I own Tyrod Taylor in one of my fantasy teams. In fact, I have owned him for the past two seasons as I continue to wrap my head around the fantastic world of NFL fantasy football. Laugh if you want, but last year he outscored the likes of Roethlisberger, Mariota and Rivers and helped me win my league. So you can understand my confusion, when he was still putting up solid numbers, behind Sean McDermott’s decision to start rookie Nathan Peterman instead. THAT decision might be the defining moment from McDermott’s first year as a head coach. Yikes.

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The Seeded

AFC
1st: Pittsburgh Steelers (8-2) – vs. Packers, @Bengals, vs. Ravens
2nd: New England Patriots (8-2) – vs. Dolphins, @Bills, @Dolphins
3rd: Jacksonville Jaguars (7-3) – @Cardinals, vs. Colts, vs. Seahawks
4th: Kansas City Chiefs (6-4) – vs. Bills, @Jets, vs. Raiders
5th: Tennessee Titans (6-4) – @Colts, vs. Texans, @Cardinals
6th: Baltimore Ravens (5-5) – vs. Texans, vs. Lions, @Steelers

I still think that the Patriots are the best team in the AFC, but the Steelers smackdown of Tennessee on Thursday night has me thinking. The 7-3 Jaguars with Blake Bortles still their quarterback are in the driver’s seat to win the South after avoiding a Brown’s upset. The fifth-placed Titans own the tiebreaker over Jacksonville which could determine things for in the division title race. For the team sandwiched between them things couldn’t be worse with Kansas’ fourth loss in five tries this week to the miserable Giants. So much for the MVP version of Alex Smith. The shutout Ravens move into the last wildcard spot with the Bills now in danger of extending their 17-year playoff drought.

NFC
1st: Philadelphia Eagles (9-1) – vs. Bears, @Seahawks, @Rams
2nd: Minnesota Vikings (8-2) – @Lions, @Falcons, @Panthers
3rd: New Orleans Saints (8-2) – @Rams, vs. Panthers, @Falcons
4th: Los Angeles Rams (7-3) – vs. Saints, @Cardinals, vs. Eagles
5th: Carolina Panthers (7-3) @Jets, @Saints, vs. Vikings
6th: Atlanta Falcons (6-4) – vs. Bucs, vs. Vikings, vs. Saints

THIS is starting to get fun. Over the next fortnight, we will well and truly know who the contenders and pretenders are in the NFC. The Eagles gave us another reason to believe after drubbing the Cowboys and the battle of Goff vs. Keenum went to the latter with the Vikings shaping up as another legit threat for the crown. New Orleans survived against the Redskins in a close game that I saw coming. The NFC South crown isn’t their’s by any means though with the wildcard spots belonging to two other division rivals as the ‘Hard Knocks’ darlings are the odd ones out. Sorry Bucs fans.

NFL Playoff Picture – Week 11 1Image from bloggingdirty.com

In The Hunt

AFC
Buffalo Bills (5-5) – @Cheifs, vs. Patriots, vs. Colts
Los Angeles Chargers (4-6) – @Cowboys, vs. Browns, vs. Redskins
Oakland Raiders (4-6) – vs. Broncos, vs. Giants, @Chiefs

THIS week the Chargers get promoted after their dismantling of the Bills and the fact that they may still emerge as the best team in the shitty AFC West. Their division pals Oakland could have a new head coach by the time you read this and if they lose to the woeful Broncos, then Jack Del Rio’s blood will be spilt in the streets. Buffalo MUST show something against the sliding Chiefs if they want to stay in the mix given the fact the play New England a week later.

NFC
Seattle Seahawks (6-4) – @49ers, vs. Eagles, @ Jaguars
Detroit Lions (6-4) – vs. Vikings, @Ravens, @Bucs
Green Bay Packers (5-5) – @Steelers, vs. Bucs, @Browns
Dallas Cowboys (5-5) – vs. Chargers, vs. Eagles, @Giants

TIED for sixth at 6-4 the Seahawks and Lions trail Atlanta based head-to-head losses to the Falcons this season. Seattle could leapfrog back into the seeded places if they decide to finally fire Blair Walsh while the Lions need to upset the Vikings to stay in the picture. Green Bay should be put out of their misery this week and Dallas faces a danger game hosting the hyped up Chargers this week. Lose and that could be curtains given their run home without Zeke.

Cowboys Falcons FootballImage from aldipest.com

Miracles Do Happen

Washington Redskins (4-6)
Arizona Cardinals (4-6)
Tampa Bay Buccaneers (4-6)
Miami Dolphins (4-6)
New York Jets (4-6)
Houston Texans (4-6)
Cincinnati Bengals (4-6)
Denver Broncos (3-7)
Indianapolis Colts (3-7)

9-7 in the AFC and 10-6 in the NFC is probably required for a playoff appearance this year. Cincinnati, Houston and Tampa Bay give their fans some small hope with Week 10 wins, but they still face an improbable uphill climb. Washington and Arizona are annoying and pesky, but injury issues mean they won’t see postseason action. The Broncos and Colts are just praying for a miracle and below is a live reaction to a Dolphins worker hearing they have to play the Patriots twice in the next three weeks.

Better Luck Next Year

Chicago Bears (3-7)
New York Giants (2-8)
San Francisco 49ers (1-9)
Cleveland Browns (0-10)

WELCOME to the end of your season Chicago! Beating the Panthers and improving to 3-4 gave them hope as they tried to climb back into the postseason race. Three straight losses, including one to the Aaron Rodgers-less Packers at home, means that their season is broken now. They now hope they can join New York and cause some headaches to other potential playoff teams. Look out Philly.

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