Archives for category: NFL Christmas Day

You know who your team was going to play.

You know where your team was going to play.

As far as the when, you had to be patient and wait.

Last Thursday night, your wait was over, thanks to the National Football League. The league announced its 17-week, 256-game regular-season schedule for 2017, which kicks off on Thursday night, September 7 in New England and concludes on Sunday, December 31 with 16 division games.

The season begins with the NFL’s annual primetime kickoff game. The opener on September 7 on NBC at 8:30 p.m. in Foxboro will spotlight the defending champion New England Patriots hosting the Kansas City Chiefs at Gillette Stadium.

Week 1 is a FOX national weekend with the key doubleheader game on Sunday, September 10 at 4:25 p.m. when salmon and Starbucks travels to the land of beer, cheese and bratwurst as Seattle takes on Green Bay at Lambeau Field. Week 3 is the first CBS national weekend with the key doubleheader game showcasing the Cincinnati Bengals facing the Packers at Lambeau Field.

NBC’s Sunday Night Football gets underway on September 10 when NFC East foes Dallas and the New York Giants square off at 8:30 p.m. in the Lone Star State at AT&T Stadium.

For those of you wondering if there are going to be two games on the first Monday of the season, the answer is yes. Kickoff Weekend concludes on Monday, September 11 with an ESPN Monday Night Football doubleheader. Minnesota hosts the New Orleans Saints at 7:10 p.m. in the first game followed by the Los Angeles Chargers visiting the Denver Broncos 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.

The league will have a select number of games that will be “cross-flexed,” moving between CBS and FOX to bring potentially under-distributed games to wider audiences. Some of those contests were announced as well, including the Seahawks at the Giants in the Meadowlands at 4:25 p.m. on CBS in Week 7 and the Vikings traveling to the Tar Heel State for a meeting with Cam Newton and the Carolina Panthers at 1 p.m. on CBS in Week 14. Other “cross-flexed” games will be decided during the season.

The regular season will conclude with Week 17 on Sunday, December 31. For the eighth consecutive year, all 16 games scheduled for Week 17 are division contests, enhancing the potential for more games with playoff ramifications.

Other contests include…

In Week 2, the Atlanta Falcons will open their new home – Mercedes-Benz Stadium – on Sunday, September 17 in primetime  at 8:30 p.m. on NBC when they host the Packers in a rematch of last season’s NFC Championship Game. Earlier that day, the Chargers will make their return to Los Angeles as they host the Miami Dolphins at the StubHub Center at 4:05 p.m. on CBS.

The Patriots will host the Falcons in Week 7 on Sunday night, October 22 at 8:30 p.m. on NBC in a rematch of Super Bowl LI, the first Super Bowl in NFL history to go into overtime.

Will there be football on Thanksgiving?

Is the Pope Catholic?

Thanksgiving will feature a tripleheader on Thursday, November 23 and yes, the Lions and Cowboys are at home. The first game will be an NFC North contest in the Motor City as Detroit hosts the Minnesota Vikings at Ford Field at 12:30 p.m. on FOX. As for Dallas, they are the late afternoon contest in the Lone Star State when they host the Los Angeles Chargers at 4:30 p.m. on CBS and the Turkey Day trifecta concludes in Landover with an NFC East contest as Eli Manning, Odell Beckham Jr. and the New York Giants make their way to Landover in prime time to face the Washington Redskins at 8:30 p.m. on NBC.

In Week 16, NBC’s Sunday Night Football game as NFC North foe Minnesota and Green Bay meet at Lambeau as that contest will move to Saturday night, December 23 at 8:30 p.m., due to Christmas Eve and is not subject to flexible scheduling. Christmas Day will feature a doubleheader on Monday, December 25 with the Houston Texans hosting the Pittsburgh Steelers at 4:30 p.m. on NBC/NFLN/Amazon Prime in the first game and Oakland traveling to the City of Brotherly Love, visiting the Philadelphia Eagles at 8:30 p.m. on ESPN in primetime.

There are contests with an international flavor, so break out the fish and chips and tequila! The NFL’s international slate includes four games in London – the first time the league will play four games in the United Kingdom and one in Mexico City. On Sunday, September 24, the Jacksonville Jaguars will host the Baltimore Ravens at London’s Wembley Stadium at 9:30 a.m. with distribution to be announced at a later date(set those VCRs NOW!).

The next weekend, on Sunday, October 1, Jacksonville’s neighbor to the South, the Miami Dolphins, will host Drew Brees and the New Orleans Saints at Wembley at 9:30 a.m. on FOX, In Week 7, it’s an NFC West matchup in Merry Ole England as the Los Angeles Rams host the Arizona Cardinals at Twickenham Stadium on Sunday, October 22 at 1 p.m. on FOX. The following week, the Cleveland Browns will host the Vikings at Twickenham on Sunday, October 29 at 9:30 a.m. on NFLN and the league heads back South of the Border as the Oakland Raiders take on Tom Brady and the Pats at 4:25 p.m. on CBS on Sunday, November 19 at Estadio Azteca.

The NFL has partnered with Amazon Prime this season and will once again use a “Tri-Cast” distribution model of broadcast (CBS/NBC), cable (NFL Network) and digital (Amazon Prime Video) for 10 Thursday Night Football games and a Christmas Day contest. CBS and NBC will each broadcast five Thursday Night Football games which will be simulcast on NFL Network and streamed to Amazon Prime members worldwide. NBC will also broadcast the Christmas Day game. CBS will start in Week 4 on Thursday, September 28 when the Packers host the Chicago Bears. NBC’s Tri-Cast package begins in Week 10 on Thursday, November 9 when the  Seahawks visit the Arizona Cardinals. Additionally, NFL Network will also  exclusively televise a seven-game schedule comprised of three Thursday Night Football games, three late-season Saturday contests and a Sunday morning London matchup.

The NFL’s 32 teams will each play 16 games over 17 weeks. Byes will begin in Week 5 and end in Week 11.

“Flexible scheduling” will be used in Weeks 10-15 and 17. Additionally, in Weeks 5-9, flexible scheduling may be used in no more than two weeks. In Weeks 5-15, 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. Flexible scheduling will not be applied to games airing on Thursday, Saturday or Monday nights. A flexible scheduling move would be announced at least 12 days before the game. For Week 17, the Sunday night game will be announced no later than six days prior to December 31. 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 prime time.

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 6-7. 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 13-14. The AFC and NFC Championship Games will be played on Sunday, January 21. The winners meet two weeks later on Sunday, February 4 in Super Bowl LII at Minnesota’s U.S. Bank Stadium  on NBC.

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.

2017 NFL SCHEDULE (All Times Eastern and subject to change)

WEEK 1 (Byes: NONE)

Thursday, September 7
Kansas City at New England, 8:30 p.m. on NBC

Sunday, September 10
ATLANTA at Chicago, 1 p.m. on FOX
New York Jets at Buffalo, 1 p.m. on CBS
Baltimore at Cincinnati, 1 p.m. on CBS
Pittsburgh at Cleveland, 1 p.m. on CBS
Arizona at Detroit, 1 p.m. on FOX
Jacksonville at Houston, 1 p.m. on CBS
Tampa Bay at Miami, 1 p.m. on FOX
Oakland at Tennessee, 1 p.m. on CBS
Philadelphia at Washington, 1 p.m. on FOX
Indianapolis at Los Angeles Rams, 4:05 p.m. on CBS
Seattle at Green Bay, 4:25 p.m. on FOX
Carolina at San Francisco, 4:25 p.m. on FOX
New York Giants at Dallas, 8:30 p.m. on NBC

Monday, September 11
New Orleans at Minnesota, 7:10 p.m. on ESPN
Los Angeles Chargers at Denver, 10:20 p.m. on ESPN

WEEK 2 (Byes: NONE)

Thursday, September 14, 2017
Houston at Cincinnati, 8:25 p.m. on NFLN

Sunday, September 17, 2017
Green Bay at ATLANTA, 8:30 p.m. on NBC
Cleveland at Baltimore, 1 p.m. on CBS
Buffalo at Carolina, 1 p.m. on CBS
Arizona at Indianapolis, 1 p.m. on FOX
Tennessee at Jacksonville, 1 p.m. on CBS
Philadelphia at Kansas City, 1 p.m. on FOX
New England at New Orleans, 1 p.m. on CBS
Minnesota at Pittsburgh, 1 p.m. on CBS
Chicago at Tampa Bay, 1 p.m. on FOX
Miami at Los Angeles Chargers, 4:05 p.m. on CBS
New York Jets at Oakland, 4:05 p.m. on CBS
Dallas at Denver, 4:25 p.m. on FOX
Washington at Los Angeles Rams, 4:25 p.m. on FOX
San Francisco at Seattle, 4:25 p.m. on FOX

Monday, September 18, 2017
Detroit at New York Giants, 8:30 p.m. on ESPN

WEEK 3 (Byes: NONE)

Thursday, September 21
Los Angeles Rams at San Francisco, 8:25 p.m. on NFLN

Sunday, September 24
ATLANTA at Detroit, 1 p.m. on FOX
Baltimore at Jacksonville, 9:30 a.m. Eastern (2:30 p.m. in London), TBD
Denver at Buffalo, 1 p.m. on CBS
New Orleans at Carolina, 1 p.m. on FOX
Pittsburgh at Chicago, 1 p.m. on CBS
Cleveland at Indianapolis, 1 p.m. on CBS
Tampa Bay at Minnesota, 1 p.m. on FOX
Houston at New England, 1 p.m. on CBS
Miami at New York Jets, 1 p.m. on CBS
New York Giants at Philadelphia, 1 p.m. on FOX
Seattle at Tennessee, 4:05 p.m. on FOX
Cincinnati at Green Bay, 4:25 p.m. on CBS
Kansas City at Los Angeles Chargers, 4:25 p.m. on CBS
Oakland at Washington, 8:30 p.m. on NBC

Monday, September 25
Dallas at Arizona, 8:30 p.m. on ESPN

WEEK 4 (Byes: NONE)

Thursday, September 28
Chicago at Green Bay, 8:25 p.m. on CBS/NFLN/Amazon

Sunday, October 1
Buffalo at ATLANTA, 1 p.m. on CBS
New Orleans at Miami, 9:30 p.m. Eastern (2:30 p.m. in London) on FOX
Pittsburgh at Baltimore, 1 p.m on CBS
Cincinnati at Cleveland, 1 p.m. on CBS
Los Angeles Rams at Dallas, 1 p.m. on FOX
Tennessee at Houston, 1 p.m. on CBS
Detroit at Minnesota, 1 p.m. on FOX
Carolina at New England, 1 p.m. on FOX
Jacksonville at New York Jets, 1 p.m. on CBS
San Francisco at Arizona, 4:05 p.m. on FOX
Philadelphia at Los Angeles Chargers, 4:05 p.m. on FOX
New York Giants at Tampa Bay, 4:25 p.m. on FOX
Oakland at Denver, 4:25 p.m. on CBS
Indianapolis at Seattle, 8:30 p.m. on NBC

Monday, October 2
Washington at Kansas City, 8:30 p.m. on ESPN

WEEK 5 (Byes: ATLANTA, Denver, New Orleans and Washington)

Thursday, October 5
New England at Tampa Bay, 8:25 p.m. on CBS/NFLN/Amazon

Sunday, October 8

Buffalo at Cincinnati, 1 p.m. on CBS
New York Jets at Cleveland, 1 p.m. on FOX
Carolina at Detroit, 1 p.m. on FOX
San Francisco at Indianapolis, 1 p.m. on FOX
Tennessee at Miami, 1 p.m. on CBS
Los Angeles Chargers at New York Giants, 1 p.m. on CBS
Arizona at Philadelphia, 1 p.m. on FOX
Jacksonville at Pittsburgh, 1 p.m. on CBS
Seattle at Los Angeles Rams, 4:05 p.m. on FOX
Baltimore at Oakland, 4:05 p.m. on CBS
Green Bay at Dallas, 4:25 p.m. on FOX
Kansas City at Houston, 8:30 p.m. on NBC (subject to change)

Monday, October 9
Minnesota at Chicago, 8:30 p.m. on ESPN

WEEK 6 (Byes: Buffalo, Cincinnati, Dallas and Seattle)

Thursday, October 12
Philadelphia at Carolina, 8:25 p.m. on CBS/NFLN/Amazon

Sunday, October 15
Miami at ATLANTA, 1 p.m. on CBS
Chicago at Baltimore, 1 p.m. on FOX
Cleveland at Houston, 1 p.m. on CBS
Green Bay at Minnesota, 1 p.m. on FOX
Detroit at New Orleans, 1 p.m. on FOX
New England  at New York Jets, 1 p.m. on CBS
San Francisco at Washington, 1 p.m. on FOX
Tampa Bay at Arizona, 4:05 p.m. on FOX
Los Angeles Rams at Jacksonville, 4:05 p.m. on FOX
Pittsburgh at Kansas City, 4:25 p.m. on CBS
Los Angeles Chargers at Oakland, 4:25 p.m. on CBS
New York Giants at Denver, 8:30 p.m. on NBC (subject to change)

Monday, October 16
Indianapolis at Tennessee, 8:30 p.m. on ESPN

WEEK 7 (Byes: Detroit and Houston)

Thursday, October 19
Kansas City at Oakland, 8:25 p.m. on CBS/NFLN/Amazon

Sunday, October 22
ATLANTA at New England, 8:30 p.m. on NBC (subject to change)

Tampa Bay at Buffalo, 1 p.m. on FOX
Carolina at Chicago, 1 p.m. on FOX
Tennessee at Cleveland, 1 p.m. on CBS
New Orleans at Green Bay, 1 p.m. on FOX
Jacksonville at Indianapolis, 1 p.m. on CBS
Arizona at Los Angeles Rams, 1 p.m. Eastern (6 p.m. in London) on FOX
New York Jets at Miami, 1 p.m. on CBS
Baltimore at Minnesota, 1 p.m. on CBS
Cincinnati at Pittsburgh, 1 p.m. on CBS
Dallas at San Francisco, 4:05 p.m. on FOX
Denver at Los Angeles Chargers, 4:25 p.m. on CBS
Seattle at New York Giants, 4:25 p.m. on FOX

Monday, October 23
Washington at Philadelphia, 8:30 p.m. on ESPN

WEEK 8 (Byes: Arizona, Green Bay, Jacksonville, Los Angeles Rams, New York Giants and Tennessee)

Thursday, October 26
Miami at Baltimore, 8:25 p.m. on CBS/NFLN/Amazon

Sunday, October 29
ATLANTA at New York Jets, 1 p.m. on FOX
Minnesota at Cleveland, 9:30 a.m. Eastern (1:30 p.m. in London) on NFLN
Oakland at Buffalo, 1 p.m. on CBS
Indianapolis at Cincinnati, 1 p.m. on CBS
Los Angeles Chargers at New England, 1 p.m. on CBS
Chicago at New Orleans, 1 p.m. on FOX
San Francisco at Philadelphia, 1 p.m. on FOX
Carolina at Tampa Bay, 1 p.m. on FOX
Houston at Seattle, 4:05 p.m. on CBS
Dallas at Washington, 4:25 p.m. on FOX
Pittsburgh at Detroit, 8:30 p.m. on NBC (subject to change)

Monday, October 30
Denver at Kansas City, 8:30 p.m. on ESPN

WEEK 9 (Byes: Chicago, Cleveland, Los Angeles Chargers, Minnesota, New England and Pittsburgh)

Thursday, November 2
Buffalo at New York Jets, 8:25 p.m. on NFLN

Sunday, November 5
ATLANTA at Carolina, 1 p.m. on FOX
Indianapolis at Houston, 1 p.m. on CBS
Cincinnati at Jacksonville, 1 p.m. on CBS
Tampa Bay at New Orleans, 1 p.m. on FOX
Los Angeles Rams at New York Giants, 1 p.m. on FOX
Denver at Philadelphia, 1 p.m. on CBS
Baltimore at Tennessee, 1 p.m. on CBS
rizona at San Francisco, 4:05 p.m. on FOX
Washington at Seattle, 4:05 p.m. on FOX
Kansas City at Dallas, 4:25 p.m. on CBS
Oakland at Miami, 8:30 p.m. on NBC (subject to change)

Monday, November 6
Detroit at Green Bay, 8:30 p.m. on ESPN

WEEK 10 (Byes: Baltimore, Kansas City, Oakland and Philadelphia)

Thursday, November 9
Seattle at Arizona, 8:25 p.m. on NBC/NFLN/Amazon

Sunday, November 12
Dallas at ATLANTA, 4:25 p.m. on FOX
New Orleans at Buffalo, 1 p.m. on FOX
Green Bay at Chicago, 1 p.m. on FOX
Cleveland at Detroit, 1 p.m. on CBS
Pittsburgh at Indianapolis, 1 p.m. on CBS
Los Angeles Chargers at Jacksonville, 1 p.m. on cBS
New York Jets at Tampa Bay, 1 p.m. on CBS
Cincinnati at Tennessee, 1 p.m. on FOX
Minnesota at Washington, 1 p.m. on FOX
Houston at Los Angeles Rams, 4:05 p.m. on CBS
New York Giants at San Francisco, 4:25 p.m. on FOX
New England at Denver, 8:30 p.m. on NBC (subject to change)

Monday, November 13
Miami at Carolina, 8:30 p.m. on ESPN

WEEK 11 (Byes: Carolina, Indianapolis, Miami, New York Jets, San Francisco and Tampa Bay)

Thursday, November 16
Tennessee at Pittsburgh, 8:25 p.m. on NBC/NFLN/Amazon

Sunday, November 19
Detroit at Chicago, 1 p.m. on FOX
Jacksonville at Cleveland, 1 p.m. on CBS
Baltimore at Green Bay, 1 p.m. on CBS
Arizona at Houston, 1 p.m. on FOX
Los Angeles Rams at Minnesota, 1 p.m. on FOX
Washington at New Orleans, 1 p.m. on FOX
Kansas City at New York Giants on CBS
Buffalo at Los Angeles Chargers, 1:05 p.m. on FOX
Cincinnati at Denver, 4:25 p.m. on CBS
New England at Oakland in Mexico City, 4:25 p.m. on CBS
Philadelphia Eagles at Dallas, 8:30 p.m. on NBC (subject to change)

Monday, November 20, 2017
ATLANTA at Seattle, 8:30 p.m. on ESPN

WEEK 12 (Byes: NONE)

Thursday, November 23
Minnesota at Detroit, 12:30 p.m. on FOX
Los Angeles Chargers at Dallas, 4:30 p.m. on CBS
New York Giants at Washington, 8:30 p.m. on NBC

Sunday, November 26
Tampa Bay at ATLANTA, 1 p.m. on FOX
Cleveland at Cincinnati, 1 p.m. on CBS
Tennessee at Indianapolis, 1 p.m. on CBS
Buffalo at Kansas City, 1 p.m. on CBs
Miami at New England, 1 p.m. on CBS
Carolina at New York Jets, 1 p.m. on FOX
Chicago at Philadelphia, 1 p.m. on FOX
New Orleans at Los Angeles Rams, 4:05 p.m. on FOX
Seattle at San Francisco, 4:05 p.m. on FOX
Jacksonville at Arizona, 4:25 p.m. on CBS
Denver at Oakland, 4:25 p.m. on CBS
Green Bay at Pittsburgh, 8:30 p.m. on NBC (subject to change)

Monday, November 27
Houston at Baltimore, 8:30 p.m. on ESPN

WEEK 13 (Byes: NONE)

Thursday, November 30
Washington at Dallas, 8:25 p.m. on NBC/NFLN/Amazon

Sunday, December 3
Minnesota at ATLANTA, 1 p.m. on FOX
Detroit at Baltimore, 1 p.m. on FOX
New England at Buffalo, 1 p.m. on CBS
San Francisco at Chicago, 1 p.m. on CBS
Tampa Bay at Green Bay, 1 p.m. on FOX
Indianapolis at Jacksonville, 1 p.m. on CBS
Denver at Miami, 1 p.m. on CBS
Carolina at New Orleans, 1 p.m. on FOX
Kansas City at New York Jets, 1 p.m. on CBS
Houston at Tennessee, 1 p.m. on CBS
Cleveland at Los Angeles Chargers, 4:05 p.m. on CBS
Los Angeles Rams at Arizona, 4:25 p.m. on FOX
New York Giants at Oakland, 4:25 p.m. on FOX
Philadelphia at Seattle, 8:30 p.m. on NBC (subject to change)

Monday, December 4
Pittsburgh at Cincinnati, 8:30 p.m. on ESPN

WEEK 14 (Byes: NONE)

Thursday, December 7
New Orleans Saints at ATLANTA, 8:25 p.m. on NBC/NFLN/Amazon

Sunday, December 10
Indianapolis at Buffalo, 1 p.m. on CBS
Minnesota at Carolina, 1 p.m. on CBS
Chicago at Cincinnati, 1 p.m. on FOX
Green Bay at Cleveland, 1 p.m. on FOX
San Francisco at Houston, 1 p.m. on FOX
Seattle at Jacksonville, 1 p.m. on FOX
Oakland at Kansas City, 1 p.m. on CBS
Detroit at Tampa Bay, 1 p.m. on FOX
Tennessee at Arizona, 4:05 p.m. on CBS
New York Jets at Denver, 4:05 p.m. on CBs
Washington at Los Angeles Chargers, 4:05 p.m. on CBS
Philadelphia at Los Angeles Rams, 4:25 p.m. on FOX
Dallas at New York Giants, 4:@5 p.m. on FOX
Baltimore at Pittsburgh, 8:30 p.m. on NBC (subject to change)

Monday, December 11
New England at Miami, 8:30 p.m. on ESPN

WEEK 15 (Byes: NONE)

Thursday, December 14
Denver at Indianapolis, 8:25 p.m. on NBC/NFLN/Amazon

Saturday, December 16
Chicago at Detroit, 4:30 p.m. on NFLN
Los Angeles Chargers at Kansas City, 8:25 p.m. on NFLN

Sunday, December 17
Miami at Buffalo, 1 p.m. on CBS
Green Bay at Carolina, 1 p.m. on FOX
Baltimore at Cleveland, 1 p.m. on cBS
Houston at Jacksonville, 1 p.m. on CBS
Cincinnati at Minnesota, 1 p.m. on CBS
New York Jets at New Orleans, 1 p.m. on CBS
Philadelphia at New York Giants, 1 p.m. on FOX
Arizona at Washington, 1 p.m. on FOX
Los Angeles Rams at Seattle, 4:05 p.m. on FOX
New England at Pittsburgh, 4:25 p.m. on CBs
Tennessee at San Francisco, 4:25 p.m. on CBS
Dallas at Oakland, 8:30 p.m. on NBC (subject to change)

Monday, December 18
ATLANTA at Tampa Bay, 8:30 p.m. on ESPN

WEEK 16 (Byes: NONE)

Saturday, December 23
Indianapolis Colts at Baltimore, 4:30 p.m. on NFLN
Minnesota at Green Bay, 8:30 p.m. on NBC

Sunday, December 24
ATLANTA at New Orleans, 1 p.m. on FOX
Tampa Bay at Carolina, 1 p.m. on FOX
Cleveland at Chicago, 1 p.m. on CBS
Detroit at Cincinnati, 1 p.m. on FOx
Miami at Kansas City, 1 p.m. on CBS
Buffalo at New England, 1 p.m. on CBS
Los Angeles Chargers at New York Jets, 1 p.m. on CBS
Los Angeles Rams at Tennessee, 1 p.m. on FOX
Denver at Washington, 1 p.m. on CBS
Jacksonville at San Francisco, 4:05 p.m. on CBS
New York Giants at Arizona, 4:25 p.m. on FOX
Seattle at Dallas, 4:25 p.m. on FOX

Monday, December 25
Pittsburgh at Houston, 4:30 p.m. on NBC/NFLN/Amazon
Oakland at Philadelphia, 8:30 p.m. on ESPN

WEEK 17 (Byes: NONE)

Sunday, December 31
Carolina at ATLANTA, 1 p.m. on FOX
Cincinnati at Baltimore, 1 p.m. on CBS
Green Bay at Detroit, 1 p.m. on FOX
Houston at Indianapolis, 1 p.m. on CBS
Buffalo at Miami, 1 p.m. on CBS
Chicago at Minnesota, 1 p.m. on FOX
New York Jets at New England, 1 p.m. on CBS
Washington at New York Giants, 1 p.m. on FOX
Dallas at Philadelphia, 1 p.m. on FOX
Cleveland at Pittsburgh, 1 p.m. on CBS
New Orleans at Tampa Bay, 1 p.m. on FOX
Jacksonville at Tennessee, 1 p.m. on CBS
Kansas City at Denver, 4:25 p.m. on CBS
Oakland at Los Angeles Chargers, 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
GAME TBD, 8:30 p.m. on NBC

 

 

Saturday, Sunday and Monday Broadcast Information (all times Eastern)

Atlanta at Carolina, 1 p.m. on FOX and DirecTV 709: Thom Brennaman, Charles Davis, Chris Spielman, Peter Schrager (Field reporter). SIRIUS: 132 (Atlanta), 81 (Carolina). XM: 382 (Atlanta), 225 (Carolina).

Miami at Buffalo, 1 p.m. on CBS and DirecTV 705: Greg Gumbel, Trent Green, Jamie Erdahl (Field reporter). SIRIUS: 134 (Miami), 113 (Buffalo). XM: 380 (Miami), 230 (Buffalo).

Washington at Chicago, 1 p.m. on FOX and DirecTV 710: Dick Stockton, David Diehl, Kristina Pink (Field reporter). SIRIUS: 135 (Washington), 93 (Chicago). XM: 384 (Washington), 227 (Chicago).

San Diego at Cleveland, 1 p.m. on CBS and DirecTV 706: Spero Dedes, Solomon Wilcots. SIRIUS: 138 (San Diego), 84 (Cleveland). XM: 383 (San Diego), 228 (Cleveland).

Minnesota at Green Bay, 1 p.m. on FOX and DirecTV 711: Joe Buck, Troy Aikman, Erin Andrews (Field reporter). Westwood One: Kevin Lee, Al Groh. SIRIUS: 136 (Minnesota), 82 (Green Bay). XM: 381 (Minnesota), 82 (Green Bay).

Tennessee at Jacksonville, 1 p.m. on CBS and DirecTV 707: Andrew Catalon, Steve Tasker, Steve Beuerlein (Field reporter). SIRIUS: 145 (Tennessee), 108 (Jacksonville). XM: 386 (Tennessee), 229 (Jacksonville).

New York Jets at New England, 1 p.m. on CBS and DirecTV 708: Ian Eagle, Dan Fouts, Evan Washburn (Field reporter). SIRIUS: 133 (New York Jets), 83 (New England). XM: 385 (New York Jets), 226 (New England).

Indianapolis at Oakland, 4:05 p.m. on CBS and DirecTV 713: Jim Nantz, Phil Simms, Tracy Wolfson (Field reporter). SIRIUS: 145 (Indianapolis), 82 (Oakland). XM: 231 (Indianapolis), 82 (Oakland).

San Francisco at Los Angeles, 4:25 p.m. on FOX and DirecTV 714: Chris Myers, Ronde Barber, Jennifer Hale (Field reporter). SIRIUS: 83 (San Francisco), 81 (Los Angeles). XM: 226 (San Francisco), 225 (Los Angeles).

Tampa Bay at New Orleans, 4:25 p.m. on FOX and DirecTV 715: Kenny Albert, Daryl Johnston, Laura Okmin (Field reporter). SIRIUS: 137 (Tampa Bay), 108 (New Orleans). XM: 232 (Tampa Bay), 229 (New Orleans).

Arizona at Seattle, 4:25 p.m. on FOX and DirecTV 716: Kevin Burkhardt, John Lynch, Pam Oliver (Field reporter). Westwood One: John Sadak, Derek Rackley. SIRIUS: 93 (Arizona), 84 (Seattle). XM: 227 (Arizona), 228 (Seattle).

Cincinnati at Houston, 8:25 p.m. on NFL Network: Kevin Harlan, Rich Gannon, Stacey Dales (Field reporter). Westwood One: Dan Miller, James Lofton. SIRIUS: 88 (WestWood1), 83 (Cincinnati), 81 (Houston). XM: 88 (WestWood1), 226 (Cincinnati), 225 (Houston).

Baltimore at Pittsburgh, 4:30 p.m. on NFL Network: Mike Tirico, Doug Flutie, Heather Cox (Field reporter). Westwood One: Ian Eagle, Ross Tucker, Hub Arkush (Field reporter). SIRIUS: 88 (WestWood1), 83 (Baltimore), 82 (Pittsburgh). XM: 88 (WestWood1), 225 (Baltimore), 82 (Pittsburgh)

Denver at Kansas City, 8:30 p.m. on NBC: Al Michaels, Cris Collinsworth, Michele Tafoya (Field reporter). Westwood One: Kevin Harlan, James Lofton, Scott Kaplan (Field reporter). SIRIUS: 83 (Denver), 82 (Kansas City). XM: 225 (Denver), 82 (Kansas City).

Detroit at Dallas, 8:30 p.m. Monday on ESPN: Sean McDonough, Jon Gruden, Lisa Salters (Field reporter). Westwood One: Kevin Kugler, Kurt Warner, Laura Okmin (Field reporter). SIRIUS: 88 (WestWood1), 83 (Detroit), 81 (Dalllas). XM: 88 (WestWood1), 226 (Detroit), 225 (Dallas).

Saturday, Sunday and Monday Officials
ATLANTA at Carolina, 1 p.m. – Bill Vinovich
Miami at Buffalo, 1 p.m. – Craig Wrolstad
Washington at Chicago, 1 p.m. – Brad Allen
San Diego at Cleveland, 1 p.m. – Walt Coleman
Minnesota at Green Bay, 1 p.m. – Jeff Triplette
Tennessee at Jacksonville, 1 p.m. – Pete Morelli
New York Jets at New England, 1 p.m. – Gene Steratore
Indianapolis at Oakland, 4:05 p.m. – Ed Hochuli
San Francisco at Los Angeles, 4:25 p.m. – Walt Anderson
Tampa Bay at New Orleans, 4:25 p.m. – Jerome Boger
Arizona at Seattle, 4:25 p.m. – Ronald Torbert
Cincinnati at Houston, 8:25 p.m. – Carl Cheffers
Baltimore at Pittsburgh, 4:30 p.m. on Sunday – John Parry
Denver at Kansas City, 8:30 p.m. on Sunday – Tony Corrente
Detroit at Dallas, 8:30 p.m. on Monday – John Hussey

Saturday, Sunday and Monday Odds

Saturday’s Games
Favorite                         Spread     Underdog                O/U
Atlanta                          –  3 1/2   CAROLINA                53
Washington                       –  3 1/2   CHICAGO                 47
BUFFALO                          –  3 1/2   Miami                   42
GREEN BAY                        –  6 1/2   Minnesota               43
NEW ENGLAND                      – 16 1/2   New York Jets           44
Tennessee                        –  5       JACKSONVILLE            44
San Diego                        –  6       CLEVELAND               44
OAKLAND                          –  3 1/2   Indianapolis            53
NEW ORLEANS                      –  3       Tampa Bay               53
LOS ANGELES                      –  4       San Francisco           40
SEATTLE                          –  8 1/2   Arizona                 43 1/2
HOUSTON                          –  2       Cincinnati              41

Sunday’s Games
Favorite                         Spread     Underdog                O/U
PITTSBURGH                       –  5       Baltimore               44
KANSAS CITY                      –  4       Denver                  37 1/2

Monday’s Game
Favorite                         Spread     Underdog                O/U
DALLAS                           –  7 1/2   Detroit                 43

Saturday, Sunday and Monday Injury Report

ATLANTA at Carolina, 1 p.m.

Atlanta
OUT: DT De’Vondre Campbell (Concussion), TE Austin Hooper (Knee)

Carolina
OUT: DE Ryan Delaire (Knee)

Miami at Buffalo, 1 p.m.

Miami
OUT: QB Ryan Tannehill (Knee)
DOUBTFUL: LB Jelani Jenkins (Knee), CB Byron Maxwell (Ankle)
QUESTIONABLE: S Isa Abdul-Quddus (Ankle), LB Kristian Alonso (Hamstring), T Jermon Bushrod (Shoulder), CB Bobby McCain (Knee), DE Mario Williams (Ankle)

Buffalo
OUT: LB Lerentee McCray (Concussion)
DOUBTFUL: T Cordy Glenn (Back)
QUESTIONABLE: LB Preston Brown (Foot), TE Charles Clay (Knee), RB Jerome Felton (Foot), G John Miller (Hip), WR Sammy Watikns (Foot), DT Kyle Williams (Back), DT Jerel Worthy (Shoulder)

Washington at Chicago, 1 p.m.

Washington
OUT: S Su’a Cravens S (Arm), CB Quinton Dunbar (Concussion)
QUESTIONABLE: TE Jordan Reed (Shoulder), DE Christopher Baker (Ankle), LB William Compton (Knee), LB Terence Garvin (Illness), LB Patrick Kerrigan (Elbow), LB Martrell Spaight (Shoulder)

Chicago
OUT: DT Eddie Goldman (Ankle), G Eric Kush (Concussion)
QUESTIONABLE: CB Bryce Callahan (Knee), RB Ka’Deem Carey (Shoulder), QB David Fales (Thumb), CB Cre’von LeBlanc (Knee),
DE Cornelius Washington (Back), LB Willie Young (Knee)

San Diego at Cleveland, 1 p.m.

San Diego
OUT: RB Melvin Gordon (Hip)
DOUBTFUL: CB Craig Mager (Shoulder)
QUESTIONABLE: T King Dunlap (Knee), G Orlando Franklin (Illness), WR Jeremy Butler (Ankle)

Cleveland
QUESTIONABLE: LB Dominique Alexander (Abdomen), TE Randall Telfer (Ankle)

Minnesota at Green Bay, 1 p.m.

Minnesota
OUT: G Brandon Fusco (Concussion), RB Adrian Peterson (Knee), WR Laquon Treadwell (Ankle), RB Zachary Line (Concussion)
QUESTIONABLE: WR Stefon Diggs (Hip), S Harrison Smith (Ankle)

Green Bay
OUT: LB Jayrone Elliott (Hand), RB James Starks (Concussion)
QUESTIONABLE: WR Randall Cobb (Ankle), LB Nicholas Perry (Hand), CB Damarious Randall (Shoulder), C Joseph Tretter (Knee)

Tennessee at Jacksonville, 1 p.m.

Tennessee
OUT: CB Jason McCourty (Chest)
QUESTIONABLE: LB Sean Spence (Ankle)

Jacksonville
OUT: WR Arrelious Benn (Concussion), DT Jordan Hill (Calf), WR Allen Hurns (Hamstring), LB Sean Porter (Hamstring), RB
Denard Robinson (Ankle), WR Neal Sterling (Concussion)
New York Jets at New England, 1 p.m.

New York Jets
OUT: LB Lorenzo Mauldin (Ankle), DT Stephen McLendon (Hamstring)
DOUBTFUL: RB Matt Forte (Knee)
QUESTIONABLE: WR Brandon Marshall (Shoulder), RB Khiry Robinson (Leg), DE Muhammad Wilkerson (Ankle)

New England
OUT: WR Danny Amendola (Ankle)
QUESTIONABLE: LB Qualin Hightower (Knee), TE Martellus Bennett (Ankle), QB Tom Brady (Thigh), S Jordan Richards (Knee), WR Matt Slater (Foot)

Tampa Bay at New Orleans, 4:25 p.m.

Tampa Bay
OUT: T Gosder Cherilus (Groin), T Demar Dotson (Concussion), DE William Gholston (Elbow)
QUESTIONABLE: DT Gerald McCoy (Foot)

New Orleans
OUT: CB Delvin Breaux (Shoulder)
QUESTIONABLE: LB Dannell Ellerbe (Foot), RB John Kuhn (Hip), LB Craig Robertson (Shoulder), C Max Unger (Foot)

Indianapolis at Oakland, 4:05 p.m.

Indianapolis
OUT: LB Chris Carter (Shoulder)
QUESTIONABLE: CB Rashaan Melvin (Knee), T Joseph Reitz (Back)

Oakland
OUT: S Karl Joseph (Toe), DT Stacy McGee (Ankle), LB Shilique Calhoun (Knee)
QUESTIONABLE: WR Amari Cooper (Shoulder), WR Michael Crabtree (Finger), G Kelechi Osemele (Ankle), LB Perry Riley (Hamstring), LB Malcom Smith (Hamstring)

San Francisco at Los Angeles, 4:25 p.m.

San Francisco
DOUBTFUL: CB Dontae Johnson (Groin), T Joe Staley (Hamstring)
QUESTIONBLE: C Marcus Martin (Ankle), DT Glenn Dorsey (Knee)

Los Angeles
DOUBTFUL: CB Lamarcus Joyner (Ankle), S Maurice Alexander (Concussion), WR Michael Thomas (Hip)
QUESTIONABLE: WR Bradley Marquez (Knee)

Arizona at Seattle, 4:25 p.m.

Arizona
OUT: CB Marcus Cooper (Back), T DeMarcus Humphries (Concussion)
QUESTIONABLE: CB Brandon Williams (Back), WR John Brown (Illness)

Seattle
OUT: RB C.J. Prosise (Shoulder)

Cincinnati at Houston, 8:25 p.m.

Cincinnati
OUT: G Clint Boling (Shoulder), LB Vontaze Burfict (Knee), TE Tyler Eifert (Back), TE Tyler Kroft (Knee)
QUESTIONABLE: WR Adriel Green (Hamstring), RB Jeremy Hill (Knee), DE Michael Johnson (Shoulder)

Houston
QUESTIONABLE: RB Lamar Miller (Ankle), CB Jonathan Joseph (Ribs)

Baltimore at Pittsburgh, 4:30 p.m. on Sunday

Baltimore

Pittsburgh
OUT: S Shamarko Thomas (Concussion)
DOUBTFUL: TE Ladarius Green (Concussion), WR Sammie Coates (Hamstring)
QUESTIONABLE: DE Stephon Tuitt (Knee), LB Anthony Chickillo (Ankle), WR Darrius Heyward-Bey (Foot), DE Ricardo Mathews (Ankle)

Denver at Kansas City, 8:30 p.m. on Sunday

Denver
OUT: TE Alexander Derby (Concussion), TE Virgil Green (Concussion), LB Brandon Marshall (Hamstring), S Terrell Ward (Concussion)
QUESTIONABLE: DE Derek Wolfe (Neck)

Kansas City
OUT: CB Phillip Gaines (Knee)
QUESTIONABLE: LB Justin Houston (Knee)

Detroit at Dallas, 8:30 p.m. on Monday – Injury report unavailable at press time, will run on Monday.

Saturday, Sunday and Monday Weather

Saturday, December 24
ATLANTA at Carolina, 1 p.m. (Overcast and 56 degrees)
Miami at Buffalo, 1 p.m. (Cloudy and 36 degrees)
San Diego at Cleveland, 1 p.m. (Cloudy and 38 degrees)
Tennessee at Jacksonville, 1 p.m. (Sunny and 76 degrees)
New York Jets at New England, 1 p.m. (Overcast with a 40 percent chance of rain and 42 degrees)
Washington at Chicago, 1 p.m. (Mostly cloudy and 35 degrees)
Minnesota at Green Bay, 1 p.m. (Partly cloudy and 35 degrees)
Tampa Bay at New Orleans, 1 p.m. (Game indoors)
Indianapolis at Oakland, 4:05 p.m. (Sunny and 50 degrees)
San Francisco at Los Angeles, 4:25 p.m. (Partly cloudy and 57 degrees)
Arizona at Seattle, 4:25 p.m. (Overcast with a 30 percent chance of rain and 37 degrees)
Cincinnati at Houston, 8:25 p.m. (Game indoors)
Baltimore at Pittsburgh, 4:30 p.m. Sunday (Sunny and 42 degrees)
Denver at Kansas City, 8:30 p.m. Sunday (Overcast and windy with a 50 percent chance of showers and 52 degrees)
Detroit at Dallas, 8:30 p.m. Monday (Game indoors)

Broadcast information, Officials and Injury Report courtesy the National Football League, odds courtesy Don Best, weather information courtesy The Weather Channel.

It’s Christmas Day for football fans as action shifts to Saturday when 12 games are on the docket for Christmas Eve afternoon and evening. Then after you’ve unwrapped those gifts and fixed that broken toy or gotten batteries, two more games will grace the football docket and the final Monday night game of the season takes place in Jerry World (AT&T Stadium) as Dallas hosts the Detroit Lions.

Four teams have already punched their playoff tickets (Dallas, Seattle, New England and Oakland) and several more spots could be filled by the weekend. For those teams, it’s their Christmas celebration; for those that are out of the playoff race, it’s like a lump of coal and switches in their stockings.

Time is running out. With two weeks to go in the NFL regular season, it’s time for teams to make their final playoff push.

Through the first 15 weeks, four postseason berths have been clinched. New England (AFC East, first-round bye) and Seattle (NFC West) have each won its division. Dallas and Oakland have both secured a playoff spot. And with two weeks left in the regular season, there are still 22 teams in contention for a trip to Super Bowl LI.

There are eight playoff spots up for grabs, including six division titles. Think of it as football’s version of the kid’s party game “musical chairs.” As long as the music plays and everyone’s moving around in a circle, it’s all good. It’s chaos when the music stops.

In the AFC, New England (12-2) can secure home-field advantage. Oakland (11-3) can clinch the AFC West and a first-round bye. Pittsburgh (9-5) can claim the AFC North division title. Houston (8-6) can win the AFC South and Kansas City (10-4) and Miami (9-5) can each lock up a playoff berth.

In the NFC, Dallas (12-2) can clinch the NFC East, a first-round bye and home-field advantage. Seattle (9-4-1) can earn a first-round bye. Atlanta (9-5) can claim the NFC South or a playoff berth. Detroit (9-5) can lock up the NFC North or a playoff berth. The New York Giants (10-4), Green Bay (8-6) and Tampa Bay (8-6) can each clinch a playoff berth.

Week 16 kicked off Thursday night when Philadelphia beat the New York Giants 24-16. The action continues on Saturday as the majority of Week 16 games (12 games) will be played on Saturday, December 24 due to the Christmas holiday. There will be seven games played in the early afternoon window at 1 p.m. Eastern and four contests in the late afternoon slot at 4:05 and 4:25 p.m. Eastern. The day concludes with a Christmas Eve game in primetime as Houston hosts Cincinnati at 8:25 p.m. on NFLN. The Texans can lock up the AFC South with a win and a Tennessee loss.

There will be two games on Christmas starting with Pittsburgh hosting Baltimore in a key AFC North battle at 4:30 p.m. on NFLN. The Steelers can clinch the division with a victory. However, the Ravens can win the division with two wins in their final two games. The second Christmas game features an important AFC West matchup between Denver and Kansas City in primetime at 8:30 p.m. on NBC. The Chiefs will earn a playoff berth with a victory or a Baltimore loss.

The action in week 15 concludes on Monday night at 8:30 p.m. on ESPN with Dallas hosting Detroit. The Cowboys, who have already secured a playoff berth, are closing in on clinching the NFC East, a first-round bye and home-field advantage. The Lions can lock up the NFC North with a win and a Green Bay loss.

Here are the possible scenarios for week 16. Pay attention, please! This is going to cause more confusion than a mouse in a burlesque show (apologies to Foghorn Leghorn!).

AFC Scenarios

New England clinched the AFC East division title and a first-round bye (Week 15).
Oakland clinched a playoff berth (Week 15).

New England – New England can clinch home-field advantage throughout the AFC playoffs with:
1) New England win + Oakland loss or tie OR
2) New England tie + Oakland loss

Oakland – Oakland can clinch the AFC West division title and a first-round bye with:
1) Oakland win + Kansas City loss or tie OR
2) Oakland tie + Kansas City loss

Pittsburgh – Pittsburgh can clinch the AFC North division title with:
1) Pittsburgh win

Kansas City – Kansas City can clinch a playoff berth with:
1) Kanass City win or tie OR
2) Baltimore loss or tie

Houston – Houston can clinch the AFC South division title with:
1) Houston win + Tennessee loss

Miami – Miami can clinch a playoff berth with:
1) Miami win + Denver loss or tie OR
2) Miami tie + Baltimore loss + Denver loss + Houston loss or tie OR
3) Miami tie + Baltimore loss + Denver loss + Tennessee loss or tie

NFC Scenarios

Seattle clinched the NFC West division title (Week 15).
Dallas clinched a playoff berth (Week 13).

Dallas – Dallas can clinch the NFC East division title and home-field advantage throughout the playoffs with:
1) Dallas win or tie OR
2) New York Giants loss or tie

Seattle – Seattle can clinch a first-round bye with:
1) Seattle win + Detroit loss + Atlanta loss or tie

New York Giants – The New York Giants can clinch a playoff berth with:
1) New York Giants win or tie OR
2) Detroit loss or tie OR
3) Green Bay loss or tie OR
4) Tampa Bay loss or tie OR
5) Atlanta loss

Detroit – Detroit can clinch the NFC North division title with:
1) Detroit win + Green Bay loss or tie OR
2) Detroit tie + Green Bay loss

Detroit can clinch a playoff berth with:
1) Detroit win + Tampa Bay loss or tie OR
2) Detroit tie + Tampa Bay loss OR
3) Detroit tie + Tampa Bay tie + Atlanta win OR
4) Washington loss or tie + Tampa Bay loss + Atlanta win or tie

Atlanta – Atlanta can clinch the NFC South division title with:
1) Atlanta win + Tamap Bay loss or tie OR
2) Atlanta tie + Tampa Bay loss

Atlanta can clinch a playoff berth with:
1) Atlanta win + Atlanta clinches strength of victory tiebreaker over Detroit OR
2) Atlanta win or tie + Green Bay loss or tie OR
3) Atlanta win + Detroit loss or tie OR
4) Atlanta tie + Detroit tie OR
5) Washington loss or tie + Green Bay loss OR
6) Washington loss or tie + Green Bay tie + Detroit loss

Green Bay – Green Bay can clinch a playoff berth with:
1) Green Bay win + WAS loss or tie + Tampa Bay loss + ATL win or tie + Green Bay clinches strength of victory tiebreaker over Tampa Bay

Tampa Bay – Tampa Bay can clinch a playoff berth with:
1) Tampa Bay win + Green Bay loss + Detroit loss + Washington loss OR
2) Tampa Bay win + Green Bay loss + Detroit loss + Washington tie + Tampa Bay clinches strength of victory tiebreaker over Detroit

RISING ROOKIE: Dallas rookie running back Ezekiel Elliott rushed for 159 yards and a touchdown in the Cowboys’ 26-20 victory over Tampa Bay in Week 15, tying Pro Football Hall of Famer Eric Dickerson (1983) and Mike Anderson (2000) for the most games (five) with at least 130 rushing yards by a rookie in NFL history.

Elliott leads the NFL with 1,551 rushing yards. With 49 rushing yards on Monday night against Detroit, he would become the fifth rookie in NFL history with 1,600 rushing yards in a season.

Elliott needs 258 rushing yards over his final two contests to surpass Dickerson (1,808) as the NFL’s all-time rookie rushing leader.

The rookies with the most rushing yards in NFL history:

PLAYER, SEASON (TEAM – RUSHING YARDS)
Eric Dickerson, 1983 (Los Angeles Rams – 1,808)^
George Rogers, 1981 (New Orleans – 1,674)
Alfred Morris, 2012 (Washington – 1,613)
Ottis Anderson, 1979 (St. Louis Cardinals – 1,605)
Edgerrin James, 1999 (Indianapolis – 1,553)
Ezekiel Elliott, 2016 (Dallas – 1,551)*
*Through 14 games
^Pro Football Hall of Famer

Elliott ranks second in the league with 1,902 yards from scrimmage (1,551 rushing, 351 receiving). With 98 scrimmage yards against Detroit on Monday night, he would become the third rookie in NFL history to reach 2,000 scrimmage yards, joining Dickerson (2,212 in 1983) and Edgerrin James (2,139 in 1999).

The rookies with the most yards from scrimmage in NFL history:
PLAYER – SEASON (TEAM – SCRIMMAGE YARDS)
Eric Dickerson – 1983 (Los Angeles Rams – 2,212)^
Edgerrin James – 1999 (Indianapolis – 2,139)
Doug Martin – 2012 (Tampa Bay – 1,926)
Billy Sims – 1980 (Detroit – 1,924)
Ottis Anderson – 1979 (St. Louis Cardinals – 1,913)
Ezekiel Elliott – 2016 (Dallas – 1,902)*
*Through 14 games
^Pro Football Hall of Famer

FLYING FALCONS: Atlanta quarterback Matt Ryan passed for 286 yards and two touchdowns for a 144.5 rating and running back Devonta Freeman had 139 rushing yards and three touchdowns in the Falcons’ 41-13 victory over San Francisco in Week 15.

With at least 40 points at Carolina on Saturday, the Falcons, who have scored 40+ points in a league-leading five games this season, would tie the NFL record for the most games in a single season with at least 40 points.

The teams with the most 40+ point games in a single season in NFL history:

TEAM – SEASON, GAMES SCORING 40+ POINTS
Denver – 2013, 6
Green Bay – 2011, 6
New Orleans – 2011, 6
St. Louis Rams – 2000, 6
Houston Oilers – 1961, 6
Los Angeles Rams – 1950, 6
Atlanta Falcons – 2016, 5*
*Through 14 games

CATCHING ON: Arizona wide receiver Larry Fitzgerald (98) and Pittsburgh wide receiver Antonio Brown (96) rank first and second, respectively, in the NFL in receptions this season.

Fitzgerald and Brown can each record their fourth career season with at least 100 receptions and that would put them in some pretty good company, tying Pro Football Hall of Famers Marvin Harrison and Jerry Rice and Reggie Wayne for the fourth-most 100-catch seasons in NFL history.

The players with the most 100-catch seasons in NFL history:
PLAYER – TEAM(S) (SEASONS WITH 100+ RECEPTIONS)
Brandon Marshall – Denver, Chicago and New York Jets (6)
Andre Johnson – Houston (5)
Wes Welker – New England (5)
Marvin Harrison – Indianapolis (4)^
Jerry Rice – San Francisco (4)^
Reggie Wayne – Indianapois (4)
Antonio Brown – Pittsburgh (3)
Larry Fitzgerald – Arizona (3)
^Pro Football Hall of Famer

With four receptions on Sunday, Brown would record his fourth consecutive season with at least 100 receptions, tying Harrison (four from 1999-2002) for the most consecutive 100-catch seasons in NFL history.

The players with the most consecutive 100-catch seasons in NFL history:

PLAYER – (TEAM, SEASONS WITH 100+ RECEPTIONS)
Marvin Harrison (1999-2002, Indianapolis – 4)^
Antonio Brown (2013-2015, Pittsburgh – 3)*
Brandon Marshall (2007-2009, Denver – 3)
Wes Welker (2007-2009m, New England – 3)
Herman Moore (1995-1997, Detroit – 3)
Jerry Rice (1994-1996, San Francisco – 3)^
*Active streak
^Pro Football Hall of Famer

DAVID DOING IT ALL: Arizona running back David Johnson leads the NFL with 1,938 scrimmage yards (1,138 rushing, 800 receiving) this season and has recorded at least 100 yards from scrimmage in each of the Cardinals’ first 14 games, becoming the first player in NFL history to begin a season with 14 consecutive games with at least 100 scrimmage yards.

With 62 rushing yards on Saturday at Seattle, Johnson would become the fourth different player in NFL history with at least 1,200 rushing yards and 800 receiving yards in the same season. Pro Football Hall of Famer Marshall Faulk accomplished the feat in three consecutive seasons from 1998-2000.

The players with 1,200+ rushing yards and 800+ receiving yards in a single season:

PLAYER – SEASON (TEAM – RUSHING YARDS; RECEIVING YARDS)
Le’Veon Bell – 2014 (Pittsburgh – 1,361; 854)
Steven Jackson – 2006 (St. Louis – 1,528; 806)
Marshall Faulk – 2000 (St. Louis – 1,359; 830)^
Marshall Faulk – 1999 (St. Louis – 1,381; 1,048)^
Marshall Faulk – 1998 (Indianapolis – 1,319; 908)^
David Johnson – 2016 (Arizona – 1,138; 800)*
*Through 14 games
^Pro Football Hall of Famer

GORE SOARS: Indianapolis running back Frank Gore has 1,142 scrimmage yards (891 rushing, 251 receiving) this season and has recorded at least 1,000 yards from scrimmage in 11 consecutive seasons beginning in 2006.

With 58 scrimmage yards on Saturday at Oakland, Gore would become the first player in NFL history with at least 1,200 scrimmage yards in 11 consecutive seasons, surpassing Pro Football Hall of Famers Curtis Martin (1995-2004), Emmitt Smith (1991-2000) and Barry Sanders (1989-1998), who each accomplished the feat in 10 consecutive seasons.

The most consecutive seasons with at least 1,200 scrimmage yards:

PLAYER; SEASONS (TEAM; CONSECUTIVE SEASONS WITH 1,200+ SCRIMMAGE YARDS)
Frank Gore; 2006-2015 (San Francisco and Indianapolis; 10)*
Curtis Martin; 1995-2004 (New England and New York Jets; 10)^
Emmitt Smith; 1991-2000 (Dallas; 10)^
Barry Sanders; 1989-1998 (Detroit; 10)^
*Active streak
^Pro Football Hall of Famer

THAT’S TIGHT: Carolina’s Greg Olsen leads all NFL tight ends with 992 receiving yards and ranks first among tight ends with 4,763 receiving yards since 2012.

With eight receiving yards against Atlanta on Saturday, Olsen, who has 1,000 receiving yards in each of the past two seasons, would become the first tight end in NFL history to record three consecutive seasons with at least 1,000 receiving yards.

The most consecutive seasons with 1,000 receiving yards by a tight end in NFL history:

PLAYER, TEAM (SEASONS, CONSECUTIVE SEASONS WITH 1,000 REC. YARDS)
Greg Olsen, Carolina (2014-2015, 2)*
Rob Gronkowski, New England (2014-2015, 2)
Jason Witten, Dallas (2009-2010, 2)
Tony Gonzalez, Kansas City (2007-2008, 2)
Shannon Sharpe, Denver (1996-1997, 2)^
Todd Christensen, Los Angeles Raiders (1983-1984, 2)
Kellen Winslow Sr., San Diego (1980-1981, 2)^

*Active streak
^Pro Football Hall of Famer

CLOSE GAMES: Like close football games? This is the season for you!

There have been 130 games decided by eight points or fewer and 120 games decided by seven points or fewer through Week 15, both the most such games in the first 15 weeks of a season in league annals. In Week 15, eight games were decided by eight points or fewer.

The most games decided by eight points or fewer through Week 15 in NFL history:

SEASON – GAMES DECIDED BY EIGHT POINTS OR FEWER THROUGH WEEK 15
2016 – 130
2002 – 123
2015 – 121
2012 – 119
2013 – 118

The most games decided by seven points or fewer through Week 15 in NFL history:

SEASON – GAMES DECIDED BY SEVEN POINTS OR FEWER THROUGH WEEK 15
2016 – 120
2015 – 113
2002 – 113
2013 – 110
2003 – 109

COMEBACKS GALORE: There have been 66 games won by teams that trailed in the fourth quarter through Week 15, the second-most such games in the first 15 weeks of a season in NFL history.

Five teams – Dallas Houston, Oakland, Pittsburgh and Tennessee – were victorious in Week 15 after trailing in the fourth quarter.

Tennessee overcame a 10-point fourth-quarter deficit, the largest fourth-quarter comeback of the week, to defeat Kansas City 19-17. Titans kicker Ryan Succup, who previously spent five seasons with the Chiefs, converted a game-winning 53-yard field goal as time expired and became the first kicker in NFL history to defeat his former team by converting a game-winning, come-from-behind 50+ yard field goal as time expired.

The most games won after trailing in the fourth quarter through Week 15 in NFL history:

SEASON – GAMES WON AFTER TRAILING IN 4TH QUARTER THROUGH WEEK 14
1989 – 67
2016 – 66
2012 – 65
2015 – 62
2011 – 62

EXCITING FINISHES: There have been 165 games within one score (eight points) in the fourth quarter through Week 15, the most such games in the first 15 weeks of a season in NFL history.

Ten games were within one score in the fourth quarter in Week 15.

The most games within one score in the fourth quarter through Week 15 in NFL history:

SEASON – GAMES WITHIN ONE SCORE IN 4TH QUARTER THROUGH WEEK 15
2016 – 165
2002 – 155
2013 – 154
2007 – 154
2004 – 154

Additionally, there have been 153 games within seven points in the fourth
quarter, including nine last week, through Week 15, the most such games in the
first 15 weeks of a season in NFL history.

The most games within seven points in the fourth quarter through Week 15 in NFL history:

SEASON – GAMES WITHIN SEVEN POINTS IN 4TH QUARTER THROUGH WEEK 15
2016 – 153
2013 – 148
2010 – 147
2004 – 147
2007 – 146

DALLAS DARLINGS: Dallas rookie running back Ezekiel Elliott rushed for 159 yards & one touchdown in the Cowboys’ 26-20 win over Tampa Bay. The performance marked Elliott’s fifth game with at least 130 rushing yards, tying Mike Andeson (2000) and Pro Football Hall of Famer Eric Dickerson (1983) for the most such games by a rookie in NFL history.

It was also Elliott’s 11th game this season with at least 90 rushing yards, tying Dickerson and George Rogers (1981) for the most games with 90 or more rushing yards by a rookie in NFL history.

Cowboys rookie quarterback Dak Prescott completed 32 of 36 passes (88.9 percent) for 279 yards in the win. Prescott’s 88.9 completion percentage is the second-highest in a single game in NFL history with a minimum of 30 attempts.

The players with the highest single-game completion percentage with a minimum of 30 attempts:

PLAYER (TEAM), DATE – OPPONENT (COMPLETIONS of ATTEMPTS, PERCENTAGE)  (MIN. 30 ATT.)
Rich Gannon (Oakland) 11/11/02 – Denver (34 of 38, 89.5)
Dak Prescott (Dallas) 12/18/16 – Tampa Bay (32 of 36, 88.9)
Drew Brees (New Orleans) 10/23/11 – Indianapolis (31 of 35, 88.6)
Eli Manning (New York Giants) 12/14/15 – Miami (27 of 31, 87.1)
Lynn Dickey (Green Bay) 9/4/83 – Houston Oilers (27 of 31, 87.1)
Ken Anderson (Cincinnati) 1/2/83 – Houston Oilers (27 of 31, 87.1)

WINNING WILSON: Seattle quarterback Russell Wilson passed for 229 yards and three touchdowns in the Seahawks’ 24-3 win against Los Angeles Thursday night in the Pacific Northwest.

The victory marked Wilson’s 34th career home win as a starter, surpassing Joe Flacco and Matt Ryan for the most home wins by a starting quarterback in his first five NFL seasons.

The quarterbacks with the most home wins in their first five NFL seasons:

PLAYER, TEAM (SEASONS, HOME WINS AS STARTER IN 1st 5 SEASONS)
Russell Wilson, Seattle (2012-2016, 34)*
Joe Flacco, Baltimore (2008-2012, 33)
Matt Ryan, Atlanta (2008-2012, 33)
*In 5th season

TERRIFIC TUCKER: Baltimore kicker Justin Tucker converted both field-goal attempts, including a 53-yarder, in the Ravens’ 27-26 victory over Philadelphia.

Tucker has made all 10 of his field-goal attempts of at least 50 yards this season, tying Blair Walsh (Minnesota, 2012) for the most 50+ yard field goals made in a single season.

The players with the most field goals of at least 50 yards made in a single season:

PLAYER, TEAM (SEASON, 50+ YARD FIELD GOALS
Justin Tucker, Baltimore (2016, 10)*
Blair Walsh, Minnesota (2012, 10)
Jason Hanson, Detroit (2008, 8)
Morten Anderson, Atlanta (1995, 8)
*Through Week 15

MARVELOUS MANNING: New York Giants quarterback Eli Manning completed 20 of 28 passes (71.4 percent) for 201 yards and two touchdowns in the Giants’ 17-6 win against Detroit.

Manning, who has 4,017 career completions, became the seventh quarterback in NFL history to eclipse 4,000 career completions.

The players with at least 4,000 career completions:

PLAYER – CAREER COMPLETIONS
Brett Favre – 6,300^
Peyton Manning – 6,125
Drew Brees – 5,784*
Tom Brady – 5,202*
Dan Marino – 4,967^
John Elway – 4,123^
Eli Manning – 4,017*
*Active
^Pro Football Hall of Famer

TOP-10 RISERS: Indianapolis running back Frank Gore gained 115 scrimmage yards (101 rushing, 14 receiving) in the Colts’ 34-6 win at Minnesota.

Gore, who has 16,332 career yards from scrimmage, surpassed Pro Football Hall of Famer Tony Dorsett (16,293) for the 10th-most yards from scrimmage in NFL history.

The players with the most yards from scrimmage in NFL history:

PLAYER – CAREER YARDS FROM SCRIMMAGE
Jerry Rice – 23,540^
Emmitt Smith – 21,579^
Walter Payton – 21,264^
Marshall Faulk – 19,154^
LaDainian Tomlinson – 18,456
Barry Sanders – 18.190^
Marcus Allen – 17,654^
Curtis Martin – 17,430^
Thurman Thomas – 16,532^
Frank Gore – 16,332*
Tony Dorsett – 16,293^
*Active
^Pro Football Hall of Famer

Baltimore wide receiver Steve Smith, Sr. had 40 receiving yards and a touchdown in the Ravens’ 27-26 win over Philadelphia.

Smith now has 14,618 career receiving yards and surpassed Pro Football Hall of Famer Marvin Harrison (14,580) for the seventh-most receiving yards in NFL history.

The players with the most receiving yards in NFL history:

PLAYER – CAREER RECEIVING YARDS
Jerry Rice – 22,895^
Terrell Owens – 15,934
Randy Moss – 15,292
Isaac Bruce – 15,208
Tony Gonzalez – 15,127
Tim Brown – 14,934^
Steve Smith Sr. – 14,618*
Marvin Harrison – 14,580^
*Active
^Pro Football Hall of Famer
Dallas tight end Jason Witten had 10 receptions in the Cowboys’ 26-20 win over Tampa Bay Sunday night in Arlington.

Witten, who has 1,086 career receptions, surpassed Terrell Owens (1,078) for the seventh-most career receptions in NFL history.

The players with the most receptions in NFL history:

PLAYER – CAREER RECEPTIONS
Jerry Rice – 1,549^
Tony Gonzalez – 1,325
Larry Fitzgerald – 1,116*
Marvin Harrison – 1,102^
Cris Carter – 1,101^
Tim Brown – 1,094^
Jason Witten – 1,086*
Terrell Owens – 1,078
*Active
^Pro Football Hall of Famer

Arizona wide receiver Larry Fitzgerald had seven receptions in the Cardinals’ 48-41 loss against New Orleans. Fitzgerald, who was playing in his 200th career game, has 1,116 career receptions and surpassed Pro Football Hall of Famer Jerry Rice (1,115) for the most catches in a player’s first 200 games in NFL history.

Detroit wide receiver Anquan Boldin, who also played in his 200th career game in Week 15, had three receptions in the Lions’ 17-6 loss at the New York Giants. Boldin has 1,067 career catches, the fourth-most in a player’s first 200 games.

The players with the most receptions in their first 200 career games in NFL history:

PLAYER – RECEPTIONS IN 1st 200 CAREER GAMES
Larry Fitzgerald – 1,116
Jerry Rice – 1,115^
Marvin Harrison – 1,102^
Anquan Boldin – 1,067
Andre Johnson – 1,062
^Pro Football Hall of Famer

ICYMI: New England defeated Denver 16-3 to clinch the AFC East and earn a first-round bye. It marks the eighth consecutive division title for the Patriots, the longest streak in NFL history, breaking a tie with the 1973-79 Los Angeles Rams (seven). New England is the only team in NFL history to win 13 division titles in a 14-year span.

Just win baby! The Oakland Raiders defeated San Diego 19-16 and secured a playoff berth, their first since 2002.

The Seattle Seahawks clinched the NFC West on Thursday night with a 24-3 win over Los Angeles in the land of Grunge, Salmon and Starbucks.

Wide receivers Larry Fitzgerald of Arizona and Anquan Boldin of Detroit each played in his 200th career game today. Fitzgerald, who had seven catches against New Orleans, has 1,116 career receptions and passed Pro Football Hall of Famer Jerry Rice (1,115) for the most catches in a player’s first 200 games in NFL history.

Boldin, who had three catches against the New York Giants, has 1,067 career receptions, the fourth-most in a player’s first 200 games. The only players with more are Fitzgerald (1,116), Rice (1,115) and Pro Football Hall of Famer Marvin Harrison (1,102).

New Orleans quarterback Drew Brees completed 37 of 48 passes (77.1 percent) for 389 yards with four touchdowns and no interceptions for a 127.9 passer rating in the Saints’ 48-41 win at Arizona. Brees has 21 career games with at least four touchdown passes and no interceptions, putting himself in some pretty good company, tying Tom Brady for the most
in NFL history.

Arizona running back David Johnson had 108 scrimmage yards (53 rushing, 55 receiving) and two rushing touchdowns against New Orleans. Johnson is the first player in NFL history to begin a season with 14 consecutive games with at least 100 scrimmage yards, surpassing Edgerrin James (13 in 2005). Johnsonalso tied Pro Football Hall of Famer Marcus Allen (1985) for the second-longest streak with at least 100 scrimmage yards at any point in a single season. Only Pro Football Hall of Famer Barry Sanders (15 in 1997) has a longer single-season streak in NFL history.

In his first two seasons, Johnson has 21 rushing touchdowns, eight receivingtouchdowns and a kickoff-return touchdown. He and Pro Football Hall of Famer Gale Sayers are the only players in NFL history with at least 20 rushing touchdowns, five receiving touchdowns and a kickoff-return touchdown in a player’s first two seasons.

New York Giants wide receiver Odell Beckham, Jr. had six catches for 64 yards and a touchdown in the Giants’ 17-6 win over Detroit. Beckham, who has 85 catches for 1,173 yards and 10 touchdowns this season, is the first player in NFL history to record at least 80 catches and 1,000 receiving yards in each of his first three seasons.

Beckham is one of three players in NFL history with at least 1,000 receiving yards and 10 touchdown catches in each of his first three seasons, joining John Jefferson (1978-1980) and Randy Moss (1998-2000).

Green Bay running back Ty Montgomery rushed for 162 yards and two touchdowns in the Packers’ 30-27 win at Chicago. Montgomery is the second Packer to rush for at least 150 yards and two touchdowns in a game against the Bears (Ahman Green, September 29, 2003).

The two teams have met 192 times in the regular season, the most-played rivalry in NFL history. With Green Bay’s victory, the all-time series is now tied 93-93-6, marking the first time the series has been tied since 1933 (11-11-4).

Revenge is a dish best served cold: Tennessee kicker Ryan Succop converted a game-winning 53-yard field goal as time expired in the Titans’ 19-17 victory at Kansas City. Succop, who spent five seasons with the Chiefs from 2009-13, became the first kicker in NFL history to defeat his former team by converting a game-winning, come-from-behind 50+ yard field goal as time expired.

Pittsburgh kicker Chris Boswell converted all six field-goal attempts in the Steelers’ 24-20 win at Cincinnati. Boswell’s six made field goals tied a franchise record set by Gary Anderson (10/23/88) and Jeff Reed (12/1/02).

Steelers wide receiver Antonio Brown had three catches for 58 yards in the win against the Bengals. Brown has 471 receptions since the start of 2013, the most catches by a player in any four-year span in NFL history. Pro Football Hall of Famer Marvin Harrison had 469 catches from 1999 to 2002.

As for last week, 10-6. For the season, 153-69. Yes, we’ve been on Santa’s nice list (wish we could say the same about the teams that aren’t in the playoff race… they’re on the naughty list).

As an added Christmas gift, we’re making every game on the docket DRILL WORTHY! (even you, Cleveland!) (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?” (Note…. you might want to do that shopping Saturday, since most stores will be closed because Christmas falls on a Sunday this year.)

Having said that, here are the Saturday, Sunday and Monday picks for week 16…

ATLANTA (9-5) at Carolina (6-8), 1 p.m. on FOX and DirecTV 709. They meet again, this time in Charlotte. A pair of NFC South rivals meet on Christmas Eve afternoon in the Tar Heel State as first place Atlanta meets Cam Newton and the Carolina Panthers at Bank of America Stadium.

Atlanta surpassed their win total from 2015 after they manhandled Colin Kaepernick and the San Francisco 49ers 41-13 last Sunday at the Georgia Dome. The Falcons led the struggling 49ers 28-13 at the half and proceeded to shut out their guests from the West Coast 13-0 in the second half. DeVonta Freeman ran for 139 yards and three TDs, as Atlanta ran for 248 yards (San Francisco ran for 107) with Matt Ryan (286 yards) threw a pair of TDs (Kaepernick threw for 183 yards and a pair of TDs but was sacked twice).

Carolina kept their hopes of a playoff spot alive after their 26-15 win over Washington Monday night in Landover. The defending NFC champs led 13-9 at the break at FedEx Field, then took control of the Redskins in the second half. Carolina held Washington to 19 yards on the ground, while the Panthers tallied 148 (Jonathan Stewart led all rushers with 132) and Newton threw for 300 yards and a pair of TDs, one to WR Ted Ginn, Jr. (Washington’s Kirk Cousins threw for 315 but was sacked once and picked off once).

They met in week four in the Big Peach and Atlanta manhandled Newton and the Panthers, coming away 48-33 winners in the Georgia Dome. Atlanta led 17-10 at the intermission and never looked back, knocking Newton (165 yards, TD) out of the contest with a concussion, while Ryan burned Carolina for 503 yards and four TDs (Atlanta outrushed Carolina 90-49).

Carolina was favored by 3 1/2 in the week four meeting in the Big Peach and the over/under was 49 1/2. Both clubs covered the over/under with 51 total points and the Falcons covered the spread, winning by 15. Atlanta’s favored by 3 1/2 and the over/under’s 53. For Atlanta, a win means a playoff spot and a possible division title, dethroning Carolina in the process. For the Panthers, a win means that they stay alive for at least another week. History repeats here. Atlanta covers the 3 1/2 and wins the NFC South in the process.

Miami (9-5) at Buffalo (7-7), 1 p.m. on CBS and DirecTV 705. A pair of AFC East rivals meet in chilly upstate New York as one team, assured of a winning season, takes on their rivals, who look to go back to the post-season for the first time since Super Bowl XXVII. Miami and Buffalo meet in Orchard Park in ah week seven rematch along the shores of Lake Erie.

Miami assured themselves of a winning season last Saturday night in the Meadowlands after they came away 34-13 winners over the New York Jets. The ‘Fins led 13-10 at the half, then proceeded to shutout the Jets in the final 30 minutes of play at Met Life Stadium. Matt Moore, taking over for Ryan Tannehill (knee) threw for 236 yards and four TDs, connecting with TE Dion Sims on a pair of strikes, while Bryce Petty (235 yards, TD) and Ryan Fitzpatrick (31 yards) combined to throw three interceptions (Petty 2, Fitzpatrick 1) in the loss. New York did manage to hold Miami to 67 yards rushing, while tallying 116 but turned the ball over four times.

The Bills saved their playoff chances in upstate New York last Sunday, giving Cleveland their 14th straight loss, taking the Browns to task by a final of 33-13. Buffalo led 17-3 at the break and held Cleveland off in the second half for the win. LeSean McCoy ran for 153 yards for the Bills, tallying a pair of TDs in the win at New Era Field (Buffalo outrushed the Browns 280-107). The Bills sacked Robert Griffin III (196 yards) five times, while Tyrod Taylor threw for 174, with a TD pass to TE Charles Clay in his column.

They met in week seven in Miami Gardens at Hard Rock Stadium and the Dolphins took the 28-25 win over the Bills in the Sunshine State. Buffalo led 10-6 at the half before Miami charged back in the second half to take the win, with Jay Ajayi leading all rushers with 214 yards and a TD (Miami outrushed Buffalo 256-67), while Tannehill threw for 204 yards and a TD (Buffalo’s Tyrod Taylor threw for 224 yards and a TD but was sacked four times).

Buffalo was favored by 3 and the over/under was 45 in the week seven contest in the Sunshine State. Miami covered the spread with their 3-point victory over the Bills and both clubs covered the over/under with 53 points. Buffalo’s favored again, this time by 3 1/2 and the over/under this time around is 42. The Dolphins know that they control their destiny and can knock off the Bills with a win in upstate New York. The Bills don’t want to be voted off the playoff island yet and are looking for immunity from the football gods. Vice is nice and so are the Dolphins this week. Miami covers the 3 1/2 and wins in upstate New York.

San Diego (5-9) at Cleveland (0-14), 1 p.m. on CBS and DireCT 706. A pair of teams with no playoff hopes meet along the shores of Lake Erie as the San Diego Chargers look to be grinch-like and give the Cleveland Browns their 15th loss of the 2016 campaign.

The Bolts saw their playoff hopes vanish faster than a sugar cookie at a Christmas party last Sunday at Qualcomm as they fell to Oakland 19-16. San Diego took a 16-13 lead over the Silver and Black with 6:14 left in the third quarter when Philip Rivers and rookie TE Hunter Henry connected on a 7-yard TD pass. That lead would not last very long as the Raiders’ Sebastian Janikowski kicked a 21-yard field goal to tie the contest up with 8:38 left in regulation and then kicked a 44-yarder with 2:40 left to play. San Diego then had four shots to move the ball and perhaps tie things up at Qualcomm but Rivers was picked off by S Reggie Nelson, who ran the ball back to San Diego’s 13. The Raiders then ran out the clock and picked up a playoff spot, while the Chargers saw their hopes for post-season football go the way of a snowflake. Oakland outrushed San Diego 145-73 and while Rivers threw a pair of TDs, he was sacked twice and threw the interception that doomed San Diego (Derek Carr threw for 213 with a TD).

Cleveland picked up their 14th straight loss, losing to Buffalo 33-13 last Sunday in Orchard Park. Buffalo led 17-3 at the break and held Cleveland off in the second half for the win. LeSean McCoy ran for 153 yards for the Bills, tallying a pair of TDs in the win at New Era Field (Buffalo outrushed the Browns 280-107). The Bills sacked Robert Griffin III (196 yards) five times, while Tyrod Taylor threw for 174, with a TD pass to TE Charles Clay in his column.

San Diego leads the series 15-8-1, have outscored the Browns 576-468 and won the last meeting between the clubs, taking a 30-27 win last year at Qualcomm (Cleveland’s last win in the series came in 2012, when the Browns were 7-6 winners in Cleveland.

In the week four contest on the West Coast, Cleveland and San Diego found themselves tied 13-13 at the half and took the lead with 5:54 left in the third when Browns K Travis Coons connected on a 33 yard field goal for a 16-13. That lead would be short-lived as Rivers and TE Ladarius Green hooked up on a 19-yard TD strike with 4:23 left in the third. Cleveland would eventually re-tie the contest when Josh McCown (who took over for Johnny Manziel) and TE Gary Barnage connected on a 1-yard TD pass with 2:09 left. Thinking they had overtime at the very least in their grasp, San Diego attempted a 39-yard field goal by Josh Lambo. Lambo’s kick sailed wide left but Cleveland was flagged for being offside, giving the Chargers five more yards and new life. This time, Lambo connected on a 34-yard attempt as the clock struck :00 to give the Browns the loss. Cleveland outrushed San Diego 100-91 and Rivers threw for 358 yards and three TDs, while McCown threw for 356 yards with a pair of TDs and was sacked four times.

San Diego’s favored by 6 and the over/under’s 44. You might want to get that last minute Christmas shopping in and avoid this one. Chargers may not cover the 6 but they win in the Buckeye State and send the Browns to 0-15 in the process.

Tennessee (8-6) at Jacksonville (2-12), 1 p.m. on CBS and DirecTV 707. They won three games last year and changed coaches in mid-season. They’ve won five more games than they did last year. The improved Tennessee Titans travel to the Sunshine State for a meeting with the struggling Jacksonville Jaguars, who made a change of their own this week.

Tennessee took Kansas City to the wire last Sunday at Arrowhead and came away 19-17 winners over the Chiefs on the road. The Titans trailed 17-7 at the intermission and pulled to within 1 with 3:12 left in regulation when rookie RB Derek Henry scored on a 1-yard run to make it 17-16. Tennesee then went for two to take the lead but Marcus Mariota’s conversion try failed. After a Kansas City punt, the Titans got the ball back and made it all the way to the Chiefs’ 35 yard line, where they set up what would eventually be the game-winning field goal try by Ryan Succup (who kicked for the Chiefs last year). Succup’s first try was short but Kansas City burned a time out to make him think it over. Succop then connected on his second try, a 53-yarder, that sailed through the goal posts as the clock expired. Kansas City outrushed the Titans 158-148 in the chilly air at Arrowhead (gametime temperature? a balmy 1 degree with a wind chill of -9… hey, you asked!) and Mariota threw for 241 yards, while Alex Smith had 163 (both men threw an interception and both were sacked once).

As for Jacksonville… the Jaguars led 20-14 with 7:54 left to play in Houston before the Texans stormed back to come away 21-20 winners over Jacksonville at NRG Stadium. Jacksonville led 13-5 over the Texans, who benched Brock Osweiler (48 yards, two interceptions) in favor of Todd Savage. Houston outrushed Jacksonville 79-67 in the Lone Star State and Savage threw for 260 yards yards in the come from behind win, as RB Lamar Miller scored the game winner with 2:51 left from a yard away.

That was the first bit of bad news for the Jaguars. The team returned to the Sunshine State and fired head coach Gus Bradley (14-48 career record) the next day and put in Doug Marrone, the assistant head coach-offense/offensive line coach, as the interim head coach for the remainder of the season. Marrone is no stranger to being a head coach. He was at the helm of the Buffalo Bills from 2013 to 2014, before he infamously opted out of contract after the team came under new ownership. In his two seasons in upstate New York, he went 15-17 in two seasons as Bills coach but led the Bills to a 9-7 season in 2014, which was the first winning season for the franchise since 2004.

They met in the Music City in week eight on a Thursday night and the Titans came out 36-22 winners over Jacksonville. Tennessee led 27-0 at the half before Jacksonville managed to charge back and make things closer than Titan fans would have liked at Nissan Stadium. DeMarco Murray ran for 123 of Tennessee’s 214 yards with a TD and Mariota threw for 270 yards and a pair of TDs, while Jacksonville was held to 48 yards on the ground and Bortles threw for 337 yards and three TDs for the Jaguars.

Tennessee was favored by 3 1/2 and won by 14 in the week eight contest in the Music City. As for the 44 1/2 over/under? Both teams took care of that, scoring 58 points. Tennessee’s favored by 5 in the Sunshine State and the over/under this time is 44. Tennessee’s looking to make it to the post-season, while Jacksonville’s trying to spoil the Titans’ party. Jacksonville makes it close but the Titans win in Jacksonville.

New York Jets (4-10) at New England (12-2), 1 p.m. on CBS and DirecTV 708. This time, it’s in Foxboro. The Pats play host to the New York Jets in a week 13 rematch at Gillette. New England has secured the AFC East while the Jets are looking to spoil the Pats party in Foxboro.

GangGreen saw a 7-0 first quarter lead against Miami get away from them and eventually fell to their AFC East rivals 34-13 at Met Life Stadium last Saturday night. Miami led 13-10 at the half, then proceeded to shutout the Jets in the final 30 minutes of play at Met Life Stadium. Bryce Petty and Ryan Fitzpatrick combined for three interceptions in the loss at home (Petty had two picks, while Ryan had one) Matt Moore, taking over for Ryan Tannehill (knee) threw for 236 yards and four TDs, connecting with TE Dion Sims on a pair of strikes. Petty threw for 235 yards and a TD, while Fitzpatrick threw for 31. If there was a bright side for the J-E-T-S! JETS! JETS! JETS!, it was that New York did manage to hold Miami to 67 yards rushing, while tallying 116 but turned the ball over four times.

New England and Tom Brady ended their curse in Denver at Sports Authority Field at Mile High and defeated the defending Super Bowl champs on the road and in the chill 16-3 (game time temperature? 18 with a wind chill of 7… can you say COLD!?) The Pats broke a 3-3 tie after the first 15 minutes of action and scored their last 13 points without a challenge from Denver. New England led 10-3 at the intermission and never looked back. Denver was outrushed 136-58 by New England and Brady threw for 188 yards with no TD but did not throw an interception. Denver’s Trevor Seiman threw for 282 but was sacked four times in the loss.

They met in week 12 in upstate New Jersey and Brady and the Pats were 22-17 winners. Tied 10-10 at the half, New England would go on to outscore GangGreen 12-7 to take the win on the road. New York led 17-16 with 7:02 left to play after New England’s Stephen Gostkowski connected on a 41-yard field goal and saw the Pats take the lead for keeps when Brady and WR Malcolm Mitchell connected on their second TD pass of the afternoon, good for 8 yards with 1:56 left to play. New England outrushed GangGreen 91-64 and Brady outpaced Fitzpatrick 286-269 (each threw a pair of TDs).

The Pats were 8-point favorites in the Meadowlands but only won by five. The 47 1/2 over/under stayed safe, as both teams combined for only 39 points. New England’s favored by 16 and the over/under’s 44. The Jets are a somewhat bad team but they’re not 16 points bad. New England will win this one at Gillette but expect the J-E-T-S! JETS! JETS! JETS! to give them a battle.

Washington (7-6-1) at Chicago (3-11), 1 p.m. on FOX and DirecTV 710. Washington limps into the Windy City for an afternoon contest with Chicago, who is trying to keep their heads above water.

The Redskins saw their playoff hopes take a turn for the worst, as they fell to Carolina and Cam Newton 26-15 Monday night in Landover. The defending NFC East champs trailed 13-9 at the break at FedEx Field, then saw Carolina take control of the Redskins in the second half. While Carolina ran for 148 yards (with RB Jonathan Stewart accounting for 132), Washington was held to 19 yards on the ground. Newton threw for 300 yards and a pair of TDs, one to WR Ted Ginn, Jr., while Washington’s Kirk Cousins threw for 315 but was sacked once and picked off once).

Chicago and Green Bay played in somewhat chilly conditions (temperature of 11, wind chill of -4) at Soldier Field last Sunday before Da Bears fell to their NFC North rivals 30-27. Chicago pulled to within 3 with 7:34 left in the contest when rookie RB Jordan Howard scored from nine yards out and tied the contest on a 22 yard field goal by Connor Barth with 1:19 left. Chicago fans then had their hearts broken as Aaron Rodgers (252 yards) and WR Jordy Nelson connected on a 60-yard pass late in the contest. Green Bay then spiked the ball to kill the clock and Chicago burned a timeout with 3 seconds left, which allowed the Packers to set up Mason Crosby for a 32-yard field goal attempt. Crosby’s kick was true and as time ran out, Chicago suffered their 11th loss of the season. Green Bay outrushed Chicago 226-95, with the Packers’ Ty Montgomery rushing for 162 yards and a pair of TDs. Chicago’s Mark Barkley threw for 362 yards with a pair of TDs but was picked off three times.

Including games that took place in Boston when the Redskins were known as the Braves and Da Bears played their home games at Wrigley Field, Washington holds a 21-20-1 lead in the series, Chicago has outscored Washington 855-763 and the ‘Skins have won the last six contests in the series, including a 24-21 win last year in the Windy City (Chicago’s last win over Washington came in 2003 at Solider Field by a final of 27-24).

They met in the Windy City in week 14 and Washington led 14-7 at the intermission before Chicago tied things up with 1:24 left in the third quarter when RB Matt Forte scored on a 7-yard run. The tie would eventually be broken by Washington, who took the lead for keeps with a 47-yard field goal by Dustin Hopkins with 14:07 left to play in regulation. Chicago had a chance to send the contest into overtime with 1:45 left but Robbie Gould’s 50-yard field goal try sailed wide right, turning the ball over to Washington, who ran out the clock and took the win. Washington outrushed Chicago 99-87 and Cousins threw for 300 yards and a TD, while Jay Cutler threw for 315 yards and a pair of TDs (each man was sacked twice, while Cousins threw the game’s only interception).

Washington’s favored by 3 1/2 and the over/under’s 47. Will it be “Hail to the Redskins!” or “Hell, it’s the Redskins!?” We like hail. Washington may not make the postseason but they cover the 3 1/2 in the Windy City and take the win from Da Bears.

Minnesota (7-7) at Green Bay (8-6), 1 p.m. on FOX and DirecTV 711. A pair of NFC North rivals meet in a week two rematch in the land of cheese, beer and Bratwurst as the Packers host the Minnesota Vikings on the Frozen Tundra of Lambeau Field.

Minnesota struggled in their 34-6 loss to Andrew Luck and Indianapolis last Sunday at US Bank Stadium. The Vikings trailed 27-0 at the half and could never really get on track, getting only a pair of Keith Forbath field goals for their only points. The Colts outrushed Minnesota 161-34 in the return of RB Adrian Peterson, who tallied only 22 yards on six carries, while Indy’s Frank Gore led all rushers with 101 yards. Luck threw for 250 yards and a pair of TDs, while Sam Bradford threw for 291 yards but was sacked five times and picked off once.

Green Bay won a thriller in the Windy City as the Packers and Da Bears played in somewhat chilly conditions (temperature of 11, wind chill of -4) at Soldier Field last Sunday before Da Bears fell to their NFC North rivals 30-27. Chicago pulled to within 3 with 7:34 left in the contest when rookie RB Jordan Howard scored from nine yards out and tied the contest on a 22 yard field goal by Connor Barth with 1:19 left. Bears fans then had their hearts broken as Aaron Rodgers (252 yards) and WR Jordy Nelson told their fans to R-E-L-A-X as the two connected on a 60-yard pass late in the contest. After the Packers spiked the ball to kill the clock, Chicago burned a timeout with 3 seconds left, which allowed the Packers to set up Mason Crosby for a 32-yard field goal attempt. Crosby’s kick was true and as time ran out, Chicago suffered their 11th loss of the season. Green Bay outrushed Chicago 226-95, with the Packers’ Ty Montgomery rushing for 162 yards and a pair of TDs. Chicago’s Mark Barkley threw for 362 yards with a pair of TDs but was picked off three times.

The Packers are looking to avenge a 17-14 loss to the Vikings in the Land of 10,000 Lakes in week two. Minnesota led 10-7 at the break in the Sunday night contest at US Bank Stadium, then led 17-7 after three periods before the Packers pulled to within three when Rodgers scored on a 10-yard run with 12:41 left in regulation. Green Bay did outrush Minnesota 83-30 (Peterson was held to 19 yards) and Rodgers threw for 213 yards and a TD to Jordy Nelson (Rodgers was sacked five times), while Bradford tallied 286 yards in the air with a pair of TDs and four sacks.

In the week two Sunday night contest, Green Bay was favored by 2 1/2 and the over/under was 43 1/2. While both teams did not reach the over/under, scoring only 31 points, Minnesota did cover the spread with their 3-point victory in the Land of 10,000 Lakes. This time, the Packers are 6 1/2 points to the good at Lambeau and the over/under is 48. The Packers know that if they run the table and win out, the NFC North is theirs. Minnesota wants to make sure that doesn’t happen. Packers get revenge and Lambeau and win in the land of beer, cheese and Bratwurst.

Tampa Bay (8-6) at New Orleans (6-8), 4:25 p.m. on FOX and DirecTV 712. Jameis Winston vs. Drew Brees. Round two of the Tampa Bay-New Orleans rivalry gets underway in the Big Easy at both teams are looking for a chance to knock Atlanta off the NFC South mountain.

Tampa Bay fell to Dallas 26-20 in Arlington last Sunday night. The Bucs led 20-17 with 4:12 left in the third when Winston (247 yards, two TDs, two interceptions) and TE Connor Brate connected on a 10-yard TD pass. Dallas, who led 17-6 at the half, roared back to take the lead for keeps with three Dan Bailey field goals in the fourth quarter. Dallas held Tampa Bay to 52 yards on the ground, while the Cowboys’ Ezekiel Elliott ran for 159 yards (Dallas ran for 185) and a TD that will be talked about for years when he leaped into the Salvation Army kettle behind the endzone (Elliott would not be fined by the league or the team and gave the charity a sizeable donation). Dallas’ Dak Prescott threw for 279 yards as Dallas clinched a playoff spot in the process.

New Orleans held on for dear life in the desert last Sunday against Arizona and came away 48-41 winners in Glendale. The contest, which eliminated Arizona from the post-season, had six lead changes and two ties at University of Phoenix Stadium and had New Orleans leading at the half 24-20. New Orleans outrushed Arizona 130-116 and Brees threw for 389 yards and four TDs, while Carson Palmer threw for 318 yards and a pair of TDs.

They met in the Sunshine State two weeks ago and Tampa Bay held Brees without a TD pass for the second consecutive contest, taking an 16-11 win at Raymond James Stadium. The Bucs’ Doug Martin scored the contest’s only TD on a 1-yard run in the second quarter. Tampa Bay ran for 104 yards in the five-point win, while holding New Orleans to 46 and sealed the win in the final seconds when Keith Tandy picked off Brees to send Bucs fans home happy. Winston threw for 184 yards in the win, while Brees tallied 257 yards in the NFC South contest with three interceptions.

Tampa Bay was favored by 2 1/2 and the contest had a 51 1/2 over/under. While both teams mustered 27 points, the Bucs did cover the spread with the 5-point win in the Sunshine State. New Orleans is favored by 3 with a 53 over/under in the Big Easy. Both teams are trying to catch the Falcons in the NFC South (Tampa Bay split the series with Atlanta, while New Orleans lost to the Falcons in the Big Easy in week three). The loser is pretty much done in the NFC South race, while the winner keeps hope alive for at least another week. Saints march over Tampa Bay in the Big Easy and covers the 3 like gumbo over dirty rice.

Indianapolis (7-7) at Oakland (11-3), 4:05 p.m. on CBS and DirecTV 713. The Colts travel west to Oakland for a late Saturday afternoon contest with the Oakland Raiders in northern California.

The Colts and Luck manhandled Minnesota 34-6 last Sunday at US Bank Stadium. Indy led from start to finish and never were threatened, leading 27-0 at the half. Minnesota was held to a pair of Keith Forbath field goals for their only points. The Colts outrushed Minnesota 161-34 in the return of RB Adrian Peterson, who tallied only 22 yards on six carries, while Indy’s Frank Gore led all rushers with 101 yards. Luck threw for 250 yards and a pair of TDs, while Sam Bradford threw for 291 yards but was sacked five times and picked off once.

Oakland used a pair of Sebastian Janikowski field goals to take a 19-16 win over San Diego at Qualcomm last Sunday afternoon in southern California. The Chargers were up 16-13 over the Silver and Black with 6:14 left in the third quarter when Philip Rivers and rookie TE Hunter Henry connected on a 7-yard TD pass. That lead would not last very long as Janikowski kicked the first of his two second half field goals, a 21-yard field goal to tie the contest up with 8:38 left in regulation and then kicked a 44-yarder with 2:40 left to play. San Diego then had four shots to move the ball and perhaps tie things up at Qualcomm but Rivers was picked off by S Reggie Nelson, who ran the ball back to San Diego’s 13. The Raiders then ran out the clock and picked up a playoff spot, while the Chargers saw their hopes for post-season football go the way of a snowflake. Oakland outrushed San Diego 145-73 and while Rivers threw a pair of TDs, he was sacked twice and threw the interception that doomed San Diego (Derek Carr threw for 213 with a TD).

Including contests played in Baltimore and Los Angeles, the Raiders lead the series 7-6 and the Silver and Black have outscored the Colts 302-289. However… the Colts have won the last four contests, taking a 21-17 win in the Hoosier State in 2013, while Oakland’s last win came in 2001 by a final of 23-18 in Indianapolis. The Raiders are favored by 3 1/2 and the over/under is 53. Both numbers make sense. Indy makes this one interesting but the Raiders take this one in the Black Hole and covers the 3 1/2.

San Francisco (1-13) at Los Angeles (4-10), 4:25 p.m. on FOX and DirecTV 714. A pair of NFC West cellar-dwellers meet in Tinseltown as the 49ers make their way down I-5 for a West Coast Christmas Eve affair in LA.

Colin Kaepernick and the San Francisco 49ers lost their 13th contest in a row, falling to Atlanta 41-13 last Sunday at the Georgia Dome. The struggling 49ers trailed 28-13 at the half in the Big Peach and were then shut out their hosts 13-0 in the second half. DeVonta Freeman ran for 139 yards and three TDs, as Atlanta ran for 248 yards (San Francisco ran for 107) with Matt Ryan (286 yards) threw a pair of TDs (Kaepernick threw for 183 yards and a pair of TDs but was sacked twice).

Los Angeles fell to Seattle 24-3 last Thursday night in the Pacific Northwest. The win by Seattle allowed them to capture the NFC West title, while ruining the coaching debut of interim head coach John Fassel in the process. After a scorless first quarter at Century Link Field, the Seahawks took a 10-3 lead at the intermission and were never really threatened by the Rams. Los Angeles was held to a 36-yard field by Greg Zuerlein with 55 seconds left before the half and held to 47 yards rushing. (Seattle had 72) The Seahawks did manage to hold Los Angeles to 47 yards on the ground, sacking Jeff Goff four times in the process. Russell Wilson, meanwhile, threw for 229 yards and three TDs in the somewhat lopsided win.

They met in northern California in week one at Levis’ Stadium and the 49ers picked up their only win of the 2016 campaign, shutting out the Rams 28-0. San Francisco led 14-0 at the half and then scored their other 14 points in the fourth quarter unchallenged. San Francisco outrushed the Rams 150-65 and Case Keenum threw for 130 yards but threw two interceptions, while Blaine Gabbert threw for 170 yards and a TD.

The Rams were favored by 2 1/2 with a 43 over/under in the week one contest in northern California and San Francisco covered the spread with their 28-point win. The over/under stayed safe as both clubs combined for only 28 points. Los Angeles is favored by 4 this time around and the over/under’s 40. You might want to take a pass on this one and get yourself ready for Midnight Mass. Rams butt their way into the win column this week and covers the 4.

Arizona (5-8-1) at Seattle (9-4-1), 4:25 p.m. on FOX and DirecTV 715. The Seattle Seahawks, who won the NFC West, host the Arizona Cardinals in the Pacific Northwest in a late afternoon showdown in the land of Grunge, Salmon and Starbucks.

Cardinal fans saw their dim playoff hopes come to a crashing end as they fell to New Orleans Arizona 48-41 in Glendale. The contest had six lead changes and two ties at University of Phoenix Stadium and had New Orleans leading at the half 24-20. New Orleans outrushed the Desert Angry Birds 130-116 and Brees threw for 389 yards and four TDs, while Carson Palmer threw for 318 yards and a pair of TDs.

Seattle manhandled a helpless Los Angeles Rams team 24-3 last Thursday night in the Pacific Northwest, ruining the coaching debut of interim head coach John Fassel in the process. After a scorless first quarter at Century Link Field, Seattle took a 10-3 lead at the intermission and were never really threatened by the Rams, who was held to a 36-yard field by Greg Zuerlein with 55 seconds left before the half. While they didn’t breach the 100-yard mark (Seattle had 72), the Seahawks did manage to hold Los Angeles to 47 yards on the ground, sacking Jeff Goff four times in the process. Russell Wilson, meanwhile, threw for 229 yards and three TDs in the somewhat lopsided win.

Meeting on a Sunday night in the desert in week seven, Seattle and Arizona played to a 6-6 tie that saw all the scoring in the contest come by way of the kickers (Stephen Hauschka and Chris Catanzaro). Both kickers kicked field goals in the overtime and both had chances to give their team the win in the extra period but both attempts fell short of their marks. Arizona led 3-0 at the half before Hauschka sent the contest into overtime with a 40-yard effort with 4 minutes left in regulation. Arizona’s David Johnson led all rushers with 113 yards as the Desert Angry Birds outrushed Seattle 132-52, while Russell Wilson threw for 225 yards, with Carson Palmer throwing for 342 yards (both men did not throw an interception, while Palmer threw four interceptions).

In the week seven sister-kisser, the Desert Angry Birds were favored by 1 1/2 and the over/under was 43 1/2. Neither the over/under or the spread were in danger as they played to the tie and both teams scored 12 points. The Seahawks in the land of Grunge, Salmon and Starbucks are favored by 8 1/2 and the over/under’s 43 1/2. Seattle takes this one but they won’t cover the 8 1/2.

Cincinnati (5-8-1) at Houston (8-6), 8:25 p.m. on NFL Netowrk and Twitter. Andy Dalton comes back to his home state as the Bengals travel to Houston for a Christmas Eve contest with the Houston Texans in the Lone Star State.

Cincinnati let a 20-9 halftime lead against Pittsburgh get away from them at Paul Brown Stadium and fell to their AFC North rivals 24-20. The Bengals, who were eliminated from the post-season, held the Steelers to three Chris Boswell field gals in the first 30 minutes of action before Pittsburgh proceeded to shut out the Bengals in the second half, scoring their final 15 points unchallenged. After Boswell added another field goal, the Steelers took the lead for the first time and for keeps when Pittsburgh QB Ben Roethlisberger (286 yards, TD) and WR Eli Rodgers connected on a 24-yard TD pass with 7:29 left to play. The Bengals were held to 76 yards on the ground, while the Steelers tallied 97 and Andy Dalton threw for 157 yards with an interception for the Bengals.

The Texans trailed lowly Jacksonville 20-14 with 7:54 left to play in Houston before they stormed back to come away 21-20 winners over Jacksonville at NRG Stadium. Jacksonville led 13-5 over the Texans, who benched Brock Osweiler (48 yards, two interceptions) in the contest in favor of Todd Savage. Houston outrushed Jacksonville 79-67 in the Lone Star State and Savage threw for 260 yards yards in the come from behind win, as RB Lamar Miller scored the game winner with 2:51 left from a yard away.

The series is even at 4-4 and the Bengals have outscored Houston 158-146. Houston won the last meeting last year in Cincinnati 10-6 at Paul Brown Stadium (the Bengals’ last win in the series came in 2014 in Houston by a final of 22-13). The Bengals let a 6-3 lead get away from them in the fourth quarter as the Texans took the lead with 14:20 left to play when WR DeAndre Hopkins scored on a 22 yard pass from Tyler Yates. Houston outrushed Cincinnati in the Monday night contest 82-74 and Dalton threw for 197 yards but was sacked four times, while Blaine Hoyer threw for 123 yards (Yates threw for 69).

Houston’s favored by 2 and the over/under’s 41. The Bengals would like nothing more than to spoil the Texans’ playoff party plans. Houston’s dreaming of the playoffs for the second year in a row and they’ll have a lot to say about that. Cincy, you have a problem. Houston covers the 2 and wins in the Lone Star State.

Baltimore (8-6) at Pittsburgh (9-5), 4:30 p.m. Christmas Day on NBC. A pair of AFC North rivals meet in the Steel City on Christmas day as Baltimore travels to Pittsburgh for an afternoon contest with the Steelers at Heinz Field.

The Ravens were 27-26 winners over Philadelphia in Charm City Sunday afternoon. Baltimore trailed 11-10 with 14:38 to play before halftime on a 4-yard TD run by Philadelphia’s Ryan Matthews. Philadelph then took the lead back with 1:39 left in the half when Caleb Sturgis connected on a 34-yard field goal. That lead would not last very long as Ravens WR Steven Smith Sr. and Joe Flacco connected on a 34-yard TD pass with 9 seconds left before the intermission. Sturgis would eventually pull the Eagles to within 7 with a 29-yard field goal with 2:22 left in regulation. After the Ravens punted the ball back to Philly, they used a 9-play, 59-yard drive that used 95 seconds and ended when rookie QB Carson Wentz scrambled into the end zone from 4 yards out to pull to within 6. Philly then went for two in the hopes of taking the lead on the road and saving their playoff hopes but the try for two failed. Matthews led all rushers with 128 yards and the touchdown, while the Eagles outrushed Baltimore 169-151. Wentz threw for 170 yards and had the rushing TD and was picked off once, while Flacco threw for 206 yards and a pair of TDs.

The Steelers trailed Cincinnati 20-9 halftime lead before Pittsburgh chipped away at the lead and came out on top of the Bengals, taking a 24-20. The loss kept the Steelers in the playoff hunt, while elimnating the Bengals. Pittsburgh was held to three Chris Boswell field gals in the first 30 minutes of action before they proceeded to shut out the Bengals in the second half, scoring their final 15 points unchallenged. After Boswell added another field goal, the Steelers took the lead for the first time and for keeps when Pittsburgh QB Ben Roethlisberger (286 yards, TD) and WR Eli Rodgers connected on a 24-yard TD pass with 7:29 left to play. The Bengals were held to 76 yards on the ground, while the Steelers tallied 97 and Andy Dalton threw for 157 yards with an interception for the Bengals.

They met in week nine in Charm City and the Steelers lost to the Ravens 21-14. Baltimore led 13-0 after three quarters of play before the Steelers stormed back to make it a 7-point contest when Roethlisberger scored on a 1-yard run with 48 seconds left. Pittsburgh then tried an onside kick which failed somewhat miserably. The first meeting as far a rushing game was concerned was nothing to write home about, as neither team breached the 100 yard mark (Baltimore had 50, Pittsburgh had 36) and Roethlisberger threw for 264 yards and a TD to Antonio Brown, while Flacco threw for 241 yards and a TD (Roethlisberger was sacked twice, Flacco sacked three times).

Baltimore covered the 1 1/2-point spread with their 7-point win and the two teams combined for 35 points, missing the 44 over/under by 9. Pittsburgh’s favored by 5 and the over/under is 44. Someone is eventually going to be naughty and someone’s going to be eventually nice. Steelers make the nice list as they get revenge on the Ravens nevermore with the win at home and covers the 5.

Denver (8-6) at Kansas City (10-4), 8:30 p.m. Christmas Day on NBC. For the first time since 1971, the Kansas City Chiefs are playing a home game on Christmas Day, as they welcome the Denver Broncos to Arrowhead on a Sunday night.

The defending Super Bowl champs fell to New England and Tom Brady 16-3 at Sports Authority Field on a Sunday that was warm by Denver standars (game time temperature? 18 with a wind chill of 7) The Pats broke a 3-3 tie after the first 15 minutes of action and scored their last 13 points without a challenge from Denver. New England led 10-3 at the intermission and never looked back. Denver was outrushed 136-58 by New England and Brady threw for 188 yards with no TD but did not throw an interception. Denver’s Trevor Seiman threw for 282 but was sacked four times in the loss.

Kansas City found being taken to the wire last Sunday at Arrowhead by Tennessee and came away on the short end of a 19-17 loss at home in the Show-Me State. The Titans trailed 17-7 at the intermission and pulled to within 1 with 3:12 left in regulation when rookie RB Derek Henry scored on a 1-yard run to make it 17-16. Tennesee then went for two to take the lead but Marcus Mariota’s conversion try failed. After a Kansas City punt, the Titans got the ball back and made it all the way to the Chiefs’ 35 yard line, where they set up what would eventually be the game-winning field goal try by Ryan Succup (who kicked for the Chiefs last year). Succop’s first try was short but Kansas City burned a time out to make him think it over. Succop then connected on his second try, a 53-yarder, that sailed through the goal posts as the clock expired. Kansas City outrushed the Titans 158-148 in the chilly air at Arrowhead with a gametime temperature a balmy 1 degree with a wind chill of -9. Mariota threw for 241 yards, while Alex Smith had 163 (both men threw an interception and both were sacked once).

Denver and Kansas City met in the Mile High City in week 12 and the Broncos were 30-27 overtime losers on a Sunday night at Sports Authority Field at Mile High. The defending champs trailed 9-3 at the half, then rallied to take the lead with 3 minutes left when Trevor Siemian and WR Bennie Fowler connected on a 76 yard TD pass. That lead would not last very long as the Chiefs used a 13-play, 75-yard drive that lasted 2:48 when WR Tyreek Hill caught a 3-yard TD pass from Smtih with 12 seconds left. TE Demetrius Harris then tied the contest up when he caught Smith’s 2-point conversion try and that sent the game into overtime. Denver got the ball first in the overtime and scored their first and only points of the extra period when Brian McMannus kicked a 44 yard field goal with 8:51 left. Kansas City’s Chris Santos then responded with a field goal of his own from 37 yards with 4:19 left. The Broncos got the ball back the second time around but could do nothing with it. After a Denver punt, the Chiefs used a 4-play, 32-yard drive that took 61 seconds and ended when Santos connected on his second field goal, which was the game-winner from 34 yards away with 2 seconds left.

Denver outrushed Kansas City in the first meeting in week 12 124-83, while Siemian threw for 368 yards with three TDs but was sacked five times, while Smith threw for 220 yards with six sacks in addition to the one TD pass.

In the week 12 contest in Denver, the defending Super Bowl champs were favored by 3 1/2 and the over/under was 39 1/2. Kansas City won by 3, barely missing the spread. The two teams did manage to cover the over/under with 57 points in the Sunday night overtime contest. This time, the Chiefs are a 4-point favorite at Arrowhead and the over/under’s 37 1/2. Both nunbers make a lot of season The champs are reeling and need some luck. Kansas City is trying to make it to the post season for the second season in a row. The winner is all but assured of a spot in the post-season party, while the loser is all but done. The last time the Chiefs swept Denver? The 2000 season, when the Chiefs took a 23-22 win in Denver and then came home and beat the Broncos 20-7. Denver at the very least lives to fight another day, taking the win at Arrowhead and covering the 4.

Detroit (9-5) at Dallas (12-2), 8:30 p.m. Monday on ESPN. Week 16 closes out as Detroit and Dallas play in the final Monday night contest of the 2016 season. The Lions are looking for a playoff spot, while the Cowboys look to be the top season in the post-season tournament.

Detroit was held to a pair of Matt Prater field goals as they fell to the New York Giants 16-7 at Met Life Stadium. New York’s Eli Manning (201 yards) and WRs Sterling Sterling and Odell Beckham, Jr. connected on the contest’s only TDs in the game and the Giants’ defense held Matthew Stafford (273 yards, interception) and the Lions out of the end zone, stopping them in their final chance to score. New York outrushed Detroit 114-56 and led 10-3 at the half.

On the strength of a 159-yard effort by Ezekiel Elliott, Dallas came away 26-20 winners over Tampa Bay in Arlington last Sunday night. Dallas, who led 17-6 at the half at AT&T Stadium, trailed 20-17 with 4:12 left in the third when Jameis Winston (247 yards, two TDs, two interceptions) and TE Connor Brate connected on a 10-yard TD pass. Dallas roared back to take the lead for keeps with three Dan Bailey field goals in the fourth quarter. Dallas held Tampa Bay to 52 yards on the ground, while the Cowboys’ Elliott ran for a TD that will be talked about for years when he leaped into the Salvation Army kettle behind the endzone (Elliott would not be fined by the league or the team and gave the charity a sizeable donation, Dallas ran for 185 yards in the win in the Lone Star State). Dallas’ Dak Prescott threw for 279 yards as Dallas clinched a playoff spot in the process.

They’ve met 23 times, which includes games played at old Tiger Stadium and the Cotton Bowl and the Cowboys lead the series 12-11. Dallas has outscored Detroit 608-437. Detroit has won the last two meetings in the regular season, coming away 31-30 winners in the Motor City in 2013. Dallas’ last win over Detroit came in the Lone Star State in 2010 by a final of 35-19.

On Monday night, the Lions are 14-16-1 and went 1-1 last year, while the Cowboys are 44-33 and won their only MNF contest in the 2015 campaign.

Dallas is favored by 7 1/2 and the over/under’s 43. Both numbers make sense. While Detroit was waiting to see what Green Bay was doing Saturday afternoon at Lambeau, the Cowboys know that their hay’s in the barn. Dallas wins this one but don’t expect them to cover the 7 1/2.