The Seahawks managed to put on another increidble show for the third straight week, this time against a team who many considered to be the best in the NFC. That may not be the case anymore, as the Seahawks thumped the 49ers 42-13, clinching at least a wild card spot in the conference, while pulling to within a half game of the Niners in the West.
Of course, it was an eventful week, filled with big games, teams clinching postseason berths and clutch performances. Here’s a short recap in case you missed the action in week 16.
AFC Playoffs Set
After Indianapolis defeated Kansas City 20-13 and after the Bengals held off the Steelers 13-10 this week, the AFC found its six playoff teams. Everything besides position and first round byes is now decided as the Texans failed to lock up their spot, losing to the Vikings 23-6.
With the Broncos winning their 10th consecutive game this week, Denver and Houston are now in prime position to receive first round byes out of the AFC, but New England is waiting in the wings at 11-4 and one slip up by either team could earn them a bye if they go on to defeat Miami next week. Houston has a tough game on the road against Indy, while Denver should end the season with a win against the hapless 2-13 Chiefs.
So just to recap, here is the playoff situation in the AFC:
1. South: Texans 2. West: Broncos 3. East: Patriots 4. North: Ravens 5. WC: Colts 6. WC: Bengals
NFC: Seahawks Clinch, Cowboys-Redskins to Decide East
We know the aforementioned Seahawks are in, but there is still plenty to be settled in the NFC with one week to go, including the second wild card spot, positioning and the East division, which will come down to the week 17 battle between the Dallas Cowboys and Washington Redskins.
Dallas overcame a 14-point fourth quarter deficit against New Orleans this week, only to lose in overtime 34-31, while the Redskins took care of business against the Eagles 27-20. The Redskins host Dallas for all the marbles now and things are looking good considering they beat Dallas earlier this season on the road.
Meanwhile, the Bears and Vikings stayed in the hunt with big wins this week, while the Giants lost to Baltimore, but still have an outside shot at the postseason. Here is the current situation and what teams need to happen:
1. South: Falcons 2. North: Packers 3. West: 49ers 4. East: Redskins-Cowboys depending on winner next week.
5. WC: Seahawks 6. WC: Vikings
In the Hunt: Bears-Need a win against Detroit and a Vikings loss to Green Bay
In the Hunt: Giants-Need a win against Philadelphia and losses from Minnesota, Dallas and Chicago
So there you have it. Simple. Now, in the games that really matter in week 17, here are my quick picks.
Minnesota-Green Bay=Green Bay
New York-Philadelphia=New York
NFC WCs: Seattle, New York
East Champ: Washington
That’s right. I’m taking the Giants to find their way in. Don’t be surprised if it happens with the current schedule. The only real upset would be Detroit beating Chicago and that’s not too much of a stretch considering how poorly the Bears have played as of late. See you next week when we start talking real playoff games.