Around the NFC North: Week 17

Giants - 19 :: Vikings - 20

The Vikes fell behind 19-9 in the fourth quarter and things weren't looking good.  That is, until Tarvaris Jackson hooked up with Bernard Berrian for a 54-yard touchdown to cut the Giants' lead down to 2 points.  That slim lead meant that a field goal would win the game for Minnesota and clinch them an NFC North title.  As the clock expired, that is exactly what happened.  Ryan Longwell nailed a kick from 50 yards out to win the game and the NFC North for the Vikings.

The Daily Norseman was ecstatic after the win.

It wasn't necessarily pretty, and it wasn't always fun to watch. . .but by God. . .

THE MINNESOTA VIKINGS ARE THE 2008 NFC NORTH DIVISION CHAMPIONS!!

And they earned it by going out and doing what they needed to do.  They didn't "back in," and they didn't wait for Chicago to lose (even though it was pretty nice that they did). . .nope, they won their game, and they got into the post-season.

Bears - 24 :: Texans - 31

With the Raiders' upset of the Buccaneers and the Eagles' win over the Cowboys, the Bears would have made the playoffs had they won on Sunday.  Problem is they didn't.  The Texans and Bears went back and forth, and eventually it was Houston that came away with a win. 

The Texans trailed 10-0 at one time but then scored three unanswered touchdowns.  A Bears TD cut down the margin, but a Texans field goal and another TD made it a 14-point game.  The lead went on to become 7 points when Kyle Orton scored a late touchdown, but Chicago simply ran out of time, as did their playoff hopes.

Windy City Gridiron was upset after the game, as you can imagine.

It took Houston a quarter to realize what the rest of the league already knew.  The Bears cannot stop anybody in the pass game.  They cannot stop wide receivers, they cannot stop tight ends, they cannot stop tackle eligibles and they cannot stop quarterbacks in a wildcat formation.  The Bears could not stop the Texans pass game and as soon as they overplayed the pass, the Houston run game tore us up.

The Vikings are the only NFC North team alive and will host the Philadelphia Eagles in the first-round of the playoffs on Sunday at 4:30 p.m. ET.

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