NFL 2014: What To Look For Week 17
NFL 2014: What To Look For Week 17


Here's what to look for during the last week of the NFL regular season

Unpredictable NFL

With one week remaining in the 2014 regular season, at least four teams will advance to the playoffs after missing the postseason in 2013 -- ARIZONA (11-4), DALLAS (11-4), DETROIT (11-4) and PITTSBURGH (10-5). Since the 12-team playoff format was adopted in 1990, at least four teams have qualified for the playoffs in every season that were not in the postseason the year before.

Three additional teams that missed the playoffs last season are still in contention for a trip to Super Bowl XLIX -- ATLANTA (6-9), BALTIMORE (9-6) and HOUSTON (8-7).

The NFL teams since 1990 to make the playoffs a season after failing to qualify:

Season Playoff Teams Not In Previous Season's Playoffs
Source: NFL *Through Week 16
19907 (Cincinnati, Chicago, Kansas City, Los Angeles Raiders, Miami, New Orleans, Washington)
19915 (Atlanta, Dallas, Denver, Detroit, New York Jets)
19926 (Miami, Minnesota, Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, San Diego, San Francisco)
19935 (Denver, Detroit, Green Bay, Los Angeles Raiders, New York Giants)
19945 (Chicago, Cleveland, Miami, New England, San Diego)
19954 (Atlanta, Buffalo, Indianapolis, Philadelphia)
19965 (Carolina, Denver, Jacksonville, Minnesota, New England)
19975 (Detroit, Kansas City, Miami, New York Giants, Tampa Bay)
19985 (Arizona, Atlanta, Buffalo, Dallas, New York Jets)
19997 (Detroit, Indianapolis, St. Louis, Seattle, Tampa Bay, Tennessee, Washington)
20006 (Baltimore, Denver, New Orleans, New York Giants, Oakland, Philadelphia)
20016 (Chicago, Green Bay, New England, New York Jets, Pittsburgh, San Francisco)
20025 (Atlanta, Cleveland, Indianapolis, New York Giants, Tennessee)
20038 (Baltimore, Carolina, Dallas, Denver, Kansas City, New England, St. Louis, Seattle)
20045 (Atlanta, Minnesota, New York Jets, Pittsburgh, San Diego)
20057 (Carolina, Chicago, Cincinnati, Jacksonville, New York Giants, Tampa Bay, Washington)
20067 (Baltimore, Dallas, Kansas City, New Orleans, New York Jets, Philadelphia, San Diego)
20076 (Green Bay, Jacksonville, Pittsburgh, Tampa Bay, Tennessee, Washington)
20087 (Arizona, Atlanta, Baltimore, Carolina, Miami, Minnesota, Philadelphia)
20096 (Cincinnati, Dallas, Green Bay, New England, New Orleans, New York Jets)
20105 (Atlanta, Chicago, Kansas City, Pittsburgh, Seattle)
20116 (Cincinnati, Denver, Detroit, Houston, New York Giants, San Francisco)
20124 (Indianapolis, Minnesota, Seattle, Washington)
20135 (Carolina, Kansas City, New Orleans, Philadelphia, San Diego)
20144* (Arizona, Dallas, Detroit, Pittsburgh)


Marvelous Peyton Manning

Denver quarterback PEYTON MANNING leads the NFL with 39 touchdown passes this season.

With one touchdown pass against Oakland on Sunday, Manning will reach the 40-touchdown mark for the third time in his career (2004, 2013) and become the only player in NFL history to pass for at least 40 touchdowns in three separate seasons.

The quarterbacks with at least 40 touchdown passes in a single season:

Quarterback Team(s) Season(s) 40+ TD Seasons
Source: NFL *39 TD passes through Week 16
Peyton Manning*Indianapolis, Denver2004, 20132
Drew BreesNew Orleans2011, 20122
Dan MarinoMiami1984, 19862
Tom BradyNew England20071
Aaron RodgersGreen Bay20111
Matthew StaffordDetroit20111
Kurt WarnerSt. Louis19991


Historic Antonio Gates

San Diego tight end ANTONIO GATES has 9,947 receiving yards and 99 touchdowns in his 12-year career.

Gates' 99 career touchdown catches are tied for ninth in NFL history and with one on Sunday at Kansas City, he would tie Pro Football Hall of Famer STEVE LARGENT and TIM BROWN for seventh all-time. Gates can also join TONY GONZALEZ as the only tight ends in NFL history with 100 touchdown receptions.

The NFL tight ends with the most touchdown receptions in NFL history:

Player Team(s) Seasons TD Receptions
Source: NFL *Active
Tony GonzalezKansas City, Atlanta1997-2013111
Antonio Gates*San Diego2003-Present99
Shannon SharpeDenver, Baltimore1990-200362
Jerry SmithWashington1965-197760
Jason Witten*Dallas2003-Present57


With 53 receiving yards on Sunday, Gates can join Gonzalez, JASON WITTEN and Pro Football Hall of Famer SHANNON SHARPE as the only tight ends in NFL history with at least 10,000 career receiving yards.

The NFL tight ends with at least 10,000 career receiving yards:

Player Team(s) Seasons Rec Yards
Source: NFL *Active
Tony GonzalezKansas City, Atlanta1997-20131,32515,127
Jason Witten*Dallas2003-Present93910,453
Shannon SharpeDenver, Baltimore1990-200381510,060
Antonio Gates*San Diego2003-Present7849,947


Great Gronk

New England Patriots tight end ROB GRONKOWSKI has caught 82 passes for 1,124 yards and 12 touchdowns this season.

With 76 receiving yards on Sunday against Buffalo, Gronkowski, who had 1,327 receiving yards in 2011, can join TONY GONZALEZ and JIMMY GRAHAM as the only tight ends in NFL history with multiple 1,200-yard receiving seasons.

The tight ends with multiple 1,200-yard receiving seasons in NFL history:

Player Season Rec Yards TDs
Source: NFL *Through Week 16
Tony Gonzalez20041021,2587
Tony Gonzalez2000931,2039
Jimmy Graham2011991,31011
Jimmy Graham2013861,21516
Rob Gronkowski2011901,32717
Rob Gronkowski*2014821,12412


Booming Beckham

New York Giants rookie wide receiver ODELL BECKHAM, JR. has 90 or more receiving yards in each of his past eight games.

With at least 90 receiving yards on Sunday against Philadelphia, Beckham can join Pro Football Hall of Famer MICHAEL IRVIN (1995) as the only players in NFL history to have at least 90 receiving yards in nine consecutive games.

Beckham's and Irvin's streaks of 90+ receiving yards:

Odell Beckham, Jr.

Week Rec Yards TDs
Source: NFL


Michael Irvin

Week Rec Yards TDs
Source: NFL


Terrific Trio

New York Giants rookie wide receiver ODELL BECKHAM, JR. and Tampa Bay rookie wide receiver MIKE EVANS each have 11 receiving touchdowns this season, while Carolina rookie KELVIN BENJAMIN has nine touchdown catches.

With one touchdown reception in Week 17 by Benjamin, they can become the first trio of rookies with at least 10 touchdown receptions each in the same season.

The rookie wide receivers through Week 16 with the most touchdown catches:

Player Team College Drafted Rec Yards TDs
Source: NFL
Odell Beckham, Jr.New York GiantsLouisiana StateNo. 12 overall791,12011
Mike EvansTampa BayTexas A&MNo. 7 overall6399711
Kelvin BenjaminCarolinaFlorida StateNo. 28 overall729999


Tremendous Teammates

New York Giants rookie wide receiver ODELL BECKHAM, JR. and Miami rookie wide receiver JARVIS LANDRY lead all NFL rookies with 79 receptions each. With five receptions in Week 17, both players can surpass EARL COOPER for the fifth-most receptions in a season by a rookie.

Beckham and Landry, who were college teammates at Louisiana State, can also become the first rookies from the same college to lead their team in receptions in the same season since the 1970 merger.

The NFL players with the most receptions in their rookie season:

Player Team Season Rec
Source: NFL *Through Week 16
Anquan BoldinArizona2003101
Eddie RoyalDenver200891
Terry GlennNew England199690
Reggie BushNew Orleans200688
Earl CooperSan Francisco198083
Odell Beckham, Jr.*New York Giants201479
Jarvis Landry*Miami201479


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NFL 2014 - What To Look For Week 17