So there's only two weeks left of regular season in the NFL, and this is the last week of the DiS Championship, so kick off this week with a preview of the DiSbowl:
ICT Browns vs. Cirque du Soufflé
The Browns, unlike either of their namesakes, have been the only consistently great team in this league and have the audacity to start Tebow if necessary, such is the strength of this team. They will go in as clear favourites, but Cirque's Chris Johnson and Larry Fitzgerald may have something to say about it! Good luck to both!
next order of business, Playoff Fantasy Challenge who is game? If we have the numbers then I'll set this up if you want? Very simple, you just pick who you think will be the highest scorers in each round of the NFL Playoffs and earn extra points if they belong to the winning/progressing team. Bit of a silly/redemptive fun!
Right, down to business, some big ones this week:
THURSDAY NIGHT FOOTBALL
Texans visit Indianapolis. Texans now successfully in their first playoffs, still have potential seedings to play for, given Baltimore AND Pittsburgh both slipped up as well as Houston (effectively handing New England the number 1 spot AGAIN) so are still in contention for a bye. Indy however are coming off their first win of the season and are looking to salvage something from this shipwreck of a season, and given they have already appropriately "sucked for luck" can concentrate on upsetting a division rival. Indy by 3!
Don't get caught out! the full compliment this week is on Saturday, Christmas Eve!
The obvious highlight here is the New York derby, which promises to be pretty special, given the playoff indications and big-apple rivalry and such. These two have been maddeningly inconsistent, but essentially it boils down to this: An early playoff game. Whoever wins is in, whoever loses goes (well, stays) home. Ima go with Giants, this purely a heart thing though, by 4-5
Other slightly surprising playoff matches:
Oakland visit Kansas, Missouri, in a divisional rivalry matchup in a division where every team is still alive, such is its inconsistency. If Kansas lose they are officially out, but they've just come off beating the undefeated Packers, have a new coach, a great D oh and a guy called Kyle Orton wanting to get back at the Broncos. Oakland have been in free-fall since Carlson Palmer's one good game ratio, so I wouldn't be surprised to see Kansas stick it to them here.
Also, strangely, Arizona at Cincy is between two teams who are still alive, with the Cards getting some big wins on the board. Not really sure where this one will go, but it will probably be fairly high scoring. (Let's say Zona by 4-5 for fun)
Cleveland visit Baltimore, who again are facing them after a public disgrace. Cleveland showed some progress out in the desert last week, but Baltimore are still unbeaten at home, that ain't changing now. Bmore by 7
Denver travel to Buffalo, for Tebow-Time, Winter edition! This will probably be a snowy mess, which doesn't even help the home team that often, and as they are in free-fall, Denver should win this fairly easily. They'll still make it look dramatic for three and a half quarters though.
Miami travel to New England, which will probably also be snowy by now (can anyone confirm?). NE trying to clinch top seed, Miami trying to carry on their great run of form against division rivals. NE by 7.
Tampa Bay lose to Carolina by 4-5
St Louis lose to Pittsburgh by 7+
Jacksonville lose to Tenessee by 4-5
Minnesota lose to Washington by 3
Clear stand-out here is still alive(?!) Philadelphia travelling to Dallas in a game with massive implications. If Philly win they potentially upset the entire division, if Dallas win Philly are out but still have the Giants to contend with. Romo is still losing in December, and the Eagles are finally putting together some late-season form that could still turn into a deep playoff run. Seems mad I know, but that's where we are. (Philly by 3, why not)
Also San Diego are trying to maintain as they travel to Detroit. Two teams vying for respective playoffs, San Diego are on a great run where as Detroit have set a new record for two-touchdown comebacks in a single season with their win away at Oakland last week. This should be very high scoring, very exciting stuff. Detroit can afford to lose slightly more than San Diego, but both will be desperate for this one. (SD by 4-5)
San Fran travel to bitter rivals Seattle, in another match with playoffs at Stake. San Fran have won their division but their bye week is under threat, while Seattle are on terrific form and are still in contention for the wildcard. The Niners are coming off an impressive victory over Pittsburgh though, and should, SHOULD have enough to see this one through. 12th man will be LOUD. SF by 4-5
SUNDAY NIGHT, CHRISTMAS DAY:
So instead of a late game Saturday, this remains on Sunday Night for a xmas day special and its Chicago visiting bitter rivals Green Bay. A couple weeks ago this would have been a cracker, but as it stands Chicago are in free-fall and Green Bay despite the loss are still the best team in the league. Chicago's D will step up for this though because its such a big game, so don't be surprised if this is a very close one. GB by 3
MONDAY NIGHT FOOTBALL
And finally, to cap it all off, we have Atlanta at New Orleans on Boxing Day. This should be a real fun one, Atlanta are back in form and will be desperate to correct that farce last time they played, plus they need the win for a wildcard spot. New Orleans are through, but are still playing for a bye week and still be keen to dispatch a divison rival before the playoffs start. High scorer this, NO by 4-5
Cheers, Merry Christmas