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NFC North Week 13 Recap

Week 13 in the NFC North was marked by an impressive bounce-back victory from the Green Bay Packers and three heartbreaking defeats from the other division members, lifting the Pack into a first place tie with the Chicago Bears.

The Bears suffered a tough home loss in overtime to the Seattle Seahawks, despite a rare solid passing performance from Chicago. Jay Cutler was near flawless, completing 17 of 26 throws for 233 yards, two touchdowns and most importantly for him and the Bears, no interceptions.

Wilson has been one of the few to slice up the Bears secondary

But the pride and joy of Chicago’s offense, the running game, never got going against the stout Seattle D. Matt Forte got plenty of attempts, 21 on the ground, but only mustered 66 yards and failed to find pay dirt.

Chicago’s defense also suffered an uncharacteristic meltdown as Seattle’s offense awoke in the second half, establishing a balanced attack they have not had on the road up until today. Russell Wilson had arguably the game of his career so far, throwing for nearly 300 yards and two scores, including the game winning one in overtime. He also eluded Bears rushers, and ran for 71 yards, supplementing Marshawn Lynch’s 87. Look for the Hawks to make a playoff push and for the Bears to fall into a wild card spot in the coming weeks, as Green Bay will continue to turn it on.

After starting hot and becoming one of the league’s surprise teams, the Vikings have struggled recently, as they have encountered the challenging portion of their schedule. Their loss to Green Bay dropped them back down to .500.

Despite getting a 210 yard game out of Adrian Peterson, who has been carrying the team on his back, the Vikings lost 23-14 at Lambeau Field. Aaron Rodgers was well…Aaron Rodgers, completing 27 balls on 35 attempts for 286 yards and a score. Meanwhile, Christian Ponder was notably ineffective, completing just 12 of 25 for 119 yards and two picks. The Vikings just don’t have enough to make the playoffs. They’ve been better than expected, but that’s only because Peterson has been more effective than we thought he would be coming off several injuries. He needs help and he doesn’t have it this season.

Stafford was good, but Luck was better

And then, there’s the Lions.  Oh, the poor, helpless Lions. Detroit blew a two touchdown fourth quarter lead with only a few minutes remaining to the Colts and fell to 4-8 on the season, virtually elimination them from playoff contention. Despite getting another solid game out of Matthew Stafford, who one again threw for more than 300 yards and two touchdowns, the Lions lost at home 35-33 on a last second TD pass from Andrew Luck. Luck outdueled Stafford, throwing for nearly 400 yards on the day with four TDs. Detroit now resembles the team from a few seasons ago that finished 6-10, but lost almost all of its games at the last second. But it doesn’t matter how they’ve lost them, with only four games left, the Lions are out for the count.


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