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NFL Week 13 reaction: Notes and observations

The NFL Week 13 slate was a wild one. We’re here to break down the most important takeaways from the games.

– The San Francisco 49ers are still a viable playoff team, but their dreams of reaching the Super Bowl are finished. While Jimmy Garoppolo isn’t a great quarterback, he’s certainly capable of winning ample games for a contender. Now, with Garoppolo shelved for the season with a broken foot sustained on Sunday against the Miami Dolphins, the Niners have to hope seventh-round pick Brock Purdy can step up. It’s possible San Francisco wins the NFC West, but not much more.


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– The Las Vegas Raiders are probably finished after starting 2-7, but they’ve reeled off three straight wins. And, to make things even more intriguing, they play on Thursday night at SoFi Stadium against Los Angeles. The Rams have three wins and are without quarterback Matthew Stafford for the remainder of the 2022 season. If Las Vegas gets to 6-7, it has a shot to make a push in the AFC playoff picture for a wild card berth.

– It’s time to wonder about the AFC North. After a hot start, the Baltimore Ravens looked primed to take the division, but with Lamar Jackson now dealing with a knee injury and the Cincinnati Bengals coming off consecutive wins over the Tennessee Titans and Kansas City Chiefs, both teams are 8-4. Cincinnati has the tougher schedule but also has its quarterback upright, while Baltimore has struggled mightily even against inferior competition. Buckle up.


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– The New York Giants and Washington Commanders played to a draw on Sunday afternoon, finishing 20-20 at MetLife Stadium. The two teams will have their rematch at FedEx Field come Week 15, with the winner earning the tiebreaker which could decide who goes to the playoffs, and who stays home. The Giants have a half-game lead on Washington but while the Commanders are idle this Sunday, New York gets to take on the one-loss Philadelphia Eagles.

– The AFC East race is just getting started. With the aforementioned Dolphins loss in San Francisco, the Buffalo Bills have a one-game lead in the division with five games remaining. However, Miami already beat the Bills in Week 3 and have their second date in two weeks. Miami has a huge game against the Chargers first, but should the Dolphins win (or the Bills lose to the New York Jets this Sunday), they have divisional destiny in their control heading to western New York.

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