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NFL Week 13 early live thread

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As the Rams get ready for the second wave, here’s what’s up first for Week 13.

Baltimore Ravens QB Lamar Jackson runs on to the field with a member of the armed services at the start of the Week 11 game against the Houston Texans, Nov. 17, 2019
Baltimore Ravens QB Lamar Jackson runs on to the field with a member of the armed services at the start of the Week 11 game against the Houston Texans, Nov. 17, 2019
Photo by Mark Goldman/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

New York Jets (4-7) at Cincinnati Bengals (0-11)

1pm ET/10am PT, CBS

There’s one good game among the early slate. This one is a good example of the quality of the other seven.

Over the course of the season, the Jets have offered one of the worst offenses in the NFL. In the last three weeks though, they’ve looked much improved behind QB Sam Darnold scoring 34 points in each (though yes, they did get a defensive touchdown a few weeks back according to the 0 people who have the Jets defense in fantasy). Not an obvious reason that can’t continue against the Bengals who are well on their way to earning the first overall pick in the 2020 NFL Draft.

Tennessee Titans (6-5) at Indianapolis Colts (6-5)

1pm ET/10am PT, CBS

Despite a similar record as the Los Angeles Rams, these two teams remain in the thick of the playoff fight over in the AFC. Both are just one back from the AFC South-leading Houston Texans with two other 6-5 teams in the Pittsburgh Steelers and Oakland Raiders both angling for a wild card spot.

The Titans have seemingly unlocked their offense making the switch from QB Marcus Mariota to Ryan Tannehill while the Colts have won just one in the last four games that included a spirit-breaking loss to the Dolphins.

Philadelphia Eagles (5-6) at Miami Dolphins (2-9)

1pm ET/10am PT, FOX

The Eagles are in the fight in the NFC East where the Dallas Cowboys currently sit atop things at just 6-6. Philly needs this game while the Dolphins’ tanking effort could certainly use a loss with a two-win margin over Cincinnati.

Green Bay Packers (8-3) at New York Giants (2-9)

1pm ET/10am PT, FOX

Take everything I said about Eagles-Dolphins and run it back right here for Packers-Giants.

The appeal here is that the Packers are one of the two teams along with the Minnesota Vikings that could open a sliver of light at the end of the 2019 tunnel for the Rams.

It’s a tall ask.

The Pack jumped out to an 8-1 start before losing two of the last three including a pretty resounding defeat against the San Francisco 49ers last week. Their defense was very suspect in October. Perhaps the Giants can put up enough points to outgun the Pack?

Cleveland Browns (5-6) at Pittsburgh Steelers (6-5)

1pm ET/10am PT, CBS

It’s not going to be snowing. It’s Browns-Steelers in December and it’s not going to be snowing. We’re being cheated by the weather gods.

Fun game with the stakes here especially for the Steelers who hold the wild card slot for the #6 seed in the AFC going into this week. Two weeks ago, these two capped a physical, ugly battle with a fight that saw Browns EDGE Myles Garrett swinging a helmet at Steelers QB Mason Rudolph. No such chance for a fight between the two this week with Garrett suspended indefinitely and Rudolph benched for undrafted rookie QB Devlin Hodges.

Washington Two-game Winners (2-9) at Carolina Panthers (5-6)

1pm ET/10am PT, CBS

Strange game here as these two have only faced off 14 times in NFL history. I do suppose there’s some intrigue as to whether Panthers QB Kyle Allen is playing/will play well enough to lock down starting quarterback duties into 2020. With QB Cam Newton shut down for the year heading toward a 2020 year where his contract would only incur $2m of dead cap for the Panthers while recouping more than $19m in cap savings, Allen’s 2019 could end up being a strong job interview for the 2020 job.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers (4-7) at Jacksonville Jaguars (4-7)

1pm ET/10am PT, FOX

This one’s about the quarterbacks.

For Tampa, they’re plodding through yet another disappointing season under QB Jameis Winston...but they’re plodding in big chunks. Winston is second in the NFL as of now in passing yards with 22 touchdowns. The big issue, as usual, is his interceptions of which he has thrown 20 by far the most in the league. Winston is scheduled to become a free agent in three months. Franchise-altering decision for Tampa incoming.

For Jacksonville, they inked QB Nick Foles to a huge deal this offseason. His contract likely locks him into the job through 2021, so they’re going to want to see him perform well down the stretch now that he’s back from injury. Jags fans certainly had some fun with the Minshew Magic while QB Gardner Minshew filled in for Foles for the first nine weeks of the season, so the patience might wear thin especially if things don’t start well next year.

San Francisco 49ers (10-1) at Baltimore Ravens (9-2)

1pm ET/10am PT, FOX

While both of these two are angling for a #1 seed, they’ve just about locked up one of the top two slots for the playoffs.

This is a barometer game. Both have been fantastic all year though the Ravens have hit another gear since their Week 8 bye. The Niners slapped the Packers around last week, but went 2-1 the previous three with both wins over the Arizona Cardinals and neither looking dominant. Not saying a loss for San Fran would open a crisis of capability, but they could well start their December playoff push with a loss before heading to a 10-2 New Orleans Saints team that could tap the brakes on the Niners’ confidence.