Thursday, December 31, 2015
NFL - Week Seventeen Preview
The rest of the NFC is set as the Carolina Panthers and Arizona Cardinals will have the first round "byes" and the Washington Redskins are locked in at number-four as the East division champion. The two wild cards will be Seattle and the loser of the Minnesota at Green Bay game.
The AFC has New England, Denver, Cincinnati and Kansas City already in while the Pittsburgh Steelers, New York Jets, Houston Texans and Indianapolis Colts all are still vying for the final two playoff spots.
If the Jets win at Buffalo, they are in as a wild card team. The Steelers have to win and need the Jets to lose to get in. In the AFC South, Houston will win the division title (home game for them) if they beat the Jacksonville Jaguars. The Colts are on "life support" regarding the playoffs.
The Kansas City Chiefs have been one of the hottest teams in the NFL and are riding a nine game winning streak heading into their finale at home against Oakland. They can still win the AFC West if they win and the Denver Broncos lose at home to the lowly San Diego Chargers.
Got all that?
Once the action is finished up Sunday night, the teams and matchups will be set and the 2015 season will roll into the post-season and on toward Super Bowl 50 on February 7 in San Francisco.
The following offers a look at all of the games this week along with the Heftyinfo picks for the games.
New Orleans Saints (6-9) at Atlanta Falcons (8-7) - This should be a high scoring game between two former NFC South powers.
New York Jets (10-5) at Buffalo Bills (7-8) - Former Jets Coach Rex Ryan would love to stick it to his former team and keep them from making the playoffs.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers (6-9) at Carolina Panthers (14-1) - Panthers roll!
Detroit Lions (6-9) at Chicago Bears (6-9) - The battle to avoid the NFC North basement.
Baltimore Ravens (5-10) at Cincinnati Bengals (11-4) - Bengals still have a slim chance for a first round bye.
Pittsburgh Steelers (9-6) at Cleveland Browns (3-12) - The Steelers MUST put last week's devastating loss to Baltimore behind them.
Washington Redskins (8-7) at Dallas Cowboys (4-11) - Redskins just looking to get out of this game with no injuries to key players.
Jacksonville Jaguars (5-10) at Houston Texans (8-7) - Texans roll!
Tennessee Titans (3-12) at Indianapolis Colts (7-8) - Colts miserable season comes to a close.
Oakland Raiders (7-8) at Kansas City Chiefs (10-5) - The Chiefs have been amazing the last two months.
New England Patriots (12-3) at Miami Dolphins (5-10) - The Patriots are playing for something (number-one seed in AFC playoffs) and they will not be denied.
Philadelphia Eagles (6-9) at New York Giants (6-9) - Eagles Coach Chip Kelly coached his last game for the team, will the same hold true for Giants Coach Tom Coughlin following this one?
St. Louis Rams (7-8) at San Francisco 49ers (4-11) - The Rams should win this one and finish at .500 for the season.
San Diego Chargers (4-11) at Denver Broncos (11-4) - Broncos need a win to get a first round bye in AFC playoffs.
Seattle Seahawks (9-6) at Arizona Cardinals (13-2) - The Seahawks would love to stop Arizona's roll and it could happen.
Minnesota Vikings (10-5) at Green Bay Packers (10-5) - The final game of the regular season with the NFC North division title on the line.
The Heftyinfo picks for Week Seventeen . . . . . (Home teams are listed in BOLD; Lock of the Week is listed in BOLD CAPS)
Atlanta over New Orleans
Buffalo over NY Jets
CAROLINA over Tampa Bay
Detroit over Chicago
Cincinnati over Baltimore
Pittsburgh over Cleveland
Washington over Dallas
Houston over Jacksonville
Indianapolis over Tennessee
Kansas City over Oakland
New England over Miami
NY Giants over Philadelphia
St. Louis over San Francisco
Denver over San Diego
Seattle over Arizona
Green Bay over Minnesota
Last Week's Record: 8-8
SEASON RECORD: 162-78
Lock of the Week Record: 12-4