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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Vikings Stun Bears, Take Division Lead

MINNEAPOLIS, Minnesota -- Cris Carter turned Warren Moon's short pass into a 65-yard touchdown in overtime Thursday night, giving the Minnesota Vikings a 33-27 victory over the Chicago Bears and a tie for the lead in the NFC Central.

Moon's second scoring pass to Carter, 5:46 into the extra period, came two plays after Kevin Butler missed a 40-yard field goal that would have given the Bears (8-5) their second overtime win in two weeks and a two-game division lead .

Instead the Vikings (8-5) took control of the division, thanks to their season sweep of the Bears, and ended a three-game losing streak.

On Sunday in Philadelphia another team that has lost three straight games faces a crucial game with Dallas, which could clinch the NFC East title with a win on the road in one of the key weekend games.

Several teams that seemed bound for the playoffs before disastrous results in November face showdowns this weekend in the race for division championships or wild card spots.

In AFC West action Sunday, John Elway's Denver Broncos will face Joe Montana's Kansas City Chiefs. If Montana is well -- his condition continues to be listed as uncertain after a sprained foot last week -- the game will pit two all-time greats at engineering fourth-quarter comebacks against one another. In their last meeting, Oct. 17, Elway marched the Broncos 39 yards in six plays to take the lead with 1:29 left on the clock -- only to have Montana fire back with a touchdown pass to win the game, 31-28, with eight seconds left.

Three other games Sunday have playoff repercussions for both teams, as Buffalo plays at Miami, Green Bay plays at Detroit and the New York Jets travel to New England. Other Sunday games are: Pittsburgh at Cininnati, Washington at Tampa Bay, Arizona at Houston, Atlanta at San Francisco, Indianapolis at Seattle, New Orleans at the Los Angeles Rams, and the New York Giants at Cleveland. On Monday the Los Angeles Raiders will play at San Diego.

The Chicago-Minnesota game remained tight from start to finish.

After the Bears drove to Minnesota's 23, Butler's kick was wide left. Then Moon and Carter fired up.

On second down, Moon threw into the flat to Carter. He spun away from linebacker Joe Cain, straddled the sideline for a few steps, and avoided a desperation tackle attempt by Shaun Gayle at the 10. He stumbled into the end zone standing.

Said Moon, "Cris did a great job lulling the linebacker. I didn't get it out there as far as I would have liked. It was a great individual effort."

Minnesota handed Chicago its first loss in five games and its first defeat in eight games this season, with Steve Walsh as the starting quarterback. Walsh, returning home on his 28th birthday, threw two touchdowns, but his first-quarter interception was returned 54 yards by rookie Dewayne Washington, to give the Vikings a 7-0 lead. (Reuters, MT)