Raiders – 24 (1-10), Chiefs – 20 (7-4) Thursday Night Game
Heroes – Latavius Murray (112 RuYd, 2 TD), James Jones (47 ReYd, 1 TD), Jamaal Charles (80 RuYd, 42 PaYd, 1 TD), Anthony Fasano (30 ReYd, 1 TD)
Zeroes – Darren McFadden (29 RuYd, 5 ReYd), Dwayne Bowe (42 ReYd)
The Raiders finally picked up a well deserved and hard-fought win against the Chiefs on Thursday, after dropping 16 losses in a row dating back to last season. The win showed the Raiders resolve, while also proving that any team, on any Sunday, can win a football game. Fans got to see the unveiling of Latavius Murray, and his potential if the Raiders continue to put the ball in his hands as he scored in the second quarter on a 90-yard run making the Chiefs defense look foolish on the play. The Raiders were able to give quarterback Derek Carr some help as they put up season highs in rushing yards, YPC and rushing attempts. The Chiefs schedule down the road doesn’t bode well for them, so losing to the previously win-less Raiders hits hard.
Interesting Game Fact: The Chiefs still have not completed a TD pass to a wide receiver this season.
Browns – 26 (7-4), Falcons – 24 (4-7)
Heroes – Isaiah Crowell (88 RuYd, 2 TD), Josh Gordon (120 ReYd), Andrew Hawkins (93 ReYd), Julio Jones (68 ReYd, 1 TD), Roddy White (96 ReYd), Steven Jackson (34 RuYd, 17 ReYd, 1 TD)
Zeroes – None
The big story this weekend for the Browns was the return of receiver Josh Gordon from suspension. Gordon missed the first 10 games of the season but was immediately slotted into the starting lineup. Brian Hoyer wasn’t able to find him in the end zone this week, although good things are definitely coming for Gordon owners. The Browns relied on the legs of rookie running back Isaiah Crowell as he scored two TDs, giving the Browns a total of 14 rushing TDs on the season. The Falcons offense struggled to convert Matt Ryan’s two fourth-quarter interceptions into offensive TDs, instead settling for one field goal only. The real killer, however, was the Browns internal toughness as Hoyer set up kicker Billy Cundiff’s 37-yard game winner with only five seconds left in the game by completing four straight passes.
Interesting Game Fact: Josh Gordon was targeted 17 times.
Eagles – 43 (8-3), Titans – 24 (2-9)
Heroes – LeSean McCoy (130 RuYd, 1 TD), Darren Sproles (25 RuYd, 14 ReYd, 1 TD), Jordan Matthews (77 ReYd), James Casey (14 ReYd, 1 TD), Cody Parkey (5 FG), Josh Huff (107-yard KR), Zach Mettenberger (345 PaYd, 2 TD, 1 INT), Delanie Walker (155 ReYd), Shonn Greene (15 ReYd, 1 TD), Justin Hunter (64 ReYd, 1 TD)
Zeroes – Jeremy Maclin (59 ReYd), Bishop Sankey (37 RuYd, 14 ReYd), Kendall Wright (28 ReYd)
The return to fantasy relevance for LeSean McCoy and all of his DFS owners was nice to see, as he gained 100 of his 130 rushing yards with a little over four minutes remaining in the second quarter. McCoy had some help as Mark Sanchez continued to show his grit and toughness as he exploited the Titans defense often. Add in some fantastic special teams play for the Eagles and last weeks brutal beating at the hands of the Packers is just a long-distance memory. The Eagles’ Josh Huff returned the opening kickoff 107 yards for the touchdown, while kicker Cody Parkey nailed five field goals on the day.
Interesting Game Fact: The Eagles have now scored 10 non-offensive touchdowns on the season.
Patriots – 34 (9-2), Lions – 9 (7-4)
Heroes – Tom Brady (349 PaYd, 2 TD, 1 INT), Legarrette Blount (78 RuYd, 2 TD), Brandon LaFell (98 ReYd), Julian Edelman (89 ReYd), Tim Wright (36 ReYd, 2 TD), Golden Tate (97 ReYd)
Zeroes – Danny Amendola (0 ReYd), Matthew Stafford (264 PaYd, 1 INT), Calvin Johnson (58 ReYd), Joique Bell (48 RuYd, -2 ReYd)
The Patriots are well known for their tremendous offensive abilities with superstar quarterback Tom Brady leading the way, but their defense gets massive credit in this game as they shut down Matthew Stafford and Calvin Johnson limiting the Lions to three field goals on the day as Stafford only completed 39.1 percent of his passes on Sunday. Darrelle Revis broke up four passes directed his way as he guarded Golden Tate most of the day, as Stafford only completed one pass in his direction. Brady targeted Brandon LaFell 12 times on Sunday as LaFell brought in nine of those passes, opening up the Patriots offense even more. Recently signed LeGarrette Blount paid immediate dividends for the Pats as he scored twice as running back Jonas Gray watched from the sidelines after being benched by coach Bill Belichick for showing up late to practice last Friday.
Interesting Game Fact: Calvin Johnson only had one catch for 16 yards in the first half of the game.
Packers – 24 (8-3), Vikings – 21 (4-7)
Heroes – Eddie Lacy (125 RuYd, 13 ReYd, 2 TD), Charles Johnson (52 ReYd, 1 TD), Greg Jennings (38 ReYd, 1 TD)
Zeroes – Randall Cobb (58 ReYd), Davante Adams (10 ReYd)
Although the Packers didn’t dominate on Sunday afternoon, they showed the league that they can win football games without Aaron Rodgers going pass-happy crazy. In fact, Eddie Lacy proved to be the offensive hero for the Packers as he racked up his first 100-yard rushing game since Week 5 of the season, which, coincidentally, was also against the Vikings. Lacy picked up 70 of his 125 yards after first contact, while scoring his fourth and fifth TDs against the Vikings over his young career. The Vikings kept things close as they scored a TD on a Teddy Bridgewater-to-Greg Jennings pass with a little over three minutes in the game. They managed to pick up the two-point conversion to follow, but couldn’t wrestle the ball back from Rodgers when it counted.
Interesting Game Fact: Even without the services of Adrian Peterson, the Vikings are ranked sixth in the NFL this season in yards per rush.
Colts – 23 (7-4), Jaguars – 3 (1-10)
Heroes – Trent Richardson (42 RuYd, 1 TD), T.Y. Hilton (122 ReYd, 15 RuYd, 1 TD), Daniel Herron (65 RuYd, 31 ReYd)
Zeroes – Reggie Wayne (10 ReYd), Coby Fleener (28 ReYd), Hakeem Nicks (16 ReYd), Blake Bortles (146 PaYd, 1 INT), Allen Hurns (13 ReYd)
Sometimes things just don’t go right, even for Andrew Luck. The Colts young quarterback pushed his club to victory against the one-win Jaguars, even after a miserable first half where he was sacked five times while fumbling three times, losing two of them. The Jaguars’ defense played with heart, but in the end it wasn’t enough to prevent a 73-yard TD pass to T.Y. Hilton in the third quarter putting the Colts up 20-3. The Colts defense did their part as they limited the Jaguars offense to only 11 first downs in the game.
Interesting Game Fact: Andrew Luck was 6-of-6 for 113 yards on play-action fake plays.
Bengals – 22 (7-3-1), Texans – 13 (5-6)
Heroes – Jeremy Hill (87 RuYd, 9 ReYd, 1 TD), A.J. Green (121 ReYd), Mohamed Sanu (48 ReYd, 1 TD)
Zeroes – Andy Dalton (233 PaYd, 1 TD, 1 INT), Ryan Mallett (189 PaYd, 1 INT), DeAndre Hopkins (39 ReYd), Andre Johnson (36 ReYd)
The Bengals gave a sigh of relief as their stud running back, Giovani Bernard, returned to action after missing three games to injury. The Bengals didn’t take it easy on Bernard as he rushed the ball 17 times, as his rookie RB mate, Jeremy Hill, rushed 18 times with the Bengals controlling the ball picking up a total of 139 yards on the ground as a team. Andy Dalton bounced back from an awful Week 11, as the Bengals set him up nicely in a quick-release passing game plan. The Bengals defense did a stand-up job as they didn’t allow an offensive TD to the Texans, while landing their third safety of the season.
Interesting Game Fact: Andre Johnson passed Randy Moss to move up to 10th on the career reception list with 985.
Bears – 21 (5-6), Buccaneers – 13 (2-9)
Heroes- Matt Forte (89 RuYd, 23 ReYd, 2 TD), Alshon Jeffery (22 ReYd, 1 TD), Josh McCown (341 PaYd, 12 RuYd, 1 TD, 2 INT), Vincent Jackson (117 ReYd), Louis Murphy (113 ReYd), Mike Evans (47 ReYd, 1 TD)
Zeroes – Jay Cutler (130 PaYd, 1 TD), Brandon Marshall (32 ReYd), Martellus Bennett (37 ReYd), Doug Martin (27 RuYd, 4 ReYd), Charles Sims (22 RuYd, 11 ReYd)
The Bears will take the win, even as messy as it was. Offensively, the Bears only managed 12 first downs as they relied on their defense to snag four turnovers from the Buccaneers. It was good enough to keep their playoff hopes alive, as Matt Forte provided his normal game production. The Bears sacked the Bucs Josh McCown five times on the day, which was a season high for them in 2014. Jay Cutler, who leads the league in turnovers with 18, had a rough day only completing 17 passes.
Interesting Game Fact: Doug Martin returned to action after missing three games with an ankle injury.
Seahawks – 19 (7-4), Cardinals – 3 (9-2)
Heroes – Russell Wilson (211 PaYd, 73 RuYd, 1 TD), Marshawn Lynch (39 RuYd, 43 ReYd), Cooper Helfet (27 ReYd, 1 TD), Steven Hauschka (4 FG)
Zeroes – Doug Baldwin (6 ReYd), Drew Stanton (149 PaYd, 23 RuYd, 1 INT), Michael Floyd (0 ReYd)
The Seahawks defense ran it’s magic against the Cardinals, who were 9-1 heading into the contest. The Cards could only muster 204 total yards, while key players like Andre Ellington and Michael Floyd were completely shut down. Floyd did not record a reception, his second time over his last five games played. It was obvious the Cards missed the services of Larry Fitzgerald, who was out with a knee injury. Russell Wilson survived seven sacks by the Cards defense, as he completed an efficient 17-of-22 passes while also rushing for 73 yards on the day en route to the victory.
Interesting Game Fact: Russell Wilson was 11-of-13 for 153 yards while facing the Cardinals blitz rush.
Chargers – 27 (7-4), Rams – 24 (4-7)
Heroes – Ryan Mathews (105 RuYd, 8 ReYd, 1 TD), Keenan Allen (104 ReYd, 1 TD), Tre Mason (62 RuYd, 26 ReYd), Stedman Bailey (89 ReYd, 1 TD), Tavon Austin (27 RuYd, 11 RuYd, 1 TD)
Zeroes – Antonio Gates (14 ReYd), Shaun Hill (198 ReYd, 1 TD, 2 INT), Kenny Britt (37 ReYd)
Lady Luck was on the Chargers side. Safety Marcus Gilchrist saved the day as he intercepted a Shaun Hill pass with 56 seconds left in the game, as the Rams were on the four-yard line on the verge of scoring to take the lead. Hill forced the pass into coverage, while Gilchrist was able to jump the route without Hill even seeing him. Ryan Mathews stepped up in a huge way for the Chargers as he broke free in the third quarter for a 32-yard TD run, while topping the 100-yard mark for only the second time this season. The Rams, who have been an up-and-down team all season, can’t build consistency week-to-week, although they’ve been plagued by quarterback injury and under performance. Shaun Hill’s interception was the fifth this season in the fourth quarter trailing by seven points or less.
Interesting Game Fact: The Chargers receivers gained 205 yards after the catch.
Broncos – 39 (8-3), Dolphins – 36 (6-5)
Heroes – Peyton Manning (257 PaYd, 4 TD), C.J. Anderson (167 RuYd, 28 ReYd, 1 TD), Emmanuel Sanders (125 ReYd), Demaryius Thomas (87 ReYd, 3 TD), Wes Welker (18 ReYd, 1 TD), Ryan Tannehill (228 ReYd, 15 RuYd, 4 TD, 1 INT), Jarvis Landry (50 ReYd, 2 TD), Mike Wallace (35 ReYd, 1 TD)
Zeroes – None
The Broncos trio of Peyton Manning, Demaryius Thomas and C.J. Anderson combined for most of the teams 450 total yards on offense as they scored three times in the fourth quarter to erase a 28-17 Dolphins lead. Anderson picked up 130 of his 167 rushing yards before he was even touched by a Dolphins defender, showing that the Broncos are not a one-dimensional team. Ryan Tannehill, who has come into his own as an NFL quarterback, threw three TDs and padded the Dolphins with a lead until the fourth quarter, but in the end the Dolphins defense couldn’t keep Manning in check. Can any team?
Interesting Game Fact: All seven of Mike Wallace’s TDs this season have been in the red zone.
49ers – 17 (7-4), Redskins – 13 (3-8)
Heroes – Anquan Boldin (137 ReYd, 1 TD), Alfred Morris (125 RuYd, 5 ReYd, 1 TD)
Zeroes – Frank Gore (36 RuYd), Robert Griffin III (106 PaYd, 11 RuYd), DeSean Jackson (39 ReYd), Pierre Garcon (34 ReYd)
The 49ers don’t have an easy road ahead of them if they expect to make the playoffs, as the Redskins gave quite a fight defensively. Robert Griffin III, however, and the Redskins offense was another story, as the Niners defense held the Skins to 213 total yards on offense. Colin Kaepernick didn’t have his best game statistically, but he led the Niners to the win as they capitalized on their first fourth-quarter TD of the season. Anquan Boldin provided player-of-the-game honors (in this humble writer’s opinion) as he proved once again that he’s the Niners No. 1 receiving option, giving the team the boost needed in passing situations.
Interesting Game Fact: The Redskins offense has turned the ball over 20 times this season, which is tied fourth in the NFL.
Cowboys – 31 (8-3), Giants – 28 (3-8)
Heroes – Tony Romo (275 PaYd, 4 TD), DeMarco Murray (121 RuYd, 22 ReYd), Dez Bryant (86 ReYd, 2 TD), Cole Beasley (66 ReYd, 1 TD), Jason Witten (30 ReYd, 1 TD), Eli Manning (338 PaYd, 3 TD, 1 INT), Rashad Jennings (52 RuYd, 68 ReYd), Andre Williams (35 RuYd, 12 ReYd, 1 TD), Odell Beckham, Jr. (146 ReYd, 2 TD)
Zeroes – Terrance Williams (18 ReYd), Larry Donnell (24 ReYd), Rueben Randle (36 ReYd)
It’s all about the trenches. The Cowboys have built up one of the best offensive lines in the NFL as they gave Tony Romo incredible protection all game long. Romo, who averaged 10.6 yards per reception, destroyed the Giants secondary with four TD passes. Although, the Giants made the game a tight contest, Romo was able to put together his 27th career come-from-behind victory. Eli Manning bounced back from his five-interception game in Week 11, as he targeted Odell Beckham, Jr. often connecting 10 times one of which was the miraculous one-handed catch at the front corner of the end zone. I’m sure you’ve seen the play many times by now, but if for some reason you’ve had your head buried in the sand make sure you give the highlight a look – it’s the best catch I’ve ever seen.
Interesting Game Fact: DeMarco Murray had his tenth 100-yard rushing game of the season. Yep, that’s right… tenth.
Thanks for tuning in and I’ll see you for Week 13! And, don’t forget that you can catch me on Twitter @TheRolyPolyBoy