by Bodog - 12/30/2005
With the NFL playoffs just around the corner and with four postseason berths up for grabs, Week 17 is poised to be a fantastic finish to the regular season. Bodog, as always, has posted the odds.
"This late in the season, the stakes are high as teams fight to secure the last few spots for the postseason," says Calvin Ayre, Founder and CEO of Bodog. "Even for those teams already out of playoff contention, a last run at a formidable enemy should bring out the best in these players. This New Year's weekend will be a showcase of excitement on the gridiron."
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After defeating the Indianapolis Colts 28-13 last weekend and clinching home field throughout the playoffs, the Seattle Seahawks (13-2) head to Lambeau Field to face the Green Bay Packers (3-12) in a game that could mark Brett Favre's farewell. Fittingly, Seattle coach Mike Holmgren, who mentored Favre and coached Green Bay to victory in Super Bowl XXXI, will be on hand. The game could also see Seahawks running back Shaun Alexander break the record for the most touchdowns in a season if he can find the end zone for the 28th time. With the Seahawks expected to rest many of their starters, Bodog bookmakers have opened the line with Green Bay as 4-point favorites.
Elsewhere, it's a must-win game for the Carolina Panthers (10-5), who visit Atlanta to face a team that has beaten them seven straight times in the Georgia Dome. A victory over the Falcons (8-7) will secure an NFC playoff berth for the Panthers. Bodog bookmakers opened Carolina as a 4.5-point favorite.
Another key game this weekend takes place in Kansas City , where the playoff-hopeful Chiefs (9-6) host the Cincinnati Bengals (11-4). You can bet Cincinnati will be looking to give Dick Vermeil something to cry about. The Bengals, who clinched the AFC North crown two weeks ago, are looking to rebound from a Week 16 loss to Buffalo that cost them a first-round bye.
Vermeil's Chiefs, on the other hand, face an uphill battle as they vie for the postseason. The Chiefs, who are favored by 7 points, will need a win and a loss by the Pittsburgh Steelers to earn the final AFC wild-card spot. The Steelers host the lowly Detroit Lions.
Coming off a strong performance against the New York Giants in Week 16, the Washington Redskins (9-6) will look to grab a wild-card spot with a win on New Year's Day against another NFC East foe, the Philadelphia Eagles (6-9). The Redskins' season can be best characterized as a roller-coaster ride. They started 3-0, went into a 2-6 tailspin, and now have run off four straight wins to get back into playoff contention. Can the Super Bowl runner-ups eat up the Redskins' chances for postseason life? Washington is a touchdown favorite on the road.
And in a battle of another sort, the Houston Texans (2-13) visit the San Francisco 49ers (3-12) in a game referred to as the "Bush Bowl". A Houston loss will secure the Texans the first overall pick in the 2006 NFL Draft - a selection that will undoubtedly land them Heisman Trophy winner and USC running back Reggie Bush. A 49ers' loss and Bush could be bound for the Bay Area. Bodog bookmakers opened the line with the Texans as 1.5-point favorites.
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