Dawson’s long field goal gives Browns the victory


Phil Dawson capped a five field-goal outing by kicking a career-long 56-yarder with 1:39 remaining to secure the Cleveland Browns’ 29-27 win over the reeling Buffalo Bills on Monday night at Orchard Park, N.Y.

Cleveland (4-6) ended a two-game skid and rallied to avoid wasting a 13-point lead for a third consecutive game.

The Bills (5-5) had a chance to win with a clutch kick of their own, but Rian Lindell missed a 47-yard attempt with 38 seconds left.


Buffalo has lost four straight and five of six, looking nothing like the team that started 4-0. Trent Edwards endured another sloppy performance, with three of the Bills’ first four possessions ending in interceptions by the Browns.

Brady Quinn earned his first victory in his second career start. The 2007 first-round pick completed 14 of 36 passes for 185 yards.

Graham could be out for the season

Tampa Bay’s Earnest Graham injured his right ankle during a victory over the Minnesota Vikings, and Buccaneers Coach Jon Gruden said the running back’s season “could be in jeopardy.”

Graham was hurt on his only carry in Sunday’s 19-13 win, limping off after landing awkwardly when he was tackled after a three-yard gain.

“His status for the rest of the season is very much in question right now,” Gruden said. “I don’t have the exact medical terms, but I will say right now, it doesn’t look like he’ll play any time soon.”

League to hear appeals

Minnesota Vikings defensive linemen Jared Allen, Pat Williams and Kevin Williams will meet with NFL officials later this week to appeal their suspensions after testing positive for a weight-loss diuretic considered a masking agent for steroids.

Additional appeals will be heard today for three New Orleans Saints: running back Deuce McAllister and defensive ends Charles Grant and Will Smith.

Barber criticizes McNabb

Philadelphia quarterback Donovan McNabb’s misunderstanding of the overtime rules is “indefensible” and may have hurt his team’s playoff chances, former NFL running back Tiki Barber said.

McNabb, a 10-year NFL veteran, said at a postgame news conference that he didn’t realize games could end in ties until the final play of overtime in Sunday’s 13-13 tie against Cincinnati, when his coach called for a deep pass in an attempt to earn the win.

Pace is out two to four weeks

St. Louis Rams offensive tackle Orlando Pace will be sidelined two to four weeks because of a knee injury sustained in Sunday’s loss at San Francisco.

Coach Jim Haslett also counted out running back Steven Jackson, who will miss his fourth game in five weeks because of a persistent thigh injury.

Lynch retires

Nine-time Pro Bowl safety John Lynch retired, saying it was time to begin a new phase of life after 11 seasons with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and four more with the Denver Broncos. The 37-year-old made five trips to the Pro Bowl as a Buccaneer and four as a Bronco after Tampa Bay released him after the 2003 season in what generally was viewed as a cost-cutting move, even though Lynch was willing to take less money to stay.

In Denver, he was being bumped from his starting role and signed with New England during training camp. The Patriots cut him two weeks later, and Lynch had been pondering retirement ever since.