With three games on Thanksgiving Day, Week 13 of the NFL schedule is already in full swing. Of course, there’s still plenty of action on Sunday as well and plenty of important information that’s come out during the holiday week. If you missed something during the holidays, let’s catch up on everything you might have missed.
The First One
With their win over the Falcons on Thursday night, the New Orleans Saints are officially the first team to clinch a playoff berth, locking up the NFC South division crown. They could soon be joined by both the Patriots and 49ers, who can also clinch this weekend. Of course, the Saints have far more goals they’d like to achieve, as their celebratory T-shirts read “The South is Not Enough.”
Not Here To Please
There was a Thanksgiving Day uproar in Dallas, with Cowboys fans more certain than ever that it’s time for Jason Garrett to be fired after losing to the Bills 26-15. But owner Jerry Jones says he’s not going down that road.
Jones continues to say that he won’t make an in-season coaching change and will stick it out with Garrett for the rest of the season. After Thursday’s loss, the Cowboys are now 6-6 and will likely be tied with the Eagles atop the NFC East by the end of the weekend.
Guess Who’s Back?
After three games, the Ryan Finley experiment in Cincinnati is over. The Bengals have decided to go back to Andy Dalton after Finley struggled to produce much of anything. He completed just 47 percent of his passes and gave little indication that he’s capable of being the team’s franchise quarterback. At this point, Dalton gives the Bengals the best chance to win a game over the next five weeks and avoid a winless season.
Now Guiding the Sleigh
The Steelers are also changing quarterbacks this week, benching Mason Rudolph in favor of Devlin Hodges. Rudolph has done a fine job in place of Ben Roethlisberger, but his performance has dropped off considerably in recent weeks. He threw four picks two weeks ago against the Browns and had just 85 passing yards in a win over the Bengals last week.
Pittsburgh will now turn to Hodges for this week’s rematch with Cleveland. Hodges started a game against the Chargers in October, completing 15 of 20 passes in helping the Steelers to a win.
Call Me Maybe
The Broncos are also considering a quarterback change this week. Vic Fangio hinted early in the week that Brandon Allen could be benched in favor of rookie Drew Lock. But as of Thursday afternoon, he said that nothing had been decided and wouldn’t name a starting quarterback.
Technically, Lock remains on injured reserve because of a thumb injury he suffered during the preseason, but he’s eligible to return. Allen led Denver to a win over the Browns in his first career start, but he’s had a dreadful time the past two weeks in losses to the Vikings and Bills.
The Patriots are the latest team to deal with kicker issues this season. Nick Folk has been ruled out for at least this week’s game against the Texans after undergoing an appendectomy. Kai Forbath is reportedly coming aboard as his replacement. Forbath last had a full-time job in 2017 with the Vikings and kicked with the Jaguars in three games last season.