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Dublin: 15 °C Sunday 18 August, 2019
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Falcons flying high as the Broncos fall at last

It was a first defeat of the season for Denver.

Tevin Coleman had himself a day against the Broncos.
Tevin Coleman had himself a day against the Broncos.

THE ATLANTA FALCONS won their fourth straight game as Matt Ryan and running back Tevin Coleman made light work of the Denver Broncos much vaunted defence last night.

Though Julio Jones was unable to repeat his 300-yard heroics of the previous week, the Falcons didn’t need him as Ryan took advantage of the fact the Broncos were double-teaming his star wideout and continuously found Coleman in space.

The running back caught four passes for 132 yards and a touchdown and the 23-16 scoreline hardly does Dan Quinn’s side justice as they completely dominated the game.

Broncos coach Gary Kubiak said they couldn’t contain the Falcons’ strong running game.

“They spread us out,” said Kubiak, who was admitted to a local hospital as a precautionary measure about an hour after the game because of flu-like symptoms.

The loss drops the Broncos to second in the AFC West after the Oakland Raiders continued their impressive start to the season with a 34-31 victory over the San Diego Chargers.

Head coach Jack Del Rio again decided to gamble late in the game, this time opting to go for it on fourth-and-two from the Chargers’ 21-yard line. Derek Carr — as he did most of the evening — fired his pass into a spot only his receiver could make a play and Michael Crabtree came down with the touchdown grab.

Seconds later, the Silver and Black gambled again and this time Carr hit Amari Cooper for the successful two-point conversion, giving the Raiders a 3-point cushion.

The Chargers, who again blew a second-half lead (this time of eight points), had a chance to level things up with a field goal late on but rookie punter Drew Kaser dropped the snap and they never got to try the kick as the Raiders held on to go 4-1 for the first time since 2002, a season they made the Super Bowl.

The Buffalo Bills gave the LA Rams their first home defeat since returning to the city of angels with Jeff Fisher’s side committing two turnovers that led directly to touchdowns while quarterback Tyrod Taylor and running back LeSean McCoy had big days for the Bills in a 30-19 win.

In the late game, the Green Bay Packers came away with an unconvincing 23-16 victory over New York Giants as both Aaron Rodgers and Eli Manning endured games to forget.

Manning barely completed 50% of his passes for the second straight week, finishing 18 of 35 for 199 yards, while Rodgers undid a strong start by eventually throwing multiple interceptions in a game for the first time since week five of last season.

However, a pair of touchdowns from Jordy Nelson and Davante Adams helped the Packers to victory, though they do have injury concerns regarding running back Eddie Lacy (ankle) after the game.

Sunday’s results

Tennessee Titans 30 Miami Dolphins 17
Pittsburgh Steelers 31 New York Jets 13
Minnesota Vikings 31 Houston Texans 13
Detroit Lions 24 Philadelphia Eagles 23
Indianapolis Colts 29 Chicago Bears 23
Washington 16 Baltimore Ravens 10
New England Patriots 33 Cleveland Browns 13
Atlanta Falcons 23 Denver Broncos 16
Dallas Cowboys 28 Cincinnati Bengals 14
Buffalo Bills 30 Los Angeles Rams 19
Oakland Raiders 34 San Diego Chargers 31
Green Bay Packers 23 New York Giants 16

Additional reporting via AFP.

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About the author:

Steve O'Rourke

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