NFL recap week 16: ‘Tis the season

WASHINGTON – It’s the holiday season. It’s a season of giving, fellowship, and merriment.

So I’m giving you an abbreviated NFL Recap this week for fellowship with my friends and family. Merriment may or may not be involved. But that’s kind of my call, isn’t it?

Anyways, I thought I’d do something different for this recap since it falls on Christmas Eve. Here’s the 12 Days of Christmas, NFL Recap style.

On the first day of Christmas, the NFL gave to me:

  • 12 Brees interceptions
  • 11 Panther victories
  • 10 Shady (McCoy) touchdowns
  • 9 hot seat coaches
  • 8 starts for Keenum
  • 7 Wild card eligibles
  • 6 game slide for Cleveland
  • 5 Saints road losses
  • 4 Peyton records
  • 3 Redskin victories
  • 2 divisions open
  • …and a recap of Week 16.

Happy Holidays!

Cowboys 24 Redskins 23

Washington broke Tony Romo’s back, held a late nine point lead and still found a way to lose. Unless he’s got a hot tub time machine, there’s literally nothing Mike Shanahan can do to keep his job.

Saints 13

Panthers 17

This was sweet for Carolina: Clinch a playoff spot, make a statement at a division rival’s expense and avenge your worst loss of the season. Nobody wants to see this Panthers defense paired with Cam Newton in the postseason.

Dolphins 0

Bills 19

If Buffalo played like this all year, they’d be the ones in the mix for a wild card spot in the AFC instead of Miami.

Vikings 14

Bengals 42

Cincinnati is in the postseason for the third straight year and the fourth time in five years. If Andy Dalton keeps playing like this, they may actually win a playoff game this time around.

Colts 23

Chiefs 7

Ironically, Kansas City seemed to take a page out of Indy’s book: Coast to the regular season finish line after clinching a playoff spot. The Chiefs better not keep it up, or else their postseason stay will be brief — like so many Colts teams of the 2000s.

Bucs 13

Rams 23

Memo to Chris Long: If you’re carrying the coach of your 7-8, non-playoff team off the field then yes…by definition, you do carry any jackwagon off the field.

Browns 13

Jets 24

If this is how New York plays when they think their coach is getting fired, Rex Ryan might have bought himself another year coaching the Jets.

Titans 20

Jaguars 16

Who cares?

Broncos 37

Texans 13

Just to hammer home the point that Peyton Manning is in the midst of the greatest single season performance by a quarterback in NFL history, old #18 threw touchdown pass #51 to set a new league record. For those keeping score at home, he’s now 43 completions and 267 yards from setting new NFL records in those categories. Amazing.

Giants 23

Lions 20 (OT)

Coach Jim Schwartz may not consider Detroit’s 2013 season a failure, but it really is. Getting mathematically eliminated from the playoffs when you play in a division where .500 ball could win you the NFC North is definitely a fireable offense.

Cardinals 17

Seahawks 10

Arizona made a huge statement here: We’re good, we’re balanced, and we stopped Seattle’s 14-game home win streak. That’s the calling card you want going into the playoffs.

Steelers 38

Packers 31

Give both of these teams credit. Neither has any business still sniffing around a playoff spot, yet Green Bay and Pittsburgh have overcome injuries and a lack of depth to stay relevant. That’s why these are two of the most storied and enviable franchises in the NFL.

Raiders 13

Chargers 26

No matter what happens next week, this has been a good year in San Diego. They’re still alive in the playoff race heading into Week 17, which is more than we could say for this franchise the last two seasons. The future is bright for the Chargers.

Patriots 41

Ravens 7

New England is the first team since the AFL/NFL merger to win a 10th title in 11 years — something they knew before this one even kicked off. Meanwhile, Baltimore was still in play for the AFC North title but played like the team with nothing to play for. Given there’s no hope of seeing the Giants in the Super Bowl, this might just be New England’s year.

Bears 11

Eagles 54

Philly’s beatdown of Cutler and Company ensures they’ll play Sunday Night Football consecutive weeks. Expect a repeat performance to win the NFC East against the Romo-less Cowboys.

Falcons 24

Niners 34

Great way to close out Candlestick. If Jim Harbaugh keeps wearing those cleats, San Fran might have another game or two there.

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