Here is the round-up of the NFC South games during Week Four of the 2020 NFL Season:
Bridgewater, Panthers fix red-zone woes, top Cardinals 31-21
There was a time when doctors didn’t know if Teddy Bridgewater would walk normally again, let alone play play quarterback in the NFL.
You’d never know it watching Bridgewater break the pocket, juke two defenders and race 18 yards to the end zone on Sunday, helping the Carolina Panthers defeat the Arizona Cardinals 31-21 for their second straight win.
Bridgewater also threw for 276 yards and two scores as the Panthers solved their red-zone issues from a week ago by scoring TDs on their first four trips inside the Arizona 20-yard line.
Bridgewater scored his first rushing touchdown since before a devastating knee injury in the summer of 2016; he tore his ACL and dislocated his kneecap with the Minnesota Vikings and had to be rushed to the hospital to prevent permanent nerve damage. On Sunday, the 27-year-old Bridgewater even looked elusive at times.
“That was awesome — unexpected, but awesome,” Panthers center Matt Paradis said of Bridgewater’s TD run.
Bridgewater said he never thought of the past injury.
“I was just out there trying to score touchdowns in the red zone,” the quarterback said.
After COVID scare and little sleep, Saints rally past Lions
Drew Brees threw two touchdown passes to Tre’Quan Smith 2:19 apart in the second quarter, helping the short-handed Saints rally to beat the Lions 35-29.
“Everybody just persevered and we found a way to get a big win,” Brees said.
New Orleans (2-2) played after a short night of sleep, coming off its first two-game losing streak in three years and started the game without six injured starters.
Saints fullback Michael Burton had a false positive test for the coronavirus Saturday, leading to another round of tests for players and staff overnight in the Motor City.
“Just a lot of emotions going on because you never want to be a distraction,” Burton said. “They had to wake up other guys and test them.”
New Orleans was the latest team to come back against Detroit, scoring 35 straight points from late in the first period to midway through the third to take control.
“I’m proud of how we got ready to play despite some of the challenges,” Saints coach Sean Payton said.
Matthew Stafford ended the Saints’ run with a TD pass to T.J. Hockenson late in the third quarter. The Lions pulled within six points with 3:36 left in the fourth on Adrian Peterson’s 5-yard run and Hockenson’s 2-point conversion catch.
The Saints took a step toward sealing the win with Brees converting a third-and-5 from his 27 with a 19-yard pass to Smith.
“That was probably the biggest play of the day,” said Smith, the primary receiver on the play. “We really needed a first down. Drew trusted me and I came down with it.”
And to dash any comeback hopes Detroit had, Alvin Kamara ran for 5 yards on a third-and-3 run from midfield.
Brady throws for 5 TDs, Bucs rally to beat Chargers 38-31
Tom Brady is introducing the Tampa Bay Buccaneers to a new way of winning.
The six-time Super Bowl champion led a come-from-behind victory for the first time since joining his new team, throwing for 369 yards and five touchdowns to help the Bucs rally from a 17-point deficit to beat the Los Angeles Chargers 38-31 on Sunday.
It’s the 46th time Brady has delivered a winning drive in the fourth-quarter or overtime of a regular-season game — fourth on the NFL behind Peyton Manning (54), Drew Brees (50) and Dan Marino (47). The 43-year-old quarterback has overcome a deficit of 10 or more points to win a league-best 34 times, including postseason.
“Tom, he’s never behind in his mind. We can always make plays to win games,” coach Bruce Arians said.
“How can you not believe in him? He’s the greatest to ever do it,” receiver Scotty Miller said. “We just go in there and follow his lead.”
Five players — Miller, Mike Evans, O.J. Howard, Cameron Brate and rookie Ke’Shawn Vaughn — caught scoring passes from Brady, who threw four of them after the Bucs fell behind 24-7 in the second quarter.
“We knew we had played poorly. It was just a show of character. I can honestly say that if this had been last year, we would have gotten beat by 20,” Arians said. “This team has a ton of character and playmakers and we started making plays. You can see that when we don’t beat ourselves, we’re going to be a tough team to beat.”
Rookie Justin Herbert completed 20 of 25 passes for 290 yards and three touchdowns for the Chargers (1-3), who’ve lost three straight with the sixth overall pick in this year’s draft playing earlier than expected because of injuries to Tyrod Taylor.
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers travel to face the Chicago Bears for Thursday Night Football. The Bears were beaten by the Indianapolis Colts 19-11 at Soldier Field. Kickoff is 8:20 pm. Meanwhile, the Carolina Panthers will travel to Atlanta to face the Falcons, next Sunday at 1:00 pm.