ARLINGTON, Texas (AP) - Lance Briggs plucked the ball out of the air and started rumbling down the field. As the Chicago linebacker approached the end zone, he fully extended his right arm over his head with the ball in his hand.
SANTA CLARA (AP) - San Francisco's defense has a little inside game of its own going on in practice each week: "Takeaway Thursday."
ALAMEDA (AP) - For the Oakland Raiders, the bye is coming at just the right time.
SACRAMENTO (AP) - Keith Smart believes changing the attitude of the Sacramento Kings starts with taking the team out of Northern California.
ATLANTA (AP) - Matt Bryant kicked a 40-yard field goal with 5 seconds remaining and the Atlanta Falcons remained unbeaten, rallying past the Carolina Panthers 30-28 on Sunday.
BALTIMORE (AP) - The Baltimore Orioles clinched their first playoff berth since 1997, extending their winning streak to four by beating the Boston Red Sox 6-3 Sunday as Nate McLouth, J.J. Hardy and Chris Davis hit solo homers.
ST. LOUIS (AP) - Carlos Beltran homered from both sides of the plate for the ninth time in his career and drove in five runs, and the St. Louis Cardinals closed in on the NL's second wild-card berth by beating the Washington Nationals 10-4 Sunday.
EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. (AP) - The New York Jets were a delicious treat for the San Francisco 49ers.
DENVER (AP) - Instead of coming from behind, Peyton Manning spent the second half piling it on.
OAKLAND (AP) - Yoenis Cespedes hit a go-ahead homer in the eighth inning to move Oakland a win closer to the club's first playoff berth in six years, and the Athletics beat the Seattle Mariners 5-2 on Sunday to stay right on the heels of Texas in the AL West race.
SAN DIEGO (AP) - Pinch hitter Xavier Nady homered off Huston Street to tie the game with one out in the ninth and Hunter Spence hit a go-ahead, two-run shot as the San Francisco Giants rallied to beat the San Diego Padres 7-5 Sunday.
GREEN BAY, Wis. (AP) - Referee Jeff Triplette struck a triumphant tone before Sunday's Saints-Packers game at Lambeau Field, announcing during the pregame coin toss that "it's great to be back, gentlemen!"
MEDINAH, Ill. (AP) - Erasing some of their worst Ryder Cup memories, the Europeans wore the image of Seve Ballesteros on their sleeves and played their hearts out Sunday at Medinah to match the greatest comeback in history and head home with that precious gold trophy.
DOVER, Del. (AP) - Brad Keselowski had fuel to spare for a couple of victory burnouts.
LECCO, Italy (AP) - Joaquin Rodriguez won the Giro di Lombardia with a late solo breakaway in the rain Saturday to end the season at the top of the UCI rankings.
LOS ANGELES (AP) - Fresh off another early playoff exit, the Los Angeles Dodgers overhauled their front office Tuesday.
SAN FRANCISCO (AP) - As Barry Bonds hobbled to his car with the help of crutches post hip surgery, and well before the start of Game 3 of the NL Championship Series, the home run king insisted he can hardly remember the World Series of 12 years ago.
KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) - The last two times the Kansas City Royals played a postseason game at home, rain fell after the final out. This time, it started well before the first pitch.
ST. LOUIS (AP) - The San Francisco 49ers defense got beat early by unfamiliar plays and Austin Davis calling the signals.
ALAMEDA (AP) - Soon after taking over as interim coach of the Oakland Raiders, Tony Sparano had a simple message to deliver to quarterback Derek Carr: This is your team.
SAN FRANCISCO (AP) - The St. Louis Cardinals arrived in the Bay Area ballpark they know so well in October and began preparing for the possibility of facing the Giants without star catcher Yadier Molina.
BOCA RATON, Fla. (AP) - Mix Diskerud is not planning on becoming the next Landon Donovan.
PHOENIX (AP) - Chip Hale spent 10 seasons in the Arizona Diamondbacks' organization, the final three as the major league third base coach. He also played at the University of Arizona and still lives in Tucson.
SAN FRANCISCO (AP) - Yadier Molina still hopes to contribute in some capacity during the NL Championship Series, if his sore side allows it.
Ned Yost has the revved-up Kansas City Royals on track for their first World Series trip in 29 years. Still, in his first postseason as a manager, every choice he's made has been dissected - and, in many cases, flat-out destroyed.
By RALPH D. RUSSO
SOUTHAMPTON, Bermuda (AP) - Jim Furyk thinks it's time for the Americans to think long term about the Ryder Cup.
OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) - For the first time, the Oklahoma City Thunder will be forced to play without Kevin Durant for more than a handful of games.
LAS VEGAS (AP) - Former heavyweight champion Leon Spinks is in a Las Vegas hospital after a second operation for abdominal problems.
SEATTLE (AP) - DeMarco Murray scored on a 15-yard run with 3:16 left and the Dallas Cowboys stunned the defending Super Bowl champion Seattle Seahawks 30-23 on Sunday.