Wednesday Morning QB (Week 13)

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The NFL season is in the full and so is the playoff race as the race heats up with the first teams clinching their spots in the playoffs. Week 13 saw the first playoff spots be taken as teams began clinching their divisions and other simply taking a playoff spot. It was the first week that the playoff race was to be in full focus but unfortunately it did not take the full focus. It was a much more serious issue that took focus in week 13 as a result of a tragic event on Saturday. Jovan Belcher was not the biggest name in the NFL or on his team but he had been slowly working his way into the lineup for year. This year Belcher was finally a legitimate starter for the Kansas City Chiefs in 2012 as his career seemed to be on the rise. Then on Saturday some devastating news came in as the new starter had killed himself at the Chiefs’ facility at Arrowhead. It was a sad day for the Chiefs as Belcher would arrive at the facility and tell GM Scott Pioli and head coach Romeo Crennel thank you for everything they had done for him then shot himself. It was yet another case of a football life ending too soon for no reason. As sad as his death was it was the events preceding Belcher’s death that brought the worst of the world into the NFL. Before Belcher drove to the facility and committed suicide he killed his girlfriend and mother of his 3-month old child. There is still a lot not known about the situation other than Belcher and his girlfriend used to fight and were fighting about financial issues before the tragedy. There are a number of things that could have happened that resulted in this unnecessary loss of life. It may have been yet another case of mental illness gone unnoticed in sports. This has been a major issue in the past years as player have gone undiagnosed with mental illnesses with tragic results. Another issue that was brought to light by the Chiefs after observing a moment of silence on Sunday was that of domestic abuse. Many people have claimed that Belcher was a typical entitled athlete who believed he was better than everyone else. As a result of this attitude Belcher has been painted as someone who treated his girlfriend in a way that no man should ever treat a women. The issue of domestic abuse has taken control in this issue as the Chiefs observed a moment of silence for all victims of domestic abuse. If this portrait of Belcher is true it is a tragic event that highlighted a very large issue in not only the sports world but the world in general. It is important to remember though that the cause of the tragedy whether the act of a sane man with controllable issues that were not brought to light with by anyone around him or the act of a man with issues that went undiagnosed. It was a sad day in the NFL and one that has become an all too familiar sight in the league. Year after year the NFL sees tragedies of former players and current players that are rarely explained. It is always a shock to fans to hear and brings the importance of sport into perspective. Yes as many have said needing a tragedy to bring things into perspective is not a good thing but all fans can lose track when watching their team. It may not be the best reflection to say that it puts things into perspective but it may be the only thing to say as another tragedy befalls the league and sends a dose of reality into the sports fan. Eventually fans will move on and it will become a distant memory but for some, including the child left with no parents, this week will forever change lives as the tragedy put football on hold this week.

 

Four Quarters
(Four Quick Thoughts on Week 13)

 

The AFC is Closing Fast
The AFC was quickly changed in one week as the playoff race all but ended in one week with three teams locking up the playoffs only leaving three spots as the conference saw the end of a lot of hopes for a playoff appearance

 

This Kid Has It
The draft is always an iffy thing but the Indianapolis Colts got the man they needed and he has proven to be the best thing to happen to the team since they drafted Peyton Manning as he led the team to another win with a great final drive

 

Another Controversy
With San Francisco in the midst of a QB controversy the New York Jets have joined the party after pulling Mark Sanchez for Greg McElroy leaving them in a debate between Sanchez, McElroy, and Tim Tebow for next week

 

NFC Remains Wide Open
The NFC is much the opposite picture from the AFC as there was only one division race that would be decided during the week as the Atlanta Falcons earned their division crown taking the first and only playoff spot so far in the NFC

 

NFL Standings 

American Football Conference
Division Leaders:
1. y-Houston Texans (.917)
2. z-New England Patriots (.750)
3. Baltimore Ravens (.750)
4. z-Denver Broncos (.750)
Wild Card:
5. Indianapolis Colts (.667)
6. Pittsburgh Steelers (.583)
In the Hunt:
7. Cincinnati Bengals (.583)
8. New York Jets (.417)
9. Buffalo Bills (.417)
10. Miami Dolphins (.417)
11. Cleveland Browns (.333)
12. San Diego Chargers (.333)
13. Tennessee Titans (.333)
14. Oakland Raiders (.250)
Out of the Running:
15. Jacksonville Jaguars (.167)
16. Kansas City Chiefs (.167)

 

National Football Conference
Division Leaders:
1. z-Atlanta Falcons (.917)
2. San Francisco 49ers (.708)
3. Green Bay Packers (.667)
4. New York Giants (.583)
Wild Card:
5. Chicago Bears (.667)
6. Seattle Seahawks (.583)
In the Hunt:
7. Washington Redskins (.500)
8. Dallas Cowboys (.500)
9. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (.500)
10. Minnesota Vikings (.500)
11. St. Louis Rams (.458)
12. New Orleans Saints (.417)
13. Detroit Lions (.333)
14. Arizona Cardinals (.333)
15. Carolina Panthers (.250)
16. Philadelphia Eagles (.250)

 

Key Scores:
Atlanta Falcons 23 – 13 New Orleans Saints
– The Thursday Night games have not been the best this year but that changed this week with a great game that meant a last chance for the Saints to make a run at the division but it wasn’t to be as the Falcons took the win and would eventually take the division

 

Indianapolis Colts 35 – 33 Detroit Lions
– The Lions are making a habit of blowing late leads as they would be ahead in the game going into the 4th quarter until Andrew Luck led the Colts back to tie the game and eventually to a last-minute drive for the win

 

Kansas City Chiefs 27 – 21 Carolina Panthers
– After a very tough few days the Chiefs were able to gut out a victory in a brief period of relief on what was likely a few days were nothing seemed to make sense after Jovan Belcher killed his girlfriend then committed suicide in front of the Chiefs’ facility

 

St. Louis Rams 16 – 13 San Francisco 49ers (OT)
– There have now been two meetings between these two teams and in both the Rams have proven to be the 49ers weakness as the first matchup saw a tie and the second came very close with Greg Zuerlein hitting a game winner from 53 yards

 

Next Week:
Chicago Bears vs. Minnesota Vikings (December 9th; 1:00 pm EST)
– With a loss in week 13 the Bears lost their hold on the NFC North and now they will be looking to play catch up with the Packers as they need to beat the struggling Vikings in hopes that the Packers lose so they can take over the division

 

Baltimore Ravens vs. Washington Redskins (December 9th; 1:00 pm EST)
– The Ravens came close to winning their division but a loss to the Steelers ended those hopes for the week but they will get another shot as the Ravens defence will look to stop super rookie Robert Griffin III

 

New York Jets vs. Jacksonville Jaguars (December 9th; 1:00 pm EST)
– The Jets are in a bit of a bind as they need to decide between three quarterbacks after Mark Sanchez was pulled in week 13 and Greg McElroy was put in as the Jets will now need to see if the Mark Sanchez era has ended in New York

 

Houston Texans vs. New England Patriots (December 10th; 8:30 pm EST)
– This could be a preview of the AFC Championship as both teams are on their way to the playoffs but in this game the Texans need the win so that they can do their part in securing the AFC South Division and to put them ahead for first place in the AFC

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