"The Stack" 12-2-19
Justin Tucker did it again. The Baltimore Ravens kicker made a 49-yard field goal in the rain as time expired as the Ravens won their eighth straight game, this won a 20-17 victory over the San Francisco 49ers, who they very may well see again in Miami in the Super Bowl.
The Stack is back on this Monday, the first Monday of December (how are we in December already?) and there are no more winless teams in the NFL. Woohoo! Congrats Cincinnati. Reaction to that and the rest of Sunday’s NFL action plus a MNF preview and prediction ahead of tonight’s pivotal NFC matchup between Minnesota and Seattle so let’s get right to “the stack” for today, Monday, December 2nd:
Browns 13 Steelers 20
The Cleveland Browns jumped out to a 10-0 and then their offense went cold. Credit goes to the Pittsburgh Steelers defense for that. It also didn’t help that Baker Mayfield hurt his throwing hand and had to have a glove on it for the second half. The Steelers wanted this game because of what happened a couple of weeks ago with Myles Garrett and Mason Rudolph. Still though, it’s a bad loss and look for a Browns team that has vastly underachieved this year.
Packers 31 Giants 13
Aaron Rodgers and the Green Bay Packers were great unlike last week against San Francisco. Part of that could be contributed to the weather conditions. Imagine, Green Bay being good in the snow. Who would have thought? Rodgers tossed four touchdown passes, two to Davante Adams, as the Packers handed the Giants their eighth straight loss.
Eagles 31 Dolphins 37
What in the heck was that Philadelphia? Carson Wentz and the Eagles offense actually played well and had a 28-14 lead only to see the defense inexplicably give it up and then the offense couldn’t complete the comeback. As if it’s not embarrassing enough to lose to the Dolphins, the Eagles looked to be completely fooled by a special teams touchdown by the Dolphins where Jason Sanders, the kicker, caught a touchdown pass from the punter. Really Eagles? Flying right into a cliff with your season.
Buccaneers 28 Jaguars 11
I think it’s safe to say that the Nick Foles era in Jacksonville has not gone according to plan. Three first half turnovers made this game as good as over for the Jaguars. They were down 25-0 at half and Foles was benched for the second half. The Bucs had a defensive touchdown in there too. Not a good look for the Jaguars.
Titans 31 Colts 17
It wasn’t look good for the Tennessee Titans, down 17-7 to the short-handed Indianapolis Colts. They had a couple of lost fumbles in the first half too. That is when running back Derrick Henry, the defense and special teams took over in the second half. Henry finished with over 100 yards a touchdown and special teams added a touchdown when they blocked an Adam Vinatieri field goal with the score tied 17-17 and ran it back for a touchdown. Maybe these aren’t the 8-8 Titans of yesteryear.
Jets 6 Bengals 22
Leave it to the New York Jets to follow up an impressive performance against the Oakland Raiders with a terrible performance against Cincinnati. You might say they bungled one in the jungle. Andy Dalton was the shot in the arm the Bengals needed and defensive end Chris Dunlop had three sacks as the Bengals got their first win of the season. Have to feel good for the Bengals and their fans.
Washington 29 Panthers 21
Pretty embarrassing loss for the Carolina Panthers. They jumped out to an early 14-0 lead and then must have felt like they could take the rest of the day off, because after that it was all Washington. Washington ran for 250 yards and Darrius Guice had two scores as Washington pulled off the upset. This is a death blow for the Panthers and may spell the end of the Ron Rivera in Carolina.
49ers 17 Ravens 20
This game absolutely lived up to the hype. In a monsoon rainstorm, San Francisco and Baltimore traded blows with one another. They would go for it on fourth downs frequently. Ravens quarterback Lamar Jackson ran for over 100 yards, his fourth game with over 100 yards rushing this season, an NFL record. In the end, it was the cool, calm and collected Justin Tucker who kicked the game-winning field goal for the Ravens eighth straight win. This had the feeling of a playoff game. Perhaps we’ll see it again in the Super Bowl.
Rams 34 Cardinals 7
Know what cures a blowout loss at home on MNF? A trip to the desert. L.A. Rams quarterback Jared Goff threw all over an overmatched Arizona Cardinals secondary all game long, amassing for 424 passing yards as the Rams throttled the Cardinals. It’s a good bounceback win for the Rams who keep their playoff hopes alive.
Chargers 20 Broncos 23
Another game, another inexplicable way the Chargers found a way to lose a game. The Chargers defense was making Denver Broncos quarterback Drew Lock look awfully good early on, but battled back to tie the game with only seconds left. Then an inexplicable pass interference penalty was called allowing Brandon McManus to kick the game-winning field goal. Only the Chargers. Only the Chargers.
Raiders 9 Chiefs 40
The wind definitely played a factor in this game. Hall-of-famer Patrick Mahomes only threw for 175 yards, but did pass for one touchdown and ran for another. The Raiders self-imploded with penalties and turnovers and the Chiefs were ready to pounce. They have all but secured the AFC West title. The Raiders now find themselves scrambling to make the playoffs. I don’t think it will happen.
Patriots 22 Texans 28
Is this the game that signals the end of Tom Brady and the New England Patriots? I’m not ready to go that far yet, but the loss is significant given that Brady and the Patriots offense was largely ineffective. Deshaun Watson threw for three touchdowns and caught another one though if you ask me, the option is more like a pitch and run and not a catch. The Texans have themselves a tremendous quarterback. We knew that already. Beating Brady and the Patriots? That is significant.
8-3 Minnesota Vikings @ 9-2 Seattle Seahawks 8:15 PM ET ESPN MNF
What a titanic matchup this is in the NFC. The winner can really control their destiny for seeding in the NFC playoffs. The Vikings can stay even with the Packers and the Seahawks can take over first place in the NFC West…for now. The Vikings are not at full strength with wide receiver Adam Thielen missing yet another game while nursing his hurt hammy. Because of that, and I hope I am wrong, I have to go with the home team. Prove me wrong, Vikings. Prove me wrong.
Prediction: Seahawks 27 Vikings 20
Coming up Tuesday: MNF reaction plus thoughts from the college football weekend