As if we needed another reminder of the greatness of Tom Brady, the New England Patriots quarterbacks gave us some more Sunday.
Brady became the NFL’s all-time leader in career total passing yards, including playoff games, when he passed for 283 in the Patriots’ 27-13 victory against the New York Jets at MetLife Stadium. Brady needed 147 yards to pass Peyton Manning’s total of 79,279. Brady now has 79,416.
He also needed four touchdown passes to pass Manning’s record of 579. Brady had two, leaving him at 578.
In addition, Brady surpassed 3,000 yards in passing for the 16th season.
With five weeks left in the regular season, the races for the wild-card berths in the AFC and NFC are starting to take shape up.
Baltimore (6-5) and Indianapolis (6-5) in the AFC and Philadelphia (5-6) and Seattle (6-5) in the NFC picked up vital wins Sunday to stay in the hunt. Tennessee (5-5) plays at Houston today. The Eagles and Seahawks, along with Minnesota (6-4-1), Washington (6-5) and Dallas (6-5) are the contenders for the two NFC berths.
A capsule look at Sunday’s Week 12 games:
Game of the day
Broncos 24, Steelers 17
The scoop: Pittsburgh’s hopes for a first-round bye in the AFC playoffs took a hit while the Broncos stayed on the fringes of wild-card contention at 5-6. Case Keenum passed for two Denver touchdowns, including the tying score with 5:30 left in the third, then led his team on a 79-yard drive in 11 plays for the winning touchdown on a 2-yard run by Phillip Lindsay. Keenum completed four of five passes for 45 yards on the drive. Pittsburgh tied the game at 10 on a pass from kicker Chris Boswell to tackle Alejandro Villanueva on a fake-field goal from the 2-yard line on the last play of the first half.
Why the Broncos won: They intercepted Ben Roethlisberger twice, one leading to the tying touchdown at 17-17. They also kept the Steelers’ Antonio Brown from extending his TD reception streak to nine games.
Vikings 24, Packers 17
The scoop: Kirk Cousins passed for three touchdowns while the Minnesota defense kept Aaron Rodgers under control in a battle for second place in the NFC North. Dan Bailey’s 37-yard field goal late in the third quarter broke a 14-all tie. Then Cousins threw a 14-yard touchdown pass to Adam Thielen with 27 seconds left in the period for what turned out to be the difference. Mason Crosby kicked a 38-yard field goal with 2:20 left to make 10 it a one-touchdown margin. The Vikings recovered the onside kick, picked up a first down on Cousins’ 10-yard pass to Shelton Diggs and were able to run out the clock.
Why the Vikings won: They turned in a solid performance offensive and defensively. Cousins passed for 342 yards and Rodgers was limited to 198.
Ravens 34, Raiders 17
The scoop: Matthew Judon strip-sacked Derek Carr and Terrell Suggs returned the fumble 43 yards to put the game out of reach with 5:55 left in the game. Oakland went into the fourth quarter trailing 20-17. Lamar Jackson passed 8 yards to Michael Crabtree to make it a two-score game at 27-17.
Why the Ravens won: The Raiders went three-and-out in their two other possessions in the fourth quarter besides the sack-six return by Suggs.
Seahawks 30, Panthers 27
The scoop: Veteran Sebastian Janikowski kicked a 31-yard field goal on the last play to win it for Seattle, which now has defeated Green Bay and Carolina to keep its playoff hopes alive. It’s the fourth time the Seahawks have gone to Charlotte and won a close game since 2012. Russell Wilson passed for two Seattle touchdowns, the second a 35-yard connection with David Moore to tie the game with 3:26 left. Cam Newton passed for two touchdowns and Christian McCaffrey had 237 scrimmage yards and two touchdowns.
Why the Seahawks won: Graham Gano missed a 52-yard field goal try with 1:04 left, leaving Seattle in good field position at its own 42. Wilson directed a 45-yard drive to the winning kick.
Patriots 27, Jets 13
The scoop: Brady was the big news, but the New England running game mauled the Jets for 215 yards, including 133 by rookie Sony Michel. Rob Gronkowski was back and had a 34-yard touchdown pass from Brady. The other TD throw went to Julian Edelman. Brady had only one touchdown pass in his three previous games, a long drought for him.
Why the Patriots won: Ex-Bill Stephon Gilmore saved a score with his interception at the Patriots’ 2 late in the second quarter. New York was held to a field goal in the second half.
Chargers 45, Cardinals 10
The scoop: How to you spell perfection? Or near perfection?
How about R-I-V-E-R-S? Philip Rivers of the Chargers completed 28 of 29 passes for 259 yards and a 138.4 passer rating. His 25 consecutive completions tied the NFL record. He threw two TD passes to Mike Williams and another to Keenan Allen. Starting in the second quarter, the Chargers scored on six of seven series. The exception was a lost fumble.
Why the Chargers won: Arizona scored on its first possession on a 25-yard pass from Josh Rosen
to Larry Fitzgerald and got a field goal on the next. The Cards were shut out after that with just one first down in the second half.
Colts 27, Dolphins 24
The scoop: How many times has he done it? Adam Vinatieri kicked a 32-yard field goal on the last play to win it for the Colts. Indy’s fifth consecutive win moved Frank Reich’s team squarely into the fight for the final AFC wild-card playoff berth. Andrew Luck passed for three touchdowns, the eighth game in a row he has done so. His third to tight end Eric Ebron from 12 yards tied the game with 4:25 to play. Cameron Wake sacked Luck once, ending the Colts’ streak of five games without allowing a sack.
Why the Colts won: They pinned the Dolphins inside their 10 and were able to start their winning drive from the Indianapolis 42 with 2:38 to go.
Eagles 25, Giants 22
The scoop: New York led 19-3 after a 51-yard run by Saquon Barkley in the second quarter. After piling up 346 yards of offense in the first half, the Giants were held to 56 yards and three first downs in the second half. Barkley had 142 scrimmage yards, 101 rushing and 41 receiving.
Why the Eagles won: New York was in position to add to its 16-point lead before Eli Manning threw an interception 4 seconds before the half from the Eagles’ 27.
Off the bubble
Browns 35, Bengals 20
The scoop: Cleveland won its first road game since an Oct. 1, 2015, victory at Baltimore, building a 35-7 lead early in the third quarter at Paul Brown Stadium. Baker Mayfield passed for four touchdowns to four different receivers. He completed 17 of 21 passes for 245 yards and three touchdowns in the first half. Cincy played without WR A.J. Green and QB Andy Dalton left the game with a thumb injury in the third quarter. Rookie Jeff Driskel finished. It was Cleveland’s second win in a row.
Why the Browns won: Mayfield was not sacked and threw no interceptions. His longest completion was only 24 yards, however.
Dog of the day
Buccaneers 27, 49ers 9
The scoop: Restored as the starter, Jameis Winston passed for two touchdowns. The Bucs kept the Niners hemmed in their own end most of the game. Mike Evans of the Bucs caught six passes for 116 yards, giving him 1,073 receiving yards for the season, his fifth season of more than 1,000 to start his career.
Why the Bucs won: They had no turnovers and picked off 49ers QB Nicky Mullens twice in their own end, preventing a fourth-quarter comeback by San Francisco.
News wire services contributed to this report