Week 12 in the NFL has come and gone, and the results this week were much more tame than recent weeks. There were not as many upsets or assaults with a weapon as recent weeks, but it was a thrilling week of football nonetheless. This week, some teams played themselves into playoff conversation, some teams played themselves out of the conversation, and the two top teams in the league continued to roll as they get set to face off. Here’s how all 32 teams stack up this week.
32. Cincinnati Bengals (0-11) Prev: 32
Another week, another loss for the Cincinnati Bengals, the team who is most likely to finish with the league’s worst record. The Ryan Finley experiment did not wind up working out for the Bengals, so in an attempt to save themselves from total embarrassment, they will start Andy Dalton once again next week. The Bengals are a team full of needs, so it is hard to say who they will target in the draft, be it the best available player or the top quarterback in the draft.
31. Washington Redskins (2-9) Prev: 31
The Redskins scored a rare victory over the Detroit Lions on Sunday. Dwayne Haskins decided to commemorate his first career victory with a selfie with fans, rather than take the final kneel down of the game. If the Redskins really wanted him to learn, they would give Haskins some repercussions, be it on the field or off the field. Despite the victory, do not expect too many more this year for the Redskins.
30. Miami Dolphins (2-9) Prev: 29
The Miami Dolphins took a loss to the Cleveland Browns on Sunday, a loss which confirmed that they will finish the year under .500. Despite a few good wins this season, Miami’s focus is not on this season, but rather the future. There are a few good pieces on this Dolphins team, like wide receiver Davante Parker, but they seem to be missing a quarterback. Expect that position to be Miami’s focus with their likely top five pick in the draft.
29. New York Giants (2-9) Prev: 28
The New York Giants took a loss to the Bears on Sunday. The offense struggled to get anything going against a Chicago defense that is still good. Daniel Jones did not throw an interception though, which is promising to the Giants. Their duo of Jones and Saquon Barkley will look to get the Giants back in the win column next week against a Packers team that just got steamrolled by the 49ers.
28. Denver Broncos (3-8) Prev: 27
The Denver Broncos took a loss to the Buffalo Bills on Sunday, and their offense could not find a way to get on the board against Buffalo’s stingy defense. Brandon Allen struggled all game, and did not reach 100 yards passing as a result. The two running backs, Lindsay and Freeman were able to find some success, but they did not get the ball enough to become a factor. The Broncos are back at it next week against the Chargers.
27. Atlanta Falcons (3-8) Prev: 25
The Atlanta Falcons were cooled down by the Buccaneers on Sunday. The offense found a way to put up points, but the defense fell victim to Tampa Bay’s hot or cold offense, as the Bucs exploded for 35 points. The Falcons are not expected to be a major player come the playoffs, and are a likely candidate for a top ten pick.
26. Detroit Lions (3-7-1) Prev: 23
The Lions took a bad loss to the Redskins on Sunday. The Lions are missing their quarterback, Matt Stafford in a big way. Stafford has very rarely missed games in his career, so for him to have missed so many games in a row this season should be at least slightly concerning for Lions fans. The Lions will host the Chicago Bears next week, in a battle of struggling offenses.
25. Arizona Cardinals (3-7-1) Prev: 22
The Cardinals had a bye week in week 12. Kyler Murray continues to play very well in his rookie season, but running back David Johnson has struggled. Kenyan Drake has filled in nicely, but Johnson’s struggles should be a point of concern and Arizona will hope he can get back to elite play next year.
24. New York Jets (4-7) Prev: 30
The New York Jets have found their calling; ruining the playoff picture. The Jets dominated a Raiders team that was looking to cement themselves in the playoff picture, and beat the Cowboys earlier this season. The Jets will go as far as Sam Darnold can take them, and now that he may be done seeing ghosts, the Jets could win a few more games down the line.
23. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (4-7) Prev: 26
Tampa Bay were winners on Sunday, and exploded for 35 points against the Falcons. While Jameis Winston threw for over 300 yards and three touchdowns, he also threw two interceptions. This brings his total to 20 interceptions on the season, and he leads the league. It is unclear if Winston will stay in Tampa Bay next year or not.
22. Jacksonville Jaguars (4-7) Prev: 19
The Jags took a loss to the Titans on Sunday. The team seems to be struggling ever since Nick Foles took his job back. The once elite defense has struggled for a decent part of the season, and they did again against the Titans, giving up 42 points to the Tannehill-lead Titans offense. Jacksonville looks to end the drought next week against the Buccaneers.
21. Los Angeles Chargers (4-7) Prev: 20
The Chargers were on a bye this week. With how the AFC Wild Card currently stands, the Chargers are currently down, but not out. They will likely have to win out and get some help, but it is not impossible for them to make it. The Chargers have the talent to win these games, and will look to get on a roll in Denver next week.
20. Chicago Bears (5-6) Prev: 21
The Bears were winners over the Giants on Sunday. The Bears refusal to run the ball, even though Mitch Trubisky is not a quarterback a team would want throwing 40 or more times. The stats were impressive on paper, but there were two interceptions to go with those 278 yards. The Bears do not have a first round draft pick this year, so any solution to their offensive struggles will have to be from a mid to late draft pick, or a trade.
19. Cleveland Browns (5-6) Prev: 24
Despite their early season struggles, the Cleveland Browns may still be in the playoff race yet. A few wins mixed in with an easy second half may just barely be enough for the Browns to squeeze themselves in. A win over Pittsburgh on Sunday would go a long way for Cleveland, but with Mason Rudolph no longer starting, that may be easier said than done.
18. Tennessee Titans (6-5) Prev: 18
Ryan Tannehill continues to lead the Titans to victories. All the same, Derrick Henry continues to own the Jacksonville Jaguars. A 99-yard touchdown last year, and 159 yards this year. Tennessee is a sneaky wild card contender this year, with a ground and pound offense and an underrated defense. The Titans will look to continue their winning ways next week against the Colts, who are another team in their way of a Wild Card spot.
17. Carolina Panthers (5-6) Prev: 16
The Panthers were in a shootout with the Saints on Sunday, and were a chip shot field goal away from a potential victory. Unfortunately for Carolina, Joey Slye missed it. He had been solid for the Panthers all season, and just pushed it wide. Panthers fans may be able to feel a little better about Kyle Allen after this game, but the Panthers have now fallen under .500 in an NFC that is very top-heavy.
16. Philadelphia Eagles (5-6) Prev: 15
The Eagles faced a tough Seahawks team on Sunday, and came out of the matchup with a loss. Carson Wentz struggled, and turned the ball over a lot. Dallas not being able to beat good teams has kept them in the hunt for the division, but the biggest problem for the Eagles has been health. They’ve suffered a lot of injuries this season, but if they can get healthy at the right time, they may be able to steal the division.
15. Oakland Raiders (6-5) Prev: 14
The Raiders took a very ugly loss to the Jets on Sunday. Oakland was in a great position to gain some ground on the sixth seed in the AFC, but instead fell back with the rest of the pile. Derek Carr found himself on the bench at one point on Sunday, but there is likely not much to that. The Raiders will have a tough matchup to try to make up ground on Sunday, as they face the Chiefs.
14. Los Angeles Rams (6-5) Prev: 13
The Rams were crushed by the Ravens on Sunday. The Patriots may have broke Jared Goff, as he has struggled ever since Super Bowl 53. The Rams have way too much talent for missing the playoffs to be excused, but it looks like that will be the case. The Rams will be back at it on Sunday against the Cardinals in Arizona.
13. Pittsburgh Steelers (6-5) Prev: 17
The Steelers made a quarterback change during the game on Sunday. They benched assault victim Mason Rudolph in favor of Devlin Hodges. Hodges threw a long touchdown to James Washington almost immediately after entering the game, and his play saved the Steelers from an embarrassing loss to the Bengals. The Steelers will look to continue their winning ways against the Browns.
12. Indianapolis Colts (6-5) Prev: 11
The Colts took a big Thursday night loss to the Texans on Sunday. T.Y. Hilton had some key drops in the game, and he took a big part of the blame for the loss. The Colts are still a very good team on paper, and are still in the running for the AFC South and the wild card. They will look to rebound against the Titans at home next week.
11. Dallas Cowboys (6-5) Prev: 9
The Dallas Cowboys are proving themselves to be extremely mediocre. They cannot seem to beat any team that is over .500. If this trend continues, Dallas will end up one-and-done even if they make the playoffs. This team is a Super Bowl contender on paper, but their coaching is bringing them down. Dallas plays Buffalo on Thanksgiving, a game they will need to win to boost their confidence.
10. Houston Texans (7-4) Prev: 12
The Texans seized control of the AFC South on Sunday. They were able to get a big Thursday night victory over the Colts, a team that gave them fits all of last season. The Texans will need to ride their momentum into next week, as they host the New England Patriots on Sunday night, another team that has had their number over recent seasons.
9. Buffalo Bills (8-3) Prev: 10
The Bills picked up their eighth victory of the season on Sunday over the Broncos. Thanks to some help from their division rivals, the New York Jets, the Bills now have a two game lead over everyone else for the fifth seed in the AFC. Josh Allen’s elevated play, along with a thriving defense will go to Dallas for a Thanksgiving showdown with the Cowboys.
8. Kansas City Chiefs (7-4) Prev: 8
The Chiefs were off on Sunday, ad they got some help from the Jets. Thanks to New York, the Chiefs still have total control of the AFC West, and will have a chance to push Oakland further back themselves on Sunday. Kansas City has dominated Oakland with Mahomes at quarterback, and will need to continue that.
7. Green Bay Packers (8-3) Prev: 6
The Packers got crushed a 49ers freight train on Sunday night. There was no part of the game where the Packers were impressive, as San Francisco took away everything on offense. The Packers will get a chance to rebound on Sunday against the New York Giants. The NFC North could come down to a week 16 showdown between Green Bay and Minnesota.
6. Minnesota Vikings (8-3) Prev: 7
The Vikings got a bye on Sunday, and got some help from the 49ers in the division. Minnesota will need their team to continue their momentum from previous weeks into next week, as they face the Seahawks, the team currently above them in the Wild Card race.
5. Seattle Seahawks (9-2) Prev: 5
The Seahawks’ defense swarmed the Eagles offense on Sunday. Not having Jadeveon Clowney was not a problem for Seattle, as they forced a lot of turnovers. Seattle remains one game back of the 49ers for the NFC West lead, and they are currently the fifth seed in the NFC. They host the Vikings next week.
4. New Orleans Saints (9-2) Prev: 4
The Saints found themselves in an NFC South shootout on Sunday against the Panthers, and were a Joey Slye miss away from potentially losing. Instead, they were able to drive down the field and let Will Lutz kick the game-winner. New Orleans has a commanding lead on the NFC South, and look to clinch a postseason birth this week against the Falcons on Thanksgiving.
3. New England Patriots (10-1) Prev: 1
The Patriots are number three this week, but by no fault of their own. Their defense continues to play at elite levels, and the offense looked a lot better in sloppy conditions. They were able to run the ball for the first time in a long time, and and Tom Brady would have had a pretty good game if it weren’t for a few drops from his receivers. The Pats will visit the Texans on Sunday night.
2. Baltimore Ravens (9-2) Prev: 3
The Ravens are a force of nature that cannot be stopped right now. They dominated a Rams team that is full of elite players like Aaron Donald, Jalen Ramsey and Todd Gurley. Lamar Jackson is pulling away with MVP, and the defense has been great since the addition of Marcus Peters.
1. San Francisco 49ers (10-1) Prev: 2
The 49ers crushed the Packers on Sunday night to claim the top spot this week. Jimmy Garoppolo threw for over 250 yards despite only throwing 20 times. The defense gave Aaron Rodgers nothing. And now they are set to collide with the Baltimore Ravens on Sunday, a game that could happen again in February.