Week 12 of the NFL season is in the books, and week 13 begins December football. The final playoff push is about to commence and there’s much to still be decided. Week 13 is set up to be one of the best weekends of NFL football so far this season, but before we preview week 13 let’s recap what happened in week 12.
Mike White Elevates the Jets Offense:
It has been stated many times how bad Zach Wilson has played this season. The Jets have a legit chance to make the playoffs for the first time in many seasons and can’t afford the quarterback position holding them back. After Wilson took zero accountability for his poor play, the Jets benched him for Mike White and the results spoke for themselves. White led the Jets’ offense to the most yards they gained all season – 466 yards of total offense. Garret Wilson and Elijah Moore were able to make plays and the body language of the team felt different with White under center. Mike White doesn’t have to be great, but if he plays better than Wilson the Jets have a chance to make the playoffs.
The Bengals are Coming:
The Cincinnati Bengals have won 5 out of 6 after a tough start to the season and are now a team that looks like they did when they got hot and made a run all the way to the Super Bowl. The Bengals toughed one out against the Titans with a 20-16 win. Joe Burrow did enough to lead Cincinnati to a win despite not having wide receivers Ja’Marr Chase and Joe Mixon. The good news for the Bengals is Chase is expected to return when the Bengals face the Chiefs this coming week. The Bengals are now tied with the Ravens for first place in the AFC North and the Ravens have to travel to Cincinnati for the rematch.
Ravens Collapse Late…Again:
When the Baltimore Ravens lose, they collapse in the worst way and Sunday’s loss to the Jaguars was no different. The Ravens were up 27-20 and let Trevor Lawrence lead the Jaguars down the field for a touchdown. Lawrence was also successful on the two-point conversion. Trevor Lawrence had one of his best performances to date and he is looking the like the guy the Jaguars wanted him to be when they took him number one in last year’s draft. Lamar Jackson had an inconsistent day, completing 16 of 32 passes. Despite that, Jackson had the Ravens in position to win, but the defense couldn’t hold on. The Ravens have to learn how to finish games, or they could lose the AFC North.
Bucs Fall in Cleveland:
Tampa Bay looked to have turned things around after beating the Rams, then beating the Seahawks in Germany. But the Bucs’ mid-season push hit a bump in the road in Cleveland, as fell 23-17 in overtime to the Browns. The Browns ran for 189 yards on 5.6 yards a carry. Another issue for Tampa is that offensive lineman Tristan Wirfs left the game with an injury. The Bucs’ offensive line already had issues, but losing Wirfs would be a devastating blow.
Week 13 Games to Watch:
8-3 Bills (-5) vs 6-5 Patriots: The Bills are trying to keep up with the Dolphins and still have a shot at the AFC’s top seed. The Patriots are trying to keep up in the wild card race.
7-4 Jets vs 9-2 Vikings (-3): The Mike White experience got off to a good start, but he will face much tougher competition this week on the road at Minnesota.
7-5 Commanders (-1.5) vs 7-4 Giants: Both teams would make the playoffs if the season ended today but a win would certainly help both teams. Washington has won 6 out of 7 while the Giants are reeling, having lost two straight.
7-4 Titans vs 10-1 Eagles (-5.5): This will be one of the tougher tests the Eagles will face down the stretch and the Eagles have found ways to win the last two weeks despite not playing their best ball. The Titans off a loss to the Bengals will look to make a statement.
8-3 Dolphins vs 7-4 49ers (-3.5): The Dolphins explosive offense will face a tough 49ers defense, but this game could come down to how the 49ers offense performs vs a Dolphins defense that’s middle of the road in total yards and points per game.
9-2 Chiefs (-2.5) vs 7-4 Bengals: A rematch of the AFC Championship game and with Ja’Marr Chase returning this one could have some fireworks. A win here would be huge for Kansas City as it tries to remain the top seed in the AFC.