They’re still standing.

At 7-0, the Los Angeles Rams remain kings of the NFL mountain as the only undefeated team in regular season play.

SEVEN FROM SUNDAY

•New Orleans quarterback Drew Brees completed 22 of 30 passes (73.3 percent) for 212 yards with two touchdowns and zero interceptions for a 114.9 rating in the Saints’ 24-23 victory at Baltimore.

Brees, who has 501 career touchdown passes, became the fourth player in NFL history with at least 500 career touchdown passes, joining Peyton Manning (539), Pro Football Hall of Famer Brett Farve (508) and Tom Brady (504).

With Sunday’s win against the Ravens, Brees joins Manning and Favre as the only quarterbacks to defeat all 32 current NFL teams.

•Minnesota wide receiver Adam Thielen had nine receptions for 110 yards and one touchdown in the Vikings’ 37-17 victory over the New York Jets at MetLife Stadium.

Thielen has recorded at least 100 receiving yards in each of Minnesota’s first seven games this season, tying Charley Hennigan (seven consecutive games in 1961) as the only players in NFL history with 100 or more receiving yards in each of his team’s first seven games of a season. Thielen became the fifth player to record seven consecutive games with at least 100 receiving yards in a single season in NFL history.

​Thielen, who went undrafted in 2013, is the fourth undrafted player in the common draft era to record at least seven games with 100 or more receiving yards in a single season, joining ROD SMITH (8 games in 2000), Wes Welker (8 in 2011) and Victor Cruz (7 in 2011).

•Los Angeles Rams running back Todd Gurley scored three touchdowns (two rushing, one receiving) in Rams’ 39-10 victory at San Francisco. The Rams, who are the league’s only unbeaten team, begin the season 7-0 for the first time since 1985.

​Gurley, who has 14 total touchdowns (11 rushing, three receiving) this season, is the third different player with at least 14 touchdowns in his team’s first seven games to start a season, joining Pro Football Hall of Famer Jim Brown (15 in 1958) and Priest Holmes (14 in 2002 and 14 in 2004).

•Tampa Bay kicker Chandel Catanzaro converted the game-winning 59-yard field goal with 1:50 remaining in the Buccaneers’ 26-23 overtime win over Cleveland.

Catanzaro’s 59-yarder is the longest game-winning field goal in overtime since the regular-season overtime rule was instituted in 1974, surpassing the previous record of 57 yards set by Oakland’s Sebastian Janikowski (October 19, 2008 vs. the New York Jets).

At least one game has gone to overtime in each of the first seven weeks of the 2018 season, marking the first time that a season has featured at least one overtime game in each of its first seven weeks.

•Los Angeles Chargers quarterback Philip Rivers completed 19 of 26 passes (73.1 percent) for 306 yards with two touchdowns and zero interceptions for a 137.7 rating in the Chargers’ 20-19 victory over Tennessee before a crowd of 84,301 at London’s Wembley Stadium.

Rivers, who threw touchdowns of 75 and 55 yards, became the first quarterback with two touchdown passes of at least 50 yards in the 23 NFL games played in London since 2007. By the end of the 2018 season, the NFL will have played 24 regular-season games in London, with 29 of 32 teams having participated.

Rivers, who has 60 career games with at least 300 passing yards, is the sixth player in NFL history to record at least 60 such games, joining Drew Brees (112), Peyton Manning (93), Tom Brady (84) and Pro Football Hall of Famers DAN MARINO (63) and Brett Farve (62).

•​Carolina wide receiver Curtis Samuel rushed for a touchdown and quarterback CAM NEWTON threw two touchdowns passes, including a one-yard pass to tight end Greg Olsen with 1:22 remaining in the fourth quarter, in the Panthers’ 21-17 victory over Philadelphia at Lincoln Financial Field.

The Panthers, who trailed 17-0 in the fourth quarter, recorded the largest fourth-quarter comeback victory in franchise history.

Houston defeated Jacksonville, 20-7 in Week 7 in the Sunshine State. The Texans are the sixth team since 1970 to win four consecutive games immediately following an 0-3 start to a season, joining the 1970 New York Giants, 1986 Los Angeles Raiders, 1998 Buffalo Bills, 2000 Pittsburgh Steelers and 2011 Kansas City Chiefs.

New England defeated Chicago, 38-31 at Soldier Field. The Patriots, who scored 38 points in both Week 4 and Week 5 and 43 points in Week 6, are the fifth team since 1970 to score at least 38 points in four consecutive games in a single season, joining the 2014 Dallas Cowboys, 2004 Indianapolis Colts, 2000 St. Louis Rams and 1998 Minnesota Vikings.

•Detroit rookie running back Kerryon Johnson rushed for 158 yards on 19 carries (8.3 average) in the Lions’ 32-21 victory at Miami.

Johnson is the first Lions running back with at least 150 rushing yards in a single game since Jahvid Best (163 vs. Chicago on October 10, 2011). The Lions combined for 248 rushing yards on Sunday, the most by the franchise in a single game since November 23, 1997 (249 yards vs. Indianapolis).

WHAT TO LOOK FOR IN WEEK EIGHT: TOP PASSERS: Six active quarterbacks – New England’s Tom Brady, New Orleans’ Drew Brees, the Los Angeles Chargers’ PHILIP RIVERS, the New York Giants’ Eli Manning, Pittsburgh’s Ben Roethlisberger and Green Bay’s AaronRodgers – rank in the top 10 in NFL history in passing touchdowns.

With four touchdown passes Monday night, Brady (504 touchdown passes) would tie Pro Football Hall of Famer Brett Favre (508) for the second-most touchdown passes in NFL history.

Roethlisberger (341) needs two touchdown passes against Cleveland Sunday at Heinz Field to surpass Pro Football Hall of Famer FRAN TARKENTON (342) and move into sole possession of eighth place on the league’s all-time touchdown passes list.

The players with the most touchdown passes in NFL history:

PLAYER – TEAMS (PASSING TOUCHDOWNS)
Peyton Manning – Indianapolis and Denver (539)
Brett Favre – Green Bay, New York Jets and Minnesota (508)^
Tom Brady – New England (504)*
Drew Brees – San Diego and New Orleans (501)*
Dan Marino – Miami (420)^
Philip Rivers – San Diego and Los Angeles Chargers (359)*
Eli Manning – New York Giants (346)*
Fran Tarkenton – Minnesota and New York Giants (342)^
Ben Roethlisberger – Pittsburgh (341)*
Aaron Rodgers – Green Bay (325)*
*Active
^Pro Football Hall of Famer

MILESTONE WATCH: Indianapolis kicker Adam Vinatieri has scored 2,540 total points during his 23-year NFL career.

With five points on Sunday at Oakland, Vinatieri would surpass Pro Football Hall of Famer Morten Andersen (2,544 points) as the league’s all-time leading scorer.

The players with the most points scored in NFL history:

PLAYER – TEAMS (TOTAL POINTS SCORED)
Morten Andersen – New Orleans, Atlanta, New York Giants, Kansas City and Minnesota (2,544)^
Adam Vinatieri – New England and Indianapolis (2,540)
^Pro Football Hall of Famer

PHENOMENAL FITZ: Arizona wide receiver Larry Fitzgerald has 15,800 receiving yards in his 15-year NFL career.

With 135 receiving yards on Sunday against San Francisco in Glendale, Fitzgerald would surpass Pro Football Hall of Famer Terrell Owens (15,934) for the second-most receiving yards in NFL history.

The players with the most receiving yards in NFL history:

PLAYER – TEAMS (RECIEVING YARDS)
Jerry Rice – San Francisco, Oakland and Seattle (22,895)^
Terrell Owens – San Francisco, Philadelphia, Dallas, Buffalo and Cincinnati (15,934)^
San Francisco, Philadelphia, Dallas, Buffalo, Cincinnati
Larry Fitzgerald – Arizona (15,800)
^Pro Football Hall of Famer

VALUABLE COMPANY: Kansas City quarterback Patrick Mahomes leads the NFL with 22 touchdown passes through the first seven weeks of the season. Mahomes needs three touchdown passes on Sunday against Denver at Arrowhead to join Tom Brady (2007) and Peyton Manning (2004 and 2013) as the only players in NFL history with at least 25 touchdown passes in their team’s first eight games of a season. Brady and Manning went on to earn Associated Press MVP honors in those seasons.

The players with the most passing touchdowns in their team’s first eight games of a season in NFL history:

PLAYER, TEAM (SEASON, PASSING TOUCHDOWNS)
Tom Brady, New England (2007, 30)#
Peyton Manning, Denver (2013, 29)#
Peyton Manning, Indianapolis (2004, 26)#
Patrick Mahomes, Kansas City (2018, 22)*
*In first seven games of season
#Named Associated Press MVP

TOUCHDOWN TODD: Los Angeles Rams running back TODD GURLEY leads the NFL with 956 scrimmage yards and 14 touchdowns through the Rams’ first seven games this season. Gurley has scored at least two touchdowns in three consecutive games and in four total during the 2018 season.

With two touchdowns on Sunday against Green Bay, Gurley can become the fifth player since 1970 to score multiple touchdowns in five of his team’s first eight games of a season. The other four players to accomplish the feat are all enshrined in the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

The players with at least two touchdowns in five of their team’s first eight games of a season since 1970:

PLAYER – TEAM (SEASON, GAMES WITH 2+ TOUCHDOWNS)
Terrell Davis – Denver (1998, 5)^
Emmitt Smith – Dallas (1995, 5)^
Eric Dickerson – Los Angeles Rams (1983, 5)^
Marcus Allen – Los Angeles Raiders (1982, 5)^
Todd Gurley – Los Angeles Rams (2018, 4)*
*In first seven games of season
^Pro Football Hall of Famer

THIELEN GOOD: Minnesota wide receiver Adam Thielen had nine catches for 110 yards and a touchdown in the Vikings’ Week 7 win and leads the league with 67 receptions and 822 receiving yards this season.

Thielen has recorded at least 100 receiving yards in each of Minnesota’s first seven games this season and can surpass Charley Hennigan (seven consecutive games in 1961) to become the only player in NFL history with 100 or more receiving yards in each of his team’s first eight games to start a season.

With 100 receiving yards Sunday night against New Orleans in the Twin Cities, Thielen would join Calvin Johnson (2012) as the only players to record eight consecutive games with at least 100 receiving yards in NFL history.

The players with the most consecutive games with at least 100 receiving yards in NFL history:

PLAYER, TEAM (SEASON, CONSECUTIVE GAMES WITH 100+ RECIEVING YARDS)
Calvin Johnson, Detroit (2012, 8)
Adam Thielen, Minnesota (2018, 7)*
Demaryius Thomas, Denver (2014, 7)
Michael Irvin, Dallas (1995, 7)^
Charley Hennigan, Houston Oilers (1961, 7)
*Active streak
^Pro Football Hall of Famer

Thielen, who also has a touchdown catch in each of his past four games, can join Patrick Jeffers (five consecutive games with Carolina in 1999) as the only players since 1970 with at least 100 receiving yards and a touchdown reception in five consecutive games.

GREEN MACHINE: Cincinnati wide receiver A.J. Green has 596 catches for 8,824 yards and 62 touchdowns in his eight-year NFL career. Green, who will play his 110th career game on Sunday against Tampa Bay, needs four receptions to join Pro Football Hall of Famer Marvin Harrison and Larry Fitzgerald as the only players in NFL history with at least 600 receptions and 60 receiving touchdowns in their first 110 career games.

The players with at least 600 receptions and 60 receiving touchdowns in their first 110 career games in NFL history:

PLAYER, TEAM (RECEPTIONS, TOUCHDOWNS)
Marvin Harrison, Indianapolis (667, 74)^
Larry Fitzgerald, Arizona (623, 66)
A.J. Green, Cincinnati (596, 62)*
*In 109 career games
^Pro Football Hall of Famer

As the season approaches the halfway point, the standings remain tight throughout the league as teams close out the month of October. Entering Week 8, there are 18 teams with a .500 or better winning percentage and 14 clubs with a winning record. Since 1990, 297 of the league’s 336 playoff teams (88 percent) had a winning record through seven games.

Through the first seven weeks of the season, 25 teams have at least three wins. Five teams – Kansas City (6-1), the Los Angeles Chargers (5-2), the Los Angeles Rams (7-0), New England (5-2) and New Orleans (5-1) – have at least five wins this season. Since 1990, when the current 12-team playoff format was adopted, 80 percent (205 of 256) of the previous teams to start 5-2 or better advanced to the postseason, including eight of the nine teams to begin the season 5-2 or better in 2017.

A slow start, however, does not mean that hope is gone. There have been 39 teams since 1990 with a .500 or lower record after seven games to advance to the postseason.

The Rams, who are 7-0 for the first time since 1985, lead the league in point differential (+107), rank third averaging 33.6 points per game and fourth in points allowed per game (18.3). Los Angeles running back Todd Gurley, who scored three touchdowns (two rushing, one receiving) in Week 7, leads the NFL with 14 touchdowns this season and is the third different player in NFL history with at least 14 touchdowns in his team’s first seven games to start a season, joining Pro Football Hall of Famer Jim Brown (15 in 1958) and Priest Holmes (14 in 2002 and 14 in 2004). Defensively, Rams defensive tackle Aaron Donald leads the league with eight sacks and is one of three players in the NFL with at least 10 tackles for loss in 2018 (10).

The NFL enters Week 8 following another exciting weekend of action. Through the first seven weeks of the season, 61 games have been decided by one score, the second-most in NFL history through Week 7 (62 games in 2012), including seven such games last week. Thirty-three of those games have been decided by three or fewer points, the second-most in NFL history through Week 7 (39 games in 1999), including five such games last week. At least one game has gone to overtime in each of the first seven weeks of the 2018 season, marking the first time since the regular-season overtime rule was instituted in 1974 that there has been an overtime game in each of a season’s first seven weeks.

While there are teams that are in the hunt for a playoff spot, other teams are trying to get off the deck, so there’s hope even for them (yes, there’s even hope for Cleveland!). There’s one quarter of the season in the books or will be in the books when week eight comes to an end in Orchard Park. As for this week… teams with byes? Atlanta, Dallas, the Los Angeles Chargers and Tennessee. Green Bay, Oakland, Pittsburgh and Seattle return to the gridiron from their week-long vacations.

As for week seven, it went pretty good as we went 10-4 overall and 64-39 for the season. There’s still a lot of football left. Week eight got underway in the Lone Star State as Houston defeated Miami at NRG Stadium Thursday night and concludes in upstate New York as Tom Brady and the New England Patriots face off against their AFC East rivals from Buffalo in prime time. Here are the Sunday and Monday picks for week eight.

Philadelphia (3-4) at Jacksonville (3-4), 9:30 a.m. Eastern (5:30 p.m. in London) on NFL Network. Rule Britiania times 3! The third game in London takes place on the other side of the Atlantic as the defending Super Bowl champs take on the Jacksonville Jaguars.

Philadelphia led 17-0 at the end of the third quarter (the Eagles led 10-0 at the half after a scoreless first quarter) against Carolina, then saw that lead vanish in front of their eyes as the Panthers scored 21 fourth points unchallenged to come away 21-17 winners at Lincoln Financial Field. Cam Newton threw for 269 yards and a pair of TDs in the final period, after the Eagles went on another long drive, their longest drive of the season since their 17-play drive agianst Indianapolis (that drive lasted 75 yards, using 11:18 of clock), when they would go 17 plays and 94 yards, taking 9:22 off the clock to take a 17-0 lead into the final 15 minutes of action. Carolina outrushed the Eagles 121-58 in their backyard, while Carson Wentz threw for 310 yards with a pair of TDs (Newton was sacked twice, Wentz was sacked four times, neither threw an interception) in the contest, Newton led all rushers with 49 yards). Carolina was 5 of 11 on third down (the Panthers were 1 of 1 on fourth down) and kept the ball for 24:43, while the Eagles ruled the clock and held the pigskin for 35:17, going 3 0f 12 on third down, 3 of 4 on fourth down conversions.

Houston gave Jacksonville their second loss in a row at TIAA Stadium last Sunday, taking a 20-7 win in north Florida. The Texans and DeSean Watson took a 13-0 lead at the half, then led 20-0 late in the third before they would give up Jacksonville’s only score of the day when T.J. Yeldon and backup QB Cody Keesler connected on a 6-yard TD toss with 2:18 left in the third. Houston’s Lamar Miller ran for 100 yards with a TD to lead all rushers, as the Texans outrushed Jacksonville 141-70. Watson threw for 139 yards with a TD, while Blake Bortles threw for 61 yards before being replaced by Keesler (Keesler threw for 156 yards with the TD, four sacks and an interception). Houston was 8 of 16 on third down tries and they only needed to keep the ball for 29:35, while Jacksonville ruled the clock and held the pigskin for 30:25, going 9 of 19 on third down tries, 0 for 1 on fourth down.

While the Jaguars lead the series 3-2, Philadelphia has outscored Jacksonville 114-99 and have won the last two meetings, including taking a 34-17 win in the City of Brotherly Love in 2014. Jacksonville’s last win in the series also came in the City of Brotherly Love, coming away 13-6 winners in 2006. Philadelphia’s favored by 3 on the other side of the Atlantic and the over/under’s 41 1/2. It’s the first game of the day and while some of America will be at church, others will be watching, so if you’re in the Eastern and Central time zones, set the VCR now. Jacksonville covers the 3 and pulls off the upset on the other side of the Big Pond.

Baltimore (4-3) at Carolina (4-2), 1 p.m. on CBS and DirecTV 705. A pair of teams that had opposite results come their way last week meet in Charm City as Joe Flacco and the Baltimore Ravens host Cam Newton and the Carolina Panthers at M&T Stadium. While one team lost in the final seconds at home, the other rallied and won their contest on the road.

Baltimore let a 17-7 lead after three quarters against New Orleans get away from them as the New Orleans Saints rallied in the fourth, then held off a last-second Ravens rally to come out with a 24-23 loss. The Ravens, leading 10-7 at the intermission before Drew Brees and the Saints went to work in the final 15 minutes of action, scoring 17 points in the frame before the Ravens would make it a 1-point game with 24 seconds left when WR John Brown and Flacco connected on a 14-yard TD pass. Ravens fans then would experience heartbreak as K Jeff Tucker’s PAT try sailed wide to the right, giving the Saints the road win. NeW Orleans outrushed Baltimore 134-77, while Brees threw for 212 yards and a pair of TDs (Flacco threw for 279 yards with a pair of TDs, neither threw an interception). Baltimore went 5 of 12 on third down (the Ravens were 1 for 2 on fourth down tries) and kept the ball for 26:29, while the Saints ruled the clock, keeping the ball for 33:31 while going 6 of 14 and 4 of 5 on third and fourth downs.

Carolina trailed Philadelphia 17-0 at the end of the third quarter (the Eagles led 10-0 at the half after a scoreless first quarter) against Carolina, then took control of things in the final 15 minutes as the Panthers scored 21 fourth points unchallenged to come away 21-17 winners at Lincoln Financial Field. Cam Newton threw for 269 yards and a pair of TDs in the final period, after the Eagles went on another long drive, their longest drive of the season since their 17-play drive agianst Indianapolis (that drive lasted 75 yards, using 11:18 of clock), when they would go 17 plays and 94 yards, taking 9:22 off the clock to take a 17-0 lead into the final 15 minutes of action. Carolina outrushed the Eagles 121-58 in their backyard, while Carson Wentz threw for 310 yards with a pair of TDs (Newton was sacked twice, Wentz was sacked four times, neither threw an interception) in the contest, Newton led all rushers with 49 yards). Carolina was 5 of 11 on third down (the Panthers were 1 of 1 on fourth down) and kept the ball for 24:43, while the Eagles ruled the clock and held the pigskin for 35:17, going 3 0f 12 on third down, 3 of 4 on fourth down conversions.

The Panthers may lead the series 3-2 but Baltimore has outscored Carolina 119-83 and have won the last two contests, with the Ravens’ last win coming in 2014 in Charm City by a final of 38-10, while Carolina’s last win in the series also came in Baltimore by a final of 23-21 in 2006. Baltimore’s favored by 1 1/2 and the over/under’s 43. The numbers sound reasonable and both clubs can put up offense when they need to. However… Carolina’s finer in the Tar Heel State. Panthers cover the 1 1/2 and win at home.

New York Jets (3-4) at Chicago (3-3), 1 p.m. on CBS and DirecTV 706. Chicago plays their third AFC East foe, welcoming the New York Jets to Solider Field and the Windy City. Both teams took home losses in last week’s contests.

Sam Darnold and the New York Jets were taken to task last Sunday by the Minnesota Vikings 37-17 last Sunday at Met Life Stadium. GangGreen trailed 10-7 at the break in upstate New Jersey, then watched as the Vikings floored the gas, outscoring the J-E-T-S! JETS! JETS! JETS! 27-10 in the last 30 minutes of action. Minnesota outrushed GangGreen 88-71 in the contest, with Cousins throwing for 241 yards and a pair of TDs, connecting with WR Adam Thielen on one of the passes, while Daronld threw for 206 yards and a TD with three interceptions (Cousins was sacked once, while Darnold was sacked three times). The Vikings, recpients of four New York turnovers went 2 of 15 on third down (they were 1 for 1 on fourth down tries) and kept the ball for 32:11, while the J-E-T-S! JETS! JETS! JETS! held the ball for 27:49, going 2 of 13 on third down tries, 1 of 2 on fourth down.

Bears fans had their hearts broken in the Windy City as Chicago fell to New England 38-31 at Soldier Field Sunday afternoon. New England led 21-17 at the half, then watched Da Bears take a 24-21 lead with 12:04 left in the third when Chicago QB Mitchell Trubisky and RB Tank Cohen connected on a 6-yard TD toss. That lead would not last very long as K Stephen Gostkowski tied things up with a 29-yard field goal, then the Pats took the lead back and for keeps when LB Kyle Van Noy blocked a Bears’ punt and retured it 21 yards for a score. Brady and RB James White would then add a 2-yard TD pass with 8:40 left for a 14-point lead. Chicago would pull themselves to within seven with 4:13 left in regulation when FB Michael Burton and Trubisky connected on a 11-yard toss. Chicago then got the ball back with 24 seconds left, getting as close as the Bears’ 45-yard line when Trubisky’s desparation pass to WR Kevin White fell a yard short of the goal line. Chicago outrushed New England 134-108 with Trubisky leading all rushers with 81 yards and a rushing TD to go with his two passing TDs (Trubsiky threw for 333 yards with a pair of sacks and a pair of interceptions), while Brady threw for 277 yards and three TDs (white would catch two of those tosses) with a sack and an interception. New England was 6 for 13 on third down and held the ball for 29:51, while Chicago was 8 for 16 on third down and kept the ball for 30:09 (both clubs went 1 of 1 on fourth down).

Da Bears lead da series 8-3, they’ve outscored GangGreen 221-168 and have won the last four contests in the series, with Chicago’s last win coming in 2014 in the Meadowlands by a final of 27-19, while the J-E-T-S! JETS! JETS! JETS!’ last win over Chicago came in 2000 in the Meadowlands, coming away 17-10. Chicago’s favored by 7 and the over/under’s 46. Both teams are actually better than their records. Da Bears win but GangGreen makes things closer than 7 in the Windy City.

Denver (3-4) at Kansas City (6-1), 1 p.m. on CBS and DirecTV 707. Toss the record books. A pair of AFC West rivals meet in the Show-Me State as Denver and Kansas City meets at Arrowhead in a week four rematch.

Denver made life miserable for Arizona in Glendale, taking the Desert Angry Birds 45-10. The Broncos led 35-3 at the break and never took the foot off the gas, outscoring the Cardinals 10-7 in the final 30 minutes of play. Denver outrushed Arizona 131-69 with rookie RB Phillip Lindsay leading the way with 90 yards and a TD, while Case Keenum threw for 161 yards and a TD. Arizona’s Josh Rosen threw for 194 yards with a TD but was sacked six times and threw three interceptions.

The Chiefs got back on track after their loss at New England and took care of Cincinnati last Sunday evening at Kansas City as the Chiefs manhandled Dalton and the Bengals 45-10 at Arrowhead. The Chiefs led the Bengals 24-7 at the break, then pulled away in the final 30 minutes of action, outcoring the Bengals 21-3. The Bengals were held to 65 yards rushing, while Dalton threw for 148 yards with a TD and a pair of sacks with an interception, while the Chiefs ran for 198 yards (Kareem Hunt led all rushers with 86 yards and a TD), while Mahomes threw for 358 yards and four TDs. Cincinnati went 4 of 11 on third down and held the ball for 26:17, while the Chiefs were 9 for 12 on third down and ruled the clock, as they held on to the pigskin for 33:43 (both clubs were 0 of 1 on fourth down).

They met in the Mile High City in week four and the Chiefs came away with the 27-23 road win. In their week four meeting in Denver, Kansas City trailed 13-10 at the break, then proceeded to outscore the Broncos 17-10, with the game-winning score coming with RB Kareem Hunt scoring from a yard out with 1:39 left to play. The winning score was part of an 8-play, 60-yard drive that used 2:56 of clock and saw Pat Mahomes throw a pass with his left hand. Although the Broncos outrushed Kansas City 159-142, Hunt led all rushers with 121 yards and the game-winning TD. As for Mahomes, he threw for 304 yards and a TD to TE Travis Kelce, while Denver’s Case Keenum threw for 245 yards and an interception (Keenum was sacked four times, while Mahomes was sacked once.) While the Chiefs were 7 of 15 on third down tries, they were 2 of 2 on fourth down conversions and held the ball for 35:02, while Denver kept the pigskin for 24:58, going 2 of 11 on third down, 2 of 3 on fourth down.

In the week four contest in Denver, Kansas City was a 5-point favorite but would win only by 4. As for the 52 1/2 over/under? It was untouched as both clubs scraped up 50 total points. This time, Kansas City’s favored by 10 at Arrowhead and the over/under’s 56. The 56 is reasonable. The 10? That has us scratching our heads. Denver’s not that bad to be 10 point underdogs. Given the history in this series, it could be closer. Denver makes it close but the Chiefs prevail at Arrowhead and take the win.

Cleveland (2-4-1) at Pittsburgh (3-2-1), 1 p.m. on CBS and DirecTV 708. It’s a week one rematch in the Steel City as Pittsburgh and Cleveland meet at Heinz Field.

Cleveland played their fourth overtime game of the 2018 campaign and once again took a loss in the extra period, falling to Tampa Bay 26-23 at Raymond James Stadium. Trailing 16-2 at the intermission, the Browns managed to even things up in the final 30 minutes of action, tying things up with 2:28 left when Browns QB Baker Mayfield and WR Jarvis Landry connected on a 16-yard TD toss. Each team would then exchange the ball twice and Browns fans would see their hearts get broken when Tampa Bay would recover a fumble by Jabrill Peppers with 3:12 left in the extra period at the Browns’ 48-yard line. That was all the field position that Tampa Bay would need as they would use a 6-play, 7-yard drive that took only 82 seconds and ended with a 59-yard field goal by Chris Catanzaro.

Cleveland actually outrushed the Buccaneers 119-114, with Browns rookie RB Nick Chubb leading the way with 80 yards and a TD, while Mayfield threw for 215 yards and a pair of TDs, while Tampa Bay’s Jameis Winston threw for 365 yards with a pair of interceptions (Mayfield was sacked five times, Winston was sacked four) in the overtime contest. The Browns were 3 for 14 on third down, 0 of 2 on fourth down and held on to the ball for 30:27, while time was on Tampa Bay’s side, as they would hold the ball for 37:43, while going 6 of 13 and 1 of 1 on third and fourth downs.

Pittsburgh returns from their bye week after their 28-21 win at Cincinnati two Sundays ago. The Steelers erased a 14-14 tie at Paul Brown Stadium and outscored the Bengals 14-7 in the final 30 minutes of action, using a pair of Chris Boswell field goals and a 31-yard TD toss from QB Ben Roethlisberger and WR Antonio Brown with 10 seconds left to take the road win. Pittsburgh outrushed Cincinnati 112-62 with RB James Conner leading all rushers with 111 yards and a pair of rushing TDs, while Roethlisberger threw for 369 yards and the game winning toss (Roethlisberger was not sacked and did not throw an interception), while Cincinnati’s Andy Dalton threw for 229 yards with a pair of TDs to Tyler Boyd (Dalton was sacked three times). Both teams did quite well on third downs (Pittsburgh was 8 of 14, Cincinnati was 6 of 12) and the Steelers kept the ball for 34:56 to Cincinnati’s 25:04.

They met in week one along the shores of Lake Erie and both clubs played to a 21-21 tie. Pittsburgh let a 21-7 lead at the end of the third quarter get away from them as Cleveland would go on to score 14 fourth quarter points unchallenged, then held off Roethlisberger and the Steelers to the overtime tie at Cleveland’s FirstEnergy Stadium. While the Browns outrushed Pittsburgh 177-159, Pittsburgh’s James Conner led all rushers with 135 yards and a pair of TDs on the ground. Roethlisberge threw for 335 yards with a TD but was sacked four times and picked off three; for the Browns, rookie QB Tyrod Taylor threw for 197 yards and a TD toss to WR Josh Gordon but was sacked seven times and picked off once. Pittsburgh was 7 of 15 on third down and kept the ball for 35:12, while the Browns held the ball for 34:48, going 5 of 18, 0 of 1 on third and fourth downs.

In the week one contest in Cleveland, Pittsburgh was a 4 1/2-point favorite but both teams came away even. That was the bad news. The good news? Both teams covered the 41 1/2 over/under with 42 points. Pittsburgh’s favored again, this time by 8 at home in the Steel City with a 51 over/under. Cleveland’s been pretty interesting to watch and while they won’t take this one, they’ll make things a little harder for the Steelers at Heinz Field this week. Steelers win this one at home but won’t cover the 8.

Tampa Bay (3-3) at Cincinnati (4-3), 1 p.m. on FOX and DirecTV 709. Jameis Winston and Tampa Bay make their way to the shores of the Ohio River to face off against Andy Dalton and the Cincinnati Bengals.

Tampa Bay gave Cleveland their second overtime loss of the season, taking a 26-23 win at Raymond James Stadium. The Bucs led 16-2 at the intermission, before the Browns managed to even things up in the final 30 minutes of action, tying things up with 2:28 left when Browns QB Baker Mayfield and WR Jarvis Landry connected on a 16-yard TD toss. Each team would then exchange the ball twice and Browns fans would see their hearts get broken when Tampa Bay would recover a fumble by Jabrill Peppers with 3:12 left in the extra period at the Browns’ 48-yard line. That was all the field position that Tampa Bay would need as they would use a 6-play, 7-yard drive that took only 82 seconds and ended with a 59-yard field goal by Chris Catanzaro.

Cleveland actually outrushed the Buccaneers 119-114, with Browns rookie RB Nick Chubb leading the way with 80 yards and a TD, while Mayfield threw for 215 yards and a pair of TDs, while Winston threw for 365 yards with a pair of interceptions (Mayfield was sacked five times, Winston was sacked four) in the overtime contest. The Browns were 3 for 14 on third down, 0 of 2 on fourth down and held on to the ball for 30:27, while time was on Tampa Bay’s side, as they would hold the ball for 37:43, while going 6 of 13 and 1 of 1 on third and fourth downs.

Cincinnati was taken to task last Sunday evening at Kansas City as the Chiefs manhandled Dalton and the Bengals 45-10 at Arrowhead. Cincinnati trailed 24-7 at the break, then watched the Chiefs pull away in the final 30 minutes of action, outcoring the Bengals 21-3. The Bengals were held to 65 yards rushing, while Dalton threw for 148 yards with a TD and a pair of sacks with an interception, while the Chiefs ran for 198 yards (Kareem Hunt led all rushers with 86 yards and a TD), while Mahomes threw for 358 yards and four TDs. Cincinnati went 4 of 11 on third down and held the ball for 26:17, while the Chiefs were 9 for 12 on third down and ruled the clock, as they held on to the pigskin for 33:43 (both clubs were 0 of 1 on fourth down).

Tampa Bay leads the series 7-4 and the Bucs have outscored the Bengals 213-196. Cincinnati won the last meeting with Tampa Bay, taking a 14-13 win in the Sunshine State in 2014, while Tampa Bay’s last win came in Cincinnati in 2010 by a final of 24-21. Cincinnati’s favored by 4 1/2 and the over/under’s 54. Both numbers make sense and both clubs are trying to make the post-season party. Bengals cover the 4 1/2 and take the win at home.

Seattle (3-3) at Detroit (3-3), 1 p.m. on FOX and DirecTV 710. A pair of .500 teams meet in the Motor City as the Seattle Seahawks travel to Detroit for a early morning meeting (Pacific Coast time) with the Lions at Ford Field.

Seattle comes out of their bye week after they took Oakland to task, holding the Silver and Black to a fourth-quarter field goal, coming away 27-3 winners at Wembley Stadium in London. The Seahawks led 17-0 at the half on the other side of the pond, then took a 27-0 lead halfway into the final quarter before Oakland would dent the scoreboard on a 43-yard field goal by Mike McCrane with 8:25 left to play. Seattle outrushed Oakland 155-79 and Wilson threw for 222 yards with three TDs, while sacking Derek Carr six times (Carr threw for 142 yards in the loss). Seattle went 9 of 13 on third down and held the ball for 31:26, while the Raiders were 4 of 12 on third down, 0 for 1 on fourth down and held the ball for 28:34.

Detroit took a 17-7 lead at the intermission at Hard Rock Stadium and came out on top 32-21 winners in the Sunshine State. Before the Lions would eventually restore order in the second half, Miami came to within seven with 7:06 left in the third when RB Kenyan Drake scored on a 54-yard run. The Lions then restored order when TE Michael Roberts and QB Matthew Stafford connected on a 4-yard TD toss and K Matt Prater kicked a pair of fourth quarter FGs to seal Miami’s fate. Lions rookie RB Kerryon Johnson rushed for 158 yards to lead all rushers as the Lions outrushed Miami 248-107 (Drake led Miami with 72 yards on the ground), while Stafford threw for 217 yards, while Miami’s Brock Osweiler threw for 239 yards (each man threw a pair of TDs, Osweiler was sacked four times, Stafford was sacked once). Miami went 6 of 11 on third down conversions and held on to the ball for 26:21, while the Lions held the ball for 33:39, going 2 for 8 on third down, 1 of 1 on fourth down.

Seattle holds an 8-5 lead in the series and they have outscored the Lions 306-251. Their last regular season meeting took place in 2015 in the land of Grunge, Salmon and Starbucks by a final of 13-10. They did meet in post-season play in 2016 in the Pacific Northwest, as the Seahawks manhandled Detroit 26-6 in the NFC Wild Card round. In that meeting, the Seahawks led 10-3 at the half, then proceeded to outpace the Lions 16-3 in the final 30 minutes of action. Outrushing Detroit 177-49, the Seahawk defense sacked Stafford (205 yards) three times, while Wilson threw for 224 yards and a pair of TDs (Wilson was also sacked three times). Seattle went 9 of 16 and 2 of 2 on third and fourth downs, keeping the ball for 36:39, while the Lions held the ball for 23:21, going 2 of 11 on third down, 0 for 2 on fourth down.

Detroit’s favored by 3 in the Motor City and the over/under’s 49 1/2. This one may be worth your time watching. Seattle pulls off the road upset and covers the three in the Motor City.

Washington (4-3) at New York Giants (1-6), 1 p.m. on FOX and DirecTV 711. First place meets last place in the NFC East on Sunday afternoon in the Meadowlands as Washington, in first place in the division, travels to Met Life Stadium for a meeting with Eli Manning and the New York Giants.

Washington held off a late Dallas rally at FedEx Field and survived a 20-17 scare from their NFC East rival Dallas last Sunday afternoon. Washington led 7-0 at the end of the first quarter, then saw that lead go away as Cowboys QB Dak Prescott and WR Michael Gallup connected on a 49-yard TD toss with 60 seconds left before halftime. Washington then would take the lead back in the third quarter with the help of K Dustin Hopkins, who booted a 21-yard field with 9:10 left in the quarter. Hopkins would then add a 25-yarder early in the fourth quarter, giving Washington a 13-7 lead. Dallas would pull themselves to within three with 9:46 left when K Brett Maher booted a 47-yard try. The Redskins then pushed the lead back to 10 with 4:55 left in regulation when LB Preston Smith made a defensive linesman’s dream come true when he picked up a Dallas fumble and returned it for a 1-yard TD.

Dallas was not going quietly into the good night as Prescott would score from a yard out with 97 seconds left to play, making the score 20-17. After a Washington punt, the Cowboys would get the ball back with 69 seconds left and got as close as Washington’s 34 and could have tied the contest but Maher’s 52-yard try hit the crossbar, giving Washington the win. Washington outrushed Dallas 130-73, with Redskins RB Adrian Peterson barely missing the 100-yard barrier with 99 to lead all rushers. Prescott, who along with Ezekiel Elliott, rushed for 33 yards, throwing for 273 yards, while Alex Smtih threw for 178 yards (neither Prescott or Smith threw an interception; Prescott was sacked four times, while Smith was sacked once). Washington went 3 of 12 on third down tries (they were 0 of 1 on fourth down) and kept the ball for 30:55, while the Cowboys kept the ball for 29:05, going 5 of 14 and 1 of 2 on third and fourth downs.

The Giants fell to Atlanta Monday, as the Falcons came away 23-20 winners in the Big Peach. Atlanta led throughout the contest and took a 10-3 lead with them to the intermission. The Falcons outrushed Big Blue 67-61 in the Monday night contest, while Matt Ryan threw for 379 yards and connected with WR Marvin Hall on a 47-yard TD pass to open the scoring in the contest, while Manning threw for 399 yards, connecting with WR Odell Beckham Jr. on a 1-yard strike in the final seconds of the contest. The Falcons held the ball for 32:17, going 7 of 13 on third down tries, while the Giants held the ball for 27:43, going 5 of 12 on third down and 0 of 1 on fourth down.

Including contests that were played when the Redskins called Boston home and they were known as the Braves and games were played at Yankee Stadium, RFK Stadium and Giants Stadium, the Giants lead the series 99-67-4 and have outscored the Redskins 3,434-3,045. They split last year’s contests, each taking home wins in the process.

Round 1.

Week 12 in Landover. Washington broke a 10-10 third quarter tie at FedEx Field, scored 10 fourth quarter points unchallenged to take a 20-10 win over the Giants. After a scoreless first quarter, the teams went into the intermission tied at 3-3. Washington outrushed Big Blue 122-84, with Redskins RB Samaje Perine led all rushers with 100 yards, while Kirk Cousins threw for 242 yards with a pair of TDs (Cousins was sacked six times and picked off once; Manning threw for 113 yards with an interception and four sacks). Washington was 4 for 15 on third down (the Redskins were 0 of 1 on fourth down) and held on to the ball for 34:37, while the Giants kept the pigskin for 25:23, going 2 of 14 on third down, 1 of 2 on fourth down.

The Giants would get revenge on their NFC East rivals at home in upstate New Jersey in the season finale for both teams, as they would come out on top 18-10 at Met Life Stadium. New York led 15-10 at the half, then iced things away as K Alex Rosas kicked a 29-yard field goal to open the final quarter. Giants RB Orleans Darkwa led all rushers with 154 yards and a rushing TD, while Manning threw for 132 yards with a TD and an interception (Cousins threw for 158 yards with three interceptions; Manning was sacked twice, Cousins was sacked three times). New York, outrushing Washington 260-61, was 4 of 16 on third down and held the ball for 31:53, while the Giants were a dismal 1 of 13 on third down (they were 1 of 1 on fourth down) and kept the ball for 28:07.

In the week 12 Thanksgiving night contest in Landover, the Redskins covered the 7-point spread, winning by 10 but neither team touched the 44 over/under, scoring only 30 points. In the week 17 season finale in upstate New Jersey, the Redskins were again the favorite, this time by 3 1/2 and the Giants covered, winning by 8. As for the 38 over/under? It was untouched as both teams scored only 28 points. Washington’s favored by 1 and the over/under’s 42. HAIL TO THE REDSKINS! Washington covers the 1 and wins in Landover.

Indianapolis (2-5) at Oakland (1-5), 4:05 p.m. on CBS and DirecTV 712. A pair of struggling teams meet on the Eastern side of San Francisco bay as Andrew Luck and the Indianapolis Colts take on the Oakland Raiders.

The Colts held Buffalo to a Stephen Hauschka field and a safety in the third quarter, coming away 37-5 winners at Lucas Oil Stadium. After a scoreless first quarter, the Colts took a 24-0 at the break and never looked back to take the win in the Hoosier State. The Colts outrushed Buffalo 220-135 with Indy RB Marlon Mack led all rushers with 126 yards and a TD, while Luck threw for 156 yards and four TDs, connecting with T.Y. Hilton on two of those tosses. Indy went 7 for 13 on third down, 1 of 2 on fourth down and kept the ball for 33:19, while the Bills, keeping the ball for 26:41, went 2 of 9 on third down, 0 of 1 on fourth down.

Oakland comes out of their bye week after they were taken to task by Seattle, as the Seahawks held the Silver and Black to a fourth-quarter field goal, coming away 27-3 winners at Wembley Stadium in London. The Seahawks led 17-0 at the half on the other side of the pond, then took a 27-0 lead halfway into the final quarter before Oakland would dent the scoreboard on a 43-yard field goal by Mike McCrane with 8:25 left to play. Seattle outrushed Oakland 155-79 and Wilson threw for 222 yards with three TDs, while sacking Derek Carr six times (Carr threw for 142 yards in the loss). Seattle went 9 of 13 on third down and held the ball for 31:26, while the Raiders were 4 of 12 on third down, 0 for 1 on fourth down and held the ball for 28:34.

The Raiders have an 8-6 series lead and they have outscored the Colts 335-314 (including contests that took place when the teams were in Baltimore and Los Angeles). Oakland won the last meeting, taking a 33-25 win in Oakland in 2016, while the Colts’ last win in the series came in the Hoosier State in 2013 by a final of 21-17. The Colts are favored by 3 and the over/under’s 49. We wouldn’t blame you at all if you took a pass on this one and watched that NCIS marathon on USA (yes, the sight of Ziva smacking Tony on the head is really cute!). Oakland pulls the upset at home and covers the 3.

San Francisco (1-6) at Arizona (1-6), 4:25 p.m. on FOX and DirecTV 713. A pair of NFC West teams trying to stay out of the division as they meet in Glendale in a divisional rematch.

San Francisco dropped a 39-10 decision to NFC West foe Los Angeles in Santa Clara last Sunday. The 49ers trailed the defending NFC West champions led 22-7 at the intermission and were held by the Rams to a 51-yard field goal by Robbie Gould late in the third quarter. Rams RB Todd Gurley ran for a pair of TDs and caught a TD pass from Jared Goff as Los Angeles outrushed San Francisco 146-107 (Gurley ran for 63 yards, while Goff threw for 202 yards with a pair of TDs and a pair of sacks), while San Francisco’s C.J. Beatherd threw for 170 yards with a pair of TDs and seven sacks. The Rams were 5 for 12 on third down tries and held the ball for 32:51. San Francisco kept the ball for 27:09 in the loss at Santa Clara and went 3 of 11, 0 of 1 on third and fourth downs.

Arizona was taken to task by Denver in Glendale, as the Desert Angry Birds fell to the Broncos 45-10 last Thursday night. Arizona trailed the Broncos led 35-3 at the break and Denver would never took the foot off the gas, outscoring the Cardinals 10-7 in the final 30 minutes of play. Denver outrushed Arizona 131-69 with rookie RB Phillip Lindsay leading the way with 90 yards and a TD, while Case Keenum threw for 161 yards and a TD. Arizona’s Josh Rosen threw for 194 yards with a TD but was sacked six times and threw three interceptions.

It’s a rematch from week five as the Desert Angry Birds broke their four-game losing streak, picking up their first win of the 2018 campaign with a 28-18 win over San Francisco 49ers at Levis’ Stadium in Santa Clara. Arizona led 14-6 at the break, then proceeded to outpace the 49ers 14-12 in the final 30 minutes of action. Although they were outrushed by the 49ers 147-56 and C.J. Beathard threw for 349 yards and a pair of TDs, they saw Josh Rosen throw for 170 yards with a TD and forced five San Francisco turnovers (Beathard threw a pair of interceptions and San Francisco fumbled three times) to take the win. Arizona went 2 of 12 on third down tries in wine country and kept the ball for 19:48, while the 49ers ruled the clock, keeping the ball to themselves for 40:12, going 10 of 17 on third down, 1 of 2 on fourth down.

San Francisco was a 4-point favorite at home in Glendale and the Desert Angry Birds covered with their 10-point win. The two clubs combined for 46 points, allowing them to cover the 41 over/under. This time around, the Desert Angry Birds are favored by 1 and the over/under’s 43 1/2. Take a pass on this one if at all possible and go get that last-second Halloween candy. Cardinals cover in the desert and takes the win in Glendale.

Green Bay (3-2-1) at Los Angeles Rams (7-0), 4:25 p.m. on FOX and DirecTV 714. They stand alone. The Los Angeles Rams, the last unbeaten team, host Aaron Rodgers and the Green Bay Packers on the West Coast at the Coliseum.

The Packers come back from their bye week after their 33-30 Monday night win against San Francisco at Lambeau Field. Green Bay trailed the 49ers 24-20 at the intermisson, then stormed back in the second half to tie things up at 30-30 with 1:55 when Rodgers and WR DeVonte Adams connected on a 16-yard TD pass. Green Bay would then send their fans home happy when Mason Crosby connected on a 27-yard field goal as time expired. San Francisco outrushed Green Bay 174-116, while Rodgers threw for 425 yards in the win (C.J. Bethard threw for 245 yards for San Francisco; each man threw a pair of TDs, Bethard was sacked twice, Rodgers was sacked three times. Green Bay went 4 of 13 (they were 1 of 2 on fourth down) on third down tries and held the ball for 31:08, including the game-winning drive, while the 49ers were 2 of 9 on third down tries, keeping the ball for 28:52.

The Rams remained in the ranks of the unbeatens after they took care of San Francisco 39-10 in Santa Clara last Sunday. The defending NFC West champions led 22-7 at the intermission and held San Francisco to a 51-yard field goal by Robbie Gould late in the third quarter. Rams RB Todd Gurley ran for a pair of TDs and caught a TD pass from Jared Goff as Los Angeles outrushed San Francisco 146-107 (Gurley ran for 63 yards, while Goff threw for 202 yards with a pair of TDs and a pair of sacks), while San Francisco’s C.J. Beatherd threw for 170 yards with a pair of TDs and seven sacks. The Rams were 5 for 12 on third down tries and held the ball for 32:51. San Francisco kept the ball for 27:09 in the loss at Santa Clara and went 3 of 11, 0 of 1 on third and fourth downs.

Including contests that were played at Milwaukee’s County Stadium, Cleveland and St. Louis, the series is tied at 45-45-2 and the Rams have outscored Green Bay 2,105-2,094. However… the Packers have won the last five meetings, including taking a 24-10 win at Lambeau Field in 2015, while the Rams last win came in 2006 (also in Lambeau) by a final of 23-20. Los Angeles’ a 9-point favorite and the over/under’s 57. While Green Bay makes things a bit interesting, the Rams remain unbeaten at home and takes the win, covering the 9.

New Orleans (5-1) at Minnesota (4-2-1), 8:20 p.m. on NBC. It’s a rematch of an NFC Divisonal game that will be talked about for ages as Kirk Cousins and the Minnesota Vikings return to the Land of 10,000 Lakes for a Sunday evening meeting with Drew Brees and the New Orleans Saints at US Bank Stadium, with both teams in first place in their respective divisons taking big wins on the road last Sunday.

New Orleans erased a 17-7 deficit against Baltimore and came away from Charm City with a 24-23 win after they held off a last-second Ravens rally in the final seconds. Baltimore led 10-7 at the intermission at M&T Stadium last Sunday afternon before Brees and the Saints went to work in the final 15 minutes of action, scoring 17 points in the frame before the Ravens would make it a 1-point game with 24 seconds left when WR John Brown and Flacco connected on a 14-yard TD pass. Ravens fans then would experience heartbreak as K Jeff Tucker’s PAT try sailed wide to the right, giving the Saints the road win. NeW Orleans outrushed Baltimore 134-77, while Brees threw for 212 yards and a pair of TDs (Flacco threw for 279 yards with a pair of TDs, neither threw an interception). Baltimore went 5 of 12 on third down (the Ravens were 1 for 2 on fourth down tries) and kept the ball for 26:29, while the Saints ruled the clock, keeping the ball for 33:31 while going 6 of 14 and 4 of 5 on third and fourth downs.

Minnesota manhandled Sam Darnold and the New York Jets 37-17 last Sunday at Met Life Stadium. The Purple Gang led 10-7 at the break in upstate New Jersey, then floored the gas as they would outscore the J-E-T-S! JETS! JETS! JETS! 27-10 in the last 30 minutes of action. Minnesota outrushed GangGreen 88-71 in the contest, with Cousins throwing for 241 yards and a pair of TDs, connecting with WR Adam Thielen on one of the passes, while Daronld threw for 206 yards and a TD with three interceptions (Cousins was sacked once, while Darnold was sacked three times). The Vikings, recpients of four New York turnovers went 2 of 15 on third down (they were 1 for 1 on fourth down tries) and kept the ball for 32:11, while the J-E-T-S! JETS! JETS! JETS! held the ball for 27:49, going 2 of 13 on third down tries, 1 of 2 on fourth down.

Minnesota leads the series 19-10 and they’ve outscored New Orleans 732-531. They met twice last year, once in regular season action and again in the post-season, with the Vikings winning both contests in the Twin Cities (New Orleans’ last win in the series came in the Big Easy in 2014 as they took a 20-9 win).

The first meeting took place in week one in the Land of 10,000 Lakes with the Vikings coming away 29-19 winners at US Bank Stadium. Minnesota led 16-6 at the intermission and the two teams played even football in the second half. Minnesota’s Devin Cook led all rushers with 127 yards as the Vikings outrushed the Saints 129-60 and Sam Bradford threw for 346 yards and three TDs with no interceptions, while Brees threw for 291 yards and a TD (neither threw an interception and both men were sacked once). Minnesota was 9 of 14 on third down tries and held on to the ball for 31:16, while the Saints held the pigskin for 28:44, going 4 of 11 on third down conversions.

The two clubs met in an NFC Divisional game that was one for the ages last year in the Twin Cities and the Vikings earned their way into the NFC Championship in a manner that not even Hollywood could have expected, coming away from US Bank Stadium 29-24 winners over Drew Brees and the New Orleans Saints last Sunday afternoon. The Vikings led 17-0 at the intermission against New Orleans before the Saints’ Michael Thomas ended Minnesota’s bid for a shutout when he and Drew Brees connected on a 14-yard TD pass with 1:18 left in the third quarter. Brees and Thomas would connect again with 13:09 left in the contest when they connected on a 3-yard toss. After Kyle Horbath gave the Vikings a 20-14 lead with 10:12 left to play, New Orleans took the lead for the first time in the game when rookie RB Alvin Kamara caught a 14 yard TD pass from Brees with 3:01 left to. That lead would not last long, as once again it was Horbath putting the Vikings back on top with a 52-yard field goal with 89 seconds left.

New Orleans was not about to be outdone as they would use an 11-play, 50-yard drive that used 64 seconds of clock and took the lead back when K Wil Lutz connected on a 43-yard field goal with 25 seconds left. Minnesota, without time outs, engineered a drive that almost didn’t see the light of day as Case Keenum and Stefon Diggs opened with a 19-yard pass to their 39-yard line. After two Keenum passes were incomplete, the Vikings needed and got a miracle when Diggs caught Keenum’s desparation pass and took it into the end zone for a 61-yard TD pass as time expired for a walk-off TD to send Minnesota fans home happy and the Vikings to the NFC Championship Game.

Minnesota outrushed New Orleans 95-80 and Keenum threw for 318 yards, while Brees threw for 294 (both men were sacked twice, Keenum threw an interception, while Brees threw two) and Diggs led all recievers with 137 yards on six catches, including the game-winner. Minnesota on third down was 10 of 17 and held the ball for 33:17, including the game-winning drive, while the Saints held the pigskin for 26:43, going 2 of 9 on third down and 1 of 1 on fourth down.

In the week one contest in the Land of 10,000 Lakes, Minnesota covered the 3-point spread, winning by 10 and both clubs matched the 48 over/under with 48 points. In the NFC Divisional Game in the Twin Cities, the Vikings were 3 1/2 favorites and Minnesota would cover the spread with the 5-point win at home and the 44 1/2 over/under was covered as the two teams combined for 53 points. In the Sunday night contest, the oddsmakers like the Vikings as 1-point favorites with a 52 1/2 over/under. Both teams are reasonble and make a lot of sense, which makes this contest “DRILL WORTHY!” (For those of you that know what The Drill is, you are excused. Everyone else, pay attention. We don’t want any rookie mistakes here, k?) After you go to the 9:30 mass on Sunday (the 4:30 vigil mass on Saturday counts as a mass attended, people! Don’t make us send the nuns after you! If we do, it is SOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO OVER!), head to your favorite store (a trip to Wal Mart, Target, K-Mart or Costco counts) and get the vittles and the beverages (soda, beer, wine, coffee, et al… if you live in a state that allows the purchase of the items in question) and invite the co-workers, the neighbors (including that really cute kindergarden teacher that knows what to do with a cover-2 defense) and your cousin Connie (remember her? She’s the one that’s been married twice that’s just turned 58 last June and dates a 43-year old ex-Marine, who’s now a football coach at the high school in your town. She’s also the one that ate an entire Oreo cheesecake, two bags of Cool Ranch Doritos, two bacon cheeseburgers with blue cheese and chugged two 2-liter Cokes at your Super Bowl party last year and didn’t gain a pound. You look at her and say to yourself, “what the hell?”)

Both teams have done quite well on Sunday Night Football, carrying .500 or better mark into the contest (Minnesota is 18-17, while the Saints are 19-14) The Saints are looking for revenge. The Vikings are looking to prove that the two wins were not a fluke. Third time’s a charm for the Vikings, who takes the win in the Land of 10,000 Lakes, covering the 1.

New England (5-2) at Buffalo (2-5), 8:15 p.m. Monday on ESPN. Week eight ends in upstate New York as Tom Brady and the New England Patriots make their way to Orchard Park for an AFC East meeting with the Buffalo Bills.

The defending AFC champs held off Chicago 38-31 in the Windy City last Sunday afternoon. New England led 21-17 at the half, then watched Da Bears take a 24-21 lead with 12:04 left in the third when Chicago QB Mitchell Trubisky and RB Tank Cohen connected on a 6-yard TD toss. That lead would not last very long as K Stephen Gostkowski tied things up with a 29-yard field goal, then the Pats took the lead back and for keeps when LB Kyle Van Noy blocked a Bears’ punt and retured it 21 yards for a score. Brady and RB James White would then add a 2-yard TD pass with 8:40 left for a 14-point lead. Chicago would pull themselves to within seven with 4:13 left in regulation when FB Michael Burton and Trubisky connected on a 11-yard toss. Chicago then got the ball back with 24 seconds left, getting as close as the Bears’ 45-yard line when Trubisky’s desparation pass to WR Kevin White fell a yard short of the goal line. Chicago outrushed New England 134-108 with Trubisky leading all rushers with 81 yards and a rushing TD to go with his two passing TDs (Trubsiky threw for 333 yards with a pair of sacks and a pair of interceptions), while Brady threw for 277 yards and three TDs (white would catch two of those tosses) with a sack and an interception. New England was 6 for 13 on third down and held the ball for 29:51, while Chicago was 8 for 16 on third down and kept the ball for 30:09 (both clubs went 1 of 1 on fourth down).

Buffalo was held by Indianapolis to a Stephen Hauschka field and a safety in the third quarter, falling to the Colts 37-5 at Lucas Oil Stadium. After a scoreless first quarter, Indy took a 24-0 at the break and never looked back to take the win in the Hoosier State. Buffalo was outrushed by the Colts 220-135 with Indy RB Marlon Mack led all rushers with 126 yards and a TD, while Luck threw for 156 yards and four TDs, connecting with T.Y. Hilton on two of those tosses. Indy went 7 for 13 on third down, 1 of 2 on fourth down and kept the ball for 33:19, while the Bills, keeping the ball for 26:41, went 2 of 9 on third down, 0 of 1 on fourth down.

New England leads the series 71-43-1, they’ve outscored the Bills 2,559-2,119 (including contests that were played in Boston) and the Patriots have won the last three meetings, including sweeping the series last year (Buffalo’s last win came in 2016, when the Bills shutout a Brady-less New England 16-0 in Foxboro).

Meeting one? Week 12 in upstate New York and the Patriots held Buffalo to a second-quarter field goal by Hauscka as the Pats were 23-3 winners in Orchard Park. New England led 9-3 at the break thanks to three Gostkowski field goals, then got a pair of Rex Burkhead rushing TDs in the second half to seal Buffalo’s fate. New England outrushed Buffalo 191-183 and Brady threw for 258 yards and was picked off once while being sacked three times (Buffalo’s Tyrod Taylor threw for 65 yards but was sacked three times before being replaced). New England was 5 for 12 on third down tries and kept the ball for 34:01 to Buffalo’s 25:59, with the Bills going 5 of 13, 0 of 3 on third and fourth downs.

Meeting number two took place in Foxboro in week 16 and the Pats made it a clean sweep of the 2017 series, taking a 37-16 win in Foxboro. New England broke a 13-13 tie at the intermission, outscoring the Bills 24-3 in the final 30 minutes of play. New England outrushed Buffalo 193-84, Brady threw for 224 yards with a pair of TDs (one to TE Rob Gronkowski, the other to RB Deon Lewis) and Lewis rushed for 129 yards and a rushing TD. New England in the rematch went 5 for 11 on third down (the Patriots were 1 of 1 on fourth down) and kept the ball for 31:44, while the Bills kept the ball for 28:16, going 8 of 17 on third down, 0 of 2 on fourth down.

In the week 12 contest in upstate New York, the Patriots covered the 8 1/2-point spread, winning by 20 but neither team touched the 49 over/under as they combined for 26 points. As for the second meeting in Foxboro? New England’s 21-point win allowed them to cover the 11-point spread and this time, the two teams covered the 47 over/under with 53 points. Neither team has exactly done well on Monday night; the Patriots are 24-25 in prime time, while the Bills are 17-25. In the Monday night contest in upstate New York, the Pats are favored by 14 and the over/under’s 44 1/2. We don’t think the Bills are that bad and they’re better than their record. You might want to tape “Magnum” and “Bull” this week. New England prevails on Monday night in upstate New York, taking the win but not covering.