Football

November 23, 2013

NFL Insider: Charean Williams’ five cents

1. The Baltimore Ravens weren’t a good bet to make the playoffs before the season started; oddsmakers had them a minus-130 bet on the “no playoffs” prop. But even though they have lost five of their past seven, the Ravens still have a chance to avoid becoming the 15th defending Super Bowl champion to miss the playoffs. Only 1 1/2 games out of the final wild-card spot, the Ravens have three home games in 15 days. They are 36-8 at home under John Harbaugh.

My five cents

1. The Baltimore Ravens weren’t a good bet to make the playoffs before the season started; oddsmakers had them a minus-130 bet on the “no playoffs” prop. But even though they have lost five of their past seven, the Ravens still have a chance to avoid becoming the 15th defending Super Bowl champion to miss the playoffs. Only 1 1/2 games out of the final wild-card spot, the Ravens have three home games in 15 days. They are 36-8 at home under John Harbaugh.

2. The Houston Texans are expected to release quarterback Matt Schaub in March, designating him a June 1 cap casualty. He will count $3.5 million against the 2014 cap.

3. How much do the Indianapolis Colts miss receiver Reggie Wayne? With him, the Colts averaged 26.7 points per game and converted 42.7 percent of their third downs. Without him, they are averaging 21.7 points and converting only 31.6 percent of their third downs.

4. Denver Broncos linebacker Von Miller set a franchise record with 18.5 sacks last season. Since his return from a six-game suspension, the former Texas A&M star has only two sacks in four games. But the Broncos’ defense has played better, allowing 3.3 fewer points per game and 89.3 fewer yards per game.

5. Peyton Manning is 37. Tom Brady is 36. They meet for the 14th time, with Brady holding a 9-4 advantage. Manning, with a 163-71 regular-season record and four MVP awards, arguably is the greatest regular-season quarterback in history. But Brady, with a 17-7 playoff record, three Super Bowl rings and two Super Bowl MVP awards, arguably is the greatest postseason quarterback in history.

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