Week 13 is in the books and with just four weeks left of the regular season, the race for the playoffs is hotting up. Let’s take a look at the storylines from the most recent game week.
The NFC East Produces The Two Shock Results
The Washington Football Team and the New York Giants produced two shock results this weekend. Washington became the first team this season to beat the Pittsburgh Steelers, with a 23-17 win.
Meanwhile, the Giants beat the Seattle Seahawks 17-12, getting 5 sacks on Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson.
With the Philadelphia Eagles and Dallas Cowboys both losing, Washington and New York both have five wins and stand two wins clear of both Philadelphia and Dallas.
With just four games left, it appears to be a race between the Giants and Washington for that playoff spot. This is not something anyone expected before the season began. Head coaches Joe Judge and Ron Rivera have brought leadership and organisation to these franchises, which has been lacking in Dallas and Philly.
Washington quarterback Alex Smith is a shoo-in for Comeback Player of the Year and his head coach Rivera is surely a contender for Coach of the Year.
Offensive Player Of The Week: Baker Mayfield (Quarterback- Cleveland Browns)
Baker Mayfield had his best career game to date in the Browns’ 41-35 win against the Tennessee Titans. This is the biggest statement win from Cleveland so far this season as they move to 9-3.
Baker Mayfield certainly showed that the Browns can be about more than just the run game. He recorded a 75.8% completion percentage (25 from 33), 334 passing yards and four touchdowns.
The Titans and Browns both shared an 8-3 record before this game but there was nothing equal about this game. The Browns were completely dominant and were winning 38-7 at half time.
Is it time to believe in Cleveland?
Defensive Player Of The Week: Tyrann Mathieu (Safety- Kansas City Chiefs)
The Chiefs secured their place in the postseason with a 22-16 win over their AFC West rivals, the Denver Broncos. The game was sealed when Mathieu intercepted a Drew Lock fourth-down pass with less than two minutes left and no timeouts.
Mathieu had two interceptions in the game, two passes deflected and seven tackles.
Elsewhere In The League
The Las Vegas Raiders kept themselves well and truly in the playoff hunt after a last gasp win over the winless New York Jets, who now sit on 0-12. The Raiders are 7-5, just one win behind the sixth seed Miami Dolphins.
The Jets thought they were going to win the game after running back Ty Johnson scored a touchdown with just over five minutes remaining.
However, the Raiders went for one last play and quarterback Derek Carr threw to Henry Ruggs for a 46-yard pass. The Jets strangely went for a blitz play, allowing Ruggs to catch the pass and win the game for the Raiders. This was a play call that cost Jets defensive coordinator Gregg Williams his job.
The Saints also secured their playoff berth and the Minnesota Vikings kept their postseason hopes alive with an overtime 27-24 win over the Jacksonville Jaguars, who now sit 1-11.
NFL Week 13 Scores
New Orleans Saints 21-16 Atlanta Falcons
Detroit Lions 34-30 Chicago Bears
Indianapolis Colts 26-20 Houston Texans
Cincinnati Bengals 7-19 Miami Dolphins
Jacksonville Jaguars 24-27 Minnesota Vikings
Las Vegas Raiders 31-28 New York Jets
Cleveland Browns 41-35 Tennessee Titans
Los Angeles Rams 38-28 Arizona Cardinals
New York Giants 17-12 Seattle Seahawks
Philadelphia Eagles 16–30 Green Bay Packers
New England Patriots 45-0 Los Angeles Chargers
Denver Broncos 16-22 Kansas City Chiefs
Washington Football Team 23-17 Pittsburgh Steelers
Buffalo Bills 34-24 San Francisco 49ers
Dallas Cowboys 17-34 Baltimore Ravens