1. Arizona Cardinals (2) – The Cards dominated from the word go with great O, superb D and dominant game planning. A blowout from the moment it started and a complete laugher. If I was a betting man, then I would not hesitate to put my money on Arizona being the BEST in the NFL now.
2. Carolina Panthers (1) – Trying to be undefeated but are meeting a tough challenge in Atlanta. Will have to really gut it out in the second half to get it done. Well it turned out that Carolina couldn’t gut it out. The Panther offense couldn’t muster more than just 2 FGs after an opening TD and that just didn’t get it done. They went quietly and now they must soul search. After preventing a bad Giant team back into last week’s game and then letting a poor Falcon team beat them…can they flip the switch?
3. Kansas City Chiefs (5) – Pretty much rolling over Cleveland with superb D and pretty good O. Game basically over at the half. The Chiefs had to really go hard on D to keep this game kind of in control. They managed to just score enough to seal the deal and they clinched the playoffs. They were really challenged and won the game. Evidently KC had the right memo but Carolina and Pittsburgh missed that paper work.
4. New York Jets (7) – A great start for the Jets. They need to keep the pressure up and they have a 25% shot of stealing this game. The Jets had the lead for most of the game playing good D and ok O. They were only up by 7 late in the fourth and everyone in the world knew what was coming. Brady ran the field on them. The Jets lost the toss in OT then were given a late Christmas present by the Pats and got the ball and won the game. Now New York has their playoff hopes in their control. A great win.
5. Minnesota Vikings (11) – Super game from start to finish. To be fair they faced a team who didn’t seem to try but they were exceptional on D, O, Special Teams and coaching. They jumped out to a lead and pulled away and blew a team going through the motions out of the water. It was a dominant win that guaranteed them a playoff spot. Well done Minnesota. Can you do it again next week against your dragon in its den?
6. Denver Broncos (12) – Denver had trouble keeping the Bengals out of the end zone to start and Osweiler had some difficulty getting his feet under him but the Broncos persevered. The D kept up the pressure and eventually made their presence felt. The Bronco O got it going and even found an effective run game. Full credit to Denver that in the end they pulled out the win. Well done. Now they are in the playoffs and can figure out what the next step to success is.
7. Seattle Seahawks (3) – How the Seahawks were unable to match the ferocity of St. Louis on D is beyond me. Seemed like a lack of effort on all phases and this loss could put Seattle on the road to Green Bay or Minnesota in the playoffs now. A bad loss for a team that looked bad.
8. New England Patriots (4) – Pats finding the Jets D hard to deal with and will have to pull out every dirty trick in their book to win this one. The Pats kept the game within a score until late and once more Tom and Gronk marched the field to tie and went to OT. Belichick inexplicably gave the ball to NYJ and watched has his D was unable to make any stops and they lost. They may yet get the home field advantage but they have made that a bit harder now.
9. Washington Redskins (10) – The Skins took only about 5 minutes to get their legs under themselves. Cousins was fantastic with accurate and sometimes brilliant throws. Again and again he threaded the ball into tight spots for first downs and touch downs. The D played alright and Cousins led a great offense and the Redskins won the NFC Least title. Someone had to win it!
10. Cincinnati Bengals (9) – Cincy gave all they had with a rookie QB and a D trying to get it done in tough weather conditions. In a game with huge playoff implications for both teams the Bengals played better in this matchup than they usually do under Dalton’s leadership. McCarron looked good for the most part and for most of the game the result was in doubt. In the end they lost a close one but they have to feel good about going forward with McCarron who has proven himself to me that he is a legit NFL QB.
11. Green Bay Packers (8) – An unexpected result in this game. Aaron Rodgers was bewitched, bothered and bewildered by the Cards. He was sacked, sacked, sacked and sacked…he was picked and picked, he fumbled and fumbled. Green Bay’s D was as bad as everyone but Troy Aikmen knows it is. The Packer O was unable to do much and a much humbled Pack team must try to R-E-L-A-X before week 17. A total humiliating blowout and a lot of fun to watch.
12. Houston Texans (13) – The Texans are playing to keep the Division in their grasp and are dominating in all 3 areas. Great, great start to the game. The Texans poured it on and put the game away. A great win that puts them one more win from being in the playoffs. They are in control, and albeit a win over Tennessee, looking good.
13. Pittsburgh Steelers (6) – Pittsburgh in a win and win and in and they are not giving the effort to needed to win this game. They are being outplayed early by a rival who wants to upset them. The Steelers D just chose a really bad day to not show up. They let Ryan frickin Mallett to complete about 75% of his passes and the Ravens scored many more than Pittsburgh could muster. A loss that puts them outside looking in to the playoffs and they need to win next week and get a ton of help. A bad loss.
14. Indianapolis Colts (14) – Colts have playoffs on their mind and are playing well and out in front at the half. The Colts were able to keep it going even with the archeological remains of Charlie Whitehurst starting for them at QB. They fell into a strong prevent and although allowing lots of pass yards late they pulled out a win and keep their nose above water until week 17. They need to win again and I believe get a lot of help.
15. Oakland Raiders (17) – Guessing honoring Al Davis with a ‘just win, baby’ was the mantra on Christmas Eve. Oakland just won. They were massively penalized, made little offensive headway except in OT and snuck out of possibly the last game in Oakland with a win off the foot of ol’ Seabass. It was a win; it was ugly but they just won baby.
16. Detroit Lions (18) – The Lions issues on O and D are apparent again and they are having trouble getting ahead of a game Niner squad. The Lions kept it rolling and were able to develop a decent pass offense and put the game away. It is a win for Detroit. It is meaningless and although it has been strongly stated by paid network talking heads that they have gotten better lately…they are pretty much the same old sorry assed Lions.
17. St. Louis Rams (19) – The Rams found their good game juice once more. They have now swept the Seahawks. In a season of disappoint and failure the Rams have played 2 good games against Seattle. A terrific defensive game and Case Keenum has shown he is a capable NFL QB. A great game for St. Louis. They just only have had 5 of these this year.
18. New York Giants (15) – Evidently the Giants were only playing to make the playoffs as I have never seen a team not try as well as New York did here. No offense, no defense, the coaches didn’t seem to care. They got eliminated and showed 0 heart. It was shameful and they all owe the Mara’s a game check. If that is the best they can muster they may as well just forfeit week 17 now. A terrible effort that is an embarrassment to the franchise.
19. Buffalo Bills (22) – The Bills are going through the motions but some of the motions have gotten them a couple of field goals. Not a game of people trying very hard so far. Best result in a month with the best performance by the Bills D. Rexy got one good game out of his team and this is a win. Of course being already eliminated takes some pressure of them but they tried harder than their opponent and got the win.
20. Jacksonville Jaguars (16) – The Jaguars have been known this year for their excellent O and questionable D and boy did that ring true today. The D started out slow and got rolled up by the Saints. By the time the Jags started to claw their way back it was too deep a hole to climb out of. Good O, although the turnovers were bad and hurt them, and bad D and another loss for a young team that needs to get better on D.
21. San Diego Chargers (20) – San Diego found some left over heart and gave it a good try in Oakland on a night when Football shouldn’t be played. The D held down Oakland throughout regulation and only had issues in OT. Rivers got almost enough done to pull it out but ended up just short. Another loss for a team on the move.
22. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (21) – The Bucs are battling to keep the game to one score and if they can keep the effort up they could be in this to the end. The Bucs D got beat up by the BEARS and the offense turned it over and they just didn’t look in sync. They got it within one score but it was not enough. Another loss for a team that will be much better next year.
23. New Orleans Saints (25) – The Saints brought their A game on O and a mediocre kind of C game on D but that was a good enough combination to tear up Jacksonville. Brees was on fire basically on one leg and the D didn’t suck the way they often do. A solid win in a lost season.
24. Atlanta Falcons (26) – Laughingly still alive in the playoffs, Atlanta is playing this like their Super Bowl and is giving all they have to knock Carolina out of the undefeated ranks. The Falcons gave their all. Matty Ice was back and played well. The Falcons D had one of their ‘good’ games. Much will be made of this win but and it’s a big BUT, the Falcons still are not any good and if they think this makes their season sunshine and roses…they have some surprises coming.(late note…they are now eliminated).
25. Baltimore Ravens (29) – The Ravens are treating this like their Super Bowl and are dominating and if they can keep it up they will go a long way to sticking a knife in the Steeler playoff hopes. The Ravens played super on O and D and they were able to muster one good effort to beat their rival and possibly ruin Pittsburgh’s playoff dreams. That is about all this spoiler team can be happy about in a terrible year.
26. Chicago BEARS (29) – The BEARS have some O and a little D and are battling the Bucs in a game of two old time rivals who neither have anything to play for. The BEARS played a solid game on O and even got a bit of D to allow them to grab a win against a good young team. One of the better games for Chicago this year. Unfortunately, they have only had about 4 of those. It was a win.
27. Philadelphia Eagles (23) – The Eagles came out fast and scored 7, the Eagles D then played like usual crap for a very long period. The Eagles offense managed to make one quick score late in the game. Except for the two quick scores the dog and pony show that is the Eagles O was a joke. Chip Kelly is confident he will return in 2016. I hope he is renting/leasing in Philly and not a home owner there. A bad loss with penalties, turnovers and mistakes abundant. Pretty descriptive 60-minute example of a year in Eagle football. (late note, Chip was ‘released’…hope he was renting)
28. Miami Dolphins (24) – Miami has nothing to play for and are playing like they are nothing. The Dolphins got more of an effort out of their guys in the second half and they were able to get the game within 6 but that was all they had. The Dolphins are a team that needs to start over. AGAIN.
29. Cleveland Browns (27) – Kind of like the woes of Scarecrow…if they only had an O. The Browns D is trying but the O can’t figure out how to beat the Chief D. This could be a long ugly one. Cleveland found some traction on offense and even scored a touchdown! Cleveland tried hard in the second half and put a pretty good scare into KC. In the end they were just THAT close and they lost another. Good effort.
30. Tennessee Titans (30) – Titans are in position to get the first pick and they could use it. Terrible O and D and this could be very ugly. It was ugly. The only positive that Tennessee could pull out of this mess was ‘hey we didn’t get shutout’. That is little consolation in another butt smacking. They have first pick overall but I still think two teams are worse than them.
31. Dallas Cowboys (31) – Decent O and Decent D has the Cowboys tied in a low scoring snorer in Western NY at the half. Evidently Dallas decided that effort wasn’t worth putting on the plane to NY. No effort, no heart. I swear if Dead Man Coaching isn’t gassed on Black Monday he does have incriminating docs and or porn pics on the Jones family. A terrible effort and they were dominated by a moribund team whose D is nothing close to be effective. Oh and Greg Hardy is a SCUMBAG.
32. San Francisco 49ers (32) – I will say this, SF is playing for their jobs and there is a lot of heart and effort on the field as they battle for a win. The Niners gave a pretty good effort and lost by only a couple of scores. I credit them for trying in this one. Tomsula still looks like a guy who can’t figure out a puzzle and is just confused. They can keep him; they just need to get rid of about 40 of their 53-man roster. Another loss by the worst team in the NFL.
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!
Happy New Year to all the readers!
Mr. N the still ill with a bad flu BEARS Fan