The longest week in NFL history is in the books! At the end of every NFL week, I like to sit down, check my fantasy players, make sure my rosters are set for the upcoming week, make my picks and predictions and check the betting lines. After all of that, I sit back and think about what just happened the previous week, and what stands out to me, in my last thoughts of the week, or my Fourth and Goal, so let’s check it out!
The Pittsburgh Steelers are still undefeated at 11-0, even though it was a lot harder than anyone could’ve predicted. The Baltimore Ravens’ backups and the backups of the backups gave the Steelers everything they could handle, but at the end of the day, the Steelers walked away with a victory, however, it came at a cost to their defense as LB Bud Dupree suffered a torn ACL, and is out for the rest of the Season. That is a huge blow to the Steelers’ defense. Wishing Bud Dupree a speedy recovery, as the Steelers prepare for the Washington Football Team, which is coming off a win over the spirling Dallas Cowboys on Thanksgiving Day, on a short turn around. The Ravens however are kind of on the ropes at the moment but are looking to get a majority of their starters back and start their turn around against the Cowboys on Tuesday night.
The Kansas City Chiefs stay just a step behind Pittsburgh at 10-1, by defeating a very adapting Tampa Bay Buccaneers. The way that game started everyone believed it was going to be a huge blowout for the Chiefs, but a resilient Bucs defense dampened the long plays and made life a little tougher on the Chiefs. Tom Brady began picking apart the Chiefs’ defense, with more of a “Tom Brady offense”, the second and third reads really started paying off the Bucs, and they were able to tighten the score. However, with just a couple of minutes on the clock and the ball in Patrick Mahomes’ hands, the Chiefs were able to secure the victory 27-24 and lengthen their lead in AFC West, especially after the Las Vegas Raiders who seemingly didn’t show up in a loss to the resurging Atlanta Falcons.
The Falcons are showing signs of turning a corner with Interim Head Coach Raheem Morris, however, they do have the white-hot New Orleans Saints coming to town, so we shall see. It should be a fun game. The Raiders should get things righted as they visit the winless New York Jets 0-11, who seem to be going through the motions and are eyeing the first pick in the 2021 NFL Draft.
Deshaun Watson had a great Thanksgiving Day game as the Houston Texans try to keep up in the AFC; Watson’s big game came at the expense of the ever frustrating Detroit Lions. If the Texans wish to continue the winning ways, they will have a tough test in the visiting Indianapolis Colts, who found out the hard way what a punishing runner King Derrick Henry can be, as the visiting Tennesse Titans surged ahead and stay at the third spot in the AFC, and prepare for the Cleveland Browns, who outlasted the Jacksonville Jaguars and are eyeing moving up in the AFC Standings.
After another Detroit loss, in a game they should’ve had a chance to win, on paper, the Lions parted ways with their Head Coach and General Manager, and are looking for new perspectives from Interim Head Coach Darrell Bevell moving forward. Now, they’ll be heading to Chicago to take on the Bears for their Week 13 matchup. Chicago shouldn’t count on a victory, because as we have seen a new perspective is sometimes just what a team needs. In the case of the Falcons and the Bears, they look to get things right from the beat down they took from the Green Bay Packers; however, I truly feel it may be too little too late for ChiTown.
The NFC East is still a roaring dumpster fire of a division that at this moment is being led by the New York Giants who are 4-7, with the Washington Football Team right behind the G-men with the same record, the Philadelphia Eagles who are 3-7, and Dallas Cowboys who are 3-8 round out the division. Someone is going to have to win this division; I have a feeling things are turning around for the Giants, and they may just take the division; plus, with all four teams have daunting challenges this week, unless a major upset happens, I don’t see the seeds changing in Week 13.
I am not picking an NFC East divisional winner. I will just wait and see who emerges on top.
My final thoughts on Week 12 are the NFC with the #1 seed Saints continue to win even without their starting QB Drew Brees. Back-up QB Taysom Hill seems to be getting very comfortable in the starting QB role. The Packers and the Seattle Seahawks seem to be coming around to make a final push into the playoffs with the Los Angeles Rams and the Arizona Cardinals playing on Sunday afternoon. Both teams are having some trouble figuring out just who they are, and with the Minnesota Vikings 5-6 and San Francisco 49ers coming off big wins for each team, the final playoff push should be very exciting!