Week 12 Observations

How odd was it on Thanksgiving when Justin Forsett was awarded a touchdown on a play where his knee and arm were clearly down due to technicality most people didn't even know about? Apparently, I never realized the extent to which coaches needlessly throwing challenge flags on scoring plays was ruining the game. If you really want to stop coaches from wrongly throwing challenge flags, why not simply behead them at the 50 yard line? It would be only slightly more heavy handed than the current rule and far more effective. Plus, it wouldn't ruin the cover for someone who had the Lions +3 at home.

Brandon Pettigrew is a worse version of Jermichael Finley - someone who drops passes and fumbles, but offers even less upside. Ryan Broyles is the only Lions receiver who might be capable of making other teams think twice about devoting their entire secondary to Calvin Johnson.

Whitney Mercilus has a great last name for a linebacker.

The only thing capable of slowing Andre Johnson thus far in his career has been injuries and a run-heavy system bolstered by a top defense. Now that the Texans run blocking is average and the defense has slipped without Jonathan Joseph, Johnson is obviously still a top-five receiver. (That might change again when Joseph returns, though).

I didn't watch much of the Dallas-Washington game, but if you weren't convinced last week RGIII is better than Matt Ryan, Joe Flacco and other QBs of that ilk already, maybe his decimation of the Cowboys defense persuaded you.

The Jets giving up 35 points in the second quarter was funny. So was Tom Brady racking up fantasy points up 30 with four minutes left.

It boggles the mind C.J. Spiller once again had just 14 carries after the Bills vowed to get him more work. He averaged 7.6 yards per carry, but of course Ryan Fitzpatrick had to attempt 33 passes at 5.5 per, not counting a pick and two sacks.

Reggie Wayne got another 14 targets Sunday and now has 144 targets in 11 games, a pace for 209. The last five years, the league leaders in targets had: 181, 179, 170 and 183, 170, respectively.

The difference between the Steelers and Browns is six points when Pittsburgh turns it over seven times on the road with its third string QB.

The Raiders are unbelievably bad right now. Say what you want about Al Davis, but whatever succeeded him is worse.

Russell Wilson is already a good quarterback, but you have to fade Seattle blindly on the road (and back them at home) until the market adjusts.

The Falcons are still a fraud, but they won because the Bucs are even more of a fraud. It was nice of Matt Bryant to miss the short FG at the end and leave me with a push, though. Trying a 56-yard FG, down one, on 4th-and-7 with 3:32 left was a questionable decision by Greg Schiano. Assuming the likelihood of success of converting was about equal to making the FG, I'd rather convert and have a new set of downs to burn clock and possibly score a touchdown. Moreover, you save seven yards of field possession of you don't make it.

Chad Henne got 10 yards per attempt Sunday and spread the ball to Justin Blackmon, Cecil Shorts and Marcedes Lewis. It was the Titans defense, but still - a nice follow-up to the Texans game for all three.

The key to enjoying the Chargers is to see them for what they are: performance art. I found this week's collapse on 4th and 29 both creative and inspiring. The execution was masterful. It really looked like they were trying to tackle Ray Rice, but just couldn't do it. Appreciate the greatness while you still can.

Colin Kaepernick played well (9.2 YPA), no sacks, just one pick, but he wasn't as sharp as last week, it was against the Saints and the team staked him to two pick sixes. There's some upside here, but it's probably more Russell Wilson than RGIII.

There's no truth to the rumor Vernon Davis wants Alex Smith back at quarterback.

It was awfully nice of the Packers to run the ball 23 times while having Aaron Rodgers throw only 25 passes despite being down big most of the game. The field-goal on 4th and 1 from the 11 down 17, and the 55-yard attempt early in the game were also gifts.

In games against the 49ers and Packers this year, the Giants have scored 64 points and allowed 13.


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