You choose, we deliver
If you are interested in this story, you might be interested in others from The Journal Gazette. Go to and pick the subjects you care most about. We'll deliver your customized daily news report at 3 a.m. Fort Wayne time, right to your email.


  • Cuban baseball opening runs into trouble
      HAVANA – Cuba’s unprecedented effort to stop a devastating baseball talent drain doesn’t seem to be working, with a string of stars leaving for the major leagues in the year since the government allowed a small
  • Brewers win to draw closer to Pirates
    Elian Herrera sprinted home on Logan Schafer’s sacrifice fly in the ninth inning and the Milwaukee Brewers edged the Pittsburgh Pirates 1-0 on Saturday night to tighten the race for the second National League wild-card spot.
  • Another injury for Yankees
    Jacoby Ellsbury was out of the New York Yankees lineup a day after straining his right hamstring, and the team’s most consistent player may be done.

Week 17

Houston at Indianapolis

Time: 1 p.m. (CBS)

Records: Texans (12-3), Colts (10-5)

The skinny: What could have been a good final-day division matchup now means little because the Texans have clinched the division and the Colts have secured a wild-card spot. Still, the Texans need a win to secure a first-round bye. But the Colts are storming.

Prediction: Colts, 24-23

Chicago at Detroit

Time: 1 p.m. (Fox)

Records: Bears (9-6), Lions (4-11)

The skinny: Once looking like a division winner, the Bears find themselves needing a victory against the Lions and a loss by the Vikings to get a wild-card spot. They should uphold their end of the parlay.

Prediction: Bears, 30-23

Cleveland at Pittsburgh

Time: 1 p.m.

Records: Browns (5-10), Steelers (7-8)

The skinny: Let’s not discount the impact of all the key injuries to the Steelers this season that has resulted in a season to which the Steelers are not accustomed. They are also not accustomed to this – a Browns sweep.

Prediction: Browns, 17-16

Baltimore at Cincinnati

Time: 1 p.m.

Records: Ravens (10-5), Bengals (9-6)

The skinny: The Ravens found their step and righted their ship with a convincing victory against the Giants. And just in time, too: The Bengals have won six of their past seven.

Prediction: Ravens, 16-14

Tampa Bay at Atlanta

Time: 1 p.m.

Records: Buccaneers (6-9), Falcons (13-2)

The skinny: The Falcons have clinched the No. 1 seed in the NFC and appear to have a nice path to the Super Bowl. They are one of two teams who have not lost at home (7-0).

Prediction: Falcons, 24-17

New York at Buffalo

Time: 1 p.m.

Records: Jets (6-9), Bills (5-10)

The skinny: Only Times Square after New Year’s Eve is in more disarray than the Jets. What happened? Go back to who made the decision to bring in Tim Tebow. It messed up Mark Sanchez and created a circus with the team.

Prediction: Bills, 24-16

Philadelphia at New York

Time: 1 p.m.

Records: Eagles (4-11), Giants (8-7)

The skinny: The Giants need a win and some outside help to defend their Super Bowl title.

Prediction: Giants, 27-16

Carolina at New Orleans

Time: 1 p.m.

Records: Panthers (6-9), Saints (7-8)

The skinny: The Saints have bounced back from a three-game losing streak to win two in a row.

Prediction: Saints, 40-28

Jacksonville at Tennessee

Time: 1 p.m.

Records: Jaguars (2-13), Titans (5-10)

The skinny: The Jaguars are still involved in a race, but it is with Kansas City for the No. 1 draft choice. Like the Jaguars, the Titans are 1-4 in their past five games.

Prediction: Titans, 15-12

Kansas City at Denver

Time: 4:25 p.m. (CBS)

Records: Chiefs (2-13), Broncos (12-3)

The skinny: The Broncos have won a league-best 10 in a row and can at least secure a first-round bye with a victory.

Prediction: Broncos, 30-3

Oakland at San Diego

Time: 4:25 p.m.

Records: Raiders (4-11), Chargers (5-10)

The skinny: True to form, the Chargers follow a bad home loss to the Panthers with a road victory against the Jets.

Prediction: Chargers, 27-13

Arizona at San Francisco

Time: 4:25 p.m.

Records: Cardinals (5-10), 49ers (10-4-1)

The skinny: The 49ers need a victory to hold off the surging Seahawks and win the division title. There’s probably a good chance that will happen against the Cardinals.

Prediction: 49ers, 27-3

St. Louis at Seattle

Time: 4:25 p.m.

Records: Rams (7-7-1), Seahawks (10-5)

The skinny: The Seahawks are one of two teams who have not lost a home game (7-0) in 2012. And, in their past three games, they’ve outscored their opponent 150-30.

Prediction: Seahawks, 38-13

Green Bay at Minnesota

Time: 4:25 p.m. (Fox)

Records: Packers (11-4), Vikings (9-6)

The skinny: The Packers need a win to secure a first-round bye. But the Vikings have won three in a row and can secure a wild-card spot with a victory.

Prediction: Packers, 30-24

Miami at New England

Time: 4:25 p.m.

Records: Dolphins (7-8), Patriots (11-4)

The skinny: The Patriots need some outside help to determine if they will play next week or have a bye. But they won’t need any help beating the Dolphins at home.

Prediction: Patriots, 34-20

Dallas at Washington

Time: 8:20 p.m. (NBC)

Records: Cowboys (8-7), Redskins (9-6)

The skinny: The Redskins were once 3-6, but, after six wins in a row, can win the division with a victory against the Cowboys. But, despite their loss to the Saints, the Cowboys are in another winner-take-all battle in the season finale.

Prediction: Redskins, 27-20

– Gerry DuLac, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette Record: 12-4 last week; 149-91 season (Does not include Thursday games)