Los Angeles Chargers v Indianapolis Colts
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The NFL officially turned into a winter wonderland in Week 16. 

The league had eight games that kicked off with a temperature below freezing on Saturday, which was a record for a single day. Things were so cold in Nashville that the Texans-Titans game actually got delayed an hour due to rolling blackouts in Tennessee that were ordered due to the extreme cold. 

The Panthers played their coldest home game in franchise history (20 degrees at kickoff), which was a 37-23 win over the Lions. The Ravens also had their coldest home game in franchise history (17 degrees), a 17-9 win over the Falcons. Not to be outdone, the Seahawks dealt with a temperature (12 degrees) that was the coldest in franchise history for any regular-season game. 

One game where weather wasn't an issue was in Minnesota, where the Vikings beat the Giants 27-24 on Greg Joseph's game-winning field goal from 61 yards out. The kick was the fifth-longest game-winning field goal in NFL history. The Vikings are now 11-0 in one-score games this season, which is the most one-score victories in a single season in NFL history.

So what kind of grade do you get for winning on a 61-yard field goal? Let's get to the Week 16 grades and find out. 

On Christmas Sunday, the elements were much better as we saw another Tom Brady comeback in the desert, Aaron Rodgers keeping the Packers alive in Miami and Baker Mayfield putting up 50 points in L.A.

If you're looking for a deeper dive on the Jaguars' big win over the Jets that was played Thursday, you can check that out here

L.A. Chargers 20-3 over Indianapolis 

No one was happier to see Nick Foles under center for Indy than the Chargers defense, who absolutely feasted on the Colts quarterback. The Chargers' constant pressure led to seven sacks, with two of those coming from Morgan Fox. The defense also recorded three interceptions on a night where the only defensive mistake came from Derwin James, who was ejected for an illegal hit. The Chargers offense wasn't great, but it didn't have to be, thanks to the way the defense played. On a night where Justin Herbert turned the ball over twice, there were also plenty of bright spots for the offense with most of those coming from Austin Ekeler (79 total yards, two touchdowns) and Keenan Allen (11 catches for 104 yards). Thanks to this win, the Chargers are now headed to the playoffs for just the second time since 2014 and really, that's all that matters for a franchise that missed the postseason in each of Herbert's first two seasons. 
The Colts offense might have finally hit rock bottom. With Nick Foles running the show, the Colts were a total disaster: Not only did Foles throw three interceptions, but he was sacked seven times AND Indy didn't convert a single third down (0-for-10). This score probably would have been uglier if not for an inspired effort from a Colts defense that forced two turnovers while sacking Justin Herbert four times. One of those sacks led to a fumble in the second half that gave Indy possession on the Chargers' 21-yard line, but the offense squandered that opportunity away, just like it squandered away any chance Indy had of winning. 

Chargers-Colts grades by John Breech (Love the grades? Hate the grades? Let him know on Twitter.)

Tampa Bay 19-16 (OT) over Arizona

Tom Brady played three-and-a-half quarters of bad football, but then he apparently decided he wasn't going to let the Cardinals beat him. After falling behind 16-6 in the fourth quarter, the Buccaneers roared back by scoring on three of their final four possessions of the game and it was a big thanks to Brady, who threw for 162 yards on those three scoring possessions after throwing for just 119 on every other possession before that. Despite Brady's early struggles, the offense was able to stay afloat thanks to Leonard Fournette, who finished with 162 total yards on 29 touches. The Buccaneers defense also came up big by forcing three turnovers, including two fumble recoveries that came in key situations. A loss on Sunday would have been a disaster for Tampa Bay's playoff chances, but instead, Brady delivered a Christmas miracle by leading them to a win and putting them on the cusp of winning the NFC South.  
The Cardinals had a QB under center who was making his first career start and they had nothing to play for on Sunday night, but even under those circumstances, they still almost pulled off the upset and it was an upset that could have happened if not for two big mistakes. In the first half, Trace McSorley lost a fumble on a drive that made it down to Tampa Bay's 13-yard line, and in the second half, Keaontay Ingram fumbled away a pitch with under five minutes left to play. Other than that, the Cardinals actually looked somewhat impressive, especially James Conner (120 total yards, 1 TD) and Greg Dortch (123 total yards). Marco Wilson also came up big for Arizona with two interceptions, but the Cards defense couldn't stop Tom Brady when it counted most. The Cardinals almost pulled off the upset, but like their entire season, things unraveled quickly and didn't end the way they wanted. 

Buccaneers-Cardinals grades by John Breech (Love the grades? Hate the grades? Let him know on Twitter.)

L.A. Rams 51-14 over Broncos

Honestly, the less said about this performance, the better. Russell Wilson was an epic disaster, as he has been for much of the year. The defense had its worst game of the season against an opponent missing nearly all of its top contributors. It doesn't get worse than the effort the Broncos put on the field this week.
They dominated the game from start to finish. They moved the ball at will both on the ground and through the air. They prevented the Broncos offense from doing anything of note other than turning the ball over, until the result was no longer in doubt. 

Broncos-Rams grades by John Breech (Love the grades? Hate the grades? Let him know on Twitter.)

Green Bay 26-20 over Miami

The Packers defense might have just saved Green Bay's season. After falling behind 20-10 in Miami, the Packers were able to claw their way back into this game, thanks to a defense that forced four turnovers on Miami's final five possessions while also shutting out the Dolphins in the second half. Although the defense struggled at times to slow down the Dolphins' speedy receivers, the unit did come up with three fourth-quarter interceptions that helped seal that game. Offensively, the Packers weren't overly impressive, but Aaron Rodgers got them in scoring position often enough that Mason Crosby was able to hit four field goals. Matt LaFleur also coached this game like Green Bay's season was on the line: The Packers went for it on five different fourth downs and converted three of those. The Packers' playoff hopes were on life support going into Week 16, but now, they're very much alive following this win.
No team will be happier to see December end than the Miami Dolphins. They totally imploded during the month of December with an 0-4 record, and their Christmas loss to the Packers might have been the worst of those four losses. The problem for Miami is that Tua Tagovailoa suffered a total meltdown with THREE interceptions in the fourth quarter. Those picks led to six points for Green Bay and proved to be the difference in the game. Tua's nightmare fourth quarter overshadowed impressive performances from both Jaylen Waddle (five catches, 143 yards, 1 TD) and Tyreek Hill (four catches, 103 yards). This loss wasn't all on Tua, though: Raheem Mostert lost a key fumble just before halftime and Jason Sanders missed a 48-yard field goal. With four straight losses, the Dolphins better get things figured out soon or they could end up missing the playoffs.

Packers-Dolphins grades by John Breech (Love the grades? Hate the grades? Let him know on Twitter.)

Minnesota 27-24 over N.Y. Giants

New York played well in this game. Daniel Jones had one of his best performances of the year. Saquon Barkley looked explosive in space. Isaiah Hodgins, Richie James and Darius Slayton all made plays. With their backs against the wall down by eight points, the Giants drove right down the field and tied the game. Ultimately, they just could not get enough third-down stops to come away with a win.
Minnesota's stars showed up big, with Justin Jefferson and T.J. Hockenson combining to catch 25 passes for 242 yards and three touchdowns. The Vikings also managed to somehow remain undefeated in one-score games, thanks to Greg Joseph's 61-yard field goal as time expired. The defense did not put forth a particularly good performance, but that's why you try to win all three phases of the game, I suppose.

Giants-Vikings grades by Jared Dubin (Love the grades? Hate the grades? Let him know on Twitter.)

Buffalo 35-13 over Chicago

This was a sloppy game for Josh Allen, but that didn't matter, because nearly everyone else brought their 'A' game for Buffalo. The Bills' rushing attack was nearly unstoppable on a day where Buffalo totaled 254 yards on the ground, which was the team's highest rushing total since 2016. Devin Singletary (106 yards) and James Cook (99 yards) averaged an absurd 8.9 yards per carry against the Bears defense. The Bills defense shut down Justin Fields, who rushed for just 11 yards. On a frigid day, this could have turned into a trap game for the Bills (12-3), but they took care of business and they still hold the inside track to getting the top seed in the AFC. 
The Bears scored a touchdown on their opening drive, but then things quickly fell apart after that. A big part of the Bears' offense is Justin Fields' ability to run, but the Bills took that away, and Chicago simply couldn't find a way to replace that production. The Bears defense actually did a good job of keeping Chicago in this game by forcing three turnovers, including two interceptions of Josh Allen, but eventually, the defense seemed to wear down, which is what happens when you can't stop the run. The Bears surrendered 254 yards on the ground, marking the second time this year they've given up more than 250, which is pretty wild when you consider it hadn't happened since 2013 before that. The upside for the Bears is that this loss combined with Houston's win means Chicago is still alive for the No. 1 overall pick.  

Bills-Bears grades by John Breech (Love the grades? Hate the grades? Let him know on Twitter.)

New Orleans 17-10 over Cleveland

The Saints needed a win to keep their NFC South title hopes alive and they were able to pull it off on a day where they were playing in the coldest game in franchise history (six degrees at kickoff). With the temperatures so low, the Saints decided to play it safe on offense by sticking to their ground game, and the plan worked to perfection. Alvin Kamara (76 yards, 1 TD) and Taysom Hill (56 yards, 1 TD) led a rushing attack that totaled 152 yards and two touchdowns. Defensively, not only did the Saints pitch a shutout in the second half, but Daniel Sorensen came up with an interception in the third quarter that set up Kamara's TD, which proved to be the game-winner. At 6-9, the Saints are suddenly very much alive in the NFC South race with just two weeks left to play. 
When you're paying your quarterback $230 million in guaranteed money, you'd hope that he could come up with at least one big play for you, but Deshaun Watson couldn't do that for Cleveland on Saturday. The Browns went scoreless in the second half, and a big reason for that is because Watson went 8 for 19 for just 79 yards. He also threw an interception in the third quarter that set up the Saints' eventual game-winning touchdown. The Browns had chance to keep their playoff hopes alive with a win, but instead, they blew a 10-0 lead in what can only be described as an ugly loss that unofficially ends an ugly season. 

Saints-Browns grades by John Breech (Love the grades? Hate the grades? Let him know on Twitter.)

Carolina 37-23 over Detroit

Everyone on the Lions defense is probably going to be getting a lump of coal in their stocking after their performance in this game. The Lions got absolutely run over by a Panthers rushing attack that totaled 320 yards, which marks the most the Lions have given up in a game since 1998. With the defense struggling, the Lions needed a big game from Jared Goff and the offense to stay in this, but the offense sputtered for the better part of three quarters before getting a few garbage-time scores. The Lions (7-8) were one of the hottest teams in the NFL heading into Week 16, but they seemed to fold under the pressure of actually being in a playoff race. 
If the Panthers have proven one thing this year, it's that if they can run the ball on you, they're going to win and they were able to run the ball on the Lions. Thanks to D'Onta Foreman (165 yards) Chuba Hubbard (125 yards), the Panther were able to pile up a franchise-record 320 rushing yards and they're now 5-0 this season when they rush for 170 yards or more. The Panthers also set a franchise record with 570 total yards, which broke the old record of 548 set in 2017. The Panthers (6-9) are the hottest team in the NFC South right now and it feels like the division title is now within reach. All Carolina has to do to take home the division title is win its final two games (at Tampa Bay, at New Orleans).  

Lions-Panthers grades by John Breech (Love the grades? Hate the grades? Let him know on Twitter.)

Baltimore 17-9 over Atlanta

The Falcons (5-10) had a failed fourth-and-goal at the one-yard line in the fourth quarter and that was basically emblematic of how their day went: They blew any chance they had at winning because they couldn't come up with big plays when they needed them the most. Not only did they have multiple failed fourth downs, but they lost a fumble in the first half after driving deep into Baltimore territory. Their red zone offense was especially bad as they scored zero touchdowns despite making four trips inside Baltimore's 20-yard line. This was a game the Falcons had to have to stay in the NFC South race, but they let it slip away. 
The Ravens have quietly won three of their past four games, and those wins have come courtesy of a defense that's shutting everyone down. Including Sunday's win, the Ravens have now surrendered 14 points or less in six of their past seven games. The defense was once against great on Saturday. Not only did they come up with multiple big stops, including a goal-line stand in the fourth quarter, but they also picked up two sacks while forcing a turnover. The Ravens offense also seems to be slowly getting back on track, and this week it was led by Gus Edwards, who averaged a wildly impressive nine yards per carry on 11 rushes. Even with Lamar Jackson out, the Ravens (10-5) have managed to stay alive in the AFC North race and that's all you can ask for if you're Baltimore. 

Falcons-Ravens grades by John Breech (Love the grades? Hate the grades? Let him know on Twitter.)

Kansas City 24-10 over Seattle

This game was an offensive nightmare for the Seahawks (7-8), who seemed to fall completely apart every time they reached Chiefs' territory in this game. In the second half alone, the Seahawks had a string of three consecutive possessions where they drove inside Kansas City's 34-yard line, but they came away with ZERO points, thanks to two failed fourth downs and an interception by Geno Smith. The defense played a surprisingly impressive game -- holding the Chiefs to under 300 yards -- but the unit got no help from an offense that couldn't put points on the board and if you can't put points on the board, you're not going to beat anyone in the NFL, especially the Chiefs. The Seahawks' playoff hopes aren't quite dead yet, even if it does feel that way after this loss. 
The Chiefs can beat you in a lot of different ways, but their favorite way is to use Patrick Mahomes and Travis Kelce, and that's what they did against Seattle. Mahomes threw for 224 yards, and more than HALF of those yards went to Kelce, who caught six passes for 113 yards. As good as the Chiefs' offense was, the defense might have been better. The unit shut down Seattle on third down, holding the Seahawks to just two conversions on 14 attempts. The pass rush also caused some serious trouble for Geno Smith, who was sacked twice while also throwing an ugly interception. After two straight weeks of playing close games, Chiefs fans were probably thrilled to get a win that was wrapped up early in the fourth quarter. 

Seahawks-Chiefs grades by John Breech (Love the grades? Hate the grades? Let him know on Twitter.)

Cincinnati 22-18 over New England

Had this game stopped at halftime, Cincinnati would have been looking at an A+. Not only was Joe Burrow on fire out of the gate as he completed his first 11 passes (new career high), but the defense was also shutting the Patriots offense down. They forced punts on every single possession through the first two quarters (minus a kneel down). However, the Bengals saw the script get flipped entirely in the second half as the Patriots went on an 18-0 run and nearly pulled off the comeback. Burrow threw a pick-6 to Marcus Jones on a throw intended for Ja'Marr Chase where the duo seemed to have some miscommunication. That gave the Patriots life and then a Chase fumble in the fourth quarter nearly gave the game away. For that, they get docked a letter grade but they were able to force a late turnover themselves to move to 11-4.
New England couldn't have come out to begin this game on a flatter foot. On offense, the Patriots went three-and-out on their first two possessions and at the same time, the defense was getting lit up by Joe Burrow for back-to-back touchdown drives. That instantly put them in a two-score hole and found themselves trailing by 22-0 at halftime. By the way the offense was looking through two quarters, the Patriots were very much on shutout alert. That said, a Marcus Jones interception off Burrow in the second half sparked an improbable comeback that saw the Patriots score 18 unanswered points and nearly pulled off the upset. But a Rhamondre Stevenson fumble near Cincy's goal line in the closing seconds coughed away the team's best chance at a much-needed win. At the half, New England was flirting with an "F" grade, but the resurgence in the second-half push led them to a passable mark.

Bengals-Patriots grades by Tyler Sullivan (Love the grades? Hate the grades? Let him know on Twitter.)

Houston 19-14 over Tennessee

It seems impossible to believe, but the Texans were simply the better team in this game. The Texans defense tortured Titans rookie QB Malik Willis, who was sacked four times, with two of those coming from Ogbonnia Okoronkwo. Willis was also picked off twice in the fourth quarter with the Texans emphatically shutting down all comeback attempts by the Titans. The Texans might have the worst record in the NFL, but Lovie Smith still has them playing hard, which is why they were able to pull off the upset in Nashville. 
If the Titans were smart, they would have just given the ball to Derrick Henry 40 times in this game, but instead, they decided to see what Malik Willis could do, and that gamble totally backfired. The rookie quarterback threw two interceptions with both picks coming in the final two minutes of the fourth quarter. Although Willis had some success with his legs (7 carries for 43 yards), the Titans couldn't move the ball through the air and that ended up costing them the game. Henry had a huge game (23 carries for 126 yards), but even he made a huge mistake with a second-half fumble. The Titans (7-8) are in a total free fall, and it's looking more and more like they're going to choke away the division to a Jags' team that they were leading by four games following Week 11. 

Texans-Titans grades by John Breech (Love the grades? Hate the grades? Let him know on Twitter.)

Dallas 40-34 over Philadelphia

The team let down Gardner Minshew at various points throughout the game, as the two interceptions weren't entirely his fault. Four turnovers and an inability to keep Dallas off the field did the Eagles in as they were handed their second loss of the year. The Eagles only rushed for 87 yards, a number that shows how much of an impact Jalen Hurts has on the ground game. The secondary struggled without Avonte Maddox and allowed 304 net passing yards in the loss -- just not good enough. This game didn't mean much in the grand scheme of things, but the Eagles would have preferred to clinch the NFC East and home-field advantage in Week 16. 
Have to give Dallas credit for overcoming two 10-point deficits in this game. Dak Prescott rallied well after throwing a pick-six on the first possession of the game, throwing for 347 yards and three scores. Dallas took advantage of Philadelphia's mistakes in this one, scoring 20 points off four Eagles turnovers. Yet, the Cowboys defense still allowed 27 points to the Eagles offense -- with a backup quarterback. This was a good win to wrap up at least the No. 5 seed in the playoffs, but Dallas may have dug too deep a hole to win the NFC East. Beating Philadelphia is a confidence booster for this team, though. 

Eagles-Cowboys grades by Jeff Kerr (Love the grades? Hate the grades? Let him know on Twitter.)

San Francisco 37-20 over Washington

The Commanders went into the halftime break tied with the 49ers, but ended up losing by 17. The offense showed some fight initially, but Taylor Heinicke was eventually benched for Carson Wentz after back-to-back turnovers. The defense held Christian McCaffrey in check, but allowed George Kittle to explode for 120 yards and two touchdowns. He was running wide open for the majority of the afternoon. Week 16 was not as disastrous for Washington as it could have been thanks to losses from the Lions and Seahawks, but the Commanders were simply outmatched by the 49ers.
I'm not sure how many people were expecting Brock Purdy's offense to drop 37 points today, but that's exactly what happened. Purdy was efficient, George Kittle was a force and the defense made life tough for Washington. I think Week 16 just further proved the 49ers are one of the most complete teams in the NFL.

Commanders-49ers grades by Jordan Dajani (Love the grades? Hate the grades? Let him know on Twitter.)

Pittsburgh 13-10 over Las Vegas

The only thing colder than the Pittsburgh weather on Saturday night was Derek Carr's accuracy. After starting the game 8 of 11 for 79 yards, Carr completely fell apart after that, completing just 8 of 19 passes with three interceptions. All three of those picks came during a second half where the Raiders did nothing on offense. Despite the offensive struggles, the Raiders still almost won this game thanks to a defense that only allowed one Steelers drive inside the their 20 all night. Unfortunately for Las Vegas, that drive was Pittsburgh's final one and it ended with a game-winning TD. Every Raiders loss seems more painful than the last. This is game the Raiders easily could have won, but they threw it away and now, they've also thrown away any realistic shot of getting to the playoffs.  
On a night where Franco Harris had his number retired, the Steelers paid tribute to the "Immaculate Reception" by pulling out an improbable win. Kenny Pickett struggled for most of the night, but he harnessed some magic late in the fourth quarter on a game-winning scoring drive where he went 7 of 9 for 75 yards, including a 14-yard TD to George Pickens with just 46 seconds left. The only reason the game-winning drive was possible was because the Steelers defense kept Pittsburgh in this game. After surrendering a TD on the Raiders' opening drive, the Steelers defense smothered Derek Carr for the rest of the game. The constant pressure led to three sacks and three interceptions by Carr. The Steelers were able to pick up the win, despite some major miscues, including two missed field goals and Pickett interception. With the win, the Steelers (7-8) kept their faint playoff hopes alive and they also made it possible for Mike Tomlin to finish .500 or better for the 16th consecutive season. 

Raiders-Steelers grades by John Breech (Love the grades? Hate the grades? Let him know on Twitter.)