Week 13 in the NFL was full of final-minute theatrics, thrilling individual performances and one result fans have been waiting for all season long.
Here is a look at some winners and losers from Week 13 in the NFL.
Winner: Detroit Lions
The streak is finally over! After 364 days without a win, the Detroit Lions came out on top in Week 13 with a 29-27 victory over the Minnesota Vikings. Jared Goff hit Amon-Ra St. Brown for an 11-yard touchdown as time expired to send Ford Field into elation.
Goff threw for 296 yards and three touchdowns, the first time he’s thrown three scores since Week 1. St. Brown led Lions’ receivers with 10 catches for 86 yards.
Detroit’s last win had come on Dec. 6 of last season, where the Lions defeated the Chicago Bears 34-30. With the victory over the Vikings, Detroit improved to 1-10-1.
Loser: Minnesota Vikings
You lose to the Lions, you end up on the loser list. That’s just how it works.
It’s not just that the Vikings were the first team to fall to the Lions this season, it’s how they lost. Detroit essentially handed the Vikings the victory late in the fourth. Up 23-21, Dan Campbell elected to go for it on fourth-and-2 on their own 28-yard line and Goff was strip-sacked. The Vikings went down and scored a touchdown to pull ahead 27-23 with just 1:50 left.
Then, Minnesota let Detroit drive 75 yards in less than two minutes and come out with the last-second touchdown to drop to 5-7. All seven of their defeats this season have been one-possession losses for Mike Zimmer’s crew and their playoff hopes have taken a big blow with just five weeks remaining.
Winner: Tom Brady and Rob Gronkowski
The Brady-Gronk chemistry continues to thrive. Brady hit Gronkowski for two touchdowns in the Tampa Bay Buccaneers’ 30-17 win over the Atlanta Falcons. The two have connected for 90 career touchdowns now, moving them into second in NFL history in most TDs by a QB-receiver duo.
The first score, a 27-yard pass in the second quarter, put the pair in a tie with Philip Rivers and Antonio Gates for second with 89. The second touchdown, an 11-yard pass-and-score in the third quarter, moved the Buccaneer duo in sole possession of second.
Brady and Gronkowski now sit only behind Peyton Manning and Marvin Harrison. That pair is in first with 112 touchdown combinations between them.
Loser: Houston Texans
Someone has to be the first, and the Houston Texans are this season’s first team to be eliminated from playoff contention.
Houston was shut out 31-0 by the Indianapolis Colts on Sunday afternoon. David Culley’s squad fell to 2-10 on the season.
It was the second time this season the Texans were held pointless and the fifth game the Texans did not score a touchdown.
Winner: Chris Godwin
While Gronkowski led the game with two touchdowns for the Buccaneers, Brady’s favorite target on the day was Chris Godwin.
The Tampa Bay wide receiver hauled in 15 catches for 143 yards. The 15 catches set a new career-high for Godwin and also broke the Buccaneers’ franchise record for most catches in a single game. James Wilder and Earnest Graham shared the previous record of 13.
So far this season, Godwin’s 15 receptions are the most in a single game by a receiver. Godwin passed Pittsburgh Steeler Najee Harris’ mark of 14 catches from Week 3.
Loser: Jacksonville Jaguars
For the 10th time in the last 11 seasons, the Jacksonville Jaguars will finish a season with at least 10 losses.
Jacksonville dropped to 2-10 on the season after getting thumped by the Los Angeles Rams 37-7 in Week 13. The Jaguars finished the game with under 200 total yards.
While not technically out of the playoffs yet, the Jaguars will need a miracle to keep their Super Bowl hopes alive.
Winner: Gardner Minshew
Getting his first start since Week 15 of last season, Gardner Minshew brought Minshew Mania to the City of Brotherly Love.
Starting in place of the injured Jalen Hurts, Minshew led the Philadelphia Eagles to a 33-18 win over the New York Jets. The Eagles QB finished the day 20-for-25 for 242 yards and two touchdowns, adding 11 yards on the ground as well.
It’s safe to say Minshew was fired up after his first win since Week 1 of the 2020 season. He and his father shared an emotional moment post game.
Loser: Baltimore Ravens
With 12 seconds left in the game, Lamar Jackson hit Sammy Watkins for a six-yard score to bring the Baltimore Ravens to within a point against the Pittsburgh Steelers. A successful extra point would have likely sent the game into overtime.
Instead, John Harbaugh elected to try for the win and go for two. Jackson couldn’t hit Mark Andrews in the flat, with the pass going off the outstretched fingers of Andrews and falling to the ground to give the Steelers the 20-19 win.
The dicey decision dropped the Ravens to 8-4 on the season, while the Steelers improved to 6-5-1 with the win.
Winner: Brian Johnson and the WFT
Last week, Brian Johnson was a member of the Chicago Bears’ practice squad. On Sunday, he was the hero for his hometown team.
Johnson nailed a 48-yard field goal with 41 seconds left to lift the Washington Football Team to a 17-15 win over the Las Vegas Raiders. The victory extended Wahsington’s win streak to four games and the team now sits 6-6 on the season and in a playoff spot.
The 22-year-old kicker was signed off the Bears’ practice squad this week by Washington. Johnson grew up in the D.C. area and attended Gonzaga College High School in D.C.