Posts about AFC

NFL Playoffs preview: Divisional Round

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We’re officially at the apex of the football season. I know the ratings will continue to climb until we finally get to the Super Bowl, but in terms of amount of quality football that we’re going to watch, the divisional round provides the best and the brightest. Just look at the QBs we’re going to be seeing this weekend. One could argue that if you assume Aaron Rodgers also belongs, the remaining eight quarterbacks are the best in the league right now. There’s a combination of veterans with postseason experience mixed with the young, up and coming future faces of the league. What more could a football fan as for? But as the games gets tighter, it gets more and more difficult to predict. From past experience, I’ve always realized two things about the second round. The first is to never overreact after a first round victory. The second is that there’s always a home team that gets upset in the divisional round.

The divisional festivities begin with the Saints in Seattle, a rematch from Week 13. In fact, all but one of this weekend’s games are rematches. Last time these two teams squared off, it was completely dominated by the Seahawks from start to finish. Do the Saints have a realistic shot to win in Seattle? Right now, Seattle (-8) is a heavy favorite and most people don’t give New Orleans a realistic shot at winning the game. I’m not in that camp. First of all, the Saints have clear advantages in two key positions: quarterback and head coach. Drew Brees didn’t need a heroic effort last week as the Saints had a solid running game. If that stays true, New Orleans has a shot to control the clock and minimize the crowd noise by getting constant first downs. Despite some of the advantage the Saints might have, i’m not going to pick them to win this game. Seattle’s pass defense is just too good and they’ve been nearly unstoppable at home. Saints give a good fight but the Seahawks move on the NFC title game.

Prime time Saturday features the most eye-catching quarterback match up. All-American hero and poster boy Tom Brady is looking to further improve his postseason resume when future great Andrew Luck visits the Patriots (-7) in Foxborough. The Colts are firing on all cylinders after their second half comeback over the Chiefs but is that enough to get them going in the first half of this game, given their season trend of slow starts? The Patriots aren’t the type of team that gives up big leads. In fact, Belichick and Brady are well known for running up the score, showing no mercy when it comes to putting their opponents away. If i’m a Colts fan, that’s what fears me the most. Aside from the QB battle, the Colts pass offense against the Patriots defense is the match up that intrigues me the most. Can Indianapolis take advantage of a porous New England secondary? Luck will most likely be great and continue to fight, no matter what the score is, but I feel the Patriots will get off to a fast start that they won’t give up.

Sunday begins with what I believe to be the most competitive game of the weekend. What baffles me about this game is that the 49ers (-1) are favorites on the road, against the Panthers, who beat them previously in SF exactly two months ago. I know, I know, the Niners were missing some key players but it feels slightly disrespectful to Cam Newton and co to be underdogs. These two teams play a very similar style. Both have excellent defenses and an excellent running game, led by their dual-threat QBs. It’ll be interesting to see how well Kaepernick’s connection with Michael Crabtree continues after a great performance last week. Not having Steve Smith at 100% will hurt the Panthers’ offense but I expect the Carolina defense to do well in limiting the 49ers attack. Even as I write this, i’m still not sure who is going to win this game. In all honesty, it will come down to who has the ball last in scoring position. Carolina’s only loss at home this season was to Seattle, in the first game of the season. Panthers edge out the Niners.

We’ll know three of the four teams left by the time the Chargers visit Denver (-9.5) to take on Peyton Manning and his arsenal of weapons. Last time around in Denver, Phil Rivers (Mr Bolo tie) and the Chargers surprised the Broncos on a Thursday night. How much do we take from that game? Thursday night games are always wonky but the Chargers presented some real problems for the Broncos. San Diego is showing all the signs of the Super Bowl champs of the past few years, catching breaks and gaining momentum at the games go on. This time around the Chargers defense won’t have Andy Dalton’s mistakes to take advantage of. Or will they? Manning’s “cold weather woes” will unlikely be in play but his “Chargers woes” will be. Yes, i’m going for it. The Chargers will control the clock with long drives, get enough pressure on Manning and upset the Broncos. Because of the way the league has been going all season long, i’m going with the possible over the probable in this game. Chargers upset the Broncos.

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Wrapping up the NFL’s final week of the regular season

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In a season full of surprising results, week 17 actually provided some stability from the top tier teams around the league. Aside from the Panthers, every team that was supposed to dominate went out took care of business. The Seahawks, Broncos, Patriots, Bengals, Saints were favored by plenty of points and went out on the field, performing like a good team should heading into the playoffs. I don’t count the 49ers close win over the Cardinals as surprising because Arizona is a playoff caliber team that was expected to keep the game close. Same doesn’t go for the Panthers, who got off to a slow start against a Falcons that didn’t have anything to play for other than Tony Gonzalez’s final game. It’s sad to see Gonzalez go but he’s a guaranteed HOF’er and the undisputed greatest tight end of all time. Despite some order around the league, the NFL still provided it’s fans with plenty of close games and plenty of drama. Things broke well for the Chargers, so well that Ryan Succop’s missed field goal (would put the Steelers in) is now a controversial field goal that should have been replayed due to an officiating error that was missed. Despite the amount of breaks the Chargers have received, San Diego won four straight games in the most important part of the season and deserves a spot in the playoffs. So do the Packers because despite missing their star QB for most the second half of this season, Green Bay still went into Chicago and became “kings of the north” for this season. Some of the blame should go to the Lions, who were the healthiest team in the division but still managed to collapse in the second part of the season. Let’s get to the stocks for this week:

Stock UP: Peyton Manning and any offensive play he’s involved with; Matt Forte’s running style despite being on the losing side; the Steelers, for taking care of business despite having a slim chance for the postseason that nearly panned out; Seattle’s bounce back victory after getting knocked down last week; the Bengals offense despite Dalton’s four picks; Justin Tucker cementing his post as the best kicker in the league; LeSean McCoy’s running style and ball protection; the Saints offense all of sudden looking scary again; the Patriots continuing to win despite key injuries.

Stock DOWN: the Cowboys, for the third straight year, in do-or-die games in week 17; Baltimore and Miami for not taking advantage of controlling their own destiny; Jim Shwartz and his tenure in Detroit that is now over; the Oakland Raiders in the first half of yesterday’s game against the Broncos; Joe Flacco’s mega contract reflecting on to this season; the Redskins who don’t own their top 2 pick this year; Chicago’s defensive inability to make a stop when it mattered most against the Packers; trying to figure out the Rams at all this season.

One last mini-rant about my Cowboys: i’m tired of the same old story. I gotta give some props to Kyle Orton, who played well despite the fact that everyone, including myself, had written off the Cowboys since the star of the week. But despite the defense playing well for once. Despite Jason Witten’s sneaky good game. Despite Dez and Escobar’s great touchdown catch and runs. Despite having the ball with enough time to drive down the field, the Cowboys manage to break hearts. Was there a more fitting way to end the season for Dallas last night? Another 8-8 season and another heartbreaking roller coaster ride.

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Previewing the final week in the NFL regular season

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For most of the season I was complaining about Thursday games and their lack of quality but I must admit, I’ve missed them since they’ve been gone. Or maybe i’m just slowly realizing that football is coming to an end sooner than later. At least the regular season is. Only one more week of regular season football but i’m hoping that it’s a good one. There’s a lot on the line for several teams. Division titles and playoff positions are still going to be decided. Most of the attention will be on the NFC as only three teams (Sea, Car and SF) have secured their spot in the postseason. We’ll get to them in the next paragraph because first we have to discuss the AFC and it’s second wild card spot. Let’s just assume that the Patriots and Broncos won’t slip up this weekend, each facing inferior opponents, to give up their top spots. The Ravens are fighting to land the wild card spot and are playing in Cincy this weekend, who is trying to stay in their position as a 3rd seed. Here’s the sneaky fact: Baltimore doesn’t need to win this weekend to make the playoffs. Of course they’re still going to try and win their game because the Dolphins, Chargers and even the Steelers all have chances of snatching up their spot. On a more personal note, i’d much rather see either Phil Rivers in the playoffs more than any of the other quarterbacks in contention. But the odds are stacked against San Diego and i’m afraid that they’re stacked a little too high. If I were a betting man (i’m not…that much) then I would probably put my money on the Dolphins mostly because they have the most favorable opponent and are in the best position when it comes to tie breakers. Then I think about their game last weekend and how they got shut out in Buffalo. I also think about how unpredictable this season has been. My money is still on the Dolphins but I fully expect anything and everything to happen with that 6th seed in the AFC.

So what’s going on in the NFC this Sunday? One almost has to feel bad for the Cardinals and their fanbase. A playoff caliber team competing in the best division in football. Does everyone realize that Arizona would be leading and/or tied for first place in four other divisions but because they’re in the NFC West, they’re in 3rd place and on the outside looking in? They would also be within one game of leading every other division remaining that’s not the AFC West. Then again, if the Cowboys were to somehow make the playoffs, I would not give up their spot to the Cardinals just because they have the better record. Arizona still has a shot but it would need to beat the 49ers (still with a lot at stake) and also need the Saints to lose against a mediocre Buccaneers team. There could be a lot shuffling between the top two spots in the conference along with the Niners but with Seahawks and Panthers both facing less than stellar teams, I don’t see much happening. Then come the biggest games of the day. At least, in terms of the attention that both games are getting and what’s at stake. First the Packers are Chicago to decide who wins the NFC North and who goes to the playoffs. News broke yesterday and Aaron Rodgers is in fact going to start on Sunday. Scary thought for Chicago and scary for anyone facing the Packers going forward, should they make the playoffs. I expect the Packers to win the game on Sunday mostly because Rodgers makes that much a difference for Green Bay. As does Tony Romo for the Cowboys. But unfortunately for Cowboys like myself around the country, it was confirmed about an hour ago that Romo did undergo (successfulback surgery and will miss Sunday’s do-or-die game against the Eagles for the division title. I’m hoping the Cowboys play with heart against an Eagles team that looked unstoppable last weekend but I expect Philadelphia to come out on top after Sunday night’s game ends.

Enjoy the action packed Sunday everyone because it will be while before we have all the teams playing again.

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Looking back at the week 16 games; NFL stocks for this week

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The 2013 NFL season has involved a series of intersecting story lines, from game to game, teams adjust to each and every one of them. If there’s been one theme or story line that seems to arise every week, it’s how unpredictable the league has become. Playoff bound teams lose to less than stellar opponents (Bills over Dolphins), evenly matched games result is blowout victories (Patriots and Eagles) when neither result could not have been expected, much less predicted. Arizona’s victory in Seattle didn’t shock me because the Cardinals defense has been among the league’s best and their team as a whole has been grossly underrated. Yes, CenturyLink Field is the hardest place to play as a road team but the Cardinals visit at least once a season. If any team is capable of breaking a home streak, like the one Seattle had before yesterday’s loss, it’s going to be a division opponent who knows that team well enough. The Cardinals weren’t the only team with an impressive victory yesterday. In fact, several playoff bound teams looked great yesterday. Peyton Manning’s record breaking performance led the Broncos to an impressive win over a bad Texans team while the Patriots somehow keep winning. Am I the only who thinks Tom Brady deserves the MVP this season? Manning will most likely get the award but put me in the Brady camp because I don’t even recognize half of the guys that the Patriots are playing with. Surprisingly enough, the Patriots 41 points on the Ravens were only the 3rd highest points from yesterday’s games. Andy Dalton and Bengals had the type of dominant win that injects confidence into a team now that they’ve officially clinched a playoff spot. But even they weren’t the most potent offense yesterday. That title goes to the Eagles, who scored 54 points in what was a beat down on the Chicago Bears. Is anyone surprised that the Eagles-Cowboys game next week was flexed to Sunday night? Let’s move on to the little things that stuck out to me yesterday:

Stock UP: Tony Romo’s clutch gene on the road; Mat McBriar (former Cowboy) because I love trick plays; the Bills giving it 100% for their fans in the final home game for Buffalo this season; Andy Dalton’s monster (4 TDs) performance yesterday; the Colts’ statement win in Arrowhead; the Jets continuing their flip-flop season; Carolina’s impressive win over New Orleans to clinch a playoff spot; Zac Stacy’s chances of being an elite running back for the future; Tom Brady’s road “shakyness”; LeSean McCoy and the Philly offense in general.

Stock DOWN: the Dolphins and Ravens, unable to take a stronghold of the second AFC wild card; Redskins special teams and their home crowd; Kansas City’s offense after their first drive; the Saints offense on the road; Cleveland’s underrated defense (at least I thought they were); Seattle’s home field advantage being a sure thing; Miami’s offensive line; Baltimore’s defensive front against a good QB; Detriot’s tailspin, stemming from the second week of November; Jay Cutler’s chances of getting a huge contract from the Bears.

Sorry fans of the Atlanta Falcons, tonight is not about your team. Final regular-season home game for the 49ers in Candlestick Park. A place with filled with history and tradition. Lots of 49ers greats will be there tonight (Montana, Rice etc.) as the Niners players and fanbase bid farewell to their stadium. I expect the 49ers to roll all over a bad Falcons team and secure their spot in the postseason.

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Ravens edge out the Lions; ranking the top 5 teams in the NFL

Lions vs. Ravens

Who says that you need touchdowns to win a game in the NFL? On the road and trying to stay in the driver’s seat for a wild card spot, along with an outside shot at the division, Baltimore was able to do so. The Ravens jumped on Justin Tucker’s back (leg) as he made six field goals, including a 61-yard for the go-ahead score in the final minute. Is there any doubt that he swung thousands of fantasy leagues last night and the few weeks past? Tucker has been on fire lately and John Harbaugh’s decision to let his kicker attempt from 61 yards was the right call. The Ravens offense looked very stale at certain points but they did enough to get in range for field goal after field goal. The first quarter was all Detroit, getting an early touchdown but from there, things just didn’t click on offense. Weird to say that when the Lions have the kinds of weapons that they do. Stafford’s three interceptions are glaring on the stat sheet but the Lions shot themselves in foot multiple times in the game. A dropped pass here, a bad penalty given up there. Joe Flacco was quite opposite of that, not dominating the stat sheet but instead limiting his mistakes while doing just enough for Baltimore to get into field goal range. It was a very important victory for Baltimore, needing to win against the Lions because their next two games will both be tough. With a bit of luck this coming weekend, they could be in position to play for the division title against Cincy when week 17 rolls around. The Lions loss gives the division back to the Bears but with a favorable schedule, they could be back on top as soon as this coming weekend. It’s just the silver lining because losing four of your last five is not the way a team wants to head into the final two weeks with the playoff hopes on the line.

Interesting weekend for some of the top teams in the NFL. Five division leaders (Broncos, Patriots, Bengals, Saints and Eagles) all lost their games this weekend. The stakes were a bit higher in the AFC, where none of the teams just mentioned were able to take advantage of the results. But despite those losses, are the Broncos and Patriots BOTH among the best five teams in the league. Unfortunately for Brady and co, their injury plagued team doesn’t make the cut this time around. Seattle is the clear #1 once again, dominating on the road this past Sunday en route to securing the top seed in the conference. After the Seahawks, it gets a bit complicated because the argument is how to rank established record versus positive momentum in the past few weeks. Denver is coming off a loss but because they hold the tie breaker over the Chiefs (the hottest team in the conference), the Broncos get the edge there. The same goes for the Saints, coming off a puzzling loss and going into Carolina this weekend. I’m giving the edge to the Panthers as the second best team in the conference because despite not owning the tie breaker over New Orleans, they still control their own destiny. The winner of that massive game this weekend will all but seal their spot for a second seed in the conference along with a first round bye. Right, in order, i’d say it’s: Seahawks, Broncos, Panthers, Chiefs and Saints. That does leave out the 49ers, a team firing on all cylinders but because they lose tie breakers to both the Saints and Panthers, they don’t make the cut this time. It’s going to be crazy watching all of the best teams in the league sort each other out in the last couple of weeks. The only downside to that previous sentence is that, as stated, there are only two weeks left in the regular season. Let’s just enjoy these last two precious weeks as much as we can.

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Surprises from Sunday’s games; stocks around the NFL

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Raiders fans keeping it classy after Charles scores

December in the NFL is known as crunch time. The part of the season where teams really show how much they want to be a part of the postseason and what kind of form they’re going to be in; if and when that time comes. So with the most important part of the season upon us, we’re going to get some expected and unexpected things. We expected the Seahawks to dominate and inch closer to their goal of locking down the top seed in the NFC. We expected the Chiefs to also dominate a bad Raiders team on the road. Luckily for myself, it seems like i’m the only person in the world that didn’t go up against Jamaal Charles (pictured above) in their fantasy football playoffs. Aside from Charles’ barrage of TDs, what else happened in yesterday’s games that jumped off the page? I’m actually a bit proud of myself for predicting the Dolphins’ upset over the injury-plagued Patriots. Things were set up for another classic Brady comeback but the Dolphins defense held their town, staying alive for the second wild card spot in the AFC. At this point, a meltdown by the Cowboys isn’t unexpected but yesterday’s loss to the Packers was ridiculous even by the Cowboys’ standards. I’ll just leave it at that because the pain is still there. Where did this Rams team come from? I know the Saints are much better at home but St. Louis is also indoors. Just as impressive/surprising was the Vikings thrashing the Eagles, putting up 48 points without their best player. Philadelphia still controls their own destiny but it was still a game where Matt Cassel exposed the Eagles defense. Who else is feeling good after yesterday’s games?

Stock UP: Dan Bailey as the only bright spot among the Cowboys; once again, anything to do with Jamaal Charles and his claim to the best RB in the game; relatively unknown player Matt Asiata; Seattle’s defense looking just as good on the road against a bad team; this pass by Colin Kaepernick to Vernon Davis; Matt Forte’s running (24 car, 127 yds) despite not being able to find the endzone; Matt Flynn and Eddie Lacy in the second half; the Steelers at home and not rolling over in a division game; Houston’s tanking efforts.

Stock DOWN: Speaking of Houston, anything to do with their offense; only to be out “shined” by Eli Manning (5 picks) and the Giants offense; Geno Smith’s decisions when the Jets need some sort of comeback; on a weekly basis, the Colts first half against a terrible Texans team; these two plays by the Bucs and Dolphins special teams; the Jaguars defense against a mobile QB like EJ Manuel; as mentioned above, the Saints offense outside of the Super Dome; the entire second half yesterday by my Dallas Cowboys; the Bengals chances of getting one of the top two seeds in the conference.

A couple of 7-6 teams going at it for tonight’s Monday night game. The Lions are trying to get the division lead back now that the Bears and Packers have really turned up the pressure on them. Detroit has not been playing good football lately, losing three of their last four but this is a chance to turn that around. Baltimore, on the other hand, has been playing surprisingly good football as of late. The Ravens are riding a three game win streak as they try to take back the second wild card position and keep their division title hopes alive. I like the Ravens (+6) with the points but i’m hesitant to take them straight up, mostly because the game is in Detroit. Lions win a close one over the Ravens in what looks to be a solid game.

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Chargers surprise the Broncos; questions for Sunday’s NFL games

San Diego Chargers v Denver Broncos

Have the Chargers figured out the way to stop the Broncos and their seemingly unstoppable offense? Let’s take a quick timeout and realize two things: 1. Teams aren’t going to be that successful against the Broncos on a regular basis. 2. San Diego is clearly just a bad match up for the Broncos. It’s frustrating to watch the Chargers do so well on the road against a Super Bowl contender after they’ve had such sloppy losses against teams like the Bengals, Redskins or Dolphins. Or at least we consider Denver to be a serious contended for the title come February. Are the cold weather questions back for Peyton Manning? It was evident that Manning was focused on making “easy passes” for most of the night, never really going past 15 or 20 yards down field. Was lack of rest a factor for the Broncos? Remember, no Wes Welker last night and the Chargers defensive backs did a nice job of limiting most of the Denver attack. It didn’t appear that way to start the game after Manning led the Broncos to a relatively easy drive for a quick TD. San Diego didn’t respond until the second quarter but once the response came, it was all downhill for the Chargers. Philip Rivers led the offense with a couple of TD passes to Keenan Allen (pictured above) while the Chargers offense controlled the clock for the entire game. San Diego had the ball for nearly twice the time that Denver did, keeping the Broncos offense on the sidelines, watching as the Chargers continued long drive after long drive. The Chargers looked and performed like a team who’s season was on the line. Now they turn to this Sunday’s games where they try to get some help from the Patriots and the Lions, hoping to tie the Ravens and Dolphins for that final spot in the AFC side of the playoffs. For Denver the road gets a little tougher in trying to nab the top seed in the conference because if the Patriots win out, they own the tie breaker over Denver. Easier said than done for a Patriots team dealing with so many injuries but either way it makes the AFC race that much more interesting.

One would think that because of what’s happening to Denver and New England that the Bengals have a shot for the top spot. It’s a stretch, considering that all three teams have favorable games to end the season but it the Patriots were to slip this weekend, it would make things exciting to watch. Unfortunately all of the early games that aren’t Patriots-Dolphins won’t have many implications where both teams have playoff stakes on the line. Here’s the underlining secret though, most of the favorites will be on the road for Sunday’s games. What does that mean? I think, for the most part, that games thought to be lopsided will be closer than usual. As we’ve seen in the past, at this point of the season a lot of teams that aren’t really playing for anything come out with nothing to lose. Just go play football. It’s a cliche but it does hold some value, even if it’s only for a neutral fan like myself, hoping for closer and more entertaining games. Will Cutler’s return affect a Bears offense that looked great on Monday night? Can the Seahawks look dominant on the road against the Giants? Can the Colts FINALLY get off to a good start against a really bad Texans team? Will the Eagles and 49ers take care of business on the road against an inferior opponent? And really, the same goes for the Chiefs, Panthers, Cardinals and Saints who are all facing less-than-great teams. Will my Cowboys take advantage of what looks like a Rodgers-less Packers team? If the Cowboys defense has any hope of bouncing back after an abysmal performance, it’s against the Packers when Rodgers isn’t there. The latest reports indicate that #12 will not be behind center for Sunday’s game.

It seems a bit easy to do so but I don’t care, i’m taking advantage of a depleted Patriots team on the road against the Dolphins (+2.5) this week for upset pick. The Dolphins are fighting for the second wild card spot while the Patriots are fighting to stay off the IR list. Can Brady still continue to lead the Patriots despite all of that? There’s no doubt but for all signs point to the Dolphins here. Teams usually have a tough time playing in Miami to begin with so i’m just taking the nice odds here. The Dolphins keep it very close and quite possibly win the game.

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Bears overpower the Cowboys; figuring out the race for the #1 pick

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Like most people, I was surprised that Mike Ditka’s number was being retired during halftime of last night’s game between the Cowboys and Bears. Not being Ditka doesn’t deserve it. I was just surprised that it had taken this long for the Bears to do so. Just a great night for Bears fans because not only did they honor one of their most important figures but their team also dominated an overwhelmed Cowboys team. Chicago’s offense was completely dominant from start to finish, as the Cowboys had no answer to any part of their attack. The first half was fairly even, both teams trading blows up until halfway through the second quarter. That was when the Bears made some big plays and things started to go downhill for Dallas. John McCown’s pass to Alshon Jefferey to end the half was very indicative of how bad the Cowboys defense has been throughout the season, particularly the secondary. Anytime the Cowboys were able to get Chicago in a 3rd & long, there was Brandon Marshall to combo with Jefferey and get the first down. Did I forget to mention that the Bears running game did it’s job? Chicago also held the ball for what seemed like the entire 3rd quarter where they took a lead that was too much for the Cowboys to come back from. It’s just another game that proves that the Cowboys always zig when everyone expects them to zag. Last night’s cold temperatures clearly favored the Bears, overwhelming the Cowboys in every facet of the game. What’s next for the Bears? Well they’re tied with Lions atop their division but because of losses to Detroit this season, they’re going to need the Lions to slip. The Cowboys essentially lose all possibilities of a wild card berth so it’s time for Dallas to hope for an Eagles loss to back the division lead.

Last night’s teams are fighting for a spot in the postseason but there is also a battle between some of the worst teams in the league. Normally i’m not that into the draft, mostly because the Cowboys always have a middle of the road pic that they manage to screw up. Enough about my sorrows because there are teams racing for a franchise guy this season. Right now the Texans, at 2-11, are in the driver’s seat to land the first pick in the draft and acquire a big player in what looks to be a loaded draft. But will they finish in last place? All signs point to yes. This weekend they’re Indy, playing against a Colts team that’s out to prove that they’re worthy of being in the playoffs. This it’s Denver, where Manning and friends could be trying to clinch home field throughout the playoffs. Second worst team in the league right now are the Redskins, who are a franchise in shambles. The only problem is that they don’t get their pick this season because of the trade they made with the Rams for RG3. Their opponent this weekend? The Falcons, who, for whatever reason, are still trying to compete in games. Despite the fact that they’re in prime position to land the second pick of the draft. Hey Atlanta, after being so bad for your fans all season long, try doing something for them this weekend just take the loss. The Jaguars are next up but all of a sudden, they’re winning 3 of 4 with a real shot to finish the season with 6 wins. Who could have predicted that? By the end of the season I expect the Raiders and Vikings to be rounding out the bottom 5.

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