It’s Week 12 already! Can you believe we only have five weeks of regular season games after this one? It’s also the last week of byes – which is good news for fantasy football fans.
There are some tasty looking divisional match-ups this weekend, most notably the league’s hottest team against the defending champions right up in the Pacific north west. Can Drew Stanton lead the Cardinals to yet another victory? A win in Seattle will pretty much secure their play-off spot. Larry Fitzgerald didn’t practice this week because of a knee injury. If Arizona gets to 10&1 they’ll be well on their way to having home advantage right through the post season. Let’s not forget that the Super Bowl is also in their own backyard! There’s talk of Richard Sherman playing Wide Receiver to help the Seahawks’ passing woes. That’ll be worth looking out for.
The Cowboys are in action for the first time since their Wembley win. They’re up against their NFC East rivals, the New York Giants. Eli Manning threw five interceptions last weekend. Can lightning strike twice? DeMarco Murray will be a threat for Dallas against a defense that’s struggled to tackle the rush.
The Lions failed on offense in Arizona last weekend. It doesn’t get easier for them this week as they travel to Gillette Stadium. Detroit’s position at the top of the NFC North is under threat from the in-form Packers, so the pressure is on them to beat the Patriots. Can anyone stop Brady at the minute? Will Jonas Gray be a flash in the pan?
Green Bay take on NFC North rivals Minnesota Vikings at TCF Bank Stadium. The Packers have scored 50+ points two weeks running. They will be full of confidence going into this one against a stuttering Vikings team. Teddy Bridgewater needs more protection if they’re going to turn over this electric Green Bay side.
The Cleveland Browns slipped from top of the AFC North to the bottom last week. They travel to a 4&6 Falcons team that surprised everyone when they topped the NFC South last weekend. Atlanta doesn’t lose many at home, but the Browns have been resilient this season.
Andrew Luck was taught another lesson by the Patriots late last Sunday. He will be hoping to amend some of his mistakes against the 1&9 Jacksonville Jaguars at home.
With wild card places at a premium, the Eagles will not want to slip up at home to the Titans on Sunday. Philly travel to Dallas on Thursday for their Thanksgiving Day clash and host the Cowboys in Week 15. The NFC East might be sorted by early December.
San Francisco stumbled to victory against the Giants last time out. Did Eli gift them the win, or was it down to great defending? They can make it three wins on the bounce on Sunday night when they host a Washington Redskins team that appears to be cracking from their foundations. RGIII fell out with his team mates, again. His coach fell out with him, again. Interestingly, both teams played each other at this stage last year. The 49ers were 6&4 and the Skins were 3&7. San Francisco went on to win every game until the Championship game, whilst the Skins lost all their remaining games.
Chicago finally won a game at Soldier Field last week. They host the Bucs this weekend and will be confident of making it two wins on the bounce. In the AFC, the Bengals travel to Houston and top the North division. How will Andy Dalton fair against the mighty J.J. Watt. Watt’s got more touchdowns than Calvin Johnson this year. Surely that makes him a legitimate MVP candidate?
The Rams must feel they can beat anyone after they stopped Peyton Manning and his Denver Broncos. They travel to San Diego; the Chargers found out how to win again in Week 11. Meanwhile, Peyton has an intriguing match-up at home to Miami.
The Jets fly to Detroit to play the Bills. The snowstorm that hit Buffalo this week has left the town under meters of the white stuff. The game has been moved to Monday, which the Bills must be grateful for because their preparations were halted for a few days.
A losing team might end up winning the NFC South. It took New Orleans 11 games to lose at home and now they’ve lost two in a row. They’re at home again this week, against the Baltimore Ravens. The Ravens have happy memories of the Superdome, having won football’s biggest prize there in the 2012 season. On paper the Saints have the easiest run-in in the NFC South, but they need Drew Brees to find some form. It’s going to be tougher for him now that Wide Receiver Brandin Cooks is out for the season.
So, let’s sit back and enjoy another week of drama from the NFL. We need to start savouring every bit we can because it’ll soon be over for another year.