Atlanta Falcons 44, Green Bay Packers 21
Despite playing with two torn ligaments in his toe and one in his foot, Julio Jones was nothing short of spectacular. At one point in the third quarter, Jones accounted for 11 more yards of offense than the entire Packers team. Jones finished with nine grabs for 180 yards and a pair of touchdowns. Quarterback Matt Ryan finished with 392 yards, four passing touchdowns, one rushing score and no turnovers.
Extra points: Aaron Rodgers ended with 287 yards, three TDs and a pick, chipping in another 46 yards on the ground. Green Bay receiving options rounded out with Randall Cobb leading in yardage (6-82-0), Jordy Nelson scoring (6-67-1), and TE Jared Cook snaring seven passes for 78 yards and a score. Notable Atlanta contributors included wideout Mohamed Sanu (5-52-1), as well as RBs Devonta Freeman (84 total yards, TD) and Tevin Coleman (64 total yards, TD).
New England Patriots 36, Pittsburgh Steelers 17
Pittsburgh lost star running back Le’Veon Bell early in the first half, which obviously played a role, but the Steelers couldn’t stop Tom Brady’s aerial assault on the other side of the ball. TB12 dominated, connecting on a personal-best 384 yards worth of passes. He threw three touchdown passes on the day.
Wideout Chris Hogan owned the first half, going for two touchdowns on seven catches with more than seven minutes left in the second quarter. He finished with a franchise-record 180 yards on nine catches. WR Julian Edelman joined him in the century club, adding 118 yards and a TD of his own, on eight grabs.
Extra points: Ben Roethlisberger wasn’t given much help by his receivers; he finished with 314 yards, a touchdown and a pick. Steelers receiver Antonio Brown caught seven balls for 77 yards, and wideout Cobi Hamilton scored late in garbage time. Receiver Eli Rogers hauled in a 7-66-0 line, but he also lost a fumble. Pats running back LeGarrette Blount started slowly, but he bulled his way into the end zone late to salvage some value.