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Week 17 afternoon games: Live updates, odds, and Patriots rooting guide

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Buffalo Bills v New England Patriots Photo by Maddie Meyer/Getty Images

There is no Sunday Night Football, so this represents the final regular season slate of games for 2017. Where’d the season go? Here’s the New England Patriots rooting guide for the week 17 afternoon games.

4:25 PM ET Patriots rooting guide

Jaguars at Titans (-3): The Patriots want the Titans to win because they’re arguably the weakest of the wild card teams. If they win, they’re in the playoffs.

Bills (-3) at Dolphins: Is it mean for New England to want the Bills to lose to make sure they don’t reach the postseason? From a strategy standpoint, it’s difficult to beat a team three times in one season. So go Dolphins, ruin your draft status with a win...right? Now, hold on...

Bengals at Ravens (-9): Either one of the Bills or the Ravens will make the playoffs. The only way the Ravens miss the playoffs is if the Titans and Bills win, while the Ravens lose. I’d rather see the Ravens out of the playoffs more than the Bills, right? So, go Cincinnati, and go Buffalo.

Raiders at Chargers (-7.5): I don’t want to see the Los Angeles defense in the postseason, so a loss would eliminate them. Go Oakland.

Panthers at Falcons (-4): The Patriots would rather the Falcons lose and miss the postseason because the alternative wild card team is much weaker, so go Carolina.

Saints (-7) at Buccaneers: The Saints are probably one of the teams best suited to beat the Patriots, so New England should root for a Tampa Bay upset to force the Saints on a tougher playoff path.

Cardinals at Seahawks (-9): If the Seahawks win and the Falcons lose, then Seattle will be the final wild card team in the NFC and they’re a much easier team to defeat. So go Seattle.

49ers (-4) at Rams: A San Francisco win hurts the Patriots second round draft pick as compensation from the Jimmy Garoppolo trade, but I’m totally okay with that. Go Jimmy, go!

Chiefs at Broncos (-4): This game doesn’t matter.

Use this as the open thread for discussion.