Can The AFC Playoffs Get Any Tighter?

Week 16 of the NFL season is upon us and the races are incredibly close.  

Photo Courtesy of AP

 

Historically close.  

The San Diego Chargers blew out the Tennessee Titans on Friday night to clinch the number two spot in the AFC behind the Indianapolis Colts who continue their pursuit for perfection Sunday against the New York Jets. Besides the Chargers and Colts, the rest of the AFC is effectively up for grabs.  

Here is the current playoff situation:  

Division Leaders
1. Indianapolis Colts (14-0)
2. San Diego Chargers (12-3)
3. New England Patriots (9-5)
4. Cincinnati Bengals (9-5)  

Wild Card Leaders
5. Baltimore Ravens (8-6)
6. Denver Broncos (8-6)  

In the Hunt
Miami Dolphins (7-7)
New York Jets (7-7)
Houston Texans (7-7)
Pittsburgh Steelers (7-7)
Jacksonville Jaguars (7-7)  

The Patriots and Bengals are in the best place  as if either wins, they clinch their division. The Ravens and Broncos control their own destiny as well, but any slip up by them opens the doors for any of the Dolphins, Jets, Texans, Steelers, or Jaguars. So many things can happen, but let’s look at some of the games this week  

Jaguars at Patriots – The Jags travel up North into the Cold to face Bill Belichick’s Patriot team. After a couple of turbulent weeks, New England enjoyed its first real home win of the season last weekend and have put the Randy Moss saga behind them. Meanwhile, Jacksonville fought valiantly against the Colts last week, but came up four points short of the upset. This should be a great game, but I’m giving the Pats the edge mostly because New England excels in cold weather and Florida teams don’t. New England Continue reading “Can The AFC Playoffs Get Any Tighter?”

Daily Sports Roundup 12/28/07

A slow day in sports today so these stories are small, but interesting.

Frasor Out For The Year: North Carolina junior Bobby Frasor will miss the rest of the college basketball season with a torn ligament. He is a versatile player capable of playing many minutes and can play quality time while the Tar Heels rests its stars. He averages over 16 minutes a game and is a player that Roy Williams has valued over the last 2 years. Though it will not have an immediate impact, the loss of Frasor will shrink the Tar Heels bench and require Hansbrough, Lawson, and others to play extra time.

Rod Smith Needs Surgery: Denver Bronco wide receiver Rod Smith may have caught his last pass in the NFL. After undergoing hip surgery in February, three years after his hip began to hurt, Smith wanted to get back into the NFL by the second half of the season. Unfortunately, his hip didn’t agree and Smith has not played a single play this year. Smith revealed today that “It has not healed. It’s not healing at all. Honestly, I don’t even like walking on it. It’s that bad right now to me, and it’s a matter of the hip socket has been bone-on-bone for a while”. He is seeing a specialist in Los Angeles and will likely have a resurfacing of the joint in January. Smith is 37 years old and holds the NFL record for most catches, touchdowns, and yards than any undrafted wide receiver. In his comments today, Smith also spoke about how he wants to spend more time with his family, another remark that sounded as if he was going to retire. Rod Smith has been a great player over his 13 years in the league, and if he does retire, the Broncos and the NFL will lose a talented veteran. Continue reading “Daily Sports Roundup 12/28/07”

2007 AFC Preview

With the 2007 NFL season kicking off on Thursday, this is the perfect time to look at the upcoming year and what fans can look forward to. The AFC Preview is today and the NFC Preview will be coming out in the next couple of days as well.

East

  1. New England Patriots
  2. Newbrady.jpg York Jets
  3. Buffalo Bills
  4. Miami Dolphins

In the AFC East, the Patriots should win this division easily. New England upgraded its receiving core with Randy Moss and Wes Welker. The defense is healthy for the first time in years and RB Lawrence Maroney is ready for a breakout year. Also, the have Tom Brady. Expect the Pats to be playing until the very end. Besides the fact that the Pats have no glaring weaknesses, the rest of the division is not exactly overpowering. The Jets are relying on inconsistent QB Chad Pennington, and do not have a threatening running game. Their defense is better than last year, but don’t expect another magical season like last year. The Bills lost some major players in the off-season, especially running back Willis McGahee. Yes, the Bills upgraded their offensive lines to strengthen their running game. Unfortunately, the lack of a significant RB is going to leave the Bills out of the playoffs. The defense also is quite shaky, leaving more question marks in Buffalo. The Dolphins have 37-year old Trent Green as their quarterback and 30-year old Joey Porter at running back. The defense is slightly improved, and the receiving core is as well, but Green and Porter are simply too old to carry a team for an entire season. The Patriots will run away with the division with the Jets and Bills vying for a Wild Card, and the Dolphins just waiting for next year. Continue reading “2007 AFC Preview”