The teams I picked to win this week were mostly wrong and further established the unpredictable ways of the NFL. “Any given Sunday” anything can happen and this week was very indicative of that term. The games I have thoughts on will be similar to last week as the playoff contending games are the only ones I will acknowledge. Football Sundays during this time of the year is the best television show and it fails to disappoint….. My reactions
SD 27 DEN 20
A game where most thought the Broncos would win by two touchdowns easy didn’t go that way. The short turnaround in the week didn’t help the Broncos as they looked flat all night. The Chargers established themselves at the line of scrimmage and pretty much took over this game with great ball control offense. Ryan Matthews was a catalyst in keeping Peyton on the sidelines with his 5th +100yds rushing game of the year. By the time the Broncos got rolling offensively there just were not much time left and the Broncos defense could not get off the field on third downs. The Chargers playoff hopes are still alive with this huge road victory.
CHI 38 CLE 31
Jay Cutler was clearly rusty in his first game back, coupled with the fact that he was playing in inclement weather against a feisty Cleveland Browns defense. However, Jay Cutler having arguably the best receiving duo in the league and an opportunistic defense helps immensely in overcoming obstacles. The Bears held onto their playoff hopes with this win.
MIA 24 NE 20
The Dolphins are one of the hottest teams in the league right now and ran up against a Gronk(less) Patriots team at home at the right time. Ryan Tannehill is growing up for the Dolphins right before our eyes and making big time plays in big time moments to validate being a top 10 pick. Tannehill marched down the field late in the 4th quarter to score a touchdown to take the lead dropping a few dimes on key downs. Tom Brady was spectacular but the Dolphins made a few more plays than he could and ultimately sealed the victory with an interception in the endzone. The Dolphins currently hold the final playoff spot in the AFC and look good to hold onto it.
MIN 48 PHI 30
Nobody saw this meltdown by the Philadelphia Eagles coming based on the fact that the Vikings were without their stud running back Adrien Peterson. The Vikings put up 48 points led by Matt Cassell but it was more surprising to see that the Eagles could not keep up. The NFC East is the worst division in football so the loss isn’t too surprising but considering how well the Eagles have been playing this almost comes as a total shock. This game is a prime example of NFL football at its finest when pointing towards predictability.
SEA 23 NYG 0
The Seahawks have virtually nailed down the top seed in the NFC but this needed to be pointed out that the Giants scored ZERO points on their home field. Eli Manning threw 5 interceptions and was yanked from the game. It has gotten that bad and the Giants have hit rock bottom.
CAR 30 NYJ 20
It is worth noting that Cam Newton is having a fantastic year and the Panthers look as if they will make the playoffs. This was a much needed season for Cam who has somewhat been the forgotten man amongst the “new age” quarterbacks.
GB 37 DAL 36
There is only one team who can be up 26-3 at halftime and manage to lose, that team would be the DALLAS COWBOYS. They decided it was a great idea to only run the ball 7 times in the 2nd half and right on cue the defense got trampled and put Tony Romo in hero mode once again and of course it all comes down to the inevitable interception. Teams scoring over 35 in a game this season are a combined 51-2 (guess who represents oner of those two losses). The most disgusting part of this train wreck referred to as the Cowboys is that they STILL have an opportunity to win the division. *Barf*
STL 27 NO 16
The Saints don’t want to admit their road woes but these types of losses make it hard to ignore. Drew Brees was under duress all day and could not get on track offensively. On the defensive side of the ball they were pushed around and allowed over 140 yards rushing to a team with limited receiving options (so they knew they needed to stop the run). This loss just makes their showdown with the Panthers even more important towards winning their division and getting a home playoff game.
ARI 37 TEN 34
Bruce Arians continues to impress leading these Cardinals, and they should hopefully make the playoffs as it is well deserved. This was a gutsy road win but it took overtime to pull it through. Carson Palmer has been playing well as of late and they have also got some good contribution from running back Rashard Mendenhall who looks more healthy than early in the year. If this team makes the postseason they will be a tough out based on their scrappy defense and ability to score as they have an underrated core of skill players (outside of the stud Larry Fitzgerald).
PIT 30 CIN 20
It was disappointing to see the Bengals look so flat and unable to take advantage of an old and tired Pittsburgh team. The Bengals are too talented to get beat in the fashion they did on Sunday night. The leader of the Bengals which is quarterback Andy Dalton just isn’t the guy to lead them to the promise land as he threw errant passes and made bad decisions for the majority of the night. The defense has been ripped apart by injuries but there is still plenty of firepower to get things done but this game is an example of why the Bengals are going nowhere.
BAL 18 DET 16
This is a game I thought had the makings to be somewhat of a shootout, but then also could be low scoring based on the erratic play of both quarterbacks. The potential of both of these defenses was on full display, but the inconsistencies of both quarterbacks were visible as well. I have referred to the Lions as the “Cowboys of the NFC North” and they didn’t disappoint. Matt Stafford threw a couple awful and untimely picks that cost them the game and Calvin Johnson had some inexplicably key drops that killed momentum. The Ravens continue to look primed for a playoff run and the Lions look like they will fall short of expectations once again.
We are gearing up for a great playoff push and I can’t to see it all unfold. Coaches and players are playing to keep jobs and the pressure to perform is evident. Thanks for reading you guys and I will see you next week! Happy Holidays!