As the NFL's 1 p.m. ET games neared their end on Sunday, three of the nine early games needed extra time to decide the winner.
The Detroit Lions had the most dramatic path to overtime. The Tennessee Titans were up 20-9 at halftime, but the Lions clawed their way back into the game. With back-up quarterback Shaun Hill in the game, the Lions scored twice in the last 18 seconds of regulation, including a Hail Mary pass that was tipped by the Titans but caught by Titus Young for a touchdown.
The drama continued as the Titans scored a field goal. Instead of going for the tie and keeping the game going, the Lions went for it on fourth down. Hill was stopped at fourth-and-1, giving Tennessee its first win of the season.
Miami Dolphins kicker Dan Carpenter pushed his team into overtime with the New York Jets with a 41-yard field goal with 16 seconds left on the clock. In overtime, Jets kicker Nick Folk had a field goal blocked. However, the Dolphins called a last-second timeout just before Folk kicked that negated their own block. Folk nailed it on the second try to put the Jets ahead for good.
The Kansas City Chiefs and the New Orleans Saints didn't let the other teams have all the overtime fun. Drew Brees had an abysmal fourth quarter, not completing a single pass and giving up a safety. Chiefs kicker Ryan Succop kicked three fourth-quarter field goals to push his team into overtime. He added one more in OT to win the game for the Chiefs and forced the Saints to an 0-3 start.
For the Saints, the loss puts them in a hole that will be tough to crawl out of. After the Minnesota Vikings pulled out a win, the Lions now find themselves in last place in the NFC North. Miami is 1-2 and in the bottom of the AFC East.
What this meant overall is that all three games pushed into the viewing time for the 4 p.m. games. All three games ended after 5 p.m. ET, forcing the NFL Network Red Zone's quad box into heavy, heavy usage. But it also speaks plenty about the league's parity. When six of the NFL's 32 teams needs more than an hour to decide who is better, it's a pretty good sign each team is getting an equal shot at winning.
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