NFL Week 12 wraps up with tonight’s game between the Baltimore Ravens and the LA Rams, and that game promises to be the culmination of a week packed full of energy and explosions.  The Ravens are favored to win, and most likely will, but not before an obstinate Rams defense makes things difficult.  Making things difficult seemed to be the theme this weekend, as more than one game didn’t go exactly as planned.

NFL Week 12 Reviewed

About the only thing that went right for the top teams this weekend was San Francisco’s win over the Green Bay Packers.  The 49ers are now 10-1 and are on top of the NFC standings.  They’re definitely headed for the playoffs and they showed everyone yesterday why they deserve to be there.

Things got off to a bad start almost from the beginning when Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers suddenly found himself on the losing end of a major sack that also resulted in the ball being stripped away.  From there, the Niners took control and kept it throughout the entire contest, including with the 61-yard pass completion right up the middle between Jimmy Garoppolo and George Kittle.  Kittle finished off the play by running the ball into the end zone, further sealing the fate of the Packers as they would go on to lose 23-8.

With that victory in week 12, San Fran made it known that they’re in the NFL to win it.  They’re not playing around this season and are ready to go all the way to the Super Bowl.  Since the NFC picture isn’t yet clear, there’s no way to know who they will face, but things are going to get interesting in the postseason.

The New Orleans Saints almost blew it, close to a repeat performance of the loss at the hands of the Atlanta Falcons.  They started strong against the Carolina Panthers before the defense got sloppy and the two teams struggled with who would be in the lead until almost the end of the game.  Tied at 31 with only minutes to go, it looked like the Saints would be handed another humiliating defeat.

With 1:56, the Panthers went for a 28-yard field goal in what should have been a chip shot for any self-respecting NFL kicker.  It sailed right and the Panthers could see the writing on the wall.  The Saints would get the ball back and quarterback Drew Brees would work his magic, sending the offense all the way down the field to get in range for Wil Lutz.  A 33-yarder went through the uprights with just a few seconds on the clock, and it was over.

The truth is, the Saints should have had the game locked up from the start.  They played sloppy, just like they have in several games this year (although some would blame the game’s pace on the referees).  However, there is one thing the Saints can always count on and one reason they have a good chance of being in the playoffs, as well as possibly going to the Super Bowl.  Brees is great under pressure.  He keeps his cool and has a strong line to buy him time.  With him under center, the Saints can do a lot of damage.  He’ll need to keep it up, as he’ll face the 49ers on December 8.

The Oakland Raiders are second in the NFL AFC West, but you’d never know it by the way they played on Sunday in week 12.  Going up against the New York Jets, with a dismal 4-7 record, should have been a relatively easy game, but the Oakland squad has been anything but consistent this season.  They won three in a row and perhaps got a little too cocky as they looked for their fourth straight win.

The list of problems the Raiders saw yesterday is too long to print.  The defense was not synchronized at all during the contest and quarterback Derek Carr couldn’t keep himself together.  He saw the lowest passer rating since 2017 and had to eventually be pulled from the game.  While still in a hunt for a Wild Card spot, the Raiders shouldn’t expect too much if they can’t stay focused.  Losing 34-3 against the Jets is not how you stay focused.