2 Jan 2017

Washington blow chance of making NFL play-offs

6:56 pm on 2 January 2017

Quarterback Kirk Cousins threw a late interception as the Washington Redskins blew their chance at a playoff place with a 19-10 NFL home loss to the New York Giants.

Facing a team with nothing to play for, the Redskins were their own worst enemy in a listless performance.

Washington Redskins quarterback Kirk Cousins.

Washington Redskins quarterback Kirk Cousins. Photo: PHOTOSPORT

Cousins was twice picked off by Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie in the second half, with the second coming with less than 90 seconds left and the Redskins trailing 13-10.

After New York punted, Washington got the ball back one final time with six seconds left, but as they tried for a miracle play Jordan Reed's attempted lateral pass was picked off by Trevin Wade who ran it in for another touchdown.

The Redskins would have made the playoffs with a win provided the late game between the Green Bay Packers and Detroit Lions did not end in a tie, but they instead face an off-season of questions and recriminations.

Green Bay won that game 31-14 to clinch the NFC North Division.

The Packers (10-6) finished the regular season on a six-game winning streak and enter the NFC playoffs as the fourth seed.

They host the fifth seeded New York Giants in the opening round of the playoffs.

The Lions (9-7), who failed in their bid to win their first division title in 23 years, wound up seeded sixth and travel to third-seeded Seattle next week.

Meanwhile, the Giants will advance as the first wild card in the NFC.

The Kansas City Chiefs were crowned AFC West champions as they beat the San Diego Chargers 37-27 while the Oakland Raiders lost 24-6 to the Denver Broncos.

The Chargers announced that coach Mike McCoy would not return next season.

Another coach on his way out - San Francisco's Chip Kelly - saw his team lose as the 2-14 side squandered an 11-point lead to go down 25-23 to the Seattle Seahawks, who wrapped up the third seed in the NFC as West division champions.

All four of Matt Ryan's touchdown throws came in the first half as the Atlanta Falcons beat the New Orleans Saints 38-32 to secure a first-round bye in the post-season.

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers' incredibly slim chance of snatching a playoff place ended despite a 17-16 success against the Carolina Panthers.

The Bucs needed to win while hoping six other results went in their favour - including a tie between the Giants and the Redskins.

But before the game even kicked off, the Bucs' hopes were over when the much- changed Dallas Cowboys lost 27-13 to the Philadelphia Eagles.

The Pittsburgh Steelers won 27-24 in overtime against the Cleveland Browns, who wrapped up a miserable 1-15 season.

Tom Brady threw for three touchdowns and 276 yards as the New England Patriots won 35-14 against the Miami Dolphins to clinch home advantage throughout the playoffs.

Cincinnati Bengals beat the Baltimore Ravens 27-10 while Indianapolis defeated Jacksonville 24-20 and the Minnesota Vikings downed Chicago 38-10.

While the Tennessee Titans edged the Houston Texans in a 24-17 the New York Jets beat the Buffalo Bills 30-10.

Carson Palmer threw three touchdown passes as the Arizona Cardinals took out a season's worth of frustrations on the Los Angeles Rams in a 44-6 win.

So in the AFC New England and kansas City get the first week off while Miami play Pittsburgh and Oakland play Houston in the wildcard games.

In the NFC Dallas and Atlanta get the first week off and Detroit play Seattle and New York Giants play Green Bay in the wildcard games.