Sunday NFL Liveblog: Titans, Bengals in a Playoff Rematch

Bengals WR Tee Higgins and Titans CB Roger McCreary
Bengals WR Tee Higgins and Titans CB Roger McCreary
Photo: USA Today Sports Images

NFL Week 12 - Get yourself a plate full of leftovers and settle down on the coach for 11 more hours of football!  Nothing quite like reheating a bunch of things you've probably been eating for the past 72 hours and sitting down to watch the undercard.

The NFL really did get a rather fortunate Thanksgiving day schedule this year -- five of the six teams that played on Thursday had winning records, including two matchups between teams above .500.  That does leave us with rather the dregs of the season, as we only have one match between winning teams today, with the Titans and Bengals going at it. Ah well. That doesn't mean there's no intrigue to be had, just that we have to dig a little deeper into our bag and maybe slather some cranberry sauce on some of these games to make them a little more palatable.  We shall, as always make do.

And, because we're live, you can participate in the discussion as well! Join in on the conversation -- either in the comment section in this article, on Twitter by tagging @FBOutsiders or @BryKno (assuming Twitter survives into gametime), or on our brand new Discord server, where some of your favorite writers will be hanging out and reacting live. Questions, comments, and particularly clever quips will find their way into the liveblog proper as we have a running conversation throughout gameday. 

We've got 11 games for you during the liveblog window -- no bye weeks this week, to make up for the three games lost to Thursday. Today's slate includes:

Early Window

  • Cincinnati Bengals (-2) @ Tennessee Titans
  • Denver Broncos (-2) @ Carolina Panthers
  • Tampa Bay Buccaneers (-3.5) @ Cleveland Browns
  • Baltimore Ravens (-4) @ Jacksonville Jaguars
  • Houston Texans (+13.5) @ Miami Dolphins
  • Chicago Bears (+6) @ New York Jets
  • Atlanta Falcons (+4.5) @ Washington Commanders

Late Window

  • Las Vegas Raiders (+3.5) @ Seattle Seahawks
  • Los Angeles Chargers (-3) @ Arizona Cardinals
  • New Orleans Saints (+9.5) @ San Francisco 49ers
  • Los Angeles Rams (+14.5) @ Kansas City Chiefs

The nightcap is the Green Bay Packers taking on the Philadelphia Eagles -- not a super-competitive game on paper, but a crucial one for Philadelphia as they try to lock up both the division and seeding requirements. We'll be switching to the FO Discord server for the late game, but until then, let the games begin!

Saturday Evening: Early Window Storylines

No better place to start than when the Titans-Bengals game, a rematch of Cincinnati's 19-16 win in last year's divisional playoffs. The Titans have made it clear that they do not consider this a revenge game. They've made that point multiple times. Quite frequently, as a matter of fact, to the point where you wonder if someone doth protest too much. It is true that many of the players on both sides weren't here for that game due to roster turnover, but Ryan Tannehill has also said that the loss to Cincinnati last year left a "deep scar" and a lot of sleepless nights, in part due to his own poor performance in that game. He'll sleep a little better if his team plays a little better in this one. The Bengals, meanwhile, are sleeping a little worse because Ja'Marr Chase still isn't returning for this one, despite practicing this week.

The Ravens-Jaguars game has some quarterback intrigue. Lamar Jackson will play, but he missed several practices this week with hip injuries suffered in last week's win over the Panthers. If Jackson isn't at full strength, that does leave the Ravens open to possible upset. Carolina couldn't pull that off, but they're not a good football team. The Jaguars aren't exactly great, but they're on pace for their best DVOA since the #Sacksonville year, and have the best point differential in their division. If the Ravens offense sputters around for much of the game this week like it did last, Jacksonville could absolutely pull off a significant upset here.  Keep an eye on this one, at least for a quarter, until we see how Jackson looks.

The Buccaneers return from their German trip rested, ready and rejuvenated. Their win over Seattle two weeks ago was their best game since the season opener, and they're ready to prove that they're still the Buccaneers and are ready for a run in the postseason -- it's not how you start, it's how you finish, after all. In their way are the Cleveland Browns, in what will likely be Jacoby Brissett's last game of the season. Brissett is having the best season of his career, currently ranked fifth in both passing DYAR and DVOA. If Cleveland had anything resembling a functioning defense, we'd be talking about Brissett alongside Geno Smith when it comes to longtime backups being rejuvenated in 2022. Brissett has been toiling away on a team going nowhere, but make no mistake that teams have been watching. Brissett is a free agent after the season, and he's played himself into at least a chance at a starting job for someone -- perhaps as a bridge quarterback for a team developing a rookie. The most hilarious outcome might be returning to Indianapolis if the Colts move on from Matt Ryan, so that's what the liveblog is rooting for. 

Elsewhere, the Commanders continue their playoff push against a Falcons team that's not entirely out of the picture themselves; the Jets and Bears turned their potential Zach Wilson-Justin Fields showdown into a backup quarterback snoozefest; the Panthers and Broncos battle in a match of two teams who have long since passed irrelevancy, and the Dolphins check to see if their scoreboard can go up to triple digits against the Texans.

Saturday Evening: Playoffs?!?!

We're still clearing out the deadwood from the bottom of the playoff picture, but clearing things out is important -- it's nice to occasionally go from "essentially no chance" to "mathematically no chance" as the season progresses.

We entered Thanksgiving with the Chicago Bears being the only team eliminated from any potential seed, and they became the first team eliminated from their division race when the Vikings won on Turkey Day; they can still be knocked out of the fifth seed with a loss to the Jets.  The other team that could be knocked out of their divisional race today is the Houston Texans, who will fall if they lose to the Dolphins and the Titans handle the Bengals. Somehow, I suspect Cincinnati might have more to say about their fate than the Texans themselves. Both teams currently have a 0.0% chance to win their division, per our odds, so this isn't exactly breaking news, but you have to start somewhere.

Also at 0.0%?  The combined odds of the Packers, Cardinals, Rams, Saints, Panthers, Jaguars, and Steelers of winning the top seed, bye week and home field advantage in their various conferences. But all are still alive at the moment, and all could get officially knocked out this week with a little hard luck, with varying definitions of "little".    The Raiders, Broncos and Browns, meanwhile, got delivered a one-week stay of execution after the Patriots fell on Thursday.

Still nothing to be too concerned about if you're interested in things that have any sort of real chance of happening, but if you're keeping an eye on the race to be the first team fully eliminated from the postseason, we're getting close...

Saturday Evening: Why, Eagles Why?

While their game won't be covered by the blog because it's in the night slot, the Eagles are becoming the latest team to debut an alternate helmet -- their all-black look.

I'm generally against teams going all-black for no real reason, and I've disliked the Eagles' black jersey for the 20 years it has existed. I recognize that puts me in the minority there, but still.

The black helmet? It looks alright, actually, but that's because it's just the same as their standard dark-green helmet, only darker -- a dark-green helmet which, I should say, already looks almost black when worn with the black jersey at night.

It is believed that this will be a one-off; a temporary placeholder for the Kelly green throwback helmet they will debut next season, that was delayed due to supply chain issues. I'd rather they have just not bothered with anything this year, but at least we know they're going to like amazing next season.

11:10 AM: Buccaneers at Browns

So, there's a minor field issue in Cleveland.

On Tuesday, someone jumped the fence at the stadium, stole a golf cart, and spent some time doing donuts on the playing field. The Browns described the damage as "superficial", and said that it should be fixed by gametime. Well, it's Sunday and, uh, the grooves are still there. The league says it's not a playability or safety issue, so everything should be fine, but it is kind of an embarrassing look.

11:38 AM: Early Window Inactives

The biggest inactives in the early window are the starting quarterbacks in the Bears-Jets clash, but we knew that Justin Fields and Zach Wilson wouldn't be starting today.  Wilson, somewhat surprisingly, is joined by James Robinson, as that trade has just gone super-well for New York.

We also have both Ja'Marr Chase and Chase Young inactive, their returns delayed by another week.  Ja'Marr still is coming back from his hip injury and just needs another week or two to get out there at full speed.  Young still hasn't made his season debut with a knee injury, though they're blaming an illness for his absence this week.

Other big names out in the early window: Jerry Jeudy, Raheem Mostert, Leonard Fournette, Joe Mixon, Kyle Hamilton and Darrell Henderson.

12:21 PM: Bears at Jets

Disaster for the Bears already. Trevor Siemian has strained an oblique in warmups, and will not be starting. It's the Nathan Peterman show!

Peterman has a career ANY/A of 0.26, the worst number for any quarterback with at least 100 attempts since the 1990s.

12:32 PM: Bears at Jets

David Montgomery, running back, is the backup quarterback for the Bears today. Which makes sense, as you want an offensive player there, but that is the most boring option.

More fun options?

  • Rookie defensive end Dominique Robinson was a quarterback in high school, and was recruited to Miami (OH) as a quarterback/athlete.  He then switched to receiver before ending up at edge rusher, but he probably remembers a thing or two about how to handle a snap.
  • Backup tight end Trevon Wesco was also a quarterback in high school and had a pass attempt at West Virginia (it fell incomplete).
  • Chase Claypool completed a pass earlier this season for the Steelers

But no, go with Montgomery, I guess that's fine.

1:02 PM: Bears at Jets

It looks like Trevor Siemian is pulling a Willis Reed, and has come out of the locker room to start this one.  To which I can only give a loud round of boos.

1:09 PM: Buccaneers at Browns

A little bit of trickery to open the game for Cleveland! A reverse to Anthony Schwartz became a 31-yard touchdown, which is fun in and of itself.  But we also had an absolute pancake by Jacoby Brissett downfield to help spring Schwartz!

7-0 Browns, early in the first.

1:11 PM: Bears at Jets

Mike White went 6-for-7 passing on his opening drive. It helps, of course, that the Bears have two starters out in the secondary due to concussion protocol, but the all-black White Jets marched down the field without any real sort of obstruction.  White hit Garrett Wilson for the touchdown to cap things off.

Cale Clinton: So THIS is what the Jets offense with league-average quarterback play looks like? Jets average 8.33 yards per play, with White finishing 6-for-7 for 69 yards and a touchdown. Not exactly testing downfield, don’t think he had a single pass beyond the sticks, but hey that’s how he beat the Bengals in ‘21. Death by a thousand cuts, leaning heavily into short-yardage passing and screens.

1:18 PM: Falcons at Commanders

Carl Yedor: We've got a lot of crummy weather up and down the east coast. I wouldn't be surprised if Atlanta attempts less than 20 passes here in DC given their proclivity to take the ball out of Mariota's hands

It would help the Falcons' chances of doing that if they could stop the Commanders, but tackling Brian Robinson seems like it's not high on their list of priorities today.

7-3 Commanders, late in the first.

1:19 PM: Buccaneers at Browns

Cale Clinton: Is the Browns run defense this bad, or were the Buccaneers just weeks late on turning to Rachaad White?

It's a little of column A, a little of column B.  The Browns are the 32nd rushing defense at 11.4%; the Buccaneers are 30th in rushing offense.  The stoppable force versus the movable object.

Oh, but Tom Brady is still pretty good.

Buccaneers tie it back up at seven.

1:27 PM: Texas at Dolphins

This one might get over pretty quickly. The Dolphins were held to a field goal on their first drive, but the Texans have a total of three yards on their first two attempts. The Dolphins' second drive marched right down the field -- though it did require going for it on 4th-and-1, going empty set but managing to convert. That meant Miami stayed on the field, and Tua Tagovailoa, forced to improvise, found Durham Smythe for the score.

Nifty footwork for Tua there; a great job of keeping the play alive.  10-0 Dolphins in what does not look like a fair fight.

1:31 PM: Broncos at Panthers

Here's something you don't hear every day: what a pretty pass from Sam Darnold.

Darnold, back in the starting lineup due to injuries and ineffectiveness elsewhere, is only 5-for-8 for 54 yards, but that was a pretty ball to DJ Moore.  And it gives Carolina a 7-0 lead as we hit the end of the first quarter.

Vince Verhei: Panthers offense got off to a slow start, with a pair of quick punts on their first two drives. Third drive looks like more of the same, but they convert a fourth-and-1 on a fake punt, and that seems to wake them up. DJ Moore gets open down the sideline for a 26-yard gain, D’Onta Foreman bursts up the middle for a gain of 15, and eventually Sam Darnold finds Moore going right-to-left in the back of the end zone for the score. Panthers lead 7-0.

1:39 PM: Bears at Jets

Trevor Siemian is fighting through his bad oblique, so of course we have a shootout developing in New York.  Both Simeian and Mike White are 7-for-9 with a touchdown, though Siemian has 120 yards to White's 75.  His touchdown was, uh, perhaps not the most-advised throw in the history of the league, but whatever works, right?

That is Byron Pringle's first touchdown in a Bears uniform, and the rest of the league better watch out.  For once you pop, you can not stop.

...Sorry.

1:45 PM: Thoughts from the Outsiders

Aaron Schatz: Derrik wrote in Film Room this week about how the Bengals last week discovered that they could throw to the middle of the field to expand their offense. Somebody needs to remind them of this today. TEN-CIN is scoreless after the first quarter. Defenses are playing very well, Titans in particular swarming to the ball. Tannehill and Burrow both inaccurate, with passes overthrown and batted down. Tannehill just had finally the first good deep throw of the game up the seam to Nick Westbrook-Ikhine on third down to convert.

Tennessee did add a field goal, so it's 3-0 Titans in what hasn't exactly been a barn burner.

Vincent Verhei: Russell Wilson still throws some of the prettiest deep balls in the league. At the end of the first quarter against Carolina, he’s 4-of-5, but for only 10 yards and no first downs. Square peg, meet round hole.

The Broncos recovered a Panthers muffed punt at the 27, and couldn't do anything with it.  The field goal does cut the lead to 7-3, Panthers.  Broncos still in play for fewest points scored and allowed...

1:47 PM: Falcons at Commanders

Cale Clinton: MyCole Pruitt officially has as many touchdowns as Kyle Pitts this season

Hey, you take what you can get, right?  Falcons retake the lead, 10-7.

Vince Verhei: Falcons get an 11-play, 77-yard touchdown drive to take the lead. Marcus Mariota, Caleb Huntley, Tyler Allgeier, and Cordarrelle Patterson each had a 10-yard run on the drive, and Drake London had a big catch to turn a second-and-25 into a third-and-3 (which Patterson then converted). All that running, then the Commanders forget to cover MyCole Pruitt in the end zone. Atlanta leads 10-7.

1:51 PM: Texans at Dolphins

Kyle Allen, what are you doing.

The Dolphins turn this into points, they go up 17-0, and this one is over before we get three minutes into the second quarter.  I guess we'll check back in if we get on NormWatch, but this hasn't been a fair fight.

1:53 PM: Bears at Jets

I'm just going to let this play.

The eventual ruling is that the Jets tried a forward pass in that mess, and thus the play was over before the Bears could fumble it back to them.  Whoof.

1:58 PM: Bengals at Titans

Tackling Derrick Henry does not look fun. But catching him from behind? That might be an option.

I think fantasy managers will be satisfied with the long gain, but the touchdown is vultured by Treylon Burks.  Titans will take it!  10-3, early in the second.

2:01 PM: Bears at Jets

The shootout continues!  Mike White is 12-for-16 for 198 yards and two touchdowns, with a couple of the longest gains this season for the Jets.  That seat getting a little more comfortable for Zach Wilson as we speak.

But this play is probably more Eddie Jackson getting hurt than anything else, which is more trouble for the Bears.

Jets retake the lead, 14-10.

2:11 PM: Broncos at Panthers

Vince Verhei: Good news for Denver! Latavius Murray busts through the middle for a 50-plus-yard run! Bad news for Denver! Brian Burns gets a hand on the ball and knocks it out of Russell Wilson’s hand. It looks like an incompletion, but it’s ruled a sack-fumble, and Panthers recover.

The Broncos came into today averaging 22.2 yards per point.  That might be a historic-level record; I'll have to check that this week.  Either way, the fewest points scored and allowed double remains a realistic dream...

2:18 PM: Bengals at Titans

We're back to 10 all now, as the Bengals just pulled off their first successful drive of the game, a 92-yard march in nine plays.  It was started and ended by Samije Perine -- a 32-yard gain on the first play to get Cincinnati out of the shadow of their own goalposts, and then a rush to the right to find the end zone eight plays later.

The Bengals have only really allowed the one big play to Henry, but that's enough to keep things knotted for now as we pass the two-minute warning. 

Aaron Schatz: Bengals finally get their offense going with underneath passes to running backs, especially Burrow guiding Traveon Williams to get open on a third-and-12 where he gained 24 yards. Perine ran it in for 7 yards and a touchdown, 10-10.

2:21 PM: Ravens at Jaguars

This game started late due to thunder in the area, and the Ravens have bogged down.  They're significantly ourgaining the Jaguars, but they've had to settle for field goals twice in the red zone, they've lost a fumble, and they've been stuffed on fourth down.  At least the Jaguars aren't doing much, but...

So, uh, Jacksonville has a 7-6 lead, midway through the second quarter.  Like we all predicted.

2:24 PM: Bears at Jets

Cale Clinton: Announcers just highlighted undrafted rookie Jack Sanborn on the Bears defense. Impressive emergence since Chicago moved Roquan Smith and Robert Quinn out of town. Was almost exclusively a special Teamer prior to the Dallas Cowboys game. In the last three games, he’s racked up 28 total tackles, including a 12-tackle, 2-sack performance in the loss to Detroit. Already has 11 combined tackles and a tackle for loss in one half against the Jets. These are the kinds of players Chicago needs to hit on during their rebuild.

2:25 PM: Buccaneers at Browns

Vince Verhei: In Cleveland, Jacoby Brissett’s Hail Mary on the last play of the half is intercepted, and the Bucs are very fortunate to go into halftime tied 10-10. Since their impressive opening drive, they have only two first downs, and one of those required Tom Brady to convert a fourth-and-1 with a QB sneak. But the Browns keep moving into Tampa Bay territory, but failing to score touchdowns. They had a first down in the red zone but moved backwards, then missed a field goal. This game remains very much winnable for both teams.

2:29 PM: Broncos at Panthers

Vince Verhei: Courtland Sutton gets open on a deep comeback for a 22-yard gain to give Brandon McManus a shot, but the 56-yard field goal try is no good, and Panthers lead 10-3 at halftime. Wilson is up to 53 yards on nine completions, 11 yards lost on a pair of sacks, and that fumble. If they can’t pick things up in the second half, at least a little, that has to be it for Hackett, right?

Pride of UC Davis, Nathaniel Hackett, is not looking ideal.

2:39 PM: Ravens at Jaguars

The Ravens have to settle for another field goal, now up 9-7, and people are getting restless.

And the Jaguars are driving again...

2:49 PM: Buccaneers at Browns

I'm a professional football writer, so of course I've heard of Ko Kieft. How dare...how dare you suggest otherwise? He's a, uh, professional football player.  Of some description.

(Kieft is a sixth-round H-Back type, in at fullback on this play.  And so the Bucs have a 17-10 lead).

2:52 PM: Broncos at Panthers

We praised Sam Darnold for looking good earlier today.  This one, uh, isn't so good, but hey, recovering your own fumble for a score counts the same as all the others.

That's a 17-3 Carolina lead right now; Denver might be down to the last drive of the Hackett era, at least from a competitive point of view.

Cale Clinton: Imagine being told before the season that, in the Denver-Carolina game, not only would the Panthers be leading the Broncos, but Sam Darnold would be out-gaining Russell Wilson (104 passing yards to Wilson’s 61). A passing touchdown and now a rushing touchdown in Darnold’s first start of the season

2:54 PM: Falcons at Commanders

There have been three drives in this game of at least 59 yards; all belong to Washington, and it's how they've gotten all 16 of their points -- Atlanta is, at least, making them go up and down the field?

Heinicke hits Bates for the touchdown, but the extra point is no good, so it's a 16-10 Commanders lead.

Vince Verhei: Washington gets perhaps the most small-ball scoring drive of the season. Eleven plays gain—in this order—5, 6, 7, 2, 0, 3, 5, 6, 9, 1, and 16 yards, the last a scoring strike to tight end John Bates. Joey Slye misses the extra point, but Washington still leads 16-10.

3:00 PM: Bears at Jets

Mike. White.

18-for-23 for 259 yards and three touchdowns, as White is leaving the Jets in the dust.  It looks like New York has found their quarterback for the rest of the season, which is a scathing indictment of the Zach Wilson era. It IS just the Bears, and they ARE banged up in the secondary, so several massive grains of salt. But this Jets offense looks entirely different today.  Game's not over at 24-10, but the Bears need to get things going immediately.

Cale Clinton: Mike White at QB really was a two-birds, one-stone kind of fix. Not only are the Jets on pace for the most passing yards of their season, but formerly-disgruntled WR Elijah Moore already has his best game of this season on just two catches. Highest yardage total of the year AND his first touchdown since Week 12 of last year

3:11 PM: Bears at Jets

Oh, I said that wasn't game?  Uh, it's game now. 

31-10.  The Jets look good, but even more than that, the Bears look like a disaster. Kind of puts the "oh, Justin Fields isn't winning" narrative where it belongs; keeping this Bears defense in games requires herculean efforts.

Cale Clinton: Ty Johnson is an angry runner, it’s so fun to watch. When he was the RB2 last year, he was a great short-yardage option because he would manage to fall forward no matter how many bodies were on him. That run, initial contact was made behind the LOS, then again 2 yards deep. Johnson broke three total tackles on the run. Great find in the sixth round for NYJ

3:23 PM: Bad Quarterback Watch

Vince Verhei: At the end of their respective third quarters, Kyle Allen and the Houston Texans have passed for more first downs (six) than Russell Wilson and the Denver Broncos (four).

The Texans have just scored to reduce the Dolphins' lead to 30-13, though this one is still a blowout. The Broncos are down 20-3, and you can probably stick a fork in them, as well.

3:31 PM: Bengals at Titans

Tee Higgins against rookie Roger McCreary may be a mismatch.

This game hasn't been as explosive as perhaps we were hoping, but the Bengals now have a 20-13 lead early in the fourth, and the tension is rising.

3:42 PM: Falcons at Commanders

Vince Verhei: Mariota under pressure, slips and goes down to a knee, but gets up before he’s touched and he finds Olamide Zaccheaus for a 44-yard gain. That’s five catches for 90 yards for Zaccheaus today. Falcons trail 19-13, now have a third-and-3 at the Washington 22 at the two-minute warning.

From there, they moved the ball into the red zone, picking up a new set of downs on penalty. They have first and goal inside the five with a minute and change left, trailing by six...

3:44 PM: Falcons at Commanders

Oh, but no!  On second down, Mariota's pick is tipped and intercepted; Washington ball with less than a minute left!  Not quite game, as Atlanta has timeouts, but that might well be a game-winning pick.

Goodness. And on Sean Taylor Mannequin day, to boot.

3:50 PM: Buccaneers at Browns

We have a tie with 32 seconds left!  The Buccaneers, on their last drive, wasted just 25 seconds on the clock on a three and out.  That gave Jacoby Brissett and the Browns 2:10 to go half the field for a score, and Brissett found David Njoku in the waning seconds to tie us at 17!

We'll see if Tom Brady can respond...

3:53 PM: Broncos at Panthers

Vince Verhei: To summarize, the Broncos just had:

  • one touchdown waved off because receiver was down by contact
  • another touchdown waved off because the receiver was out of bounds.
  • a third pass that should have been a touchdown, but was dropped in the end zone.
  • a delay of game on fourth-and-goal

But then there's roughing!

Vince Verhei: I missed the first-down play, but the second-down pass was dropped, and then on third down, their 400th straight snap in the end zone, somebody named Brandon Johnson finally scores a touchdown. That was breathtaking.

3:55 PM: Ravens at Jaguars

I had a whole joke about "wait, what happens when the Ravens move the ball into the end zone?" joke, but a replay and some delay ruined the timing of it.  We'll just note that the Ravens have, in fact scored now, and they have a 19-10 lead.

Not over!  Remember, this game was delayed by weather.

3:59 PM: Bengals at Titans

This one ends not with a bang, but a whimper.

Aaron Schatz: Bengals lose when one of their defenders on special teams shoves the long snapper, who is technically, apparently, a "defenseless player."

Can't blast the center.  That gives the Bengals a new set of downs, and they kneel the clock out.  Cincinnati wins!

4:07 PM: Ravens at Jaguars

Well, things aren't over here just yet,  The Jaguars march 75 yards in 14 plays, draining half a quarter.  That's probably better if you're winning rather than down two scores, but do what it takes to find the end zone.

The lead has been cut to 19-17 with 5:55 left.  Time for a long Ravens drive?

4:09 PM: Raiders at Seahawks

The first play from scrimmage?  A Derek Carr interception; a great pick by Diggs.

That turns into points very quickly, and the Seahawks take a 7-0 lead within a minute.

4:14 PM: Ravens at Jaguars

Disaster for the Ravens -- a bad kickoff return pins them deep, and Gus Edwards fumbles the ball inside the 25.  The Ravens defense stiffens up, but the Jags still make a go-ahead field goal.

At least the Ravens don't need a touchdown, right?

4:22 PM: Ravens at Jaguars

DeSean Jackson, in the year of our lord 2022?  Amazing.

The Ravens get into the end zone AND complete the two-point conversion to go up 27-20, eating up two Jaguars timeouts in the process.  And the ensuing kickoff might take care of the two-minute warning, too!  Not game yet, but a huge play when they had to have one.

4:24 PM: Raiders at Seahawks

Derek Carr had to leave the game with a rib injury, but quickly came back in.  He looks fine!

The extra point ties us at seven, before the early games finish!

4:25 PM: Buccaneers at Browns

Cale Clinton: Myles Garrett has single-handedly kept the Browns alive in this OT. An impactful drawn hands to the face, a pressure forcing the incompletion on third-and-long, then a third-down sack the next drive.

The other notable thing that's happened in OT so far has been Tristin Wirfs, carted off with an air cast.  That is a huge loss for Tampa Bay.

In more positive news, Amari Cooper!

Chubb punches it in a few plays later, and the Browns win, 23-17!

4:28 PM: Late Game Headlines

The most interesting game of the late window is the Seahawks and the Raiders. Seattle returns home after their trip to Germany didn't go so hot, and they're looking to get right against a struggling Raiders team. Seattle saw their NFC West lead evaporate since the last time they played in North America, and need to get back on track to keep up with the suddenly hot 49ers. There are worse matchups to get than a Las Vegas team which has been underperforming all year long, but they'll have to shut down Josh Jacobs. Jacobs has been one of the few bright spots for the Raiders this year, leading the league in rushing DYAR and third in DVOA. And remember, the Raiders opted not to use their fifth-year option on Jacobs this last offseason, and there were rumors he might be cut outright. Maybe Jacobs is running with just a little chip on his shoulder.

Elsewhere, the 49ers are also returning to North America, taking on the Saints as they try to keep up with the Seahawks; the Rams go without injured quarterback Matthew Stafford in a matchup against the Chiefs which looked a lot better three months ago, and the Cardinals and Chargers meet in a matchup of the two teams linked to Sean Payton rumors earlier this week.  Loser gets a new coach?

4:30 PM: Chargers at Cardinals

A sight for sore eyes for Arizona, as Kyler Murray returns to action. So far today, he's 6-for-6 for 71 yards and this score to DeAndre Hopkins.

Cardinals take a 7-0 lead late in the first quarter.

4:34 PM: Ravens at Jaguars

Despite the Discord server dunking on him repeatedly, Trevor Lawrence marches the Jags right down the field with no time-outs!  He hits a few big plays, and finally Marvin Jones for this score!

That WOULD be the game-tying score, but they're going for two and the win, instead...

AND IT'S GOOD!  Jaguars are going to pull off the upset!  Goodness!

4:49 PM: Ravens at Jaguars

Baltimore got in range for Justin Tucker to attempt a 67-yard gamewinner, and it says something about Tucker that we all thought this was a real chance.  Tucker's kick was on line, but a few yards short, and the Jaguars complete the upset.  Wow.

Cale Clinton: The fact that Jackson had to settle for a Josh Oliver checkdown with the game on the line is such a disservice to Jackson. I feel like the one place the Ravens have really let Lamar down is in the pass-catcher department. Landing Andrews is huge, sure, and I get Rashod Bateman is hurt, but having such a talented quarterback and surrounding him with Devin Duvernay, 35-year-old DeSean Jackson, and DeMarcus Robinson feels criminal

4:51 PM: Rams at Chiefs

Cale Clinton: Fascinating Mahomes stat from the broadcast: from 2018-2021, Mahomes had 44 passing touchdowns of 20+ air yards. This season, he only has one.

That's what happens when you lose Tyreek Hill. Fortunately, Mahomes has learned a thing or two to make up for that. It's not always as easy as "throw it to Travis Kelce" but, uh, sometimes it is that easy.

7-0 Chiefs, midway through the first.

5:03 PM: Chargers at Cardinals

It took a quarter and a half, but the Chargers decided to show up to this game.  They're averaging just 4.0 yards per play, with a few big sacks ending early drives. But they just got off the starting blocks, marching 75 yards in 11 plays before Justin Hebert found Keenan Allen for an easy pitch and catch touchdown.

Still 10-7 Cardinals, midway through the second quarter.

5:06 PM: Raiders at Seahawks

Flea flicker!

That was nearly a disaster, but Mack Hollins ends up entirely uncovered, and the Raiders take the lead!

Vince Verhei: It’s after Thanksgiving and the Seahawks are still sorting out their cornerback depth chart, with Tre Brown and Michael Jackson rotating at one spot. On that note, the Raiders go flea-flicker, Jackson is completely fooled, and Mack Hollins is wide open for a long touchdown.

5:14 PM: Chargers at Cardinals

The Cardinals no longer have the lead, as Justin Herbert would like to remind you that he is, in fact, very very good.

DeAndre Carter comes down with it, and the Chargers are now up 14-10

5:15 PM: Raiders at Seahawks

Geno Smith has been flirting with interceptions all day long, and they finally bit him.

The Raiders turn that into a score -- the first time they've hit 21 points in regulation since Week 7.  It's 21-13, Seattle, midway through the second.

5:21 PM: Raiders at Seahawks

Tyler Lockett turns out the gas to burn Rock Ya-Sin, and that's all Geno Smith needs.

Perfectly thrown pass, and the Seahawks cut the lead to 21-20.  We've got a shootout in the PNW!

5:35 PM: Chargers at Cardinals

You can't just let Kyler Murray dance around in the pocket. He will take off, and if you don't have a spy already in place, he is going to score.

Cardinals retake the lead, 17-14.

Vince Verhei: Cardinals get a late touchdown scamper from Kyler Murray to take a 17-14 halftime lead. Chargers are probably lucky to be that close. There are two fumbles in this game, one by each team, and L.A. has recovered both of them — one of them ruled an Arizona recovery on the field, reversed on replay, and the Chargers went on to score their first touchdown on that drive. Justin Herbert is playing well, but L.A. has hardly run at all. Herbert has three carries for 15 yards (including a kneeldown), his teammates have a combined five carries for 8 yards. As for the Cards, they have the Murray touchdown run, a 33-yard DeAndre Hopkins catch-and-run score where he pin balled off some defenders, and a field goal set up by a good Pharoh Cooper punt return.

5:50 PM: Saints at 49ers

We haven't been on this game much, as the 49ers look jetlagged after flying back from Mexico on a short week, and the Saints look like, well, the Saints.

But this last drive of the first half was bonkers.  It featured a massive volleyball spike from Kyle Juszcyzk to prevent an interception, a questionable holding call which called back a long Elijah Mitchell touchdown, a completion from Jimmy G when he was busy being suplexed to the ground, a late hit way, way out of bounds, and then this tip-drill touchdown.

It's a 10-0 lead for the 49ers.  We'll take this drive, put it in a box, and never speak of it again.

5:54 PM: Rams at Chiefs

Aaron Schatz: This 13-3 KC lead is an example of why DVOA can't trust Kansas City as the best team in the league. They should be PUMMELING this Rams team, considering they are starting a third-string QB and are missing their top two receivers. Although I guess the Chiefs have outgained the Rams by like 200 yards, so they might be pummeling them and just having terrible luck in the red zone.

It's a little of column A, a little of column B; the Chiefs should be winning by more both based on how they've actually been playing and how they should be playing. They do seem well on their way to a win, though.

6:00 PM: Raiders at Seahawks

Kenneth Walker, doing his best Beastquake impression here.  Just pushing everyone, and I mean everyone, forward.  There's angry runs, and then there's THAT.

Seahawks retake the lead, 27-24 as we go back and forth and back and forth.

6:15 PM: Raiders at Seahawks

Vince Verhei: BOO, JOSH McDANIELS. Raiders quickly get to the red zone, mostly on the ground (three 10-yard rounds — one by Jacobs, two by Zamir White), but then they kick the field goal on fourth-and-1 to tie the game at 27-all.  Also, it appears the Seahawks defense that was playing so well for a month or so there was a mirage. Second straight game opponents have run all over them.

6:21 PM: Rams at Chiefs

The Chiefs aren't doing anything super-exciting or amazing; they're just relying on their superior quality across the board to just press the Rams into submission.  Hey, if it works, right?  Mahomes is up to 257 passing yards; the Rams have 22. That seems less than ideal. They're also outgaining the Rams on the ground, averaging 5.4 yards per rush to the Rams' 3.9.  It's not a blowout; it's just a very simple, easy victory.

The Rams have negative net passing yards, which we'll keep an eye on, but that's about it in this one.

6:25 PM: Chargers at Cardinals

Khalil Mack is a great player, but this one won't be on his highlight reel, as he bounces off of James Conner.

Cardinals retake the lead, 24-17, in what's becoming a very back-and-forth affair.  A couple entertaining games this late window!

Vince Verhei: Nice drive by Arizona and Kyler Murray breaks a tackle by Kenneth Murray (no relation) (as far as I know) to hit James Conner for a touchdown that puts Arizona ahead 24-17 early in the fourth. Today is the first time the Cardinals have had DeAndre Hopkins and Marquise Brown in the same game, and the difference is significant—they have combined for 13 targets, nine catches, 129 yards, and a touchdown.

6:37 PM: Raiders at Seahawks

Vince Verhei: Marquise Goodwin takes a big hit but hangs on for a big game and a first down. Of all the surprising things about Seattle in 2022, Goodwin emerging as a viable third wideout is way up there. And then Kenneth Walker runs for a loss of 13 (not a typo). And then Geno converts second-and-23 with a deep ball to Travis Homer. This game got quiet for most of the third quarter but it’s lively now.

And, all of a sudden, things are livelier -- the Seahawks botch a handoff, lose the ball, and the Raiders fall on top of it.  Still tied at 27.

6:52 PM: Raiders at Seahawks

Vince Verhei: I’d like to point out that the Raiders turned down a chance to go for it on fourth-and-1 in the red zone, but opted to go for it with the score tied, on their own side of the 50.

In addition, the go-play was a slow, slow developing sweep to the outside.

A weird choice, and we're still tied at 27.

6:54 PM: Raiders at Seahawks

...Or we were!  Seattle turns the fourth-down stop into points!

That's Travis Homer for the score, and a huge swing in Seattle's favor.  34-27 Seattle with 5:37 left.

7:00 PM: Chargers at Cardinals

Vince Verhei: As we all expected, the Chargers-Cardinals game it doing to be decided by pass rush. Cards get a sack to set up a fourth-and-20 and force the Chargers to punt, down 24-17 with less than three minutes to go. But then the Chargers sack Kyler Murray on second down, forcing a third-and-long give-up draw, and the Cards are going to punt the ball back to Herbert at the two-minute warning.

7:07 PM: Raiders at Seahawks

Vince Verhei: Huge break for the Raiders. Josh Jacobs appears to fumble in the red zone, but it’s ruled that his forward progress was stopped. Judgment call, not reviewable, Raiders retain.

That keeps the Raiders drive alive, and Derek Carr hits a beautiful little toss to Foster Moreau in the back of the end zone, and we're tied with two minutes left.

Seattle has never played a normal game.

7:09 PM: Chargers at Cardinals

Justin Herbert takes the Chargers right down the field, scoring with 12 seconds left in the game.

The extra point would tie it, but the Chargers are going for the win... welcome back Brandon Staley...

It's good!  The Chargers take a lead with seconds left!

7:26 PM: Raiders at Seahawks

We're going to overtime in the most hectic game of the week.  The Raiders opted to run out clock with multiple timeouts left, and so we get bonus football!  I'm sure nothing crazy will happen!

7:31 PM: Raiders at Seahawks

Does missing a 56-yard field goal wide right count as crazy?  What about one on a dodgy snap?

Raiders miss the field goal, and so the Seahawks get the ball needing just a field goal to win.

Vince Verhei: … did the Raiders really just try a 56-yard field goal on fourth-and-2 in overtime? When even a successful kick would give Seattle the ball back and a chance to win?

They sure did, Vince!  They sure did.

7:46 PM: Raiders at Seahawks

But Seattle does a super-quick three-and-out, and has to punt right back to the Raiders.  We start making a ton of tie jokes in the chat...

But no!  Josh Jacobs says he wants to win, thank you very much.

Raiders 40. Seahawks 34. An old school AFC Track Meet.  303 yards for Josh Jacobs.  Wow.

And that will do it for us!  We're going to the Discord for the night game, because we need to catch our breath.  What a finish!

Comments

32 comments, Last at 28 Nov 2022, 10:20pm

#1 by BlueStarDude // Nov 27, 2022 - 7:41am

In the NY area, here is the slate of afternoon games for today:

1 pm: Chicago @ NY Jets

4 pm: LA Chargers @ Arizona

4 pm: LA Rams @ Kansas City

Points: 0

#2 by mathesond // Nov 27, 2022 - 9:21am

Is backing up Trevor Siemian today. I had no idea either was on the Bears roster.

Points: 0

#6 by Chuckc // Nov 27, 2022 - 12:14pm

I feel like there's a name missing from your comment

Points: 0

#7 by Bryan Knowles // Nov 27, 2022 - 12:32pm

Yeah, someone switched something with the comments, and the comment topics aren't showing up anymore.  I'll alert the tech crew.

(I also have no idea what the "points" are supposed to be at this point in time)

Points: 0

#8 by Theo // Nov 27, 2022 - 12:52pm

Nononononooo!

We dont need comment topics. Maybe one person used them properly, two people started their topics on it and the other 98% ignores them. 

Points: 0

#20 by Paul R // Nov 27, 2022 - 5:09pm

(I also have no idea what the "points" are supposed to be at this point in time)

I think it's like where you're in Hufflepuff or Gryffindor and Gandalf gives you points to power your spaceship and win the Hunger Games.

Points: 0

#23 by mathesond // Nov 27, 2022 - 7:23pm

Yes, the missing name is Nathan Peterman. Not sure his not playing had any appreciable effect on the final score.

Points: 0

#15 by Aaron Brooks G… // Nov 27, 2022 - 2:27pm

He is best left as The Nameless.

https://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Main/TheScottishTrope
https://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Main/IKnowYourTrueName

Points: 0

#3 by Theo // Nov 27, 2022 - 10:10am

 five of the six teams that played on Thursday had winning records, including two matchups between teams above .500.

That's... the same thing.

Points: 0

#4 by Bryan Knowles // Nov 27, 2022 - 11:06am

...It sure is.  I was going for "not only were five winning teams playing, but four of them were playing each other!"

...Which, of course, is obvious when there's only three games.  I blame the tryptophan.

Points: 0

#5 by JS // Nov 27, 2022 - 12:01pm

So no picks this week? Did I miss them? Whose picks am I supposed to go against?

Points: 0

#10 by JoelBarlow // Nov 27, 2022 - 1:46pm

the bears have their qb 

Points: 0

#11 by JS // Nov 27, 2022 - 1:52pm

Feel bad for the webmaster, or whomever. No subject headings, "points," and plentiful spam. Someone has work to do.

 

Points: 0

#12 by JoelBarlow // Nov 27, 2022 - 1:53pm

excited for the Titans to score 13 points, have 10 first downs, and to get another week of talk about how good their offense is

Points: 0

#13 by Paul R // Nov 27, 2022 - 2:01pm

Tannehill throws short pass to Henry. Henry rumbles about 65 yards and fumbles at the two. Ball bounces into the end zone and is recovered by another player for the TD. 

So how does this work on the stat line? Is it a 75-yard TD pass? I imagine Henry's DYAR will get credit for the YAC but lose because of the fumble.

Points: 0

#14 by Bryan Knowles // Nov 27, 2022 - 2:05pm

It's not a touchdown pass by the NFL's rules, so Tannehill fantasy managers frustrated!

Points: 0

#16 by JoelBarlow // Nov 27, 2022 - 3:50pm

horrendous clock/game management from the Bucs

need to take a timeout there to leave yourself time

Points: 0

#17 by JS // Nov 27, 2022 - 4:42pm

Ive been hard on Lawrence, but he played well today. Still needs work, especially on ball security, but his arm looks stronger than last year, and it looked stronger last year than at Clemson. Great last drive.

Points: 0

#18 by JS // Nov 27, 2022 - 4:42pm

Anyone else driven nuts by Scott Hansen? His voice naturally has a lot of unction, and then he gets excited and sells everything real hard, and he winds up growling and barking everything. Dude needs to chill the f out.

Points: 0

#19 by Cythammer // Nov 27, 2022 - 4:45pm

It worked out in the end, but the Jags-Ravens game shows the risk of going for two with any appreciable amount of time left on the clock. You aren't going for the win... You are going for a heavy advantage but far from a 100% chance. You have to weight that against overtime, which will probably be about a 50-50 affair.

 

Of course, the other team could still go for a winning FG even in a tied game... But it's much less likely they will be aggressive if tied rather than trailing.

Points: 0

#21 by Spanosian Magn… // Nov 27, 2022 - 6:28pm

It's interesting how much things can change in-game: I happened to catch the middle chunk of TB-CLE, and TB looked pretty much dominant. Cleveland struggled to move the ball (and missed a FG when they did), and Brady was zipping strikes all over the place. But now I come back to see the final score, and the team stats, and: not so much! From that last touchdown on, they managed all of 3 yards/play.

Points: 0

#22 by Cythammer // Nov 27, 2022 - 6:56pm

Rams-Chiefs is closer on the scoreboard than it should be, statistically. LA doesn't have a great chance of actually winning but they really should have no chance at this point.

Points: 0

#24 by Spanosian Magn… // Nov 27, 2022 - 10:16pm

Packers-Eagles is nuts. 7 TDs with 2 missed extra points in the first half alone.

As a longtime Packers watcher, it is downright weird to see them with a kick returner who can gain more than 0 yards. First time since... Ty Montgomery had a few moments I guess... and before him, that one Allen Rossum year? That this team had a returner get the only special teams Super Bowl MVP is an amazing cosmic joke.

Points: 0

#25 by Spanosian Magn… // Nov 27, 2022 - 11:16pm

Christian Watson's breakout appears to be real, with a kind of ridiculous long TD where he just outran everyone.

Less good news for the Packers: Aaron Rodgers appears to have aggravated his thumb injury and is out. Although, with the way he's thrown the ball this year, and Jordan Love's fairly massive step forward, it's maybe not quite the precipitous drop-off it would have been years past.

Points: 0

#26 by Will Allen // Nov 27, 2022 - 11:39pm

The game tonight is featuring some of the worst defense I've ever seen from both sides of an NFL game. Just uspeakably bad in every aspect. 

Points: 0

#29 by Ryan // Nov 28, 2022 - 12:00pm

bring back real audibles

Points: 1

#30 by caminante0 // Nov 28, 2022 - 2:33pm

I used to read Audibles every Monday and loved it. I’ve tried to substitute with this liveblog but it is nothing like the original Audibles.  Please bring back Audibles. 

Points: 2

#31 by reddwarf // Nov 28, 2022 - 4:20pm

Oh Denver.  This game was like a microcosm of their whole season.  Besides the absurdity leading to their only touchdown described above, the Darnold fumble TD was their luck this year in a nutshell.  He's hit and goes down.  But because he fumbled on the hit he wasn't down by contact.  So then the fumble goes right to him lying on the ground and he can just roll into the end zone.

Literally if he hadn't fumbled he wouldn't have scored.  When nothing is going right for a team, NOTHING is going right.

Points: 0

#32 by Spanosian Magn… // Nov 28, 2022 - 10:20pm

[Troy Aikman watching a successful play] I don't like that.

Points: 0

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