The 2010 NFL betting campaign wrapped up Week 16 on Monday night. Here at Bang the Book, we’ve got you covered for all of the most important news and notes from Week 16 betting action!
Pats in the Driver’s Seat in the AFC: Not that this one was really unexpected, but the New England Patriots were able to lock up the No. 1 seed in the AFC this week by beating up the Buffalo Bills at Ralph Wilson Stadium. It wasn’t exactly a thing of beauty for QB Tom Brady, but a win was a win, and it came by a comfortable margin to beat the NFL Week 16 odds. Now, the road to the Super Bowl in the AFC has to come through Foxboro, where Brady is a perfect 16-0 as a starting quarterback over the course of the last three seasons in the regular season.
Webb Wants to Be Like Mike in Another Weird One for Vikes: Someone has clearly cursed the Minnesota Vikings. A blizzard in the Northeast postponed what would have been a Sunday Night Football betting affair against the Philadelphia Eagles all the way to Tuesday. This marked the third straight game that either had a switched venue and/or a switched day of the game for the Vikes. The good news for Minnesota is that it probably played its best game of the season on Tuesday. QB Joe Webb was running and throwing the ball all over the field, and he virtually single handedly knocked off the Eagles in very convincing fashion. The 24-14 upset as 14 point underdogs marked the biggest upset of the entire season, and it ensured that the NFC East champs would be the No. 3 seed in the playoffs.
Bears on Bye After Wild Win Over Jets: They didn’t know it at the time, but the win for the Chicago Bears on Sunday against the New York Jets ensured that they would be no worse than the No. 2 seed in the playoffs. QB Jay Cutler threw three TD passes, two of which went to WR Johnny Knox on the day to help beat the Jets, who still clinched a playoff berth anyway by virtue of the loss by the Jacksonville Jaguars against the Washington Redskins.
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Chargers Bolted Out of the Playoffs: All of the naysayers of the Kansas City Chiefs out there can officially shut up. Arrowhead Stadium was absolutely overjoyed on Sunday when the fans watched their hometown team knock the Tennessee Titans and Oakland Raiders out of playoff contention in one swoop with a dominating victory. However, the big news of the day in this division came out of the San Diego Chargers, who were shockingly destroyed at Paul Brown Stadium by the Cincinnati Bengals, one of the lowliest teams in the NFL. The loss ended any hope of San Diego capturing the AFC West and eliminated it from playoff contention. In spite of the fact that the Bolts did not make the playoffs this year and might not finish above .500, the jobs of both GM Rick Smith and Head Coach Norv Turner have reportedly been considered safe.
Singletary No More in the Bay: The brass of the San Francisco 49ers finally had enough. A loss to the St. Louis Rams, highlighted by a shouting match between Head Coach Mike Singletary and QB Troy Smith on the sidelines was enough to finally get the head coach of the team dismissed. We know that there are going to be sweeping changes in San Francisco next year after this miserable campaign, but the loss to the Rams officially ended any playoff hopes and caused the team to make the change. The interim man in charge will be Jim Tomsula, the defensive line coach, who already claimed that he will be winning his first ever game as a head coach in this league even though it is a meaningless duel against the Arizona Cardinals.
AFC Playoff Picture: Here’s the picture in the AFC going into Week 17…
New England Patriots: The Pats have won the AFC East and are the No. 1 seed in the playoffs, holding home field advantage throughout.
New York Jets: New York clinched a playoff berth on Sunday, and it will be the No. 5 seed in the playoffs with a win, a loss by Pittsburgh, and a win by Baltimore. Anything less would leave it as the No. 6 seed.
Pittsburgh Steelers: The Steelers are in the playoffs and will clinch the AFC North, the No. 2 seed, and a first round bye with a win or a Baltimore loss on Sunday. A loss, a Baltimore win, and a New York loss makes Pittsburgh the No. 5 seed. A loss, a Baltimore win, and a New York wins makes Pittsburgh the No. 6 seed.
Baltimore Ravens: The Ravens are in the playoffs and will clinch the AFC North, the No. 2 seed, and a first round bye with a win and a Pittsburgh loss on Sunday. A loss gives Baltimore the No. 5 seed in the playoffs.
Indianapolis Colts: The Colts win the AFC South and clinch a first round home game with a win or a Jacksonville loss on Sunday. A loss and a Jacksonville loss eliminates Indy from the playoffs, but a win and a Kansas City loss earns Indy the No. 3 seed.
Jacksonville Jaguars: A win and an Indianapolis loss is the only way Jacksonville gets into the playoffs. The Jags are the No. 4 seed as the AFC South champs if that’s the case, but are out of the playoffs with anything less.
Kansas City Chiefs: The Chiefs are already in the playoffs as the AFC West champs. A win or an Indianapolis loss earns the No. 3 seed in the playoffs. A loss and an Indianapolis win leaves it at No. 4.
NFC Playoff Picture: Here’s the picture in the NFC going into Week 17…
Philadelphia Eagles: The Eagles are locked into the No. 3 seed in the playoffs.
New York Giants: The Giants need a win and a loss by Green Bay to get into the playoffs as the No. 6 seed. Anything less eliminates them from the playoffs.
Chicago Bears: The Bears already have a first round bye and the NFC North title wrapped up, but can move up from No. 2 to No. 1 with a win, a New Orleans loss, and an Atlanta loss on Sunday.
Green Bay Packers: Green Bay holds its own destiny. A win or losses by both New York and Tampa Bay would earn the No. 6 seed and a visit to Philadelphia in the Wild Card round of the playoffs. Anything less eliminates the Packers from the playoffs.
Atlanta Falcons: The Falcons win the No. 1 seed and a first round bye in the playoffs with either a win or losses by both Chicago and New Orleans. A loss and a New Orleans win leaves the Falcons as the No. 5 seed in the playoffs, while a loss, a New Orleans loss, and a Chicago wins gives them the No. 2 seed.
New Orleans Saints: The Saints clinched a playoff berth in Week 16. They’ll be the No. 1 seed in the playoffs with a win and a loss by Atlanta. Anything less leaves it as the No. 5 seed.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers: The Bucs are in the most trouble of any team in the NFC. They’ll get in the playoffs with a win, a Green Bay loss, and a New York loss. Anything less leaves them outside of the playoffs.
Seattle Seahawks and St. Louis Rams: These two teams will meet on Sunday Night Football in Week 17. The winner of this game will be the No. 4 seed in the playoffs and host a first round home game. The loser will be eliminated.
Top Passers: No one had a finer day in the entire league in Week 16 than Green Bay’s Aaron Rodgers. He threw for 404 yards and four TDs and was the reason that the Packers kept their season alive in a massive triumph over New York. Denver’s Tim Tebow tore apart the Houston secondary for 308 yards and a TD on Sunday for his first career win as well. Other 300+ yard passers in Week 16 include Pittsburgh’s Ben Roethlisberger (320), Kansas City’s Matt Cassel (314), Houston’s Matt Schaub (310), New Orleans’ Drew Brees (302), and New York’s Eli Manning (301).
Running All Over the Competition: Only four men ended up rushing for at least 100 yards in Week 16. Tampa Bay’s LeGarrette Blount might not have scored a TD, but he did have 164 yards against the Seahawks and helped keep the Bucs’ season alive. Minnesota’s Adrian Peterson had 118 yards and a TD in a game against the Eagles in which he really wasn’t even supposed to play. Chicago’s Matt Forte rumbled for 113 yards on 19 carries with a score and became the second straight back to pick up 100+ yards against the Jets’ defense after they didn’t allow a 100+ yard rusher in 20 straight games. Finally, New England’s BenJarvus Green-Ellis had a 100+ yard day, toting the rock 19 times for 104 yards.
Receiving the Top Prizes: This was the best week in the NFL for 100+ yard receivers, as a whopping 14 men got the job done for their teams. In Kansas City, the man who has the most receiving TDs in the league, Dwayne Bowe added to his total by catching a score as a part of his six receptions for 153 yards. Meanwhile in Green Bay, both Greg Jennings (7 catches, 142 yards) and Jordy Nelson (4 catches, 124 yards, 1 TD) reached the century mark in receiving. Others that pulled off the same stunt this week include New York’s Mario Manningham (132), Cincinnati’s Jerome Simpson (124), San Fran’s Michael Crabtree (122), Dallas’ Miles Austin (115), Houston’s Jacoby Jones (115), Denver’s Brandon Lloyd (111), Arizona’s Andre Roberts (110), Pittsburgh’s Mike Wallace (104), Miami’s Brandon Marshall (102), New Orleans’ Robert Meachem (101), and Minnesota’s Percy Harvin (100).
Season Long Awards: Seven newcomers hit the charts for 3,000 yard passers this week, none more notable than Philly’s Michael Vick. Others include Miami’s Chad Henne, Tampa Bay’s Josh Freeman, Chicago’s Jay Cutler, Seattle’s Matt Hasselbeck, Kansas City’s Matt Cassel, and Buffalo’s Ryan Fitzpatrick. Interestingly enough, there were no new players to add to the list of 1,000 yard rushers, and there is a real threat to only be about 15 men that reach this illustrious mark this year. There are now the same number of 1,000 yard receivers as rushers in the league, with several new names coming onto the list. It’s about time that Kansas City’s Dwayne Bowe made his mark on this list. Others include New York’s Hakeem Nicks, Washington’s Santana Moss, Arizona’s Larry Fitzgerald, and Buffalo’s Steve Johnson.
3,000 Yard Passers
Peyton Manning (4,436)
Drew Brees (4,424)
Philip Rivers (4,397)
Matt Schaub (4,117)
Eli Manning (3,759)
Tom Brady (3,701)
Aaron Rodgers (3,693)
Carson Palmer (3,665)
Kyle Orton (3,653)
Joe Flacco (3,497)
Matt Ryan (3,469)
Donovan McNabb (3,377)
Sam Bradford (3,357)
Mark Sanchez (3,291)
Chad Henne (3,230)
Josh Freeman (3,196)
Jay Cutler (3,106)
Michael Vick (3,018)
Matt Hasselbeck (3,001)
Matt Cassel (3,011)
Ryan Fitzpatrick (3,000)
1,000 Yard Rushers
Arian Foster (1,436)
Jamaal Charles (1,380)
Chris Johnson (1,325)
Maurice Jones-Drew (1,324)
Michael Turner (1,304)
Adrian Peterson (1,267)
Rashard Mendenhall (1,237)
Ahmad Bradshaw (1,213)
Steven Jackson (1,196)
Peyton Hillis (1,164)
Darren McFadden (1,157)
Ray Rice (1,143)
LeSean McCoy (1,080)
Cedric Benson (1,058)
1,000 Yard Receivers
Brandon Lloyd (1,375)
Roddy White (1,327)
Reggie Wayne (1,287)
Andre Johnson (1,216)
Greg Jennings (1,168)
Mike Wallace (1,152)
Calvin Johnson (1,120)
Dwayne Bowe (1,095)
DeSean Jackson (1,056)
Hakeem Nicks (1,052)
Santana Moss (1,041)
Marques Colston (1,023)
Larry Fitzgerald (1,012)
Steve Johnson (1,001)