Weekend In Review – NFL Playoffs Feature Pair Of OT Games, Cowboys Fire Coach, Basketball, And More

Reviewing all the top playoffs and matchups from over the weekend Close games, with two going to overtime, highlighted the opening round of the NFL playoffs. The Minnesota Vikings,...

(Photo Credit: Wesley Hitt/Getty Images)

Reviewing all the top playoffs and matchups from over the weekend

Close games, with two going to overtime, highlighted the opening round of the NFL playoffs.

The Minnesota Vikings, by virtue of Kirk Cousins’ short touchdown toss to Kyle Rudolph, beat the New Orleans Saints 26-20 Sunday in the Superdome in OT. The Vikings advance to play the San Francisco 49ers.

In the late Sunday game, the Seattle Seahawks ground out a 17-9 victory over the Philadelphia Eagles after knocking out quarterback Carson Wentz (head injury). That left the battered Eagles in the hands of backup Josh McCown, 40, who had begun the season in retirement. The Seahawks move on to play the Green Bay Packers.

In Saturday’s games, the Houston Texans overcame a 16-0 deficit and took out the Buffalo Bills 22-19 in OT. They next play the Kansas City Chiefs. The Tennessee Titans went into Foxborough, Mass., and downed the New England Patriots 20-13. Patriots quarterback Tom Brady becomes a free agent March 18. While retirement is unlikely, Brady would only say “we’ll see what the future holds.” The Titans play the Baltimore Ravens, the AFC’s top seed.

Also: After days of seeming indecision, the Dallas Cowboys fired coach Jason Garrett after 9 ½ seasons. They’d already begun interviewing possible successors, including former Packers coach Mike McCarthy. The Cowboys finished 8-8 and missed the playoffs for the sixth time in Garrett’s tenure.

Basketball: The Los Angeles Lakers blocked 20 shots in Sunday night’s 106-99 victory over the Detroit Pistons. That was the most blocks since 2001 and one short of the club record. Anthony Davis had a season-high eight blocks. The Lakers have won five straight. … In college hoops, No. 14 Michigan State defeated No. 12 Michigan 87-69 on Sunday. In Saturday games, No. 7 Louisville, No. 9 Memphis and No. 10 Villanova lost.

Golf: Justin Thomas won the Sentry Tournament of Champions in Kapalua, Hawaii, needing three extra holes to defeat Patrick Reed and Xander Schauffele. It’s his second win of the season and 12th on the PGA Tour.

 
 
Post By: Larry Weisman, a longtime sportswriter for USA TODAY, blogs for Twistity.com. Follow him on Twitter @MrLarryWeisman

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