1. Carolina Panthers (1) – Super start for Carolina with a great pick 6 from Romo, add a nice FG and a double digit lead off the hop puts the Dallas season on life support. Can they pull the plug on Dallas? A half that could only be dreamed of by Panther fans. The D has been excellent grabbing not one but two pick sixes. Caaaaaaam is making the ball move and he has cashed in for 3 FG and with a 20-point lead at the half it would be a colossal collapse for the Best TEAM in the NFL to lose this game. A great 3rd quarter has put this game to bed. Caaaaaaam ran in the final nail in the coffin of the Cowboys hopes. A super win. This one is over, put out the lights in JerryLand. Great win by the best team.
2. Arizona Cardinals (3) – Arizona is a cat playing with a baby mouse. They are trying just hard enough to have a small lead and not even them mailing it in can have them trailing that ugly dressed group of wannabe NFLers. The Cardinals were busy this Holiday weekend going to the post office. The amount of stamps required to mail this in this badly must have cost a ton. The Cards didn’t block a poor excuse for a pop warner D for most of the game and managed somehow to just eke out a win. Ugly but perhaps this will quiet the growing sound of people calling this second best team in the NFC the best.
3. Minnesota Vikings (6) – The Vikings have brought a decent D and at times to good O to a critical battle in the NFC playoff race. Using Peterson and at time good throws and a D that has made the odd stop the Vikes have a small lead on the road at the half. They will need to make a supreme effort to win this real must win game. The Vikings D was able to keep the pressure on and held the Falcons to only a FG when it mattered and the rush attack dominated. A great win for Minnesota that solidifies their control as the best in the NFC North *as long as they don’t have to play GB to decide the division anymore*.
4. Denver Broncos (13) – Denver seemed to have trouble stopping Brady and Co until they were 2 TDs down and it looked like it was gonna be same old same old. Instead their special teams got a golden turnover and Brock Osweiler got it done. Osweiler used excellent passing and good use of the run to storm back and take the lead. The Bronco D was able to get great pressure on Brady and get him off his game. They did allow a late drive and went to OT. In OT the Bronc D showed its mettle and shut down NE and then Brock led his team to the winning TD. A great win for Denver. They have a QB now and he isn’t Peyton Manning. This should be Brock’s team going forward and Peyton can have a parade.
5. New England Patriots (2) – The Patriots got off to a good start in inclimate weather by getting 3 TDs against a solid Bronc D. The Pats seemed to have the game well in hand until their punt returner (a replacement for injury) fumbled and Denver capitalized quick. The Pats O quieted down and their D got whipped and found themselves down with only a minute left. They managed one more great drive and tied it but off to OT their O faltered and their D couldn’t do it and The Wicked Witch is dead. If Gronk is out a few weeks that will keep even their best cheating held down a bit. Lucky for them they play Philly next so that should be a walk in the park.
6. Indianapolis Colts (7) – Hasselbeck is operating efficiently early and has the Colts fully engaged in this game so far. The Colt D is playing pretty well here too. This game could come down to last team who scores wins. The Colts decided to score two of the last 3 scores and won this game handily. A solid win that was well played and keeps them in the lead in their bad division. Good win.
7. Kansas City Chiefs (8) – Terrible start for KC’s D put them down a couple of scores. Smith got the pass offense working and with a bit of running and the Chiefs have made this a game. It is critical for KC to win this one or they could find themselves on the outside looking in. The Chiefs were able to keep the pressure on, on both O and D and when challenged by Buffalo they answered. The last TD was the game winner and Kansas City continues to surprise with their dogged determination. A great win that helps put them in solid contention for a wild card spot.
8. Houston Texans (9) – Hoyer has shown exactly why he is where he is. He made one of the best QB plays in the first quarter for a TD and then later in the 2nd quarter he made one of the stupidest plays you can make as a QB. If he was consistently good, he would have been starting in the NFL right from the get go. The Texan D is playing well and the Texans are doing their part so far to try to keep their control of half of the lead in the bad AFC south. The Texans D took over and controlled the game. A pretty easy win for Houston and keeps them sorta tied for the lead in their division. Well they have the same record and on December 20th they could have one more shot at slaying their personal dragon. For now, a good win.
9. Seattle Seahawks (11) – Seattle is battling here but their D got scorched for a TD and now they must find a way to put more points on the board. Boy did Seattle find a way to put up points. What they did was run plays against Pittsburgh and but for being either unable to kick an extra point or convert a 2-point conversion they basically couldn’t be stopped. Wilson drove them to a much needed win and now Seattle has some tough contests ahead. Losing Graham to injury might help them chemistry wise. Tough match with Minnesota next as they keep battling for playoffs.
10. Pittsburgh Steelers (5) – Pittsburgh is battling hard in a tough place and being out to a small lead half way through is a great accomplishment. Can their D hold the lead? D? What D? There was precious little D found on either team today. The Steelers basically traded TD for TD with Seattle until the end when they couldn’t cover one last time and then gave up a pick and they were done. Pittsburgh now sits 3 spots out of Wild Card and need to tighten up this D to get back into it.
11. Green Bay Packers (5) – My how the mighty have fallen. Aaron Rodgers looked terrible, had his worst QB rating ever. Tossed more picks than Jay Cutler, had his running back fumble all over and then watched as the Packer D couldn’t stop the BEARS and now Green Bay has 4 losses, looks like a team in turmoil and no one is R-E-L-A-X-E-D. We may be watching the end of an era and I can’t help but smile to myself.
12. New York Jets (15) – Fitz is playing well at QB and in fact if he had better catches by his receivers then this game would be will in hand for New York. Decent O in the first half and not bad D has them in front in what used to be a tough division battle. The Jets rode this one hard and put it to bed early. They basically had it won by the end of the 3rd and prevented it out. A solid win that keeps them in the edge of the conversation for wild card talk in the AFC.
13. Washington Redskins (20) – Super start for Washington. Cousins hasn’t looked great but the results on the scoreboard is what counts. Solid first half D combined with productive O and the Skins find themselves 30 minutes from an unlikely place in their division…first. Washington let the Giants back into the game with some less than impressive D in the second half. Getting the chance to run out the clock they basically did and they won it. They looked great in the first half, ok in the second and now are unlikely as it seems, in first place. Washington holds their own destiny in their hands. I give them a 30% shot at winning their division.
14. New York Giants (10) – For a game that has first place in their division on the line, the Giants couldn’t really be playing worse. Eli has tossed two golden picks early and the Giants D can’t tackle or cover. Unless they mount a monumental come back they will find themselves under .500 and in 2ndplace in the terrible NFC East. The Giants finally found their energy and drove the team back to within one score. In a play that will be discussed for a least a few days they decided to kick it away instead of onside. Evidently Coach Coughlin thought he had the Cardinal D and not the Giant D. The Giants simply couldn’t make stop and they lost. A crushing loss that puts them on the outside and keeps the insane hopes of Cowboy apologists alive.
15. Oakland Raiders (19) – The Raiders seem to have brought their game to Tennessee and Carr has made more good plays than bad. The D isn’t playing badly either and Oakland is showing more effort this week than they have in a month. Well amazingly there was no quit in Oakland today. They were pushed down the field and fell behind late but then they showed heart rarely shown lately and drove for a winning score. This win kind of keeps their nose above water but for all intents and purposes it is still over for them but it was a good win.
16. Detroit Lions (18) – The Lions look like they ate a lot of Turkey early and were totally sleepy and undisciplined to start. When the O woke up they got something going and now have an early lead. Detroit D and O are rolling by the end of the first half and seem to have the game in control. Good play by Stafford *for a change*. Superb play by the Lion O and now it is not whether they put up a 40 burger but if they can put up a 50 burger. The Lions have turned things around but let’s not get Joe Buck carried away and start talking about their potential playoff hopes. I will say this, if they play Philadelphia every week for the rest of the year they can win out. Good win.
17. Chicago BEARS (21) – The Bears faced an impossible situation…terrible weather, Short week, Brett Favre retired jersey night, last Bart Starr appearance, Green Bay now on a roll again, Cutler always terrible here. What happens? A tremendous D performance that bred golden turnovers. When the offense had its chance it was Jay Cutler himself who slew his personal dragon. He led them to two great TDs and didn’t turn the ball over and then the D stood up in the last 2 minutes and held on for an improbable but incredible win. Does this win take the fork back out of Chicago? They may yet still have a pulse. They need to build off this amazing win. Great win.
18. Buffalo Bills (12) – Bills got off to a super start and pulled out to a huge lead. The D slowly let KC get back in the game and at the half the Bills find themselves in a dogfight for the edge in the AFC wild card battle. Can Buffalo find it in themselves to get this win? Nope. Buffalo battled in the second half and kept it close, they even seemed to have a shot at stealing this game but it was not to be. Once again the Bills D was not able to make the plays that were needed and down went Buffalo. This doesn’t end their season but it makes the road forward a lot more difficult than it would have been with a win. A very tough loss.
19. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (14) – The Bucs are finding themselves in a tough matchup against a pretty equally talented opponent. Martin is ripping it on the ground, Winston is making good throws but the D has been victimized more than once. The Buc D needs to see if they can get better without Kwon at MLB. Well Tampa really needed to turn it on in the second but couldn’t. Can’t help but think I was 100% right and Alexander being out has destroyed their ability. A bad loss that sets back their march to playoff contention and now they must try to see if they can recapture what may have been a fleeting moment for them.
20. Jacksonville Jaguars (16) – Good offense from Jacksonville which isn’t a surprise. Poor D, which is also not a surprise, has the the Jags trailing at home to a team they should be easily handling. They have to find a lot better effort on D or this could be a very long day for Jacksonville. This was a long day for Jacksonville. The D let them down and this loss coupled with wins by both Indy and Houston put them in a very difficult place now. I would suggest that despite mathematics, this team is done now.
21. Baltimore Ravens (22) – The Baltimore Ravens quickly got a taste of life under Matt Schaub. Mr. Pick Six lived up to his name with a nice pick six. The Ravens got out to an early lead in this game but then fell behind as their horrible defense made an appearance. The Ravens got back out in front, Schaub tossed his millionth pick six and then with the game tied and all they needed was to get it to their kicker…Schaub tossed another pick. The D let Cleveland get to within FG range and but through a miracle block and bounce they won. This does neither make them a playoff threat or any good. This is a terrible team and having Schaub leading them…. can you say pick six, pick six, pick six…?
22. Cincinnati Bengals (26) – Solid game for a struggling Bengals team. Dalton is having one of his good games, the D is making good turnovers. Facing at team that at times can quit better than anyone seems to be a good remedy for a skidding Cincy team. What will the 2nd half bring? The Bengals simply cruised to the easy win. One can’t make too much of this as they simply beat a really bad Ram team but the world will re-anoint this team as elite.
23. San Diego Chargers (32) – Rivers seems to have found the fountain of youth in the jungles of Jacksonville. The Bolt O is playing at the top of their game and the D has actually had moments of not sucking. So far the dirty play hasn’t appeared. If the Chargers keep this up they could win a game in this lost season. The Chargers Offense was able to score more than they have in a long time. The Charger D managed to make a few stops and get a couple of turnovers. In the end the Chargers did get a win here. This means nothing for anything but it is a win and shows they can care for a minute or two.
24. St. Louis Rams (17) – St. Louis is reduced to using a half healthy QB and he isn’t that good when he is 100%. The D is getting shredded early by the Bengals and Foles can’t get anything going. The Rams are in danger of being blown out here by the start of the 4th quarter. The Rams never got anything going but without a QB that isn’t a surprise. Totally manhandled, destroyed and defeated. This team once won a good game or two but now they can’t seem to win a quarter.
25. Miami Dolphins (24) – Tannehill tossed a pick, which he is wont to do lately. The Dolphins D is having issues getting the Jets under control. The effort here seems to be backsliding and the Dolphins need to really give it all they have in the second half to keep in this game. The Dolphins were run over and by the time NY took their foot off the gas it was a joke. Tannehill looked like pretty solid crap until prevent allowed him to put up hollow numbers. Another bad loss for a team desperately searching for direction. Where do thry go from here and is Tannehill part of their future?
26. Atlanta Falcons (25) – Atlanta’s D has had severe trouble stopping the run and even has had issues covering. The D needs to be a lot tighter in the 2nd half. Matty Melt has had issues but has managed to get a little production but must find a way to score or they could find themselves nearly out of the wild card and that would be so defining of this terrible team. The Falcon O never got anything going. Matty Melt simply melted away into a puddle. The Atlanta rushing D was ripped and torn by Minnesota generally and AP the child whipper specifically. A hard loss that could put this bad team where they belong which is outside the playoff hunt and looking in as they fall and fall and …. f…a…l…l…
27. New Orleans Saints (27) – Brees and his O can’t seem to get a lot of traction against a pretty resilient Texan D. The Saints D? terrible is a compliment for this awful D. They have been picked apart by Bryan Hoyer and that says something. If they can’t figure out how to stop the Texans, then this game is already over. Hmmm, I thought firing the D coordinator was going to fix all those D issues? Evidently it isn’t systemic but player based. The Saints just got schooled and never got the O going. A bad loss for a team that is rating the QB draft class in 2016.
28. Cleveland Browns (28) – Cleveland had issues keeping Baltimore down early then McCown got it going for a bit. Then McCown got killed again and Austin Davis Peay came in. The only team who has a small Texas college playing QB is Cleveland. Peay got them tied and Cleveland D got a few good picks *silver platter presented but they count* and got to within a shot at a FG from grabbing a win but it was blocked and it was hard luck loss. Good try. Now that McCown is done, what will Pettine do? Can he find John SMU to play with Austin Davis Peay or will John Manziel be brought out of liar’s purgatory?
29. Dallas Cowboys (23) – Great start for Romo tossing a pick six. Greg Hardy is a scumbag. Here’s hoping they will go quietly into the darkness of non-playoff land. Romo knew that he couldn’t let that one pick six define his first half…he added a second and tossed another pick for the sake of it. The Cowboy O is circling the bowl; the Cowboy D has held Carolina to 3 FG. Unfortunately, that is 3 more than Dallas has kicked. They are 30 minutes away from being eliminated from the playoffs. Start the preparations for the party now. The Cowboys have 15 minutes left before being officially eliminated by the playoffs. That is a technical fact. The Cowboys are done, their O has sucked, their D not much better. They have lost badly at home and it is funny. #HowBoutDemCowboys? lol
30. Tennessee Titans (30) – Tennessee is having some trouble stopping the big receivers for Oakland. Mariota is trying to find holes in the Oakland D and the Titans still have a shot in this game. The Titan D is the culprit here. Mariota took the team and drove the field and got them a lead with just about 4 minutes left. All they needed was the D to make a few stops. They didn’t. Another loss. I think they better concentrate on drafting D in 2016.
31. San Francisco 49ers (31) – I thought SF was just ugly in their play and coaching but they top it with uniform selection. Gabbert just plays to lose and the D does what it can with no talent. Down by only 3 at the half is their moral victory. The Niners used their ugly uniforms to distract Zona and get pressure on Palmer. Gabbert managed to complete a few passes and score a TD too. In the end they self-destructed with stupid penalties and when it counted they turned it over on downs. A ‘good’ effort in what is another loss for a bad, bad team.
32. Philadelphia Eagles (29) – The Eagles started out with a strong drive against a sleepy Det D and ended it with a missed FG. Then the bad Eagle D appeared and didn’t realize you had to cover a receiver in the end zone and now they trail. Eagles seem to have lost their mojo after one drive and now face a considerable challenge to not just be blown out in this game in the second half. It is barely into the 2nd half and Philly finds themselves down by 24 and have allowed 4 pass touchdowns already. They let in 5 last week but I am confident they can let in six at least. The Eagles are in the unique position of having problems on offense, no talent on defense and no ability at coaching. When Chip calls USC they may just hang up. A terrible team who now is battling for worst in the NFL. Troy Aikman quote of the day “Why would you want to show your face on TV today if you’re an Eagle” lol.
As always, I love all thoughts, comments, arguments or agreements. I appreciate someone reading my views. I would also offer my analysis work to ESPN as some of theirs need help or I will take cash, preferably tens and twenties!