NFL: Panthers knock Redskins out of wild-card position
Cam Newton and the Panthers stuck it to Josh Norman and the Redskins, helping the Buccaneers and Packers improve their playoff chances.
Carolina’s 26-15 victory at Washington on Monday night knocked the Redskins out of the NFC’s second wild-card position and kept the Panthers in the race mathematically. Carolina needs to win and have 10 games go their way, including another tie for Washington.
The Redskins gained control of their playoff hopes when rival Dallas beat Tampa Bay on Sunday night, but they gave it right back. The loss dropped Washington into eighth place in the conference behind the Bucs and Green Bay.
On Sunday, Tom Brady and the Patriots clinched another division title and helped the Dolphins jump into a postseason position while Oakland snapped a 13-year playoff drought.
New England secured its eighth straight AFC East title and earned a first-round bye with a dominant defensive performance in a 16-3 win at Denver.
The Patriots’ victory allowed Miami to leapfrog the Broncos for the second wild-card position in the AFC.
The Raiders beat the Chargers to earn their first trip to the playoffs since losing the 2003 Super Bowl.
In the early games Sunday, the NFC’s playoff picture got more jumbled and the Chiefs lost control of their division championship hopes.
The Packers got right back in the mix for an NFC North title thanks to a last-second win over the Bears and help from the Giants, who beat the Lions and put pressure on the Cowboys in the NFC East.
Kansas City lost to Tennessee and then fell out of first place in the AFC West following Oakland’s victory. In the AFC South, all three teams vying for first place got big wins.
The Seattle Seahawks kicked off Week 15 by securing another NFC West title on Thursday night.
Dallas, which already got in, maintained a two-game edge over the Giants with a 26-20 win over the Buccaneers.