The last week of the season is reserved for our rivalry games, and 2017 is no different. Beginning with the AFC, let's go through each of the Rivalry Week matchups as we prepare for the playoffs. The winner of last year's Rivalry Week matchup is the home team.
The overall record between the two teams is listed beneath the matchup. Click the matchup title to view the matchups on Yahoo!. For an explanation of the rivalries, click here.
Although Zerger is number-one and the returning champion, he has never defeated Roe's Rebel Alliance. That changes this year, as Roe is having a horrible year and Zerger is the odds-on favorite to win it all.
Sawtooths manager Reed has decided he'll never again draft Danny Woodhead after getting burned by the injury-prone RB for the second-consecutive season. But the real culprit behind his late-season slide is probably QB Dak Prescott, who has been abysmal since losing RB Ezekiel Elliott. Look for Peacock to pull out the victory and make the playoffs two years in a row.
Let's be honest: Fitzgerald isn't that concerned with this matchup. He's spent the 2017 season on a deployment to the Horn of Africa, and he has the 4-8 record to prove it. Meanwhile, Lynn and the Brewmasters have overcome the loss of QB Deshaun Watson thanks to the recentplay of QB Ben Roethlisberger. Look for the Brew Crew to win and stay in contention for a playoff spot.
The tables have turned! War Pony manager Venable took the league by storm when he won the first two AFC championships. But Neely pulled off the upset in last year's Rivalry Week and he is now in contention for a first-round bye . . . even after losing RB Ezekiel Elliott. I'm picking the Hooligans.
Musselman has never beaten Nye, and I don't think that changes here. Still, I love this rivalry between two guys who were roommates and in the same humvee in Iraq for a year.
Holy, shit. Don't look now, but Schuster is one win away from making the playoffs for the first time in his OIL career. All he has to do is beat the Vultures, who've not exactly set the world on fire this year. Sorry, Brosh. I'm picking the Negligent Discharges.
This is the Game of the Week in the NFC. Cobb needs to win clinch a playoff spot, and Bruesch needs to win to have a shot at a first-round bye. I'm picking Cobb to defeat SoonerJack and put the Dogs of War back in the playoffs.
Hangovers manager Adam Duffy has been mighty quiet ever since Cliburn convinced him his favorite NFL team was threatening to sue him over a stupid fantasy football logo. Or maybe Duff has been quiet because he's seen player after player succumb to injury. Regardless, he needs to win to guarantee a playoff spot. He can still make the playoffs with a loss, due to having the third-most points in the league (and the third-highest points against). But he's missing even more players this week, as WRs Kelvin Benjamin and Amari Cooper are out. Look for the 'Mericans to win their 11th game and lock up the number-one seed.
Pyle and Lucky Enuf are one win away from their second-straight first-round bye. But Schmidt is always a thorn in his side. Just look at the overall record: although Pyle has a vastly better overall record, he's still just .500 against Dead Again. I'm picking Pyle, but, hey, anything can happen during Rivalry Week.
Wait. Maybe this is the Game of the Week. If Trovillo and the Hippies win, they're in the playoffs. Period. If Henderson and the DARC NARCS win, they can make the playoffs with a loss by the Hangovers and Dogs of War. That would be a phenomenal turn of events after Henderson's season went south with the loss of RB Ezekiel Elliott. Alas, I don't think it's going to happen. Chalk up another playoff appearance for Trovillo.
This matchup is all about pride, as neither team has a shot at the playoffs. Look for Jessen to win his second-straight Rivalry Week matchup against Rogers and the AMMODOGS.
Baldwin's season began with such promise, as RB Kareem Hunt looked like the OIL MVP, but Hunt cooled, WR Odell Beckham, Jr. was placed on IR, and the Roughnecks limped their way to five wins. Meanwhile, Finch's team was a nightmare from the start, as first-round pick RB David Johnson was lost for the season in Week One. Look for Baldwin to win this matchup between former roommates.
The Nobodies have been playing spoiler ever since it became clear they weren't making the playoffs, most recently beating number-one SoonerJack. Now, they can knock their biggest rival out of the playoffs: the ultimate spoiler move. But Morgan's Whackers have been scratching and clawing ever since losing QB Aaron Rodgers to IR. It won't be easy, but I'm picking Leal to upset the Whackers.
Defending champion Buehre can lock up a first-round bye with a win against McKay and the hated Orangebloods. And that's what I think will happen here. McKay has been treading water at .500 all season, but he is no match for the stacked Dirty Dogs.
First of all, congratulations to Mitchell. His Nightmares won their second game of the season to avoid setting an OIL record at 1-12. Now, though, they face perennial contender Brake, who I think will beat them handily in Rivalry Week.
For Gray, it's simple: win this game, and you're in the playoffs. For The Xtreme, it's a little more complicated, but Bellar can still make the playoffs with a win and losses by the Orangebloods (likely) and the Red Ball Express (possible). That being said, I don't think those other matchups will matter because I'm picking the Drifters to return to the playoffs.
Believe it or not, despite not looking like a contender all season, the Express can make the playoffs with a win over Pierre. Someone should let Hodge know because I'm not sure he's even paying attention (text me if I'm wrong, Hodgie!).
I did not expect to see these two ranked ninth and 10th, but that's where we are. Technically, the Chiefs can still make the playoffs with a win, a lot of points, and several losses ahead of him. Tadlock can make the playoffs and a couple strategic losses ahead of him as well. But I'm picking Pennington to win . . . only to be disappointed by not making the playoffs afterwards.
I'm picking the Enforcers in this battle of former First Platoon soldiers. Cordes just hasn't had the luck this year. Look for Straily to win his ninth game and possibly position himself for a first-round bye.
This is the newest rivalry in the PFC and may be revisited after the season. Unfortunately, it won't be giving us much intrigue this year as the Vandals are huge favorites. Look for Lutonsky to clinch that number-one seed.