Nothing was proven yesterday by the Bears getting the shit-kicked out of them in a blizzard by the best team in the NFL. To say that yesterday's loss somehow invalidates what the Bears have accomplished to this point would be to say that the Jets, Steelers, Ravens, Chargers or any of the other teams that have failed to slow down Tom Brady all suck as well. The Bears are like any other team that's won a lot of close games. People will see what they want to see. No one knows the future. As one of the few people who predicted the Bears would even be in the position to make the playoffs this year, I'm going to say that predicting the outcome of this season is a futile endeavor. The Bears can clinch the division with a Packers loss to New England and a win over the Vikings this week. That gets them in. Once they're in, well, they're as good as any other team in a flawed NFC, considering that the two glamour teams that everyone seems to love (the Eagles and Packers) have already been beaten by the Bears or, in Green Bay's case, are unlikely to make it to the dance at this point. If they make it as the NFC's representative in the Super Bowl, well, that's a problem I'll be happy to worry about in a few weeks.
Onto the recaps:
Colts 30, Titans 28
Tennessee was kind enough not to intercept Manning and the Colts held on for a two point win. How the hell they gave up 28 points to Kerry Collins is another matter. The Jags and Colts meet this week with the division on the line. Let's go Jags!
Bills 13, Browns 6
Impressive, really. Jake Delhoome can sabotage a team badly enough to come within one point of a loss to Carolina and lose to the Bills. The man is staring at a 10-25 TD:INT ratio in the last two years and STILL might start over Seneca Wallace next week if Colt McCoy isn't healthy. How the f&%k does that make any sense? I'm sorry, Cleveland. I really am.
Lions 7, Packers 3
That's just awesome. That is so awesome. I've never seen a final score so awesome. Awesome. Packers fans, you deserve nothing better than this. I've never seen a fanbase so arrogantly confident in their own greatness before their team even took the damn field. As for the media that so arrogantly assumed everything was setting up for an inevitable division clinching win by the Packers in Lambeau? Ha. The Bears can render that game a moot point this week. Hopefully that game now represents the Bears extinguishing the dimming playoff hopes of that overhyped charade of a team.
Steelers 23, Bengals 7
Guh. The Bengals are back to Akili Smith/Mike Shula levels of bad.
Buccaneers 17, Redskins 16
I'm going to wholeheartedly root for circumstances to allow the Bucs into the playoffs. That is the team I want the Bears facing in January.
Falcons 31, Panthers 10
Sky is blue.
Jaguars 38, Raiders 31
Thank you, Jacksonville. That should about do it for the Raiders, now that San Diego and Kansas City have made that a two-team race.
Saints 31, Rams 13
Why is no one afraid of the Saints? Or even mentioning them? I feel like everyone's already handed their NFC crown to the Falcons or Eagles and seem to be neglecting the existence of a very-alive defending champion. The road to the Superbowl on the Halas' side still runs through New Orleans until they're eliminated, as far as I'm concerned.
49ers 40, Seahawks 14
God help us all, Singletary could still win that f*&king travesty of a division.
Dolphins 10, Jets 6
Two QBs through their first 28 career starts:
QB A: 464/854 (54.3%), 4956 yds, 5.8 YPA, 177.0 YPG, 22 TDs, 23 INTs, 68.9 Rating.
QB B: 431/805 (53.3%), 5296 yds, 6.6 YPA, 189.1 YPG, 28 TDs, 32 INTs, 69.1 Rating.
QB A? Rick Mirer. QB B? Mark Sanchez, aka Rico Mirerez. Who called it? THIS GUY.
Cardinals 43, Broncos 13
I'm so thankful the AFC and NFC Wests collide this year. We get an answer to shit like "which last place team in the worst division of each conference is shittier?" The answer? Josh McDaniel's smoldering aftermath. My god, he fucked a franchise badly enough to leave it vulnerable to a 30 point beatdown by an Arizona Cardinals squad that didn't even get a passing TD. Jay Feely, the kicker, had 5 field goals and TD run on a fake. That's 22 points for the kicker and 13 for the Denver Broncos. Ha. Ha. Ha. Ha. Ha.
Chargers 31, Chiefs 0
San Diego is clearly the better team, but they've farted away too many opportunities. Looking at their schedules, both teams are likely to win out. That leaves San Diego out of the playoffs barring a collapse by the Ravens and Jets (always a possibility!)
Eagles 30, Cowboys 27
The Eagles defense isn't that good. That'll keep them from the Superbowl.
Giants 21, Vikings 3
Well, I was totally wrong in saying the Vikings should bench Favre. They just shouldn't field a team at all.
Ravens 34, Texans 28
That was the entire Texans franchise in microcosm. An early beatdown, a surprising offensive resurgence as they erased a 21 point deficit to tie the game at 28, then a total nut punch as they throw the pick six to lose. The best part? The Texans will probably fire Gary Kubiak and send him straight to the Broncos, where he will continue their decade long run of slightly above average offenses and abominable defense.