What To Look For - Week 17
What To Look For - Week 17

Here's what to look for during the final week of the 2015 NFL regular season


Atlanta wide receiver JULIO JONES leads the league with 127 receptions and 1,722 receiving yards this season.

With 127 receiving yards on Sunday against New Orleans, Jones would surpass Pro Football Hall of Famer JERRY RICE (1,848 yards in 1995) for the second-most receiving yards in a season in NFL history.

The players with the most receiving yards in a season in NFL history:

Player Team Season Yards
(Source: NFL)
Calvin JohnsonDetroit20121,964
Jerry RiceSan Francisco19951,848
Isaac BruceSt. Louis19951,781
Charley HenniganHouston Oilers19611,746
Julio JonesAtlanta20151,722*
Marvin HarrisonIndianapolis20021,722



With one week remaining in the 2015 regular season, at least three teams will advance to the playoffs after missing the postseason in 2014 -- KANSAS CITY (10-5), MINNESOTA (10-5) and WASHINGTON (8-7). 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.

Two additional teams that missed the playoffs last season are still in contention for a trip to Super Bowl 50 -- HOUSTON (8-7) and the NEW YORK JETS (10-5).

The 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)
20145 (Arizona, Baltimore, Dallas, Detroit, Pittsburgh)
20153* (Kansas City, Minnesota, Washington)



Through Week 16, NFL teams have combined to score 10,993 points (45.8 points per game).

With 658 points (41.1 points per game) in Week 17, the 2015 season will surpass 2012 (11,651) for the second-most points scored in a single season in NFL history (11,985 in 2013).

The most combined points scored in a single season in NFL history:

Season Points
(Source: NFL) *Through Week 16



Nine different quarterbacks have passed for 30 or more touchdowns in 2015, tied for the most in a single season in NFL history (2014).

With one touchdown pass on Sunday by Detroit quarterback MATTHEW STAFFORD (29) at Chicago or New York Jets quarterback RYAN FITZPATRICK (29) at Buffalo, this season would surpass 2014 for the most quarterbacks to throw at least 30 touchdown passes in a single season.

The quarterbacks to throw at least 30 touchdown passes this season:

Quarterback Team TD Passes
(Source: NFL)
Tom BradyNew England36
Blake BortlesJacksonville35
Carson PalmerArizona34
Eli ManningNew York Giants33
Cam NewtonCarolina33
Drew BreesNew Orleans31
Derek CarrOakland31
Russell WilsonSeattle31
Aaron RodgersGreen Bay30
Ryan FitzpatrickNew York Jets29
Matthew StaffordDetroit29



New Orleans quarterback DREW BREES passed for 412 yards and three touchdowns in the Saints' 38-27 win over Jacksonville. The performance marked Brees' 13th career game with at least 400 passing yards.

With at least 400 passing yards on Sunday at Atlanta, Brees would tie PEYTON MANNING (14) for the most 400-yard passing performances in NFL history.

The quarterbacks with the most 400-yard passing games in NFL history:

Quarterback Team(s) 400-Yard Games
(Source: NFL) *Pro Football Hall of Famer
Peyton ManningIndianapolis, Denver14
Drew BreesSan Diego, New Orleans13
Dan Marino*Miami13
Carson PalmerCincinnati, Oakland, Arizona8
Philip RiversSan Diego8
Ben RoethlisbergerPittsburgh8



With 109 rushing yards on Sunday against Tennessee, Indianapolis running back FRANK GORE would join Pro Football Hall of Famers EMMITT SMITH (11), CURTIS MARTIN (10), WALTER PAYTON (10) and BARRY SANDERS (10) as the only players in NFL history to rush for 1,000 yards in at least nine different seasons.

The players to rush for 1,000 yards in at least nine different seasons:

Player Seasons
(Source: NFL) *891 yards through Week 16
Emmitt Smith11
Curtis Martin10
Walter Payton10
Barry Sanders10
Frank Gore*8



Below is a sampling of kicking milestones that can be reached Sunday.

With a 50-yard field goal on Sunday at Kansas City, Oakland kicker SEBASTIAN JANIKOWSKI, who has converted 52 career kicks of at least 50 yards, would surpass JASON HANSON (52) for the most 50-yard field goals in NFL history.

New England kicker STEPHEN GOSTKOWSKI, who currently leads the NFL in scoring (147 points) and has previously done so four times in his career, can join Pro Football Hall of Famer DON HUTSON (five) and GINO CAPPELLETTI (five) as the only players to lead the league in points scored at least five times.

Gostkowski is tied with Minnesota kicker BLAIR WALSH for the most field goals made this season with 32 and can join Pro Football Hall of Famer LOU GROZA (five), WARD CUFF (four) and JACK MANDERS (four) as the only players to lead the league in field goals at least four times.


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