- Associated Press - Monday, January 9, 2017


GREEN BAY, Wis. (AP) - Aaron Rodgers, master of the Hail Mary pass, struck again in another big moment.

Rodgers overcame a sluggish start and finished with four touchdown passes, including a momentum-swinging 42-yard heave to Randall Cobb at the end of the second quarter, to lead the Green Bay Packers to a 38-13 win Sunday over the New York Giants in an NFC wild-card game.

The Packers move on to face the Dallas Cowboys in the divisional round next week. PITTSBURGH (AP) - Injuries forced Ben Roethlisberger, Antonio Brown and Le’Veon Bell to wait three seasons for the chance to run onto the field together in the playoffs. The wait for the Pittsburgh Steelers’ “Big Three” to do it again won’t be nearly as long.

Bell ran for a franchise postseason record 167 yards and two scores, Brown caught five passes for 124 yards and a pair of first-quarter touchdowns from Roethlisberger as the Steelers overwhelmed the beaten-up and mistake-prone Miami Dolphins 30-12 on Sunday.

Pittsburgh ran off its eighth straight victory by avenging a whipping by the Dolphins in mid-October to set up a visit to AFC West champion Kansas City next Sunday.

PITTSBURGH (AP) - Pittsburgh Steelers assistant coach Joey Porter is accused of assaulting a doorman at a Pittsburgh bar just hours after the team’s wild-card win over the Miami Dolphins.

The alleged incident happened Sunday night following the Steelers’ 30-12 victory over the Dolphins in the opening round of the NFL playoffs.

Police said security guards at The Flats on Carson summoned a police officer who was working at a nearby restaurant “due to an unruly customer who was in the process of assaulting the doorman.”

Police said the officer stopped the assault and arrested the customer, who was later identified as the 39-year-old Porter, a former star player.

SEATTLE (AP) - The formula that has led the Seattle Seahawks to unmatched success over the past five seasons returned.

A healthy dose of Thomas Rawls rumbling on the ground. A few timely throws by Russell Wilson helped by some remarkable catches. And a defense that never allowed Detroit a sniff of the end zone.

Rawls rushed for a franchise playoff-record 161 yards, Paul Richardson made one of the catches of the year for his first career postseason touchdown, and the Seahawks beat the Lions 26-6 on Saturday night in an NFC wild-card game. Seattle will next face Atlanta on Saturday.

HOUSTON (AP) - Brock Osweiler finally looked like the player Houston spent $72 million on, throwing for a touchdown and running for another to lead the Texans to a 27-14 wild-card playoff win over the Oakland Raiders on Saturday.

Osweiler, benched on Dec. 18, got his job back this week with Tom Savage out with a concussion, and played his best game of the season to give the Texans their first playoff victory since the 2012 season.

Houston bounced back after an embarrassing 30-0 wild-card loss to Kansas City last season to advance to face New England in the divisional round on Saturday.

CLEVELAND (AP) - The Browns hired Gregg Williams to fix a defense that was among the NFL’s worst in 2016.

Buffalo’s coach from 2001 to 2003, Williams spent the past three seasons as defensive coordinator for the Los Angeles Rams. He replaces Ray Horton, who was fired by Hue Jackson after Cleveland went 1-15 this season. It’s the second time Horton has been dismissed by the Browns after one season.

The 58-year-old Williams will take over a defense that lacked playmakers and was gashed for big yardage. The Browns were ranked 31st in yards allowed, 31st in rushing and 30th in points allowed.


KAPALUA, Hawaii (AP) - Justin Thomas had to sweat it out more than he wanted to enjoy that view down the 18th hole at Kapalua on Sunday.

Thomas had a five-shot lead with five holes to play when he was caught in a battle with Hideki Matsuyama down the stretch in the SBS Tournament of Champions. Thomas responded with a defining shot in his young career, an 8-iron approach he ripped from 214 yards to 3 feet on the 17th.

Matsuyama, one shot behind and needing birdie to stay in the game, ran his 30-foot putt about 8 feet by the hole and three-putted for bogey. Thomas knocked in his short putt for a three-shot lead, and he went on to another birdie for a 4-under 69 and a three-shot victory.

Thomas won for the second time this season, and third time in his career. His other two PGA Tour titles were at the CIMB Classic in Malaysia.


WACO, Texas (AP) - Out of the Top 25 when the season started, new point guard Manu Lecomte and the Baylor Bears are on the verge of the first No. 1 ranking in school history.

Lecomte scored 17 points, Johnathan Motley had 13 and second-ranked Baylor came through for a raucous crowd hoping to celebrate a rise to the top of the poll, beating Oklahoma State 61-57 on Saturday night.

It was significant even for first-year Cowboys coach Brad Underwood, who has some roots in the Big 12 and remembers where the scandal-plagued Baylor program was when coach Scott Drew took over 13 years ago.

Baylor will likely move into the No. 1 spot after top-ranked Villanova lost earlier in the week.


KEARNS, Utah (AP) - Joey Mantia won the 1,000 meters and the mass start race Sunday on the final day of the U.S. Speed Skating Championships, and Heather Bergsma swept the women’s events.

For the second consecutive day, Mantia posted the world’s fastest time this season, finishing the 1,000 in 1 minute, 7.52 seconds. He also posted the top time in the 1,500 on Saturday.

His 1,000 time was 0.05 seconds better than Vincent De Haitre’s winning time at the Canadian Single Distances Championships in Calgary, Alberta, on Thursday. Mantina finished 0.31 seconds ahead of second-place finisher Shani Davis.

Bergsma built on her wins in the women’s 500 races on Friday by taking the 1,000 and mass start race.

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