Not a terrible way to end the season, not a big winner, but a winner nonetheless! The playoffs are just around the corner, and I’ll certainly be getting my picks out for those games by mid-week as well. As for week 17, it was good for some, that’s for sure – but it was a heck of a lot worst for most of those teams with playoff dreams… This is how it went down.
Oakland Raiders (+14) @ Tampa Bay Buccaneers: (WINNER) Well, the Raiders upended the Bucs playoff hopes, opening the door for the Eagles to run the Cowboys and take the 6 seed. Like I said, Oakland does their best work against smaller defense, not unlike the Bucs. 14 points was way too many, ha.
Detroit Lions (+10.5) @ Green Bay Packers: (WINNER) Well, they couldn’t pull off the win, allowing one or two too many big plays down the stretch, but this game was close, and the 10 points difference writes a different story. Either way, the Lions covered for me.
Dallas Cowboys (+2) @ Philadelphia Eagles: (Loss) I was dead wrong here. The Eagles came to play, and everything worked out for them to own the final playoff spot. Do they keep their go for it attitude and make a run at the NFC crown or will they parish into their play not to lose alternate personality? Good question, I know, but they kicked some Cowboys tail this Sunday! I lose.
New York Giants (+7) @ Minnesota Vikings: (WINNER) The Giants should have won this game, but they didn’t really go for the throat and they let the Vikings hang around. Either way both these teams were in the playoffs, with the same seed, but Minnesota might come out of this one with a little more hope. AP had a big day for the Vikings. But I still won this one easily.
Chicago Bears (+3) @ Houston Texans: (Loss) “I love the Texans. They play very tough at home, and I see them throwing the ball around against the Bears secondary – but how about the will to win? The Bears have that. I hate betting on teams that won last weak where I thought they should have lost. That’s the Bears to a T. But what about the will?” – Here’s my answer – the will isn’t strong enough to go against my betting rules. When I learn that I’ll win more.
Carolina Panthers (-3) @ New Orleans Saints: (Loss) Well, this one was close. The Panthers wanted a suer thing bye, but the Saints weren’t about to roll over for them. Drew Brees was on his game, finishing just shy of Marino’s single season yardage record. The Siants pulled it out, but by just enough to make me a loser, 2….
St. Louis Rams (+15.5) @ Atlanta Falcons: (WINNER) I had this one right on the button – I hope the Falcons keep finding ways to win with a big playoff game coming up next week. What a rushing attack in Week 17, Turner and Norwood did work.
Kansas City Chiefs (+3) @ Cincinnati Bengals: (Loss) The Bengals really learned to play some defense as the season moved forward. If they keep that up next year, they might be alright. The Chiefs didn’t impress me much, and as it turns out I may have expected a little too much out of a 2 win team.
Jacksonville Jaguars @ Baltimore Ravens (-12): (WINNER) I was right on the button with this one too. The Ravens are a terrible match-up for the Jaguars, or at least this Jaguars team. Baltimore’s tough nosed, grind it out style, with the ability to get first downs through the air, was just too much for the Jags.
Tennessee Titans (-3) @ Indianapolis Colts: (Loss) Weird game. The Titans didn’t do much, and it looked like the Colts turned into the team I thought Tennessee was. Both teams had their 2nd teamers in there, but it was the Colts that dominated from the get go, and they rode their momentum all game long.
Cleveland Browns @ Pittsburgh Steelers (-10): (WINNER) The Steelers lost Big Ben in a meaningless game, but hopefully he’ll be alright for the playoffs. They dominated the Browns, though, putting up 31 and shutting out Cleveland’s anemic offense. I needed this one.
Miami Dolphins (+3) @ New York Jets: (WINNER) “If the Jets’ play calling is stupid enough for them to lose at home to Denver, in San Francisco, and then in Seattle in 3 of their last 4 games, then it is probably bad enough to choke this one away too. I don’t know about the average football mind, but if I had an old quarterback that got respect on his deep passes, one that was having shoulder issues, I would probably run the ball more than I threw it. If the Jets did that, they’d have won against the Hawks last week. They would have beaten the 49ers as well. But Man-Jina loves to throw the ball, regardless of the auto five yards Thomas Jones is getting and the great back-up speedster they have in Leon Washington. All things being equal, that stupidity should get Miami into the playoffs.” As soon as the Jets are down at all, they immediately turn to throwing the ball every single down. Their play calling sucks. Miami was the better team by season’s end, and that’s because their coaching is much better. There you have it. Hooray Miami! Hooray me!
New England Patriots (-6) @ Buffalo Bills: (WINNER) It was windy, it was nuts – the Patriots held on to the ball as long as possible and made some great moves that kept Buffalo out of the end zone. They won a big game, finished 11-5, but still found themselves up and out of the playoffs.
Seattle Seahawks @ Arizona Cardinals (-6): (WINNER) “I have to pick this game as if the last couple weeks didn’t happen to the Cardinals. The Cardinals are 6 points better than Seattle, especially at home, and especially after getting slammed each of the last two weeks. They have to get it together now or never, and I think their offensive firepower will be tough for the Hawks to handle. Big tough receivers aren’t the easiest on the little coverage guys in Seattle’s secondary.” There you have it. And it was Kurt and his crew of big receivers tormenting the Hawks secondary all day long, especially late. Larry Fitzgerald had a big day, catching two touchdowns in the process. Yhatzee!
Washington Redskins (+3) @ San Francisco 49ers: (PUSH) For the second straight week the 49ers found a way to win. They were down, but not out, and it might be Big Mike. I hope Singletary is exactly what the 49ers need to get back to respectability. Winning a bunch of games down the stretch probably helped them out a ton heading into next season. I didn’t win or lose, just pushed all the way to my money back on this one.
Denver Broncos (+9.5) @ San Diego Chargers: (Loss) This game was awesome – if you hate Denver. I thought the Broncos would put up more of a fight, but this was consistent with the entire season, I once again had trouble predicting the Broncos. That damn Splinter is always confusing me.
9-6-1 to finish – 23 games up on the season…