We saw two games on Saturday afternoon and evening, ESPN has all the highlights. The first game was between the Redskins and the Titans, both teams looking to keep their postseason hopes alive with a win.
Washington scored on their first drive with a field goal. On the Titans first possession they answered with a TD, but failed to convert the extra point making the score 3-6 at the end of the first. In the second quarter the Redskins added a TD of their own while the Titans were held to just a field goal. The half ended 10-9 in favor of Washington. The bigger story was that QB Marcus Mariota of the Titans went down on a sack and injured his throwing elbow and did not return to the game.
The third quarter saw the back-up QB for the Titans, Blaine Gabbert come out, but was held scoreless in the third. The Redskins added to their lead with a field goal stretching their lead to 13-9. In the fourth and final quarter the Titans turned up the heat scoring a field goal to come within a point 13-12. The Titans took their first lead when in the second part of the fourth quarter they scored a TD and the extra point to give them the lead 13-19. The Redskins did not show any signs of quitting and tried a Hail Mary in the final seconds of the game but was intercepted by the Titans and returned for a defensive TD. The final score of the game was 13-25 Titans.
The second game Saturday was the Ravens go against the Chargers. This game was not what I thought it would be in the first half. Rivers first possession and first throw ended up an interception by the Ravens. The Ravens got the ball mid-field and marched down to score a field goal giving them the lead and the only score of the quarter 3-0.
In the second quarter the Ravens kicked another field goal to increase the lead to 6-0. Later in the second the Chargers finally got on the board with a field goal of their own making it just a 3 point game, with a score of 6-3 at the half.
At the beginning of the second half the Chargers returned the turnover favor from the beginning of the first quarter by getting a fumble recovery from the Ravens. The Chargers turned the fumble recovery into 7 points giving them the lead early in the third 6-10.
With the very next possession the Ravens scored a TD of their own on a long reception of 60+ yards. the Ravens added to their lead later in the third with another 56 yard field goal leaving the score 16-10 with 5 minutes remaining in the third.
The fourth started like the third ended, 16-10 with the Ravens in the lead. For the first 10 minutes of the quarter it was a battle of field position. Each team exchanged punts hoping to pin the other deep with a chance to either run out the clock or score leaving little to not time for the other. The Chargers did pin the Ravens deep in their own territory with 4:35 left in regulation. The Chargers were hoping to get a stop giving them one last chance at a TD to win the game.
With 3:10 on the clock the Chargers got their wish and the ball, for the win. The Chargers got the punt return and on the run made it to the Ravens 39 yard line. Rivers threw a pass to Antonio Gates who fumbled the ball where it was recovered by the Ravens and returned for a touchdown. The Ravens took the lead with just 2:40 left in the game, 22-10 after missing the two point conversion. With just a 1:21 left, Rivers made a throw to the endzone that was intercepted by the Ravens giving them the win, 22-10.
Sunday, Sunday, Sunday
On Sunday we have a total of 13 games scheduled, nine early games with just three later and one Sunday Night game.
sFirst on the schedule we see a battle in Cincinnati where the Bangles take on the Browns in Cleveland. The Buccaneers take on the Cowboys in Dallas where the Boys just need one win in the next two games to clinch a playoff birth. The Vikings can keep their post season dreams alive with a win over the Lions in Detroit. The Giants look to be spoilers to the Colts and their playoff hopes in Indianapolis.
There is a battle in Florida between the Jaguars and the Dolphins down in Miami. The Bills will try and crash the Patriots post season party when they face off in Foxboro. Even though the Packers and Jets do not have much to play for they will bring the Aaron Rodgers show to East Rutherford. A big game with some serious skin in the game is between the Texans and the Eagles, both teams look to spoil the other ones season. Another game with not much on the line, but pride is the Falcons at the Panthers in Carolina.
Our late games start with the first place Rams at the Arizona Cardinals. The Rams have not been themselves as of late can the Cards influence the standings at home? The Bears head to sunny California to face the 49ers in Santa Clara. The 9ers have been sneaky good on defense, can they shut down the Bears, “Club Dub”? The Chiefs head to one of the most, if not the most difficult stadiums to play in, “The 12” Century Link Field in Seattle. Can the Seahawks offense keep pace with the high volume offense of the Chiefs, or will the high volume stadium of Seattle truly be the 12th man and the deciding factor? On Monday night we see a division rivalry where the Broncos will face off against the Raiders for probably the last time in Oakland.
There are several games this week where one of the teams really has nothing to lose, which makes them very dangerous adversaries. So with that being said my first prediction is going to be the Bucs over Dallas by a score of, 23-13.
Next prediction is going to be the Lions spoiling the Vikings voyage to the playoffs, 17-23.
I think the Patriots just have not been themselves during the second half of this year and will for the first time in I do not know how long lose three in a row this time to the Bills, 27-23.
This one is a biggie, how about the Cardinals beating the Rams in AZ. I think this game will be very close, but the Cards will win, 21-23.
And the last prediction of the week will be the 49ers beating the Bears 23-31 at Levi’s Stadium.
For most of us fantasy players your Super Bowls are this week. I am playing for two Championships of my own in the three leagues I am in. I have started my best players and there is nothing left to do, but wait and see.
Or is there, I pulled one more sneaky trick and picked as many viable players off of the waiver wires and them dropped them. That put said players not available for pickup till Wednesday. Sneaky, yes, dirty, maybe, but this is a strategy play. I said at the beginning of the year this was a game of chess not checkers. Good luck all in your leagues this week.