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DENVER — The Denver Broncos took the city’s minds off the Colorado Rockiesfor a few hours Sunday night, beating the Pittsburgh Steelers 31-28 on JasonElam’s 49-yard field goal as time expired.

Rookie Tim Crowder had a 50-yard fumble recovery for a touchdown and JayCutler threw three TD passes and the Broncos (3-3), coming off their worst homeloss in 41 years, looked nothing like the troubled team that had lost playmakerson both sides of the ball and whose season was threatening to unravel before theleaves had finished falling.

Suddenly able to get to the passer despite Pro Bowl cornerback Champ Bailey(thigh) missing a game for just the third time in his career, the Broncos forcedthree turnovers and sacked Ben Roethlisberger four times.

The Steelers (4-2), who had allowed just five touchdowns all season ,surrendered four on this night, including Cutler’s throws of 15 yards to BrandonStokley and 1 yard each to Tony Scheffler and Cecil Sapp.

Elam, who has the game-winner in all three of the Broncos’ wins so far,nailed his kick to cap a seven-play, 49-yard drive that covered the final 1:10after Pittsburgh had rallied from a 14-point second-half deficit to tie it.

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LOS ANGELES — Shav Glick, who covered the Indianapolis 500 and a variety ofother races during 37 years writing about motorsports for the Los Angeles Times,has died. He was 87.

Glick died Saturday at his Pasadena home of complications from melanoma, thenewspaper confirmed Sunday. He retired at 85 last year.

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DENVER — The Denver Broncos became the first team this season to score onPittsburgh’s defense in the first half when Brandon Stokley caught a 15-yardpass to tie the game at 7 after the first quarter on Sunday night.

The Steelers marched the ball down the field with ease on their openingdrive, which culminated with Ben Roethlisberger’s 1-yard touchdown pass to tightend Heath Miller. It was Miller’s third touchdown catch of the season.

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ST. PAUL, Minn. — Mikko Koivu’s goal with 3:04 remaining in the game liftedthe Minnesota Wild to a 3-2 victory over the Colorado Avalanche on Sunday night.

With both teams stagnant in the final period, Koivu grabbed the puck out ofthe corner, started like he was going to carry it behind the net and then made alightning quick move to the short side and simply bulled his way out in front.

He stuffed the puck past a surprised Peter Budaj, lifting the Wild to theirseventh win in the first eight games.

Niklas Backstrom made 29 saves and Mark Parrish and Brian Rolston alsoscored for the Wild.

Andrew Brunette and Tyler Arnason scored for the Avalanche, who got 29 savesfrom Budaj.


By Bruce Martin PA SportsTicker Contributing Editor

MARTINSVILLE, Virginia (Ticker) – NASCAR would kill for a good finish, just ask David Ragan.

In what was supposed to be a “green-white-checkered flag” finish to Sunday’s Subway 500 at Martinsville Speedway, Ragan’s Ford spun out and stopped in between turns 1 and 2 at the tight .526-mile short track.

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COLUMBUS, Ohio — Ryan Kesler scored two goals and goaltender Curtis Sanfordhad a solid game in his first start of the season to lead the Vancouver Canuckspast the Columbus Blue Jackets 4-1 on Sunday night.

Markus Naslund and Kevin Bieksa added goals for the Canucks, who had losttheir last two games. They won despite being outshot 20-0 during one lengthyspan.

Naslund’s goal gave the Canucks some breathing room. Ahead 2-1 and hangingon in the third period, Naslund controlled the puck as he skated down the rightwing and then angled sharply toward the high slot, waiting patiently until heripped a hard wrist shot high into the corner of the net.

Kesler, who played college hockey at Ohio State, stole the puck fromColumbus’ Nikolai Zherdev and scored on a shorthanded empty-netter after theBlue Jackets pulled their goaltender for a two-man advantage with just over aminute remaining.

Kesler stretched his points streak to three games — he had three assists inVancouver’s last two games — when he scored on a wrister from the left circle onthe Canucks’ first shot, 5:39 in. It was just a straightforward rush, with noone in front of the goal, yet it eluded Columbus goaltender Pascal Leclaire.

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PHILADELPHIA — Don’t count out the Bears quite yet.

Desperately needing a victory to stay in the NFC hunt, Chicago’s BrianGriese connected with Muhsin Muhammad for 15-yard touchdown pass with 9 secondsleft to lift the Bears to a 19-16 win over the Philadelphia Eagles on Sundaynight.

The Bears didn’t even need Devin Hester to bail them out of jam with anexplosive return. Instead, the final, thrilling drive was all Griese.

The Bears (3-4) were pinned on the 3-yard line with 1 minute, 57 secondsleft and trailing 16-12. Griese completed a series of short passes over themiddle that got the Bears quickly gaining yards after nearly 58 minutes ofnothing but stagnant football.

Hester, the dynamic kick returner, had been shut down on special teams andwas a non-factor on offense until Griese found him for a 21-yard gain thatbrought Chicago to the 15 of Philadelphia.

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IRVING, Texas — Scoring a first-quarter touchdown wasn’t the spark theDallas Cowboys thought it would be.

Returning a blocked field goal for a touchdown for the first time since1983? Yeah, that did the trick.

Chris Canty swatted a potential go-ahead kick by Minnesota and Pat Watkinsreturned it 68 yards for a go-ahead touchdown for Dallas, sending the Cowboyspast the Vikings 24-14 Sunday in a game they dominated but nearly gave away.

Dallas bounced back from a lopsided home loss to New England and guaranteeditself at least two more weeks atop the NFC because of an upcoming bye. Duringthe time off, the Cowboys can savor being 6-1 for the first time since 1995(their last Super Bowl season) and having beaten the Vikings for the first since1996.

Minnesota (2-4) lost for the third time in four games. Rookie AdrianPeterson followed his record-setting, 224-yard performance last week with only63 this time.

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GAINESVILLE, Fla. — Florida coach Urban Meyer has talked all seasonabout trying to limit the number of carries for quarterback Tim Tebow.

Now, he might really have to do it.

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BOULDER, Colo. — Kansas coach Mark Mangino hears the same question overand over: Are his Jayhawks for real?

“I’m not going to say if we’re for real or not,” said Mangino, whose teammoved up to No. 12 Sunday in the latest poll. “You watch the games, you see ifwe’re for real.”

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