The NFL’s Week 12 Sunday slate featured monster performances: The Raiders’ Josh Jacobs and the Eagles’ Jalen Hurts each had 300-yard days and we saw last-second heroics from quarterbacks Trevor Lawrence and Justin Herbert, Browns teammates David Njoku and Nick Chubb, and way more.
Sunday marked the primary time in NFL history because the two-point conversion was implemented in 1994 that multiple games were decided by two-point conversions scored in the ultimate two minutes of play. And the Jaguars and Chargers became only the third and fourth teams since 1994 to attain game-winning two-point conversions in the ultimate 15 seconds of the fourth quarter. They joined the 2018 Chargers (4 seconds left in Week 15) and 2002 Vikings (five seconds remaining in Week 15) in accomplishing the feat.
Meanwhile, the playoff picture continued to take shape. Some teams strengthened commanding leads of their divisions and conference races while others continued to attempt to force their way into the image. Hope has began to fade for others.
Here’s a game-by-game, team-by-team take a look at a few of the biggest lessons from the Week 12 motion.
NFL playoff picture after Week 12: Will every NFC East team make it?
Philadelphia: A well-deserved game ball for center Jason Kelce, leader of an Eagles offensive line that paved the best way for 363 rushing yards — essentially the most in franchise history in 73 years. Meanwhile, Hurts delivered one other MVP-worthy performance, rushing for a season-high 157 yards and passing for 2 touchdowns and one other 153 yards because the Eagles scored their season high in points and improved to a league-best 10-1. The MVP race is shaping as much as be a showdown between Hurts, Patrick Mahomes, Tua Tagovailoa and Josh Allen. Considering the dramatic growth Hurts has displayed this season, and his team’s current position because the No. 1 seed throughout the playoffs, you’ll be able to make the argument that he deserves the nod.
— NFL (@NFL) November 28, 2022
Green Bay: Aaron Rodgers (already nursing a broken thumb) couldn’t finish the sport due to a rib injury, and now Matt LaFleur may need a choice to make. At 4-8 and with Rodgers ailing, is it time to show to Jordan Love? A 3rd-year pro, Love is considered the longer term, but largely stays an unknown commodity. He did look sharp in relief of Rodgers Sunday.
Los Angeles: Brandon Staley doesn’t do time beyond regulation. Having blown fourth-quarter leads in each of the 2 previous weeks, the coach went for the win, and Justin Herbert delivered, drilling an open Gerald Everett for the deciding two-point conversion with 15 seconds left. Nice method to rebound after a heartbreaking loss to the Chiefs in Week 11.
Arizona: Kliff Kingsbury and Kyler Murray, alternatively, don’t do clutch. After taking a 24-17 lead with 13:31 left, Kingsbury’s offense gained only 16 yards on its final three possessions. The Cardinals lost their fourth game within the last five outings and dropped to 4-8.
Cleveland: Jacoby Brissett has done an admirable job filling in for the soon-to-be reinstated Deshaun Watson. Sunday, Brissett went out as interim starter with a bang, directing a game-winning drive, and outduking his former Patriots teammate Tom Brady in time beyond regulation. During this 11-game stretch, Brissett has posted a career-best completion percentage (64.3) and passer rating (90.7) while recording 12 touchdown passes and 6 interceptions. Within the eyes of the Browns, Brissett has done the whole lot asked of him. Now, at 4-7 with six games left, they’ll see if Watson can lead them on a late playoff push.
The Browns scored with 32 seconds left to tie their game with the Buccaneers, then won it in OT. That was the primary game of Tom Brady’s profession by which his team held a seven-plus point lead in the ultimate minute of the fourth quarter and ended up losing the sport. (Per @EliasSports)
— NFL Research (@NFLResearch) November 27, 2022
Tampa Bay: With the loss, the Buccaneers dropped below .500. The excellent news for them: Although 5-6, they still lead the NFC South, whose other three teams also own losing records. Essentially the most concerning development of the sport is the prognosis of top offensive lineman Tristan Wirfs, who was carted off in time beyond regulation with a left leg injury.
Bengals 20, Titans 16
Cincinnati: No Ja’Marr Chase? No Joe Mixon? No problem. For a second straight week, the Bengals showed off their offensive depth, they usually capitalized on a formidable performance by a defense that bottled up Derrick Henry for just 38 rushing yards and a 2.2-yard average (his second-lowest of the season in each categories).
Tennessee: Henry did post a team-high 79 receiving yards on three catches, and Ryan Tannehill did spread the ball around to seven different pass-catchers. But nine times out of 10, the Titans, as currently constructed, will come up short against elite teams after they can’t run the ball.
Miami: To no surprise, the Texans were no match for the Dolphins. But offensive line depth might be a problem for Miami going forward. From the time left tackle Terron Armstead left with a pectoral injury with 1:06 left within the second quarter until 3:18 remained within the third quarter, Tagovailoa was sacked 4 times. Mike McDaniel then properly pulled his quarterback while up 30-0 somewhat than subject him to further risk of injury. But to make matters worse, right tackle Austin Jackson also left the sport early with an ankle injury. The Dolphins improved to 8-3 but wait anxiously on the status of their bookends.
Houston: Davis Mills … Kyle Allen … Does it really matter?
Jaguars 28, Ravens 27
Jacksonville: The Jaguars desperately need Trevor Lawrence (somewhat pedestrian through the primary 27 games of his profession) to start out delivering some game-changing plays. Sunday, the top pick of the 2021 draft delivered essentially the most clutch performance of his profession, capping a 321-yard, three-TD day by directing a 10-play, 75-yard game-winning drive that culminated with a touchdown pass and successful two-point conversion.
— NFL (@NFL) November 27, 2022
Baltimore: Justin Tucker just narrowly missed a possible NFL-record 67-yard field goal as time expired. However it should never have come right down to that — not if the Ravens view themselves as contenders. Contenders don’t struggle within the red zone (2-for-5) and collapse late on defense as Baltimore did.
Latest York: With a finger on the heart beat of the locker room, Robert Saleh benched supposed franchise quarterback Zach Wilson after his horrendous performance against the Patriots. Alternative Mike White rewarded Saleh by leading the Jets (7-4) to victory while accomplishing a pair things Wilson has yet to do in his young profession: White recorded a three-touchdown, zero-turnover game with a passer rating of 149.3.
Chicago: The Bears could also be on a five-game losing streak, but Justin Fields’ price is obvious even when he’s out with injury. An offense that averaged 29.6 points a game on the back of their young quarterback mustered only 10 points with Trevor Siemian filling in.
Washington: A goal-line stand that climaxed with a Kendall Fuller interception with 1:03 left gave the Fighting Heinickies their third straight victory, and sixth of their last seven. Meaning every NFC East team has at the very least seven victories, and that Washington — which opened the 12 months 1-4 — has a likelihood to overtake the Giants next week. But essentially the most remarkable story of the 12 months continues to be rookie running back Brian Robinson Jr. Just three months after would-be carjackers shot him within the knee twice, the Alabama product recorded the primary 100-yard rushing performance of his young profession and likewise scored on a receiving touchdown.
Hell of an effort by @BrianR_4 👏👏👏
— Washington Commanders (@Commanders) November 27, 2022
Atlanta: The Falcons got here up short on this throwback game after getting outrushed 176-167. An inability to get off the sector within the second half (Washington held the ball for 20 of the half-hour) and to capitalize within the red zone proved fatal for Arthur Smith, whose defense ranks third-worst within the league on third downs.
Carolina: Sam Darnold got his activate the Panthers’ quarterback carousel and turned in a reasonably solid performance (11-for-19, 164 yards, rushing touchdown, passing touchdown, no turnovers). That was despite playing in his first regular-season game because the 2021 finale and getting outplayed by Baker Mayfield within the preseason. With five games left, Darnold will look to salvage his profession by either solidifying his position with Carolina for next season, or by auditioning for other teams next 12 months.
Denver: Russell Wilson (19-for-35 for a measly 142 yards and a fumble) couldn’t even have a good time his three hundredth profession touchdown pass because he got outplayed by Darnold and saw his Broncos lose their third straight game and seventh of their last eight. Falling to an interim head coach in Steve Wilks was also a foul search for Nathaniel Hackett, who continues to sorely disappoint.
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Las Vegas: Josh Jacobs, grown man: 229 yards, two touchdowns — including the 86-yard game-winner in time beyond regulation — on 39 carries and 6 catches for 74 yards. Jacobs became only the sixth player in NFL history to record at the very least 300 scrimmage yards and multiple scrimmage touchdowns in a single game. And so far as the Raiders go: After starting the season 2-7, Josh McDaniels’ team has won two in a row in time beyond regulation by sticking with a recipe of balance (295 yards passing, 283 rushing against Seattle).
Seattle: You’ve to win within the trenches, and you’ve got to get off the sector on third downs. The Seahawks defense did neither, and this one will sting some time. Losers of two straight, Seattle dropped to 6-5 while divisional foe San Francisco improved to 7-4.
San Francisco: The 49ers seemed a bit off offensively, but their defense was on point, recording two takeaways, denying the Saints on seven of 11 third downs and recording their first shutout since 2019. Winners of 4 straight, the 49ers now lead the NFC West.
Latest Orleans: The Saints had their possibilities, but two Alvin Kamara fumbles (including one on the goal line), an 0-2 showing within the red zone and a missed field goal will haunt them. Shut out for the primary time since 2001, Latest Orleans fell to 4-8. The Saints aren’t out of it because NFC South leader Tampa Bay is 5-7. But prospects for a turnaround appear somewhat bleak.
Chiefs 26, Rams 10
Kansas City: A lot for the potential Super Bowl preview the schedule makers envisioned within the spring. Mahomes vs. Bryce Perkins isn’t a good fight. The Chiefs took care of business, won their fifth straight and improved to 9-2.
Los Angeles: Hats off to Raheem Morris’ defense for denying Mahomes on 4 of 5 trips contained in the red zone. However the battered Rams don’t have enough offensively to go toe-to-toe with the Chiefs.
(Photo: Scott Taetsch / Getty Images)