Kansas City Chiefs and Carolina Panthers players kneel for a prayer before Sunday's game.
Kansas City Chiefs: A+
The Chiefs played an inspired game of football in what must have been the most difficult time in franchise history. The team bonded together and was able to use a matchup against the Carolina Panthers as the first step of the grieving process. Kansas City could have gone into the game with their hearts and minds somewhere else—and no one would have blamed them—but credit to head coach Romeo Crennel for keeping the team focused in the wake of a horrible tragedy, and bringing home an inspiring victory to Kansas City.
The tragedy in Kansas City was a difficult situation on everyone involved, and while it is hard to point fingers at what should or should not have been done, it does feel like the NFL dropped the ball. Asking a team to play and a City to cheer, less than 28 hours after the horrific events that took place, feels like a huge mistake by the NFL. But the most disappointing aspect is that the NFL has a history of being out of touch during tragedies. After September 11th it took a full on protest from NFL players for the league to cancel its games the following Sunday.
Indianapolis Colts: A
The Colts are officially the team that nobody wants to see in the playoffs. They’ve won six of their last seven games, and at times look as scary as any team in the league. Andrew Luck was fantastic on Sunday, and threw two touchdowns during the final three minutes of regulation, included the game winning throw. The 8-4 Colts are a lock for one of the wild card spots in the AFC and should finish the season no worse than 10-6.
Jets coach Rex Ryan finally decides to bench Mark Sanchez during Week 13.
Rex Ryan: C-
Rex Ryan finally had enough sense to bench Mark Sanchez during the third quarter of their joke-of-a-game against the Arizona Cardinals. But, the question is, what took him so long? We are 12 games in and the Jets season is virtual dead, so does it even matter that Ryan has finally made the change? Rex has made a complete mess of his team, and brining in Tim Tebow ended up being the worst thing that could have happened to the fragile psyche of quarterback Mark Sanchez.
San Francisco 49ers: F
The 49ers lost to the St. Louis Rams in another overtime game that almost ended in another tie. Ultimately, this loss probably will not matter, but it is embarrassing that San Francisco could not beat the Rams in two overtime games this season. I guess St. Louis is Colin Kaepernick’s kryptonite.
Baltimore Ravens: F
The Ravens should be ashamed of themselves for losing a seven point fourth quarter lead to a Steers team being run by its third string quarterback. The 9-3 Ravens are still in an excellent position heading into the final four games of the season, and should win the AFC North, barring an epic collapse.