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Wild Card Watch: Week 12

Tampa Bay Buccaneers v Indianapolis Colts Photo by Michael Hickey/Getty Images

Current Standings

5th Bengals (7-4) 85% chance

6th Bills (7-4) 70% chance

7th Chargers (6-5) 55% chance

OUT Broncos (6-5) 20% chance

OUT Raiders (6-5) 20% chance

OUT Colts (6-6) 30% chance

OUT Browns (6-6) 10% chance


Score this Week: Won 41-10 vs. Steelers

The Bengals just completely dominated the Steelers. This game was already over at the half, with the Bengals leading 31-3 after a pick-six by former Steeler Mike Hilton. The Bengals are among the hottest teams in the NFL right now, with Mixon running the ball like an All-Pro back, Burrow taking advantage of his two weapons in Chase and Higgins, and a defense that has been surprisingly good this year.

Next Week: Vs. Chargers

The Bengals will go against a direct competitor for the playoffs. The Chargers have not been looking good over the past couple of weeks, and a Bengals’ team that is clicking at the perfect time could make things even worse for the Chargers. A win here all but guarantees the Bengals a playoff spot.


Score this Week: Won 31-6 @Saints

Josh Allen and the Bills’ passing offense got back on track against a struggling Saints team, while the defense kept the makeshift Saints offense at bay all game long, holding them to under 200 total yards. Great job by Buffalo to put the ugly loss against the Colts quickly in the rearview mirror and enter their toughest part of the schedule on a positive note.

Next Week: Vs. Patriots

The Bills will have the first of their two remaining matchups with the Pats this Monday night, and this looks like it will be a must-watch game. Allen will be facing the best defense in the NFL right now, and Mac Jones is leading an effective Patriots’ offense that keeps turnovers at a minimum and manages to put up a respectable amount of points on the board.


Score this Week: Lost 13-28 @Denver

Tough loss for the Chargers against a division rival, as they dropped their first matchup against Denver in what was an ugly game. Two late touchdowns by the Broncos (one a pick-six) killed the Chargers, who are now forced to win out their remaining divisional games (Chiefs-Broncos-Raiders) in order to have a chance.

Next Week: @Bengals

Chargers will go up against a red-hot Bengals’ team, that are playing at home fresh off a dominating rivalry win. Losing this one would put the Chargers in a very tough spot with some difficult remaining matchups left on the schedule.


Score this Week: Won 28-13 Vs. Chargers

Impressive win for the Broncos against a tough divisional opponent to insert themselves into the wild card race. Despite trading away Von Miller, the Broncos still have an impressive defense, and Teddy B is an okay quarterback. However, with a tough remaining schedule, I don’t like the Broncos’ chances of sneaking in.

Next Week: @Chiefs

This will be a real test for the Broncos defense. If Denver manages to escape KC with a win, then their playoff outlook will look much brighter, but facing off against a Chiefs team fresh off a bye week is no easy task.


Score this Week: Won 36-33 @Cowboys

Derek Carr once again looked like a top 10 quarterback, Daniel Carlson was perfect on his 8 kicks, and the defense did just enough to hold back the Cowboys on what was one of the most entertaining matchups of the week. There are still plenty of concerns with the Raiders, but they seem to be able to find ways to win.

Next Week: Vs. Washington FT

I am not sure the Raiders have enough talent on offense to put up as big of a game against the Football Team. This is the last game the Raiders will get against a losing team, as their schedule gets really complicated after this week, including a matchup with the Colts.


Score this Week: Lost 10-16 Vs. Ravens

The Browns lost an ugly game against the Ravens, where their potent rushing attack was completely shut down (just 36 yards between Chubb/Hunt) and Mayfield once again looked lost on the field (18/37 for 247 yards). The Browns’ defense managed to force 4 interceptions but it was just not meant to be for Cleveland, as the Browns’ playoff chances are much slimmer now.

Next Week: BYE