NFL Week 12 starts with an AFC South showdown as the 6-4 division-leading Indianapolis Colts take on the 6-4 Houston Texans on Thursday Night Football. The winner of this game obviously moves into first but the winner also gets confidence heading down the stretch. The Texans are coming off of a blowout loss against the Ravens and the Colts are coming off of a blowout win against the Jacksonville Jaguars. Many games have implications like this or close to this and many are for positioning in the playoffs and that’s what the NFL needs. Here are the NFL week 12 games to watch.
NFL Week 12 Games To Watch
Panthers vs Saints
This is more than likely do or die for the Carolina Panthers as they sit at 5-5 and travel to face one of the best teams in the NFL, the New Orleans Saints who sit at 8-2. The Panthers started hot with quarterback Kyle Allen under center but now the hype has gone away and they sit in a cold stretch. If they want any chance of making the playoffs and being a legit opponent, they need a really good win against their division opponent. The Saints will be fighting for playoff seeding at the top of the NFC. They are one of the handful of teams with eight wins or more. This is really important for the Panthers than it is for the Saints but a win for either would do them great.
Seahawks vs Eagles
The Seattle Seahawks are another team with eight wins and fighting not only for the NFC West division but for playoff seeding at the top. They are one game back of the 49ers who only have one loss. Many have Russell Wilson as the MVP front runner and he has been what has them in this position. This can be a trap game for the Seahawks and many are waiting to see if they can keep doing what they are doing.
On the other hand, the Philadelphia Eagles are in need of a win. They are only one game out of the NFC East but with the wild card moving away fast, the division is what the Eagles are most likely to try and settle for. People are still waiting to see the Eagles click and get consistency. They’ve had injuries along the way but they will be the first to tell you that it’s not an excuse. This will be an interesting game for both teams involved.
Ravens vs Rams
The Baltimore Ravens look to be the most dangerous team in the NFL at 8-2 with dual-threat quarterback Lamar Jackson and the defense starting to look like the old Ravens we are used to seeing. They are on a six-game winning streak with wins over the Seahawks, Texans, and the Patriots. This team is dynamic and that’s what the Rams need to stop. They need to find a way to contain Jackson from running and no team has figured that out so far.
The Los Angeles Rams defense needs to get better but the most concerning part has been the offense. Jared Goff has had an off-year as well as the whole offense. Cooper Kupp and Robert Woods have been a let down as well. This is a huge game for the Rams as they try and stay in the race not only for the division but the wild card on Monday Night Football.
Cowboys vs Patriots
This has been a match-up that a lot of people couldn’t wait to see. The Dallas Cowboys lead their division by a game at 6-4 and the New England Patriots lead their division by two games and only have one loss. The Cowboys are looking to pull away from the Eagles in their division and capture another playoff berth. The Cowboys offense led by Dak Prescott is really good. Many consider Prescott as a candidate for the MVP. If he’s not throwing to Amari Cooper, he’s throwing to Michael Gallup and if he’s not throwing to Gallup, he’s throwing to Randall Cobb. They have a great receiving core and a veteran tight end in Jason Witten that can get it done. The defense needs to be a little better and help out the offense. The defense was a big part for the Cowboys early on but they are falling behind.
On the other side, a meeting in Foxborough in never fun. The Patriots have ridiculous numbers in New England. The last couple of weeks haven’t been what Tom Brady and the offense had in mind. Brady called out the offense and doesn’t like what he has been seeing even at 9-1. The defense is putting up all-time numbers which is what makes them so dangerous. This game will be a lot of fun for these fans. It will probably be the highest-rated game since the Super Bowl.
Packers vs 49ers
The final game on Sunday belongs to two great teams. The Green Bay Packers are 8-2 and travel to face the 9-1 San Francisco 49ers. The Packers are coming off their bye and feel better than ever. The offense has been clicking now for the last handful of games and the defense looks like they’are back from the mid-season slump. They are giving up a lot of yards in the air which is good news Jimmy Garoppolo and company but the Packers stars look to change that in prime-time.
The 49ers suffered their first loss against the Seahawks a couple of weeks ago in a gritty performance. The 49ers offense is clicking and the defense is what drives them. They have one of the toughest three-game stretches of any team in a long time. The Packers at home and then travel to face the Ravens and Saints. They all combined for a record of 24-6. The 49ers are nowhere safe and it’s the difference between a division winner with a bye to a wild card team at the six seed or even missing the playoffs. This game on Sunday Night Football will be one of if not the best game of week 12.
The Final Drive
Many fascinating games in NFL week 12 set up for a great rest of the season. The top of the NFC is stacked with teams at either eight or nine wins. The AFC is an interesting fight with the Patriots for the top spot. The Ravens seem like the most likely to push the Patriots but don’t count out the Kansas City Chiefs with Patrick Mahomes. These next few weeks will tell us more about these teams and will tell us who to buy stock on.
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