The Vikings locked up the NFC North beating the Packers 20-13 at Lambeau Field on “Sunday Night Football.” Minnesota is the third-seed and hosts the Seahawks Wild Card Weekend, while the Packers hit the road to face NFC East champion Redskins. Both the Panthers and Cardinals have a bye. Carolina earned the number-one seed finishing 15-and-1. Arizona is the second-seed at 13-and-3.
The Broncos and Patriots each earned a bye on the AFC side of the NFL Playoffs. Denver is the number-one seed and New England holds the number-two slot. During Wild Card Weekend, the Texans host the Chiefs and the Steelers are at the Bengals. Pittsburgh snuck in by beating the Browns and with the Jets loss to the Bills.
Phil Dawson kicked four field goals, including a 23-yarder in overtime, to give the 49ers a 19-16 win over the Rams at Levi’s Stadium. Greg Zuerlein had a 48-yarder blocked that would have won the game in OT. The Rams finish the season 7-and-9.
Newly signed Josh Freeman and Ryan Lindley each tossed a touchdown pass to help the Colts take down the Titans 30-24 at Lucas Oil Stadium. Frank Gore had 76 yards rushing on 19 carries for Indianapolis, which was eliminated from playoff contention with a Texans victory. Jerrell Freeman returned an interception 23 yards to the house early in the third quarter for the Colts. The team got back to .500 with the win and ended the season with an 8-and-8 record.
Matthew Stafford threw three touchdown passes to lead the Lions to a 24-20 win over the Bears in the season finale at Soldier Field. Jay Cutler was 17-of-23 for 245 yards, two TD’s and three interceptions for the 6-and-10 Bears, who are last in the division for the second straight year. Matt Forte ran for 74 yards on 17 carries while adding a 23-yard TD catch in the setback.
Another two NFL head coaches are looking for work. The 49ers fired Jim Tomsula after only one year on the job. San Francisco went 5-and-11. The Browns canned head coach Mike Pettine, along with general manager Ray Farmer. The duo led Cleveland to a 10-and-22 record the past two seasons.
Broncos head coach Gary Kubiak isn’t sure who will be starting for the team during the playoffs. Peyton Manning replaced Brock Osweiler during the third quarter in Denver’s 27-20 comeback win over the Chargers on Sunday. The Broncos finished the season 12-and-4.
The first 20 picks of the 2016 NFL Draft order are set. The Titans have the first-overall pick after going 3-and-13. Tennessee picked second last year, coming away with quarterback Marcus Mariota. The Browns are selecting second, followed by the Chargers, Cowboys and Jaguars to wrap up the top five.
The Johnny Manziel saga with the Browns is taking another turn. Peter King reported on “Sunday Night Football’s” pregame show, Manziel did not show up for a scheduled meeting Sunday morning involved with their concussion protocol. The organization couldn’t get in touch with Manziel. King tweeted, “Browns are so done with the guy. I will be stunned if he ever plays another snap for Cleveland. He wants to go to Dallas.”
Coming up Wednesday Night on Talk 101FM, it’s Millikin University Women’s Basketball as the Big Blue play host to North Central. The Big Blue Pregame Show presented by Pepsi gets underway at 6:30p.m., and the tipoff follows at 7:00p.m. Join Scott Busboom and Kevin Hale with all the action Wednesday on Talk 101FM, online listening available at decatur radio dot com.