Lions, Dolphins & Texans Among Teams That Overcame Adversity and Answered the Bell in Week 11
“They are who we thought they were!” The famous Dennis Green line rings true on the morning after Week 11 Sunday in the NFL. A dozen matchups delivered some opportunities for teams we pegged as playoff contenders to solidify that title. Four did just that with blowout wins — the Cowboys (+23), 49ers (+13), Bills (+26) and Jaguars (+20). Then, there were three teams who had to grind out a victory despite some adversity. The Dolphins, Lions, and Texans avoided upsets with second-half pushes… the way playoff teams should. Those three made us believers. Overall, seven out of 12 Sunday games were decided by one score, and that made for some exciting finishes. Here are five key storylines from some teams claiming big wins to start their holiday stretch run.
1. Cowboys’ Bland Ties NFL Record With 4th Pick-6
The Cowboys smoked the Panthers (33-10) and CB DaRon Bland came away with his NFL record-tying fourth pick-6 of the 2023 season. Dallas improves to 7-3, and its their sixth 20-point win of the season.
2. Stroud Extends Win Streak Despite 3 INTs
The Texans were 21-16 winners over the Cardinals for their third straight win. QB C.J. Stroud overcame a career-high 3 INTs (he had 2 INTs all season before Sunday) to still earn the win.
3. Lions Are 8-2 for 1st Time Since 1962
The Bears gave the Lions a run for their money, but Detroit notched their third straight win thanks to a fourth-quarter comeback that included 17 points in the final frame. The Lions beat the Bears (31-26), and they’re 8-2 for the first time in the Super Bowl era.
4. Purdy Has a Perfect Passer Rating for the 49ers
Did you forget about Brock Purdy? The Niners quarterback posted a perfect passer rating on Sunday (158.3) as San Francisco handled Tampa Bay (27-14). Purdy was 21/25 with 333 yards and 3 TDs. He’s the first QB in 49ers history with more than 20 attempts and a perfect passer rating.
5. Bills Blast Jets to Separate AFC East
Buffalo had a big question mark hanging over their heads after losing four of their last six, but a monster win over the Jets put them back above .500 (6-5) and in full control of their own destiny down the stretch. Josh Allen (275 yards, 3 TDs, 1 INT) bounced back, and the Bills defense forced the Jets to bench QB Zach Wilson.
A number of big-name players were hit with critical injuries in Week 11. Some of them could be season-enders, and a lot required a cart ride to the locker room. Here are some of the high-profile victims of major injuries: DE Joey Bosa (Chargers), RB Aaron Jones (Packers), RB Kenneth Walker III (Seahawks),
NFL Week 11 Scores & Highlights
Monday Night Football (Tonight)
Eagles at Chiefs (8:15 pm ET, ESPN)
CBS Sports: Browns Sign Veteran QB Joe Flacco to Roster
Photo: Gregory Shamus / Getty Images