Wild cards hope to make deep playoff run



AGENCE FRANCE PRESSE

Published — Saturday 5 January 2013

Last update 4 January 2013 10:21 pm

| نسخة PDF Print News | A A

LOS ANGELES: With the National Football League’s regular season done and dusted, it’s time for the playoffs, and history shows that a team from the wild card weekend usually makes a deep run.
The fourth-seeded Washington Redskins in the NFC and fifth-seeded Indianapolis Colts in the AFC are two of eight teams in action this weekend trying to crash the Super Bowl party.
The 2012 NFL playoffs kick off with the wild card round, followed by the divisional round on January 12. Conference championship games will take place on January 20, ahead of the Super Bowl on Feb. 3.
The wild-card matchups are enticing, especially Sunday’s game between the Colts and the Baltimore Ravens. Long-time Baltimore linebacker Ray Lewis, who said Wednesday he will retire at season’s end, is making a final bid for glory.
“This team’s getting healthy and we’re going to hit our stride going forward in the playoffs,” said Ravens all-star running back Ray Rice.
The Colts and Ravens know each other well and the outcome could be determined by quarterbacks Andrew Luck and Joe Flacco who are meeting for the first time.
Rookie Luck threw two touchdown passes in week 17 as the Colts moved to 11-0, becoming just the second team in league history to win 11 or more games following a season with two or fewer victories.
“They refused, they refused to let anyone write their story of what they could or do not do,” Indianapolis head coach and cancer survivor Chuck Pagano said of his team.
Emotions will be running high on the Indianapolis sidelines as Pagano will be making just his second appearance following a successful battle against leukemia. He is also a former Ravens assistant from 2008-2011.
“You have one thing that you find out is that you’re a lot stronger than you think you are,” Pagano said of beating cancer.
“Have a positive attitude, wake up every day, have faith and have a belief that you’re going to beat it and you’re going to win.” The Colts used to be Baltimore’s team and that city’s fans have never forgiven the Irsay family for loading up the moving vans under the cover of darkness and bolting the city for Indianapolis in 1984.
To add a little more intrigue to the matchup, Lewis says his playing days are finished at the conclusion of the Ravens’ playoff run.
“I talked to my team and I talked to them about life in general,” Lewis said. “Everything that starts has an end. It’s just life. I’m just going in another phase of life.” The Redskins and the Seattle Seahawks are trying to extend their seasons behind a pair of rookie quarterbacks.
Rookie Redskins quarterback Robert Griffin III is coming off a Heisman Trophy win and he will lead Washington’s offense into a showdown against Seattle newcomer Russell Wilson.
Griffin was the number two overall pick in the draft while third round pick Wilson wasn’t even supposed to be the Seahawks starting quarterback. But he beat out Matt Flynn for the job and has never looked back.
FedEx Field, where the Redskins will host the game, is not far from where Wilson grew up.
“It’s pretty awesome. Obviously he was the number two pick overall and I was a third-round pick. So it’s a great opportunity to play a great quarterback, and their football team,” Wilson said. “But I’m playing the Redskins, we’re playing the Redskins. I’m not playing him.” In other wild-card contests, the Minnesota Vikings and Green Bay Packers will meet for the third time in six weeks, with each team credited with a win, and the Cincinnati Bengals will be riding a hot streak into Saturday’s game against the Houston Texans.

The winner of the Cincinnati-Houston game could move on to face the Denver Broncos, who enter the playoffs as the NFL’s hottest team, boasting an 11-game winning streak.

What's happening around Saudi Arabia

JEDDAH: A Saudi citizen was killed in shelling fired across the border from Yemen into the southwest of Saudi Arabia on Sunday, local media reported.A shell fell on a house around dawn in Najran province, civil defense department spokesman Ali bin Om...
JEDDAH: Female voters in Al-Ahsa have urged the authorities handling the municipal elections to drop the condition of presenting the national identity card while enrolling themselves in the voters’ list. Some women in Madinah too have appealed for mo...
JEDDAH: After the recent incident of a rat eating from a bowl at a well-known food outlet in a Jeddah mall came to light, residents have called for food hygiene ratings of restaurants and roadside eateries across the city.Although the municipality wo...
JEDDAH: A muezzin (one who recites the Adhaan) of a Riyadh mosque recently sprung a surprise in the Austrian tourist town of Zell am See by his Adhaan after taking permission from members of a musical band.Social media is abuzz with the news and vide...
RIYADH: A Sri Lankan national, who works as a cleaner in the Kingdom, was commended and rewarded by the Saudi Commission for Tourism and National Heritage (SCTNH) for returning a bag containing gold to its owner.“Prince Sultan bin Salman, president o...
RIYADH: Bangladesh State Minister for Foreign Affairs Mohammed Shahriar Alam arrived in Jeddah on Sunday to meet with his Saudi counterpart Nizar Madani on Monday.On arrival at the royal terminal, the minister was received by Director General of the...
RIYADH: A report of the Saudi Commission for Tourism and National Heritage predicts the rate of growth in job opportunities in the country's tourism sector between 2010 and 2020 will be 10 percent a year as compared to a global growth rate of 2.5 per...
JEDDAH: Two million meningitis vaccines have been distributed among health centers in 20 governorates and provinces across the Kingdom for domestic Haj pilgrims.It is mandatory for all pilgrims to be vaccinated against meningitis and for those coming...
JEDDAH: The Makkah governorate has announced four new road projects linking Makkah and Jeddah. The new roads will facilitate smoother and faster travel between the cities.An estimated 35 million people will benefit from the projects, which will inclu...
JEDDAH: A major disaster is waiting to happen in the fish market of Madinah because of the callous attitude of traders toward handling of gas cylinders. A visit to the market presents a dreadful picture of cylinders kept on top of each other without...
JEDDAH: Information and Culture Minister Adel Al-Toraifi has approved the appointment of Khalid Bo-Ali as editor in chief of the Eastern Province-based Alsharq Arabic newspaper. He was nominated for the post by the board of directors of the newspaper...
JEDDAH: Jamil Farsi, head of the Gold and Jewelry Committee at the Jeddah Chamber of Commerce and Industry (JCCI), says he expects 3,000 job opportunities to be created for Saudi women in the jewelry design and gold sector across the Kingdom, with ab...
JEDDAH: More than 50 visually challenged people successfully performed Umrah with the help of the Ebsar Foundation for the Visually Impaired and the Ambassadors of Volunteers organization under their program “Umrah for the visually impaired,” which w...
JEDDAH: Although the Ministry of Labor is opening its doors to receive complaints from private sector employees, many Saudi females employed in cosmetic and perfume shops in Madinah are not making complaints about being overworked due to fear of losi...
JEDDAH: Health Minister Dr. Khaled Al-Falih is set to increase the number of beds in all private sector hospitals, as per new implementation regulations adopted this year.The move will help address the problem of delays in public sector projects, as...

Stay Connected

Facebook