Around the NFL: Tua Claus, Packers Still Alive, Josh Jacobs is Mad, Playoff Picture Update, More

I hope everyone had a wonderful holiday weekend with plenty of NFL games on their television screens. Have you ever heard the argument about whether or not ‘Die Hard’ is a Christmas movie? For the record, it’s not (Michael: It is, though), but we might have to add Sunday’s Dolphins-Packers game into that conversation after the Santa Claus impression that Tua Tagovailoa put on in the second half in Miami.

Tua Falters, Dolphins Fall to Packers

When I got into my car on Sunday to head to my parent’s house for Christmas, the Dolphins were leading the Packers 20-13. Tua Tagovailoa was playing well, and it looked like the Dolphins were a half away from ending Aaron Rodgers and the Packers’ season.

When I got to their house, only about 15 minutes from where I left, Tua was doing his best Santa Claus impression for Green Bay: Gifting them possessions and, eventually, the game. None worse than the last, which was an ugly look for Tua.

Tagovailoa’s three second-half interceptions allowed Rodgers and the Packers to save their season with a 26-20 victory in Miami. Miami’s second-half performance and the recent losing streak that may very well cost the Dolphins their shot at the playoffs has me wondering if Tua Tagovailoa is actually good or if Jaylen Waddle and Tyreek Hill are outstanding players who make Tua look better than he is.

It’s probably a little bit of both. Tua is a good quarterback, maybe not an elite quarterback, but he can perform like one with his double-headed monster receivers at his disposal. This is another reason for the Bears to make sure that they do whatever they can to get Justin Fields a legitimate No. 1 wide receiver in the near future.

To be clear, I think that Justin Fields is better than Tua right now; but lacks the weapons around him that Tua has.

Josh Jacobs is Frustrated

The Raiders loss to the Pittsburgh Steelers on Saturday night ended any chance they had of making the playoffs. Raiders running back Josh Jacobs was unhappy about the late-game collapse, and he made it known in the locker room after the game. (NSFW warning)

Here’s Jacobs response to being asked how many times he and Raiders players can keep talking about the same things, and repeating the same things:

“Man, I’m tired of dealing with this sh*t. Tired of dealing with this sh*t. Every day I come in here and bust my a**. I see the guys bust their a**, and the result is not there. For me, in the last four years, the result hasn’t been there. Quite frankly, I don’t know what else to do.”

Jacobs sounds like a player looking for a change. Maybe even a change of scenery, who knows? Jacobs is an unrestricted free agent after this season.

AFC Playoff Picture

Here’s where the AFC playoff picture stands after the weekend of NFL action:

  1. y-Buffalo Bills (12-3)
  2. y-Kansas City Chiefs (12-3)
  3. x-Cincinnati Bengals (11-4)
  4. Jacksonville Jaguars (7-8)
  5. x-Baltimore Ravens (10-5)
  6. Los Angeles Chargers (8-6)
  7. Miami Dolphins (8-7)

In the hunt:

  • New England Patriots (7-8)
  • New York Jets (7-8)
  • Tennessee Titans (7-8)
  • Pittsburgh Steelers (7-8)
  • NFC Playoff Picture

    Here’s where the NFC playoff picture stands after the weekend of NFL action:

    1. x-Philadelphia Eagles (13-2)
    2. y-Minnesota Vikings (12-3)
    3. y-San Francisco 49ers (11-4)
    4. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (7-8)
    5. x-Dallas Cowboys (11-4)
    6. New York Giants (8-6-1)
    7. Washington Commanders (7-7-1)

    In the hunt:

  • Seattle Seahawks (7-8)
  • Detroit Lions (7-8)
  • Green Bay Packers (7-8)
  • Extra Points

  • Greg Joseph nailed a game-winning 61-yard field goal to lift the Vikings to a walk-off win over the New York Giants on Saturday. Joseph’s kick was a Vikings record for the longest field goal in franchise history, and it clinched the NFC North title for Minnesota.
  • T.J. Hockenson also set a Vikings record with 13 catches on Saturday. Hockenson also caught two touchdowns for Minnesota.
  • Justin Jefferson had another typical Justin Jefferson day with 12 catches for 133 yards and a touchdown. Jefferson is 26 catches away from breaking Michael Thomas’ single-season record with two games to play.
  • I’m honestly so jealous that he doesn’t play in Chicago:
  • The Rams smoked the Broncos on Sunday, and the Broncos imploded on the sideline when offensive lineman Dalton Risner and backup quarterback Brett Rypien can be seen getting into a dust up on the sideline.
  • More on the Broncos implosion from Broncos beat reporter Mike Klis:
  • Update: Sunday’s embarrassment has cost rookie head coach Nathaniel Hackett his job!
  • Patriots’ QB Mac Jones might be in trouble with the league office this week:
  • The Eagles will be without Lane Johnson for the rest of regular season (at least) with an abdominal tear:
  • One more Week 16 game tonight, and it’s a possible clincher for the Chargers in Indianapolis!
  • written by

    Patrick grew up in Chicago's Bridgeport and Garfield Ridge neighborhoods before moving to the Western Suburbs of Chicago before eventually relocating to the Las Vegas area with his family in 2023. He started with Bleacher Nation in 2021 and has spent time as a Staff Writer and on the Chicago Blackhawks beat. He is currently a writer and editor at Bleacher Nation covering the Chicago Bears and the NFL at large and the author of the Bleacher Nation Newsletter. Patrick is a member of the Pro Football Writers of America (PFWA).

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