Week 13 quick takes

Posted Dec 3, 2015

It feels like we are entering the home straight in the race to the end of the regular season and it’s going to be a wide open battle to reach the playoffs with 28 of the league’s 32 teams within two games of a post-season spot.

Green Bay Packers (7-4) at Detroit Lions (3-4)

-          Packers have lost 4 of their last 5 games, while the Lions have won 3 in a row.

-          The Lions are looking to sweep the Packers in a series for the first time since 1991.

-          Since Matthew Stafford was benched for Dan Orlovsky in Week 5 he has thrown 14 TDs and 4 interceptions.

-          In his first 6 games this year (6-0), Aaron Rodgers had a QB rating of 106.1 against the blitz. In the last 5 games (1-4) that rating has dropped to 65.8.

Houston Texans (6-5) at Buffalo Bills (5-6)

-          Texans have won 4 straight games. The Bills have lost 2 in a row and 4 of their last 6 games.

-          Game features former Clemson team-mate receivers in Houston’s DeAndre Hopkins and Buffalo’s Sammy Watkins.

-          Texans head coach Bill O’Brien has not been on a staff that finished with a losing season since he was offensive coordinator at Duke University in 2006.

-          Bills have scored the most big-play TDs (20 yards or more) in NFL this season with 18.

San Francisco 49ers (3-8) at Chicago Bears (5-6)

-          49ers offense ranks last in the NFL in total yards (295.5) and last in scoring (13.8 points per game).

-          49ers have lost 7 straight road games.

-          Bears have won 5 of their last 8 games after an 0-3 start.

-          Jay Cutler has lost his last 5 December starts and is 3-11 in his last 14 home games.

Cincinnati Bengals (9-2) at Cleveland Browns (2-9)

-          Bengals QB Andy Dalton is enjoying a career year, having thrown 23 TDs 6 interceptions and posting a rating of 105.3.

-          A.J. Green (909 receiving yards) is 91 yards shy of a 5th straight 1,000-yard season to start his NFL career.

-          Austin Davis will start at QB for the Browns – he has a 3-5 record as an NFL starter.

-          Browns have lost 6 games in a row after making a 2-3 start.

Baltimore Ravens (4-7) at Miami Dolphins (4-7)

-          Miami are playing their 1st game following the firing of offensive coordinator Bill Lazor – QB coach Zac Taylor takes over the play-calling reins.

-          Baltimore have won 5 of the last 6 meetings between these teams.

-          Ravens QB Matt Schaub has lost 6 of his last 7 starts. He is 5-0 for his career vs. Dolphins.

-          Miami’s defense has allowed more than 400 yards in 4 of their last 5 games.

Seattle Seahawks (6-5) at Minnesota Vikings (8-3)

-          If the season ended today, this would be an NFC Wild Card game with the Vikings hosting the Seahawks.

-          This game features the top two rushing attacks in the NFL – the Vikings are averaging 146.4 yards per contest and the Seahawks 144.2.

-          Seahawks will play of their last 5 games on the road this year – 2-3 on the road in 2015.

-          Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson has thrown for 605 yards and 8 TDs in last 2 weeks.

New York Jets (6-5) at New York Giants (5-6)

-          The Giants have won the past 5 meetings between these Big Apple rivals.

-          Both teams share their home ground so while the Jets are officially the road team, they will be in very familiar surroundings at MetLife Stadium.

-          Jets have lost 4 of their last 6 games.

-          Giants WR Odell Beckham Jr. has gone over 100 yards receiving in 4 straight games.

Arizona Cardinals (9-2) at St. Louis Rams (4-7)

-          Rams won 1st meeting between these teams this season, beating the Cardinals 24-22 in Arizona.

-          Arizona boasts the top-ranked offense in the NFL in terms of yards per game (410) and points per game (32.3).

-          Cardinals WR Larry Fitzgerald (992 yards) needs 8 yards for his 1st 1,000-yard season since 2011.

-          Rams have lost 4 in a row and rank 31st in the NFL with just 16.9 points per game this year.

Atlanta Falcons (6-5) at Tampa Bay Buccaneers (5-6)

-          Both teams sit just outside the playoff picture in the NFC – the Falcons are the number 7 seed and the Buccaneers are currently number 8.

-          Falcons have lost 4 in a row, including a Week 8 loss at home to Tampa Bay.

-          Devonta Freeman should return from injury for Atlanta – he has not scored a rushing TD in last 4 games after finding the end zone in each of the previous 5 weeks.

-          Tampa Bay rank 3rd in the NFL in rushing this season with an average of 141.3.

Jacksonville Jaguars (4-7) at Tennessee Titans (2-9)

-          Jaguars have won 3 of their last 5 games after a 1-5 start.

-          Jaguars QB Blake Bortles leads the NFL with 50 completions of 20 yards.

-          Titans have lost 19 of their last 21 games.

-          Tennessee have lost 11 home games in a row and have not won at home since Week 6 of 2014.

Kansas City Chiefs (6-5) at Oakland Raiders (5-6)

-          Chiefs have won 5 in a row after losing 5 in a row between weeks 2-6.

-          Chiefs have 8 giveaways on season (fewest in NFL) and 0 in the past 5 games.

-          Alex Smith has not thrown an interception in his last 8 games.

-          Raiders have already surpassed their win totals from each of the last 3 years.

Denver Broncos (9-2) at San Diego Chargers (3-8)

-          Broncos have a turnover differential of -2 in Peyton Manning starts and 2 in Brock Osweiler starts.

-          Broncos averaging 411 yards per game with Osweiler under center compared to 331.7 per game with Manning at the helm.

-          Chargers rookie RB Melvin Gordon has 0 TD on 170 touches this season.

-          Chargers QB Philip Rivers leads the NFL with 463 pass attempts and 317 completions this year.

Philadelphia Eagles (4-7) at New England Patriots (10-1)

-          The Eagles have given up 45 points per game in back-to-back losses to Tampa Bay and Detroit.

-          Eagles have scored fewer than 20 points in 3 straight games.

-          Patriots can clinch the AFC East with a win and a New York Jets loss.

-          Tom Brady is 62-4 in his last 66 home games and has a QB rating of 103.1 in those contests.

Carolina Panthers (11-0) at New Orleans Saints (4-7)

-          Panthers have gone more than a whole calendar year without losing a regular season game and have now won 15 regular season games in a row.

-          Saints have gone 6 straight quarters without scoring an offensive touchdown.

-          Panthers have 6 wins by 10 points this season (most in the NFL).

-          Cam Newton is the 1st player in NFL history with 100 passing TDs and 25 rushing TDs in his 1st 5 seasons.

Indianapolis Colts (6-5) at Pittsburgh Steelers (6-5)

-          When these teams met in 2014 it was the highest-scoring game of the season (85 points) as the Steelers ran out winners in a 51-34 showdown.

-          Indianapolis’ Matt Hasselbeck is attempting to become the only QB in NFL history to win 5 straight starts in the same season aged 40 or older.

-          Steelers have scored 30 points or more in 3 straight games – longest streak in club history. And they have gained over 450 yards in each of those contests.

-          The Steelers have three receivers who have enjoyed monster days this season - Antonio Brown (195 vs SF and 284 vs Oak), Martavis Bryant (178 vs Cle) and Markus Wheaton (201 vs Sea) have all enjoyed monster receiving days for the Steelers.

Dallas Cowboys (3-8) at Washington Redskins (5-6)

-          Redskins are 1 of 3 teams (the others being Carolina and Denver) not to allow 300 net passing yards in any game this season.

-          Redskins have won 5 games in a row at home – that is their longest home winning streak since 1991.

-          Cowboys are once again without injured QB Tony Romo – they have gone 0-7 without Romo this year.

-          Redskins have averaged 139 rushing yards per game at home this season and just 44.8 rushing yards per game on the road.

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