Strasser: Week 12 NFL Recap

Giants players Wayne Gallman and Elijhaa Penny during a game last season. Gallman had a touchdown in the team's win over the Bengals this week. Photo / flickr user All-Pro-Reels

Another week, another new installment of drama in the disaster that is the NFC East.

After the Washington Football Team thrashed the Dallas Cowboys on Thanksgiving, they had sole possession of first place in the division until Sunday afternoon.

On Sunday afternoon, the New York Giants had an opportunity to take that spot back. A week earlier, Offensive ROY candidate and Cincinnati Bengals quarterback (QB) Joe Burrow suffered a season ending injury, so the Bengals headed into their matchup against the Giants with Brandon Allen at quarterback.

In the first quarter, running back (RB) Wayne Gallman found the end zone for the Giants to help them jump out to a 7-0 lead. On the ensuing kickoff, Bengals safety (S) Brandon Wilson took it back 103 yards to the house to tie the game at 7.

The teams traded field goals in the second, and headed into halftime tied at 10. The Giants controlled the ball for much of the second half and kicked three field goals, unanswered, to take the lead 19-10 with only four minutes remaining. The Bengals managed to drive down the field, and scored thanks to wide receiver (WR) Tee Higgins’ touchdown reception.

After that, the Bengals were not able to get the ball back and ended up dropping this one to the Giants 19-17.

Giants QB Daniel Jones injured his hamstring in this game, and he did not return. Even with QB Colt McCoy playing for much of the second half, the Giants were able to hold on and improve to 4-7.

At 4-7 with two head-to-head wins against Washington, New York took back sole possession of the lead in the NFC East with this win. The Philadelphia Eagles lost to the Seattle Seahawks on Monday Night Football which kept them at three wins and third in the division.

Jones has a chance to play in Week 13, and the Giants will definitely need him if they have any chance at holding their lead and winning the division. 

The next notable game this weekend was the NFC West divisional matchup between the Los Angles Rams and San Fran 49ers.

Most people expected the Rams to win this game handily, but the 49ers got RB Raheem Mostert back for this game. After the Rams opened the game up with a field goal, the 49ers quickly responded with a Mostert touchdown that put them up 7-3. The score would remain the same until halftime.

On the Rams’ first possession of the second half, QB Jared Goff threw an interception that was returned 27 yards to the house, to put the 49ers up 14-3.

After a few field goals, the Rams were able to return a fumble for a touchdown to cut the 49ers’ lead to 17-13. Then in the fourth quarter, RB Cam Akers found his way into the end zone and gave the Rams the lead.

It wasn’t enough though, because the 49ers were able to convert on two field goals, one being an attempt as time expired. Kicker (K) Robbie Gould drilled a 42-yard FG at the buzzer to give the Rams their first loss at their new stadium.

Goff was about as bad as you can be on Sunday, turning the ball over three times and giving the 49ers extra opportunities throughout the game. With that loss, the Rams dropped to 7-4, while the 49ers were able to keep their hopes alive and improve to 5-6, during a season where they’ve been ravaged by injuries from the start. 

And finally, the most anticipated matchup of this weekend went down on Sunday afternoon. Coming off another primetime loss, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers were looking to bounce back against the Kansas City Chiefs.

Well, from the start, the Chiefs made it clear that they were in control of this game. After a quick field goal, QB Patrick Mahomes and WR Tyreek Hill went nuclear in the first quarter and connected on 75- and 44-yard touchdowns to give the Chiefs an early 17-0 lead.

In fact, Hill had 203 receiving yards just after the first quarter! Tampa RB Ronald Jones was able to take a pass from QB Tom Brady 27 yards to the house to cut it to 17-7.

Once again the Chiefs were able to drive down the field and get three more points to extend their lead to 20-7 at halftime.

Then in the third quarter, Hill caught another 20-yard touchdown pass to bring him to three touchdowns in this game. At this point, the Chiefs appeared to take their foot off the gas pedal and cruise through the rest of the game.

In the fourth quarter, the Bucs did their best to come back and win this game but it was too little, too late. Two WR Mike Evans TDs helped the Bucs cut the lead to 27-24 with four minutes left. But the Chiefs got the ball back and didn’t give it up again.

The game ended 27-24, and the Chiefs improved to 10-1.

As for the Bucs, they lost their second straight, and dropped to 7-5 on the season.

Mahomes essentially sealed his MVP bid in this game, with 462 yards and three touchdowns. Hill finished his historic day with 13 receptions and 269 yards along with all three of the Chiefs’ touchdowns. The Chiefs appear to be the best team in the league, even with the undefeated Steelers still looming. 

News and Headlines From Across The League:

  • After an embarrassing 41-25 loss to the Houston Texans on Thanksgiving, the Detroit Lions finally fired head coach Matt Patricia and general manger Bob Quinn.
  • The NY Jets seemed to continue their tank for Clemson University QB Trevor Lawrence and lost again, this time only scoring three points and losing to the Miami Dolphins 20-3. The Jets are the only winless team left in the league.
  • After an outbreak in their QB room, the Denver Broncos played an NFL game without any quarterback on the active roster. Practice squad WR Kendall Hinton struggled immensely and only completed one pass with two interceptions in an ugly 31-3 loss to the New Orleans Saints.
  • The Seahawks took care of business against the Eagles on Monday Night Football, as QB Carson Wentz continued to struggle. Rookie QB Jalen Hurts has begun getting more playing time, and if Wentz continues on his current trend, Hurts could be the starter sooner rather than later.
  • Originally scheduled for Thanksgiving night, the Pittsburgh Steelers and Baltimore Ravens game was postponed for a third time due to a COVID-19 outbreak to 3:40 p.m. ET on Wednesday. 

Games To Look Out For Next Week: 

  • Saints vs. Falcons, Sunday 12/6 at 1:00 p.m.
  • Rams vs. Cardinals, Sunday 12/6 at 4:05 p.m.
  • Eagles vs. Packers, Sunday 12/6 at 4:25 p.m.
  • Washington vs. Steelers, 12/7 at 5:00 p.m.

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