The highly anticipated match between the top teams in the AFC didn’t live up to its billing, and the Giants added to the Packers’ woes. That, on top of a storm delayed show down between Bears and Ravens, Miami continue to stay in the hunt, and Seattle and New Orleans power on.
Ravens @ Bears
After almost two hours’ delay the Chicago Bears got a vital 23-20 win in overtime against a Baltimore team that is now in deep trouble of becoming another team that goes from winning it all to not making the playoffs the next year. The tornados that struck the Midwest made for Soldier Field to be evacuated, but upon their return the Bears did just enough to get a win that ties them on top of the NFC North with just six games to go. Ray Rice had his best day of the season for the Ravens going for 131 yards on the ground, but it was all in vain.
Chargers @ Dolphins
Miami are still alive after holding on to beat San Diego 20-16 in what was really a must win for both teams. Neither team will win their division but both have an outside chance of a wild card, however as Philip Rivers last second pass to the end zone was knocked away, with it their postseason hopes took a huge dent. In a scrappy game with no real consistent play the Dolphins will welcome the win which now brings them level with the Jets in the AFC East.
Packers @ Giants
These two teams going in completely opposite directions. Green Bay has now lost three straight games, in contrast to the New York Giants who have now won four consecutive games, this after losing their first six. This run has put the Giants right in the thick of things in the NFC East. It is of course no coincidence that the Packers have started to slide since their All-Pro QB Aaron Rodgers has been missing with injury, and they are down to their third string passer Scott Tolzien, who had a decent game, going over 300 yards in his second start but his three interceptions were very costly.
Vikings @ Seahawks
The Seattle Seahawks are playing some great football right now, looking as good as the Denver Broncos did earlier in the year. This was another brutal display by their defence, and a peerless display by Russell Wilson, 13-of-18 for 230 yards and two touchdowns, steering the ‘Hawks to a 41-20 win which puts them at the ten-win mark, with one loss. Should they get home field advantage in the NFC, you get the feeling they would have one foot in the New York Super Bowl such is their dominance with the 12th Man.
49ers @ Saints
Down 20-14, there was no sense of panic on the New Orleans sideline, and they managed to contain the San Francisco offence in the last period and gain enough field position to kick three field goals, the last, a game winner, as time expired. This, of course, keeps the Saints in first place in the South division and keeps the pressure up on the Seahawks for home field. San Francisco are faced with a different challenge after losing two very close games to teams that will be in the playoff shake up they are no means sure of postseason play themselves and are now tied for second in the West with the surprising Cardinals.
Chiefs @ Broncos
This was the matchup of the weekend and even though it didn’t completely live up to its billing it did tell us that Denver are still the team to beat in the AFC. Kansas City came into this game as the only unbeaten team in the NFL and played their normal type of game, safe and steady with the occasional deep ball thrown in. Going into Denver was always going to be tricky though, as this was the first major test of their credentials, having played against an array of backup led QBs. Denver jumped up early and never relinquished their lead. The Chiefs, who have won games on the back of their defence, barely touched Peyton Manning which is a recipe for disaster, and the top rated passer who was heavily strapped up due to his ankle sprain was able to pick his passes with ease and lead his team to an easy 27-17 win.