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The NFL announced this week the following schedule changes for Week 11 on Sunday, November 18. The league announced that the Minnesota-Chicago game will move from 1 p.m. on FOX to 8:20 p.m. on NBC, the Philadelphia-New Orleans game moves from 1 p.m. on FOX to 4:25 p.m. on FOX and the Pittsburgh-Jacksonville game originally scheduled at 8:20 p.m. on NBC will move to CBS at 1 p.m.

The following is the final Week 11 NFL schedule (all times Eastern):

Thursday, November 15
Green Bay at Seattle, 8:20 p.m. on FOX, NFL Network and Amazon

Sunday, November 18
Dallas at ATLANTA, 1 p.m. on FOX
Cincinnati at Baltimore, 1 p.m. on CBS
Carolina at Detroit, 1 p.m. on FOX
Tennessee at Indianapolis, 1 p.m. on CBS
Pittsburgh at Jacksonville, 1 p.m. on CBS
Tampa Bay at New York Giants, 1 p.m. on FOX
Houston at Washington, 1 p.m. on CBS
Oakland at Arizona, 4:05 p.m. on CBS
Denver at Los Angeles Chargers, 4:05 p.m. on CBS
Philadelphia at New Orleans, 4:25 p.m. on FOX
Minnesota at Chicago, 8:20 p.m. on NBC

Monday, November 19
Kansas City at Los Angeles Rams (Game in Mexico City), 8:15 p.m. on ESPN

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The NFL announced today the following schedule changes for Week 11 on Sunday, November 18.

The Minnesota Vikings at Chicago Bears game will move from 1 p.m. on FOX to 8:20 p.m. on NBC.

The Philadelphia Eagles at New Orleans Saints game moves from 1 p.m. on FOX to 4:25 PM ET on FOX.

The Pittsburgh Steelers at Jacksonville Jaguars game originally scheduled at 8:20 p.m. on NBC will move to CBS at 1 p.m.

The following is the final Week 11 NFL schedule (all times Eastern):

Thursday, November 15
Green Bay at Seattle, 8:20 p.m. on FOX, NFL Network and Amazon

Sunday, November 18
Dallas at ATLANTA, 1 p.m. on FOX
Cincinnati at Baltimore, 1 p.m. on CBS
Carolina at Detroit, 1 p.m. on FOX
Tennessee at Indianapolis, 1 p.m. on CBS
Pittsburgh at Jacksonville, 1 p.m. on CBS
Tampa Bay at New York Giants, 1 p.m. on FOX
Houston at Washington, 1 p.m. on CBS
Oakland at Arizona, 4:05 p.m. on CBS
Denver at Los Angeles Chargers, 4:05 p.m. on CBS
Philadelphia at New Orleans, 4:25 p.m. on FOX
Minnesota at Chicago, 8:20 p.m. on NBC

Monday, November 19
Kansas City at Los Angeles Rams (Game in Mexico City), 8:15 p.m. on ESPN

Senior Bowl?

Check.

Draft?

Check.

Mini Camps and OTAs?

Check.

Training camp?

Check.

Preseason games?

Check.

With all of that checked off, it’s time for the real thing. NFL fans can finally rejoice. The 2018 season is underway and actually got underway last Thursday night in Philadelphia as the defending Super Bowl champions and Atlanta squared off and defeated the Falcons 18-12 in the City of Brotherly Love.

The schedule was announced last April prior to the draft. It’s finally time for football. After a long winter of watching bad Lifetime movies on Sunday afternoon, it’s football. 31 teams fighting to get their own Lombardi Trophy, while Philadelphia will fight to keep theirs. Your patience is about to be rewarded.

Kickoff Weekend began on Thursday, September 6 in primetime on NBC when the defending Super Bowl champion Philadelphia Eagles hosted Atlanta. Below is a sampling of notable active NFL Kickoff streaks:

• New England, the defending AFC champion, opens the 2018 season at home against Houston. The Patriots have won eight of their past nine home openers on Kickoff Weekend and have 15 straight seasons of 10 wins or more.

• Denver, who starts the season at home against Seattle, has posted a 38-19-1 (.575) record on Kickoff Weekend, the top mark in the AFC. Denver has won its past six Kickoff Weekend games, the longest active streak in the NFL.

• Minnesota, the defending NFC North champion, opens the season hosting San Francsico in the Twin Cities. The Vikings have won their past three home games on Kickoff Weekend.

• Green Bay hosts Chicago in a division showdown on Kickoff Weekend. With a win percentage of .592, the Packers (55-39-3) and Bears (54-39-5) are tied for the best Kickoff Weekend winning percentage in the NFL. The Packers have won their past three Kickoff Weekend games, the longest streak in the NFC.

• Tennessee, who made the playoffs last season for the first time since 2008, faces off against Miami on the road to start 2018. The Titans have won their past four road openers, the longest active streak in the NFL.

THE TEAMS SINCE 1990 TO MAKE THE PLAYOFFS A SEASON AFTER FAILING TO QUALIFY

SEASON – PLAYOFF TEAMS NOT IN PREVIOUS SEASON’S PLAYOFFS
1990 – 7 (Cincinnati, Chicago, Kansas City, Los Angeles Raiders, Miami, New Orleans, Washington)
1991 – 5 (ATLANTA, Dallas, Denver, Detroit, New York Jets)
1992 – 6 (Miami, Minnesota, Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, San Diego, San Francisco)
1993 – 5 (Denver, Detroit, Green Bay, Los Angeles Raiders, New York Giants)
1994 – 5 (Chicago, Cleveland, Miami, New England, San Diego)
1995 – 4 (ATLANTA, Buffalo, Indianapolis, Philadelphia)
1996 – 5 (Carolina, Denver, Jacksonville, Minnesota, New England)
1997 – 5 (Detroit, Kansas City, Miami, New York Giants, Tampa Bay)
1998 – 5 (Arizona, ATLANTA, Buffalo, Dallas, New York Jets)
1999 – 7 (Detroit, Indianapolis, St. Louis, Seattle, Tampa Bay, Tennessee, Washington)
2000 – 6 (Baltimore, Denver, New Orleans, New York Giants, Oakland, Philadelphia)
2001 – 6 (Chicago, Green Bay, New England, New York Jets, Pittsburgh, San Francisco)
2002 – 5 (ATLANTA, Cleveland, Indianapolis, New York Giants, Tennessee)
2003 – 8 (Baltimore, Carolina, Dallas, Denver, Kansas City, New England, St. Louis, Seattle)
2004 – 5 (Atlanta, Minnesota, New York Jets, Pittsburgh, San Diego)
2005 – 7 (Carolina, Chicago, Cincinnati, Jacksonville, New York Giants, Tampa Bay, Washington)
2006 – 7 (Baltimore, Dallas, Kansas City, New Orleans, New York Jets, Philadelphia, San Diego)
2007 – 6 (Green Bay, Jacksonville, Pittsburgh, Tampa Bay, Tennessee, Washington)
2008 – 7 (Arizona, ATLANTA, Baltimore, Carolina, Miami, Minnesota, Philadelphia)
2009 – 6 (Cincinnati, Dallas, Green Bay, New England, New Orleans, New York Jets)
2010 – 5 (ATLANTA, Chicago, Kansas City, Pittsburgh, Seattle)
2011 – 6 (Cincinnati, Denver, Detroit, Houston, New York Giants, San Francisco)
2012 – 4 (Indianapolis, Minnesota, Seattle, Washington)
2013 – 5 (Carolina, Kansas City, New Orleans, Philadelphia, San Diego)
2014 – 5 (Arizona, Baltimore, Dallas, Detroit, Pittsburgh)
2015 – 4 (Houston, Kansas City, Minnesota, Washington)
2016 – 6 (ATLANTA, Dallas, Detroit, Miami, New York Giants, Oakland)
2017 – 8 (Buffalo, Carolina, Jacksonville, Los Angeles Rams, Minnesota, New Orleans, Philadelphia, Tennessee)

NEW FACES, NEW PLACES: Seven teams enter the 2018 season with a new head coach – Steve Wilks in Arizona, Matt Nagy in Chicago, Matt Patricia in Detroit, Frank Reich in Indianapolis, Pat Shurmur with the New York Giants, Jon Gruden in
Oakland and Mike Vrabel in Tennessee.

• Five quarterbacks – Oklahoma’s Baker Mayfield (Number 1 overall, Cleveland), Southern California’s Sam Darnold (Number 3, New York Jets), Wyoming’s Josh Allen (Number 7, Buffalo), UCLA’s Josh Rosen (Number 10, Arizona) and Louisville’s Lamar Jackson (Number 32, Baltimore) – were selected in the first round of the 2018 NFL Draft, marking the third time that at least five quarterbacks have been selected in the Draft’s opening round since the inception of the common draft in 1967. At least one rookie quarterback has started Week 1 in 10 consecutive seasons, the longest streak in the NFL since at least 1950.

• Several notable players were on the move during the offseason, including quarterbacks Kirk Cousins (Minnesota), Alex Smith (Washington) and Tyrod Taylor (Cleveland); wide receivers Jarvis Landry (Cleveland), Jordy Nelson (Oakland), Michael Crabtree (Baltimore) and Brandin Cooks (Los Angeles Rams); tight end Jimmy Graham (Green Bay); guard Andrew Norwell (Jacksonville); tackle Nate Solder (New York Giants); defensive end Robert Quinn (Miami); defensive tackles Dontrai Poe (Carolina),
Sheldon Richardson (Minnesota), Ndamukong Suh (Los Angeles Rams) and Muhammad Wilkerson (Green Bay); cornerbacks Malcom
Butler (Tennessee), Marcus Peters (Los Angeles Rams), Richard Sherman (San Francisco) and Aqib Talib (Los Angeles Rams) and
safety Tyrann Mathieu (Houston).

• In each of the past two seasons, a rookie running back has led the NFL in rushing yards – Dallas’ Ezekiel Elliott (1,631) in 2016 and Kansas City’s Kareem Hunt (1,327) in 2017. Three running backs – Saquan Barkley (Number 2 overall, New York Giants), Rashaad Penny (No. 27, Seattle) and Sony Michel (Number 31, New England) – were selected in the first round of the 2018 NFL Draft.

THE LAST SHALL BE FIRST: Competitive balance, one of the hallmarks of the NFL, gives fans hope entering each season. For the 14th time in the past 15 seasons, at least one team finished in first place in its division the season after finishing in last or tied for last place. In fact, of the 46 teams in league history to go from “worst-to-first,” 23 of them have done so in the past 15 years (2003-17), including an NFL-record three such teams in 2005 and 2006.

After finishing in last place in their divisions in 2016, the Jacksonville Jaguars (AFC South) and Philadelphia Eagles (NFC East) each turned it around to win their respective divisions last season. The Eagles won 13 games to claim the NFC East crown en route to their Super Bowl LII victory. The Jaguars won 10 games in 2017 to capture the AFC South title, rebounding from a 3-13 season in 2016 to win their division for the first time since 1999.

TEAMS TO GO FROM “WORST-TO-FIRST” IN THEIR DIVISION SINCE 2003

SEASON – TEAM (RECORD) (PRIOR SEASON RECORD)
2003 – Carolina (11-5) (7-9)
2003 – Kansas City (13-3) (8-8)*
2004 – ATLANTA (11-5) (5-11)
2004 – San Diego (12-4) (4-12)*
2005 – Chicago (11-5) (5-11)
2005 – New York Giants (11-5) (6-10)*
2005 – Tampa Bay (11-5) (5-11)
2006 – Baltimore (13-3) (6-10)*
2006 – New Orleans (10-6) (3-13)
2006 – Philadelphia (10-6) (6-10)
2007 – Tampa Bay (9-7) (4-12)
2008 – Miami (11-5) (1-15)
2009 – New Orleans (13-3)(8-8)**
2010 – Kansas City (10-6) (4-12)
2011 – Denver (8-8) (4-12)
2011 – Houston (10-6) (6-10)*
2012 – Washington (10-6) (5-11)
2013 – Carolina (12-4) (7-9)*
2013 – Philadelphia (10-6) (4-12)
2015 – Washington (9-7) (4-12)
2016 – Dallas (4-12) (13-3)
2017 – Jacksonville (10-6) (3-13)
2017 – Philadelphia (13-3)(7-9)**
*Tied for last place
**Won Super Bowl

Since 2003, the NFL’s 23 teams to go from “worst-to-first” in their division are the most among the four major
professional sports leagues in the United States.

In the NBA, only two teams since the 2003-04 season have finished first in their division after placing in last or tied for last the previous season. There have been seven such teams to accomplish the feat in the past 15 seasons in both MLB and the NHL.

NUMBER OF TEAMS TO FINISH FIRST IN ITS DIVISION THE SEASON AFTER FINISHING IN LAST OR TIED FOR LAST PLACE IN PAST 15 SEASONS

LEAGUE – NO. OF TEAMS TO GO FROM “WORST-TO-FIRST” (TOTAL DIVISIONS)
NFL – 23 (8)
MLB – 7 (6)
NHL – 7* (4)**
NBA – 2 (6)

*2004-05 NNL season was cancelled due to lockout
**NHL realigned from six divisions in 2012-13

DIVSION’S UP FOR GRABS!! In the 16 seasons since realignment in 2002, 29 different teams have won division titles. In 2017, the Jacksonville Jaguars completed a “worst-to-first” turnaround to earn their first playoff berth since 2007 and win their first AFC South division title since joining the division in 2002.

THE MOST DIVISION TITLES AND PLAYOFF BERTHS SINCE REALIGNMENT IN 2002

TEAM – DIVISION TITLES (PLAYOFF BERTHS)
New England – 14 (14)
Indianapolis – 9 (12)
Green Bay – 9 (12)
Seattle – 8 (11)
Pittsburgh – 8 (11)
Philadelphia – 7 (9)
Denver – 6 (8)
Carolina – 5 (7)
Los Angeles Chargers – 5 (6)
ATLANTA – 4 (8)
Baltimore – 4 (8)
Cincinnati – 4 (7)
Kansas City – 4 (7)
Dallas – 4 (6)
New Orleans – 4 (6)
Minnesota – 4 (6)
Houston – 4 (4)
New York Giants – 3 (7)
Arizona – 3 (4)
San Francisco – 3 (4)
Chicago – 3 (3)
Tampa Bay – 3 (3)
Tennessee – 2 (5)
Washington – 2 (4)
Los Angeles Rams – 2 (3)
New York Jets – 1 (5)
Jacksonville – 1 (3)
Miami – 1 (2)
Oakland – 1 (2)
Detroit – 0 (3)
Buffalo – 0 (1)
Cleveland – 0 (1)

With only 16 games per team, every game is important. Below is a sampling of some of this year’s top matchups.

HEADLINE GAMES FOR 2018
Week 2 New Engalnd at Jacksonville – Jacksonville opens their home slate with rematch of the 2017 AFC Champ. Game.
Week 3 Los Angeles Chargers at Los Angeles Rams – Cross-city foes square off in the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum.
Week 4 Minnesota at Los Angeles Rams – FOX kicks off their Thursday Night Football package with battle of NFC playoff teams.
Week 5 Minnestoa at Philadelphia – NFC Championship Game rematch in Philadelphia.
Week 6 Seattle at Oakland (London) – Raiders host Seahawks in first game of 2018 London Series.
Week 7 New York Giants at Atlanta – Monday Night Football matchup at Atlanta’s Mercedes-Benz Stadium, site of SB LIII.
Week 8 Philadelphia at Jacksonville (London) – Showdown at Wembley Stadium is last of three games played in United Kingdom in 2018.
Week 9 Oakland at San Francisco – Battle of the Bay Area on TNF featuring rising stars Derek Carr and Jimmy Garoppolo.
Week 10 New England at Tennessee – Tennessee first-year head coach Mike Vrabel, who played for the Patriots from 2001-08, takes on former team in battle of AFC playoff teams.
Week 11 Kansas City at Los Angeles Rams (Mexico City) – Rams host Chiefs in Monday night matchup at historic Estadio Azteca.
Week 12 Chicago at Detroit/Washington at Dallas/Atlanta at New Orleans – Thanksgiving triple-header marks only second time since 1970 (2014) that the holiday has featured exclusively divisional matchups.
Week 13 Los Angeles Chargers at Pittsburgh – Chargers’ QB Philip Rivers and Steelers’ QB Ben Roethlisberger, both
selected in the 2004 NFL Draft, square off in key AFC showdown.
Week 14 Atlanta at Green Bay – Former MVPs Matt Ryan (2016) and Aaron Rodgers (2011, 2014) face off at Lambeau.
Week 15 Houston at New York Jets/Cleveland at Denver – NFL Network airs a late season Saturday double-header in the AFC.
Week 16 Denver at Oakland – Raiders host Broncos in AFC West rivalry game on Christmas Eve.
Week 17 16 Division Matchups Final weekend features all division games with playoff berths on the line.

KICKOFF WEEKEND RECORDS OF NFL TEAMS

LONGEST STREAKS
AFC (W-L-T, PCT.) (W-L, CURRENT)
Denver (38-19-1, .575) (6-4, W-6)
Houston (9-7-0, .563) (5-3, L-1)
Pittsburgh (43-36-4, .556) (8-3, W-2)
Los Angeles Chargers (32-26-0, .552) (6-6, L-2)
New England (32-26-0, .552) (10-3, L-1)
Miami (27-23-1, .545) (11-5 ,L-1)
Kansas City (31-27-0, .535) (7-4, W-3)
Jacksonville (12-11-0, .522) (6-5, W-1)
Tennessee (30-28-0, .517) (4-3, L-2)
Indianapolis (33-32-0, .508( (8-8, L-4)
Baltimore (11-11-0, .500) (5-4, W-2)
New York Jets (27-31-0, .466) (5-5, L-2)
Oakland (27-31-0, .466) (5-8, W-2)
Cincinnati (23-27-0, .460) (4-4, L-1)
Cleveland (27-38-0, .415) (5-13, L-13)
Buffalo (24-34-0, .414) (6-5, W-1)

NFC (W-L-T, PCT.) (W-L, CURRENT)
Chicago (54-39-5, .592) (9-6, L-4)
Green Bay (55-39-3, .592) (5-6, W-3)
New York Giants (50-38-5, .580) (4-5, L-1)
Dallas (38-19-1, .575) (17-5, W-1)
Minnesota (32-24-1, .575) (5-3, W-2)
Detroit (48 38 2 .563) (10-4, W-2)
San Francisco (37-30-1, .556) (6-3, L-1)
ATLANTA (28-25-0, .529) (5-4, L-1)
Los Angeles Rams (41-39-0, .513) (5-6, W-1)
Washington (40-42-4, .500) (6-5, L-5)
Philadelphia (38-46-1, .465) (6-9, W-3)
Arizona (40-55-2, .427) (6-7, L-2)
Carolina (9-14-0, .391) (3-5, W-1)
Tampa Bay (16-25-0, .390) (3-5, W-1)
Seattle (16-26-0, .381) (3-8, L-1)
New Orleans (17-34-0, .333) (3-6, L-4)

KICKOFF WEEKEND RECORDS OF NFL HEAD COACHES

COACH – TEAM (W-L, PCT.)
Doug Pederson – Philadelphia (3-0, 1.000)
Vance Joseph – Denver (1-0, 1.000)
Dirk Koetter – Tampa Bay (1-0, 1.000)*
Sean McDermott – Buffalo (1-0, 1.000)
Sean McVay – Los Angeles Rams (1-0, 1.000)
Mike Zimmer – Minnesota (3-1, .750)
John Harbaugh – Baltimore (7-3, .700)
Mike McCarthy – Green Bay (8-4, .667)
Doug Marrone – Jacksonville (2-1, .667)
Dan Quinn – ATLANTA (2-2, .500)
Bill Belichick – New England (15-8, .652
Mike Tomlin – Pittsburgh (7-4, .636)
Andy Reid – Kansas City (11-8, .579)
Pete Carroll – Seattle (7-5, .583)
Jason Garrett – Dallas (4-3, .571)
Bill O’Brien – Houston (2-2, .500)
Marvin Lewis – Cincinnati (7-8, .467)
Sean Payton – New Orleans (5-6, .455)
Ron Rivera – Carolina (3-4, .429)
Jon Gruden – Oakland (4-7, .364)
Todd Bowles – New York Jets (1-2, .333)
Hue Jackson – Cleveland (1-2, .333)
Adam Gase – Miami (0-1, .000)*
Jay Gruden – Washington (0-4, .000)
Anthony Lynn – Los Angeles Chargers (0-1, .000)
Kyle Shanahan – San Francisco (0-1, .000)
Pat Shurmur – New York Giants (0-2, .000)
Matt Nagy – Chicago (0-0, .000)
Matt Patricia – Detroit (0-0, .000)
Frank Reich – Indianapolis (0-0, .000)
Mike Vrabel – Tennessee (0-0, .000)
Steve Wilks – Arizona (0-0, .000)

*Gase and Koetter did not play their season opener in 2017 because of Hurricane Irma

BEST NFL RECORDS, PAST 10 YEARS: Over the past 10 years, three NFL teams – New England (123-37, .769), Pittsburgh (106-54, .663), and Green Bay (100-59-1, .628) – have posted a winning percentage over .600. Those three clubs have combined for 24 playoff berths, seven Super Bowl appearances and four Super Bowl championships during that span.

The New England Patriots, under the guidance of head coach Bill Belichick, have the best regular-season record over the past 10 years, qualifying for the postseason nine times and winning Super Bowls XLIX and LI.

“We’ve been doing this a long time, so you get to know each other over the years and you respect each other’s work,” Kansas City Chiefs head coach Andy Reid said about Belichick. “Nobody does it better than him. We’ve just gotten to know each other over the years and I appreciate his friendship and I appreciate what he’s done for the National Football League too.”

TEAMS WITH BEST REGULAR-SEASON RECORDS OVER PAST 10 YEARS (2008-17)

TEAM: W-L-T, PCT. (PLAYOFF BERTHS, SUPER BOWL BERTHS, SUPER BOWL WINS)
New England: 123-37-0, .769 (9 playoff berths, 4 Super Bowl berths, 2 Super Bowl wins)
Pittsburgh: 106-54-0, .663 (7 playoff berths, 2 Super Bowl berths, 1 Super Bowl win)
Green Bay: 100-59-1, .628 (8 playoff berths, 1 Super Bowl berth, 1 Super Bowl win)

WORKING OVERTIME: With so many close games in the NFL, it’s no surprise that 14 contests in the regular season were ultimately decided in overtime.

The Green Bay Packers and Indianapolis Colts tied for the league lead with three overtime games each, while Arizona, Chicago, Cleveland, Jacksonville and San Francisco all went to overtime twice in 2017.

Green Bay won overtime games in both Week 13 and Week 14, marking the first time in franchise history that the Packers won back-to-back games in overtime. In their Week 14 win at Cleveland, Packers wide receiver Davante Adams scored a touchdown in both the final minute of the fourth quarter and in overtime and became the fourth player in NFL history (including the postseason) – and the first since New England’s James White in Super Bowl LI – to score a touchdown in both the final minute of the fourth quarter and in overtime.

Indianapolis kicker Adam Vinatieri converted a game-winning 51-yard field goal with 1:43 remaining in overtime in the Colts’ Week 5 victory over San Francisco. Vinatieri has 10 career game-winning field goals in overtime, the most in NFL history.

OWNER MILESTONES: Many NFL owners will be celebrating notable milestones in 2018, including Pittsburgh’s Art Rooney II, whose family has reached the 85th anniversary of when Art Rooney purchased the team when the franchise was known as the Pirates. Miami’s Stephen M. Ross will be celebrating his 10th anniversary as an NFL owner.

OWNER MILESTONES

NOTABLE OWNER MILESTONES FOR 2018

FRANCHISE: OWNER YEAR ACQUIRED MILESTONE
Pittsburgh: Arthur J. Rooney II (Grandson of Art) 1933 85th Anniversary
Kansas City: Clark Hunt (Son of Lamar and Norma) 1959 60th Season
Tennessee: KSA Industries (Children & Grandchildren of “Bud” Adams) 1959 60th Season
Detroit: Martha Ford 1964 55th Season
Denver: Bowlen Family 1984 35th Season
Los Angeles Chargers: Alex G. Spanos 1984 35th Season
Dallas Cowboys Jerry Jones 1989 30th Season
New England Patriots Robert K. Kraft 1994 25th Season
Philadelphia Eagles Jeffrey Lurie 1994 25th Season
Washington Redskins Daniel M. Snyder 1999 20th Season
Baltimore Ravens Steve Bisciotti 2004 15th Season
Miami Dolphins Stephen M. Ross 2008 10th Anniversary

HAPPY ANNIVERSARY! Several NFL teams will be celebrating anniversaries in the upcoming 2018 campaign.

A SAMPLING OF 2018 NFL ANNIVERSARIES

ANNIVERSARY – CELEBRATION
125th – Grant Dibert signs the first known professional football contract (1893).
120th – The Morgan Athletic Club forms in Chicago (1898) and later becomes known as the Normals, then the
Racine Cardinals, the Chicago Cardinals, the St. Louis Cardinals, the Phoenix Cardinals and in 1994,
the Arizona Cardinals. The team remains the oldest continuing operation in professional football.
85th – The forward pass becomes legalized from anywhere behind the line of scrimmage (1933).
85th – The Pittsburgh Steelers and the Philadelphia Eagles join the NFL (1933).
75th – The league approves the mandatory use of helmets for all players (1943).
75th – Pittsburgh and Philadelphia merge for one season and are known as the Steagles (1943).
60th – On December 28, 1958, Baltimore defeats the New York Giants in the first ever sudden-death overtime
in an NFL Championship Game in a game known today as “The Greatest Game Ever Played.”
55th – The NFL awards NBC with exclusive network broadcasting rights for the 1963 NFL Championship
Game for $926,000 (1963).
55th – The Pro Football Hall of Fame is established in Canton, OH (1963).
40th – On September 10, 1978, Oakland defeats San Diego 21-20 on a play known as the “Holy Roller.”
35th – season The Colts franchise relocates to Indianapolis (1984).
30th – The NFL approves the Cardinals franchise relocation to Phoenix, AZ (1988).
25th – Don Shula becomes the winningest coach in NFL history when Miami beats Philadelphia to give Shula his 325th victory on November 14, 1993.
25th – The NFL allows fans to vote for Pro Bowl participants for the first time (1993).
20th season The Tennessee Oilers’ name is retired by the NFL and the team becomes the Tennessee Titans (1998).
15th – NFL Network launches on DirecTV on November 4, 2003.
10th – An NFL game is broadcast on NBC and also streamed live in its entirety to fans on the Internet via NFL.com and NBCSports.com (2008).

WHAT TO LOOK FOR – KICKOFF WEEKEND

SUPER STARTERS: History indicates that the best way for a team to start its drive toward a Super Bowl championship is to win in Week 1.

The 52 Super Bowl winners have a 42-9-1 record in the Kickoff Weekend games of their title seasons. The Super Bowl LII champion Philadelphia, who defeated Atlanta in the season opener on Thursday night, have won five of their past six home openers played on Kickoff Weekend and six of their past seven overall in Week 1.

Since 1978 when the NFL went to the 16-game schedule and excluding the abbreviated season of 1982, teams that are victorious in their season openers are more than twice as likely to reach the playoffs than losers of an opening game:

•Of the 587 teams which won openers…306 went to the playoffs (185 won division titles).

•Of the 586 teams which lost openers…140 went to the playoffs (81 won division titles).

Note: There are a different number of winning and losing teams in season opening games due to the fact the NFL had 31 teams in each season from 1999 to 2001, which creates an odd number for the total number of results.

In 2017, nine of the 12 playoff teams – Atlanta, Buffalo, Carolina, Jacksonville, Kansas City, the Los Angeles Rams Minnesota, Philadelphia and Pittsburgh – were victorious on Kickoff Weekend.

STARTING STREAKS: Some clubs have excelled in openers. Below is a sampling of notable active NFL Kickoff milestones and streaks:

•The Super Bowl LII champion Philadelphia, who opened the season at home with a 19-12 win against Atlanta, have won their past three Kickoff Weekend games and seven of their past eight.

•The defending AFC champion New England Patriots open the 2018 season at home against Houston. The Patriots have won eight of their past nine home openers on Kickoff Weekend and 12 of 14 overall in Week 1.

•Green Bay, who hosts Chicago on Sunday Night Football, have 55 wins on Kickoff Weekend, the most in the NFL. Chicago ranks second with 54 wins on Kickoff Weekend.

•Denver, who starts the season at home against Seattle, have won their past six Kickoff Weekend games, the longest active streak in the NFL.

•The defending NFC North champion Minnesota Vikings, who open the season hosting San Francisco, have won their past three home games on Kickoff Weekend.

•Tennessee, who made the playoffs last season for the first time since 2008, faces Miami on the road to start 2018. The Titans have won their past five road openers, the longest active streak in the NFL.

START ME UP: Some players have excelled in openers. Below is a sampling of notable individual performances on NFL Kickoff Weekend:

•New Orleans quarterback Drew Brees has 34 touchdown passes in 16 career Week 1 games and needs one touchdown to surpass Peyton Manning (34) for the most touchdown passes in season-opening games in NFL history.

•Washington running back Adrian Peterson has 903 rushing yards in 11 career season-opening games and needs 97 yards to become the fifth player with at least 1,000 rushing yards in season-opening games. The four players to accomplish the feat are Emmitt Smith (1,247), Walter Payton (1,067), Edgerrin James (1,062) and Jim Brown (1,043). Smith, Payton and Brown are all enshrined in the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

•Arizona wide receiver Larry Fitzgerald has 992 receiving yards and eight touchdown receptions in 14 career season-opening games and needs eight yards to become the fifth player with at least 1,000 career receiving yards and eight touchdown catches in season-opening games, joining Jerry Rice (1,385 yards, nine touchdowns), Andre Reed (1,225, 10), Randy Moss (1,194, 10) and Don Maynard (1,025, nine). All four receivers are members of the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

START ’EM EARLY: New York Jets rookie quarterback Sam Darnold, the No. 3 overall selection in the 2018 NFL Draft, is expected to make his first career start against Detroit on Monday Night Football at 7:10 p.m. on ESPN. With a start by Darnold on Monday, at least one rookie quarterback will have started in Week 1 in 11 consecutive seasons, the longest streak in the NFL since at least 1950.

The rookie quarterbacks to start in Week 1 since 2008:
SEASON – QUARTERBACK, TEAM (STARTING RECORD AS ROOKIE)
2008 – Joe Flacco, Baltimore (11-5)
2008 – Matt Ryan, Atlanta (11-5)
2009 – Mark Sanchez, New York Jets (8-7)
2009 – Matthew Stafford, Detroit (2-8)*
2010 – Sam Bradford, St. Louis Rams (7-9)*
2011 – Andy Dalton, Cincinnati (9-7)
2011 – Cam Newton, Carolina (6-10)*
2012 – Robert Griffin III, Washington (9-6)
2012 – Andrew Luck, Indianapolis (11-5)*
2012 – Ryan Tannehill, Miami (7-9)
2012 – Brandon Weeden, Cleveland (5-10)
2012 – Russell Wilson, Seattle (11-5)
2013 – E.J. Manuel, Buffalo (4-6)
2013 – Geno Smith, NeW York Jets (8-8)
2014 – Derek Carr, Oakland (3-13)
2015 – Marcus Mariota, Tennessee (3-13)
2015 – Jameis Winston, Tampa Bay (6-10)*
2016 – Dak Prescott, Dallas (13-3)
2016 – Carson Wentz, Philadelphia (7-9)
2017 – DeShone Kizer, Cleveland (0-15)
2018 – Sam Darnold, New York Jets (–)^
^Expected to start in Week 1
*No. 1 overall pick

Darnold, who will be 21 years, 97 days old on Monday, can become the youngest quarterback to start a season-opening game in the Super Bowl era. New England’s Drew Bledsoe previously set the record on September 5, 1993 against Buffalo at 21 years, 203 days old.

The youngest quarterbacks to start a season-opening game in the Super Bowl era:

SEASON – QUARTERBACK, TEAM (AGE AT TIME OF SEASON-OPENING START)
1993 – Drew Bledsoe, New England (21 years, 203 days)
2009 – Matthew Stafford, Detroit (21 years, 218 days)
2015 – Jameis Winston, Tampa Bay (21 years, 250 days)
2017 – DeShone Kizer, Cleveland (21 years, 250 days)
1968 – Greg Landry, Detroit (21 years, 272 days)
2018 – Sam Darnold, New York Jets (21 years, 97 days)^*
^Expected to start in Week 1
*Age on September 10, 2018

STELLAR STEELER: Pittsburgh wide receiver Antonio Brown has 9,910 receiving yards in his eight-year NFL career.

Brown, who will play in his 116th career game on Sunday at Cleveland at 1 p.m., can tie Torry Holt (116) for the second-fewest games to reach 10,000 receiving yards in NFL history.

The players to reach 10,000 career receiving yards in the fewest games in NFL history:

PLAYER – TEAM(S) (FEWEST GAMES TO 10,000 RECEIVING YARDS)
Calvin Johnson – Detroit (115)
Torry Holt – St. Louis Rams (116)
Lance Alworth – San Diego, Dallas (120)^
Jerry Rice – San Francsico (121)^
Marvin Harrison – Indianapolis (122)^
Antonio Brown – Pittsburgh (115)*
*Has 9,910 career receiving yards
^Pro Football Hall of Famer

LARRY LEGEND: Arizona wide receiver Larry Fitzgerald has recorded at least one reception in 211 consecutive games.

Fitzgerald, who faces Washington on Sunday at home in the desert, can pass Tony Gonzalez (211) for the second-longest streak of consecutive games with a catch in NFL history. Only Pro Football Hall of Famer Jerry Rice (274) has a longer such streak in league annals.

The players to record at least one catch in the most consecutive games in NFL history:

PLAYER – TEAM(S) (SEASONS) (MOST CONSECUTIVE GAMES WITH A CATCH)
Jerry Rice – San Francisco, Oakland (1985-2004) (274)^
Larry Fitzgerald – Arizona (2004-present)(211)*
Tony Gonzalez – Kansas City, Atlanta (2000-2013)(211)
*Active streak
^Pro Football Hall of Famer

Fitzgerald, who ranks eighth in NFL history with 110 career touchdown catches, can tie Gonzalez (111) for the seventh-most touchdown receptions in league annals.

The players with the most touchdown catches in NFL history:

PLAYER – TEAM(S) (TOUCHDOWN CATCHES)
Jerry Rice – San Francisco, Oakland, Seattle (197)^
Randy Moss – Minnesota, Oakland, New England, Tennessee, San Francisco (156)^
Terrell Owens – San Francisco, Philadelphia, Dallas, Buffalo, Cincinnati (153)^
Cris Carter – Philadelphia, Minnesota, Miami (130)^
Marvin Harrison – Indianapolis (128)^
Antonio Gates – San Diego/Los Angeles Chargers (114)*
Tony Gonzalez – Kansas City, Atlanta (111)
Larry Fitzgerald – Arizona (110)*
*Active
^Pro Football Hall of Famer

MOVING UP THE RANKS: Miami running back Frank Gore has 14,026 career rushing yards in his 13-year NFL career.​ With 76 rushing yards on Sunday against Tennessee, Gore will surpass Pro Football Hall of Famer Curtis Martin (14,101) for the fourth-most rushing yards in NFL history. All four players currently in front of Gore are enshrined in the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

The players with the most rushing yards in NFL history:

PLAYER – TEAM(S) (RUSHING YARDS)
Emmitt Smith – Dallas, Arizona (18,355)^
Walter Payton – Chicago (16,726)^
Barry Sanders – Detroit (15,269)^
Curtis Martin – New England, New York Jets (14,101)^
Frank Gore – San Francisco, Indianapolis, Miami (14,026)*
*Active
^Pro Football Hall of Famer

Washington running back Adrian Peterson (12,276 career rushing yards) needs 37 rushing yards on Sunday against Arizona (4:25 PM ET, FOX) to surpass Pro Football Hall of Famers Marshall Faulk (12,279) and Jim Brown (12,312) to climb into the top 10 in NFL history in rushing yards. With a rushing touchdown at Arizona on Sunday, Peterson would become the seventh player in NFL history with at least 12,000 career rushing yards and 100 rushing touchdowns. All six of the players with at least 12,000 rushing yards and 100 touchdown runs are enshrined in the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

The players with at least 12,000 rushing yards and 100 rushing touchdowns in NFL history:

PLAYER – TEAM(S) (RUSHING YARDS – RUSHING TDS)
Emmitt Smith – Dallas, Arizona (18,355 – 164)^
Walter Payton – Chicago (16,726 – 110)^
LaDainian Tomlinson – San Diego, New York Jets (13,684 – 145)^
Jim Brown – Cleveland (12,312 – 106)^
Marshall Faulk – Indianapolis, St. Louis (12,279 – 100)^
Marcus Allen – Los Angeles Raiders, Kansas City (12,243 – 123)^
Adrian Peterson – Minnesota, New Orleans, Arizona, Washington (12,276 – 99)*
*Active
^ Hall of Famer

CH-CH-CHANGES: There are rule changes galore for the 2018 season. Here are the following rules changes for the 2018 season:

• STANDARD FOR A CATCH: Changes the standard for a catch for a forward pass or interception in the field of play, at the sideline or in the end zone if a player, who is in bounds: (a) secures control of the ball in his hands or arms, prior to the ball touching the ground and (b) touches the ground inbounds with both feet or with any part of his body other than his hands and (c) after (a) and (b) have been fulfilled, performs any football act (e.g., tuck the ball away, extend it towards or over the goal line or the line to gain, take an additional step, turn upfield or avoid or ward off an opponent) or he maintains control of the ball long enough to do so.

• HELMET RULE: Makes lowering the head and initiating contact with the helmet a foul.

• DISQUALIFICATIONS: Authorizes the Senior Vice President of Officiating to instruct on-field game officials to disqualify a player for a flagrant non-football act when a foul for that act is called on the field.

• SCORING AT THE END OF REGULATION: Eliminates the requirement that a team who scores a touchdown at the end of regulation of a game to kick the extra point or go for a two-point conversion if it would not affect the outcome of the game.

• KICKOFF FORMATION: Modifies rules for a free kick formation and for blocking on a free kick.

• TOUCHBACKS: The playing rule that changes the spot of the next snap after a touchback resulting from a free kick to the 25-yard line is now permanent.

• ILLEGAL BATTING AND KICKING: Makes the penalties for Illegal Batting and Kicking the same (loss of 10 yards).

• OVERTIME: Provides that in overtime, if the team that possesses the ball first scores a field goal in its initial possession and the second team loses possession by an interception or a fumble, the down will be permitted to run to its conclusion, including awarding the points scored by either team during the down.

2018 SPECIAL PATCHES AND LOGOS: NFL teams will adorn a handful of special patches during the 2018 season to highlight league initiatives and commemorate special moments and teams in franchise history.

The NFL will celebrate A CRUCIAL CATCH and BREAST CANCER AWARENESS with a decal in Weeks 5, 6 and 7. In Weeks 9, 10 and 11, all teams will wear a camouflage ribbon decal on their helmets to celebrate SALUTE TO SERVICE games.

Additionally, several NFL franchises will be wearing special patches in 2018. The Green Bay Packers will celebrate their 100th season, while the Indianapolis Colts will commemorate their 35th season in Indianapolis and the Tennessee Titans
will memorialize their 20th season.

2018 SPECIAL PATCHES & LOGOS

TEAM/EVENT PATCH/DECAL
National Football League: All teams will wear a pink ribbon decal on their helmets to celebrate A Crucial Catch and Breast Cancer Awareness Month in Weeks 5, 6 and 7.
National Football League: All teams will wear a camouflage ribbon decal on their helmets to celebrate Salute to Service games during Weeks 9, 10 and 11.
Green Bay: 100th season patch.
Indianapolis: 35th season patch.
New York Jets: 50th anniversary patch of Super Bowl III during Week 6.
Tennessee: 20th season patch.

NFL RADIO 2018: WESTWOOD ONE & SIRIUSXM COVER THE NFL: Stuck at the inlaws and the ladies are hogging the TV? Stuck in traffic on the interstate? You can still listen to your favorit team. NFL fans can listen to games on the radio in a number of ways, including on Westwood One and SiriusXM NFL Radio.

WESTWOOD ONE remains the official network radio partner of the NFL, its 32nd consecutive season with that distinction.

The Westwood One NFL schedule features 70 national games, including the Thursday night Kickoff game, Monday Night Football, Sunday Night Football, Thursday Night Football, the London Games, the Thanksgiving Day tripleheader and the entire postseason, culminating with Super Bowl LIII in Atlanta. Westwood One also produces weekly specialty programs, including The NFL Today, NFL Preview, NFL Insider, NFL Sunday and NFL Fantasy Football Forecast.

Kevin Harlin and Hall of Famer Kurt Warner will be the lead broadcast crew, calling Monday Night Football and Super Bowl LIII for the network. Jim Gray anchors the pregame and halftime shows. Ian Eagle and Tony Boselli will once again be the broadcast crew for Thursday Night Football, while Kevin Kulger and Hall of Famer Jason Taylor return as the main crew for Sunday Night Football. Scott Graham serves as the studio host for those broadcasts.

In addition to being heard on more than 500 radio stations across the United States, all of Westwood One’s primetime NFL broadcasts can also be heard on SiriusXM Satellite Radio, via the TuneIn Radio app and through NFL Game Pass, which is available on NFL.com and the NFL mobile app. For complete information regarding Westwood One’s NFL coverage, including schedules, announcers, highlights, features, interviews and more, log on to westwoodonesports.com.

This year will mark the NFL’s 15th season on SiriusXM. SiriusXM creates and offers commercial-free music, premier sports talk and live events, comedy, news, exclusive talk and entertainment programming. SiriusXM provides live play-by-play of every NFL game from the preseason through Super Bowl LIII on satellite radios, as well as on the SiriusXM app and online at SiriusXM.com for its satellite radio subscribers.

SiriusXM NFL Radio (channel 88 on satellite radios and on the SiriusXM app) offers in-depth radio coverage of the NFL 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. SiriusXM NFL Radio offers a daily lineup of exclusive talk programming hosted by former NFL stars and radio personalities. Subscribers can also get SiriusXM NFL Radio programming on demand, allowing them to listen to their favorite shows when they want them, and giving them more chances to hear exclusive programming like the recent Town Hall broadcast with Super Bowl LII MVP QB Nick Foles, training camp tour broadcasts and more. For more information visit siriusxm.com/nflonsxm.

Strength of Schedule

Team (Pct., Record; Games vs. teams .500 or better; Games vs. 2017 playoff teams)
Green Bay (.539, 138-118-0; 10; 6)
Detroit (.535, 137-119-0; 9; 6)
New Orleans (.535, 137-119-0; 10; 8)
Tampa Bay (.531, 136-120-0; 10; 8)
Cleveland (.523, 134-122-0; 9; 6)
Los Angeles Rams (.523, 134-122-0; 10; 4)
Seattle (.523, 134-122-0; 10; 5)
Chicago (.520, 133-123-0; 9; 5)
Arizona (.520, 133-123-0; 9; 5)
New York Giants ((.520, 133-123-0; 9; 7)
Minnesota (.520, 133-123-0; 9; 5)
Carolina (.512, 131-125-0; 10; 6)
ATLANTA (.508, 130-126-0; 9; 6)
Washington (.504, 129-127-0; 10; 7)
San Francisco (.500, 128-128-0; 10; 4)
Dallas (.500, 128-128-0; 9; 7)
Miami (.500, 128-128-0; 8; 7)
Buffalo (.496, 127-129-0; 8; 5)
Kansas City (.492, 126-130-0; 9; 4)
Philadelphia (.492, 126-130-0; 9; 7)
Baltimore (.488, 125-131-0; 9; 8)
Indianapolis (.484, 124-132-0; 8; 7)
New England (.484, 124-132-0; 8; 7)
Los Angeles Chargers (.480, 123-133-0; 9; 6)
Denver (.477, 122-134-0; 9; 4)
Jacksonville (.477, 122-134-0; 8; 7)
New York Jets (.477, 122-134-0; 8; 7)
Pittsburgh (.477, 122-134-0; 9; 6)
Cincinnati (.473, 121-125-0; 9; 6)
Oakland (.473, 121-125-0; 9; 4)
Tennessee (.465, 119-137-0; 8; 5)
Houston (.453, 116-140-0; 8; 7)

I GET AROUND: The total distance traveled by all teams during the regular season will be 499,028 miles. The teams of the AFC West (96,328) have the highest combined mileage total of all divisions.

The remaining division totals ranking from highest to lowest are the NFC West (79,808), AFC South (67,130), NFC East (65,106), NFC North (54,658), AFC East (50,146), AFC North (46,892) and NFC South (38,960).

Three teams – Oakland (31,384), the Los Angeles Chargers (30,756) and Seattle (28,660), – will “travel around the world” at least once. A trip around the globe is 25,000 miles. That is a lot of frequent flyer miles.

Be sure to return your trays to the upright position.

TEAM – MILES
1 Oakland – 31,384
2 Los Angeles Chargers – 30,756
3 Seattle – 28,660
4 Jacksonville – 20,296
5 Philadelphia – 20,290
6 Los Angeles Rams – 19,414
7 Miami – 18,656
8 San Francisco – 18,334
9 Kansas City – 17,980
10 Houston – 17,454
11 Tennessee – 16,812
12 Dallas – 16,396
13 Denver – 16,208
14 New York Giants – 15,334
15 Detroit – 14,420
16 Minnesota – 14,360
17 Cleveland – 13,856
18 Arizona – 13,400
19 Pittsburgh – 13,180
20 Washington – 13,086
21 Chicago – 12,946
22 Green Bay – 12,932
23 Indianapolis – 12,568
24 Tampa Bay – 11,924
25 New Orleans – 11,864
26 New England – 11,576
27 Baltimore – 11,550
28 Buffalo – 10,224
29 New York Jets – 9,690
30 Cincinnati – 8,306
31 ATLANTA – 8,252
32 Carolina – 6,920

NFL CONTINUES INTERNATIONAL DEVELOPMENT WITH FOUR GAMES IN 2018: The NFL’s schedule of London Games for 2018 features three games at iconic Wembley Stadium, including three teams playing a regular-season game in London for the first time.

“We continue to be very excited by the growth of the NFL in the UK,” NFL commissioner Roger Goodell told USA Today. “The fans have demonstrated outstanding support and passion for the NFL over the past 11 seasons and we look forward to some great games in London this year.”

The 2018 London Series kicks off in Week 6 on Sunday, October 14 at 1 p.m. Eastern as Oakland hosts Seattle. The Raiders, the home team in London for a second time, welcome the Seahawks to Wembley for their first game in London.

This game will mark the third straight season and the fourth time in five years that the Raiders have hosted a regular season game internationally, having played games at Mexico City’s Estadio Azteca in each of the last two seasons, as well as making the team’s debut in London against the Miami Dolphins in 2014.

“The Seahawks are excited to be playing in London on October 14 against the Raiders,” Seahawks Owner Paul Allen told KING-TV. “We have a strong international following and are eager to celebrate the passion of the 12s in a city known for its enthusiastic support for sports.”

Over the following two weeks, two additional teams will make their London debuts as visiting teams.

The Tennessee Titans will be hosted by the Los Angeles Chargers on October 21 at 9:30 a.m. Eastern. “We are excited as a franchise to be playing in London,” Titans controlling owner Amy Adams Strunk told The Tennesseean “There is a great relationship developing between Nashville and London with music being the common thread. We are looking forward to showcasing our team to the NFL fans in London and throughout Europe.”

“Since we last visited London in 2008, the NFL’s popularity has continued to grow in the UK,” said Chargers president of business operations A.G. Spanos. “It was an honor to be part of the early wave of regular season games played abroad back then, and it is every bit the honor to represent the league in London this time around. We’re excited to introduce the Los Angeles Chargers brand, in person, to football fans in the United Kingdom this year.”

The Super Bowl champion Philadelphia Eagles will face Jacksonville in a matchup of 2017 playoff teams on October 28 at 9:30 a.m. Eastern. The Jaguars are playing a home game in London for the sixth straight season.

“I’m very much looking forward to it,” said Eagles owner Jeffery Lurie. “It’s the first time we’ve really had a chance to go over there and it’s nice to go over as Super Bowl champs. It’s going to be a big game. We’re playing an outstanding football team in the Jaguars. But I’m very much looking forward to it. I think London has a chance to be a franchise someday in the NFL.”

Building off the tremendous success of the Mexico Game Series, the NFL will play in Mexico for a third consecutive
season.

The Los Angeles Rams will host Kansas City at Estadio Azteca in Mexico City on November 19 at 8:15 p.m. Eastern. This will be the second Monday Night Football game at Estadio Azteca. In 2016, the Oakland Raiders hosted Houston in the first-ever Monday Night Football game played outside the US.

“Over the past two seasons, we have seen the extraordinary passion that exists for NFL football in Mexico,” said Goodell. “We are excited for another memorable event at Estadio Azteca as the Los Angeles Rams and Kansas City Chiefs head to Mexico City in 2018.”

The Rams and Chiefs will both play their first regular-season game in Mexico next season. The Chiefs played a preseason game against the Dallas Cowboys in Monterrey, Mexico on August 5, 1996, earning a 32-6 win over the Dallas Cowboys.

Both clubs are looking forward to the opportunity to play in Mexico City.

“Southern California and Mexico share strong historic and cultural ties and this game will provide an opportunity to celebrate the special connection between these two regions,” said Rams owner/chairman Stan Kroenke. “It is great to be participating in the NFL’s international games again and working with the league to grow the game. Mexico has one of the largest NFL fan bases in the world and we are excited to bring Rams football to the millions of fans there.”

“We are thrilled to be a part of the NFL’s international initiatives once again, and we are excited to face the Rams at historic Estadio Azteca,” said Kansas City Chiefs chairman & CEO CLARK HUNT. “The support for the NFL in Mexico has grown significantly since our initial trip in 1996. We look forward to returning to Mexico and connecting with a new generation of fans this season.”

In 2017, the Ministry of Tourism and the NFL announced an agreement to play three NFL regular-season games from 2019 to 2021, having achieved positive results in tourism and the presence of Mexico’s brand through the NFL’s previous games in Mexico. The previous agreement covered games from 2016 to 2018.

The Ministry of Tourism highlighted the importance of high impact sporting events for the promotion of Mexico’s tourism both nationally and internationally. This agreement is part of the strategies that are implemented within this sector to increase economic impact.

The relationship with the League has served as a platform to significantly boost the tourism industry in Mexico, with fans taking advantage of the opportunity to expand their trips and explore the country.

WHAT TO LOOK FOR (PLAYERS): Tom Brady, New England: can join Peyton Manning (14) and Drew Brees (12) as the only players in NFL history to pass for at least 4,000 yards in 10 seasons. Brady has passed for at least 4,000 yards nine times in 18 career seasons (see Rivers note).

Brady needs 21 touchdown passes (incl. postseason) to surpass Peyton Manning (579) for the most touchdown passes in NFL history (incl. postseason). In 18 seasons, Brady has 559 career touchdown passes, including the postseason.

Brady needs 12 touchdown passes to join P. Manning (539) and Favre (508) as the only players to reach 500 career regular-season touchdown passes. In 18 seasons, Brady has 488 career touchdown passes in the regular season (see Brees note).

Brady needs 3,841 passing yards to become the fourth quarterback in NFL history with at least 70,000 passing yards. In 18 seasons, Brady has 66,159 career passing yards.

Drew Brees, New Orleans: needs 1,394 passing yards to surpass Brett Favre (71,838) for second place in NFL history in passing yards and 1,496 yards to surpass Peyton Manning (71,940) as NFL’s all-time leading passer. In 17 seasons, Brees has 70,445 career passing yards.

Brees needs 79 completions to surpass Brett Favre (6,300) for the most completions in NFL history. In 17 seasons, Brees has 6,222 career completions. Brees needs 12 touchdown passes to join P. Manning (539) and Favre (508) as the only players to reach 500 career touchdown passes. In 17 seasons, Brees has 488 career touchdown passes (see Brady note).

Ben Roethlisberger, Pittsburgh, needs 411 passing yards to pass John Elway (51,475) for seventh place in NFL history in career passing yards. Roethlisberger has 51,065 career passing yards in 14 seasons (see Rivers note).

Philip Rivers, Los Angeles Chargers: needs 1,128 passing yards to pass John Elway (51,475) for seventh place in NFL history in career passing yards. In 14 seasons, Rivers has 50,348 career passing yards (see Roethlisberger note).

With at least 4,000 passing yards in 2018, Rivers (nine) would join Peyton Manning (14) and Drew Brees (12) as the only players in NFL history with 10 seasons with at least 4,000 passing yards (see Brady note).

Cam Newton, Carolina: needs 609 rushing yards to pass Randall Cunningham (4,928) for the second-most career rushing yards by a quarterback in NFL history. In seven seasons, Newton has 4,320 career rushing yards.

Newton can become the first quarterback in NFL history to rush for at least 700 yards in four seasons.

Matt Ryan, Atlanta: can become the second quarterback in NFL history with at least 4,000 passing yards in eight consecutive seasons, joining Drew Brees (12) (see Stafford note).

Matthew Stafford, Detroit: can become the second quarterback in NFL history with at least 4,000 passing yards in eight consecutive seasons, joining Drew Brees (12) (see Ryan note).

Russell Wilson, Seattle, has passed for at least 3,000 yards and 20 touchdowns in each of his first six seasons and can join P. Manning as the only quarterbacks to reach 3,000 passing yards and 20 touchdowns in each of their first seven seasons.

Larry Fitzgerald, Arizona: needs 92 receptions to pass Tony Gonzalez (1,325) for second place on the NFL’s all-time receptions list. In 14 seasons, Fitzgerald has 1,234 career catches.

Fitzgerald needs 390 receiving yards to pass Terrell Owens (15,934) for second place on the NFL’s all-time receiving yards list. Fitzgerald has 15,545 receiving yards in 14 career seasons.

Fitzgerald needs 48 receptions to pass Jerry Rice (1,281) for the most receptions with one team in NFL history. In 14 seasons with the Cardinals, Fitzgerald has 1,234 receptions.

With 1,000 receiving yards, Fitzgerald (nine) would tie Randy Moss (10) for the second most 1,000-yard receiving seasons in NFL history.

Fitzgerald (five) can tie Brandon Marshall (six) for the most career seasons with at least 100 catches and 1,000 receiving yards (see Brown note).

Antonio Brown, Pittsburgh: needs three games with at least 10 receptions to tie Andre Johnson (22) for the most career games with at least 10 catches. Brown has 19 such games in eight seasons.

Brown (582) can surpass Wes Welker (672 from 2007-2012) for the most receptions by a player over any six-season span in NFL history. Brown (7,848) can also surpass Jerry Rice (8,759 from 1990-95) for the most receiving yards by a player over any six-season span in NFL history.

Brown (five) can tie Brandon Marshall (six) for the most career seasons with at least 100 catches and 1,000 receiving yards (see Fitzgerald note).

Jarvis Landry, Cleveland: needs 27 catches to surpass Larry Fitzgerald (426) for the most receptions by a player in his first five seasons in NFL history. In four seasons, Landry has 400 career receptions.

Odell Beckham, Jr., New York Giants: has 313 receptions in 47 career games and needs seven receptions in his first three games to surpass Lionel Taylor (319) for the most receptions by a player through his first 50 career games.

Beckham has 4,424 receiving yards in 47 career games and needs 362 receiving yards in his first three games to surpass Lance Alworth (4,785) for the most receiving yards by a player through his first 50 career games.

Michael Thomas, New Orleans: can join Odell Beckham, Jr. as the only players in NFL history to record at least 90 receptions in each of their first three seasons.

Julio Jones, Atlanta: has recorded at least 1,400 receiving yards in each of the past four seasons and can become the first player in NFL history to register five consecutive seasons with at least 1,400 receiving yards.

Brandon Marshall, Seattle: has 959 receptions in 12 career seasons and needs 41 catches to become the 15th player in NFL history to record 1,000 career receptions.

Rob Gronkowski, New England: can surpass Tony Gonzalez (four) and Jason Witten (four) for the most 1,000-yard seasons by an NFL tight end. Gronkowski has four career seasons with at least 1,000 receiving yards.

Fran Gore, Miami: needs 1,000 rushing yards to join Emmitt Smith (11), Curtis Martin (10), Walter Payton (10) and Barry Sanders (10) as the only players in NFL history to rush for 1,000 yards in at least 10 different seasons. In 13 seasons, Gore has rushed for 1,000 yards nine times.

Mark Ingram, New Orleans, needs 735 rushing yards to surpass Deuce McAllister (6,096) as the franchise’s all-time leading rusher. In seven seasons with the Saints, Ingram has 5,362 rushing yards.

Ingram needs six rushing touchdowns to surpass McAllister (49) as the club’s all-time leader. Ingram has 44 rushing touchdowns in seven seasons.

Melvin Gordon, Los Angeles Chargers: can become the third player in team history to record at least 1,200 scrimmage yards and 10 total touchdowns in three consecutive seasons, joining Lance Alworth (eight consecutive seasons) and LaDainian Tomlinson (four).

Duke Johnson, Jr., Cleveland: can become the first running back in NFL history with at least 500 receiving yards in each of his first four seasons.

Julius Peppers, Carolina: needs six sacks to pass Kevin Greene (160) for the third-most in the NFL since the sack became an official statistic in 1982. In 16 seasons, Peppers has 154.5 career sacks.

J.J. Watt, Houston: can become the second player to record four seasons with at least 15 sacks since the sack became an official statistic in 1982. Reggie White had five such seasons.

Adam Vinatieri, Indianapolis: needs seven converted field goals to pass Morten Andersen (565) for the most made field goals in NFL history. In 22 seasons, Vinatieri has converted 559 career field goals.

Vinatieri needs 58 points to surpass Andersen (2,544) for the most points scored in NFL history. Vinatieri has 2,487 career points in 22 seasons.

Vinatieri has appeared in 337 career games in 22 seasons and can become the fourth player in NFL history to appear in 350 career games.

Stephen Gostkowski, New England: has led the league in scoring five times in his career and can surpass Don Hutson (five) and Gino Cappelletti (five) as the only player to lead the league in points scored six times.

Gostkowski has led the league in field goals three times in his career and can join Lou Groza (six), Ward Cuff (four), Jack Manders (four) and Mark Moseley (four) as the only player to lead the league in field goals at least four times. With 30 made field goals, Gostkowski can become the first player in NFL history with six seasons of 30 or more field goals (see Tucker note).

Justin Tucker, Baltimore: can become the first player in NFL history with six seasons of 30 or more made field goals (see Gostkowski note).

Shane Lechler, Houston: has appeared in 286 career games in 18 seasons and can become the 11th player in NFL history to appear in 300 career games.

HOME SWEET HOME: Seattle, who hosts Dallas in Week 3, have won nine consecutive home openers, the longest active streak in the league. Pittsburgh, who opens at home in Week 2 against Kansas City, have the most wins (50) among AFC teams in home openers.

HEAD COACHES: New England’s Bill Belichick is 15-8 (.652) on Kickoff Weekend and his 15 wins are the most among active head coaches…Belichick and Kansas City’s Andy Reid (11-8; .579) are the only active head coaches who have won at least 10 Kickoff Weekend games…Green Bay’s Mike McCarthy and Reid have won three consecutive games on Kickoff Weekend, the longest current streak among active head coaches… Vance Joseph (1-0) of the Broncos, Dirk Koetter (1-0) of the Buccaneers, Sean McDermott (1-0) of the Bills, Sean McVay (1-0) of the Rams and Doug Pederson (2-0) of the Eagles are the only active head coaches with perfect records on Kickoff Weekend…and five head coaches – Chicago’s Matt Nagy, Detroit’s Matt Patricia, Indianapolis’ Frank Reich, Tennessee’s Mike Vrable and Arizona’s Steve Wilks – make their Kickoff Weekend debuts in 2018.

New teams making the playoffs and winning divisions, consistent teams excelling once again, records falling and young players making their mark all helped shape the story of the 2017 season.

Week 17 came right down to the wire as three playoff spots and one division title – the NFC South – were decided onbthe last day of the season. The excitement of Week 17 was due in part to having 16 divisional games played on the season’s final day, a tradition instituted in 2010.

Every team enters the 2018 season with a trip to Atlanta for Super Bowl LIII in mind and below are a few reasons why.

• Five of the eight divisions in 2017 were won by a team that finished in third or fourth place in the division the previous season – Jacksonville (AFC South), the Los Angeles Rams (NFC West), Minnesota (NFC North), New Orleans (NFC South) and Philadelphia (NFC East).

• Since the 12-team playoff format was adopted in 1990, at least four teams have qualified for the playoffs in every season that were not in the postseason the year before. Eight teams that missed the postseason in 2016 – Buffalo (9-7), Carolina (11-5), Jacksonville (10-6), Los Angeles Rams (11-5), Minnesota (13-3), New Orleans (11-5), Philadelphia (13-3) and Tennessee (9-7) – accomplished the feat in 2017, tied with the 2003 season for the most such teams since 1990.

• The Eagles, who finished last in the NFC East with a 7-9 record in 2016, became the second team since 2003 to go from “worst-to-first” en route to a Super Bowl victory, joining the 2009 New Orleans Saints.

• The Jaguars, who finished in last place in the AFC South in 2016, won their first division title since realignment in 2002 last season and advanced to the AFC Championship Game.

As was the case the last few seasons, there will be two Monday night games on the docket in week 1 and all 32 teams will be on primetime season. As for Thanksgiving? Yes, there’s going to be football (just like there’ll be your cousin Ruth’s cream corn casserole.. it’s so bad even the squirrels didn’t want it). Detroit and Dallas will play at home, with the Lions playing the early game on CBS when they host NFC North rival Chicago at 12:30, while the Cowboys host NFC East rival Washington in Jerry World at 4:30 p.m. on FOX and the day concludes in the Big Easy as NFC South foes Atlanta and New Orleans close out the day’s action at 8:20 p.m. on NBC.

Because this is the first week of the 2018 campaign, all the games are going to be designated “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 57 last June and dates a 42-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?”) Week one also features seven rematches from the 2017 campaign (Baltimore at Cincinnati, Houston at New England, Tennesse at Miami, Tampa Bay at New Orleans, Chicago at Green Bay, Kansas City at Los Angeles Chargers and Washington at Arizona).

One game’s in the books. 15 more to go. Here’s the Sunday and Monday picks for week 1! (Records are from last season)

Buffalo (9-7) at Baltimore (9-7), 1 p.m. on CBS and DirecTV 705. Wings vs. Crabcakes. A pair of 9-7s meet in Charm City to open the 2018 campaign when Baltimore hosts the Buffalo Bills.

The Bills return to action after their first trip to the post-season in two decades, thanks to a Ravens loss to Cincinnati in the season finale, then falling at Jacksonville 10-7 in the AFC Wild Card game last season. In that contest, the Bills and Jaguars played a scoreless first quarter, went to the intermission tied at 3-3 and then Jacksonville take the lead for good when TE Ben Koyack and Blake Bortles connected on a 1-yard TD pass with 42 seconds left in the third quarter. Jacksonville then held off a late Bills rally that would have tied the contest and possibly sending things into overtime. Jacksonville outrushed Buffalo 155-130 and Bortles (87 yards passing) led all rushers with 88 yards, while Tyrod Taylor (134 yards) was sacked twice and picked off once. Buffalo was 7 of 18 on third down (the Bills were 1 of 1 on fourth down) and actually ruled the clock, keeping the ball for 32:37, while the Jagaurs, who were 2 of 12 and 1 of 1 on third and fourth down, kept the pigskin for 27:23.

Baltimore is looking for redemption after they were knocked out of the playoff picture by Cincinnati in their season finale at home, falling to the Bengals 31-27 in Charm City. Baltimore trailed 17-10 at the half, then chipped away at the Bengals’ lead and took over with 8:48 left in regulation when Joe Flacco (203 yards, sack, interception) and Mike Wallace connected on a 6-yard TD strike. After Baltimore and Cincinnati traded punts, the Bengals got the ball back with 2:43 left to play and used a 90-yard, 11-play drive (aided by a pair of Raven penalties) to take the lead back for keeps when Andy Dalton and WR Tyler Boyd connected on a 49-yard toss with 44 seconds left. Baltimore would get the ball back in an effort to reclaim the lead but the Ravens’ drive fell short. The Bengals outrusehd Baltimore 146-118 (Joe Mixon led all rushers with 96 yards), while Dalton threw for 222 yards and three TDs, including the game-winner. Baltimore was 5 of 17 on third down (the Ravens were 1 of 2 on fourth down) and kept the ball for 31:21, while the Bengals, who held the ball for 28:39, went 5 of 15 and 1 of 1 on third and fourth downs.

Baltimore leads the series 4-3 and the Ravens have outscored the Bills 133-109. Their last meeting took place in Charm City in 2016 and the Ravens were 13-7 winners, while the Bills’ last win in the series came along the shores of Lake Erie in 2013, coming away 23-20 winners. The oddsmakers in Vegas like the Ravens as a 7-point favorite with a 39 1/2 over/under. Both numbers make sense and both teams could make the post-season. Baltimore takes the win at home and covers the 7.

Pittsburgh (13-3) at Cleveland (0-16), 1 p.m. on CBS and DirecTV 706. A pair of teams looking for redemption meet along the shores of Lake Erie as Ben Roethlisberger and the Steelers take on the Cleveland Browns in an AFC North opener.

The Steelers limp into the season opener after they were taken to the woodshed by Jacksonville in the AFC Divisional Playoffs, losing 45-42 at a somewhat chilly (18 degrees, wind chill of 18) Heinz Field. Trailing 28-14 at the intermission, Pittsburgh pulled to within seven with 9:09 in the third quarter as LeVeono Bell caught a 19-yard TD pass from Roethlisberger. Trailing 28-21 after 45 minutes of football in the Steel City, the fourth quarter became a slugfest of sorts, with Pittsburgh outscoring Jacksonville 21-17 in the final frame, pulling to within 3 with one second left when Ju-Ju Smith-Schuester and Roethlisberger connected on the game’s final scoring play, a four-yard toss but could come no closer.

Jacksonville outrushed the Steelers 164-83, with Jaguars RB Leonard Fournette leading the way with 109 yards and three TDs, while Blake Bortles threw for 214 yards and a TD, while Roethlisberger threw for 469 yards and five TDs and an interception along with a pair of sacks. The Steelers were 7 of 16 on third downs but had success on fourth down tries, going 4 of 6 and kept the ball for 31:10, while the Jaguars were 28:50 in time of possession, going 8 of 14 and 1 of 1 on third and fourth downs.

For Browns fans, after going 1-31 in the last two seasons (they were 1-15 in 2016), their fan base is hopeful that they will be better than what they were last year.

Pittsburgh leads the series 72-58, they’ve outscored the Browns 2,666-2,501 and the Steelers have taken wins in their last six meetings, including sweeping the series last year (Cleveland’s last win over Pittsburgh came in 2014 in the Buckeye State, as they would take a 31-10 win in 2014).

Meeting number one… week one along the shores of Lake Erie and Pittsburgh held off a late Browns second-half rally, taking a 21-18 win in the process. The Steelers led 14-7 at the break before the Browns managed to outscore Pittsburgh in the second half 11-7. As far as rushing was concerned in the first meeting… neither team came anywhere near the 100-yard mark but Cleveland outrushed Pittsburgh 57-35, while Roethlisberger burned Cleveland for 263 yards and a pair of TDs.

Browns QB DeShone Kizer threw for 222 yards and a TD toss to Corey Coleman to pull his club to within three after the Browns try for a 2-point conversion was successful but was sacked seven times (Both Roethlisberger and Kizer threw an interception in the contest) and both clubs struggled on third down tries (Pittsburgh was 5 of 13, Cleveland was 3 of 12) but the Browns struck pay dirt on fourth down, going 2 of 2. Cleveland did rule the clock and kept the ball for 31:10, while the Steelers in the first meeting kept the pigskin for 28:50.

That was week one.

Meeting two in the Steel City in week 17 in somewhat chilly weather on New Year’s Eve afternoon (how cold, you ask? Temperature in the first meeting was a balmy 62 degrees… in the week 17 contest, with the Browns out of the playoff photo, it was 11 degress with snow and a wind chill of 5 degrees). Despite being outscored 10-7 in the third quarter (the two teams went scoreless in the fourth), Pittsburgh once again found themselves on the right end of the scoreboard, taking a 28-24 win at Heinz Field. Pittsburgh led 21-14 at the intermission before Cleveland rallied to make the contest a bit closer than Steeler fans wanted. Pittsburgh outrushed the Browns 124-102 with RB Stevan Ridley leading the way for all rushers with 80 yards and a TD. Landry Jones, taking over for Roethlisberger, threw for 239 yards and a TD to WR JuJu Smith-Schuster (who also had a 96-yard kickoff return in the third quarter. Smith-Schuster was good for 143 yards and the TD catch as well as the special teams score.

As far as third down tries in the second meeting? The Browns were a little better on third down, going 7 of 15 and ruled the clock again, keeping the ball for 30:55, while the Steelers were a dismal 3 of 10 (both clubs were 0 of 2 on fourth down) and kept the ball for 29:05.

In the week one affair along the shores of Lake Erie, Pittsburgh was a 9 1/2-point favorite with a 46 1/2 over/under but won by 3 and both teams combined for 39 points, missing the over/under. The Steelers were favored by 13 in the regular season finale and won by 4. That was the bad news. The good news? Both teams covered the 39 1/2 over/under, combining for 52 points.
Pittsburgh’s favored by 4 1/2 and the over/under’s 41 1/2. Can the Steelers bounce back from the playoff loss at home? Can the Browns ever right their ship? Expect Cleveland to give Pittsburgh problems but the Steelers win on the road and could very well cover the 5.

Cincinnati (7-9) at Indianapolis (4-12), 1 p.m. on CBS and DirecTV 707. A pair of sub-500 teams open the 2018 season in the Hoosier State as the Colts host Andy Dalton and the Cincinnati Bengals at Lucas Oil Stadium.

Cincinnati in their season finale against Baltimore, rallied late in the contest and came away 31-27 winners in Charm City. The Bengal win did two things. First, it knocked Baltimore out of the playoff party and second, it put Buffalo into the playoffs. Cincinnati led 17-10 at the half, then saw the Ravens chip away at their lead and Baltimore took over with 8:48 left in regulation when Joe Flacco (203 yards, sack, interception) and Mike Wallace connected on a 6-yard TD strike. After Baltimore and Cincinnati traded punts, the Bengals got the ball back with 2:43 left to play and used a 90-yard, 11-play drive (aided by a pair of Raven penalties) to take the lead back for keeps when Dalton and WR Tyler Boyd connected on a 49-yard toss with 44 seconds left. Baltimore would get the ball back in an effort to reclaim the lead but the Ravens’ drive fell short. The Bengals outrusehd Baltimore 146-118 (Joe Mixon led all rushers with 96 yards), while Dalton threw for 222 yards and three TDs, including the game-winner. Baltimore was 5 of 17 on third down (the Ravens were 1 of 2 on fourth down) and kept the ball for 31:21, while the Bengals, who held the ball for 28:39, went 5 of 15 and 1 of 1 on third and fourth downs.

The Colts used a pair of Adam Vinatieri field goals in the final quarter against Houston to take a 22-13 win over the Texans at Lucas Oil Stadium. Trailing 13-7 at the half, the Colts went on to score their final 15 points of the contest in the second half unchallenged. Colts RB Frank Gore led all rushers with 100 yards, while Indy outrushed the Texans 146-85 and Jacoby Brisset threw for 114 yards (for the Texans, T.J. Yeats threw for 137 yards with a pair of sacks). The Colts on third down were 6 of 13 and held on to the ball for 31:13, while the Texans were 5 of 11 on third down and kept the ball for 28:47.

Including contests that were played in Baltimore, when the Colts called Charm City home, they lead the series 17-11 and Indy has outscored Cincy 716-621. They met in week 17 in Charm City, with nothing on the line and the Bengals led 17-10 and knocked the Ravens out of the AFC playoffs, in a “win and get in” scenario, taking a 31-28 win at M&T Bank Stadium. Trailing 27-24 with 44 seconds left in regulation, Cincinnati used an 11-play, 90-yard drive, using 1:59 of clock to take the lead back for keeps when Andy Dalton and WR Tyler Boyd connected on a 49-yard TD pass to take the win. The drive was aided by a defensive holding penalty after Ravens S Eric Weddle intercepted Dalton in the period. Baltimore would get the ball back after the last score of the contest but the final Ravens drive fell short, giving the ball back to the Bengals, who managed to run out the clock.

The Bengals outrushed Baltimore 146-118 and Cincinnati RB Jarod Mixon led all rushers with 96 yards on the ground, while Dalton threw for 222 yards and three TDs, including the game winner (Flacco threw for 203 yards and a TD and an interception; both Dalton and Flacco were sacked once). The Bengals were 5 of 15 on third down (1 of 1 on fourth down) and kept the ball for 28:39; as for the Ravens, they were 5 of 17 and 1 of 2 on third and fourth down, keeping the pigskin for 31:21.

The odds makers liked Baltimore and made them a 9 1/2-point favorite but the Bengals would win by 3. The two teams did manage to cover the 40 1/2 over/under with 59 points. Vegas likes the Colts as a 3-point favorite in the Hoosier State with the over/under at 48. Indy may not cover the 3 but they win back home again in Indiana.

Houston (4-12) at New England (13-3), 1 p.m. on CBS and DirecTV 708. A pair of QBs, one with Super Bowl rings under his belt, the other looking to win his first, meet in western Massachusetts as the AFC champion Patriots host the Houston Texans in Foxboro.

Houston, who look to have QB De Shaun Watson (knee) and DT J.J. Watt (knee) back after their injuries last season, saw a 13-7 lead at the half against Indianapolis get away from them as the Colts used a pair of Adam Vinatieri field goals in the final quarter against Houston to take a 22-13 win over the Texans at Lucas Oil Stadium. The Colts went on to score their final 15 points of the contest in the second half unchallenged. Colts RB Frank Gore led all rushers with 100 yards, while Indy outrushed the Texans 146-85 and Jacoby Brisset threw for 114 yards (for the Texans, T.J. Yeats threw for 137 yards with a pair of sacks). The Colts on third down were 6 of 13 and held on to the ball for 31:13, while the Texans were 5 of 11 on third down and kept the ball for 28:47.

New England looks to rebound from their 41-34 loss to Philadelphia in Super Bowl 52, giving the Eagles their first Lombardi Trophy. Trailing 22-12 at the intermission at US Bank Stadium last February, the Patriots would take their only lead of the contest at 33-32 with 9:22 left in regulation when TE Rob Gronkowski and Brady hooked up on a 4-yard TD pass. The Eagles would then take back control and scored the final 10 points of the contest. Philly outrushed New England 164-113, with Brady throwing for 505 yards and three TDs, while Zack Ertz threw for 373 yards and three TDs and caught a TD pass early in the contest. New England went 5 of 10 on third down tries in the contest (the Pats were 1 of 2 on fourth down) and held on to the ball for 25:56, while the Eagles ruled the clock and held the ball for 34:04, while going 10 of 16 and 2 of 2 on third and fourth down tries.

New England leads the series 7-1 and they have outscored the Texans 256-145. New England has won the last five regular season contests, including a 36-33 win last year in Foxboro (Houston’s lone win in the series came in 2009 in the Lone Star State by a final of 34-27).

They squared off in Foxboro in week three and it was a close contest throughout, as the Pats took a slim 21-20 lead with them to the intermission, then trailed 33-28 with 23 seconds left when Brady and WR Brandin Cooks connected on a 25-yard TD toss with 23 seconds left. Despite being sacked five times, Brady did manage to throw for 378 yards and five TDs (including the game winner), while Watson threw for 301 yards and two TDs. Houston, who was 6 of 14 on third down conversions, outrushed New England 125-59 and held the ball for 33:38 to New England’s 26:22 (the Pats were 6 of 13 on third down tries in Foxboro). Although they were favored by 13, the Pats came away winning by a mere three points but both teams covered the 45 1/2 over/under, tallying 69 points in the contest. The defending AFC champs are favored by 6 and the over/under is 51. Both teams would like nothing more than redemption, New England for losing Super Bowl 52 and Houston for losing their two stars to injuries. While the Texans will make it closer than the 6, Brady and the Pats take the win at home.

Tennessee (9-7) at Miami (6-10), 1 p.m. on FOX and DirecTV 709. Mariota vs. Brady. They meet in Foxboro and meet in the season opener at Gillette Stadium as Tennessee travels to New England for a Sunday afternoon showdown in western Massachusetts.

Tennessee comes into the 2018 season opener with a 35-14 loss to New England in the AFC Divisional Playoff Game at Foxboro. Trailing 21-7 at the half (they led 7-0 at the end of the first quarter), New England held the Titans in check, outscoring them 14-7 in the final 30 minutes of play. Held to 65 yards on the ground, the Pats ran for 101 yards, while Tom Brady threw for 337 yards and three TDs (one to Rob Gronkowski). Tennessee’s Marcus Mariota did manage to throw for 254 yards and a pair of TDs to WR Corey Davis but was sacked eight times in the contest. Tennessee was 5 of 15 on third down tries and 2 of 3 on fourth down while keeping the ball for 27:04; as for Brady and the Pats? They were 11 of 17 on third down and kept the ball for 32:56.

As for Miami, they come off a 22-16 to AFC East rival Buffalo in the 2017 season finale at Hard Rock Stadium. Although they trailed 10-0 at the half, Miami did manage to outscore Buffalo in the second half by a 16-12 margin. Miami was outrushed by Buffalo 126-93 and David Fales, who took over for Jay Cutler, threw for 265 yards and a TD. The Bills, who waited for their playoff fate to be decided after their win in their locker room (Baltimore was hosting Cincinnati in a late afternoon contest), was paced by Tyrod Taylor, who threw for 204 yards, despite being sacked four times. Miami was 5 of 13 on third down (the ‘Fins were 1 of 3 on fourth down) and held on to the ball for 28:56, while the Bills were 5 of 12 on third down, keeping the ball for 31:04.

Including games that were played in Houston, when the Titans were known as the Oilers and the Dolphins played their home games at the Orange Bowl, Miami leads the series 20-16 and the “fins have outscored Tennessee 683-675. Miami won the last meeting between the clubs last year in the Sunshine State, taking a 16-10 win, while the Titans’ last win in the series also came in the Sunshine State, as Tennessee would triumph 30-17 in 2016.

In the week five contest at Hard Rock Stadium last year, Miami led 10-3 at the break before Tennessee rallied in the third quarter when Matt Cassel, who took over for Mariotta, connected with TE Phillip Supernaw on an 11-yard TD toss with 7:17 left in the quarter. Miami would take the lead back for good in the fourth quarter when QB Jay Cutler and WR Jarvis Landry hooked up on a 6-yard TD pass early in the final quarter of action. Miami outrushed Tennessee 100-69 and Dolphins RB Joseph Ajayi led the way with 77 yards on the ground, while the Titans’ DeMarco Murray tallied 58 with Cassel (141 yards, six sacks) and Cutler (92 yards, interception) each throwing a TD in the contest. Tennessee was a somewhat dismal 2 of 13 on third down tries in the Sunshine State and kept the ball for 30:15, while the ‘Fins, who held the pigskin for 29:45, went 5 of 15 on third down.

Although Tennessee was favored by 3, the Dolphins would win by 6, covering the spread. As for the 43 1/2 over/under? It was safe, as both teams combined for only 26 points. This time, the Titans are favored by 1 1/2 and the over/under’s 45. If for no other reason, this one might be worth your time. Miami gets revenge from last year and takes the win, covering the 1 1/2.

San Francisco (6-10) at Minnesota (13-3), 1 p.m. on FOX and DirecTV 710. A pair of improved teams meet in the Twin Cities as San Francisco takes on Minnesota in the Great Indoors.

The 49ers struggled through the first part of the 2017 season, losing nine of their first ten games, then winning five of their last six games, including a 34-13 win over the Los Angeles Rams at the Coliseum. Leading 20-6 at the break, the 49ers took control of things in the second half and never looked back. San Francisco outrushed the Rams 171-102 and Jimmy Garoppolo threw for 292 yards with a pair of TDs and a pair of interceptions, while the Rams, who rested most of their starters afte clinching the NFC West, were paced by Sean Mannion, who threw for 169 yards with three sacks. San Francisco was 6 of 12 on third down conversions in southern California and held the ball for 29:09, while the Rams ruled the clock and kept the ball for 30:51, going 5 of 15 on third down, 1 of 1 on fourth down.

In their last game, the NFC championship game in Philadelphia, the Purple Gang led 7-0 thanks to a 25-yard TD pass from Case Keenum to WR Kyle Rudolph to open the scoring in that contest, then saw the Eagles score all 38 of their points unchallenged to drop a 38-7 decision at Lincoln Financial Field. The Eagles, who would win Super Bowl 52 two weeks later, held Minnesota to 70 yards rushing, while they tallied 110 yards of their own and Keenum threw for 271 yards but was picked off twice (Philly’s Nick Foles threw for 352 yards and three TDs). The Vikings, hoping to be the first team to host and play in a Super Bowl in their own building, were 6 of 13 on third down conversions in the City of Brotherly Love (0 of 2 on fourth down) and held the ball for 25:56, while the eventual Super Bowl champs ruled the clock, keeping the ball for 34:04, going 10 of 14 on third down.

Including games that were played in Bloomington, the Metrodome and Candlestick Park, the Vikings lead the series 21-19-1, while the 49ers have outscored Minnesota 925-905. They last met on the West Coast in 2015 and the 49ers came out on top 20-3, while Minnesota’s last win in the series came in the Twin Cities in 2012 by a final of 24-13. Minnesota’s favored by 6 1/2 and the over/under’s 46. While the 49ers got a lot better over the last six games in their 2017 campaign, the Vikings want to repeat as kings of the NFC North mountain. Minnesota may not cover the 6 but they take the win in the Land of 10,000 Lakes.

Tampa Bay (5-11) at New Orleans (11-5), 1 p.m. on FOX and DirecTV 711. A pair NFC South rivals sqaure off in the Big Easy as Tampa Bay travels to New Orleans to face off against Drew Brees and the Saints in the Superdome. The season opener for both clubs will have their major stars out of the contest due to suspension (Tampa Bay’s Jameis Winston, suspended for violating the NFL’s conduct policy; New Orleans’ Mark Ingram, suspended for violating the NFL’s substance policy).

Tampa Bay suffered through a somewhat dismal season in the NFC South and the Bucs look to either be kings of the NFC South mountain or make sure that New Orleans doesn’t repeat.

New Orleans looks to erase the heartbreaking 29-24 last-second loss at Minnesota in the NFC Divisonal Game at US Bank Stadium. Trailing 17-7 after 45 minutes of play (New Orleans trailed 17-0 at the half), the Saints managed to outscore the Vikings 17-12 in the final quarter of play and led 24-23 with 25 seconds left on a 43-yard field goal by Will Lutz. That lead would last all of the 25 seconds that were left as Saints fans saw their hopes dashed and hearts broken when WR Stefan Diggs and QB Case Keenum connected on a 61-yard TD pass, sending the Vikings to the NFC Championship. Brees threw for 294 yards and three TDs (with two sacks and two interceptions), while Keenum threw for 318 yards and the game-winning score in the Land of 10,000 Lakes. Minnesota outrushed New Orleans 95-80 and the Saints were 2 of 9 on third down (1 of 1 on fourth down), with New Orleans keeping the ball for 26:43, while the Vikings held the ball for 33:17 (including the final 25 seconds), going 10 of 17 on third down tries.

New Orleans holds a 32-20 lead in the series and has outscored Tampa Bay 1,148-965. They met twice last year and split the series in 2017, each taking wins in their home facility.

The first meeting? Week nine in the Big Easy and the Saints manhandled Tampa Bay 30-10 in the Mercedes-Benz Superdome. New Orleans led 16-3 at the intermission and was in complete control in the contest, outrushing Tampa Bay 151-87 (Mark Ingram led all rushers with 77 yards). Brees threw for 263 yards and a pair of TDs, while Winston threw for 67 yards and was sacked twice before being replaced by Ryan Fitzpatrick to start the second half. In the first contest, the Saints were 7 of 13 on third down tries and kept the ball for 32:18, while the Bucs kept the ball for 27:42 and went 4 of 13 on third down.

Game one in the books, right?

Game two… the Sunshine State in week 17 and the Bucs got revenge in the second meeting to close out the regular season, winning 31-24 at Raymond James Stadium. Tampa Bay trailed 14-13 at the half, then outscored the Saints 18-10 in the final 30 minutes of play, with the game winner coming in the final second of the period when Winston and WR Chris Goodwin connected on a 39-yard TD pass with 9 seconds left. Tampa Bay then went for 2 and was successful in that try, then held off a late Saints’ rally to seal the win. Winston threw for 363 yards, while Brees threw for 245 yards (each man threw a TDs and had a pair of sacks, with winston throwing three interceptions). Tampa Bay outrushed New Orleans 110-92 and both teams did reasonably well on third down tries (New Orleans was 6 of 12 and Tampa Bay was 13 of 18); the Bucs were 1 of 1 on fourth down (New Orleans failed in their only fourth down try) and Tampa Bay ruled the clock, keeping the ball for 31:33, while the Saints held the pigskin for 28:27.

In the week nine contest in the Big Easy, the Saints easily covered the 7-point spread, winning by 20 but both teams missed the 52 over/under, scoring only 40 points. As for the season finale? The oddsmakers liked the Saints, this time as 7 point favorires in the Sunshine State. The Bucs covered the 7 with the win at home and this time around, both clubs covered the spread of 50 1/2, tallying 55 points. New Orleans is favored by 9 1/2 is 49 1/2. The 49 1/2 makes sense. The 9 1/2 is a bit steep. Tampa Bay is not that bad, even without Winston under center. They’ll give the Saints problems in the Big Easy but New Orleans prevails at home in the opener.

Jacksonville (10-6) at New York Giants (3-13), 1 p.m. on FOX and DirecTV 712. A pair of teams that went in opposite directions meet in upstate New Jersey as Blake Bortles and Jacksonville makes the 938-mile trip up I-95 to face off against Eli Manning and the New York Giants at Met Life Stadium.

Jacksonville found themselves being one play away from going to Super Bowl 52, falling to Tom Brady and the New England Patriots 24-20 in the AFC Championship Game in Foxboro. Jacksonville led 14-10 at the half and took a 20-10 lead with them to start the final 15 minutes of play at Gillette Stadium before seeing that lead get away from them, as Brady and WR Danny Amendola hooked up on a pair of TD passes to take the lead for good.

Jacksonville, who ran for 101 yards (Leonard Forunette led all rushers with 76 yards and a TD) did hold the Patriot running game in check, holding New England to 46 in the contest that would decide the AFC representative for Super Bowl 52 but Brady burned the Jaguars for 290 yards and the two TD tosses (Bortles threw for 293 yards and a TD but was sacked three times). Jacksonville had one last chance to make history for themselves in their last chance with the ball but the drive stalled at NeW England’s 43-yard line. New England ran out the clock and earned themselves a trip to Minneapolis.

Third down tries in the AFC Championship game were nothing to make the fan bases of either team happy; Jacksonville was 6 of 15 (they were 0 of 1 on fourth down), New England was 3 of 12 (the Pats were 1 of 1 on fourth down) and Jacksonville actually ruled the clock, keeping the ball for 35:08 to NeW England’s 24:52.

For the Giants, it was a 2017 they would just as soon forget. No OBJ for most of the season, Mannning benched, Ben McAdoo was fired mid-season… chaos for Big Blue as they would wind up in the NFC East cellar, losing five of their last six games, eventually closing out the season with an 18-10 win over Washington at Met Life in week 17. Big Blue led 15-10 at the break, then shut out the Redskins in the second half to take the win at home. The Giants outrushed Washington 260-61, with Orleans Darkwa leading the way with 154 yards and a TD, while Manning threw for 132 yards and a TD (Washington’s Kirk Cousins threw for 158 yards with three sacks and three interceptions). The Giants were 4 of 16 on third down tries and held the ball for 31:53, while the Redskins were a somewhat dismal 1 of 16 on third down (they were 1 of 1 on fourth down) and held the ball for 28:07.

They’ve met six times and each team has three wins to their credit and each team won their last meeting in their home facility; Jacksonville came away 25-24 winners in 2014 in the Sunshine State, while the Giants were 24-20 winners in 2010 on the Jersey shore. Jacksonville’s favored by 3 and the over/under’s 42 1/2. The Jags are looking to repeat as AFC South champs, while the Giants are trying to get their ducks back in a row. Jacksonville wins in upstate New Jersey and covers the 3 on the road.

Kansas City (10-6) at Los Angeles Chargers (9-7), 4:05 p.m. on CBS and DirecTV 713. A pair of AFC West rivals meet on the Left Coast as the defending AFC West champs Chiefs take on the Los Angeles Chargers at Stub Hub Stadium.

Kansas City looks to bounce back from their 22-21 AFC Wild Card loss to Marcus Mariota and the Tennessee Titans at Arrowhead Stadium. The Chiefs took an early 14-0 lead, thanks to TDs from RB Kareem Hunt and TE Travis Kelce and took a 21-3 lead with them to the intermission before things fell apart for them. Mariota then started the scoring in the second half when he completed a 6-yard TD pass to… Marcus Mariota. From that point onward, the Titans would score the final 12 points of the game unchallenged. The Chiefs had one last drive and thought they had the game-winning TD with 2 minutes left in the contest when Chiefs LB Derrick Johnson picked up a Titans fumble and returned the ball 56 yards for a TD. Chiefs fans then had their hearts broken when the call was reversed and the Titans ran out the clock and took the win on the road.

Kansas City was outrushed 202-69 and Alex Smith threw for 264 yards with a pair of TDs but was sacked four times, while Mariota threw for 205 yards and a pair of TDs (including the one to himself). The Chiefs on third down tries were 4 of 11 (they were 0 of 1 on fourth down) and held on to the ball at frigid chilly Arrowhead for 27:32, while the Titans ruled the clock and kept the pigskin for 32:28, going 8 of 13 on third down conversions.

The Chargers almost made the playoffs in 2017 but saw their hopes of post-season play come to an end at home, as they were on the short end of a 30-10 loss to the Silver and Black in Tinseltown. After a scoreless first quarter, Oakland took a 20-10 lead with them to the intermission and were kept off the scoreboard in the second half. Marshawn Lynch ran for 101 yards, even though the Chargers outrushed Oakland 115-105 and Philip Rivers threw for 387 yards and three TDs, while Derek Carr threw for 243 yards with a TD, two sacks and an interception. The Chargers on third down went 7 of 13 (they were 0 of 1 on fourth down) and held the ball for 33:20, while the Raiders kepd the pigskin for 26:40, going 4 of 11 on third down conversions.

Including games played at Swope Field, Qualcomm Stadium in San Diego, Dallas (when the Chiefs were known as the Texans) and the Chargers were in Los Angeles before moving South, the Chiefs lead the series 60-54-1, have outscored the Bolts 2,520- 2,306 and have won the last eight contests in the series (the Chargers’ last win in the series came in 2013 in San Diego, when they needed overtime to take a 27-24 win), including sweeping last year’s series.

Game one… week three at Stub Hub Center in Carson, just outside Los Angeles. The Chiefs were 24-10 winners on the West Coast, taking a 17-10 lead to the intermission with them. The Chiefs then went on to score their final 7 points of the contest, as RB Kareem Hunt would score on a 69-yard run to ice the game away. Hunt led all rushers with 172 of the Chiefs’ 189 yards (the Chargers ran for 104), while Alex Smith threw for 155 yards and a pair of TDs with five sacks and Rivers threw for 237 yards, two sacks and three interceptions. Both clubs struggled on third down tries in the first meeting on the West Coast (the Chiefs were 4 of 12, 0 of 2 on fourth down; the Chargers were 5 of 13) and Kansas City ruled the clock, keeping the ball for 30:26 to Los Angeles’ 29:34.

Kansas City made it a clean sweep of the series in the second meeting in the Show-Me State in week 15, taking a 30-13 win at Arrowhead. Leading 10-6 at the break, Kansas City pulled away in the second half, outscoring the Bolts 20-7 to seal the win. Hunt was again the rushing star, running for 155 yards and a TD, while the Chiefs outrushed Los Angeles 174-98. Smith threw for 231 yards and a pair of TDs, while Rivers threw for 227 yards with a TD, a pair of sacks and three interceptions. The Chiefs were 6 of 14 on third down (1 of 1 on fourth down) and held the ball for 33:21, while the Chargers kept the pigskin for 26:39, going 4 of 11 and 1 of 2 on third and fourth downs.

In the week three contest on the West Coast, the Chiefs covered the 3-point spread, winning by 14 but both clubs missed the 46 over/under, tallying only 34 points. The Chiefs covered the 1-point spread in the week 15 contest at Arrowhead, winning by 17 but again, the teams failed to cover the over/under (it was 46) and tallied only 43 points. The powers that be in Vegas like the Chargers as a 3 1/2-point favorite and the over/under’s 48 1/2. The Chargers are hoping to end their drought against the Chiefs, while the defending AFC West champs look to make it nine in a row. The beat goes on for the Chiefs, who make it 10 in a row and covers the 3 1/2.

Washington (7-9) at Arizona (8-8), 4:25 p.m. on FOX and DirecTV 714. A pair of teams that barely missed the post-season party in 2017 meet in the desert as Arizona hosts the Washington Redskins at University of Phoenix Stadium.

Washington closed out the 2017 season, keeping themselves out of the NFC East cellar but dropping an 18-10 decision against the New York Giants in the Meadowlands. Washington trailed Big Blue led 15-10 at the break, then were shut out in the second half as the Giants took the win at home. Washington was outrushed by the Giants 260-61, with Giants RB Orleans Darkwa leading the way with 154 yards and a TD, while Manning threw for 132 yards and a TD (Washington’s Kirk Cousins threw for 158 yards with three sacks and three interceptions). The Giants were 4 of 16 on third down tries and held the ball for 31:53, while the Redskins were a somewhat dismal 1 of 16 on third down (they were 1 of 1 on fourth down) and held the ball for 28:07.

The Desert Angry Birds completely knocked Seattle out of the NFC post-season party as they rallied from a 24-23 deficit late in the final quarter to take a 26-24 win in the land of Grunge, Salmon and Starbucks. Arizona led 20-7 at the intermission before the Seahawks rallied later in the contest to take the lead with 10:24 left to play, thanks to a 29-yard TD pass from Russell Wilson to Doug Baldwin. Arizona would then get the last word and use a 10-play, 62-yard drive that used 4:50 of clock to take the lead back when K Pat Dawson connected on a 42-yard field goal with 2:21 left. Arizona then held off a late and furious Seattle rally and took home the win when Blair Walsh’s 48-yard field goal try sailed wide to the right. Arizona outrushed Seattle 116-101 and Drew Stanton threw for 145 yards and a TD, while Wilson threw for 221 yards and a pair of TDs (both to Baldwin). Arizona was 4 of 14 on third down tries and kept the ball for 32:16, while Seattle, (who held the pigskin for 27:44) was 1 of 12 on third down, 1 of 1 on fourth down.

Including contests that were played in Boston, when the Redskins were known as the Braves and the Cardinals called Chicago and St. Louis home before making their way West, the Redskins lead the series 75-46-2 and have outscored the Desert Angry Birds 2,730-2,300. They met last year in Landover and the ‘Skins survived a 20-15 scare at Fed Ex Field (Arizona’s last win in the series came in 2016 in the desert by a final of 31-23.

The week 15 contest at Fed Ex Field saw the Redskins take a 14-9 lead at the break, then saw the two teams trade field goals in the second half. Kirk Cousins threw for 196 yards and a pair of TDs for Washington, while Arizona’s Blaine Gabbert, who took over for Carson Palmer (injury), threw for 189 yards with five sacks and an interception. Arizona, 4 of 19 on third down and 2 of 3 on fourth down, did manage to outrush Washington 141-31 but turned the ball over twice in the loss (the Redskins were 1 of 9 on third down) and kept the ball for 36:16 to Washington’s 23:44.

Washington’s 5-point win allowed them to cover the 1 1/2-point spread but both clubs missed the 43 1/2 over/under, tallying 35 points. Vegas likes the Desert Angry Birds as a 1-point favorite in Glendale and the over/under is 43 1/2. Both teams are lookng to improve from the 2017 campaign and both could do that. Hail To The Redskins! Washington covers the 1 in the desert and wins on the road.

Dallas (9-7) at Carolina (11-5), 4:25 p.m. on FOX and DirecTV 715. Dak Prescott vs. Cam Newton. The future of NFL QBs meet in the Tar Heel State as Carolina hosts Dallas in a late Sunday afternoon contest in Charlotte.

Dallas temporarily put a dent in Philadelphia’s march to Super Bowl 52 as they closed out the 2017 campaign, taking a 6-0 win over the Eagles in the City of Brotherly Love. The two teams went scoreless through the first 45 minutes of play in the season finale and Dallas picked up the lone score in the contest when TE Brice Butler and Prescott connected on a 20-yard toss with 12:19 left in regulation. Dallas outrushed Philadelphia 129-70, with Ezekiel Elliott rushing for 103 yards and Prescott throwing for 179. Dallas, who forced a pair of Philadelphia turnovers, went 5 of 15 on third down tries (0 of 1 on fourth down) and held on to the ball for 30:05, while the Eagles were 2 of 11 and 0 of 2 on third and fourth downs, keeping the ball for 29:55.

As for Carolina, they came close to taking down New Orleans in the NFC Wild Card game but fell to the Saints 31-26 in the Big Easy. Trailing 21-9 at the half in the Superdome, Newton and the Panthers managed outscore Drew Brees and the Saints in the second half by a 17-10 margin and pulled themselves to within five with 4:09 left when Newton and WR Christian McCaffrey connected on a 56-yard TD toss. After the Panthers picked up a New Orleans fumble later in the quarter, Carolina got the ball back with 1:51 left to play and got as far as New Orleans’ 34-yard line before Newton was sacked for a 17-yard loss on fourth down, ending the drive and Carolina’s hopes to advance. Carolina somehow managed to outrush New Orleans 107-41 and Newton threw for 349 yards with TDs to McCafferey and Greg Olsen (Newton was sacked four times), while Brees threw for 376 yards and a pair of TDs. Carolina was 8 of 17 and 1 of 2 on third and fourth downs in the Big Easy and actually ruled the clock, keeping the ball for 33:49, while the Saints kept the pigskin for 26:11, going 2 of 8 on third down and 1 of 2 on fourth down.

Dallas leads the series 9-2 and the Cowboys have outscored Carolina 227-190. The Panthers won the last meeting, with Carolina taking a 33-14 win on Thanksgiving Day in 2015, while Dallas’ last win in the series came in Charlotte by a final of 19-14 in 2012. Carolina’s favored by 3 and the over/under’s 42. Carolina’s trying to get back to being on top of the NFC South mountain, while the Cowboys look to return to prominence in the NFC East. The Cowboys will make things closer than 3 but Carolina’s finer in Charlotte and takes the win.

Seattle (9-7) at Denver (5-11), 4:25 p.m. on FOX and DirecTV 716. A pair of western teams meet in the Rocky Mountains as Seattle and Denver open the 2018 season in the Mile High City.

Seattle found themselves out of the NFC post-season party as they let a 24-23 lead get away from them as Arizona rallied to come away 26-24 winners in the land of Grunge, Salmon and Starbucks. Trailing 20-7 at the intermission, Seattle rallied later in the contest to take the lead with 10:24 left to play, thanks to a 29-yard TD pass from Russell Wilson to Doug Baldwin. Arizona would then get the last word and use a 10-play, 62-yard drive that used 4:50 of clock to take the lead back when K Pat Dawson connected on a 42-yard field goal with 2:21 left. Arizona then held off a late and furious Seattle rally and took home the win when Blair Walsh’s 48-yard field goal try sailed wide to the right. Arizona outrushed Seattle 116-101 and Drew Stanton threw for 145 yards and a TD, while Wilson threw for 221 yards and a pair of TDs (both to Baldwin). Arizona was 4 of 14 on third down tries and kept the ball for 32:16, while Seattle, (who held the pigskin for 27:44) was 1 of 12 on third down, 1 of 1 on fourth down.

Denver’s dismal 2017 season came to an end in the Mile High City as they would fall to AFC West rival Kansas City 27-24 in the final seconds at Sports Authority Field at Mile High (now Broncos Stadium at Mile High). Denver trailed 14-10 at the half, then saw the Chiefs take a 24-10 lead into the final 15 minutes of action. The Broncos would eventually pull even with 2:53 left in regulation when WR Demaryius Thomas and QB Paxton Lynch connected on a 6-yard TD strike. The tie would last all of the 2:53 when the Chiefs would use an 11-play, 67-yard drive to break the hearts of the Denver fans that were in attendance as Harrison Butker connected on a 30-yard field goal as time expired.

Each team rushed for 110 yards in the season finale and Patrick Mahomes II, making his first NFL start, (taking over for Alex Smith) threw for 284 yards, while Lynch threw for 254 yards and a pair of TDs in the Rocky Mountains. The Chiefs on third down tries were 4 of 11 (they were 1 of 1 on fourth down) and held on to the ball for 29:03, including the final 2:55), while the Broncos were 5 of 12 on third down (1 of 2 on fourth down) and held the ball for 30:57.

Denver holds a 34-19 lead in the series and the Broncos have outscored Seattle 1,242-1,037. Seattle needed overtime in the land of Grunge, Salmon and Starbucks, taking a 26-20 win in 2014 in the last meeting, while Denver’s last win over Seattle came in 2010 in the Mile High City by a final of 31-14. Vegas likes Denver as 3-point favorites and the over/under’s 42 1/2. This one may well be worth your time to watch and that could be good for the ratings. Seattle recovers and takes the win, although Denver will make things closer than 3 points.

Chicago (5-11) at Green Bay (7-9), 8:20 p.m. on NBC. A Lake Michigan rivalry older than football itself meets in the land of cheese, beer and Bratwurst as Chicago travels to the not-quite-frozen tundra of Lambeau Field for a Sunday night contest with the Green Bay Packers.

Da Bears trailed Minnesota 16-7 at US Bank Stadium in the season finale and fell to the Vikings 23-10. Held to a season-low 30 yards rushing, Chicago saw Minnesota run amok for 147 yards (LeMarco Murray led everyone with 111 yards and a pair of TD) and Case Keenum threw for 189 yards and a TD to WR Stefon Diggs, while Mitch Trubisky threw for 178 yards in the loss. Da Bears were a somewhat dismal 1 of 12 on third down, 0 of 2 on fourth down in the Land of 10,000 Lakes, keeping the ball for 24:05, while the Purple Gang went 5 of 13 on third down, holding the ball for 35:55.

The Packers are also coming off a season-finale loss, falling 35-11 at Detroit to close out a season Packer fans would rather forget. The Packers trailed Matthew Stafford and the Lions 20-3 at the intermission in the Motor City and could never really get on track at Ford Field. Although Green Bay outrushed Detroit 103-51, Stafford burned the Packers for 323 yards and three TDs, while Brett Hundley threw for 172 yards but was sacked four times and picked off twice. Detroit, who took advantage of four Packer turnovers, went 4 of 12 on third down, keeping the ball for 28:13, while the Packers ruled the clock and kept the pigskin for 31:47, going 4 of 14 and 1 of 2 on third and fourth down conversions.

The two NFC North rivals meet for the 195th time and the Packers lead the series 95-93-6 (including contests that were played when Da Bears were known as the Staleys), have outscored the Monsters of the Midway 3,358-3,314 and have won five of the last six meetings, including sweeping the series last year (Chicago’s last win came in 2015 when they shocked the Packers at Lambeau on Thanksgiving night 2015 by a final of 17-13).

Meeting number one… Lambeau in week four. The Packers used four Rodgers TDs tosses (two of them to Jordy Nelson) in the land of Cheese, beer and Bratwurst to come out on top 35-14. Leading 21-7 at the intermission, Green Bay held Chicago in check in the final 30 minutes of play, outscoring Da Bears 14-7. Although they outrushed Green Bay 103-91, Chicago could never really get on track in the contest, as Matt Glennon threw for 218 yards with a TD and a pair of interceptions. As for Rodgers, he threw for 179 yards and the four TDs to take the win in front of the home crowd. Green Bay was 7 of 14 on third down tries (they were 1 of 1 on fourth down) and held on to the ball for 28:09, while Da Bears ruled the clock and held the ball for 31:51, going 5 of 12 and 2 of 2 on third and fourth downs.

Meeting number two… the Windy City in week 10. While the contest was closer than the first meeting, the Packers managed to leave Chicago in check with a 23-16 NFC North win. Green Bay led 10-6 at the half at Soldier Field, then the Rodgers-less Packers outscored Chicago in the final 30 minutes of action 13-10 to take the win. This time, Green Bay outrushed Chicago 160-55 and while Brent Hundley was no Aaron Rodgers (shoulder), he did manage to throw for 212 yards with a TD despite being sacked three times. Hundley’s counterpart Mitch Trubisky didn’t fare as well, throwing for 297 yards and a TD with five sacks.

Third down tries in the week 10 contest? Not a lot to write home about. Green Bay was 7 of 16, Chicago was 4 of 14 (the Packers were 1 of 1 on fourth down, while Da Bears were 0 for 1). Green Bay did manage to rule the clock in the second contest, keeping the ball for 33:53 to Chicago’s 26:07.

In the week four contest that was played on a Thursday night at Lambeau, Green Bay’s 21-point win allowed them to cover the 7-point spread and both clubs covered the 45 1/2 over/under, scoring 49 points. The second meeting, a week 10 affair in the Windy City, saw Chicago as a 5 1/2-point favorite (Green Bay covered that, winning by 7) and both clubs covered the 37 1/2 over/under with 39 points. Green Bay’s favored by 7 in the land of beer, cheese and Bratwurst and the over/under is 47 1/2. While the Bears were somewhat dismal last year, they’re not 7 1/2 bad and they could cause problems for the Packers at Lambeau… but Green Bay prevails at home and takes the win.

New York Jets (5-11) at Detroit (7-9), 7:10 p.m. Monday on ESPN. The first of two Monday night contests gets underway in the Motor City as the Jets travel to Detroit for a showdown with the Detroit Lions.

GangGreen was manhandled by Tom Brady (190 yards, two TDs) and the New England Patriots 26-6 in Foxboro. The J-E-T-S! JETS! JETS! JETS! trailed 21-3 at the break and could never get on track in the season finale between the two AFC East rivals, finding themselves held to 40 yards rushing, as New England tallied 147 on the ground and Jets QB Bryce Petty threw for 232 yards against the Pats but was sacked four times. Third down tries in Foxboro? The J-E-T-S! JETS! JETS! JETS! were a dismal 0 of 12 (they were 1 of 1 on fourth down) and GangGreen held the ball for 25:11, while the Pats were 4 of 15 and 1 of 1 on third and fourth downs, keeping the ball for 34:49.

Detroit took care of Green Bay 35-11 to close out the 2017 season at Ford Field. Stafford and the Lions led 20-3 at the intermission in the Motor City and were never challenged by their NFC North rivals, even though the Packers outrushed them 103-51. Stafford burned the Packers for 323 yards and three TDs, while Brett Hundley threw for 172 yards but was sacked four times and picked off twice. Detroit, who took advantage of four Packer turnovers, went 4 of 12 on third down, keeping the ball for 28:13, while the Packers ruled the clock and kept the pigskin for 31:47, going 4 of 14 and 1 of 2 on third and fourth down conversions.

While the Lions lead series 7-6 (which includes games that were played at Shea Stadium, Tiger Stadium and the Pontiac Silverdome), GangGreen has outscored the Lions 262-258. Each team won their last meeting in the other team’s facility; GangGreen needed overtime in 2010 to take a 23-20 win in Detroit, while the Lions were 24-17 winners in the Meadowlands in 2014. On Monday nights, GangGreen is 21-31  with their last win coming in 2015 (they played two MNF games in 2016 and lost both), while the Lions are 16-17-1, taking wins in their two primetime meetings last season). The Lions are favored by 6 1/2 and the over/under is 45. Both clubs are actually better than their 2017 records and both want to get back to the post-season. Lions roar at home in the Motor City and cover the 6 1/2.

Los Angeles Rams (11-5) at Oakland (6-10), 10:20 p.m. Monday on ESPN. Week one concludes on the Eastern side of San Francisco bay as the Los Angeles Rams make the 373-mile trip up I-5 for a Golden State matchup with the Oakland Raiders.

Los Angeles was taken to task by Atlanta in the NFC Wild Card Game at the Coliseum 26-13. The Rams made things close for Matt Ryan and the Falcons and trailed 13-10 at the intermission before Atlanta pulled away in the second half, outscoring the Rams 13-3 in the final 30 minutes of action. Atlanta outrushed the Rams 124-115. with Todd Gurley III leading the way with 101 yards on the evening. Jarred Goff threw for 259 yards with three sacks, while Ryan threw for 218 yards (both threw for a TD and both were sacked three times). Atlanta was 5 of 13 on third down (1 of 1 on fourth down) and held on to the ball for 37:35, while the Rams were 22:25 in time of possession, going 5 of 14 and 1 of 3 on third and fourth down tries.

While the Raiders did not make the post-season party, they made sure that their rivals from Los Angeles didn’t get their RSVP, putting the Chargers on the outside looking in and taking a 30-10 win in Tinseltown. After a scoreless first quarter, Oakland took a 20-10 lead with them to the intermission and were kept off the scoreboard in the second half. Marshawn Lynch ran for 101 yards, even though the Chargers outrushed Oakland 115-105 and Philip Rivers threw for 387 yards and three TDs, while Derek Carr threw for 243 yards with a TD, two sacks and an interception. The Chargers on third down went 7 of 13 (they were 0 of 1 on fourth down) and held the ball for 33:20, while the Raiders kepd the pigskin for 26:40, going 4 of 11 on third down conversions.

Including contests that took place when both teams were in Los Angeles and the Rams later moved to St. Louis, the Silver and Black lead the series 8-5; however… the Rams have outscored Oakland 278-257 in those 13 meetings. The Rams took Oakland to task in their last meeting, which took place in St. Louis, coming away 52-0 winners in 2014, while the Raiders took a 16-14 win in 2010.

The Rams are favored by 4 in Oakland and the over/under is 48 1/2. As far as Monday night is concerned… the Rams are 26-32 and lost their last meeting under the lights in 2016 (their last win came in 2004 when they were in St. Louis), while the Raiders are 38-28-1 in prime time, losing their only meeting last year (their last win was in 2016). This may be one of the better MNF games to watch this season and the two teams are separated by a mere 373 miles. In the end, one of these California teams will take the win. The Rams may not cover the 4 but they win in Oakland to close out week one.

The who your team is playing and where was announced last January, while most of the country was shovleing snow and shivering. You wondered when your team would play and even wondered if they were going to be on Thursday, Sunday or Monday night.

Football fans, your wait is over.

Your patience has been rewarded, Grasshopper.

The National Football League announced the 2018 regular season schedule Thursday night and fans could not be happier.

The season begins with the NFL’s annual primetime kickoff game, as the defending Super Bowl champion Philadelphia
Eagles host the Atlanta Falcons at Lincoln Financial Field on September 6 in an NFC Dvivisional rematch at 8:20 p.m. on NBC.

Week 1 is a FOX national weekend with key games on Sunday, September 9 featuring Dak Prescott and the Dallas Cowboys traveling to Charlotte to face off against Cam Newton and the Carolina Panthers at 4:25 p.m. and Seattle visiting Denver at 4:25 p.m. Week 1 matchups on CBS include the Houston Texans at the New England Patriots at 1 p.m. and the Los Angeles Chargers hosting Kansas City at 4:05 p.m. Week 2 represents the first CBS national weekend with doubleheader games showcasing Oakland traveling to the Mile High City for a matchup with Denver at 4:25 p.m. and the Patriots visiting the Jacksonville Jaguars at 4:25 p.m.

NBC’s Sunday Night Football gets underway on September 9 when the Green Bay Packers host the Chicago Bears at 8:20
p.m. at Lambeau Field in the 195th regular-season meeting between the storied franchises. Kickoff Weekend concludes on Monday, September 10 with an ESPN Monday Night Football doubleheader. Detroit hosts the New York Jets at 7:10 p.m. in the Motor City in the first game followed by the Los Angeles Rams visiting Oakland in the nightcap at 10:20 p.m.

ESPN will televise one game each Monday night in Weeks 2-16. There will be no Monday night game on the final regular-season
weekend (Week 17) to provide more flexibility for the scheduling of the opening weekend of the NFL playoffs. And fans will get to go to bed at a decent hour as prime time kickoffs will now be earlier – Thursday kickoffs that were at 8:25 p.m. will now be at 8:20 p.m., Sunday night games kick off at 8:20 instead of 8:30 and Monday games will now have an 8:15 kickoff, up 15 minutes from last year’s 8:30 p.m. start. Plus, as an added feature, all 32 teams are scheduled for at least one prime time game either on Thursday, Sunday or Monday night games (fans in Cleveland can rejoice).

FOX will kick off their Thursday Night Football package in Week 4 with a showdown of NFC playoff teams, as
Minnesota visits the Los Angeles Rams at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum at 8:20 p.m. on FOX/NFLN. FOX will
broadcast 11 Thursday Night Football games between Weeks 4-15 (excluding Thanksgiving night), with those games also
being simulcast via NFL Network and distributed in Spanish on FOX Deportes. In addition, NFL Network will exclusively
televise seven games this season, with FOX producing the full slate of 18 games.

A select number of games will be “cross-flexed,” moving between CBS and FOX to bring potentially under-distributed
games to wider audiences. Some of those contests were announced today and other “cross-flexed” games will be decided
during the season.

The regular season will conclude with Week 17 on Sunday, December 30. For the ninth consecutive year, all 16 games
scheduled for Week 17 are division contests, enhancing the potential for more games with playoff ramifications.

Other highlights of the schedule include:

Nine games in the 2018 regular season will feature a rematch from the 2017 postseason. In Week 2, Jacksonville hosts Tom Brady and New England at EverBank Field in a rematch of last season’s AFC Championship Game at 4:25 p.m. on CBS and the Vikings travel to the City of Brotherly Love in a week five meeting, a rematch of the 2017 NFC Championship Game at 4:25 p.m. on FOX.

Fans of Thanksgiving Day football weren’t left out as Turkey Day features a trio of divisional matchups on Thursday, November 22. 2018 marks only the second time since 1970 (2014) that the holiday has featured exclusively divisional matchups. The first game will send the Bears to Detroit to face the Lions at 12:30 p.m. on CBS, Dallas hosts Washington in an NFC East matchup in Arlington at 4:30 p.m. on FOX and the Turkey Day festivities conclude with an NFC South showdown as Atlanta and Matt Ryan travels to New Orleans to face Drew Brees and the Saints in the Big Easy on NBC at 8:20 p.m.

As for games outside of the United States, the NFL’s international slate includes three games in London – occurring in three consecutive weeks (Week 6-8) – and one in Mexico City. English Premier League soccer club Tottenham Hotspur’s new stadium is the site of the first game of the 2018 London Series schedule in Week 6 on Sunday, October 14, as Oakland hosts Seattle at 1 p.m. on FOX. The following week, action returns to Wembley Stadium as the Los Angeles Chargers host Tennessee on Sunday, October 21 at 9:30 a.m. on CBS and the series on the other side of the pond concludes in Week 8 with Jacksonville hosting Philadelphia at Wembley on Sunday, October 28 at 9:30 a.m. on NFL Network and for the third consecutive season, the NFL will return to Mexico City’s Estadio Azteca. On Monday, November 19 (the Monday before Thanksgiving), the Los Angeles Rams host Kansas City in the historic venue on Monday Night Football at 8:15 p.m. on ESPN.

The NFL’s 32 teams will each play 16 games over 17 weeks. Byes will begin in Week 4 and end in Week 12.

“Flexible scheduling” will be used in Weeks 11-17. Additionally, in Weeks 5-10, flexible scheduling may be used in no
more than two weeks. In Weeks 5-16, the schedule lists the games tentatively set for Sunday Night Football on NBC. Only
Sunday afternoon games are eligible to be moved to Sunday night, in which case the tentatively scheduled Sunday night
game would be moved to an afternoon start time. A flexible scheduling move would be announced at least 12 days before
the game.

Flexibility for Saturday games in Weeks 15 and 16 is also part of the 2018 schedule. In Week 15, there will be two games
played on Saturday on NFL Network: Houston at the New York Jets and Cleveland at Denver, with the game times of 4:30
PM ET and 8:20 PM ET to be determined. In Week 16, two of four possible matchups will be scheduled for Saturday:
Baltimore at Los Angeles Chargers, Jacksonville at Miami, the New York Giants at Indianapolis or Washington at
Tennessee. Start times and Saturday games for Week 15 and 16 will be announced no later than following Week 8, with
the non-Saturday games to be played on Sunday.

For Week 17, the Sunday night game will be announced no later than six days prior to December 30. The schedule does
not list a Sunday night game in Week 17 but an afternoon game with playoff implications will be moved to that time slot.

Flexible scheduling ensures quality matchups in all Sunday time slots in those weeks and gives “surprise” teams a chance
to play their way into primetime. Flexible scheduling will not be applied to games airing on Thursday or Monday nights.

The playoffs will include four division winners and two wild cards from each conference. The playoffs begin with Wild Card
Weekend on Saturday and Sunday, January 5-6. The two division winners with the best records in each conference will
earn first-round byes.

Wild Card Weekend winners join the top two division champions in each conference in the Divisional Playoffs on Saturday
and Sunday, January 12-13. The AFC and NFC Championship Games will be played on Sunday, January 20. The winners meet two weeks later on Sunday, February 3 in Super Bowl LIII at Atlanta’s Mercedes-Benz Stadium (CBS).

The NFL is the only sports league that presents all regular-season and postseason games on free, over-the-air television
in local markets. All postseason games are televised nationally. Westwood One will broadcast on radio all NFL primetime games, the three Thanksgiving Day games and the entire NFL playoffs.

For ticket information, fans may visit http://www.nfl.com/tickets.

Note – Sunday night games in Weeks 5-16 subject to change; Week 17 game TBD.

2018 National Football League Regular Season Schedule (All times Eastern)

Week 1
Thursday, September 6
ATLANTA at Philadelphia, 8:20 p.m. on NBC

Sunday, September 9
Buffalo at Baltimore, 1 p.m. on CBS
Pittsburgh at Cleveland, 1 p.m. on CBS
Cincinnati at Indianapolis, 1 p.m. on CBS
Tennessee at Miami, 1 p.m. on FOX
San Francisco at Minnesota, 1 p.m. on FOX
Houston at New England, 1 p.m. on CBS
Tampa Bay at New Orleans, 1 p.m. on FOX
Jacksonville at New York Giants, 1 p.m. on FOX
Kansas City at Los Angeles Chargers, 4:05 p.m. on CBS
Washington at Arizona, 4:25 p.m. on FOX
Dallas at Carolina, 4:25 p,m. on FOX
Seattle at Denver, 4:25 p.m. on FOX
Chicago at Green Bay, 8:20 p.m. on NBC

Monday, September 10
New York Jets at Detroit, 7:10 p.m. on ESPN
Los Angeles Rams at Oakland, 10:20 p.m. on ESPN

Week 2

Thursday, September 13
Baltimore at Cincinnati, 8:20 p.m. on NFL Network

Sunday, September 16
Carolina at ATLANTA, 1 p.m. on FOX
Los Angeles Chargers at Buffalo, 1 p.m. on CBS
Minnesota at Green Bay, 1 p.m. on FOX
Cleveland at New Orleans, 1 p..m. on FOX
Miami at New York Jets, 1 p.m. on CBS
Kansas City at Pittsburgh, 1 p.m. on CBS
Philadelphia at Tampa Bay, 1 p.m. on FOX
Houston at Tennessee, 1 p.m. on CBS
Indianapolis at Washington, 1 p.m. on CBS
Arizonat at Los Angeles Rams, 4:05 p.m. on FOX
Detroit at San Francisco, 4:05 p.m. on FOX
Oakland at Denver, 4:25 p.m. on CBS
New England at Jacksonville, 4:25 p.m. on CBS
New York Giants at Dallas, 8:20 p.m. on NBC

Monday, September 17
Seattle at Chicago, 8:15 p.m. on ESPN

Week 3

Thursday, September 20
New York Jets at Cleveland, 8:20 p.m. on NFL Network

Sunday, September 23
New Orleans at ATLANTA, 1 p.m. on FOX
Denver at Baltimore, 1 p.m. on CBS
Cincinnati at Carolina, 1 p.m. on CBS
New York Giants at Houston, 1 p.m. on FOX
Tennessee at Jacksonville, 1 p.m. on CBS
San Francisco at Kansas City, 1 p.m. on FOX
Oakland at Miami, 1 p.m. on CBS
Buffalo at Minnesota, 1 p.m. on CBS
Indianapolis at Philadelphia, 1 p.m. on FOX
Green Bay at Washington, 1 p.m. on FOX
Los Angeles Chargers at Los Angeles Rams, 4:05 p.m. on CBS
Chicago at Arizona, 4:25 p.m. on FOX
Dallas at Seattle, 4:25 p.m. on FOX
New England at Detroit, 8:20 p.m. on NBC

Monday, September 24
Pittsburgh at Tampa Bay, 8:15 p.m. on ESPN

Week 4

Thursday, September 27
Minnesota at Los Angeles Rams, 8:20 p.m. on FOX and NFL Network

Sunday, September 30
Cincinnati at ATLANTA, 1 p.m. on CBS
Tampa Bay at Chicago, 1 p.m. on FOX
Detroit at Dallas, 1 p.m. on FOX
Buffalo at Green Bay, 1 p.m. on CBS
Houston at Indianapolis, 1 p.m. on CBS
New York Jets at Jacksonville, 1 p.m. on FOX
Miami at New Engalnd, 1 p.m. on CBS
Philadelphia at Tennessee, 1 p.m. on FOX
Seattle at Arizona, 4:05 p.m. on FOX
Cleveland at Oakland, 4:05 p.m. on FOX
San Francisco at Los Angeles Chargers, 4:25 p.m. on CBS
New Orleans at New York Giants, 4:25 p.m. on CBS
Baltimore at Pittsburgh, 8:20 p.m. on NBC

Monday, October 1
Kansas City at Denver, 8:15 p.m. on ESPN

Week 5 (Byes: Chicago and Tampa Bay)

Thursday, October 4, 2018
Indianapolis at New England, 8:20 p.m. on FOX and NFL Network

Sunday, October 7, 2018
ATLANTA at Pittsubrgh, 1 p.m. on FOX
Tennessee at Buffalo, 1 p.m. on CBS
New York Giants at Carolina, 1 p.m on FOX
Miami at Cincinnati, 1 p.m. on CBS
Baltimore at Cleveland, 1 p.m. on CBS
Green Bay at Detroit, 1 p.m. on FOX
Jacksonville at Kansas City, 1 p.m. on CBS
Denver at New York Jets, 1 p.m. on CBS
Oakland at Los Angeles Chargers, 4:05 p.m. on CBS
Minnesota at Philadelphia, 4:25 p.m. on FOX
Arizona at San Francisco, 4:25 p.m. on FOX
Los Angeles Rams at Seattle, 4:25 p.m. on FOX
Dallas at Houston, 8:20 p.m. on NBC*

Monday, October 8, 2018
Washington at New Orleans, 8:15 p.m. on ESPN

Week 6 (Byes: Detroit and New Orleans)

Thursday, October 11, 2018
Philadelphia at New York Giants, 8:20 p.m. on FOX and NFL Networ

Sunday, October 14, 2018
Tampa Bay at ATLANTA, 1 p.m. on FOX
Pittsburgh at Cincinnati, 1 p.m. on CBS
Los Angeles Chargers at Cleveland, 1 p.m. on CBS
Buffalo at Houston, 1 p.m. on CBS
Chicago at Miami, 1 p.m. on FOX
Arizona at Minnesota, 1 p.m. on FOX
Indianapolis at New York Jets, 1 p.m. on CBS
Seattle at Oakland, 1 p.m. on FOX (London)
Carolina at Washington, 1 p.m. on FOX
Los Angeles Rams at Denver, 4:05 p.m. on FOX
Jacksonville at Dallas, 4:25 p.m. on CBS
Baltimore at Tennessee, 4:25 p.m. on CBS
Kansas City at New England, 8:20 p.m. on NBC*

Monday, October 15, 2018
San Francisco at Green Bay, 8:15 p.m. on ESPN

Week 7 (Byes: Green Bay, Oakland, Pittsburgh and Seattle)

Thursday, October 18
Denver at Arizona, 8:20 p.m. on FOX and NFL Network

Sunday, October 21
Tennessee at Los Angeles Chargers, 9:30 a.m. on CBS (London)
New England at Chicago, 1 p.m. on CBS
Buffalo at Indianapolis, 1 p.m. on CBS
Houston at Jacksonville, 1 p.m. on CBS
Cincinnati at Kansas City, 1 p.m. on CBS
Detroit at Miami, 1 p.m. on FOX
Minnesota at New York Jets, 1 p.m. on FOX
Carolina at Philadelphia, 1 p.m. on FOX
Cleveland at Tampa Bay, 1 p.m. on FOX
New Orleans at Baltimore, 4:05 p.m. on FOX
Dallas at Washington, 4:25 p.m. on CBS
Los Angeles Rams at San Francisco, 8:20 p.m, on NBC*

Monday, October 22
New York Giants at ATLANTA, 8:15 p.m. on ESPN

Week 8 (Byes: ATLANTA, Dallas, Los Angeles Chargers and Tennessee)

Thursday, October 25
Miami at Houston, 8:20 p.m. on FOX and NFL Network

Sunday, October 28
Philadelphia at Jacksonville, 1 p.m. on NFL Network (London)
Baltimore at Carolina, 1 p.m. on CBS
New York Jets at Chicago, 1 p.m. on CBS
Tampa Bay at Cincinnati, 1 p.m. on FOX
Seattle at Detroit, 1 p.m. on FOX
Denver at Kansas City, 1 p.m. on CBS
Washington at New York Giants, 1 p.m. on FOX
Cleveland at Pittsburgh, 1 p.m. on CBS
Indianapolis at Oakland, 4:05 p.m. on CBS
San Francisco at Arizona, 4:25 p.m. on FOX
Green Bay at Los Angeles Rams, 4:25 p.m. on FOX
New Orleans at Minnesota, 8:20 p.m. on NBC*

Monday, October 29
New England at Buffalo, 8:15 p.m. on ESPN

Week 9 (Byes: Arizona, Cincinnati, Indianapolis, Jacksonville, New York Giants and Philadelphia)

Thursday, November 1
Oakland at San Francisco, 8:20 p.m. on FOX and NFL Network

Sunday, November 4
ATLANTA at Washington, 1 p.m. on FOX
Pittsburgh at Baltimore, 1 p.m. on CBS
Chicago at Buffalo, 1 p.m. on FOX
Tampa Bay at Carolina, 1 p.m. on FOX
Kansas City at Cleveland, 1 p.m. on CBS
New York Jets at Miami, 1 p.m. on CBS
Detroit at Minnesota, 1 p.m. on FOX
Houston at Denver, 4:05 p.m. on CBS
Los Angeles Chargers at Seattle, 4:05 p.m. on CBS
Los Angeles Rams at New Orleans, 4:25 p.m. on FOX
Green Bay at New England, 8:20 p.m. on NBC*

Monday, November 5
Tennessee at Dallas, 8:15 p.m. on ESPN

Week 10 (Byes: Baltimore, Denver, Houston and Minnesota)

Thursday, November 8
Carolina at Pittsburgh, 8:20 p.m. on FOX and NFL Network

Sunday, November 11
ATLANTA at Cleveland, 1 p.m. on FOX
Detroit at Chicago, 1 p.m. on FOX
New Orleans at Cincinnati, 1 p.m. on FOX
Miami at Green Bay, 1 p.m. on CBS
Jacksonville at Indianapolis, 1 p.m. on CBS
Arizona at Kansas City, 1 p.m. on FOX
Buffalo at New York Jets, 1 p.m. on CBS
Washington at Tampa Bay, 1 p.m. on FOX
New England at Tennessee, 1 p.m. on CBS
Los Angeles Chargers at Oakland, 4:05 p.m. on FOX
Seattle at Los Angeles Rams, 4:25 p.m. on CBS
Dallas at Philadelphia, 8:20 p.m. on NBC*

Monday, November 12
New York Giants at San Francisco, 8:15 p.m. on ESPN

Week 11 (Byes: Buffalo, Cleveland, Miami, New England, New York Jets and San Francisco)

Thursday, November 15
Green Bay at Seattle, 8:20 p.m. on FOX and NFL Network

Sunday, November 18
Dallas at ATLANTA, 1 p.m. on FOX
Cincinnati at Baltimore, 1 p.m. on CBS
Minnesota at Chicago, 1 p.m. on FOX
Carolina at Detroit, 1 p.m. on FOX
Tennessee at Indianapolis, 1 p.m. on CBS
Philadelphia at New Orleans, 1 p.m. on FOX
Tampa Bay at New York Giants, 1 p.m. on FOX
Houston at Washington, 1 p.m. on CBS
Oakland at Arizona, 4:05 p.m. on CBS
Denver at Los Angeles Chargers, 4:05 p.m. on CBS
Pittsburgh at Jacksonville, 8:20 p.m. on NBC*

Monday, November 19
Kansas City at Los Angeles Rams, 8:15 p.m. on ESPN (Mexico City)

Week 12 (Byes: Kansas City and Los Angeles Rams)

Thursday, November 22
ATLANTA at New Orleans, 8:20 p.m. on NBC
Chicago at Detroit, 12:30 p.m. on CBS
Washington at Dallas, 4:30 p.m. on FOX

Sunday, November 25
Oakland at Baltimore, 1 p.m. on CBS
Jacksonville at Buffalo, 1 p.m. on CBS
Seattle at Carolina, 1 p.m. on FOX
Cleveland at Cincinnati, 1 p.m. on CBS
Miami at Indianapolis, 1 p.m. on CBS
New England at New York Jets, 1 p.m. on CBS
New York Giants at Philadelphia, 1 p.m. on FOX
San Francisco at Tampa Bay, 1 p.m. on FOX
Arizona at Los Angeles Chargers, 4:05 p.m. on FOX
Pittsburgh at Denver, 4:25 p.m. on CBS
Green Bay at Minnesota, 8:20 p.m. on NBC*

Monday, November 26
Tennessee at Houston, 8:15 p.m. on ESPN

Week 13

Thursday, November 29
New Orleans at Dallas Cowboys, 8:20 p.m. on FOX and NFL Network

Sunday, December 2
Baltimore at ATLANTA, 1 p.m. on CBS
Denver at Cincinnati, 1 p.m. on CBS
Los Angeles Rams at Detroit, 1 p.m. on FOX
Arizona at Green Bay, 1 p.m. on FOX
Cleveland at Houston, 1 p.m. on CBS
Indianapolis at Jacksonville, 1 p.m. on CBS
Buffalo at Miami, 1 p.m. on CBS
Chicago at New York Giants, 1 p.m. on FOX
Los Angeles Chargers at Pittsburgh, 1 p.m. on CBS
Carolina at Tampa Bay, 1 p.m. on FOX
Kansas City at Oakland, 4:05 p.m. on CBS
New York Jets at Tennessee, 4:05 p.m. on CBS
Minnesota at New England Patriots4:25pFOX
San Francisco at Seattle, 8:20 p.m. on NBC*

Monday, December 3
Washington at Philadelphia, 8:15 p.m. on ESPN

Week 14

Thursday, December 6
Jacksonville at Tennessee, 8:20 p.m. on FOX and NFL Network

Sunday, December 9
ATLANTA at Green Bay, 1 p.m. on FOX
New York Jets at Buffalo, 1 p.m. on CBS
Los Angeles Rams at Chicago, 1 p.m. on FOX
Carolina at Cleveland, 1 p.m. on FOX
Indianapolis at Houston, 1 p.m. on CBS
Baltimore at Kansas City, 1 p.m. on CBS
New England at at Miami, 1 p.m. on CBS
New Orleans at Tampa Bay, 1 p.m. on FOX
New York Giants at Washington, 1 p.m. on FOX
Cincinnati at Los Angeles Chargers, 4:05 p.m. on CBS
Denver at San Francisco, 4:05 p.m. on CBS
Detroit at Arizona, 4:25 p.m. on FOX
Philadelphia at Dallas, 4:25 p.m. on FOX
Pittsburgh at Oakland, 8:20 p.m. on NBC*

Monday, December 10
Minnesota at Seattle, 8:15 p.m. on ESPN

Week 15

Thursday, December 13
Los Angeles Chargers at Kansas City, 8:20 p.m. on FOX and NFL Network

Saturday, December 15
Houston at New York Jets, 4:30 p,m or 8:20 p.m. on NFL Network
Cleveland at Denver, 4:30 p.m. or 8:20 p.m. on NFL Network

Sunday, December 16
Arizona at ATLANTA, 1 p.m. on FOX
Tampa Bay at Baltimore, 1 p.m. on FOX
Detroit at Buffalo, 1 p.m. on FOX
Green Bay at Chicago, 1 p.m. on FOX
Oakland at Cincinnati, 1 p.m. on CBS
Dallas at Indianapolis, 1 p.m. on FOX
Washington at Jacksonville, 1 p.m. on FOX
Miami at Minnesota, 1 p.m. on CBS
Tennessee at New York Giants, 1 p.m. on CBs
Seattle at San Francisco, 4:05 p.m. on FOX
New England at Pittsburgh, 4:25 p.m. on CBS
Philadelphia at Los Angeles Rams, 8:20 p.m. on NBC*

Monday, December 17
New Orleans at Carolina, 8:15 p.m. on ESPN

Week 16

Saturday, December 22
Game TBD, 4:30 p.m. on NFL Network
Game TBD, 8:20 p.m. on NFL Network
New York Giants at Indianapolis, Time and Network TBD
Baltimore at Los Angeles Chargers, Time and Network TBD
Jacksonville at Miami, Time and Network TBD
Washington at Tennessee, Time and Network TBD

Sunday, December 23
ATLANTA at Carolina, 1 p.m. on FOX
Cincinnati at Cleveland, 1 p.m. on CBS
Tampa Bay at Dallas, 1 p.m. on FOX
Minnesota at Detroit, 1 p.m. on FOX
Buffalo at New England, 1 p.m. on CBS
Green Bay at New York Jets, 1 p.m. on FOX
Houston at Philadelphia, 1 p.m. on CBS
Los Angeles Rams at Arizona, 4:05 p.m. on FOX
Chicago at San Francisco, 4:05 p.m. on FOx
Pittsburgh at New Orleans, 4:25 p.m. on CBS
Kansas City at Seattle, 8:20 p.m. on NBC*

Monday, December 24
Denver at Oakland, 8:15 p.m. on ESPN

Week 17

Sunday, December 30
ATLANTA at Tampa Bay, 1 p.m. on FOX
Cleveland at Baltimore, 1 p.m. on CBS
Miami at Buffalo, 1 p.m. on CBS
Detroit at Green Bay, 1 p.m. on FOX
Jacksonville at Houston, 1 p.m. on CBS
Oakland at Kansas City, 1 p.m. on CBS
Chicago at Minnesota, 1 p.m. on FOX
New York Jets at New England, 1 p.m. on CBS
Carolina at New Orleans, 1 p.m. on FOX
Dallas at New York Giants, 1 p.m. on FOX
Cincinnati at Pittsburgh, 1 p.m. on CBS
Indianapolis at Tennessee, 1 p.m. on CBS
Philadelphia at Washington, 1 p.m. on FOX
Los Angeles Chargers at Denver, 4:25 p.m. on CBS
San Francisco at Los Angeles Rams, 4:25 p.m. on FOX
Arizona at Seattle, 4:25 p.m. on FOX

Building off the tremendous success of the 2016 and 2017 games in Mexico, the NFL will return to Mexico City in 2018 when the Los Angeles Rams host the Kansas City Chiefs at Estadio Azteca, NFL Commissioner Rodger Goodell announced at his press conference in Minneapolis in advance of Super Bowl LII.

The date and time of the game will be determined in conjunction with the release of the NFL schedule this spring. The game in Mexico is the fourth international game confirmed for 2018, adding to the three previously announced games in London and a testament to the NFL’s commitment to growing the game beyond the borders of the United States.

In November, the NFL and Mexico’s Ministry of Tourism announced an agreement to play three NFL regular-season games from 2019 to 2021. The previous agreement covered games from 2016 to 2018.

“Over the past two seasons, we have seen the extraordinary passion that exists for NFL football in Mexico,” Goodell said. “We are excited for another memorable event at Estadio Azteca as the Los Angeles Rams and Kansas City Chiefs head to Mexico City in 2018.”

The Rams and Chiefs will both play their first regular-season game in Mexico next season. The Chiefs played a preseason game against the Dallas Cowboys in Monterrey, Mexico on August 5, 1996, earning a 32-6 win over the Dallas Cowboys.

“Southern California and Mexico share strong historic and cultural ties and this game will provide an opportunity to celebrate the special connection between these two regions,” said Rams Owner/Chairman E. Stanely Kroenke. “It is great to be participating in the NFL’s international games again and working with the league to grow the game abroad. Mexico has one of the largest NFL fan bases in the world and we are excited to bring Rams football to the millions of fans there.”

“We are thrilled to be a part of the NFL’s international initiatives once again and we are excited to face the Rams at historic Estadio Azteca this fall,” said Kansas C​ity Chiefs Chairman & CEO Clark Hunt. “The support for the NFL in Mexico has grown significantly since our initial trip in 1996. We look forward to returning to Mexico and connecting with a new generation of fans this season.”

Fans interested in receiving information about tickets for the game, which will go on sale this summer, should register their interest at http://www.nfl.com/mexico/registration. Season ticket members of the Los Angeles Rams and Kansas City Chiefs will receive information directly from the clubs once tickets are ready for sale.

————–

Aprovechando el tremendo éxito de los juegos 2016 y 2017 en México, la NFL regresará a Ciudad de México en 2018 cuando los Rams de Los Ángeles reciban a los Jefes de Kansas City en el Estadio Azteca, el comisionado de la NFL Rodger Goodell anunció en su conferencia de prensa en Minneapolis por adelantado del Super Bowl LII.

La fecha y hora del juego se determinarán junto con el lanzamiento del calendario de la NFL esta primavera. El juego en México es el cuarto juego internacional confirmado para 2018, que se suma a los tres juegos anunciados previamente en Londres y un testimonio del compromiso de la NFL para hacer crecer el juego más allá de las fronteras de los Estados Unidos.

En noviembre, la NFL y el Ministerio de Turismo de México anunciaron un acuerdo para jugar tres partidos de la temporada regular de la NFL entre 2019 y 2021. El acuerdo anterior cubría los juegos de 2016 a 2018.

“En las últimas dos temporadas, hemos visto la extraordinaria pasión que existe por el fútbol de la NFL en México”, dijo Goodell. “Estamos entusiasmados por otro evento memorable en el Estadio Azteca, ya que los Rams de Los Ángeles y los Jefes de Kansas City se dirigirán a la Ciudad de México en 2018”.

Los Rams y los Chiefs jugarán su primer partido de temporada regular en México la próxima temporada. Los Chiefs jugaron un partido de pretemporada contra los Dallas Cowboys en Monterrey, México el 5 de agosto de 1996, ganando 32-6 a los Dallas Cowboys.

“El sur de California y México comparten fuertes lazos históricos y culturales y este juego brindará la oportunidad de celebrar la conexión especial entre estas dos regiones”, dijo el propietario / presidente de los Rams, E. Stanely Kroenke. “Es genial participar de nuevo en los juegos internacionales de la NFL y trabajar con la liga para hacer crecer el juego en el extranjero. México tiene una de las mayores bases de fanáticos de la NFL en el mundo y estamos muy contentos de llevar el fútbol Rams a los millones de fanáticos allí “.

“Estamos encantados de ser parte de las iniciativas internacionales de la NFL una vez más y estamos entusiasmados de enfrentar a los Rams en el histórico Estadio Azteca este otoño”, dijo el presidente y gerente general de Kansas Ctyy Chiefs, Clark Hunt. “El apoyo a la NFL en México ha crecido significativamente desde nuestro viaje inicial en 1996. Esperamos volver a México y conectarnos con una nueva generación de fanáticos esta temporada”.

Los fanáticos interesados ​​en recibir información sobre boletos para el juego, que saldrá a la venta este verano, deben registrar su interés en http://www.nfl.com/mexico/registration. Los miembros de los boletos de temporada de Los Angeles Rams y Kansas City Chiefs recibirán información directamente de los clubes una vez que los boletos estén listos para la venta.

As part of the celebration of the NFL’s game in Mexico last November, the Ministry of Tourism and the National Football League announced an agreement to play three NFL regular-season games from 2019 to 2021, having achieved positive results in tourism and the presence of Mexico’s brand through the NFL’s previous games in Mexico.

The agreement will be formalized by both parties at a later date, at which time representatives of the parties will finalize the corresponding legal and administrative documents.  The current agreement covered games in 2016, 2017 and 2018.

The Ministry of Tourism highlighted the importance of high impact sporting events for the promotion of Mexico’s tourism both nationally and internationally.  This agreement is part of the strategies that are implemented within this sector to increase economic impact.

These events have provided economic benefits to Mexico City and the country as well, by supporting the tourism sector and offering our country a platform to be promoted internationally within the main markets that generate tourists.

The relationship with the League has served as a platform to significantly boost the tourism industry in Mexico, with fans taking advantage of the opportunity to expand their trips and explore the country.

——————————————-

Como parte de la celebración del juego de la NFL en México en noviembre pasado, el Ministerio de Turismo y la Liga Nacional de Fútbol anunciaron un acuerdo para jugar tres juegos de temporada regular de la NFL de 2019 a 2021, habiendo logrado resultados positivos en turismo y la presencia de México marca a través de los juegos anteriores de la NFL en México.

El acuerdo será formalizado por ambas partes en una fecha posterior, en cuyo momento los representantes de las partes finalizarán los documentos legales y administrativos pertinentes. El acuerdo actual cubrió los juegos en 2016, 2017 y 2018.

El Ministerio de Turismo destacó la importancia de eventos deportivos de alto impacto para la promoción del turismo de México tanto a nivel nacional como internacional. Este acuerdo es parte de las estrategias que se implementan dentro de este sector para aumentar el impacto económico.

Estos eventos también han brindado beneficios económicos a la Ciudad de México y al país, al apoyar al sector turístico y ofrecer a nuestro país una plataforma para promocionarse internacionalmente dentro de los principales mercados que generan turistas.

La relación con la Liga ha servido como una plataforma para impulsar significativamente la industria del turismo en México, con los fanáticos aprovechando la oportunidad de ampliar sus tours y explorar el país.

 

We’re into week 12. While six teams (Minnesota, Detroit, Dallas, Los Angeles Chargers, New York Giants and Washington) have gotten a head start on things Thanksgiving Day, there’s still football to be played.

While no playoff spots have been decided, one team has all but been eliminated from playoff contention as Cleveland lost their 10th game of the 2017 campaign. There are still teams in the hunt, so anything’s possible between now and the end of the regular season.

SEVEN FROM SUNDAY: New Orleans defeated Washington 34-31 in overtime to improve to 8-2. The Saints, who have won eight consecutive games after starting 0-2, are the first team in the Super Bowl era to win its next eight games immediately following an 0-2 start.

The Saints scored 15 points in the final 2:53 of the fourth quarter to force overtime and won the game on WIL LUTZ’s 28-yard field goal in overtime. New Orleans is the first team to win a game after trailing by at least 15 points in the final three minutes of the fourth quarter since 2011 (Denver vs. Miami, October 23, 2011).

•New England defeated Oakland 33-8 at Estadio Azteca in Mexico City. With the victory, the Patriots improved to 8-2 and clinched a .500 or better record for the 17th consecutive season, tying the 1957-73 Cleveland Browns for the second-longest streak in NFL history (1965-85 Dallas Cowboys, 21 consecutive seasons).

New England quarterback Tom Brady completed 30 of 37 passes (81.1 percent) for 339 yards with three touchdowns and no interceptions for a 131.9 passer rating. Brady has 82 career games with at least 300 passing yards and is the only player in NFL history to record a 300-yard passing game in three different countries (United States, United Kingdom and Mexico). Brady is also the first player to have a game with at least three passing touchdowns in three different countries.

•Baltimore defeated Green Bay 23-0 at Lambeau Field and registered the team’s third shutout this season. The Ravens are the fifth team – and first since 2003 (New England) – in the past 30 years to record at least three shutouts in a single season. Three of the previous four teams to accomplish the feat during that span won the Super Bowl in that season – 1991 Washington, 2000 Baltimore and 2003 New England.

•The Los Angeles Chargers had five interceptions – all in the first half – in the team’s 54-24 win over Buffalo. The Chargers are the only team in at least the past 20 years to record five interceptions in the first half of a game.

In Sunday’s contest at StubHub Center, Casey Hayward had two interceptions, Korey Toomer had a 59-yard interception-return touchdown and Tre Boston and Trevor Williams each added an interception.

•Arizona wide receiver Larry Fitzgerald had nine catches for 91 yards and a touchdown in the Cardinals’ loss at Houston. Fitzgerald has 15,157 career receiving yards and passed TONY GONZALEZ (15,127) for the fifth-most receiving yards in NFL history.

Fitzgerald, who has played his entire career with Arizona and Pro Football Hall of Famer Jerry Rice (19,247 with San Francisco) are the only players in NFL history to reach 15,000 career receiving yards with a single team.

•Minnesota wide receiver Adam Thielen had six catches for 123 yards and a touchdown in the Vikings’ 24-7 win over the Los Angeles Rams. Thielen, who has 62 catches for 916 yards this season, joins Randy Moss (2003) as the only players in franchise history to have at least 60 catches and 900 receiving yards in the team’s first 10 games of a season.

•Washington quarterback Kirk Cousins completed 22 of 32 passes (68.8 percent) for 322 yards with three touchdowns and no interceptions for a 132.6 passer rating in the Redskins’ overtime loss at New Orleans. Cousins has nine career games with at least three touchdown passes and no interceptions and tied Pro Football Hall of Famer Sonny Jurgensen and Joe Theismann for the most such games in franchise history.

THE WEEK THAT WAS WEEK 11: DYNAMIC DUO: New Orleans running back Mark Ingram (155 scrimmage yards, rushing touchdown) and rookie Alvin Kamara (116, receiving touchdown) combined for 271 scrimmage yards and two touchdowns in the Saints’ 34-31 overtime win against Washington in Week 11.

Ingram, who has 1,019 scrimmage yards and eight touchdowns this season, and Kamara, who has 906 scrimmage yards and seven touchdowns, are the only running back duo in the Super Bowl era to each have at least 900 scrimmage yards and seven touchdowns through their team’s first 10 games of a season.

BIG GAME BROWN: Pittsburgh wide receiver Antonio Brown had 10 catches for 144 yards and three touchdowns in the Steelers’ 40-17 win against Tennessee last week.

Brown, who leads the league with 70 receptions and 1,026 receiving yards, has four games this season with at least 10 catches and 100 receiving yards, tying Andre Johnson (four, 2008) and Julio Jones (four, 2015) for the most such games in their team’s first 10 games of a season.

The players with the most games with at least 10 catches and 100 receiving yards through their team’s first 10 games of a season:

PLAYER, TEAM (SEASON; GAMES WITH 10+ CATCHES & 100+ YARDS IN TEAM’S 1ST 10 GAMES)
Antonio Brown, Pittsburgh (2017; 4)
Julio Jones, Atlanta (2015; 4)
Andre Johnson, Houston (2008; 4)

Brown has 702 receptions in 111 career games and reached 700 career receptions in the fewest games in NFL history.

The players to reach 700 career receptions in the fewest games in NFL history:

PLAYER – TEAM(S) (FEWEST GAMES TO 700 CAREER RECEPTIONS)
Antonio Brown – Pittsburgh (111)
Marvin Harrison – Indianapolis (114)
Andre Johnson – Houston (120)
Brandon Marshall – Denver, Miami and Chicago (121)
Anquan Boldin – Arizona and Baltimore (123)

FIFTH-GERALD: Arizona wide receiver Larry Fitzgerald had nine catches for 91 yards and a touchdown in the Cardinals’ loss to Houston in Week 11.

Fitzgerald has 15,157 career receiving yards and surpassed Tony Gonzalez (15,127) for the fifth-most receiving yards in NFL history.

The players with the most career receiving yards in NFL history:

PLAYER – TEAM(S)(CAREER RECEIVING YARDS)
Jerry Rice – San Francisco, Oakland and Seattle (22,895)^
Terrell Owens – San Francisco, Philadelphia, Dallas, Buffalo and Cincinnati (15,934)
Randy Moss – Minnesota, Oakland, New England, Tennessee and San Francisco (15,292)
Isaac Bruce – Los Angeles/St. Louis Rams and San Francisco (15,208)
Larry Fitzgerald – Arizona (15,157)*
Tony Gonzalez – Kansas City and Atlanta (15,127)
*Active
^Pro Football Hall of Famer

SUPER SAINT: New Orleans wide receiver Michael Thomas had six catches for 91 yards in the Saints’ 34-31 overtime victory over Washington last week.

Thomas has 157 receptions in 25 career games and passed Anquan Boldin (154) for the second-most catches by a player in his first 25 games in NFL history. Only Odell Beckham, Jr. (176) had more.

The players with the most receptions in their first 25 games in NFL history:

PLAYER, TEAM (RECEPTIONS IN 1ST 25 CAREER GAMES)
Odell Beckham, Jr., New York Giants (176)
Michael Thomas, New Orleans (157)
Anquan Boldin, Arizona (154)
Reggie Bush, New Orleans (143)
Jarvis Landry, Miami (143)

SOARING EAGLE: Philadelphia quarterback Carson Wentz threw two touchdown passes in the Eagles’ 37-9 win at Dallas last week.

Wentz, who leads the NFL with 25 touchdown passes, has the third-most touchdown passes by a first or second-year quarterback through their team’s first 10 games of a season.

The first or second-year quarterbacks with the most touchdown passes through their team’s first 10 games of a season:

PLAYER, TEAM (SEASON – PASSING TDS IN TEAM’S 1ST 10 GAMES)
Dan Marino, Miami (1984 – 29)^
Kurt Warner, St. Louis (1999 – 27)^
Carson Wentz, Philadelphia (2017 – 25)
Jeff Garcia, San Francisco (2000 – 24)
Johnny Unitas, Baltimore Colts (1957 – 22)^
^Pro Football Hall of Famer

SPLITTING THE UPRIGHTS: Five players converted field goals of at least 50 yards in Week 11, including New England’s STEPHEN GOSTKOWSKI, who made a franchise-record 62-yarder in the Patriots’ 33-8 win over Oakland in Mexico City.

There have been 73 made field goals of at least 50 yards this season, the most through the first 11 weeks of a season in NFL history.

The seasons with the most 50+ yard field goals made through the first 11 weeks:

SEASON – 50+ YARD FGS MADE THROUGH 1ST 11 WEEKS
2017 – 73
2015 – 70
2013 – 62
2014 – 61
2011 – 60

Buffalo kicker Stephen Hauschka made his only field-goal attempt, a 50-yarder, in the Bills’ Week 11 loss at the Los Angeles Chargers.

Hauschka, who has converted all six of his 50+ yard field-goal attempts this season, has made an NFL record 13 consecutive 50+ yard field-goal attempts.

The players with the most consecutive made field goals of at least 50 yards in NFL history:

PLAYER – TEAM(S) (SEASONS; MOST CONSECUTIVE FGS MADE OF 50+ YARDS)
Stephen Hauschka – Seattle and Buffalo (2015-17; 13)*
Matt Prater – Detroit (2015-17; 12)
Justin Tucker – Baltimore (2015-16; 12)
Blair Walsh – Minnesota (2012-13; 12)
Robbie Gould – Chicago (2010-13; 12)
*Active streak

Detroit kicker Matt Prater made two field goals, including the game-winning 52-yarder with 1:35 remaining in the Lions’ 27-24 victory over the Bears.

Prater has converted three career game-winning field goals of at least 50 yards with under two minutes remaining in the fourth quarter or overtime, tied with five others for the most such field goals in NFL history.

Prater has made 42 career field goals of at least 50 yards, tied with John Kasay (42) for the third-most in NFL history. Only Sebastian Janikowski (55) and Jason Hanson (52) have more such field goals.

The players with the most career field goals of at least 50 yards in NFL history:

PLAYER – TEAM(S) (SEASONS; 50+ YARD FIELD GOALS MADE)
Sebastian Janikowski – Oakland (2000-present; 55)*
Jason Hanson – Detroit (1992-2012; 52)
Matt Prater – Denver and Detroit (2007-present; 42)*
John Kasay – Seattle, Carolina and New Orleans (1991-2011; 42)
*Active

WHAT TO WATCH FOR IN WEEK 12: THE CLIMB CONTINUES: Arizona wide receiver LARRY FITZGERALD has 1,194 receptions for 15,157 receiving yards and 108 touchdowns in his 14-year career.

With 52 receiving yards on Sunday against Jacksonville, Fitzgerald will surpass Isaac Bruce (15,208) for the fourth-most receiving yards in NFL history.

The players with the most receiving yards in NFL history:

PLAYER – TEAM(S)(CAREER RECEIVING YARDS)
Jerry Rice – San Francisco, Oakland and Seattle (22,895)^
Terrell Owens – San Francisco, Philadelphia, Dallas, Buffalo and Cincinnati (15,934)
Randy Moss – Minnesota, Oakland, New England, Tennessee and San Francisco (15,292)
Isaac Bruce – Los Angeles/St. Louis Rams and San Francisco (15,208)
Larry Fitzgerald – Arizona (15,157)*
*Active
^Pro Football Hall of Famer

With six receptions this week, Fitzgerald will join Pro Football Hall of Famer JERRY RICE (1,549) and TONY GONZALEZ (1,325) as the only players in NFL history with at least 1,200 career receptions.

The players with the most receptions in NFL history:

PLAYER – TEAM(S)(CAREER RECEPTIONS)
Jerry Rice – San Francisco, Oakland and Seattle (1,549)^
Tony Gonzalez – Kansas City and Atlanta (1,325)
Larry Fitzgerald – Arizona (1,194)*
*Active
^Pro Football Hall of Famer

Playing in his 213th career game, Fitzgerald would reach 1,200 career receptions in the fewest games in NFL history, surpassing Rice (221 games) and Gonzalez (247).

TOM TERRIFIC: New England quarterback Tom Brady leads the NFL with 3,146 passing yards and a 110.9 passer rating this season.

Brady has 64,728 career passing yards and needs 272 passing yards against Miami on Sunday to become the fourth player in NFL history with at least 65,000 passing yards.

The players with the most passing yards in NFL history:

PLAYER – TEAM(S)(CAREER PASSING YARDS)
Peyton Manning –  Indianapolis and Denver (71,940)
Brett Favre – Green Bay, New York Jets and Minnesota (71,838)^
Drew Brees – San Diego and New Orleans (68,894)*
Tom Brady – New England (64,728)*
*Active
^Pro Football Hall of Famer

MOVING UP THE RANKS: Indianapolis running back Frank Gore has 13,574 career rushing yards in his 13-year NFL career.

With 89 rushing yards on Sunday against Tennessee, Gore will surpass Pro Football Hall of Famer JEROME BETTIS (13,662) for the sixth-most rushing yards in NFL history. All six players currently in front of Gore are enshrined in the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

The players with the most rushing yards in NFL history:

PLAYER – TEAM(S)(RUSHING YARDS)
Emmitt Smith – Dallas and Arizona (18,355)^
Walter Payton – Chicago (16,726)^
Barry Sanders – Detroit (15, 269)^
Curtis Martin – New England and New York Jets (14,101)^
LaDainian Tomlinson – San Diego and New York Jets (13,684)^
Jerome Bettis – Los Angeles/St. Louis Rams and Pittsburgh (13,662)^
Frank Gore – San Francisco and Indianapolis (13,574)*
*Active
^Pro Football Hall of Famer

FLYING FALCON: Atlanta wide receiver Julio Jones has 551 receptions in 89 career games and needs eight catches on Sunday against Tampa Bay to surpass Anquan Boldin (558) for the most catches by a player in his first 90 games in NFL history.

The players with the most receptions in their first 90 games in NFL history:

PLAYER – TEAM (RECEPTIONS IN 1ST 90 CAREER GAMES)
Anquan Boldin – Arizona (558)
Antonio Brown – Pittsburgh (554)
Julio Jones – Atlanta (551)*
*Through 89 games

Jones has 8,396 receiving yards in 89 career games and needs 107 yards on Sunday to surpass Pro Football Hall of Famer Lance Alworth (8,502) for the most receiving yards by a player in his first 90 games in NFL history.

The players with the most receiving yards in their first 90 games in NFL history:

PLAYER – TEAM (RECEIVING YARDS IN 1ST 90 CAREER GAMES)
Lance Alworth – San Diego (8,502)^
Julio Jones – Atlanta (8,396)*
^Pro Football Hall of Famer
*Through 89 games

DYNAMIC DUO: New Orleans running backsMark Ingram (1,019 scrimmage yards and eight touchdowns) and rookie Alvin Kamara (906 scrimmage yards and seven touchdowns) have each gained at least 900 scrimmage yards and scored seven touchdowns through the team’s first 10 games this season.

Ingram and Kamara can become the seventh pair of teammates – and the only running back duo – in the Super Bowl era to each have at least 1,000 scrimmage yards and eight touchdowns through their team’s first 11 games of a season.

The teammates with at least 1,000 scrimmage yards and eight touchdowns in their team’s first 11 games of a season:

TEAM – SEASON (PLAYER – SCRIMMAGE YDS; TDS / PLAYER – SCRIMMAGE YDS; TDS)
Green Bay – 2014 (Jordy Nelson – 1,066; 9/ Eddie Lacy – 1,007; 9)
Indianapolis – 2000 (Edgerrin James – 1,586; 14 / Marvin Harrison – 1,066; 8)^
St. Louis – 2000 (Marshall Faulk – 1,447; 15 / Issac Bruce – 1,185; 9)^
Indianapolis – 1999 (Edgerrin James – 1,547; 9 / Marvin Harrison – 1,118; 12)^
Dallas – 1995 (Emmitt Smith – 1,643; 20 / Michael Irvin – 1,169; 8)^
Dallas – 1966 (Dan Reeves – 1,088; 14 / Bob Hayes – 1,002; 10)^
New Orleans – 2017 (Mark Ingram – 1,019; 8 / Alvin Kamara – 906; 7)*
*Through 10 games
^Bruce, Harrison, Irvin and Hayes are Pro Football Hall of Famers

DOMINANT DEFENSE: The Jacksonville Jaguars have allowed a league-low 14.1 points per game this season and have held opponents to fewer than 10 points in six of their first 10 games.

On Sunday at Arizona, the Jaguars can become the fifth team since 1940 to allow fewer than 10 points in seven of its first 11 games to start a season. The four previous teams to accomplish the feat all advanced to the NFL Championship/Super Bowl that season.

The teams with the most games allowing fewer than 10 points in their first 11 games to start a season since 1940:

TEAM – SEASON (GAMES ALLOWING FEWER THAN 10 POINTS, SEASON RESULT)
Chicago – 1942 (8, Advanced to NFL Championship)
Pittsburgh – 1975 (7, Won Super Bowl)
Chicago – 1963 (7, Won NFL Championship)
Green Bay – 1962 (7, Won NFL Championship)
Jacksonville – 2017 (6)*
*Through 10 games

SHINING STEELERS: Entering Week 12, Pittsburgh running back Le’Veon Bell leads the NFL with 886 rushing yards and Steelers wide receiver Antonio Brown leads the league with 1,026 receiving yards.

The Steelers are looking to join the 1999 Indianapolis Colts and the 1991 Dallas Cowboys as the only teams in the Super Bowl era to finish the year with the league’s leading rusher and receiver.

The teams to finish a season with the league’s leading rusher and receiver in the Super Bowl era:

TEAM – SEASO6N (LEADING RUSHER – RUSH YARDS / LEADING RECEIVER – RECEIVING YARDS)
Indianapolis – 1999 (Edgerrin James – 1,553 / Marvin Harrison – 1,663)^
Dallas – 1991 (Emmitt Smith – 1,563 / Michael Irvin – 1,523)
Pittsburgh – 2017 (Le’Veon Bell – 886 / Antonio Brown – 1,026)*
*Through Week 11
^Harrison, Smith and Irvin are Pro Football Hall of Famers

WONDERFUL WILSON: Seattle quarterback Russell Wilson ranks second in the NFL with 2,801 passing yards this season.

With 199 passing yards on Sunday, Wilson will become the fourth quarterback in NFL history to pass for at least 3,000 yards in each of his first six seasons.

The quarterbacks with at least 3,000 passing yards in each of their first six seasons in NFL history:

PLAYER, TEAM (SEASONS)
Andy Dalton, Cincinnati (2011-16)
Cam Newton, Carolina (2011-16)
Peyton Manning, Indianapolis (1998-2003)
Russell Wilson, Seattle (2012-16)*
*In sixth season

As the NFL enters Week 12, there are five teams with at least eight wins, led by the 9-1 Philadelphia Eagles – Philadelphia (9-1), Minnesota (8-2), New England (8-2), New Orleans (8-2) and Pittsburgh (8-2).

The Eagles are the 51st team in the Super Bowl era to start a season 9-1. Prior to this season, all 50 of the previous 50 teams to start a season 9-1 made the playoffs, 23 advanced to the Super Bowl (46 percent) and 11 won the Super Bowl (22 percent).

There were 102 teams to start 8-2 in the Super Bowl era entering this season and 96 made the playoffs (94.1 percent), 30 advanced to the Super Bowl (29.4 percent) and 16 won the Super Bowl (15.7 percent).

Philadelphia and New Orleans currently have the longest active winning streaks in the NFL having each won eight consecutive games. Minnesota and New England each have active six-game winning streaks while Pittsburgh enters Week 12 having won its past five games.

As for last week, we didn’t do too bad, going 8-6 for week 11 and 95-66 for the year. There are no more byes on the docket for 2017, All the byes for the 2017 season have been used and Carolina, Indianapolis, New York Jets and San Francisco return from their week-long vacations. Week 12 began on Thursday with a Thanksgiving tripleheader for the 12th consecutive year. Traditional competitors Detroit and Dallas hosted games during the day (Detroit hosted and lost a 30-23 heartbreaker to Minnesota, Dallas hosted and fell 28-6 to the Los Angeles Chargers and Washington broke a 3-3 halftime tie against the New york Giants to take a 20-10 win over their NFC East rivals Thursday night). After Thanksgiving, the week continues with a full slate of games on Sunday and concludes with a pair of primetime contests. On Sunday night at 8:30 p.m. on NBC, the Green Bay Packers will visit the Pittsburgh Steelers and the week 12 curtain closes in Houston as the Texans host the Baltimore Ravens at 8:30 p.m. on ESPN.

As an added treat, so you can use those Thanksgiving leftovers, we’re going to make every game “DRILL WORTHY.” (think of it as an early Christmas present) (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 57 last June and dates a 42-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?”

Here are the Sunday and Monday picks for week 12.

Tampa Bay (4-6) at ATLANTA (6-4), 1 p.m. on FOX and DirecTV 709. Separated by a 450-mile, 7 1/2-hour drive along I-75. the Tampa Bay Buccaneers make their way to the Big Peach for an NFC South contest against the defending NFC champions.

Tampa Bay comes into the contest after their 30-20 win at Miami in a contest that was slated to be the season opener for both teams but Hurricane Irma intervened and forced the game to be moved to last week. Tampa Bay led the Dolphins 20-7 at the intermission, then held off a late Miami second half rally as the Dolphins outscored Tampa Bay 13-10 in the second half. Miami did outrush their Sunshine State counterparts 83-53 and Miami’s Matt Moore outpaced Tampa Bay’s Ryan Fitzpatrick (subbing for Jameis Winston – shoulder) 282 to 275 (Fitzpatrick threw a pair of TDs in the 10-point win at Hard Rock Stadium). Tampa Bay was 3 of 13 on third down conversions and held the ball for 31:49, while the Dolphns held the pigskin for 28:11, going 6 of 13 on third down, 0 of 1 on fourth down.

The defending NFC South and NFC champs led from start to finish in their meeting with Seattle in an NFC Divisonal rematch last Monday night and the Falcons surived in the land of Grunge, taking a 34-31 prime time win at Century Link Field. Atlanta led 24-17 and stopped a Seattle fake field goal late in the first half when Seahawks TE Justin Wilson was tackled by DT Grady Jarrett with second seconds left before the intermission. Atlanta would lead 34-31 late in the contest and breathed a huge sigh of relief when Blair Walsh’s 52-yard field goal try that would have sent the contest into overtime fell short of the goal posts with 2 seconds left. Seattle outrushed the Falcons 136-89 and Matt Ryan threw for 195 yards and a pair of TDs to WR Mohamed Sanu and TE Levine Toilolo, while Seahawks QB Russell Wilson, who scored on a two-point conversion that pulled his team to within three with three minutes left in regulation, threw for 258 yards and a pair of TDs to TE Jimmy Graham and WR Doug Baldwin. Atlanta was 9 of 14 on third down conversions and kept the ball for 30:21, while Seattle was 5 of 12 on third down (1 of 2 on fourth down) and held the ball for 29:39.

Tampa Bay holds a slim 24-23 lead in the series and the Buccaneers have outscored Atlanta 1,011-969. They split the 2016 meetings, each winning in the other team’s facility.

They met in week one in the final season of the Georgia Dome and Tampa Bay led 17-13 at the half, then held off a late Atlanta rally to take a 31-24 win in the Big Peach. winston threw for 281 yards and four TD passes in the season opener for both teams, while Ryan threw for 334 yards and a pair of TDs of his own. Tampa Bay outrushed Atlanta 90-52 in the road win, going 3 of 10 on third down tries and kept the ball for 27:37. Atlanta ruled the clock and kept the pigskin for 32:23, going 3 of 13 on third down, 1 of 2 on fourth down.

That was round one.

Round two? The Sunshine State in week nine on a Thursday night and the Falcons would get revenge on Tampa Bay, taking a 43-28 win at Raymond James Stadium. Atlanta led 20-14 at the intermission, then floored the gas in the second half, outscoring Tampa Bay 23-14 in the final 30 minuts of play. Atlanta outrushed Tampa Bay 136-73 and Ryan threw for 344 yards and four TDs, while Winston threw for 261 yards and three TDs. Atlanta, in forcing a pair of Tampa Bay turnovers, went 6 of 10 on third down conversions and ruled the clock, as they kept the ball for 33:28, while the Bucs were 26:32 in time of possession, going 8 of 14 on third down, 1 of 2 on fourth down.

In the season opener in the Big Peach, the Falcons were 3 point favorites and the Bucs covered, winning by 7 and both clubs covered the 47 1/2 over/under, tallying 55 points. In the week nine contest, Atlanta covered the 3-point spread, winning by 15 and as was the case in the first meeting, both teams took care of the over/under (which was 51 1/2) by scoring 61 points. In the Sunday contest at Mercedez Benz Stadium, the Falcons are favored by 8 1/2 and the over/under’s 48 1/2. Atlanta’s won three of their last four contests and have the upper hand as the sixth seed in the post-season party. Tampa Bay’s trying to knock the defending champ off their perch. Falcons fans feel they’re staying on the perch. Tampa Bay could make this one closer than 8 1/2 but Atlanta prevails at home.

Cleveland (0-10) at Cincinnati (4-6), 1 p.m. on CBS and DirecTV 705. A pair of AFC North rivals meet in southern Ohio as it’s Cleveland’s turn to make the 3 1/2-hour, 249-mile trip down I-71 to face off against the Cincinnati Bengals.

Cleveland lost its 10th straight contest of the 2017 campaign, losing 19-7 to Jacksonville at First Energy Stadium. Although the Browns trailed 10-7 at the break, after a scoreless third quarter, the Jaguars would score their final 9 points of the contest unchallenged. The Browns were outrushed 139-50, with rookie RB Leonard Fournette doing most of the work, tallying 111 yards of his own and Jaguars QB Blake Bortles threw for 154 yards and a TD for the winners. Browns QB DeShone Kizer did not have the day he hoped for, throwing for 179 yards while being sacked five times and picked off twice. The Browns on third down conversions went 3 of 13 (they were 0 of 1 on fourth) and kept the ball for 23:05, while the Jaguars were 6 of 20 on third down, 1 of 1 on fourth down and held the ball for 36:55.

The Bengals held off a late Denver rally in the Mile High City and came away 20-17 winners over the Broncos last Sunday at Sports Authority Field at Mile High. Cincinnati led 13-7 and had their largest lead of the contest at 10 points with 8:56 left in regulation when Andy Dalton and WR A.J. Green connected on an 18-yard TD toss. Denver would make it a 7-point contest with 5:05 left to play when Brock Osweiler and WR Demaryius Thomas connected on a 17-yard TD pass. Denver would have one last rally late in the contest but turned the ball over on downs, allowing the Bengals to run out the clock. Denver did outrush Cincy 112-49, while Osweiler threw for 254 yards and the lone TD pass (he was sacked three times with an intercepion) and Dalton threw for 154 yards and three TDs. Denver went 12 of 21 on third down conversions (they were 1 of 2 on fourth down) and the Broncos ruled time and kept the ball for 35:11, while Cincinnati went 24:49 in time of possession, going 7 of 15 on third down conversions.

It’s a week four Buckeye State rematch, this time along the shores of the Ohio River and the Bengals came away 31-7 winners in Cleveland. After a scoreless first quarter at First Energy Stadium, the Bengals led 21-0 at the half and took a 30-0 lead at the end of three quarters of football before Cleveland’s Darius Johnson would end Cincinnati’s bid for a shutout, scoring from a yard out with 1:54 left in the contest. The Bengals outrushed Cleveland 86-45 and Dalton threw for 286 yards and four TDs, connecting with TE Tyler Kroft on two of those tosses. The Bengals in the somewhat lopsided win went 6 of 11 on third down and kept the ball for 35:02, while the Browns held the ball for 24:58, going 5 of 16, 1 of 2 on third and fourth downs.

In the week four contest along the shores of Lake Erie, the Bengals were favored and easily covered the 3-point spread, winning by 24. The two clubs barely missed the 40 over/under, tallying 38 points. This time, the oddsmakers like the Bengals again, this time as 8 1/2 point favorites at home with a 38 over/under. Cincinnati’s making a playoff push. The Browns? They want their season to be over. Bengals put Cleveland one step closer out of their misery and win at home and could cover the 8 1/2.

Tennessee (6-3) at Indianapolis (3-7), 1 p.m. on FOX and DirecTV 706. It’s an AFC South rematch as the Colts host Tennessee at Lucas Oil Stadium in the Hoosier State.

The Titans were taken to the woodshed by Pittsburgh, as the Steelers were 40-17 winners last Thursday night at Heinz Field. Tennessee trailed 16-7 at the intermission and pulled to within 6 after three quarters of play before the Steelers scored 17 fourth quarter points unchallenged. Pittsburgh outrushed Tennessee 65-52 and Mariota struggled in the contest, throwing four interceptions and being sacked five times, while throwing for 306 yards. For Pittsburgh, Ben Roethlisbeger threw for 299 yards and four TDs in the contest in Western Pennsylvania, connecting with WR Antoino Brown on threw of them. Tennessee was 5 of 13 on third down tries (1 of 2 on fourth down) and kept the ball for 28:20, while the Steelers ruled the clock, keeping the ball for 31:40, while going 4 of 12 on third down, 0 of 1 on fourth down.

The Colts return to action after their week 11 bye. Before that bye, they let a 10-3 lead against Pittsburgh get away from them as they lost to the Steelers 20-17 in the final seconds of the contest. Indy would lead 17-9 after three quarters of play before Pittsburgh roared back to tie the contest with 11:52 left in the contest when Steelers WR Vince McDonald and QB Ben Roethlisberger connected on a 7-yard TD strike and tied things up when Roethlisberger and WR Martavis Bryant found success on the two-point try. The contest would stay tied until the 3:28 mark, when the Colts punted the ball to Pittsburgh. The Steelers would then use a 10-play, 70 yards that used all of the 3:10 left on the clock when Chris Boswell connected on a 33-yard field goal as the clock struck :00. LeVeon Bell led all rushers, running for 80 of his team’s 88 yards, while the Colts tallied 71. Roethlisberger threw for 236 yards and a pair of TDs, including one to rookie WR Ju-Ju Smith-Schuster, while Jacoby Brissett threw for 222 yards and a pair of TDs, while being sacked three times and picked off once. Pittsburgh went 5 of 13 on third down tries at Lucas Oil and kept the ball for 29:58 (including the final drive of the game), while the Colts were 6 of 15, keeping the ball for 30:02.

They met in Nashville in week six and the Titans took at 36-22 Monday night win in the Music City. Tennessee erased a 13-9 deficit at Nissan Stadium in the first meeting, outscoring the Colts 27-9, capping the scoring in the contest when RB Derrick Henry scored from 72 yards out with 47 seconds left in the game. Henry ran for 131 yards as the Titans outrushed the Cotls 168-85 and Mariota threw for 306 yards and a TD, while Brissett threw for 212.  Tennessee on third down went 6 of 13 (they were 1 of 1 on fourth down) and kept the ball for 35:53, while the Colts were 2 of 9 on third down, 0 of 1 on fourth down and held the ball for 24:07.

In the week six prime time contest, Tennessee covered the 8-point spread, winning by 14 and both teams covered the 48 over/under, tallying 58 points. Tennessee’s favored again in the rematch, coming in as 3 1/2 point favorites with a 44 over/under. The Colts at times are better than their record but they’ve also stumbled at times. The Titans are trying to take the AFC South lead back from Jacksonville. Titans complete the sweep of the series and cover the 3 1/2.

Buffalo (5-5) at Kansas City (6-4), 1 p.m. on CBS and DirecTV 707. A pair of old-school AFC foes meet in the Show-Me State as Kansas City, sitting atop the AFC East, takes on the Buffalo Bills at Arrowhead.

Buffalo dropped a 54-24 decision over the Los Angeles Chargers last Sunday on the West Coast. win over Buffalo last week. Buffalo trailed the Bolts 37-7 at the break at Stub Hub Center and could never get on track at Stub Hub Center, even though the Bills outrushed Los Angeles 173-146 (Buffalo’s LeSean McCoy led all rushers with 114 yards and a TD) in a rout that saw the Bills turn the ball over six time (five Nate Peterman interceptions) and Chargers QB Philip Rivers throwing for 251 yards and a pair of TDs. The Chargers on third down were 7 of 14 and held on to the ball for 36:05, while the Bills were 6 of 14 on third down, 1 of 2 on fourth down and held the ball for 23:55.

The Chiefs took the New York Giants to overtime in the Meadowlands last Sunday, only to fall to the Giants 12-9 at Met Life Stadium in East Rutherford. Kansas City trailed 6-3 at the half, as Giants WR Orleans Darkwa scoring the game’s only TD in the first quarter. Kansas City’s Hal Butker would eventually send the contest into overtime before Aldrick would send the Giants to their second win of the season, booting a 29-yard field with 1:59 left in overtime. Kansas City outrushed the Giants 134-112, with Eli Manning throwing for 205 yards, while the Chiefs’ Alex Smtih threw for 230 yards. The Chiefs on third down went 3 of 11 on third down (they were 1 of 1 on fourth down) and kept the ball for 37:16, while the Giants kept the ball for 30:50, going 3 of 13, 2 of 3 on third and fourth downs.

Including games that were played when the Chiefs were known as the Dallas Texans and contests played at War Memorial Stadium and Swope Field, Buffalo leads the series 23-20-1 and they have outscored the Chiefs 954-892. However… the Chiefs have come away winners in their last three contests, including a 30-22 victory at Arrowhead in 2015 (Buffalo’s last win over the Chiefs came in 2012 in upstate New York by a final of 35-17. The Chiefs are favored by 9 1/2 and the over/under’s 45. Both clubs are trying to get their ducks back in a row. Buffalo’s lost two games in a row in really bad fashion. Make it three. The Bills will keep it close but the Chiefs are up to date in Kansas City and takes the win at home.

Miami (4-6) at New England (8-2), 1 p.m. on CBS and DirecTV 708. A pair of AFC East rivals with seven Super Bowl between them meet in Foxboro as Tom Brady and the New England Patriots welcome the Miami Dolphins to Gillette Stadium.

Miami and Tampa Bay were supposed to meet in week one at Hard Rock Stadium. There was one problem. Irma. She got in the way of their plans and the two teams rescheduled for last week. It was the visiing Buccaneers from Tampa that came away with the 30-20 win at Miami. Miami trailed 20-7 at the intermission, then rallied in the second half and outscored Tampa Bay 13-10 in the second half. Miami did outrush their Sunshine State counterparts 83-53 and Miami’s Matt Moore outpaced Tampa Bay’s Ryan Fitzpatrick (subbing for Jameis Winston – shoulder) 282 to 275 (Fitzpatrick threw a pair of TDs in the 10-point win at Hard Rock Stadium). Tampa Bay was 3 of 13 on third down conversions and held the ball for 31:49, while the Dolphns held the pigskin for 28:11, going 6 of 13 on third down, 0 of 1 on fourth down.

New England all but manhandled Oakland in Mexico City, taking a 33-8 over the Raiders last Sunday at Estadio Azteca. Leading 17-0 at the half and 30-0 at the end of three quarters, the defending Super Bowl champs held Oakland to a fourth quarter TD when WR Amari Cooper and QB Derek Carr (237 yards) connected on a 9-yard TD toss with 11:43 left in the contest. Brady burned the Raiders for 339 yards and three TDs, while the Raiders managed to outrush New England 109-89. The Pats held the ball for 27:37, going 5 of 10 on third down tries South of the Border, while the Raiders went 7 of 15 on third down and ruled the clock, as they kept the ball for 32:23.

The Dolphins hold a 52-48 lead in the series and have outscored the Pats 2,154-2,142, which includes contests that took place at Fenway Park, Schafer Stadium and the Orange Bowl. They met last year and New England took wins in the Sunshine State and in Foxboro (Miami’s last win in the series came in 2015 by a final of 20-10 in the Sunshine State).

Round 1… Foxboro, week two. New England led 24-3 at the break, then held Miami off to take a 31-24 win at Gillette Stadium. Jimmy Garoppolo, who took over for Brady (suspension), threw for 234 yards and three TDs, connecting with WR Danny Amendola on two of the tosses, while Ryan Tannehill threw for 389 yards and two TDs. New England’s LeGarrett Blount ran for 123 yards and a TD and New England outrushed Miami 161-70 in the first meeting. Both teams were 50 percent on third down tries (Miami was 5 of 10, New England 7 of 14) and the Dolphins, who went 0 of 1 on fourth down, kept the ball for 23:14, while the Pats held the pigskin for 36:46.

There was a rematch in this series (did you think there wouldn’t?).

Round 2… Miami Gardens in week 17. Both teams were in the post-season party and the Pats had already clinched the AFC East title, so there was really nothing to play for, aside from preparing for the playoffs. Brady was back under center and made the Dolphins pay, throwing for 276 yards and four TDs to take the 35-14 win in the Sunshine State. New England outrushed the Dolphins 120-75 and forced a pair of Miami turnovers in the win. Both clubs went 7 of 12 on third down tries and the Pats, who led 20-7 at the half, kept the ball for 31:22, while the Dolphins held the pigskin for 28:38.

New England barely covered the 6 1/2 point spread in the week two contest in Foxboro, coming away 7-point winners and the two teams did cover the 41 1/2 over/under with 55 points. In the week 17 matchup, New England coverd the 9 1/2 point spread in the Sunshine State, winning by 21 and the teams covered the 44 1/2 over/under with 49 points. New England’s favored by 16 points with a 47 1/2 over/under. The 47 1/2 makes sense. The 16’s a bit steep. Miami’s been a somewhat decent team but they haven’t been a great team and are trying to pass the Pats as kings of the AFC East mountain. Long live the king. Pats win but expect Miami to put up a fight in Foxboro and could make it closer than 16.

Carolina (7-3) at New York Jets (4-6), 1 p.m. on FOX and DirecTV 710. Cam Newton and the Carolina Panther make their way up the East coast for an early afternoon meeting wit the New York Jets in the Meadowlands. Both clubs come off wins and both teams had byes last week.

Carolina and Newton made quick work of Miami two weeks ago in Charlotte, taking a 45-21 win over the Dolphins at Bank of America Stadium. The Panthers led 17-3 at the half and held serve in the second half, outscoring Miami 28-14. Carolina outrushed Miami 294-100 (Carolina’s Jonathan Stewart led all rushers with 110 yards), while Newton threw for 254 yards and four TDs, outpacing Jay Cutler, who threw for 213 yards and a pair of TDs. The Panthers in the Monday night contest in the Tar Heel State went 11 of 14 on third down, keeping the ball for 35:39. Miami was not a slouch on third down either, going 7 of 12 (they were 0 of 1 on fourth down) and the Dolphins held the ball for 24:21.

The Jets also had a bye but their last game was not as succesfull as Carolina’s, as they fell to Tampa Bay 15-10 in Tampa. Tampa Bay broke a 3-3 tie at the half as the Buccaneers would outscore GangGreen 12-7 in the final 30 minutes of action. Outrushed 90-56, the J-E-T-S! JETS! JETS! JETS! saw Josh McCown sacked six times, throwing for 262 yards, while Ryan Fitzpatrick, who took over for Jameis Winston (shoulder) threw for 187 yards (both threw a TD pass and an interception in the game). The J-E-T-S! JETS! JETS! JETS! were 3 of 15 on third down, 1 of 2 on fourth down and GangGreen held the ball for 28:06, while the Buccaneers ruled the clock and kept the ball for 31:54, going 7 of 16 on third down.

The series is even at 3-3 and the Panthers have outscore GangGreen 125-116. Carolina won the last meeting, coming away 30-20 winners in Charlotte in 2013, while GangGreen’s last win came in the Meadowlands in 2009 by a final of 17-6. Carolina’s favored by 5 and the over/under’s 40. Both teams are coming off a break, both clubs are all but going in different directions. New York makes this one interesting but Carolina prevails in the Tar Heel State, taking the win and covering the 5.

Chicago (3-7) at Philadelphia (9-1), 1 p.m. on FOX and DirecTV 711. Deep dish pizza meets cheesesteak as Philadelphia, atop the NFC East mountain, hosts Da Bears at Lincoln Financial Field.

Chicago dropped a 27-24 decision against Detroit in Chicago last week. Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford passed for 299 yards with two touchdowns and no interceptions, while Lions K Matt Prater converted the game-winning 52-yard field goal with 1:35 remaining in the contest. Detroit trailed 21-17 at the intermission at Soldier Field before they rallied to take the win on the road in the Windy City. Chicago rushed for 222 yards, outrushing Detroit, who tallied 65 (Chicago’s Jordan Howard led all rushers with 125 yards and a TD) in the NFC North matchup. The Lions were 3 of 10 on third down conversions and kept the ball for 30:36, while Da Bears held on to the pigskin for 29:24, going 3 of 9 on third down, 1 of 1 on fourth down.

Philadelphia maintained control of first place in the NFC East, as they rallied from a 9-7 deficit at the intermission in Dallas to take 37-9 win over the Cowboys (without Ezekiel Elliott) at AT&T Stadium last Sunday night. Philadelphia scored 30 second half points unchallenged to erase the deficit and take the lead in the Sunday night prime time affair. The Eagles rushed for 215 yards in the Sunday night affair, while Dallas tallied 112. Dak Prescott threw for 145 yards in the contest but the Eagles made life miserable for him, as he was sacked four times and picked off three times, while Carson Wentz threw for 168 yards and a pair of TDs with no interceptions or sacks. Philadelphia, who played turnover-free football against their NFC East foes, went 5 of 14 on third down (1 of 1 on fourth down) and kept the ball for 29:29, while the Cowboys ruled the clock and kept the pigskin for 30:31, going 3 of 14 on third down, 0 of 1 on fourth down.

Da Bears lead the series 28-11-1 (which includes games that were played at Wrigley Field) and Chicago has outscored Philadelphia 870-586. The Eagles were 29-14 winners last year in the Windy City in the last meeting between the clubs (Chicago’s last win over Philadelphia came in 2011 in the City of Brotherly Love by a final of 30-24). They met in week two at Soldier Field and the Eagles led 9-6 at the half before proceeding to outscore Chicago 20-7 in the second half. Philadelphia outrushed Chicago 100-64 and Wentz threw for 190 yards and a TD, outpacing Jay Cutler, who threw for 157 yards with three sack and an interception.

Philadelphia covered the 3-point spread in the week two contest that was played on a Monday night, coming away winners by 15 points. Both teams scored 43 points, barely covering the 42 1/2 over/under. Philly’s favored by 13 1/2 and the over/under’s 44. Granted, Chicago’s bad but not 13 1/2 bad. They’ll keep it close in the City of Brotherly Love but Philly prevails at home.

New Orleans (8-2) at Los Angeles Rams (8-2), 4:25 p.m. on CBS and DirecTV 712. A pair of first place teams meet on the West Coast as the Los Angeles Rams, in first in the NFC West, face off against the New Orleans Saints, in the top spot in the NFC South.

Redskins quarterback Kirk Cousins passed for 322 yards with three touchdowns and no interceptions but it wasn’t enough as Washington fell to New Orleans 34-31 in overtime at the Superdome. The Redskins let a 15-point lead in the contest in the Big Easy get away from them as Drew Brees (385 yards) connected on a pair of TD passes late in the fourth quarter (one to TE Josh Hill, the other to rookie RB Alvin Kamara) to send the game into overtime, where K Will Lutz sent Saints fans home happy campers with the 3-point win. New Orleans outrushed Washington 160-156 and it was a battle of running backs, as Washington’s Samajie Perine (117 yards) and New Orleans’ Mark Ingram (134 yards) each led their teams with 100-yard days (each had a rushing TD in the overtime contest). Both clubs were 4 of 12 on third down tries (on fourth down, the Redskins were 2 of 2, while the Saints were 1 of 1) and the Redskins ruled the clock, keeping the ball for 32:11 to New Orleans’ 30:24.

The Rams dropped a 24-7 decison to Minnesota at US Bank Stadium last Sunday. The Vikings broke a 7-7 tie at the half as the Vikings scored their final 17 points in the fourth quarter and did it unchallenged. The Rams were outrushed by Minnesota 171-45, while Minnesota’s Case Keenum threw for 280 yards with a TD and no interceptions. For Los Angeles, Jared Goff threw for 225 yards but was sacked twice in the road loss. The Vikings on third down in the Land of 10,000 Lakes went 7 of 14 on third down, 1 of 1 on fourth down and held the ball for 37:22, while the Rams were 3 of 11 on third down (0 of 1 on fourth down) and kept the ball for 22:38.

Including contests played at old Tulane Stadium and in St. Louis, the Rams lead the series 40-32 and they have outscored the Saints 1,624-1,487. New Orleans won the last meeting between the clubs and that meeting took place last year in the Big Easy, as the home team took a 49-21 win (the Rams’ last win over the Saints came when they were in St. Louis in 2013 by a 27-16 final).

New Orleans led 28-21 in the Big Easy in the Week 12 contest at the half before they would pull away and score their final 21 points of the game in the second half unchallenged. Brees threw for 310 yards and four TDs, while Goff threw for 214 yards and three TDs but was sacked three times. Ingram rushed for 146 yards and a TD, as the Saints outrushed Los Angeles 209-69 and the Saints went 6 of 13 on third down tries (they were 2 of 2 on fourth down) and kept the ball for 35:56, while the Rams, who held the ball for 24:04, went 2 of 10 and 0 of 1 on third and fourth downs.

New Orleans’ 28-point win allowed them to cover the 7-point spread with ease and both teams covered the 45 1/2 over/under with 70 points. The Rams are favored by 2 1/2 in Tinsletown and the over/under’s 53 1/2. The Saints carry a 7-game win streak into the contest, while the Rams are looking to right their ship after their loss in the Twin Cities broke their 4-game win streak. Rams shock the world and cover the 2 1/2 on the West Coast.

Seattle (6-4) at San Francisco (1-9), 4:05 p.m. on FOx and DirecTV 713. An NFC West rematch takes place in wine country as Seattle makes the 839-mile trip down the Pacific Coast down I-5 for a divisional contest with the San Francisco 49ers at Levis’ Stadium.

Seattle took the defending NFC South and NFC champs Atlanta Falcons to the wire and dropped a 34-31 prime time decision at Century Link Field. Seattle trailed 24-17 at half and tried some trickeration before the intermission when Seahawks TE Justin Wilson was tackled by DT Grady Jarrett on a fake field goal with second seconds left before the intermission. Seattle would pull to within three points with three minutes left in regulation before Seahawks fans would have their hearts broken when Blair Walsh’s 52-yard field goal try that would have sent the contest into overtime fell short of the goal posts with 2 seconds left. Seattle outrushed the Falcons 136-89 and Matt Ryan threw for 195 yards and a pair of TDs to WR Mohamed Sanu and TE Levine Toilolo, while Seahawks QB Russell Wilson, who scored on a two-point conversion that pulled his team to within three with three minutes left in regulation, threw for 258 yards and a pair of TDs to TE Jimmy Graham and WR Doug Baldwin. Atlanta was 9 of 14 on third down conversions and kept the ball for 30:21, while Seattle was 5 of 12 on third down (1 of 2 on fourth down) and held the ball for 29:39.

San Francisco comes back to action after their bye and coming away 31-21 winners at home against Eli Manning and the New York Giants to pick up their first win of the season. The 49ers led 17-13 at the intermission two Sundays ago and then proceeded to outscore the Giants in the final 30 minutes of action 14-8 (the two teams played a scoreless thrird quarter). San Franciso outrushed the Giants 186-114 (49ers RB Carlos Hyde led all rushers with 98 yards) and 49ers QB C.J. Beatherd threw for 288 yards and a pair of TDs, while chipping in with a rushing TD of his own, while Manning threw for 273 yards and a pair of TDS. The 49ers were 8 of 12 on third down, 0 of 1 on fourth and kept the ball for 29 minutes. As for the Giants? They held the pigskin for 31 minutes, going 5 of 14, 3 of 3 on third and fourth downs.

They met in week two in the land of Grunge, Salmon and Starbucks and the Seahawks came away 12-9 winners at Century Link Field. Tied 6-6 at the intermission and trailing 9-6 in the fourth, Seattle took the lead for keeps when Wilson and WR Paul Richardson connected on a 9-yard TD strike with 7:06 left in regulation, as Seattle used a 10-play, 82-yard drive that consumed 4:30 of clock to take the lead back. Hyde ran for 124 yards in the first meeting, as San Francisco outrushed Seattle 159-131, while Wilson threw for 198 yards and the one TD. Seattle on third down? 8 of 19 (they were 1 of 1 on fourth down) and kept the ball for 36:58, while the 49ers went 2 of 12 on third down, keeping the football for 23:02.

In the week two contest in the Pacific Northwest, Seattle was favored by 13 1/2 but won by only 3 points. As for the 48 1/2 over/under? It was safe and sound, as both San Francisco and Seattle merged for only 21 points. Seattle’s favored again, this time by 6 1/2 and the over/under’s 42. Both humbers make sense. Seattle’s in the playoff hunt in the NFC West, while the 49ers would love nothing more than to ruin their plans. History has a way of repeating itself and this time, it favors the Seahawks. Seattle covers the 6 1/2 in wine country and takes the road win.

Jacksonville (7-3) at Arizona (4-6), 4:25 p.m. on CBS and DirecTV 714. The first-place Jacksonville Jaguars travel to the desert for a late afternoon contest with the Arizona Cardinals in Glendale.

Jacksonville gave Cleveland their 10th loss in a row in the 2017 season, coming away 19-7 winners at First Energy Stadium. Jacksonville led the Browns 10-7 at the break along the shores of Lake Erie and after a scoreless third quarter, the Jaguars would score their final 9 points of the contest unchallenged. The Jaguars, in the top spot in the AFC South, outrushed Cleveland 139-50, with rookie RB Leonard Fournette doing most of the work, tallying 111 yards of his own, while Jaguars QB Blake Bortles threw for 154 yards and a TD for the winners. The Jacksonville defense made life somewhat unbearable for Browns QB DeShone Kizer, who, threw for 179 yards while being sacked five times and picked off twice. The Browns on third down conversions went 3 of 13 (they were 0 of 1 on fourth) and kept the ball for 23:05, while the Jaguars were 6 of 20 on third down, 1 of 1 on fourth down and held the ball for 36:55.

Arizona let a 14-10 lead at Houston get away from them at NRG Stadium as the Texans pulled away with the 30-20 win in the Lone Star State. Rookie RB D’Onta Foreman tallied a pair of fourth quarter TDs to give the Texans the lead for keeps to take the win. Houston outrushed the Desert Angry Birds 134-48 and Tom Savage threw for 230 yards for the Texans, while Blaine Gabbard, who took over for Carson Palmer, threw for 257 yards and three TDs but was picked off twice. Houston on third down tries went 8 of 15 and kept the ball for 33:46, while Arizona kept it for 26:14, going 3 of 10 on third down, 0 of 1 on fourth.

The series tied at 2-2 and Jacksonville has outscored Arizona 99-85. Arizona has come away winners in the last two contests, with their last win coming in 2013 in the desert by a final of 27-14, while the Jaguars’ last win also came in the desert, with Jacksonville taking a 24-17 win in 2005. Jacksonville’s favored by 4 1/2 point and the over/under’s 38. Jacksonville’s looking to stay atop the AFC South mountain. Arizona’s trying to catch the Rams. Go with the cats. Jaguars prevail on the road and cvover the 4 1/2.

Denver (3-7) at Oakland (4-6), 4:25 p.m. on CBS and DirecTV 714. A pair of AFC West rivals, struggling to keep pace with Kansas City, meet in San Francisco bay as the Silver and Black host the Denver Broncos in a week four rematch.

A Denver rally in the Mile High City fell short as they fell to Cincinnati 20-17 last Sunday at Sports Authority Field at Mile High. The Bengals led 13-7 and had their largest lead of the contest at 10 points with 8:56 left in regulation when Andy Dalton and WR A.J. Green connected on an 18-yard TD toss. Denver would make it a 7-point contest with 5:05 left to play when Brock Osweiler and WR Demaryius Thomas connected on a 17-yard TD pass. Denver would have one last rally late in the contest but turned the ball over on downs, allowing the Bengals to run out the clock. Denver did outrush Cincy 112-49, while Osweiler threw for 254 yards and the lone TD pass (he was sacked three times with an intercepion) and Dalton threw for 154 yards and three TDs. Denver did quite well on third down, as they went 12 of 21 (they were 1 of 2 on fourth down) and the Broncos ruled time and kept the ball for 35:11, while Cincinnati went 24:49 in time of possession, going 7 of 15 on third down conversions.

Oakland and New Engalnd met in Mexico City and it was the Raiders dropping a 33-8 decision to New England last Sunday at Estadio Azteca. The Silver and Black trailed 17-0 at the half and 30-0 after three quarters before scoring their only TD in the fourth quarter when wR Amari Cooper and QB Derek Carr (237 yards) connected on a 9-yard TD toss with 11:43 left in the contest. Brady burned the Raiders for 339 yards and three TDs, while the Raiders managed to outrush New England 109-89. The Pats held the ball for 27:37, going 5 of 10 on third down tries South of the Border, while the Raiders went 7 of 15 on third down and ruled the clock, as they kept the ball for 32:23.

In the week four meeting at Sports Authority Field at Mile High, the Broncos led 10-7 at the break and then held off a late Oakland rally in the final minutes to take the 16-10 win. Denver outrushed Oakland 143-24 and Trevor Seimian threw for 179 yards and a TD, despite getting sacked four times, while Carr threw for 143 yards in the 6-point loss. Denver was 5 of 16 on third down conversions and kept the ball for 32:57, while the Raiders were 2 of 12 on third down (0 of 3 on fourth down) and kept the pigskin for 27:03.

In the week four contest, the Broncos covered the 2 1/2 points spread, winning by 6. As for the 46 1/2 over/under? Untouched. Both teams combined for 26 points. This time, the Raiders are favored by 5 and the over/under’s 43 1/2. whoever wins this one is a little closer to Kansas City in the AFC West, while the loser will sit and wonder what if. Take a pass on this one (unless you’re a fan of either team) and watch that “Grumpy Cat Movie” on Lifetime (he’s a cat but he’s funny as hell!). Broncos pull off the sweep and take the win on the road, covering the 5.

Green Bay (5-5) at Pittsburgh (8-2), 8:30 p.m. on NBC. The Sunday action for week 12 draws to a close in the Steel City as Pittsburgh and Ben Roethlisberger hosts Green Bay in prime time at Heinz Field.

Green Bay struggled against Baltimore and were shutout by the Ravens 23-0 at Lambeau Field last Sunday. The Packers trailed 6-0 at the intermission before Baltimore turned on the jets and scored their final 17 points of the game unchallenged. Green Bay did manage to outrush the Ravens 75-58 and Brett Hundley threw for 239 yards but threw three interceptions and was sacked six times, while Joe Flacco threw for 183 yards in the shutout. Green Bay was 4 of 15 on third down (1 of 4 on fourth down) in the land of cheese, beer and Bratwurst and kept the ball for 29:57, while the Ravens went 3 of 14 on third down but hit pay dirt in their only fourth down try, keeping the ball for 30:03.

Pittsburgh took Tennessee to task last week, as the Steelers were 40-17 winners last Thursday night at Heinz Field. The Steelers trailed 16-7 at the intermission before the Titans pulled to within 6 after three quarters of play. Pittsburgh then regained control of things, as they would score 17 fourth quarter points unchallenged. Pittsburgh outrushed Tennessee 65-52 and Mariota struggled in the contest, throwing four interceptions and being sacked five times, while throwing for 306 yards. For Pittsburgh, Ben Roethlisbeger threw for 299 yards and four TDs in the contest in Western Pennsylvania, connecting with WR Antoino Brown on threw of them. Tennessee was 5 of 13 on third down tries (1 of 2 on fourth down) and kept the ball for 28:20, while the Steelers ruled the clock, keeping the ball for 31:40, while going 4 of 12 on third down, 0 of 1 on fourth down tries.

The Steelers are favored by 14 and the over/under’s 41 1/2. The 41 1/2 we agree with. The 14 sounds a bit on the steep side. Green Bay has been in most of their contests and want to catch Minnesota to take control of the NFC North, while the Steelers look to stay on top of the AFC North mountain. Green Bay will make this closer than 14 but Pittsburgh prevails in the Steel City on Sunday night.

Houston (4-6) at Baltimore (5-5), 8:30 p.m. Monday on ESPN. Week 12 closes in Charm City as beef brisket meets crabcakes as Houston and Baltimore meet at M&T Bank Stadium in prime time. Both teams enter the Monday night contest with wins under their respective belts.

Houston erased a 14-10 deficit against Arizona last Sunday lead at at NRG Stadium as the Texans pulled away with the 30-20 win in the Lone Star State. Texans rookie RB D’Onta Foreman tallied a pair of fourth quarter TDs to give the home team the lead for keeps to take the win. Houston outrushed the Desert Angry Birds 134-48 and Tom Savage threw for 230 yards for the Texans, while Blaine Gabbard, who took over for Carson Palmer, threw for 257 yards and three TDs but was picked off twice. Houston on third down tries went 8 of 15 and kept the ball for 33:46, while Arizona kept it for 26:14, going 3 of 10 on third down, 0 of 1 on fourth.

The Ravens defeated the Packers 23-0 at Green Bay’s Lambeau Field last week, registering the team’s third shutout this season. Baltimore is the fifth team – and first since 2003 (New England) – over the past 30 years to record at least three shutouts in a single season. Three of the previous four teams to accomplish the feat during that span won the Super Bowl in that season – 1991 Washington, 2000 Baltimore and 2003 New England. The Ravens led 6-0 at the intermission before they turned on the jets and scored their final 17 points of the game unchallenged. Green Bay did manage to outrush the Ravens 75-58 and Brett Hundley threw for 239 yards but threw three interceptions and was sacked six times, while Joe Flacco threw for 183 yards in the shutout. Green Bay was 4 of 15 on third down (1 of 4 on fourth down) in the land of cheese, beer and Bratwurst and kept the ball for 29:57, while the Ravens went 3 of 14 on third down but hit pay dirt in their only fourth down try, keeping the ball for 30:03.

Baltimore leads the series 6-2 and the Ravens have outscored the Texans 199-166. Houston came away 25-13 winners in 2014 in the Lone Star State in their last meeting, while Baltimore’s last win in the series came in 2013 in Charm City by a final of 30-9. On Monday night, the Ravens are at the .500 mark at 11-11, while the Texans are 4-7. While this one is not exactly the best Monday night contest of the year, it’s worth the time to watch, even if it’s for one half. Baltimore’s favored by 7 and the over/under’s 38. Baltimore makes this interesting but Houston pulls the upset on the road and could very well cover the 7.