Week 13 in the NFL included a full slate of 16 games with three games on Thursday (Thanksgiving), twelve on Sunday and one Monday night. Sixteen games gives us more of a chance for come-from-behind victories and, hopefully, a good game to write about. In Week 13, we actually had four of them!
WEEK 13 RECAP
Of the 16 games played in the NFL Week 13, 10 games were won by teams that trailed at one point or another in the game. Of those 10 games 6 were won by teams that found themselves down by 10 or more points at one time during the game. Of those 6 teams that overcame double-digit deficits, 4 of them were visiting teams.
For the third time this year and the first time since Week 8, there were multiple teams tied for the Safe Harbor Consulting Pro Football Crisis Management Award. Four teams overcame a deficit of 14 points in Week 13 to win the award. If you have 4 winners do you really have a winner? Well, for this award – yes. You have four winners.
OAKLAND VS DALLAS
In the traditional Thanksgiving Day football game in Dallas, the 6 – 5 Cowboys were hosting the 4 – 7 Oakland Raiders. The Cowboys were looking to keep pace with the Philadelphia Eagles in the NFC East while the Raiders were trying to keep their slim AFC playoff hopes alive. With the smell of turkey looming in the house, I sat down to watch this traditional game thankful for my wide-screen TV (and many other, less materialistic, blessings in my life).
This game got off to a wild start as Dallas fumbled the opening kickoff and the Oakland Raiders’ Greg Jenkins scooped the ball up and ran in for a 23 yard touchdown return. Near the end of the first quarter, the Raiders returned the favor to Dallas and fumbled the ball on their own 2 yard line. DeMarco Murray then ran in from 2 yards out to tie the score at 7 – 7.
In the second quarter, Oakland put up two long scoring drives, each ending with a 1 yard Rashad Jennings touchdown run to go up by 14 at 21 – 7. With under 2:00 to play in the half, the Cowboys put together a successful 2 minute drive and cut the lead in half on a DeMarco Murray 4 yard run up the middle.
The Cowboys tied things up in the third quarter on a 4 yard touchdown pass from Tony Romo to Dez Bryant and the teams entered the 4th quarter at 21 – 21 with the Cowboys moving the ball deep into Raiders’ territory and my wife yelling at me from the kitchen to come carve the turkey.
Two plays into the 4th quarter, the Cowboys finished off that drive with Murray’s third rushing touchdown on the day, from 7 yards out. Having scored 21 unanswered points, the Cowboys were now on top by a score of 28 – 21. Right at the 2 minute warning mark, the Cowboys’ Dan Bailey connected on a 19 yard field goal to put Dallas up by 10. Sabastian Janikowski kicked a 45 yard field goal to bring the Raiders to within a touchdown with 35 seconds left in the game, but a failed onside kick attempt sealed their fate as the Cowboys won, 31 -24, after trailing by 14 earlier in the contest.
ATLANTA VS BUFFALO
The Bills raced out to a 14 – 0 lead by scoring touchdowns on their first two possessions of the game. The first touchdown came on an EJ Manual 1 yard quarterback run around right end and the second one was a 4 yard Fred Jackson burst up the middle. The Falcons cut the lead in half before the end of the 1st quarter on a Steven Jackson 27 yard run through a hole over left guard.
The Bills went back up by 10 in the 2nd quarter on a 29 yard field goal by Dan Carpenter, but the Falcons came back to tie things up at halftime 17 – 17. The Falcons’ scores came on a 38 yard touchdown run my Antone Smith and a 49 yard Matt Bryant field goal as time ran out.
The Falcons took their first lead of the game in the third quarter on an 11 yard touchdown pass from Matt Ryan to Tony Gonzalez. But, the Bills tied it back up at 24 – 24 on a 21 yard pass from Manual to Fred Jackson.
The Bills scored first in the 4th quarter on a C.J. Spiller 36 yard touchdown run, but the Falcons knotted it at 31 – 31 on a Steven Jackson 1 yard run to send the game into overtime.
The Bills got the ball first in overtime, but threw an interception on the second play from scrimmage. Five plays later, Matt Bryant hit the game winning field goal from 36 yards out to give the Falcons the win after trailing 14 – 0 in the first quarter.
DENVER VS KANSAS CITY
Last week, Denver was on the wrong side of the Safe Harbor Consulting Pro Football Crisis Management Award after blowing a 24 point lead against the pesky New England Patriots. This week, the Broncos were visiting the Kansas City Chiefs in a battle for 1st place in the AFC West.
Each team’s first possession of the game ended with an interception by the other team. Kansas City converted their turnover into a touchdown when Alex Smith hit Junior Hemmingway on a 17 yard touchdown pass.
Eric Decker’s 41 yard touchdown pass from Peyton Manning, early in the 2nd quarter, tied the score at 7 – 7. It wouldn’t remain tied for long, however, as the Chief’s Knile Davis returned the pursuing kickoff back 108 yards for a touchdown. After picking off Peyton Manning for the second time on the day, the Chief’s scored again on a Smith to Anthony Fasano 12 yard touchdown pass to go up by 14. Of course, Peyton Manning is not one to let two interceptions get in his way and he got one touchdown back before the end of the half on a 3 yard touchdown pass to Knowshon Moreno. The teams went into half time with the Chiefs on top 21 – 14.
The 3rd quarter belonged to the Broncos. On the first possession of the half, Manning connected on another long touchdown pass to Eric Decker (this one, 37 yards) to tie the game up at 21. After forcing the Chiefs to punt, Manning and Decker connected again from 15 yards out to put the Broncos up 28 – 21.
And, on the second play of the 4th quarter, the Manning to Decker combo struck for their 4th touchdown of the day on a 1 yard pass to put the Broncos on top by a score of 35 – 21, completing the Broncos run of 28 unanswered points.
Kansas City got back to within a touchdown on a late 4th quarter touchdown of their own – a Jamaal Charles 1 yard touchdown run – but, their last drive of the game, trying to tie the game up, stalled out on the Denver 13 after a 4th and 4 pass attempt fell incomplete.
One week after blowing a 24 point lead to New England, Denver found themselves winning a game in which they came from 14 points down to secure the victory.
NEW YORK GIANTS VS WASHINGTON
The last game of our four-way tie games for the Safe Harbor Consulting Pro Football Crisis Management Award featured the other Manning brother quarterback in another game of two teams simply fighting for some respectability in a frustrating 2013 campaign. Capping off a long day of NFL Football, the 3 – 8 Washington Redskins were hosting the 4 – 7 New York Giants in a battle to stay out of last place in the NFC East.
The Redskins got the game started with a long, sustained, time consuming drive that resulted in a 1 yard Alfred Morris touchdown run and a 7 – 0 Redskins’ lead. Early in the 2nd quarter, the Redskins added another touchdown on a Robert Griffin III 19 yard touchdown pass to Logan Paulsen to put Washington up by a score of 14 – 0.
The Giants, however, were able to tie the game at 14 – 14 before the end of the first half. The first Giants’ touchdown came on Andre Brown 23 yard scamper around right end and the second touchdown was by way of an Eli Manning to Brandon Meyers 22 yard pass.
The only scoring in the 3rd quarter was on a 33 yard field goal by Kai Forbath that gave the Redskins a 17 – 14 lead. But, the 4th quarter belonged to the Giants. The Giants scored a go-ahead touchdown early in the 4th quarter on an Andre Brown 1 yard touchdown run and took a 7 point lead on a Josh Brown 39 yard field goal. The Giants’ defense help the Redskins scoreless throughout the quarter and the Giants were able to avoid dropping into last place in the NFC East and win a share of the Week 14 Safe Harbor Consulting Pro Football Crisis Management Award by a score of 24 – 17.
SAFE HARBOR CONSULTING
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Week 12 – Winner (To read the Week 12 article, click here.)
New England coming from 24 behind to beat Denver, 34 – 31.
Week 11 – Winner (To read the Week 11 article, click here.)
Week 10 – Winner (To read the Week 10 article, click here.)
Minnesota coming from 13 behind to beat Washington, 34 – 27.
Week 9 – Winner (To read the Week 9 article, click here.)
Week 8 – Winners (To read the Week 8 article, click here.)
New England coming from 14 behind to beat Miami, 27 – 17.
Denver coming from 14 behind to beat Washington, 45 – 21.
Week 7 – Winner (To read the Week 7 article, click here)
New York Jets coming from 11 behind to beat New England, 30 – 27.
Week 6 – Winner (To read the Week 6 article, click here.)
Week 5 – Winner (To read the Week 5 article, click here.)
Denver coming from 14 behind to beat Dallas, 51 – 48.
Week 4 – Winner (To read the Week 4 article, click here.)
Seattle coming from 17 behind to beat Houston, 23 – 20.
Week 3 – Winner (To read the Week 3 article, click here.)
Week 2 – Winners (To read the Week 2 article, click here.)
Buffalo coming from 8 behind to beat Carolina, 24 – 23.
Houston coming from 8 behind to beat Tennessee, 30 – 24.
Arizona coming from 8 behind to beat Detroit, 25 -21.
Week 1 – Winner (To read the Week 1 article, click here.)
Houston coming from 21 behind to beat San Diego, 31 -28.