Titans, Cardinals, Giants clinch divisions
It's on to the NFL playoffs for the Titans, Giants and Cardinals.
Indeed, Arizona clinched the NFC West on Sunday with a 34-10 rout of St. Louis. The Cardinals (8-5) will host a postseason game for the first time since 1947, when they called Chicago home. It's their first division crown since 1975, when they represented St. Louis.
It's been so long, some players weren't even sure how to celebrate.
"My coach was like 'Act like you've been there before, act like you've been there before,'" defensive tackle Darnell Dockett said. "I said 'Coach, I ain't been there before. I don't know how to act right now.'"
The clinchings by Tennessee and New York weren't particularly surprising considering their runaway records. But the Super Bowl champion Giants (11-2) backed into the top spot in the NFC East after a 20-14 loss to Philadelphia. Pittsburgh then did the Giants a nice turn, edging Dallas 20-13 to hand the division to New York.
The Giants' loss meant the Titans have the best record in the league following their 28-9 victory against Cleveland. At 12-1, the Titans have the best mark in franchise history and own the AFC South.
"For the guys that have been here for a few years and that have been through the tough times, to be on a team that is now 12-1 and AFC Division South winners is huge," veteran linebacker Keith Bulluck said.
On the verge of a division championship is Denver, which holds a three-game lead over San Diego in the AFC West. The Broncos (8-5) rallied past Kansas City 24-17 and would clinch the division by winning any of its remaining games: at Carolina, home for Buffalo and at San Diego.
Pittsburgh (10-3) also is closing in on a playoff berth, if not the AFC North. The Steelers' win Sunday left them in control of the division with a showdown at Baltimore next week.
Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press
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