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Week 17: Flynn seizes opportunity

STUDS

Flynn

Flynn

Matt Flynn

Quarterback, Green Bay Packers

Quarterback controversy in Green Bay? Of course not, but Flynn was amazing playing in place of Aaron Rodgers, whom the Packers rested in Week 17. Flynn threw for 480 yards and six touchdown passes -- both franchise records -- in Green Bay's wild 45-41 victory over the Lions.


Nelson

Nelson

Jordy Nelson

Wide receiver, Green Bay Packers

One of Rodgers' go-to guys, Nelson developed a quick rapport with Flynn. Nelson caught nine passes for 162 yards and three TDs -- all season highs -- against Detroit.


Stafford

Stafford

Matthew Stafford

Quarterback, Detroit Lions

As great as Flynn was, he was barely able to outshine Stafford, who put up eye-popping numbers of his own Sunday. Stafford completed 36 of 59 passes for 520 yards and five TDs. He connected with Calvin Johnson 11 times for 244 yards.


Manning

Manning

Eli Manning

Quarterback, N.Y. Giants

With the NFC East title on the line, Manning came through with one of his best performances of the season. Manning completed 24 of 33 passes for 346 yards and three TDs without an interception, leading New York to a 31-14 victory over Dallas.


Cruz

Cruz

Victor Cruz

Wide receiver, N.Y. Giants

Cruz once again made his presence felt in a big game. A week after scoring on a 99-yard catch and run against the Jets, Cruz had an early 74-yard TD catch against Dallas. He finished with six receptions for 178 yards.


Brees

Brees

Drew Brees

Quarterback, New Orleans Saints

He probably won't be the MVP, but no quarterback ended the regular season playing better than Brees. The record-setting Saint torched Carolina in a 45-17 victory, throwing for 389 yards and five touchdowns. Brees, who was 28-of-35, finished the season with a record 468 completions, breaking Peyton Manning's 2010 mark of 450. He also finished the season completing 71.6 percent of his passes, breaking his own 2009 NFL record 70.6 completion percentage.


Colston

Colston

Marques Colston

Wide receiver, New Orleans Saints

Colston also starred in the Saints' blowout victory. Colston caught seven passes for a season-high 145 yards and two TDs. His 42-yard scoring grab late in the second quarter gave New Orleans the lead for good.


Rice

Rice

Ray Rice

Running back, Baltimore Ravens

Rice's electric play helped the Ravens secure the No. 2 seed in the AFC. Rice had TD runs of 70 and 51 yards in Baltimore's 24-16 victory over Cincinnati. He finished with 191 yards on 24 carries.


Turner

Turner

Michael Turner

Running back, Atlanta Falcons

Turner ran roughshod over the Buccaneers' struggling defense. Turner rushed for 172 yards and a pair of TDs on 17 carries in Atlanta's 45-24 victory. The Falcons rushed for 251 yards overall.


Allen

Allen

Jared Allen

Defensive end, Minnesota Vikings

The Vikings fell to Chicago 17-13, but Allen finished the season with a flourish. Allen recorded 3½ sacks, upping his season total to 22 and just missing Michael Strahan's single-season record of 22½ sacks.


DUDS

Sanchez

Sanchez

Mark Sanchez

Quarterback, N.Y. Jets

Sanchez finished an up-and-down season with a thud. Sanchez threw three interceptions, the last coming with the Jets threatening to take a late lead, in a 19-17 loss to the Dolphins that eliminated New York from playoff contention. Sanchez was 21-of-32 for 207 yards.


Tebow

Tebow

Tim Tebow

Quarterback, Denver Broncos

Tebow's going to the playoffs, but he's not exactly doing so with a head of steam. Tebow couldn't get anything going in a 7-3 loss to the Chiefs, completing only six of 22 passes for 60 yards. He was intercepted on Denver's final offensive play of the game.


Holmes

Holmes

Santonio Holmes

Wide receiver, N.Y. Jets

Shouting match in the huddle. Mysterious late-game benching. It wasn't a pretty season finale for Holmes, who was targeted only once in the Jets' loss and failed to catch a pass for the first time all season.


Buccaneers

The Buccaneers

For the second straight week, the Bucs showed enough collective ineptitute to earn a spot on this list. Tampa Bay once again was woeful in nearly every facet -- until garbage time. The Bucs fell behind 42-0, committed four turnovers and allowed 251 yards rushing.