The National Football League concludes their regular season today with 14 games on the schedule. Three of the sites could have weather to contend with when the Baltimore Ravens host the Pittsburgh Steelers, Cleveland Browns entertain the Cincinnati Bengals and Buffalo Bills welcome the New York Jets. Rain is expected in Baltimore and Cleveland while snow is forecasted for Buffalo.
Two regular season ending games involve a pair of teams seeking a Wild Card berth. The first is played early when the Ravens host the Steelers and the nightcap has the Las Vegas Raiders up against the Los Angeles Chargers.
The winner of the Raiders/Chargers game advances to the postseason and both teams gain a playoff date if the two teams tie tonight. In Baltimore, either the Ravens or Steelers could advance with a win, but neither is assured of a postseason berth. They would also need the Indianapolis Colts to lose to the Jacksonville Jaguars and not have the Raiders/Chargers game end in a tie.
The Ravens once appeared to have a lock not only on a playoff berth but the AFC North Division title. But their lead has melted away during a five game losing streak that twice saw them come up short on failed game ending two point conversion attempts. Their losses have allowed the Cincinnati Bengals to capture the division title and kept the struggling Steelers in the playoff hunt.
During their five game losing streak, three Baltimore defeats were one-point losses and another was a two-point setback. They also lost a lopsided decision to the division winning Bengals, 41-21, in a game key to Cincinnati winning their first AFC North Division title since 2015. The Bengals winning campaign also ends a streak of three straight last place finishes.
As for the Ravens, despite their problems and the fact that they still would need help while eliminating the Pittsburgh Steelers today, my forecast for Baltimore is a win by the Ravens and a loss that would cap Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger’s career.
A final week of the regular season always produces some interesting results when some teams have already packed and are ready to start their off-season while other squads out of the playoff picture are looking for some late redemption for their disappointing campaigns.
The unique situations offer some excellent wagering propositions.
As for the public, they have checked in with their three favorite plays of the week and they are the Tampa Bay Buccaneers (-9½) over the Carolina Panthers; Green Bay Packers (-3) over the Detroit Lions; and New England Patriots (-6) over the Miami Dolphins.
As for the Qoxhi Week 18 selections, those games are now posted on this site and if a Bullet Play develops in the final hour leading up to the day’s first kickoff, that contest will be added to the play list by 9:45 a.m. Pacific Time.