NFL Week 17 Predictions: New England Patriots Close 2014 Out With A Win

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Sep 21, 2014; Detroit, MI, USA; Green Bay Packers free safety Micah Hyde (33) is unable to catch Detroit Lions running back Reggie Bush (21) as he runs for a touchdown during the fourth quarter at Ford Field. Mandatory Credit: Tim Fuller-USA TODAY Sports

Falcons 31 Panthers 27

You might not like it, but someone is going to win the NFC South. It has been an awful year for this division, and they probably don’t deserve to have a team in this year’s tournament. Fortunately for us, we get a good old-fashioned play-in game in week 17, which provides us with some much needed excitement from this division. Matt Ryan and Julio Jones will feast on Carolina’s secondary, and a late touchdown puts them into the playoffs.

Packers 24 Lions 20

Detroit hasn’t won in Green Bay since 1991. That is just unbelievable, and as awesome as it would be to see them break the streak to clinch the division, I just don’t see it happening. Detroit’s front four will get their fair share of hits on Aaron Rodgers, but the difference this time will be the Packers’ ground game, which gets going early to keep the Lions at least somewhat at bay.

Broncos 34 Raiders 17

If Denver plays like they did on Monday night, they might just lose this game, and not get a bye-week in the opening round of the playoffs. But I doubt Peyton Manning will let this opportunity slip through his grasp, even though his arm is completely shot. Look for the Broncos to lean on C.J. Anderson and that running game to get by, as they prepare to try and somehow get back to Foxboro for a rematch.

49ers 27 Cardinals 20

Arizona doesn’t have much to play for, and the Niners just choked hardcore on national television last Saturday. I think San Francisco will come out angry, and the Cards will come out with a bit of a lazy approach to this one, as they look ahead to the playoffs.

Seahawks 28 Rams 10

Seattle beats up on another anemic offense; everybody crowns them as the best team ever. Rinse, repeat.

Steelers 31 Bengals 20

This one is simple: I’m taking Ben Roethlisberger in a meaningful primetime December matchup over Andy Dalton every single time. In fact, to win one game, if I can’t have Tom Brady, I’m probably taking Big Ben right now. That is how much I love the big man in the playoffs.