Some teams (such as Saints, Eagles, Steelers and Patriots) are looking forward to the playoffs while others dream of the playoffs will be made or broken in Week 17. And then there are the teams who will not make the playoffs at all. Those organizations will likely start more rookies in Week 17. It’s time to see what they have for next season.
Rams likely resting starters
Los Angeles Rams coach Sean McVay told the media that he would probably rest his starters for the season finale against the 49ers and added that getting guys healthy is more important than a 3 or 4 seed. If this is true, it’s a good strategy leading up to the playoffs plus the Niners have been red hot. I’m not sure I’d want my team busting their butts and risk losing morale if they lost. Assuming McVay is telling the truth, Niners should take home the win this week.
NOTE: If the Niners beat the Rams, a Falcons win, or Seahawks loss would mean that Atlanta Falcons would travel to the Superdome to face the Saints for the third time this season.
Jets should have done better
The overall talent and grit among the Jets starters have been present on the field almost all season (example: the emergence of stud WR Robby Anderson). If there’s one thing they failed at doing most this year, it’s closing the game the strong. The Jets have been outscored in the 4th quarter by a 2-to-1 margin, 137 to 64. That is unacceptable for an NFL-caliber team. They play the Patriots in Week 17 meaning likely more of the same from Gang Green…they will lose – with illusions of a close game littered throughout three quarters as it has been too many times this season – and be outscored in the 4th quarter.
NOTE: The Steelers can get the #1 seed in the AFC playoffs if the Jets steal a win from the Patriots.
Minnesota still eying the #2 seed
Though the Rams might sit starters, expect Minnesota Vikings to fight for their playoff position
Although the Philadelphia Eagles secured the top seed in week 16, Mike Zimmer’s Vikings won’t stop until the #2 seed is clinched. With too much on the line, expect the Vikings to be at their best on the road to becoming the first team to play a Super Bowl in their home stadium.