Werder Bremen won 6-0 in Freiburg with five second-half goals to pull past idle Bayer Leverkusen to the top of the Bundesliga on Saturday.
Hannover lost its first game after the suicide of captain and goalkeeper Robert Enke, going down 2-0 at Schalke, which moved into third place. A minute of silence was held at all stadiums in memory of Enke, who threw himself before a train Nov. 10 after suffering from depression for six years.
"It was very difficult today," said Arnold Bruggink, Hannover's new captain. "But after the minute of silence it simply got under way. And once it starts, you keep going somehow. We tried everything." Coach Andreas Bergmann said it was good to return to a stadium atmosphere.
"I told my players to try to play football again," he said. "Not for Robert, but with Robert. He will stay in our hearts."
Defending champion Wolfsburg lost 3-2 at home to Nuremberg, Stuttgart rallied to rescue a 1-1 draw against bottom-place Hertha Berlin, Hoffenheim jumped to fourth place by winning 4-0 in Cologne and Borussia Moenchengladbach also won on the road, beating Eintracht Frankfurt 2-1.
In the late match, Mainz earned a 0-0 draw at Borussia Dortmund.
Mesut Oezil scored one goal, set up three and earned a penalty to lead Bremen past Freiburg and stretch his team's unbeaten run to 20 games in all competitions. Bremen has 26 points and leads on goal difference over Leverkusen, which can regain the top spot if it wins or draws at Bayern Munich on Sunday.
"We played a very, very good game," Bremen coach Thomas Schaaf said. "We opened strongly and had many chances already in the first half. They started well in the second half but then we scored again and that took the wind out of them."
Schalke now has 25 points and Hoffenheim 23. Hamburger SV also has 23 and can pull away if it beats Bochum in Sunday's second match.
Despite playing without injured striker Claudio Pizarro, Werder piled on the pressure from kickoff, playing a quick passing game that left Freiburg no chance. Schaaf's team missed several chances and hit the post twice before Hugo Almeida connected with a header from a cross by Oezil in the 33rd.
Marko Marin scored with a free kick from an acute angle to double Bremen's lead and launch the visitors' second-half barrage.
Almeida had another goal, Oezil scored himself and then earned the penalty converted by Naldo before Markus Rosenberg completed the rout.
Jefferson Farfan scored in the 69th and Jan Moravek got the insurance goal in injury time to help Schalke beat Hannover.
Hannover players had a small No. 1 printed on the front of their shirts in memory of Enke. Goalkeeper Florian Fromlowitz, who had been Enke's understudy, was given a big round of applause before kickoff.
Fromlowitz had some good saves but was helpless when Farfan connected with a powerful header following a corner from Rafinha.
Moravek scored his first Bundesliga goal from a counterattack shortly after coming on as a late substitute.
The victory was the first for Felix Magath's team after three straight draws.
Peer Kluge scored on a counterattack in the third minute of injury time to secure Nuremberg's victory in Wolfsburg.
Nuremberg outplayed the defending champion, leading twice on goals from Albert Bunjaku. Wolfsburg rallied both times on a goal from Ashkan Dejagah and a penalty from Grafite, before Kluge sealed the upset.
Hoffenheim went up two goals inside the first 11 minutes form Carlos Eduardo and Chinedu Obasi, Demba Ba scored one minute into the second half and Vedad Ibisevic earned and converted a late penalty as Cologne slumped to its fifth home defeat.
Stuttgart, champion two seasons ago, slipped into the relegation zone after drawing with Hertha, which was fourth last season but now is desperately trying to lift itself from the bottom.
Hertha appeared headed for its second win of the season when Adrian Ramos scored in the 49th. But Zdravko Kuzmanovic salvaged the draw in the 82nd - only to be sent off three minutes later with his second booking of the game after tangling with Gojko Kacar, his Serbia teammate from Hertha.
Moenchengladbach scored its second straight away victory on an own goal by Marco Russ and a header by Roel Brouwers. Eintracht pulled one back on a penalty from Pirmin Schwegler but could not avoid its second consecutive loss.