With five weeks of games remaining, the
Teams all over the league are fighting to stay in the playoff race, among them surging clubs such as Kansas City, Houston, Seattle, Chicago and Tampa Bay.
Then there are the teams that started fast but now are taking on water. Atlanta, for instance, won its first five games but since has lost five of six. The
"I believe in what we got," said Falcons running back Devonta Freeman, who returned to practice this week after missing nearly two full games because of a concussion. "I believe in the game plan. I believe in every man on this team. We all understand what we're facing. We just got to be all in on each other."
It would take a bizarre string of events for anyone in the
Just as the Seahawks were gaining some offensive momentum, with running back Thomas Rawls and receiver
The theme in Minnesota this week has been these 6-5 Seahawks could easily be 8-3, seeing as they have lost four close games — two in overtime, one by four points and another by seven.
"I don't know how you can ever say that," Carroll said. "You are what you are."
Kansas City and Houston are definitely better than they were earlier this season. The
Then again, there are five games to go, and if they are as unpredictable as the past five weeks, then most everything remains up in the air.
Three's a charm
The last three prime-time games have all been decided with a huge final play.
Last Sunday, Denver handed New England its first loss of the season, when C.J. Anderson broke loose on a 48-yard touchdown run in overtime, clinching a 30-24 victory.
On Monday night, Baltimore beat Cleveland, 33-27, on a wild play. The Ravens' Will Hill returned a blocked field goal 64 yards for a touchdown as time expired.
And Green Bay kicked off Week 13 on Thursday with a finish for the ages.
Even though he's the NFL's oldest active non-kicker, Indianapolis quarterback
Hasselbeck used to get grief about that from his coach, Mike Holmgren, when they both were with the Seahawks. Holmgren wanted him to dial down his excitement for games, or maybe just act more like a cool, collected quarterback than a hyped-up linebacker.
Former Seahawks center Robbie Tobek remembers playfully teasing Hasselbeck about that in the huddle.
"I remember when we finally got over the hump and beat the
In other words, Hasselbeck had to go deep.