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NFL Game Capsules - Week 17

Arlington, TX ( - Brandon Boykin intercepted Kyle Orton with 1:43 left and the Philadelphia Eagles ran out the remaining time to seal a 24-22 victory over the Dallas Cowboys on Sunday, winning the NFC East in a thrilling do-or-die regular season finale. Filling in for the injured Tony Romo, who had surgery Friday to repair a herniated disk in his back, Orton threw a 32-yard touchdown pass to Dez Bryant on 4th-and-9 to bring the Cowboys within 24-22 with 3:50 on the clock. Eagles cornerback Cary Williams, though, broke up the two-point try on a pass intended for Bryant in the front left corner of the end zone. Dallas got the ball back with 1:49 left, but Orton threw behind Miles Austin on the first play and Boykin stepped in front to pick off the pass. The Cowboys called their final timeout with 1:36 left after LeSeaon McCoy dashed up the middle for six yards. McCoy, who won the rushing crown, then darted through the right side of the line for the game-clinching first-down run. Nicks Foles threw touchdown passes to McCoy and Brent Celek and Bryce Brown scored on a 6-yard run in the fourth quarter to give the Eagles (10-6) a 24-16 lead. Gavin Escobar had a 17-yard touchdown catch for the Cowboys (8-8), who lost a primetime game in Week 17 with the division title on the line for the third season in a row. The Eagles will host New Orleans next Saturday night in the first round of the playoffs.

Final Score: Green Bay 33, Chicago 28

Chicago, IL ( - Aaron Rodgers and Randall Cobb both returned from injuries Sunday with Green Bay's division hopes on the line and both came through. Rodgers found a wide open Cobb on 4th-and-8 for a 48-yard score with just 38 seconds left to help the Packers with the NFC North with a 33-28 victory over the Chicago Bears. Green Bay has the fourth seed in the upcoming NFC playoffs and will host the San Francisco 49ers in the wild card round of the playoffs next week. Rodgers had been out since a Nov. 4 game against these Bears due to a fractured left collarbone. He returned to practice this week and finished the game 25-for-39 for 318 yards, two touchdowns and two interceptions for the Packers (8-7-1). Chicago (8-8), meanwhile, dropped its final two games of the year with its playoff hopes in its own hands. The team has now missed the playoffs three straight seasons.

Final Score: Denver 34, Oakland 14

Oakland, CA ( - Despite sitting out the second half, Peyton Manning set the single-season passing yards record and the Denver Broncos became the first NFL team ever to score 600 points in a 34-14 win Sunday over the Oakland Raiders that gave them the No. 1 seed in the AFC playoffs. Both records were broken in a lopsided first half that had the Broncos ahead 31-0 going into the locker room. Manning threw for 266 yards, exactly the number he needed to break Drew Brees' record of 5,476 yards for New Orleans in 2011. His 5-yard touchdown pass to Demaryius Thomas with 13 seconds left in the half gave him 5,477 yards. Manning had four touchdown passes, extending his own record to 55 for the season against just 10 interceptions. The AFC West- champion Broncos raced past those same 2007 Patriots to break the NFL record for most points scored in a season, doing it on Manning's 63-yard touchdown pass to Thomas earlier in the second quarter. The Broncos needed 18 points to break the record of 589 and got 31 in the first half. They finished the regular season with 606 points. Denver (13-3) earned home-field advantage throughout the AFC playoffs and posted back-to- back 13-win seasons for the first time in franchise history. The Broncos played just one game as the No. 1 seed last season, falling to eventual Super Bowl champion Baltimore in double- overtime after their first- round bye. The Raiders (4-12) ended the season on a six-game losing streak. They haven't finished better than .500 in the last 11 seasons since going 11-5 in 2002 on the way to a Super Bowl appearance.

Final Score: Seattle 27, St. Louis 9

Seattle, WA ( - Golden Tate caught eight passes for 129 yards and a touchdown and Marshawn Lynch rushed for 97 yards and a TD as the Seattle Seahawks locked up the NFC's No. 1 seed with a 27-9 win over the St. Louis Rams on Sunday. Russell Wilson was 15-for-23 passing for 172 yards and a score and Malcolm Smith returned an interception for a touchdown for the Seahawks (13-3), who won the NFC West and secured home-field advantage throughout the conference playoffs. Kellen Clemens completed 21-of-30 passes for 157 yards, one touchdown and two interceptions for the Rams (7-9), who were held to just 13 rushing yards. St. Louis will have the No. 2 overall pick in the 2014 NFL Draft after Washington's loss earlier on Sunday. The Rams will receive the Redskins' pick to complete the Robert Griffin III trade.

Final Score: Carolina 21, Atlanta 20

Atlanta, GA ( - Cam Newton tossed two touchdown passes and the Panthers' potent defense made life miserable for Atlanta's Matt Ryan, as Carolina claimed the NFC South crown with a 21-20 win over the Falcons on Sunday. Newton completed 15-of-27 passes for 149 yards with an interception and added 72 rushing yards on 12 carries for Carolina (12-4), which secured a first- round bye in the playoffs with its 11th win in the last 12 games. The defense, meanwhile, sacked Ryan nine times, including a Carolina single-game record four from end Greg Hardy, while also receiving an 8-yard interception return TD from rookie cornerback Melvin White en route to the team's first division title since 2008. Carolina occupies the second seed in the NFC behind Seattle. With their postseason hopes long gone, the Falcons (4-12) were looking to play spoiler while also trying to send Tony Gonzalez out on a high note, with the legendary tight end expected to retire at season's end. Gonzalez finished with four catches for 56 yards and, if it truly is over, the 13-time Pro Bowler will finish his career with a number of NFL records at the tight end position, including most career receiving yards (15,127), most career receptions (1,325) and most touchdown catches (111).

Final Score: San Diego 27, Kansas City 24 (OT)

San Diego, CA ( - The San Diego Chargers got everything they wished for this holiday season. Kept alive by a pair of losses earlier in the day, the Chargers rallied from a 10-point fourth-quarter deficit to post a 27-24 overtime win over Kansas City and nail down the AFC's final wild card spot. Nick Novak kicked a pair of clutch field goals, the first coming with 3:21 remaining in regulation and the other giving San Diego a 27-24 edge in the extra session, while Philip Rivers threw three touchdown passes to help the Chargers outlast a surprisingly competitive Kansas City squad fielding predominantly backups. San Diego (9-7) remained in contention when both Miami and Baltimore lost prior to kickoff, then got another gift when the Chiefs' Ryan Succop pulled a would-be game-winning 41-yard field goal try wide right with four seconds left in the fourth quarter. The win propels the Chargers into a matchup with AFC North-champion Cincinnati in next weekend's Wild Card Round. Already locked into the conference's No. 5 seed, Kansas City (11-5) rested the majority of its regulars in preparation for next week's playoff clash at Indianapolis.

Final Score: New England 34, Buffalo 20

Foxboro, MA ( - It appears LeGarrette Blount enjoys playing in the rain. Blount rushed 24 times for a career-high 189 yards with two touchdowns and set up a pair of second-half scores with lengthy kickoff returns, leading the New England Patriots to a 34-20 win over the Buffalo Bills in the regular-season finale at a drenched Gillette Stadium. Tom Brady had 122 yards and a touchdown on 14-of-24 passing in the steady rain and recorded his third career punt for New England (12-4). The AFC East champs secured the No. 2 seed and a first-round bye. Julian Edelman had 65 yards on nine receptions and joined Wes Welker and Troy Brown as the only Patriots to have 100 catches in a season. Thad Lewis, starting for injured Buffalo rookie EJ Manuel (knee), was 16-of-29 for 247 yards and one touchdown. C.J. Spiller amassed 105 yards on 19 carries for the Bills (6-10).

Final Score: New Orleans 42, Tampa Bay 17

New Orleans, LA ( - Drew Brees fired four touchdown passes in the first half and added a rushing score in the second to help the New Orleans Saints secure a playoff berth with a 42-17 thumping of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on Sunday at Mercedes-Benz Superdome. Brees completed 24-of-31 passes for 381 yards and hooked up with 11 different targets, with Lance Moore, Jimmy Graham, Kenny Stills and Robert Meachem each hauling in a score for the Saints (11-5), who bounced back from consecutive setbacks to claim the sixth seed in the NFC playoff picture. New Orleans will pay a visit to Philadelphia on Saturday, Jan. 4, at 8:10 p.m. ET. The Eagles won the NFC East title Sunday night by edging Dallas 24-22. Mike Glennon capped his rookie campaign by throwing for 219 yards and two touchdowns with an interception on 22-of-41 throws for the disappointing Buccaneers (4-12), who closed the season on a three-game slide.

Final Score: NY Jets 20, Miami 7

Miami, FL ( - Three weeks ago the Miami Dolphins beat the New England Patriots for control of their own postseason destiny with games against lesser division rivals Buffalo and the New York Jets remaining. The Dolphins, however, lost both and will be watching the playoffs for a fifth consecutive season. After a shutout loss at Buffalo last week, the Jets put the nail in Miami's coffin on Sunday with a 20-7 victory at Sun Life Stadium. Geno Smith engineered a pair of second-quarter touchdown drives, scoring on a 7-yard run to put the Jets ahead for good. Smith completed 17-of-27 passes for 190 yards and ran for 44 yards on 10 carries. Bilal Powell finished with 76 yards on the ground and threw a pass out of the wildcat to set up a Nick Folk field goal that helped seal it for the Jets (8-8), who won consecutive games for the first time this season to finish at .500 for coach Rex Ryan, whose job security has been a topic of conversation all season. After the game, Jets owner Woody Johnson said Ryan will return for the 2014 season. Ryan Tannehill threw for 204 yards with a touchdown on 20-of-40 efficiency, but was picked off three times for Miami (8-8), which has not had a winning season since beating the Jets on the final day of the 2008 campaign for a surprising AFC East title.

Final Score: Cincinnati 34, Baltimore 17

Cincinnati, OH ( - A new Super Bowl champion will be crowned this season. Andy Dalton ran for the go-ahead touchdown early in the fourth quarter, and the Cincinnati Bengals closed out the regular season by defeating the Baltimore Ravens 34-17. The loss, coupled with Pittsburgh's win over Cleveland, eliminated the defending champion Ravens from playoff contention. Dalton had an uneven performance with two touchdown passes and four interceptions that Baltimore could only turn into a trio of Justin Tucker field goals. Dalton was 21-of-36 for 281 yards as the Bengals (11-5) posted an unblemished 8-0 record at home for the second time in franchise history. The AFC North champs are the No. 3 seed and will host San Diego in the Wild-Card round. Baltimore's Joe Flacco threw three interceptions, the last of which Dre Kirkpatrick returned 21 yards for the game-sealing touchdown with 4:07 remaining. Flacco was 30-of-50 for 192 yards and one touchdown for Baltimore (8-8), which missed the playoffs for the first time in six years under head coach John Harbaugh.

Final Score: Indianapolis 30, Jacksonville 10

Indianapolis, IN ( - Andrew Luck threw for 282 yards and a touchdown as the Indianapolis Colts cruised to a 30-10 win over the Jacksonville Jaguars in the final week of the NFL season. Luck completed 26- of-37 passes, 11 of which went to T.Y. Hilton, who finished with 155 yards receiving. Donald Brown and Trent Richardson added one rushing touchdown apiece and Griff Whalen caught one TD pass for the Colts (11-5), who had already wrapped up the AFC South and will be the fourth seed in the upcoming AFC Playoffs. Indianapolis will face the Kansas City Chiefs in the AFC Wild Card game next week. Chad Henne was 30-for-51 passing for 331 yards, one touchdown and an interception and Kerry Taylor caught eight passes for 75 yards and a score for the Jaguars (4-12), who secured the third overall pick in the 2014 NFL Draft.

Final Score: Minnesota 14, Detroit 13

Minneapolis, MN ( - Cordarrelle Patterson scored both of Minnesota's touchdowns, as the Vikings took a 14-13 win over the Detroit Lions in their final game ever in the Metrodome. It was a disappointing season for Minnesota (5-10-1) as the team followed a surprising playoff appearance in 2012 by missing the playoffs for a third time in the past four seasons. The poor season has put Minnesota head coach Leslie Frazier on the hot seat, as his team is 21-32-1 during his three-plus seasons with the team. Minnesota will be moving to the University of Minnesota's TCF Bank Stadium for the next two seasons as its new home is being built. Detroit head coach Jim Schwartz has also been the subject of job security rumors, as the Lions (7-9) have had consecutive poor seasons after making the playoffs in 2011 for the first time since 1999.

Final Score: NY Giants 20, Washington 6

East Rutherford, NJ ( - Jerrel Jernigan scored both a rushing and receiving touchdown to help offset an injury to Eli Manning and lift the New York Giants to a 20-6 victory over the Washington Redskins as the NFC East rivals wrapped up disappointing seasons. Jernigan hauled in a 24-yard touchdown pass from Manning in the second quarter and came through with a 49- yard scoring run in the third. Manning completed 10-of-24 throws for 152 yards with an interception before exiting with a sprained left ankle near the end of the first half. Curtis Painter managed a mere 11 yards passing after that and was intercepted once on 2-of-8 passing, but got a boost from a New York defense that limited the dysfunctional Redskins to 251 total yards and forced four turnovers. The win was the seventh in 10 games for the Giants (7-9) following an 0-6 start and sent Washington (3-13) to an eighth consecutive loss in what is widely speculated to be Mike Shanahan's last game as head coach of the Redskins.

Final Score: Pittsburgh 20, Cleveland 7

Pittsburgh, PA ( - Everything went the Steelers' way early, but a late Chargers win sealed Pittsburgh's fate as an outsider looking in on the postseason. Pittsburgh had slim playoff hopes coming in but did its part by cruising past the Cleveland Browns, 20-7, and was on the brink of sneaking in after the Dolphins and Ravens were eliminated from contention with losses on Sunday. San Diego, though, stole the AFC's final wild card spot with a 27-24 overtime victory over the Chiefs, keeping the Steelers (8-8) as spectators for the playoffs for a second straight year. Ben Roethlisberger threw for 179 yards with a touchdown and two interceptions for the Steelers, who have won 10 consecutive home games against the Browns. Cleveland (4-12) finished another forgettable campaign with seven straight losses. Jason Campbell completed just 23-of-41 passes for 240 yards with a touchdown and an interception, while Josh Gordon ended his huge campaign with a relatively quiet seven catches for 82 yards. Browns head coach Rob Chudzinski is rumored to be on the hot seat after just one year at the helm.

Final Score: Tennessee 16, Houston 10

Nashville, TN ( - Neither team had a chance to make the playoffs, so they played for pride and possibly their jobs. The contest was highlighted with records and milestones but one record stood out the most, it was for the Houston Texans. They fell to 2-14, to match the franchise worst record, and secured the No.1 spot in the upcoming draft. Chris Johnson ran for 127 yards and a touchdown on 27 carries to lead the Tennessee Titans (7-9) to a 16-10 win over the Texans. Ryan Fitzpatrick completed 15-of-24 passes for 166 yards and an interception. Johnson became the sixth player in NFL history to record 1,000 rushing yards in each of his first six seasons with his effort. In his first career start Jonathan Grimes carried the ball 16 times for 50 yards and a touchdown for Houston, which moved the franchise worst losing streak to 14 games. Matt Schaub was 22-for-34 with 229 yards and two interceptions.

Final Score: San Francisco 23, Arizona 20

Glendale, AZ ( - Phil Dawson more than made up for missing his first field goal in 27 tries. Dawson nailed a game-winning 40-yard field goal as time expired and the San Francisco 49ers edged the Arizona Cardinals, 23-20, in the regular-season finale. Dawson split the uprights from 56 yards out to give San Francisco a 20-17 lead with 1:45 remaining. The Cardinals, though, answered with a Jay Feely 43-yard field goal to knot the tilt with 29 ticks on the clock. Although San Francisco headed to the desert with its playoff fate already secured following Monday's 34-24 triumph over the Atlanta Falcons, a win coupled with a Seattle Seahawks loss would've allowed the 49ers to win their third straight NFC West title. Seattle, though, beat the St. Louis Rams Sunday to clinch the division. The 49ers (12-4) will settle with the fifth seed and will visit the NFC North-champion Green Bay Packers in the Wild Card Round. The 49ers (12-4) closed the year with six straight wins.