While Santa and his elves were making final preparations, packing up the sleigh, and blitzing around the globe to deliver gifts to good boys and girls, teams in the NFL were blocking, passing and blitzing to make this a Christmas to remember. Some of them got nice gifts and others were left with a lump of coal.
NFL Week 16: The Gifts…
The New England Patriots blew out Buffalo 34 -3 and secured home-field advantage throughout the playoffs. So, the AFC playoffs will go through Gillette Stadium in Foxborough, Massachusetts. Tom Brady continued to demonstrate why he is the highest paid player in the NFL. He extended the NFL record to 8 consecutive games with two or more touchdown passes and no interceptions. He has now thrown 319 passes without any interceptions.
The Lions went down to sunny Miami and won. They came back from a deficit of 10 points and beat the Dolphins 34 – 27 on the road. The victory gave the Lions their third win a row – something that they have not had since 2007. Motown should be singing and dancing this holiday season.
At Soldier Field, Chicago got a quick 10-point lead against the New York Jets. After a scoreless first quarter, the Jets’ offense came alive, scoring 24 points in the second quarter. The lead did not last long. After halftime, the Bears returned and took the lead again. The Jets fought back but a Mark Sanchez interception sealed Chicago’s 38 – 34 victory. The Jets still secured a playoff spot. Thanks to a nice gift from the Washington Redskins. Their victory over the Jacksonville Jaguars confirmed a Wild-Card playoff spot for the Jets.
The Baltimore Ravens, Kansas City Chiefs and Philadelphia Eagles also secured playoff spots over Christmas Weekend.
NFL Week 16: Lumps of Coal…
While Philadelphia is going to the playoffs because they clinched the NFC East division title, Mother Nature is not being nice to the Eagles. Due to a blizzard in Philadelphia, they did not play the Minnesota Vikings yesterday. The game will be played on Tuesday night. This means that the Eagles will play three games in just 12 days.
The New York Giants had six turnovers in their loss to the Green Bay Packers. The defense allowed four touchdown passes from Aaron Rodgers who just returned after suffering a concussion. The Giants will have to put playoffs on their wish list for next Christmas.
San Francisco 49ers Head Coach Mike Singletary was fired last night. After two disappointing seasons, the organization relieved him of his duties with just one game left to go. I think that was more like a ton of coal.
Are you ready for some football?
Tonight MNF heads south to the Georgia Dome for its finale. It is a divisional rivalry game between the New Orleans Saints and Atlanta Falcons. Atlanta beat New Orleans earlier this year, so they are looking to win the series. They are already in the playoffs, but they have not clinched the NFC South title. At 12 – 2, with two games left, they could end the season tied with the Saints who are 10 – 4. This is what makes this game a “must watch.” A Saints victory would put them just one game behind the Falcons with the same conference record. A Falcon victory tonight, would guarantee them the NFC South title and home-field advantage for the NFC playoffs. Atlanta has not lost at home in over a year. The Saints demonstrated that they could not handle a strong running game last week when Baltimore’s Ray Rice ran all over them. Atlanta has someone stronger, running back Michael Turner. He is ranked #5 this year in the league with over 1,250 rushing yards. Two good teams, but the Saints defense will not be able to stop Atlanta passing and running. I’m going with Atlanta tonight.
MNF kicks off at 8:30 pm on ESPN. This week we are doing a special game watching party to support the Muskegon Rescue Mission. Join us this week as we tackle homelessness in West Michigan the only way we know how – with fashion and football!
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