NFL roundup: Bengals ground Ravens in finale
By The Associated Press
Published: Sunday, December 30, 2012, 9:44 p.m.
Updated: Monday, December 31, 2012
CINCINNATI — Carlos Dunlap returned an interception 14 yards for a fourth-quarter touchdown, and the Cincinnati Bengals defeated the Baltimore Ravens, 23-17, on Sunday in a matchup of AFC North teams bound for the playoffs.
The Ravens (10-6) had already clinched their second straight AFC North title, and they will open the playoffs at home against Indianapolis, which defeated Houston on Sunday.
The Bengals (10-6) will travel to Houston to play the Texans at 4:30 p.m. Saturday.
Broncos 38, Chiefs 3 — In Denver, Peyton Manning threw for 304 yards and three touchdowns to lift the Broncos into the No. 1 seed for the AFC playoffs.
Manning finished the season with 4,659 yards, 41 short of his career high. He finished with 37 touchdown passes.
Denver (13-3) won its 11th straight and leaped past Houston for the top seed.
The Chiefs gained only 119 yards and finished their season 2-14. They will get the top pick in April's draft.
49ers 27, Cardinals 13 — In San Francisco, Michael Crabtree caught touchdown passes of 49 and 7 yards, as the 49ers won a second straight NFC West title.
Colin Kaepernick threw for a career-best 276 yards and two TDs as the Niners (11-4-1) earned a No. 2 seed thanks to Green Bay's loss to Minnesota.
Former Steeler Brian Hoyer went 19 of 34 for 225 yards and a late TD toss in his first career NFL start as Arizona's fourth quarterback.
The Cardinals (5-11) lost for the 11th time in their last 12 games.
Redskins 28, Cowboys 18 — In Landover, Md., Robert Griffin III ran for a touchdown, and fellow rookie Alfred Morris rushed for 200 yards and three scores as the Redskins won their first division title in 13 years by beating Dallas.
Seahawks 20, Rams 13 — In Seattle, Russell Wilson tied Peyton Manning's record for most touchdown passes by a rookie with 26, and his 1-yard TD run with 1:39 left allowed Seattle to finish as the only unbeaten team at home.
Seattle (11-5) will be the No. 5 seed and face the NFC East winner — Washington or Dallas — next Sunday.
The Rams (7-8-1) sacked Wilson six times but couldn't come up with their first winning record since 2003.
Patriots 28, Dolphins 0 — In Foxborough, Mass., Tom Brady threw two touchdown passes and New England earned a playoff bye.
Seeded second in the AFC, the Patriots (12-4) have an extra week to savor the win and prepare for their postseason opener.
The Dolphins (7-9) finished with a losing record for the fourth straight season.
Buccaneers 22, Falcons 17 — In Atlanta, the Falcons couldn't follow through with their plan to gain momentum for the playoffs, as Josh Freeman threw a touchdown pass to Mike Williams and Doug Martin ran for 141 yards.
The Falcons (13-3) had little to play for as they already have home-field advantage through the NFC playoffs.
Bears 26, Lions 24 — In Detroit, Jay Cutler threw for 257 yards and a touchdown and helped seal the game with a late scramble.
Chicago (10-6) needed a Minnesota loss to Green Bay to reach the postseason but didn't get it.
Giants 42, Eagles 7 — In East Rutherford, N.J., Eli Manning threw a career-high five touchdown passes, but New York (9-7) failed to make the playoffs.
Bills 28, Jets 9 — In Orchard Park, N.Y., C.J. Spiller scored on a 66-yard catch and run in helping underachieving Buffalo, while Jets quarterback Mark Sanchez had two more turnovers.
Titans 38, Jaguars 20 — In Nashville, Tenn., Tennessee became the first NFL team with two players scoring twice on returns in closing out the season with two wins in its final three games.
Darius Reynaud scored on two punt returns, and rookie linebacker Zach Brown returned two interceptions for touchdowns.
Panthers 44, Saints 38 — In New Orelans, Drew Brees made more NFL history, but so did the Saints' porous defense in a loss to Carolina.
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