Wembley memories - A look back at previous NFL games to have been held in London

Last Updated: 25/10/12 8:11pm

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The NFL returns to Wembley on Sunday for the sixth consecutive year when the St Louis Rams take on the New England Patriots.

Quarterbacks Sam Bradford and Tom Brady go head-to-head in a battle between two teams looking to give their play-off prospects an early boost.

To whet your appetite ahead of the latest London renewal, Sky Sports looks back over the previous five regular-season games to be held in the capital.

2007 - New York Giants 13-10 Miami Dolphins

The inaugural Wembley visit was a mud bath

The NFL's first regular-season game in Europe was a wet and wild affair between the New York Giants and Miami Dolphins, two teams with a strong British following.

The turf cut up so badly underfoot as to make passing fraught with danger. Giants QB Eli Manning completed just eight-of-22 for 59 yards but did at least run in his side's only touchdown as they opened a 13-0 lead at half-time.

The Dolphins, who went on to finish with a 1-15 record in Cam Cameron's only season as head coach, came back in the second half, Ted Ginn Jr's touchdown reducing their deficit to three points with two minutes left to play.

But they did not get the ball back as the Giants closed out a win that proved the start of a renaissance, culminating in Super Bowl glory four months later.

2008 - San Diego Chargers 32-37 New Orleans Saints

Lance Moore got in the spirit of the venue

Drew Brees wowed another full house with a passing masterclass as the New Orleans Saints prevailed in a shootout over the San Diego Chargers.

Brees connected on 30-of-41 for 339 passing yards and three touchdowns, including a 30-yarder to Lance Moore in the second quarter that prompted a celebration more often seen in the English Premier League - Moore sliding across the grass on his knees.

Chargers QB Philip Rivers topped Brees with 341 yards through the air and also produced three touchdowns - but could not quite engineer a fourth-quarter comeback.

Rivers hooked up with Vincent Jackson with just over two minutes remaining to put San Diego back within a score at 37-30.

But, despite twice getting the ball back in a frantic finale - which included Brees having to take a safety in his own end zone - Rivers' efforts were in vain as the game ended with his Hail Mary failing to find a team-mate.

2009 - New England Patriots 35-7 Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Tom Brady proved a pass master

The third Wembley showdown was the most one-sided affair as the New England Patriots rode Tom Brady's hot arm to a comprehensive success over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

Brady, one of the standout quarterbacks of his - or any other - generation, piled up 308 passing yards and three touchdowns, although he was also picked off twice.

The contest was effectively settled early in the second quarter as, after New England safety Brandon Meriweather returned an interception to the house to end the opening series, Brady followed up with a couple of TD strikes.

Brady's favourite target Wes Welker finished with 10 catches for 107 yards, while the Patriots added a couple more touchdowns after half-time to ice the victory.

2010 - Denver Broncos 16-24 San Francisco 49ers

It was a Troy story for the 49ers

Troy Smith made the most of a rare start to lead a fourth-quarter comeback as the San Francisco 49ers edged out the Denver Broncos.

Quarterback Smith, preferred to namesake Alex, ran in one score himself and then found Michael Crabtree with a 28-yard touchdown pass as the 49ers came to life late in the game.

Denver back-up QB Tim Tebow had barrelled in from close range for the only touchdown of the opening three quarters before Matt Prater's field goal padded the Broncos' lead to 10-3 with just over 14 minutes left.

But Smith's heroics were supplemented by a third San Francisco touchdown in quick succession from running back Frank Gore - meaning Brandon Lloyd's late effort for the Broncos was immaterial.

2011 - Chicago Bears 24-18 Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Matt Forte was in tune for the Bears in 2011

Running back Matt Forte ran free as the Chicago Bears claimed a 24-18 win over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

Forte piled up 145 yards and a touchdown on 25 carries, enough to make up for a mixed display from Bears quarterback Jay Cutler who threw two interceptions and was under pressure all day.

Cutler's opposite number Josh Freeman also struggled when he went to the air and was picked off on four occasions.

The Bucs came into the game with a 4-2 record but the defeat was the start of a 10-match losing run that cost head coach Raheem Morris his job.

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