Coming into Sunday, the defending Super Bowl champion Philadelphia Eagles found themselves in need of a win and some help in order to make it back into the playoffs. The Eagles did what they had to do, despite losing QB Nick Foles due to an apparent chest injury, by defeating the slumping Washington Redskins 24-0. Oh, and Foles completed 25 passes in a row before that happened, showing just how good he’s playing and how badly they’ll need him going forward. They then needed some help from the Chicago Bears, who were facing off against the Minnesota Vikings. The Vikings laid an egg and fell 24-10 in the game, gifting the Eagles a second chance, and allowing them to sneak in. They will be the #6 seed this year, far different from the #1 seed they were in last season’s NFC Playoffs, but they won’t care much after having only a 16% chance of making them at the start of the month. Their opponent will be the aforementioned Bears in Chicago next weekend in a Wild Card Game.
Elsewhere, more big games were being played. Much to no one’s surprise, the New England Patriots found their way toward a first round bye- yet again- by hammering the New York Jets (go figure) 38-3. The Pats will be the #2 seed, with the Kansas City Chiefs taking the #1 seed in the AFC, giving each a chance to rest and recover a bit. In the most intense action of the day time games, the Pittsburgh Steelers were watching on as the Cleveland Browns attempted to come back and defeat the Baltimore Ravens. Had the Browns won, with the Steelers watching on after a win against the Bengals that reminds you of Manchester United watching their own rivals beat them, it would have been the Yellow and Black moving on. Instead, the Ravens held on to beat the Browns 26-24 as CJ Mosley’s interception sealed the win along with the rest of their vaunted defense. That puts them in the #4 place in the AFC. The Steelers would need to await and hope, with fingers crossed, that the night cap would end in a tie.
That’s because the biggest game of the week was a game with everything on the line. It was a de facto playoff game between the Tennessee Titans and the Indianapolis Colts. The Colts came into the game on fire, but were going to have to do it in Nashville. The winner would be the #6 seed in the AFC, the loser would be out. If there were a tie, the Steelers would make it, improbably. In the end, it was the Colts that won the game on the road, comfortably, by a score of 33-17. The quarterback play for the Titans just hasn’t been good enough, and Andrew Luck and Indy took full advantage. He had three TD throws and 285 yards on the night, helping his team to their ninth win in the last ten games to turn around a dreadful 1-5 start.