The BALTIMORE RAVENS defeated Cleveland, 31-15, to clinch a first-round bye and homefield advantage throughout the AFC playoffs. The Ravens are the No. 1 seed in the AFC for first time in franchise history.
With their 23-20 win at Tampa Bay on Saturday, the HOUSTON TEXANS clinched their second-consecutive AFC South division title.
The MINNESOTA VIKINGS, who host the GREEN BAY PACKERS on Monday Night Football, clinched a playoff berth for the second time in the past three seasons with the Los Angeles Rams‘ loss at San Francisco on Saturday night. Green Bay can clinch the NFC North division title with a victory on Monday.
On Saturday, the NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS defeated Buffalo, 24-17, to clinch their 11th-consecutive AFC East division title, the most consecutive division titles won by one team in NFL history.
The BUFFALO BILLS, GREEN BAY PACKERS, MINNESOTA VIKINGS and SAN FRANCISCO 49ERS have each qualified for the postseason after missing the playoffs last season. From 1990-2019 – a streak of 30 consecutive years – at least four teams have qualified for the playoffs in every season that were not in the postseason the year before.
New Orleans wide receiver MICHAEL THOMAS had 12 receptions for 136 yards and a touchdown in the Saints‘ 38-28 victory at Tennessee.
Thomas has 145 receptions in 2019 and surpassed Pro Football Hall of Famer MARVIN HARRISON (143 in 2002) for the most receptions in a single season in NFL history.
Thomas, who leads the NFL with 1,688 receiving yards this season, has 5,475 receiving yards in his first four seasons and surpassed Pro Football Hall of Famer RANDY MOSS (5,396) for the most receiving yards in a player’s first four seasons in league annals.
The BALTIMORE RAVENS …
… rushed for 243 yards in their Week 16 win at Cleveland. The Ravens are the seventh team since 1970 and first since the 1978 KANSAS CITY CHIEFS (eight) and 1978 NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS (11) with at least eight games of 200-or-more rushing yards in a single season.
Baltimore has 3,073 rushing yards in 2019 and joined the 1978 NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS (3,165 rushing yards) and 1973 BUFFALO BILLS (3,088) as the only teams with at least 3,000 rushing yards in a single season in league annals.
With quarterback LAMAR JACKSON (1,206 rushing yards) and running back MARK INGRAM (1,018), the Ravens are the seventh team in NFL history and first since the 2009 CAROLINA PANTHERS (JONATHAN STEWART and DEANGELO WILLIAMS) to have two players with at least 1,000 rushing yards in a single season.