Welcome to another installment of my weekly NFL Column. My goal is to watch everything so that you don’t have to. I will present to you the best games to watch back; the craziest moments; the best individual performances and the season-long stat leaders and records. I will also be previewing the upcoming gameweek, too.
If that sounds like something you’re interested in, check in each week.
Not everybody in the UK has the ability to watch almost 20 hours of live NFL every week, but I’ll make sure you don’t miss anything you’d wish you didn’t. Without further delay…
This is what happened This Week in the NFL.
Game of the Week
If you can only watch one full game in its entirety, watch this one:
Kansas City Chiefs @ Los Angeles Chargers
Have you watched it yet?
This game was a pretty easy prediction for my Game of the Week. Patrick Mahomes vs Justin Herbert is a near enough guaranteed shootout. The Chargers did a damn good job in this game and Herbert played really well. LA were even winning with less than a minute left in the game!
But, you know…
Kansas City Chiefs 30 @ 27 Los Angeles Chargers
This was a really exciting game of football. Yes, in hindsight it will be remembered as just another ridiculous win for the Chiefs, but it was a rollercoaster to get there. The Chargers were in a great position, throughout the entire game. Joshua Palmer’s 50-yard TD reception in the first quarter set the tone and their offense, which looked better than they have in some disappointing recent games.
However, the Chiefs are never far behind. In the second half, their defense improved, and they managed to get it really going. The star of the show was Travis Kelce, who I’m happy to crown as the best receiving Tight End in history at this point. He is so unimaginably difficult to guard and he dominates defenses with ease. This week was just one of those Kelce games. He scored a hat-trick and all but won the game on his own – literally only he and Harrison Butker contributed Chiefs points.
The final drive was beautiful so I encourage anybody who didn’t watch the game to go and watch it, it’s a great demonstration on how calm and collected Patrick Mahomes remains in the most stressful situations possible. Kelce scored the game-winning TD and finished an epic night with yet another HOF-worthy performance to add to the pile.
Other games to watch back
Cincinnati Bengals @ Pittsburgh Steelers
Upset of the Week
I did not see this coming, at all.
Dallas Cowboys 40 – 3 Minnesota Vikings
This was a warning shot across the bow of every NFC team from the Dallas Cowboys. The Vikings have been absolutely brilliant this season, and they looked amateurish compared to Dak and co. this weekend. The scoreline only tells half the story. Kirk Cousins only mustered up 105 passing yards and was sacked 7 times by a Dallas defense that was absolutely salivating with every dropback. Micah Parsons had an incredible strip sack pretty early on and it really set the tone. Minnesota’s running game was stagnant, too, totalling just 73 yards. The Vikings scored their field goal in the first quarter and then did absolutely nothing from that point on.
The Cowboys mean business, people.
Winners and Losers
Tennessee Titans (7-3)
Las Vegas Raiders (3-7)
Atlanta Falcons (5-6)
Buffalo Bills (7-3)
Philadelphia Eagles (9-1)
New England Patriots (6-4)
New Orleans Saints (4-7)
Detroit Lions (4-6)
Baltimore Ravens (7-3)
Washington Commanders (6-5)
Dallas Cowboys (7-3)
Cincinnati Bengals (6-4)
Kansas City Chiefs (8-2)
San Francisco 49ers (6-4)
Green Bay Packers (4-7)
Denver Broncos (3-7)
Cleveland Browns (3-7)
Indianapolis Colts (4-6-1)
New York Jets (6-4)
Los Angeles Rams (3-7)
New York Giants (7-3)
Carolina Panthers (3-8)
Houston Texans (1-8-1)
Minnesota Vikings (8-2)
Pittsburgh Steelers (3-7)
Los Angeles Chargers (5-5)
Arizona Cardinals (4-7)
Teams on Bye
Miami Dolphins (7-3)
Seattle Seahawks (6-4)
Tampa Bay Buccaneers (5-5)
Jacksonville Jaguars (3-7)
Standout Individual Performers
Travis Kelce, Kansas City Chiefs
6 receptions on 10 targets for 115 receiving yards and 3 TD’s.
I already declared Travis Kelce the GOAT receiving tight end in this column, so he doesn’t need much more hype today, but he absolutely dominated this week and this is not a surprising stat line – which is insane – this is literally the second time this season that he’s scored 3 or more TD’s. 115 yards and 3 TD’s, have a day Kelce.
Patrick Mahomes, Kansas City Chiefs
59% completion rate, 329 passing yards and 3 TD’s.
Yes, his tight end stole the show, but Pat Mahomes still had to make the magic happen. He connected with 8 receivers in total and put up a very solid line of 329 passing yards and the 3 TD’s. The biggest key to this performance was the constant composure despite playing from behind. You’d be surprised how difficult it can be to make a comeback when you’re used to always winning! Mahomes never lets his success dampen his ability to deal with adversity.
Jimmy Garoppolo, San Francisco 49ers
69% completion rate, 228 passing yards and 4 TD’s.
This is a fun one. Last week the Niners had a nice win against the Chargers with a final score of 22-16. It was mentioned on the broadcast that Garoppolo has a knack for winning games without a single TD pass (this is the 10th if you don’t include games where he didn’t have double-digit pass attempts). My point is, everyone was talking about Jimmy winning without having to even do anything! This week he did the exact opposite, though. Garoppolo threw 4 TD’s, tying his career high, for just the fourth time in his career. He threw a pair to both George Kittle and Brandon Aiyuk, in a dominant win over a struggling Arizona. By the way, shoutout to Aiyuk who only caught two passes, both for scores. Jimmy just wanted to put on a show in Mexico city, I guess!
Demarcus Robinson, Baltimore Ravens
9 receptions on 9 targets for 128 receiving yards.
I think that sometimes it’s even more important to acknowledge a player for a great performance when they’re not one of the biggest names. Many people reading this right now only just discovered 5 seconds ago that Demarcus Robinson is a Baltimore Raven. That is because during his first season outside of Kansas City he has been somewhat quiet. As the rapport with Lamar Jackson builds, though, there is real potential here. This week, he caught all 9 of his targets and turned them into a very nice 128-yard performance. I am looking forward to seeing this partnership grow more, as Jackson with a true WR1 alongside Mark Andrews is a scary proposition.
Davante Adams, Las Vegas Raiders
7 receptions on 13 targets for 141 receiving yards and 2 TD’s including a walk-off OT game-winner.
Speaking of WR1’s, let’s talk about the last man standing in the Las Vegas receiver room. This man is just a machine – he is simply not guardable. In the Raiders’ dramatic OT win in Denver, Davante Adams was being regularly covered by one of the best young superstars at the defensive back position, Patrick Surtain II. He schooled him, going for a cool 141 receiving yards, while scoring twice. On the final play of the game, Adams absolutely decimated his ankles, when he set him up for a dig route and then snapped it back to the corner for a walk-in walk-off touchdown to win the game.
Tony Pollard, Dallas Cowboys
15 carries for 80 rushing yards, plus 6 receptions on 6 targets for 109 receiving yards and 2 TD’s.
If you’re a fantasy football player, this is a man you wish you picked this season. Ezekiel Elliott’s role in the Cowboys offense is an obstacle at this point. Just give the ball to Tony Pollard, please. This man is unbelievable. He can rush and catch in equal measure and his ability to make people miss is near-enough unmatched. This week he touched the ball just 21 times, with 15 rush attempts, while catching all 6 of his targets. He turned those touches into 189 scrimmage yards, with 80 on the ground and 109 coming through the air. Pollard also scored twice, both on receiving work, as he continues to build his case for a big contract move this offseason, when he becomes a free agent. This was a brilliant performance in a real statement win.
Tee Higgins, Cincinnati Bengals
9 receptions on 13 targets for 148 receiving yards.
The Bengals may have been facing a now 3-7 Steelers team this weekend, however this is a version of Cincinnati who just lost Ja’Marr Chase to an injury against a Pittsburgh team who just regained T.J Watt. That makes for a tough matchup. However, in the absence of the uber-talented young WR, this just made room for their hyper-talented young WR to step up. Tee Higgins absolutely dominated this game, helping Joe Burrow to survive without his usual favourite target. Higgins caught 9 of his 13 targets and turned them into 148 receiving yards.
Samaje Perine, Cincinnati Bengals
11 carries for 30 rushing yards, plus 4 receptions for 52 receiving yards and 3 receiving TD’s.
Who scored all the touchdowns though, Tyler? I hear you ask. Well, that would be Samaje Perine. This really was the week of whoever was second in the depth chart. Perine decided to just randomly go nuts this week, particularly in the redzone passing game. The Bengals just kept getting him the ball in and around the end zone and he delivered. He caught 4 receptions, and turned them into 52 receiving yards and a hat-trick. That’s pretty good efficiency for a running back slipping out of the backfield in their red zone offense.
Andy Dalton, New Orleans Saints
84% completion rate, 260 passing yards and 3 TD’s plus a Passer Rating of 149.6.
If you want to talk about someone who makes the best of the hand they’re dealt, ex-Bengal Andy Dalton deserves some love. This is a traditional quarterback who is seeing less time on the field and more pass-oriented defensive coverages to make way for a tight end / running back / ‘quarterback’ to get more reps. He handles himself like a true pro, though, and this week he excelled despite all the moving parts. Dalton threw the ball a very average 25 times, but had his best performance of the year. The Saints QB was able to connect on 21 of them (84%) for 260 passing yards and 3 TD’s. This landed him a nearly perfect passer rating of 149.6 and a 27-20 win against the defending Super Bowl champions.
Maxx Crosby, Las Vegas Raiders
6 combined tackles, 2.0 sacks and a blocked field goal.
I always like to hype up some of the defensive performances, but this week nobody went more crazy than the rest. We had a lot of good performances but no insane ones. I’m giving the top spot to Maxx Crosby of the Raiders, who got 2.0 sacks. Uniquely, Crosby’s most epic play(s) didn’t involve a sack. At the end of the first half, he stuffed Melvin Gordon as he attempted to rush in for a TD from just 2 yards out and knocked the ball loose, setting Denver back five yards. After this, he then immediately one-upped himself by blocking the subsequent field goal. Stop them scoring 6 and then stop them settling for 3 straight after. And in a game that eventually went to overtime. That is epic.
Stat Leaders Through Week 11
Passing Yards – Patrick Mahomes KC, 3265
Passing TD’s – Patrick Mahomes KC, 28
Rushing Yards – Derrick Henry TEN, 1010
Rushing TD’s – Jamaal Williams DET, 12
Receiving Yards – Tyreek Hill MIA, 1148
Receiving TD’s – Travis Kelce KC, 11
Total TD’s – Jamaal Williams DET, 12
Tackles (combined) – Zaire Franklin IND, 109
Sacks – Matt Judon NE, 13.0
Interceptions – C.J. Gardner-Johnson PHI, 6
Week 12 Preview – What to watch
It’s Thanksgiving ladies and gentlemen!!! That means 12 hours of NFL on a Thursday!
Buffalo Bills @ Detroit Lions, 5:30pm
New York Giants @ Dallas Cowboys, 9:30pm
New England Patriots @ Minnesota Vikings, 1:20am
Week 12 Best Games
Cincinnati Bengals @ Tennessee Titans
Las Vegas Raiders @ Seattle Seahawks
Green Bay Packers @ Philadelphia Eagles
Tyler’s Bold Week 12 Prediction
The Bills, Cowboys and Vikings will all win by 8+ points on Thanksgiving.
Week 12 Storylines
Buffalo get to play their second game in Detroit in a row, Bills @ Lions, 5:30pm Thursday
Dallas look to build more momentum after an incredible Week 11 performance. Giants @ Cowboys, 9:30pm Thursday
Can Minnesota bounce back after being demolished, against a team whose offense needed all 10 points to come from special teams last week? Patriots @ Vikings, TNF
Cleveland’s final game with Jacoby Brissett at the helm. Buccaneers @ Browns, 6pm
A top tier passing game vs a top tier running game, Bengals @ Titans, 6pm
Can the Jets recover from an absolutely terrible performance against a struggling Chicago? Bears @ Jets, 6pm
Someone has to win, right? Broncos @ Panthers, 6pm
After slamming the brakes on their tank, will Las Vegas gain some momentum? Raiders @ Seahawks, 9:05pm
What should be a Super Bowl-worthy matchup turns out to look like a foregone conclusion. Rams @ Chiefs, 9:25pm