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Falcons end Panthers' perfect run...Vikes clinch playoff berth, catch Vikes...Chiefs wrap up berth



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ATLANTA (AP) — The Carolina Panthers' bid for a perfect regulation season has ended with Sunday's 20-13 loss to the Falcons in Atlanta. Matt Ryan hooked up with Julio Jones for a 70--yard touchdown with 2:12 left in the third quarter to put the Falcons ahead to stay. Cam Newton threw for just 142 yards and ran for 46 yards, including an 8-yard scoring run to cap the Panthers' opening drive.

UNDATED (AP) — The Minnesota Vikings have clinched a playoff berth and moved into a tie with Green Bay for first place in the NFC North by ripping the New York Giants 49-17. Adrian Peterson ran for 104 yards and a TD, Jerick McKinnon had a pair of TD runs and Harrison Smith returned one of Eli Manning's three interceptions for a score. The Packers were 38-8 losers at Arizona as the Cardinals sacked Rodgers eight times and returned two of his fumbles for touchdowns.

KANSAS CITY. Mo. (AP) — The Kansas City Chiefs have wrapped up a playoff berth by earning their team record-tying ninth straight victory since a 1-5 start. Alex Smith threw two touchdown passes while the Chiefs were building a 17-3 halftime lead in a 17-13 win over Cleveland. The Browns picked up three first downs on their final drive before running out of time, allowing the Chiefs to stay in contention for the AFC West title.

UNDATED (AP) — The New York Jets have climbed ahead of Pittsburgh for the final AFC wild-card berth. Brandon Marshall had two touchdown receptions before Ryan Fitzpatrick hit Eric Decker for the game-winning TD in the Jets' 26-20 overtime win over New England. The Steelers were 20-17 losers to Baltimore as Ryan Mallett completed 28 of his 41 passes for a career-high 274 yards, one touchdown and no interceptions in his first start for the Ravens.

UNDATED (AP) — Brandon Weeden rushed for his first career touchdown and threw for two more in the Houston Texans' 34-6 win over Tennessee. That put the 8-7 Texans in position to clinch the AFC South title outright as early as Monday night if Cincinnati wins at Denver. Indianapolis kept its AFC South champion hopes alive as Charlie Whitehurst came off the bench to complete a pair of scoring drives in the Colts' 18-12 win over Miami.

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The Associated Press

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