 14
Closing line: Packers (-4).
The scoop: Brett Favre had his first chance in a long time to do the "Lambeau Leap" into the end zone stands after a touchdown, and Green Bay (3-4) won its first home game under first-year coach Mike McCarthy. . . . The Packers sacked Cardinals quarterback Matt Leinart four times and held him to 61 yards passing in the first half as they built a 21-7 lead after two periods.
Play of the game: Favre froze a defender with a pump fake and dived into the end zone for his first rushing touchdown since Dec. 3, 2001, in Jacksonville.
Quote: "This is my 14th year doing this. You think I want to go 1-7? It's just frustrating and wearing on everybody." -- Cardinals defensive back Robert Griffith.
Next: Packers at Bills, Cardinals have a bye.
Titans 28, Texans 22
Closing line: Titans (-3).
The scoop: Rookie quarterback Vince Young ran 20 yards for the Titans' first score and later hit Bobby Wade for a 20-yard touchdown pass. . . . Tennessee won its second in a row for the first time since the 2003 season. . . . Houston quarterback David Carr was benched after he was sacked four times and turned the ball over three times. His replacement, Sage Rosenfels, passed for three scores.
Quote: "It means something to me, my family and all the fans back home in Houston, but at the same time, it means the most here." -- Young on the home victory.
Buffalo Buzz: Ex-Dolphin Rosenfels threw the winning pass against the Bills in Miami's 24-23 comeback victory last December.
Next: Titans at Jacksonville, Texans at Giants.
Ravens 35, Saints 22
Closing line: Saints (-1 1/2 ).
The scoop: Baltimore scored 21 points in the second quarter for a 28-7 halftime lead, and the Saints were in catch-up mode the rest of the way. New Orleans gained 403 yards, 383 on the passing of Drew Brees, but turned the ball over on four interceptions and a fumble. Two of the INTs were returned for scores by Ronnie Prude and Dawan Landry, both Louisiana natives. . . . Rookie Reggie Bush of the Saints left the game with a left ankle injury. He ran for 16 yards on five carries, caught four passes for 5 yards, and his attempt at a halfback option pass was intercepted.
Play of the game: Steve McNair scored untouched on a 5-yard quarterback draw to get the Ravens started.
Quote: "I particularly liked the play calls of the two interceptions for touchdowns." -- Ravens coach Brian Billick, who took over the play-calling.
Next: Ravens home to Bengals, Saints at Buccaneers.
Giants 17, Buccaneers 3
Closing line: Giants (-9).
The scoop: The Giants game-planned for the cold and wind at Giants Stadium and controlled the clock (35:38 to 24:22), running 35 times for 108 yards. . . . The New York defense was missing three starters and lost linebacker Brandon Short (quadriceps) but limited the Bucs to 174 yards and 10 first downs. Tampa Bay was only 2 of 16 on third down.
Quote: "We knew we had a good team when we were 1-2. We just had to put the pieces together." -- Giants defensive tackle Fred Robbins.
Browns 20, N.Y. Jets 13
Closing line: Browns (-2).
The scoop: Under new offensive coordinator Jeff Davidson, Cleveland outgained the Jets, 267-193. . . . Justin Miller returned a kickoff 99 yards for the only New York touchdown.
Play of the game: A potential one-handed tying touchdown catch by New York tight end Chris Baker was ruled out of bounds, saving the Browns' second victory of the season. The officials huddled before ruling on the play. The judgment call was not reviewable.
Next: Browns at Chargers, Jets have a bye.
Chargers 38, Rams 24
Closing line: Chargers (-9 1/2 ).
The scoop: LaDainian Tomlinson ran for two first-quarter touchdowns in his 183-yard day, and the Chargers never trailed. Tomlinson also scored on a 25-yard pass. . . . San Diego outgained the Rams, 419-412, in what turned into an offensive free-for-all. . . . Chargers' Shawne Merriman had three sacks of Marc Bulger.
Play of the game: Marlon McCree of the Chargers returned a Rams fumble 79 yards to make it 21-7.
Next: Chargers home to Browns, Rams home to Chiefs.
>Dog of the day
Bears 41, 49ers 10
Closing line: Bears (-16).
The scoop: Wearing their orange throwback jerseys, Da Bears forced two fumbles and Brian Urlacher made a one-handed, highlight-reel interception on the way to a 24-point first quarter, a team record for points in the opening quarter. They led, 41-0, at the half, tying a franchise mark set in 1948.
Quote: "At halftime, you just think to yourself, 'How did it get out of control so fast?' " -- 49ers lineman Bryant Young.
Next: Bears home to Dolphins, 49ers home to Vikings.
Compiled from News wire services and reports.