The NFL is moving into Week 12 of the 2022 NFL season, marking a pretty big turning point in the year, and as always there’s plenty to talk about.
With the NFL moving to an 18-week season last year, that means this week is now the two-thirds point of the season, and things are going to get very exciting over the coming weeks, and perhaps even more important, a lot is going to be decided over the coming weeks.
Playoff spots are going to be clinched, eliminations will be confirmed and we will be keeping an eye out for which teams are trying to get hot as they enter the postseason as they hope to go on a run all the way to the Super Bowl in Arizona in early February.
But before we think too far into the future, we have to look at what is going on this week in what could have some very interesting ramifications for everything that is going to happen and unfold as the rest of the year goes on.
Here is what we think are going to be the five biggest talking points as the NFL turns to Week 12, starting with the all-important Turkey feast that is Thanksgiving Day today:
Josh Allen, is he really all the way back?
After suffering his UCL injury against the New York Jets, questions have surrounded the health of Buffalo Bills quarterback Josh Allen and just how effective he can be. Last week was a bit of a slow game for him by his standards, as he only threw the ball for 197 yards off just 27 passes (second-lowest all season).
So hopefully the Bills have been looking after his arm these past few days, because the Detroit Lions have been far from pushovers this year, and with Allen accounting for 82% of their offense, they need him to be at 100% if they’re going to pull out a win and get back in the driver’s seat for the #1 spot in both the AFC East and the AFC overall.
The Quarterback Carousel keeps on turning
In news that will really prove that no job is safe in the NFL is safe, New York Jets quarterback Zach Wilson and the Houston Texans’ Davis Mills, both of whom were taken in the 2021 NFL Draft, lost their jobs this week as their teams will move to their respective backups.
After taking the starting job away from a young quarterback, it is very difficult to go back to as it’s usually seen as a confidence-breaker early in their career. So it’s going to be interesting to see if this is going to be a permanent thing (not a rarity, quarterbacks have lost their jobs after just one year before), or just a ‘humbling moment’ for them as they and the franchises look to take a step forward.
Justin Fields, does he need to just take it easy?
However, with the Bears at 3-8, their season is pretty much done. And whilst Fields has been spectacular in recent weeks, there really is nothing to be gained by putting him out there for another few weeks, so it might be best for them to rest him up, sit him down (maybe even for the rest of the season), and focus on 2023 when we could really see a breakout season from him.
Will the real Minnesota Vikings please stand up?
The past two weeks couldn’t have gone more differently for the Minnesota Vikings, squeaking past the Buffalo Bills in a thriller before being humbled by the Dallas Cowboys last week at home. We still think that the loss was down to the emotional comedown, but they don’t have long to move on from that one.
Tonight on Thanksgiving they take on the New England Patriots who look to be back to being the tough side that they were during the dynasty years, so this will be a good test for them to see what their mental fortitude is like in the face of adversity, something they might need when the playoffs come around
Tampa Bay Buccaneers hoping for smoother sailing from here on out
To say that the Tampa Bay Buccaneers had a rough start to the season would be something of an understatement, as they started off 3-5, but have won their last two games to get back to .500, but more importantly, they are coming off a bye-week as they get set to take on the Cleveland Browns.
That means that their players have had a week to rest and more importantly recover, because they have been devastated this season, so hopefully their players will be back to 100% again (or as close as you can get) and they’ll be able to show us what they can really do.