|Connelly’s Top Ten: Sox Done / Celtics 50 Wins – One Playoff Round / Belichick Contract Extension||Yoan Moncada and the Red Sox||Connelly’s Top Ten: David OverPriced, Sunday Bird, Complete Games (Or Not)||Two Red Sox Players Considered Serious MVP Candidates|
Just three weeks left, and Favre and the Vikings are done. And New England is essentially a lock for #1. The Jets, despite doing so poorly, are also pretty well-ensconced in a Wildcard spot, as are the Ravens. The Colts are on the outside looking in, but they do have a home game against Jacksonville remaining. But if they lose, they’re out, so they’ll come at J-ville hard. And we’re getting closer and closer to the NFC West being won by a losing team. St Louis has two home games remaining, but they have to get by Kansas City, who is desperate to hold off San Diego, and San Francisco, who is only a game out. Then, a game in Seattle. It’s tougher than it looks for St Louis. And Green Bay lost both to Detroit and Aaron Rodgers, which pretty much knocks them out of the running. So with plenty still to be decided, let’s look at what would happen if the playoffs started as of Tuesday, December 14:
Nobody expected Atlanta to not destroy Carolina, but the Falcons and Matty Ice haven’t lost this season outside of Pennsylvania. They’re like General Lee’s army, except without the incomparable evil. Fortunately, Atlanta’s remaining game with N’Orleans is in Atlanta, meaning the playoffs should indeed go through Foxworthy country.
Someone should have told Chicago they’re a cold weather team. Maybe they’re just not a precipitation team. Either way, Chicago is still in line for a bye by virtue of beating Philadelphia. Though that’s apt to change if Chicago doesn’t step it up immediately.
Philly won this contest in Week 11, but Week 15 matches these tied teams up in the Meadowlands. The Giants haven’t lost since Philly, so the ball is definitely in their hands, unless they fumble it next week. In that game, the G-men had a pretty good game plan for Vick, so if they get an extra stop or two, and put up points against Philly like their opponents have been doing, it’s smooth sailing for New York. Maybe Snookie will show up to support them.
New England‘s biggest challenge left is the Packers, but even that’s only the case if Aaron Rodgers plays, which is unlikely after his second concussion of the year. After three straight destructions, New England is the clear favorite to clash with Atlanta on neutral turf in February.
Pittsburgh should win out to claim the #2 seed. Their offense and defense has been rolling ever since that loss to New England. Right now, that’s the only AFC team that’s capable of knocking Pittsburgh down a peg.
What is happening to the Jets? They’re not even putting up a fight. Kansas City may have been blanked, but that was in San Diego in December, no big deal. Plus, the Chiefs are one of three teams yet to lose at home. The other two? 11-2 New England and Atlanta.
First Baltimore lets Pittsburgh come back. Then, they need overtime and a pick-six to beat Houston despite being up 28-7 in the 3rd, and 28-13 in the 4th. Jacksonville is doing well, including a win over Indy, but they’ll need another one to remain competitive.
Tags: Atlanta Falcons, Baltimore Ravens, Chicago Bears, Jacksonville Jaguars, Kansas City Chiefs, New England Patriots, New Orleans Saints, New York Giants, New York Jets, NFL Playoffs, Philadelphia Eagles, Pittsburgh Steelers, St. Louis Rams