NFL Today, Week 17
Saturday, Jan. 5
Minnesota at Green Bay (8 p.m.). The NFC North rivals meet six days
after the Vikings' 37-34 win gave them a playoff berth and helped keep
the Packers from getting a first-round bye.
-Eli Manning, Giants, was 13 for 21 for 208 yards and a career-high
five touchdown passes in New York's 42-7 win over Philadelphia.
-Peyton Manning, Broncos, was 23 for 29 for 304 yards and three TD
passes in Denver's 38-3 win over Kansas City. It was Manning's 73rd
game with at least three TDs. Manning passed Brett Favre (72) for the
most such games in NFL history.
-Aaron Rodgers, Packers, was 28 for 40 for 365 yards with 4 TD passes
in Green Bay's 37-34 loss to Minnesota.
-Tom Brady, Patriots, finished 22 for 36 for 284 yards with 2 TD passes
in New England's 28-0 win over Miami. Brady moved into second place in
NFL history with a touchdown pass in 48 consecutive games, breaking a
tie with Hall of Famer Johnny Unitas. And Brady became the first player
to throw at least one scoring pass in all 16 games for three straight
-Colin Kaepernick, 49ers, was 16 for 28 for 276 yards with 2 TD passes
in San Francisco's 27-13 win over Arizona.
-Drew Brees, Saints, finished 29 for 43 for 396 yards with four
touchdown passes and an interception in New Orleans' 44-38 loss to
Carolina. Brees has 5,177 yards this season, third most behind the 2011
totals of himself (5,476) and New England's Brady (5,235). Brees became
the first player to eclipse 5,000 yards three times. His four TD passes
gave him 43 in 2012, and he's the first player with 40 TD passes in
-Matthew Stafford, Lions, was 24 for 42 for 272 yards with three
touchdown passes and an interception in Detroit's 26-24 loss to
Chicago. He finished the season with an NFL-record 727 pass attempts,
surpassing Drew Bledsoe's mark of 691 from 1994.
-Adrian Peterson, Vikings, had 34 carries for 199 yards and a touchdown
in Minnesota's 37-34 win over Green Bay. Peterson finished with 2,097
yards, the second most in a season, and 9 yards shy of breaking Hall of
Famer Eric Dickerson's record (2,105 in 1984). Peterson got his seventh
150-yard rushing game of the season, tied with Hall of Famer Earl
Campbell (seven in 1980) for the most in a season in NFL history.
-DeAngelo Williams, Panthers, had 21 carries for 210 yards and two
touchdowns in Carolina's 44-38 win over New Orleans.
-Alfred Morris, Redskins, had 33 carries for 200 yards and three
touchdowns in Washington's 28-18 victory over Dallas. Morris set the
franchise single-season rushing record. The Redskins clinched the NFC
East title and will face the Seattle Seahawks next Sunday.
-Doug Martin, Buccaneers, had 28 carries for 142 yards and a touchdown
in Tampa Bay's 22-17 win over Atlanta.
-Ahmad Bradshaw, Giants, had 16 carries for 107 yards and a touchdown
in New York's 42-7 win over Philadelphia.
-Matt Forte, Bears, had 24 carries for 103 yards and a touchdown in
Chicago's 26-24 win over Detroit.
-Michael Crabtree, 49ers, had eight catches for 172 yards and two
touchdowns in San Francisco's 27-13 win over Arizona.
-Michael Floyd, Cardinals, had eight catches for 166 yards and a
touchdown in Arizona's 27-13 loss to San Francisco.
-Andre Johnson, Texans, had 12 catches for 141 yards in Houston's 28-16
loss to Indianapolis. He became the second player in league history
with three seasons of 100 or more catches and 1,500 or more yards. The
other was former Colt Marvin Harrison.
-Lance Moore and Jimmy Graham, Saints. Moore had four catches for 121
yards and Graham had nine catches for 115 yards and a touchdown in New
Orleans' 44-38 loss to Carolina.
-T.Y. Hilton, Colts, had four catches for 111 yards and a touchdown in
Indianapolis' 28-16 win over Houston.
-Steve Johnson, Bills, had six catches for 111 yards in Buffalo's 28-9
win over the New York Jets. Johnson is the first Bills player to
surpass 1,000 yards in three straight years.
-Earl Bennett, Bears, had five catches for 109 yards and a touchdown in
Chicago's 26-24 win over Detroit.
-Darius Reynaud, Titans, returned punts of 81 yards and 69 yards for
touchdowns in Tennessee's 38-20 win over Jacksonville.
-Deji Karim, Colts, returned a kickoff 101 yards for a touchdown in
Indianapolis' 28-16 win over Houston.
-Micheal Spurlock, Chargers, returned a kickoff 99 yards for a
touchdown in San Diego's 24-21 win over Oakland.
-Mike Harris, Jaguars, returned a blocked punt 19 yards for a touchdown
in Jacksonville's 38-20 loss to Tennessee.
-Olindo Mare, Bears, was 4 of 5 on field goal in Chicago's 26-24 win
-Zach Brown, Titans, returned interceptions of 79 yards and 30 yards
for touchdowns in Tennessee's 38-20 win over Jacksonville.
-Bryan Scott, Bills, returned an interception 20 yards for a touchdown
in Buffalo's 28-9 win over the New York Jets.
-Jonathan Vilma, Saints, returned an interception 18 yards for a
touchdown in New Orleans' 44-38 loss to Carolina.
-Carlos Dunlap, Bengals, returned an interception 14 yards for a
touchdown in Cincinnati's 23-17 win over Baltimore.
-Justin Francis, Patriots, had three sacks in New England's 28-0 win
-Chris Long, Rams, had three sacks in St. Louis' 20-13 loss to Seattle.
-Everson Griffen, Vikings, had three sacks in Minnesota's 37-34 win
over Green Bay.
RG3 and the Washington Redskins are heading to the playoffs as NFC East
By winning their seventh straight game, the Redskins rolled to their
first division title in 13 years with a 28-18 victory over the Dallas Cowboys on Sunday night. Next up for Robert Griffin III & Co.:
a home playoff matchup next Sunday with the Seahawks - the third
straight postseason game for Washington against Seattle.
''It's just a mindset change,'' the rookie quarterback said. ''When you
have all these guys coming to work every day, putting it on the line,
we knew we couldn't afford to lose one game, we made sure we didn't''
Thanks to Houston's late-season slump, Denver and New England will have
byes when the AFC playoffs begin next week.
The Texans fell from first to third in the conference Sunday when they
lost 28-16 at Indianapolis, which welcomed back coach Chuck Pagano
after nearly three months of treatments for leukemia.
AFC West champion Denver won its 11th straight game, 38-3 over Kansas
City to secure the top seed. New England blanked Miami 28-0 for the
Minnesota edged Green Bay 37-34 to grab the final NFC wild card,
sinking the Packers to the third seed. Those teams will meet again next
Saturday night at Lambeau Field.
The other NFC matchup will have Seattle (11-5), which beat St. Louis
20-13, at Washington on Sunday at 4:30 p.m. ET.
Cincinnati (10-6) will be at Houston on Saturday at 4:30 p.m. ET, and
Indianapolis (11-5) goes to at Baltimore (10-6) on Sunday at 1 p.m. in
the AFC wild-card rounds.
The divisional round games will be hosted by Denver on Saturday, Jan.
12, followed by San Francisco (11-4-1) at night. On Sunday, Jan. 13,
Atlanta (13-3) will host the early game, followed by New England (12-4).
Rookie quarterbacks Andrew Luck of Indianapolis and Russell Wilson of
Seattle each led his team to a victory on Sunday. Luck and Wilson each
have 11 wins, joining Ben Roethlisberger (13 in 2004), Joe Flacco (11
in 2008) and Matt Ryan (11 in 2008) as the only rookie starting
quarterbacks in the Super Bowl era to win at least 11 games. Luck is
the only rookie quarterback in NFL history with at least 4,000 yards
passing (4,374) and 10 wins (11). Wilson threw 26 touchdown passes and
tied Peyton Manning (1998) for the most TDs passing by a rookie in NFL
MANY HAPPY RETURNS
The Tennessee Titans became the first team in NFL history with two
interception return touchdowns and two punts returned for touchdowns in
the same game in the Titans' 38-20 win over Jacksonville. Rookie
linebacker Zach Brown had both interception runbacks (79 and 30 yards)
and Darius Reynaud had both punt returns for touchdowns (69 and 81
The Seahawks were the only team to finish undefeated at home this
season. ... The Bengals had four sacks, giving them a franchise-record
51 for the season. ... Tennessee set a franchise mark for most points
allowed in a season with 471, worst in the NFL this season. ... The
Saints (7-9) gave up 530 yards, raising their season total to 7,042 to
break the old record of 6,793 allowed by the 1981 Baltimore Colts. The
Saints' Marques Colston had five catches to give him 532, tied for
first in franchise history with Eric Martin. ... Thaddeus Lewis is the
18th quarterback to start for the Browns since 1999. ... Indy (11-5)
completed the second-greatest turnaround in league history - winning
nine more games than it did in 2011. ... The Falcons' Tony Gonzalez
reached 90 catches to become the first NFL tight end with five seasons
of 90 or more receptions. Falcons QB Matt Ryan's TD pass gave him a
team-record 32 for the season. Steve Bartkowski threw 31 TD passes in
1980. ... 49ers running back Frank Gore ran for a 2-yard score early in
the fourth quarter for his franchise-best 51st touchdown rushing,
breaking a tie with mentor Roger Craig and late Hall of Famer Joe Perry.
The Broncos closed the regular season with their 11th consecutive win.
All 11 wins have been by at least seven points and the Broncos joined
the 2005 Indianapolis Colts (13) and 1942 Chicago Bears (11) as the
only teams to win at least 11 games in a row by a margin of seven
points or more in a single season. ... The Rams' Steven Jackson also
went over 1,000 yards rushing for the eighth straight season, becoming
just the sixth player in NFL history to accomplish that feat. ... The
Giants missed the playoffs this season. This marks the seventh straight
season the Super Bowl champion has failed to win a playoff game the
following year. ... The Bears became only the second club since the
postseason expanded to 12 teams to miss out after a 7-1 start,
according to STATS. The other was Washington in 1996. ... The Panthers
closed the season winning four straight and five out of six. ... The
Jets closed their second consecutive season with three straight losses,
and capped their worst finish since going 4-12 in 2007. They've gone
14-18 since playing in successive AFC title games. ... The Bills
finished fourth in the AFC East for a fifth straight time while
extending their postseason drought to 13 years. ... The Lions (4-12)
lost their last eight games. ... The Cardinals (5-11) ended the season
with 11 losses in their last 12 games. ... The Seahawks have won seven
of eight, including a five-game winning streak to close the season.
They won at least 11 games for just the third time in franchise
history. ... The Dolphins (7-9) finished with a losing record for the
fourth straight season. ... The Patriots won their sixth straight game
against the Dolphins and finished with 11 wins in their last 12 games.
The Atlanta Falcons hope they won't be without a few key defensive
stars in the playoffs. Defensive end John Abraham, the Falcons' top
pass rusher, left with an apparent left ankle injury in the fourth
quarter of Atlanta's 22-17 loss to Tampa Bay on Sunday. Abraham
couldn't put his weight on the ankle as he was helped off the field.
Abraham's injury came after starting cornerback Dunta Robinson suffered
a head injury in the first quarter and did not return. His helmet hit
Doug Martin on the running back's 3-yard gain. Robinson walked off the
field and was escorted to the locker room. ... Indianapolis lost
starting guard Joe Reitz in the first half of the Colts' 28-16 win at
Houston with a head injury. Texans linebacker Daryl Sharpton left with
a hip injury, while fellow linebacker Tim Dobbins left in the second
half with what coach Gary Kubiak thought was a shoulder injury. ...
Cincinnati safety Chris Crocker hurt his right thigh while trying to
make a tackle in the first quarter of the Bengals' 23-17 win over
Baltimore and didn't return. He said the injury wasn't serious. ...
Chicago tight end Matt Spaeth left the Bears' 26-24 win over Detroit
with a concussion.
''Chuck's like a dad to me. He means a lot to me. I would have much
rather seen them in the AFC championship game than the first game'' -
Ravens safety Ed Reed on facing Colts head coach and former Ravens
defensive coordinator Chuck Pagano in the first round of the playoffs
''It wasn't meant to happen, or it would've happened. Not to say it
doesn't hurt, because it does.'' - Vikings running back Adrian Peterson
on falling short of Eric Dickerson's single-season rushing record of
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