Around the NFL

Seven plays that explain Week 9

Each week, the Around The NFL crew will choose the plays that defined Sunday.

It was not a huge shock that Tom Brady and Rob Gronkowski had a big game in Foxborough. It was a bigger surprise to see how many stops the bend-but-don't break Patriots' defense got against Peyton Manning. It took big plays like Rob Ninkovich's athletic interception and a few fourth down stops that included creative pressure up the middle. Bill Belichick trusted his cornerbacks to cover Denver one-on-one outside and he was rewarded. -- Gregg Rosenthal

If the 49ers miss the playoffs by one game, this might be remembered as the moment that did them in. Colin Kaepernick fumbles at the goal line with less than 10 seconds to play, leading to a turnover that dooms the Niners to a stomach-punch 13-10 loss to the Rams. Kaepernick says he crossed the goal line before the ball came loose -- can you see it? -- Dan Hanzus

If this 3-yard touchdown catch by Chiefs tight end Anthony Fasano doesn't perfectly encapsulate a lost Jets season, I don't know what does. -- Dan Hanzus

The Eagles' position in the NFC East depends entirely on how Mark Sanchez handles himself from here on out. In Chip Kelly's offense, Sanchez will undoubtedly have a better chance of succeeding than he did under Tony Sparano or Brian Schottenheimer, but how different of a quarterback will he really be? Sunday's throw to Jeremy Maclin -- Sanchez's first as an Eagle -- might have given us a hint. -- Conor Orr

It wasn't pretty, but the Browns are 5-3 -- and primed for a Thursday night showdown with the Bengals -- thanks to this 34-yard touchdown lob from Brian Hoyer to undrafted wideout Taylor Gabriel. "If you see me looking around, just go deep," Hoyer told his receivers before the play, a command Gabriel followed before burning Bucs cornerback Alterraun Verner. A crushing block from running back Terrance West didn't hurt, either. --* Marc Sessler*

Marshawn Lynch piled up 143 total yards and two rushing touchdowns as the unquestioned centerpiece of Seattle's tight win over the Raiders. Beast Mode ran with fresh legs and helped offset a Russell Wilson-led passing attack that generated just 45 yards at the half. Lynch would not be denied on his first of two scores on the ground, a hard-churning burst that saw him drag a handful of Raiders -- and Seahawks -- into the end zone. -- Marc Sessler

RGIII's worst pass of the first half changed the entire complexion of the game. He can't miss that bad to the inside of his receiver. The Captain Munnerlyn interception set up a touchdown that thrust the Vikings back in the game and jumpstarted Teddy Bridgewater and the offense. For Redskins fans it was a foreboding sign of an up-and-down second half for Griffin in the loss. -- Kevin Patra

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