The penultimate week of the NFL regular season brought some much-needed clarity to the playoff picture. While some last-minute playoff jostling still needs to be done, this year’s sinuous NFL regular season is just about over. I for one could not be happier as the only thing that is more exciting than NFL playoff football costs 25 dollars on the dark web.
Bengals win third straight, come from behind against the Chiefs
In a matchup that may very well serve as an AFC Championship preview, the Bengals rallied from behind to top the Chiefs 34-31. QB Joe Burrow continued on his scorching offensive spree, passing for 446 yards and four touchdowns. Three of those four touchdowns went to Burrow’s former college teammate and rookie sensation WR Jamar Chase, who broke the NFL rookie receiving yards record by posting 266 yards on 11 catches. Chase has all but locked up the Rookie of the Year Award, and has quieted all doubters after his extremely worrisome preseason. With the loss, the Chiefs fell out of first place in the AFC and will need a win and a Tennessee loss next week to gain a first-round bye.
Raiders edge out the Colts, set up win-and-you’re-in game vs the Chargers
It would be not far-fetched to say there has not been a more embattled team this year than the Las Vegas Raiders, having weathered a multitude of scandals that have redefined the gamut of impropriety. In typical Raider fashion, they did just enough to get the victory over the Colts and keep their playoff hopes alive. Kicker Daniel Carlson connected on a 33-yard field goal as time expired to improve the Raiders record to 9-7. Unheralded teams that embrace a never-say-die attitude as the Raiders have this season are often referred to as “teams of destiny” because otherworldly factors seem to intervene on their behalf. Now I wouldn’t call the Raiders a “team of destiny” by any means but if there were ever a “team whose season most closely resembles a Final Destination movie” the Raiders certainly have my vote. Both the Colts and the Raiders can secure a playoff berth next week by winning their respective matchups.
Titans deliver wake-up call to Dolphins, move into first place in the AFC
In a game that was being hailed as a litmus test for the red-hot Dolphins, the Dolphins were exposed as plagiarizing charlatans. The Titans rushed for nearly 200 yards on the ground and currently find themselves in first place in the AFC. The story of this game, though, was the Dolphins. They are the first team in NFL history to have a seven-game winning streak immediately following a seven-game losing streak, which is basically the football version of beer goggles. It is hard to appraise what the Dolphins need to do in order to finally reach relevance. It has been rumored that the Dolphins are interested in trading for scandal-tainted and uber-talented QB Deshaun Watson, but I can’t help but wonder if Watson would be rubbed the wrong way by being traded to the flagging Dolphins.
Pack your winter clothes, Packers clinch first seed in the NFC with win over the Vikings
The past two seasons have seen the Packers’ playoff hopes stall out in the NFC Championship game. Will the third time be the charm for Dr. Aaron Rodgers and company? With their 37-10 rout of the division rival Vikings on primetime, the Packers secured the first seed in the NFC and the highly desirable first-round bye. QB Aaron Rodgers, who seems like a lock for his second-straight MVP Award, effortlessly passed for 288 yards and two touchdowns. For as much controversy that has surrounded Rodgers this season, there is not much criticism that can be levied on his on-field performance. At 38 years old, he seems to be inexplicably hitting his prime. If the Packers executives were smart, they would swallow their pride and admit they made a costly mistake by drafting Jordan Love, a move Rodgers has voiced his displeasure over. The Packers should do anything they possibly can to convince Rodgers to stay in Green Bay. Some ideas I have are: Make Tuesday Tin Foil Hat Day, employ Joe Rogan as the team’s physician, and replace film sessions with showings of the movie franchise Divergent.