The Baltimore Ravens have won four of five to creep back into the playoff hunt.
Twelve teams are in the hunt for three open playoff spots. Five of those teams have sub .500 records. The biggest logjam is in the AFC where six teams are fighting for one spot. I don’t know about you, but I can’t wait until the mathematical probabilities are released in about a week.
Thursday December 12, 2013 8:25 pm:
San Diego Chargers (6-7) at Denver Broncos (11-2) – Wes Welker is still hearing birds chirping, so it looks like Eric Decker could be in line for a big game. The Chargers are on their last leg and need a miracle. The elements and a hot-handed Manning suddenly work well together — which means bad news for the Bolts.
Broncos 31 – Chargers 23
Sunday December 15, 2013. Games beginning at 1:00 pm:
DC (3-10) at Atlanta Falcons (3-10) – Kirk Cousins begins his three game audition on the road against a generous Falcons defense. Roddy White and Tony Gonzalez are questionable for Sunday.
Falcons 24 – DC 16
San Francisco 49ers (9-4) at Tampa Bay Buccaneers (4-9) – The Niners are back to business as usual after a great performance last week against Seattle. The Bucs bounced back with a nice win on the road in Buffalo. Frank Gore has rounded himself into playoff mode.
Niners 24 – Bucs 10
Seattle Seahawks (11-2) at NY Giants (5-8) – Seattle is on a cross-country flight and recovering from a tough division loss. The Giants are going to somehow win this ugly game. Tom Coughlin’s teams need a stake through the heart or a silver bullet to take them out.
Giants 19 – Seahawks 14
Philadelphia Eagles (8-5) at Minnesota Vikings (3-9-1) – This is the Eagles most important game other than their season finale against Dallas. The Vikings have played everyone tough for the past month. Matt Cassell, Toby Gerhart and Cordarrelle Patterson could have big days. I like the Birds, but stranger things have happened.
Eagles 27 – Vikings 17
New England Patriots (10-3) at Miami Dolphins (7-6) – Just when things got rolling for the Pats, Rob Gronkowski goes down for the season with a shredded knee. New England is 3-3 on the road and Miami is no better at home. The Dolphins could steal this one.
Dolphins 24 – Patriots 22
Buffalo Bills (4-9) at Jacksonville Jaguars (4-9) – I guess no one wants the No. 1 overall pick. The Jaguars have been playing tough, winning four of their last five. The Bills are 1-5 on the road.
Jaguars 28 – Bills 13
Houston Texans (2-11) at Indianapolis Colts (8-5) – The Colts need to gather themselves before they find themselves playing on wild card weekend. The Texans need to gather some momentum or anything resembling it.
Colts 27 – Texans 10
Chicago Bears (7-6) at Cleveland Browns (4-9) - Call me crazy, but Josh McCown should be under center if the Bears make the postseason. The Browns have become fun to watch, thanks to Josh Gordon.
Bears 23 – Browns 15
Games beginning at 4:05 or later:
Kansas City Chiefs (10-3) at Oakland Raiders (4-9) – Terrelle Pryor has been all but shut down for the season, ditto Darren McFadden. The Chiefs look great against DC last week, but can’t afford to sleep on Oakland at home.
Chiefs 28 – Raiders 14
New York Jets (6-7) at Carolina Panthers (9-4) – The Saints got off Cam Newton last week and the Jets defense is capable of doing the same. Problem for the Jets is their offense is no match for the Panthers defense.
Panthers 30 – Jets 12
Green Bay Packers (6-6-1) at Dallas Cowboys (7-6) – If this game were in Green Bay, I would like the Pack’s chances. The Cowboys offense played well enough to win. The defense has to make amends for their dismal performance.
Cowboys 27 – Packers 13
Arizona Cardinals (8-5) at Tennessee Titans (5-8) – This is Arizona’s best chance for a win with games remaining at Seattle and at home against San Francisco.
Cardinals 24 – Titans 21
New Orleans Saints (10-3) at St. Louis Rams (5-8) – The Saints offense got back on track at home. Much shouldn’t change this week on the road against the Rams since they’re indoors.
Saints 31 – Rams 17
Cincinnati Bengals (9-4) at Pittsburgh Steelers (5-8) – The Steelers will have something to say about the Bengals winning the division on their home field. A.J. Dalton has been up and down for most of the season, but last week may have been his breakthrough.
Steelers 28 – Bengals 27
December 16, 2013 8:40 pm:
Baltimore Ravens (7-6) at Detroit Lions (7-6) – The Lions have to play through their turnover woes while trying to regain control of the NFC North. Baltimore has finally awaken from their Super Bowl stupor to become relevant again.
Ravens 27 – Lions 23
Last Week: 9-6
2013 Season: 108-76-1