These obviously aren’t all the games from week 12, but they had more significance than the rest (Pats will always matter because I’m from New England):
Keeping with Thanksgiving tradition, we had three games to keep us occupied all day. Well, not really, because the only good game was at 12:30 between the Vikings and Lions. Case Keenum continued to ‘make his case’ as starting QB, going 21-30, throwing for 282 yards and 2 TDs. But the Lions didn’t make it easy, and Stafford probably could have led a late fourth quarter comeback had he not injured his ankle. Vikings won 30-23 and with the loss, the Lions now sit ‘in the hunt’ with a 6-5 record.
*I’m not talking about the other two Thanksgiving games because quite frankly, there’s nothing to talk about.*
Skip ahead to Sunday where the Patriots grabbed their ninth win of the season. It was not pretty, as the Pats had two very uncharacteristic turnovers and the Dolphins defense had no problems getting to Brady (seemed like he was on the ground all day). The game also saw a number of injuries on both sides, with Ebner going down first with a knee injury (looked like an ACL, but I’m no expert). But let’s not forget Dion Lewis’ 15 carries for 112 yards, helping the Pats to a 35-17 win.
NFC heavyweights Saints and Rams squared off too, with the Rams pulling out the 26-20 win. Gurley only got the ball 17x (for 74 yards), which caused Goff to throw it 43 times; but at least he threw for a hefty 354 yards and 2 TDs (and 1 INT that should never have happened). The Saints defense tried, with Cam Jordan having 2 sacks on the day. Unfortunately, Drew Brees had a lot of frustrating drives, and when he tried to get the comeback going late, he just didn’t have it. The Rams defense got it done, though there were a lot of missed opportunities for INTs (I saw at least 3 that could have been). They’re going to need to work on that, considering the competition in the NFC is pretty stiff this year.
Cards just barely beat the Jags 27-24 with a FG as time expired. Blaine Gabbert displayed some pretty impressive skills through the air, while Blake Bortles did it on the ground (Fournette just couldn’t get anything going). Calais Campbell had a fumble recovery for a TD but it wasn’t enough: Bortles’ late INT cost them the game. I’ve said it before: Bortles does great things 85%% of the game, then he makes a costly mistake and we completely forget how amazing he performed beforehand. It seems his decision making while under pressure is no bueno, and it’s something he needs to get a handle on quickly. With the loss, the Jags are now in second place behind the Titans in the AFC South.
Last but not least, the disappointing Chiefs. Everyone thought for sure they would win against the Bills, since McDermott was having an unnecessary dilemma with his QB situation. But no, the Chiefs crapped the bed again and lost 16-10, with a late INT by White to seal the deal for the Bills. Alex Smith and Kareem Hunt have not been the same guys from the first five games, where the Chiefs went 5-0. They have been 1-5 in their last six games. Is it time to give up on them?