Holiday Cheer Or Holiday Jeer?

Although the Colts have their playoff seeding set (No. 1), the remaining seeds are still up for grabs. Three teams control the AFC seeding from 2-6, San Diego, Cincinnati and New England. Perhaps it's fitting that for some, Bill Belichick's Patriots could play the role of Santa Claus or the Grinch this holiday weekend.

The Titans and Chargers won't be sharing glad tidings when they square off on Christmas Day in Nashville.

And they aren't the only ones in the NFL who aren't in the holiday spirit.

Tennessee and San Diego have some scores settle dating back to a December 2007 meeting. The Chargers contend that Titans offensive linemen David Stewart and Kevin Mawae intentionally hurt linebacker Shawne Merriman, causing the knee injury that ultimately cost Merriman much of the 2008 season.

The Titans, meanwhile, contend that Merriman took a cheap shot at quarterback Vince Young. Four players ended up being fined for their actions that day, and no one on either side has forgotten.

"Football is a physical game, and that is just the way it is always going to be," Merriman said. "But there is a difference between physical and bull ... and they definitely got some bull ... about them."

The Titans figure to be more bullheaded in their pursuit of a victory. San Diego has wrapped up the AFC West title and has all but clinched a first-round bye. Tennessee, meanwhile, is stuck in the quagmire of six AFC teams with 7-7 records, all scrapping to catch Denver and Baltimore, both 8-6, for the two wild-card berths.

The dislike might extend to both sidelines Friday, but it will be hard for the Chargers to match the Titans' urgency.

Another holiday weekend game that could feature less than warm feelings will be played Sunday in New England, when Jacksonville comes to town.

Former Jaguars star Fred Taylor said he's learned from his time with the Patriots that Jacksonville didn't do enough film work. Jaguars coach Jack Del Rio responded with a veiled shot at Taylor, essentially saying that if Taylor had been a team leader, he should have demanded more video work from his teammates.

The Christmas season's biggest lump of coal in the stocking arrived Monday night in Washington, where the Redskins were pounding by the visiting Cowboys.

"The pressure that comes with playing on the big stage, maybe guys can't handle that part of it," Redskins co-captain London Fletcher said. "It's just very embarrassing."

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