The fans of the Kansas City Chiefs, Oakland Raiders, and the San Diego Chargers, can finally breathe a sigh of relief as the 2012 season as finally come to an end. The season has been less than spectacular for these three teams and fans should expect many changes ahead in the coming months. On the other hand, Denver fans are excited about having Peyton Manning as their quarterback and are looking forward to the playoffs.
However, before the playoffs can begin we must have the recap of week 17 in which Denver was fighting Kansas City for a possible number one seed in the playoffs, and where San Diego and Oakland were each trying to finish the season with a win.
Kansas City @ Denver
The Indianapolis Colts gave quarterback a home for 13 seasons, 14 if you count 2011 when Manning didn't play, and today the Colts gave another gift to their former quarterback and his new team the Denver Broncos. In beating their division rival Houston Texans, the Colts gave Denver the opportunity, if they beat Kansas City, to have the number one seed and home field advantage throughout the playoffs. Denver seized the opportunity and pummeled the Kansas City Chiefs 38-3.
Denver scored one touchdown in the first quarter on a Knowshon Moreno three-yard touchdown run. Denver would score twice in the second quarter, on a 11-yard pass and a 16-yard pass from Manning to Eric Decker. Kansas City scored their only points of the game, a field goal, in the second quarter.
In the second half Denver scored on a Manning 13-yard touchdown pass to Demaryius Thomas, on a one-yard run by Lance Ball, and on a 42-yard field goal by kicker Matt Prater.
Manning stayed in the game for three quarters, racking up 304 passing yards, three touchdowns and no interceptions. Brock Osweiler, Denver's first round pick in this year's draft, played quarterback in the fourth quarter completing two passes, for 12 yards.
In the running game, Denver got good production out of Jacob Hester, 55 yards, Lance Ball, 66 yards and a touchdown, and Knowshon Moreno, 44 yards and a touchdown. In the receiving game Thomas and Decker would combine for 14 receptions, 198 receiving yards and three touchdowns.
As good as Denver played today was how poorly Kansas City played. Kansas City failed to score a touchdown, had only eight first downs, had only 119 total yards, and allowed Denver's defense to sack Brady Quinn four times.
In what hopefully will be Quinn's last performance in a Chiefs uniform, the quarterback completed only seven passes for 49 yards. The running game saw Jamaal Charles rush for only 53 yards on 14 attempts, while four other rushers added only 40 more yards.
The receiving corps was nothing to write home about either, as the Chiefs only had the 49 passing yards, with leading receiver Tony Moeaki having only 21 receiving yards on two receptions.
Kansas City will finish the season with a record of 2-13 and will "fight" Jacksonville for the number one spot in the 2013 NFL Draft.
Denver finishes the season with a 13-3 record, an 11 game win streak, and will be watching wild-card weekend to find out who their opponent will be in the divisional round of the playoffs.
Oakland @ San Diego
For the second week in a row, the San Diego Chargers prevented an opposing quarterback from winning their first game as a starter. Last week it was Greg McElroy and this week it was Terrelle Pryor as the Chargers beat the Raiders 24-21.
San Diego took care of all the scoring in the first quarter as they scored on 99-yard kickoff return for a touchdown by Michael Spurlock and on a 30-yard Nick Novak field goal. Oakland would get on the board in the second quarter scoring on a nine-yard touchdown pass from Pryor to Darrius Heyward-Bey. However, San Diego would score again on a 11-yard pass from Philip Rivers to Antonio Gates, and the Charges led 17-7 at halftime.
A third quarter 34-yard touchdown pass from Rivers to Danario Alexander would put San Diego up 24-7 going into the fourth quarter. In the fourth quarter Oakland would score on a three-yard touchdown run by Pryor and on a five-yard pass from Pryor to Denarius Moore to make the score 24-21.
Oakland would attempt the onside kick but it would be recovered by San Diego.
Pryor did okay in the game as he finished with 13 pass completions, 150 passing yards, two touchdowns and only one interception. Pryor also contributed 49 rushing yards and a rushing touchdown.
Running back Darren McFadden did not finish his season on a good note, as he accumulated only 57 yards on 19 carries. The receiving game did okay with Rod Streater finishing the game with 77 yards, Brandon Myers had 53 yards, and Moore and Heyward-Bey each had a touchdown reception.
For San Diego, Rivers also completed only 13 passes throwing for 151 yards, two touchdowns and no interceptions. Jackie Battle and Ronnie Brown got the bulk of the carries for the Chargers at running back but only managed 57 yards on 24 attempts.
The leading receiver for San Diego in this game was Eddie Royal who accumulated 61 yards on four pass receptions.
With the win San Diego finishes the game with a 7-9 record and missing the playoffs for the third season in a row. With the loss Oakland finishes the season with a 4-12 record.