In the first round of the playoffs, a couple games went down to the wire, but the favorites held on in each contest. The top four seeds remain alive in each conference, but half of them will see their season end after Monday. Here's how it went down in Week 14 (click on the images to view the full conference on Yahoo!):
That leaves us with 12 teams competing for three jerseys:
The two participants in last year's Thunder Bowl are back as the defending champion Redlegs and the Doughboys look to make it back to the championship game. They're joined by the Hooligans, hoping to pull off one last victory before RB Ezekiel Elliott returns, and the Warm Bodies, who have been a threat all season. Click on matchup titles to view them on Yahoo!
The Redlegs have been favorites all season, and that continues this week, as they're projected to win by 14 points. Look for Zerger to get to his second-straight Thunder Bowl. For the Warm Bodies, they'll need huge games from LeSean McCoy and Kareem Hunt.
The Hooligans deserve a lot of praise for winning 10 games while dealing with the Ezekiel Elliott suspension, but I don't see them as seriously competing here. If they pull it off, they get Elliott back from the championship game, but I think the Doughboys will win easily.
There are some fascinating re-matches in the NFC semifinals. First, the 'Mericans face the Dirty Hippies, who knocked them out of the playoffs last season. And Lucky Enuf plays SoonerJack. Those two teams infamously played the 2008 OIL Bowl to a tie. Click on the matchup title to view on Yahoo!
The 'Mericans were unlucky enough to face Le'Veon Bell (and the Hippies) in the first round of the 2016 playoffs, and Bell's 51 points knocked them out of the championship chase. But Trovillo no longer has Bell, and Cliburn's squad is stacked. This is a revenge game that (I hope) will get ugly.
SoonerJack rode a lot of luck to notch 10 wins while averaging only 130.90 points per game, but here is where is luck runs out. No team is projected to dominate Week 15 like Lucky Enuf. Pyle gets back to the OIL Bowl for the first time since 2008.
The PFC field includes the 2015 champions, the 2016 champions, the 2015 top seed, and the 2017 newcomer in the Vandals (whose manager, if not team name, is new for 2017). Click the matchup title to view on Yahoo!
These teams are incredibly even-matched. The Enforcers are projected to win, but I'm deeming it too close to call. The Dirty Dogs are the defending champions and number-one seed, but this will be a shootout.
This is another matchup that may be too close to call, as the Vandals are favored by just one point. But there is a lot of intrigue here, as the Vandals originally had the two-seed and first-round bye before a stat correction gave it to the Brawlers. The Vandals then had a very tough matchup in Round One that came close to knocking him off. Now, he gets to have revenge against the team that stole his bye week.
It's finally here: the PLAYOFFS. 18 teams are competing for three conference trophies and one OIL trophy. This year is a mix of old and new as perennial contenders and newly-competitive managers will battle over the next four weeks. To the matchups!
Click on team logos to view manager pages on okiraqi.org. Click matchup titles to view the matchup on Yahoo!
Congratulations to Zerger, Cliburn, Pyle, Lutonsky, Buehre, and Neely on finishing in the top two in their respective conferences. Enjoy your wins this week.
For the second-consecutive season, defending champion Lance Zerger and his Redlegs have clinched a first-round bye. Joining him is Sir Neely and his Hooligans, making their first appearance in the top two.
Joining Zerger and Neely in the AFC playoffs are Green, Nye, Schuster (making the playoffs for the first time), and Peacock.
Both these managers are returning to the playoffs after being strong contenders in 2016, but neither could pull off the championship last season. Look for the Doughboys to make a strong statement that they are not over their 2016 Thunder Bowl defeat.
After a wild Rivalry Week, the playoffs are set. Look for a comprehensive Playoffs Preview post later. In the meantime, click on the standings to view each conference's playoffs bracket on Yahoo!
The league history spreadsheet is updated as well. All 42 manager sheets are up to date and the main page (Rankings) is only missing the data for "Points Against."
With one week remaining in the regular season, seven of 18 playoff spots are still up for grabs. Rivalry Week will be huge. Click on the images below to view the league on Yahoo!.
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.
Happy Thanksgiving week, everyone. Here are your games of the week. Click the title to view the matchups on Yahoo!.
I thought Brake's status as a contender was shot when star QB Deshaun Watson tore his ACL. After all, the Brawlers' other QB was Ben Roethlisberger, who had not lived up to expectations to that point in the season. But he's since turned it on, and Brake is still contending for a first-round bye. He has the most points in the PFC and, at 7-4, is one game back from the Vandals and Dirty Dogs. As long as he finishes with the same record as one of those two, he should receive that first-round bye.
Similarly, Gray seemed doomed when QB Aaron Rodgers was lost for the season, but the Drifters have rolled on. At 7-4, but with the seventh-most points in the PFC, Gray doesn't appear to have a legit chance at a first-round bye.
Since Brake already has 44.10 points from WR Jamison Crowder and RB Samaje Perine, I'm picking him to get a little closer to that first-round bye.
2013 champion Cobb is still contending at 7-4, but he needs at least one more win to guarantee a playoff spot. Unfortunately, he faces #3 Lucky Enuf this week and #2 SoonerJack during Rivalry Week. Meanwhile, Lucky Enuf is one game back from a first-round bye. Above him are 9-2 Cliburn and Bruesch, but Pyle has many more points than Bruesch. The hope of a first-round bye is still alive for Pyle, but he absolutely has to win out. I think that will happen, starting this week.
This is a must-win for the Cocks as Peacock needs to win a seventh game to have a chance at the playoffs (and needs to win out to guarantee a playoff spot). And that's what I think happens this week against Nye. Granted, Peacock already has a big lead thanks to Jamison Crowder and Samaje Perine, but I'm also banking on Jared Goff performing well against a New Orleans defense missing Defensive Rookie of the Year candidate Marshon Lattimore. Look for the Cocks pull out the victory and make a playoff run.
Just two more games are left in the regular season, and we have our first playoff berths clinched:
The above image is taken from our Twitter feed. Check it out, and let the commish know if you want an official team Twitter account. Here are the full standings. Click on the image to view them on the Yahoo! page:
The Lucky Enuf Twitter account boasted on Tuesday that their matchup against the Hangovers had to be the game of the week . . . but they were wrong. While #3 vs. #4 is impressive, we've got #1 vs. #3 in the PFC. That's the Game of the Week. Click on the title to view the matchup on Yahoo!.
Although Brake and the Brawlers have been the more dominant team thus far, I think this sets up well for a Vandals upset. Lutonsky has Russell Wilson at QB, who I predict to have a huge game against Atlanta. Meanwhile, Brake is relying on Ben Roethlisberger and Le'Veon Bell . . . who both play on Thursday night on just four days rest. I am picking Lutonsky to upset Brake, but I still think Brake is the better team moving forward.
The good news for the Hangovers is that QB Cam Newton is fresh off a 46-point game. The bad news? He's on a bye this week. That's why Duffy is an underdog this week against Pyle. Lucky Enuf appears to be the favorite heading towards the playoffs, and he's not dealing with byes like Duffy. I do see a path to victory for the Hangovers, though, but only if the entire Steelers team lays an egg Thursday night.
A matchup between a team with a losing record and the number-three team doesn't look like game of the week material at first glance. Neely is fresh off losing RB Ezekiel Elliott to suspension and losing RB Rob Kelley to IR. Brosh's QB (Tyrod Taylor) was just benched in Buffalo, and WR T.Y. Hilton and TE Austin Seferian-Jenkins are both on bye. But this is a playoff game for Brosh's Vultures. At 4-6, he needs to win out to have a chance at a playoff berth. Meanwhile, the Hooligans need to win if they want to contend for a first-round bye in the playoff. So, yeah, a lot more playoff implications here than you'd think.
I'm picking the Vultures to eke out a win, keeping their playoff hopes alive . . . but it won't be pretty. I'm thinking a max of 120 points for the victor.
Finally, the playoff picture is becoming clear. Just three weeks remain in the regular season, with Week 13 being Rivalry Week. Click on the standings to view them on Yahoo!.
It's Veterans Day weekend, and the OIL has busted out the Salute to Service logos and hoodies. Click on the title to view the detailed matchup at Yahoo!.
It doesn't get much better than this: #1 vs. #2. Zerger's Redlegs have clearly been the more dominant team, but Neely didn't get to 7-2 by accident. He's played a dangerous game relying on Ezekiel Elliott, but so far, so good. Normally, I would pick the Redlegs to beat the Hooligans based on rosters alone, but Zerger is missing TE Zach Ertz and WR Tyreek Hill. Further, his QB (Philip Rivers) is facing the Jacksonville defense, which has given up the fewest points to opposing QBs. On the other side, the Hooligans have the number-one fantasy QB right now in Russell Wilson. If RB Ezekiel Elliott escapes this week without suspension (again), I'm picking the Hooligans to upset the defending champs. If Elliott finally starts serving his six-game suspension, it's 8-2 for the Redlegs.
If either one of these teams wishes to compete for one of those first-round byes in the playoffs, they'll have to win this matchup. Even though the Enforcers average more points per game and have a higher OPR, I'm picking Team Tadlock to win this behind red-hot Tyrod Taylor, WR Antonio Brown against a Colts defense missing several key pieces, and free-agent diamond-in-the-rough TE Austin Seferian-Jenkins.
Similar to Neely, Henderson's DARC NARCS have gotten this far on the legs of RB Ezekiel Elliott. If he is suspended this week, I'm picking Lucky Enuf to get the win. If Elliott isn't suspended . . . I'm still picking Pyle. I just think his team is that much better than Henderson's.