It’s that time of the NFL season where the elite teams can start taking their feet off the pedal. Division titles and playoff berths were clinched across the league on Sunday, but no team from Florida was locking anything up.
We’ll start in Buffalo, as the Jacksonville Jaguars came in off their their second win of the season over the Titans. But the Buffalo Bills rained on their parade, as they put up 34 to Jacksonville’s 18.
The Bills looked to keep their slim playoff hopes alive, while the Jaguars are back in the driver’s seat for the number one overall pick with the Kansas City Chiefs getting a win. Bad news for the Jags is that leading receiver Cecil Shorts III and tailback Rashad Jennings left the game with concussions, and are questionable for next week’s showdown with the New York Jets.
In Tampa, the Bucs were up at the half over the Denver Broncos 10-7. Then it turned into the Peyton Manning show. The Broncos put up 21 unanswered points in the third quarter and managed to close out the win 31-23. Manning says that wide receiver Demaryius Thomas has been big for them this year.
Thomas finished with two touchdowns and nearly 100 receiving yards. Manning also passed Dan Marino for second all time on the completions list, and broke a Broncos record for most scoring throws, passing former Broncos QB and now Executive Vice President John Elway. With the win, Broncos clinched the AFC West, and with the Bucs loss the Atlanta Falcons lock up the NFC South.
It was a battle all the way in Miami, as the New England Patriots and the Dolphins went at it. But it was mistakes and penalites that killed the Phins against thier division rival, as a botched punt, a roughing the punter penalty and a fumble by Miami led to 17 New England points, and another penalty took away a Dolphins touchdown. Dolphins head man Joe Philbin says they didn’t put enough points to keep up with Tom Brady and the Pats.
New England is on a six game winning streak, and locked up the AFC East with the win.
Sticking in the East, tonight two NFC East foes go at it as the Washington Redskins welcome in the New York football Giants. The Redskins look to win their third straight, while the G-Men try to stay on top in the NFC East.