Sunday, December 26, 2010

Week 16: 11 Things I Know I Know

1. I know this week featured a number of games many people thought were important but were actually relatively meaningless. This included: Colts-Raiders, Seahawks-Bucs, and 49ers-Rams.

The Colts won but still must win next week (assuming Jacksonville wins) in order to clinch a playoff berth. The Seahawks got crushed while the Rams won, but a win by Seattle at home over St. Louis at home would send the Seahawks to the playoffs with a less than stellar 7-9 record.

2. I know the Chargers have only themselves to blame. GM and self-professed know-it-all AJ Smith's hardline attitude with OT Marcus McNeill and WR Vincent Jackson got the season off to a terrible start, and San Diego could never recover. They will be watching this year's playoffs from home after today's loss to the Bengals officially eliminated them from contention.

3. I know the Jets won today despite losing their game against the Bears. With the Jaguars' loss, the Jets clinched the six-seed in the AFC. If Rex Ryan so chooses, he can rest all his regulars in Week 17, in essence creating a bye.

4. I know the Giants would rather forget the last four and a half quarters where they have been outscored 73-17. This awful run will likely cost them a playoff berth unless a number of things fall into place next week.

5. I know the Chiefs are a very good team. It took 16 weeks to convince me, but I am now a believer. With QB Matt Cassel under center, the team has won 10 of 14 games, and their two-pronged rushing attach of Jamaal Charles and Thomas Jones keeps defenses honest. This is a dangerous team.

6. I know the Tim Tebow Era in Denver might not end after next week. After falling behind 17-0, the Chosen One led the Broncos back in impressive fashion en route to a 24-23 victory. He threw for 308 yards and rushed for 30 more.

7. I know Josh Freeman is a lot better than I have given him credit for. His five touchdown performance against the Seahawks was a thing of beauty. The Bucs are in good hands going forward.

8. I know that I love the fact all games next week will be played during the day on Sunday. There will be 13 1:00 games and three 4:00 games. Best game: Chicago at Green Bay. Worst game: Arizona at San Francisco.

[Editor's Note: The Rams-Seahawks game will be played at 8pm. Still a good thing that all games are played on Sunday.]

9. I know the Carolina Panthers clinched the top pick in the 2011 NFL Draft thanks to the victories of Denver and Cincinnati. Now, the future of the franchise might rest on Andrew Lucks' decision about declaring early for the draft. If he does decide to come out, there will be little mystery as to whom the Panthers will select.

10. I know the Falcons will beat the Saints tomorrow night, 34-24. With a win, the Falcons can clinch homefield advantage throughout the playoffs. This would allow them to rest all of their players for the next three weeks (Week 17, then the bye week). Plus, Matt Ryan does not lose at home.

11. I know the Eagles will beat the Vikings on Tuesday night, 38-17. This season cannot end soon enough for the Vikings. They couldn't stop the Bears' offense last week. How can they be expected to contain Michael Vick and the NFL-leading Eagles offense?

Bonus (non-NFL):

12. I know it took me almost a quarter and a half of tonight's Little Caesar's Bowl to remember how I knew referee Ron Cherry. Then, it clicked:

"11 Things I Know I Know" is my feeble attempt to trump the untrumpable's Peter King and his "10 Things I Think I Think" which happens to be my favorite article each week.

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