Monday, December 21, 2015
What Week 17 Game Should Be Flexed
Week 15 is nearly over (the Lions and Saints face off Monday night in the week's finale) and the end of the season is near. What game could be the flex game in Week 17 and the final game of the regular season? The NFL likes to have a game with a lot on the line (mainly a playoff spot up for grabs).
1-EAGLES AT GIANTS: The NFC East has practically owned the final game of the regular season slot since its inception. This season could be no different. Now, a lot of things have to happen for this to be the game. First, the Eagles need to beat the Redskins this coming Saturday. If the Redskins win that game, they win the NFC East and this game is moot. However, an Eagles win puts them in the driver's seat. If the Giants also win this coming weekend (a hard task at Minnesota), then this could be for all the marbles. The only risk comes is if the Redskins lose to the Cowboys in Week 17 (after a Giants loss in Week 16), then this game could be meaningless as the Eagles would clinch prior to the game.
2-JAGUARS AT TEXANS: This could be for the AFC South championship. First off, the Texans could need this win to clinch the division. But, like other games, its relevance could depend on the fortune of another team (this time the Colts). But, if the Jaguars find a way to win Week 16 and the Texas and Colts lose Week 16, then this game is guaranteed to mean something. See, a Texans and Colts loss plus a Jags win in Week 16 means that Houston is 7-8, Indy is 6-9 and Jacksonville is 6-9 entering the final week. The Colts result earlier in the day wouldn't spoil this game at all. Colts win and this game comes down to the Texans/Colts for the division. A Colts loss means this game would be for the AFC South championship between the Texans and Jaguars.
3-VIKINGS AT PACKERS: Could be for the NFC North crown. However, both teams may already be in the playoffs by then so all this would be for is the division. But, Minnesota may not be a playoff team ... yet. Of course, that would take a miracle of the Vikings losing to the Giants in Week 16, the Seahawks losing their last two games and the Falcons winning their last two games (one of which is against the Panthers).
4-BUCCANEERS AT PANTHERS: If there isn't a guarantee of a playoff spot anywhere, you could see the NFL elect to go with the 16-0 storyline. Carolina's pursuit for the second 16-0 regular season in history could be the feast of the night. I wouldn't blame them. However, the NFL would try to demand the Panthers attempt to for the undefeated season and not just rest their starters.
5-REDSKINS AT COWBOYS: I doubt this would be the game. If the Redskins beat Philly this Saturday, they clinch the NFC East. A Redskins loss and the Eagles control the division. Putting this game on Sunday night is risky because an Eagles win earlier in the day would eliminate Washington.