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 1/3/08

A big day in sports today so here we go:

Dolphins Bringing Back Williams: Based on a letter from the Dolphins, Ricky Williams’s agent said that Bill Parcells and Miami are going to renew Williams’s contract for the 2008 season. Williams has served multiple suspensions for failed drug tests and when he was finally allowed to play this year, he tore a pectoral muscle after only six carries. His rehab is supposedly going well though. It must be for the Dolphins to bring him back for another year. Ricky Williams is always a risk, because there is no way of knowing what he will do next. Yet, the Dolphins were 1-15 this season so even if Williams falls apart, they can’t get much worse

Roy Williams Replacing Taylor in Pro Bowl: The late Sean Taylor was elected to the Pro Bowl as a starter to honor his memory. Dallas Cowboys’ safety Roy Williams gets the honor of replacing Taylor in the Pro Bowl. It was a great move by the NFL to let Taylor be elected a starter and I’m sure they will remember him during the Pro Bowl. “I appreciate being the first alternate to go. We are going to do something special for Sean and his family. … It’s an honor to be going in his place” said Williams, who was the 12th Cowboy selected to the Pro Bowl, a league record. Though the Pro Bowl is never that entertaining of an event, it will be interesting to see how the NFL, Roy Williams, and the rest of each team handle Taylors’ absence.

Athletics Send Swisher to White Sox: The Oakland Athletics sent outfielder Nick Swisher to the Chicago White Sox for three minor leaguers. The A’s were hoping to compete next year in the AL West, but have completely changed routes. They sent ace pitcher Dan Haren to the Arizona Diamondbacks less than a month ago and now have dealt away their best hitter. They received 9 prospects for both of those players and have begun rebuilding again. If Oakland ever decides to put some money into their team, watch out. Billy Beane has already shown he is excellent at drafting prospects and building a farm system. Think of what he could do with some money. Continue reading “Daily Sports Roundup 1/3/08”

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”