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What We Learned From Week 16 within the N.F.L.


Kansas City 24, Seahawks 10: Geno Smith was in hell all day. Kansas City’s pass rush swarmed him for 4 quarters, generating a ton of interior pressure led by Chris Jones. When paired with the physical, tight-window form of coverage played by Kansas City, it was tough sledding for a Seahawks’ passing offense that has otherwise carried the team. For Kansas City, the ever-reliable Patrick Mahomes-to-Travis Kelce connection did its magic. Kelce snagged six catches for 113 yards, earning just over half of the team’s total receiving yards on the day.

Bills 35, Bears 13: Not many teams throw two interceptions and are available away with a 22-point win anyway. The Bills will not be most teams. Josh Allen was mostly good outside of a number of numbskull plays, the form of performance he could be susceptible to when nothing is admittedly on the road. The Bills’ defense was the actual reason for the team’s success, though. Bears quarterback Justin Fields had just seven carries for 11 yards, the primary time he’s been held to under 50 yards since early October.

Ravens 17, Falcons 9: A surging Ravens’ defense held its own against a troublesome Falcons’ run game. The Falcons slammed their running backs forward 33 times but netted just 115 yards, roughly 3.5 yards per carry. The Ravens ran the ball a lot better, earning 5.4 yards per carry, and were in a position to control the pace of the sport. Atlanta’s rookie quarterback, Desmond Ridder, led the offense into the red zone twice within the fourth quarter, but the primary drive ended on downs and the second led to a field goal that was too little, too late.

Panthers 37, Lions 23: The Lions needed to win this game to have shot on the playoffs, but they didn’t play with any urgency. From the primary play of the sport, the Panthers’ ground attack gashed the Lions up and down the sphere. The Panthers finished with 320 yards rushing, 240 in the primary half alone. The Panthers went into the half with a 24-7 lead, and that was enough of a cushion to stave off the Lions’ comeback attempt.

Vikings 27, Giants 24: The Vikings have once more come out on top in a game decided by one possession, extending their record to 11-0 in those games. This time, kicker Greg Joseph needed to clear his profession long by a number of yards, nailing a 61-yarder because the clock wound all the way down to zeros. Quarterback Kirk Cousins accomplished 71 percent of his passes, leaning heavily on Justin Jefferson and T.J. Hockenson. Giants quarterback Daniel Jones had just his second 300-yard passing game, but one costly second-half interception contained in the Vikings’ 35-yard line was the difference between a win and a loss.

Saints 17, Browns 10: This game was played in 5-degree weather, yet the team used to playing in a dome, the Saints, got here out victorious. Thanks largely to the conditions, it was a giant Taysom Hill game. Hill had nine carries for 56 yards and a rating, and he was on the sphere as a decoy during a handful of other plays. The Browns, traditionally running team, didn’t have much success running the ball, earning fewer than 4 yards per carry and struggling to prop up an abysmal passing game.

Texans 19, Titans 14: It’s impressive that the Titans strung together seven wins with a makeshift roster, but now injuries have fully caught as much as them. With rookie quarterback Malik Willis playing instead of the injured Ryan Tannehill, the Titans’ offense had little to supply outside of Derrick Henry’s 126 yards on 23 carries. Willis threw two interceptions and took 4 sacks, good enough mistakes to offer the Texans possibilities to win. Davis Mills, though not very effective himself, did barely enough with the short fields to get the Texans just their second win of the yr, each of which have are available the division.

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