Week 17 should be the grand finale but this is the biggest season of all time so this is but the second to last act. Let’s run through the 17th Sunday in the NFL.
Chicago Bears 29- New York Giants 3
I would like to congratulate you dear reader on finishing your Sunday with more passing yards than the New York Giants. When it was all said and done, Mike Glennon and the Giants amassed -10 passing yards en route to continuing their embarrassment tour of America. Don’t let the 29 points put up by the Bears fool you though, this should still be Matt Nagy’s last season at the helm of the organization, which Justin Fields should be thanking his lucky stars for. And if you missed it, Joe Judge gave an impassioned speech post game defending the Giants organization even though he’s the one actively dragging it through the mud.
New England Patriots 50- Jacksonville Jaguars 10
Sorry NFL, the Patriots are back in the playoffs after a brief one-year hiatus, and they punched their ticket with an emphatic thumping of the Jags. In the battle of the first and last QB taken in the first round of this past draft, Jones truly showed that sometimes being a “phenom” isn’t enough, it’s just a matter of being insulated in a system built to make a young quarterback successful. One can only imagine the conversation that went down between Jones and Bellichick on the sideline that led to the world seeing a rare Bill smile mid game but I like to think it went something along the lines of The Hoodie asking Mac how happy he was to not have gone first overall.
Los Angeles Rams 20- Baltimore Ravens 19
It wasn’t a two-point conversion decision that did the Ravens in this week, but it was more of the same heartbreak for the shorthanded Baltimore side. Huntley had the Ravens in a position for an upset until Stafford overcame his own demons to lead the comeback. But in a game that saw OBJ punch an opponent in the bum and two Rams locking horns on the sidelines, there may still be more questions than answers in the City of Angels.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers 28- New York Jets 24
In case you missed it amid the circus on the sideline, Brady did lead a successful comeback against the low-flying Jets with a backup cast of characters. It was Cyril Grayson who caught the go-ahead game winner and who may be called on moving forward as the Bucs announced they will be moving on from Brown.
Buffalo Bills 29- Atlanta Falcons 15
We get it Buffalo, you can win a million and one ways (except in the rain against New England).
Cincinnati Bengals 34- Kansas City Chiefs 31
Who Dey? Dey the Kings of the North is Who Dey is. With a hard fought win over Mahomes and the Chiefs the Bengals earned their first division title since 2015 (and this season they look like they might have the talent and coaching to make a run with it). Despite Ja’Marr Chase’s utter dominance this one did come down to a nail biting end as the Bengals took about six stabs at fourth and goal thanks to penalties before kicking a game-winning kick as time expired.
Tennessee Titans 34- Miami Dolphins 3
Well that was a nice little run for the Dolphins. After becoming the first team in NFL history to have both losing and winning streaks of seven games, Miami rode the expressway to Humble Town to meet the Titans. It got ugly, and fast, as the Titans plunged their swords into the AFC’s lone bye spot atop the division.
Las Vegas Raiders 23- Indianapolis Colts 20
Against all odds, the fired-our-coach-our-best-receiver-is-a-criminal-and-we-cut-our-best-safety Raiders still control their own playoff destiny. Even with all that happened in the middle of the season, and the Colts getting a lucky break with a change in CDC guidelines allowing their QB to start on Sunday, Vegas just needs to beat the Chargers next week and will have successfully dragged themselves into the playoffs.
Philadelphia Eagles 20- Washington Football Team 16
If you thought 2022 was going to be any less of a backwards year you can let go of that thought now because there will be two teams from the NFC Least competing in this year’s playoffs. With their win over the Football Team (can we please change that “name” this year??), the Eagles have flown back to meaningful January football, and as long as no more railings break on top of their star-QB, they should get there all in one piece.
Los Angeles Chargers 34- Denver Broncos 13
The Broncos had three different guys attempt a pass throughout this game so it’s only a matter of time before we see John Elway make his way down from his box seat. As for the other sideline, it was the Herby Show yet again as the sophomore quarterback has his Chargers within striking distance of the postseason. They just need to beat those Raiders we talked about earlier.
San Francisco 49ers 23- Houston Texans 7
Another rookie QB duel saw the heralded first rounder flash signs of promise in place of Jimmy G. Trey Lance’s two touchdowns and 249 yards kept the 49ers in the race in what has become the wildly unpredictable NFC. The real star of the show though was the kid that ran onto the field for some face time with Kyle Shananhan, but did nothing except startle the coach before being escorted away, presumably to the same Uber ride as Antonio Brown.
Seattle Seahawks 51- Detroit Lions 29
Better luck next season, Detroit!
Arizona Cardinals 25- Dallas Cowboys 22
It was in the locker rooms of AT&T Stadium that Kliff Kingsbury found out via Twitter that he was out as Texas Tech’s head coach. Safe to say he’s landed on his feet as the young bench boss now finds himself in the conversation for Coach of the Year with his team having clinched a playoff spot. While the Cowboys took issue with the officiating, the Cardinals pulled it together enough to be able to win a close game, something that the team that had been showing up these last few weeks wasn’t a given.
New Orleans Saints 18- Carolina Panthers 10
In the battle of teams whose quarterback depth chart is just a bunch of question marks, it was the human joystick Taysom Hill who led his team to the win. What we do know is that the Jameis Winston injury is proving to be the biggest loss of the season in terms of what he can do for his team, meaning the Saints should throw enough money around next season to get him to stay (or land a bigger fish).
Green Bay Packers 37- Minnesota Vikings 10
Did anyone else miss the memo that Aaron Rodgers bought an ownership stake in another NFC North team?
Has your team clinched a playoff spot? How did your fantasy season play out? Let us know on Twitter!