A division title could be secured and a cherished individual record has a chance to be broken when the Atlanta Falcons and New Orleans Saints square off at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome in a marquee Monday night matchup with very high stakes.
The Detroit Lionshave signed former Wayne State running back Joique Bell to their active roster, according to a person with knowledge of the situation. Bell had been on the New Orleans Saints’ practice squad.
Summing up the drama with 17 games left in the NFL season: NFC: One playoff spot left — the NFC East title game Sunday night at the Meadowlands. The winner of Cowboys-Giants is in, the loser’s out … The Packers locked the No. 1 seed last night … San Francisco clinches the second seed with a win at Rams Sunday, or one Saints loss in their last two games … The lesser of Niners-Saints is third seed … NFC East winner is fourth seed … Falcons, Lions have clinched last two seeds, in some order. Battle for fifth seed between Atlanta (9-5 entering tonight’s game at New Orleans) and Detroit (10-5) is significant — and Atlanta has the tiebreaker — because you’d much rather play a Wild Card game at the Giants or Cowboys than at either of the two teams in play for the third seed, San Francisco or New Orleans.
With a home win over the Atlanta Falcons on Monday night, the New Orleans Saints will clinch the NFC South division title. Based on the NFL’s flex scheduling plan, a Saints victory will also keep them from playing in the late-afternoon window on Sunday. If the Saints (11-3) beat the Falcons (9-5), their Week 17 Superdome finale will remain a 1 p.m. ET kickoff against the third-place team in the division, the Carolina Panthers (6-9). A loss means the Saints will join the Falcons—who host the last-place Tampa Bay Buccaneers (4-11)—at playing at 4:15 p.m. ET.