By JOHN DORN
It's safe to say that, over his career, Eli Manning has been the beneficiary of stellar defenses and talented receiving cores. This year, though, he's been stripped of both of those. The one constant, though: Consistently brilliant fourth quarter play. And he did it again last night.
After the Giants fell behind in the final minutes, Manning took control of the offense -- sans Odell Beckham, who was sidelined with a hamstring injury until the final few plays. In 1:24, the Giants drove 82 yards, courtesy of three Shane Vereen receptions, an Eli scramble and a few yellow flags. By the time Manning flung a 12-yard pass to Larry Donnell in the end zone with 12 seconds left, San Francisco was out of luck. Eli had done it again.
The fourth quarter comeback drive was Manning's 27th, breaking his tie with Warren Moon for 10th all-time. More importantly, at 3-2, New York has taken sole possession of first place in the NFC East.
See photos from Sunday night's Giants-49ers game:
Giants 30, 49ers 27
Around the League
CIN 27, SEA 24
Is it time to panic yet in Seattle? Seahawks fans are surely trying to keep last year's 3-3 start in mind -- in a season that ended in an NFC championship. But their 2-3 start to 2015 isn't exactly promising. While it's tough to gather a whole lot, definitively, off five games, the Bengals are among the undefeated teams in the NFL -- all but guaranteeing them an eventual playoff berth.
ATL 25, WSH 19
Another team among the undefeateds is Atlanta, which moved to 5-0 after an overtime win against Washington. In a game where the Falcons' leading receiver was none other than Jacob Tamme. Atlanta was able to pull one out in overtime, thanks to a Robert Alford pick-six in overtime.
TB 38, JAC 31
The last time the Buccaneers won a game at home? Nov. 17, 2013. Jameis Winston finally treated the Tampa Bay fans to a victory on Sunday, going for 209 yards and a touchdown on 19 attempts. Doug Martin ran for 123 yards while Charles Sims combined for 136 all-purpose yards, outdoing Blake Bortles' four-touchdown day.
PHI 39, NO 17
The New Orleans Saints may not be the powerhouse of years past, but the Eagles will take any good news they can get at this point. DeMarco Murray finally amassed 20 carries, going for 83 yards, and Sam Bradford put up 333 yards with a pair of scores.
GB 24, STL 10
It seemed as if there would never be another one again. But finally, an Aaron Rodgers interception at Lambeau Field occurred. Twice! No matter, though. Despite Todd Gurley's 159 rushing yards, the Packers won without a whole lot of resistance.
NE 30, DAL 6
It was a convincing and thorough victory, and it will probably spell the end of the Brandon Weeden era in Dallas. Weeden spread 188 yards over 39 pass attempts without a touchdown, possibly ending his career as an NFL starter. Tom Brady completed 20 of his 27 passes for 275 yards and two scores, as the Cowboys will probably turn to Matt Cassel to right their wrongs in Tony Romo's absence.
Other NFL Scores
DEN 16, OAK 10
BUF 14, TEN 13
ARI 42, DET 17
CLE 33, BAL 30
CHI 18, KC 17
HOU 4, KC 2
In the first postseason game at Minute Maid Park since 2005, the Houston Astros came one game closer to their first-ever ALCS berth. Chris Carter belted a long home run and Jason Castro belted in a few more with a double. Dallas Keuchel remained perfect at home, pushing Kansas City's backs against the wall Monday in Houston.
TOR 5, TEX 1
Fending off elimination in enemy territory, the Blue Jays are now able to fight another day against Texas. They were able to get to Martin Perez early, and Troy Tulowitzki's home run late but the game out of reach. Now, with a win Monday, Toronto can force a decisive Game 5 back above the border on Wednesday.
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