Most of the Week 14 slate were blowout victories by the favored team, but the 4:25 p.m. slate gave us two incredibly entertaining overtime games between the Buffalo Bills vs Tampa Bay Buccaneers and the San Francisco 49ers vs. the Cincinnati Bengals. Both games ended on walk-off touchdowns, the 49ers with a diving Brandon Aiyuk with an outstretched arm that just grazes inside the pylon, and the Buccaneers with Tom Brady’s 700th touchdown pass — a 58-yard catch and run by Breshod Perriman.
The end of the 1 p.m. slate had interesting finishes that made the games look much closer than they actually were. Other games featured the Jaguars shutout by the Titans 20-3, the Chiefs annihilating the Raiders 48-9, and Saints running over the Jets 30-9 at MetLife Stadium. Here are some winners and losers from Sunday’s games.
Buccaneers and 49ers
As previously mentioned, the ending of the 4:25 ET slate of games was wildly exciting. Both teams fought in overtime, with both teams surrendering leads in the second half, but they both came away with the victory. The Buccaneers had a 24-3 lead at halftime, but Josh Allen and the Bills’ offense started to assemble drives while having some success in creating explosive plays.
The 49ers were leading the Bengals 20-6 after their first possession in the second half. Joe Burrow had a great fourth quarter to tie this game up, finding Ja’Marr Chase for two touchdowns. Both Allen and Burrow would be on this list if their team’s could have secured victory; both the Bills and Bengals received the ball in overtime. Here are the two overtime touchdowns.
Russell Wilson and the Seattle Seahawks offense aren’t playing to their expectations, but they faced the Texans this week. Penny, the brother of Elijaa Penny, was a controversial first-round selection by the Seahawks in 2018. He spent most of his career injured or behind Chris Carson on the depth chart. Carson and Adrian Peterson weren’t available for this game, so he rumbled for 137 yards on 16 carries for two touchdowns.
Pete Carroll and the Seahawks want their identity to revolve around running the football, but Alex Collins and the Seattle rushing attack has struggled to say the least. The 2-11 Texans act as a get right game, and Penny wasn’t the only winner from the matchup. Russell Wilson threw 260 yards and two touchdowns, 142 of those yards, and one of those touchdowns went to Tyler Lockett. Seattle set their season scoring record with 33 points. They will travel to Los Angeles to play the Rams next week, the team he hurt his finger against earlier in the season.
The Chiefs have struggled to uphold the preseason mantle as the most dangerous team in the NFL. Despite a 9-4 record, the Chiefs haven’t exactly met expectations. The offense was turnover prone, and they had to win a lot of close games, while the defense struggled earlier this season.
Well, that seems to have changed; defensive coordinator Steve Spagnuolo has his defense playing at a high level, as the Chiefs defeated the Raiders 48-9 on Sunday. The Chiefs allowed 29, 36, 30, 30, and 38 points through the first five weeks of the year. They have allowed exactly 9 points in each of the last three games. The Chiefs haven’t allowed more than 20 points since their Week 7 27-3 beatdown at the hand of Tennessee. Kansas City’s defense is read hot; the Chiefs have a Thursday Night matchup against the Chargers in Week 15.
They almost blew it! Cleveland was up 24-6 early in the second half; the Ravens fumbled the football on the opening second half drive, and everything seemed to be going the Browns way, but they narrowly escaped losing with a 24-22 victory. Ravens star quarterback Lamar Jackson exited the game with an ankle injury, yet Tyler Hunter, Mark Andrews, and Rashod Bateman almost scratched and clawed their way to victory.
Despite almost blowing the game, in traditional Browns fashion, they deserve to be winners because they HAD to win this game. The AFC playoff race is very tight. The win puts the Browns one game behind the 8 -5 Ravens at 7-6. The Browns are now ahead of the Bengals due to the 41-16 victory earlier in the season, but the two teams face each other again in week 18. This win was crucial to the playoff hopes of the Browns. They face the Raiders next week at home before two road games in Green Bay and Pittsburgh.
The Las Vegas Raiders did not show up to their Week 14 game against the Chiefs. This team circled Arrowhead in their buses after defeating the Chiefs last year, and then had a purposeful pre-game meeting on the Chiefs logo; they followed those cocky acts up with one of the more embarrassing performances in recent memory - a 48-9 defeat. The first play of the game was a Josh Jacobs fumble returned for a touchdown.
Kansas City quarterback Patrick Mahomes didn’t have to do too much, but he was incredibly efficient - he finished the game 20 of 24 for 258 yards and two touchdowns. Clyde Edwards-Helaire had two rushing touchdowns and Derrick Gore had a garbage time 51-yard touchdown run.
One of Mahomes touchdown passes went to running back Darrel Williams - START your running backs against the Raiders, apparently. Josh Gordon had the other touchdown.
The three-time National Championship head coach doesn’t seem long for the NFL, as he continues his embattled campaign as an NFL head coach. Several peculiar stories developed throughout the Jacksonville Jaguars 2-11 season. This week in particular might be the worst of them all, and the 20-0 shutout loss was the rotten cherry on top (and yes, that may include the Ohio bar week!)
Reports surfaced that Meyer and veteran wide receiver Marvin Jones Jr. were in a heated argument during practice this week. Meyer refuted the story about Jones, but did not refute this next story ... apparently, Meyer accosted his coaching staff and asked them to defend their resumes in a pompous manner. He also asked assistant coaches what they had ever won. This is complete and utter petulance that lacks any sort of professionalism. Everything from these reports, to the terrible on-field product, to him having a conversation with his shoes for an extended amount of time when asked about the open USC job in September.
Then there was this gem after the Titans loss.
Mike Vrabel was on Urban Meyer’s coaching staff at Ohio State pic.twitter.com/E5v0xfiQWd— Trevor Sikkema (@TampaBayTre) December 12, 2021
Followed up by this.
Reports surfaced that Jaguars’ owner Shad Khan intends to “stay the course” with Meyer. I am not certain exactly what that means, but Trevor Lawrence deserves better than whatever is currently going on in Jacksonville.
The now 5-8 Panthers fell to the 6-7 Falcons at home, and Newton was effectively benched in favor of P.J. Walker. The Panthers and head coach Matt Rhule continue to struggle with finding their signal caller. They traded three selections for Sam Darnold, who was incredibly bad before an injury. Newton is exciting, and does a great job near the goal line, but continues to struggle with consistent, accurate passing.
Before the game, Rhule intimated that he may use Walker, who threw 12 passes in the game. Rhule used Walker after Darnold failed against the Giants earlier in the season. It may be only a matter of time before Rhule gives Walker another full-time start. The only game Walker fully started was the 34-10 victory in Arizona, but that was mostly a defensive effort. Carolina has lost three games in a row, and four out of the last five. They travel to Buffalo to play the Bills next week.