5 Overreactions to Week 12 of the NFL Season


Nov 28, 2023

Nothing generates as much buzz and excitement as the NFL. Week after week, the intensity continues to be ratcheted up as we race toward the postseason. As usual, several noteworthy headlines emerged from this week’s gridiron action.

Without further ado, here are five overreactions to what we saw in the NFL in Week 12:

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5. The Pittsburgh Steelers Are Winning the AFC North

It took firing their offensive coordinator, but the Pittsburgh Steelers finally look like an actual football team. The Steelers put up 421 yards against the Cincinnati Bengals on Sunday, vaulting them to fifth in the AFC and bolstering their playoff chances. Next up on their climb is unseating the division-leading Baltimore Ravens. 

The Ravens have a challenging schedule ahead. After their bye in Week 13, Baltimore suits up versus the Los Angeles Rams, at the Jacksonville Jaguars, at the San Francisco 49ers, and versus the Miami Dolphins before closing out the campaign against the Steelers. Not an insurmountable schedule, but also one that should result in at least a couple of losses. 

Conversely, Pittsburgh has a relatively unobstructed path to the end of the season. At +550 or better, it’s worth betting the Steelers close out the year as AFC North Champs.

4. Jalen Hurts is Better Than Patrick Mahomes

Look no further than the MVP futures board for validation that Jalen Hurts is better than Patrick Mahomes. The Philadelphia Eagles quarterback sprung to the top of the chart, currently priced at an NFL-best +150 to win the MVP award. However, the division goes much further than that. 

Hurts averages more yards per pass attempt, with nearly identical touchdowns, quarterback rating, and completion percentages to Mahomes. However, he accomplishes those feats with a sack rate nearly double Mahomes’s. 

The easy take is that Mahomes is better at escaping pressure. But with Hurts recording 61 more rushing attempts than his Kansas City Chiefs counterpart, it’s evident that the Eagles pivot is asked to do more with less. 

It’s time to get real about what Jalen Hurts brings to the gridiron. He’s better than anyone else on the field. 

3. The Seattle Seahawks Are Missing the Postseason

Sorry, Seattle Seahawks fans, this is where your ride comes to an end. The Seahawks have dropped three of their last four and are just getting to the meaty part of their schedule. 

Coming off Week 12’s loss to the Niners, Seattle is tasked with running through the Dallas Cowboys, the Niners again, and then the Philadelphia Eagles. One win from that bunch would be a success, but we don’t even think the Seahawks will be that lucky. 

The Green Bay Packers, Los Angeles Rams, and New Orleans Saints are all knocking on the postseason door. Unfortunately for the Seahawks, one of those teams will likely usurp them for their playoff spot.

2. Zay Flowers Should Get Benched

Trust me, no one was more relieved to see Zay Flowers run into the endzone than me. I had taken a firm stance on the Ravens, including them on several parlays at -3 to -3.5; however, Zay Flowers should be benched for scoring that touchdown in the waning moments of Sunday Night Football. 

By this point, the Los Angeles Chargers had burned all of their timeouts, and going down past the line of scrimmage would have guaranteed Baltimore the victory. Instead of his team’s win probability shooting to 99.9% by giving himself up, the Ravens left the door open for LA to pull off a stunning comeback. 

The Ravens got away with it against the Chargers, but some teams would have made Baltimore sweat a little more. Hopefully, a mistake like this doesn’t come back to haunt the Ravens somewhere down the line. 

1. The Dallas Cowboys Aren’t Making It Past the First Round of the Playoffs

With a better record than some division leaders, the Dallas Cowboys appear well on their way to securing a playoff berth for the third straight season. But making the postseason will be the only victory coming the Cowboys’ way after January. 

Twelve weeks into the football season, the Cowboys have yet to defeat a winning team. All of Dallas’ eight triumphs have come versus teams with losing records. Moreover, four of their next five games come against playoff teams. 

Let’s enjoy the Cowboys’ run for what it was: expected wins against inferior opponents. Keep in mind Super Bowls aren’t won in November.

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Thumbnail photo via Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports

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