After this weekend of NFL Divisional Round playoff action, which was one of the most exciting in NFL postseason history, three former Terps officially punched their tickets to the Conference Championship games.
Los Angeles Rams rookie running back Jake Funk and second-year safety Antoine Brooks Jr. advanced to the NFC Championship with a 30-27 thrilling win over Tampa Bay and Cincinnati Bengals second-year linebacker Keandre Jones advanced to the AFC Championship with a 19-16 win over Tennessee. Both games were won with a walk-off field goal.
Funk saw the field for just under 60% of the Rams’ special teams snaps and Brooks played in 45% of the special teams snaps. Jones played in over 60% of the Bengals’ snaps on special teams.
Jones and the Bengals will travel to Kansas City to face the Chiefs in the AFC Championship game on Sunday at 3 p.m. EST while Funk, Brooks and the Rams will host division rival San Francisco in the NFC Championship game on Sunday at 6:30 p.m. EST.
- Buffalo Bills wide receiver Stefon Diggs struggled in one of the most thrilling postseason games in NFL history on Sunday. He caught three passes for seven yards on six targets and also converted a two-point conversion late in the game, but the Bills were outlasted 42-36 by the Kansas City Chiefs in overtime. There were a total of 25 points scored in the final two minutes of regulation and the Chiefs tied the game with a 13-second march down the field for a field goal. Kansas City won the coin toss in overtime and scored a touchdown to win the game and move on to the AFC Championship, ending Buffalo’s season for the second straight year. It was Diggs’ fourth straight season with 1,000+ receiving yards, third straight season in the playoffs, second straight season with 100+ receptions and second straight Pro Bowl selection. He concluded his seventh season in the NFL with 18 games played, 106 receptions, 1,225 receiving yards, and a career-high 10 touchdowns on 170 targets. The Pro Bowl is Feb. 6 in Las Vegas.
- Green Bay Packers safety Darnell Savage Jr. saw his season conclude on Saturday night in a tough way. Savage left the game early with a back injury and only played in 63% of the defensive snaps. He failed to record a stat in the 13-10 loss to San Francisco. This game snapped an 11-game streak of playing every single defensive snap for the Packers. Savage’s third year in the NFL has ended and he finished with 18 total games and starts, 63 total tackles, nine pass deflections, two interceptions, and two tackles for loss.
- Offensive lineman Derwin Gray was on the Tennessee Titans’ practice squad this week. The Titans had their season end on Saturday afternoon. Gray floated around the practice squad until Oct. 12 when he re-signed and stayed there for the remainder of the season. After the Titans were eliminated, Gray signed a reserve/future contract on Monday.
- New England Patriots cornerback J.C. Jackson was named to the Pro Football Writers Association 2021 All-AFC Team on Monday. Jackson was also ranked as a top-20 free agent this offseason by ESPN.