-Alvin Kamara ties a 91-year-old record with six touchdowns and 155 yards on the ground as the Saints clinched the NFC South in a 52-33 win against the Vikings. Minnesota is now eliminated from the playoffs with the loss. The 52 points are the most points given up by the Vikings in a game since 1963. The six touchdowns by Kamara match the number of titles won by Micheal Jordan and the number of finals losses by Lebron James.
-Can it get any worse for the Las Vegas Raiders? A lack of discipline and a defensive lapse cost the Raiders a potential playoff berth in a 26-25 loss to the Miami Dolphins. Ryan Fitzpatrick came off the bench in the fourth quarter with the Dolphins trailing 16-13 and led them to three scores to secure the Dolphins playoff berth. Jon Gruden continues to be the most overrated coach in the NFL.
-The Tampa Bay Buccaneers are in the first playoffs for the first time since 2007. Tom Brady had the third perfect game of his career with a rating of 158.3, leading the Bucs to a 47-7 win over the Lions. Brady passed for 347 yards and four touchdowns in the first half. Wide receiver Mike Evans is 39 yards shy of becoming the first player in NFL history with seven consecutive seasons of 1,000 receiving yards. The Bucs are 10-5 for the first time since 2005.
-The San Francisco 49ers, out of the playoffs, continue to play with passion and pride as they beat the Arizona Cardinals 20-12. Third-string quarterback CJ Beathard passed for three touchdowns in the win. 49ers defensive coordinator Robert Saleh’s stock continues to rise as his defense held the Cardinals 4/16 on third-down conversions.
-After 56 yards of total offense in the first half, the Steelers offense came to life in the second half and outscored the Colts 21-3 to win the AFC North. This was the largest second-half deficit that a Mike Tomlin coached team has overcome. Colts quarterback Phillip Rivers tied Dan Marino for fifth all-time in career touchdown passes with 420. The Colts will need a win next week against Jacksonville and a Browns loss to the Steelers to get into the playoffs.
-The Cleveland Browns will have to wait till next week to have a chance to break their playoff drought. Playing without their starting wide receivers, the Browns played a sloppy game in losing 23-16 to the New York Jets. Baker Mayfield had two fumbles in the game; the last fumble occurred as the Browns were at the Jets 15-yard line driving for the tying score with under two minutes to play. If the Browns win next week against Pittsburgh, they are in the playoffs.
-The Bears beat up Jacksonville 41-17. Mitch Trubisky had 265 yards passing with two touchdown passes as the Bears took control in the third quarter. The Bears host Green Bay next Sunday with a berth in the playoffs at stake. With the loss, the Jaguars assured themselves of the number one pick in the NFL draft.
-The Baltimore Ravens took care of the New York Giants 27-13 to keep their playoff hopes alive. A win next week against Cincinnati and the Ravens will earn their third consecutive playoff berth. The Giants can still win the NFC East by beating Dallas next week and a Washington loss to Philadelphia.
-The Bengals win their second in a row beating the Houston Texans 37-31. Bengals third-string quarterback Brandon Allen passed for 371 yards, and two touchdown passes in the win. JJ Watt had some thoughts after the game:
-The Kansas City Chiefs survived a scare from the Atlanta Falcons as Atlanta kicker Younghoe Koo missed a 54-yard field goal with 1:54 to play to give the Chiefs a 17-14 win. Koo had made 29 consecutive field goals before his missing. The Chiefs secure home-field advantage throughout the playoffs with the win. Tight end Travis Kelce set a new NFL record held by George Kittle for most receiving yards in a season by a tight end. Kelce has 1,426 yards on the season with one game to
-The LA Chargers got their sixth win of the season, beating the Denver Broncos 19-16. Chargers rookie quarterback Justin Herbert set a rookie record for touchdown passes in a season with 28, breaking the previous record of 27 held by Baker Mayfield.
-Washington had a chance to win the NFC East and couldn’t close the deal. Carolina went into FedEx Field and beat Washington 20-13. Dwayne Haskins started in place of Alex Smith, and he may have started his last game in Washington. Haskins was 14/28 for 154 yards and two interceptions as Carolina built a 20-3 halftime lead. Washington still controls its playoff destiny. A win next week against Philadelphia and Washington wins the NFC East.
-The Seattle Seahawks win the NFC West beating the LA Rams 20-9. The Seahawks win their first division title since 2016. This is the fifth title for head coach Pete Carroll. Rams Quarterback Jared Goff suffered a broken thumb in the fourth quarter, and his status for next week is questionable.
-The Dallas Cowboys outscored the Philadelphia Eagles 34-3 the last three quarters to beat the Eagles 37-17. The Cowboys will play the New York Giants next week, with the winner having a chance to win the NFC East. The Eagles were eliminated from playoff contention with the loss today.
-The Green Bay Packers took care of business at home with a 40-14 win over the Tennessee Titans. This was the Packers’ most impressive win of the season as they hold on to the number one seed in the NFC. The Packers will play at Chicago next week, with the Bears needing a win to make the playoffs.
Quotes of the week
“Yeah, this is a bad defense,” Zimmer said, via Courtney Cronin of ESPN. “Worst One I’ve ever had. Really disappointed defensively. You’ve gotta work really hard to give up 52.”
This Lions coaching staff today is the closest we will ever get to the Twitter dude who’s like, “I can call an NFL game. I’m smarter than those coaches”. –Geoff Schwartz
“In the 2nd half at Atlanta, Brady threw for 320 yards. In today’s 1st half at Det, Brady just threw 348 yards. That’s 668 in back-to-halves (6 TDs, 0 INTs). The all-time NFL record for a game is 554 (Norm Van Brocklin, 1951). JUST THINK ABOUT THOSE NUMBERS” Skip Bayless