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HomeSportsFootballNFL News: Week 12 NFL Capsules

NFL News: Week 12 NFL Capsules


NFL Week 12 capsules

Falcons (4-6) vs. Saints (5-5): Desmond Ridder is back as QB1 for Atlanta, which is desperately trying to pull itself out of a three-game losing streak. Ridder will be up against a New Orleans defense without Pro Bowl cornerback Marshon Lattimore, who was placed on injured reserve on Saturday due to an ankle injury. The NFC South has been the league’s weakest division, evident by the Saints’ status as the top team, but New Orleans could slip in the standings with a loss on Sunday.

Bengals (5-5) vs. Steelers (6-4): With star quarterback Joe Burrow set to undergo season-ending wrist surgery, Cincinnati is turning to Jake Browning under center. Browning has appeared in just two NFL games (zero starts), but the Bengals have faith in him, and he’ll be facing a Pittsburgh defense allowing the 10th-most passing yards per game in the NFL (239.9). Safety Minkah Fitzpatrick (hamstring) has already been ruled out for the game, too. The Steelers’ offense is also in flux, as offensive coordinator Matt Canada was fired on Tuesday.

Texans (6-4) vs. Jaguars (7-3): Houston has already beaten Jacksonville once this season, and another win would give the Texans first place in the AFC South. C.J. Stroud has the Houston offense rolling and has emerged as the clear frontrunner to win Rookie of the Year. He has formed a strong connection with fellow rookie Tank Dell, who has 20 catches for 319 yards and four touchdowns over the last three weeks. Don’t sleep on the Jaguars, though, as they’ve won six of their past seven games since their loss to the Texans on Sept. 24.

Colts (5-5) vs. Buccaneers (4-6): Although it sits two games under .500, Tampa Bay still has a shot to make the playoffs, but its offense has been scuffling. The Buccaneers have scored just 34 points over their past two games and will be looking to break through against a stout defense that held the Panthers to 13 points on Nov. 5 before suffocating the Patriots in a 10-6 victory on Nov. 12. Indianapolis linebacker Zaire Franklin has been a monster, posting the third-most tackles (117) in the league.

Giants (3-8) vs. Patriots (2-8): The days of New York and New England meeting in the Super Bowl are long gone, to say the least. The only team averaging fewer points per game than the Patriots (14.1) happens to be the Giants (13.5). New England coach Bill Belichick hasn’t even named a starting quarterback yet, and he’s essentially picking between the lesser of two evils with Mac Jones (2,031 passing yards, 10 TDs, 10 interceptions) and Bailey Zappe (104 yards, 0 TDs, one interception). For the Giants, Daniel Jones’ torn ACL has opened the door for Tommy DeVito, who could have New York playing inspired football after throwing for three touchdowns in a 31-19 victory over the Commanders last week.

Titans (3-7) vs. Panthers (1-9): Could this be the week Tennessee running back Derrick Henry turns back the clock? Henry has carried the ball 21 times for just 62 yards in the past two weeks combined, but he might be able to find some relief against a Carolina defense surrendering 129.4 rushing yards per game. Carolina’s secondary is also in disarray, as cornerbacks Jaycee Horn (hamstring) and C.J. Henderson (concussion) are doubtful and safety Sam Franklin Jr. (quadriceps) is questionable.

Cardinals (2-9) vs. Rams (4-6): Los Angeles snapped a three-game skid on the heels of its defense last week, as the Rams held the Seahawks to just 87 yards in the second half. Now Los Angeles will try its best to contain Arizona, which has yet to get the desired results from Kyler Murray from his first two games. Murray has thrown for 463 yards, one touchdown and two picks, but he should have some space to operate against a Rams defense that has just five interceptions and 21 sacks this season.

Broncos (5-5) vs. Browns (7-3): Perhaps no team has battled adversity better than Cleveland. The Browns are without starting quarterback Deshaun Watson and star running back Nick Chubb for the season, but Dorian Thompson-Robinson and Jerome Ford are doing just enough to back one of the best defenses in the league. However, Denver has rattled off four straight wins, and Russell Wilson has thrown seven TDs without an interception during that stretch.

Kansas City Chiefs (7-3) at Las Vegas Raiders (5-6): Sunday begins a stretch of three straight home games for the Raiders, who carry a four-game winning streak at Allegiant Stadium since losing to Pittsburgh in their home opener in Week 3. “That Black Hole has to be real,” Raiders interim coach Antonio Pierce said. Patrick Mahomes and the Chiefs have won five of the six meetings between the division rivals since the Raiders relocated to Las Vegas. They’re vowing to stay positive after being held scoreless in the second half of its 21-17 defeat to the Philadelphia Eagles in a Super Bowl LVII rematch.

Buffalo Bills (6-5) at Philadelphia Eagles (9-1): A.J. Brown and Jalen Hurts had an animated chat on the sidelines after a botched play led to a Chiefs interception in the second quarter last week. In spite of Brown’s one catch for 8 yards, the Eagles still won and stand a league-best 9-1. Like Brown, Stefon Diggs has been kept under wraps this month after topping 100 receiving yards in five of Buffalo’s first six games. The Bills didn’t need a big game from Diggs to smother the New York Jets last week and snap a two-game skid, but he could hold the key to torching an Eagles secondary that ranks 28th with 248.1 passing yards allowed per game.

Baltimore Ravens (8-3) at Los Angeles Chargers (4-6): Lamar Jackson is dealing with a left ankle injury sustained in the Ravens’ last game Nov. 16, but he wasn’t on the injury report this week and insists the ankle will be fine against the Chargers. Jackson won’t have top target Mark Andrews, as the tight end underwent ankle surgery this week. Still, the Ravens have won five of six as they run into a Chargers squad that keeps finding new ways to lose close games. Los Angeles has lost five games by three points or fewer this season, including last week’s 23-20 defeat at Green Bay.

Chicago Bears (3-8) at Minnesota Vikings (6-5): Minnesota’s five-game winning streak may have ended last week in a 21-20 loss at Denver, but the Vikings saved their season with that streak, which began with a 19-13 win at Chicago. The biggest question this week is whether folk-hero quarterback Joshua Dobbs will get to team up with star wideout Justin Jefferson for the first time. Jefferson (hamstring) is listed as questionable; he’s been out from Week 6 on, before Kirk Cousins was lost for the season and Dobbs was acquired. Meanwhile, Justin Fields said the Bears are “better than what we put on tape” in the first meeting with Minnesota, but Chicago must evaluate whether to stick with Fields long-term as the team is about to earn two high draft picks this spring.

–Field Level Media

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