Vikings offense continues to be missing in loss to Seattle

SEATTLE (AP) — While the Minnesota Vikings are still fully in control of their path to the postseason, Adam Thielen knows it’s starting to slip away. Ten points last week in New England. Seven points on Monday night in an ugly 21-7 loss to the Seattle Seahawks. It’s not good enough. The Vikings know it, and the frustration is beginning to build. “We’re fighting as an offense, we’re trying to get something going. We just need a spark. We need a spark and we need it fast,” Thielen said. “I…

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Chiefs clinch playoff spot with hard-fought 27-24 overtime win over Ravens

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Harrison Butker atoned for a 43-yard miss as time expired with a 36-yard field goal in overtime, and the Kansas City Chiefs stopped the Baltimore Ravens on fourth down to clinch a playoff spot with a 27-24 victory Sunday. The Chiefs (10-2) twice converted on fourth down before Patrick Mahomes threw a tying touchdown pass to Damien Williams with 53 seconds left. Moments later, Justin Houston strip-sacked Lamar Jackson to give Butker a chance to win the game for Kansas City in regulation. He missed that…

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Week 14 NFL picks against the spread

Last week: 8-7 Weeks 1 through 13: 87-88-5 Home team shown in bold. Odds taken from Odds Shark. Green Bay (-4.5) vs. Atlanta This is a matchup of two disappointing teams who had playoff aspirations before the season began. The Packers made a coaching change after an embarrassing loss to the Cardinals last week, which was much-needed. Despite mediocre play (for his standards) so far this season, I can’t see an Aaron Rodgers-led team losing two in a row at home to average opponents. Pick: Green Bay (-4.5) Kansas City (-6.5) vs.…

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Rams’ Gurley admits NFL rushing title would be “pretty cool”

THOUSAND OAKS, Calif. (AP) — Todd Gurley probably would have won his first NFL rushing title last year if the Los Angeles Rams hadn’t rested every key starter in their season finale. Gurley was sanguine about the decision at the time, saying all the right things about the bigger picture and the Rams’ playoff goals. With Gurley in the NFL rushing lead again as the regular season heads into its final weeks, the superstar running back is telling the real story about the end of 2017. “Yeah, I was lying,”…

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2 newcomers set to play for Denver on Sunday

ENGLEWOOD, Colo. (AP) — The Denver Broncos didn’t bring cornerback Jamar Taylor and wide receiver Andre Holmes on board this week just to fill in at practice. “They’re both dressing” Sunday at San Francisco, coach Vance Joseph said. “You’re going to see Andre out there playing (special) teams and playing on the offense. Jamar is going to be our fourth corner this week.” With cornerback Chris Harris Jr . (fractured fibula) and wide receiver Emmanuel Sanders (ruptured Achilles tendon) becoming the fifth and sixth opening-day starters to suffer major injuries,…

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Comfortable Cowboys? NFC East leaders say they can’t be

FRISCO, Texas (AP) — Dallas safety Jeff Heath figures there’s a world outside his locker room where people seek comfort in their jobs. The Cowboys are about to get a test of the notion that they’re never supposed to get comfortable in their line of work. “I think the coaches do a good job kind of keeping us sharp, keeping us on edge,” Heath said. “You just have to understand that comes with this game.” Before the four-game winning streak that propelled them to sole possession of first in the…

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Kyle Shanahan off to rough start as 49ers coach

SANTA CLARA, Calif. (AP) — Kyle Shanahan’s coaching tenure hasn’t quite gotten off to the greatest start in San Francisco. He lost his first nine games with the 49ers last year before the arrival of Jimmy Garoppolo provided a late-season spark with five straight wins to close a 6-10 campaign. With Garoppolo sidelined by a season-ending knee injury in Week 3 this year, the Niners have started the season 2-10 for the second straight year under Shanahan. Shanahan is just the fifth coach to begin his tenure with a team…

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Bengals receiver A.J. Green out for the season with injury

CINCINNATI (AP) — Bengals receiver A.J. Green will be sidelined for the rest of the season with an injured toe on his right foot. The Bengals placed him on injured reserve Wednesday. Green got hurt on Oct. 28, missed three games with the injury, and returned last Sunday against Denver. He aggravated it while running a route, and he’s getting medical opinions on whether he should have surgery. Green finishes with 46 catches for 694 yards — both career lows — and six touchdowns. The Bengals also activated cornerback Davontae…

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Steelers, police investigating fight involving female fan

PITTSBURGH (AP) — The Pittsburgh Steelers are looking into an altercation in the stands involving a female fan during Sunday night’s game against the Los Angeles Chargers. The incident happened near the end of Los Angeles’ 33-30 victory. Photos published by the Pittsburgh Current and video presented to KDKA-TV showed two men, one wearing a suit featuring the Chargers’ logo and the other dressed in black, arguing. A woman dressed in a Chargers jersey attempted to intervene. The man in black briefly grabbed the woman by the throat before letting…

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