NFL: Grading The Week 15 Performance Of All 32 Teams

1 of 33

NFL 2012 Week 15: Grading All 32 Teams

Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports

Week 15 of the 2012 NFL regular season was one with extremes, with a few close games and plenty of double-digit margins of victory. There were also games showcasing playoff contenders with significant postseason implications, as well as other contests with teams simply playing out the string at this late point in the season.

On my personal report card for each team in Week 15, I have taken into account multiple factors. Opponent, team situation in terms of postseason hopes and overall decisiveness of a win or loss go to the top of the checklist, admittedly to the detriment of other factors.

A loss that officially eliminated a team from playoff contention or severely hampered any postseason hopes is a serious black mark for me, while on the flip side a win over a fellow playoff contender deserves big props on my report card. A particularly decisive victory over a fellow playoff contender gets special consideration from me, as I feel it should at this stage of the season with playoff seeds and positioning being so important. Winning on the road is also worthy of a slight boost in grade in my book.

But I also feel like no team should have to apologize for a win regardless of opponent or surrounding circumstances, so on my scale no winning teams from Week 15 get below a grade of “C-“.

Here are the grades I have given to each team’s Week 15 performance. Please feel free to comment, disagree and generally vent your feelings about my assessment of your favorite team’s performance last week.

2 of 33

Arizona Cardinals

Matt Kartozian-USA TODAY Sports

The Cardinals ended their nine-game losing streak with decisive 38-10 victory over the Detroit Lions in Week 15. Winning is obviously a good thing, but there’s not a lot to get excited about here.

Week 15 Grade: C

3 of 33

Atlanta Falcons

Josh D. Weiss-USA TODAY Sports

The Falcons will have to win a playoff game or two to completely quell their critics, but a 34-0 win over the New York Giants in Week 15 is a nice first step.

Week 15 Grade: A

4 of 33

Baltimore Ravens

Evan Habeeb-USA TODAY Sports

A new offensive coordinator did little to help the Ravens’ offense, and they simply did not have enough in any area to stop the Denver Broncos last week as they have now lost three games in a row.

Week 15 Grade: D

5 of 33

Buffalo Bills

Kevin Hoffman-USA TODAY Sports

The Bills fell behind early last Sunday, went scoreless in the second half and were simply blown out by the Seattle Seahawks 50-17. There’s not much else to say.

Week 15 Grade: D

6 of 33

Carolina Panthers

Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports

The Panthers won their second game in a row in Week 15, handling the San Diego Chargers 31-7 on the road. Head coach Ron Rivera’s job may now be safe, unless Carolina has a dismal final two games.

Week 15 Grade: C+

7 of 33

Chicago Bears

Dennis Wierzbicki-USA TODAY Sports

The Bears’ playoff hopes took a big hit with an uninspiring 21-13 loss to the Green Bay Packers in Week 15. They have now lost three games in a row and five of their last six games, and the seemingly annual speculation over head coach Lovie Smith’s job status is now going.

Week 15 Grade: D+

8 of 33

Cincinnati Bengals

Eric Hartline-USA TODAY Sports

There’s something to be said for taking care of the teams you’re supposed to beat, and the Bengals did that against the Philadelphia Eagles with a decisive 34-13 win in Week 15.

Week 15 Grade: B+

9 of 33

Cleveland Browns

Ron Schwane-USA TODAY Sports

The Browns seemed to have a small advantage over the Washington Redskins with quarterback Robert Griffin III sidelined last week, but it was not to be as they were outdone fairly decisively on the stat sheet and lost 38-21.

Week 15 Grade: D+

10 of 33

Dallas Cowboys

Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports

The Cowboys beat the Pittsburgh Steelers 27-24 in overtime in Week 15 with a solid performance on both sides of the ball, and now are firmly in the NFC playoff picture with an 8-6 record.

Week 15 Grade: B+

11 of 33

Denver Broncos

Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports

The Broncos extended their winning streak to nine with a 34-17 victory over the Baltimore Ravens last Sunday, and they look to be a serious contender to represent the AFC in the Super Bowl right now.

Week 15 Grade: A-

12 of 33

Detroit Lions

Matt Kartozian-USA TODAY Sports

The Lions look to be mailing it in at this point after a 38-10 loss to the Arizona Cardinals in Week 15 brought their losing streak to six.

Week 15 Grade: D-

13 of 33

Green Bay Packers

Rob Grabowski-USA TODAY Sports

The Packers clinched the NFC North by beating the Chicago Bears 21-13 in Week 15, and they have now won eight of their last nine games to vault themselves toward the top of NFC.

Week 15 Grade: A

14 of 33

Houston Texans

Thomas Campbell-USA TODAY Sports

Houston clinched the AFC South and took a big step toward securing a top seed in the AFC with a 29-17 win over theIndianapolis Colts last week. A win over the Denver Broncos early in the season may be a decisive factor in who secures a first-round bye in the playoffs.

Week 15 Grade: B+

15 of 33

Indianapolis Colts

Thomas Campbell-USA TODAY Sports

The Colts are one of the best stories in the league this year, but a 29-17 loss to the Houston Texans last week ended their chances to win an improbable division title.

Week 15 Grade: C-

16 of 33

Jacksonville Jaguars

Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports

Simply put, the Jaguars are one of the league’s most dismal franchises and a 24-3 loss in Week 15 to the Miami Dolphins is further evidence.

Week 15 Grade: D

17 of 33

Kansas City Chiefs

Kelley L. Cox-USA TODAY Sports

Things are not going well in Kansas City this season, and being shut out by the Oakland Raiders and putting up just over 100 yards of total offense last Sunday is the latest indicator.

Week 15 Grade: F

18 of 33

Miami Dolphins

Robert Mayer-USA TODAY Sports

The Dolphins beat the Jacksonville Jaguars 24-3 last Sunday, and with the New York Jets’ loss last Monday night they still have some faint playoff hopes with a 6-8 record.

Week 15 Grade: C

19 of 33

Minnesota Vikings

Scott Rovak-USA TODAY Sports

The Vikings have been one of the most surprising teams in the league this year, and they kept themselves in the NFC playoff race with a 36-22 win over the St. Louis Rams in Week 15 to push their record to 8-6 on the season.

Week 15 Grade: B

20 of 33

New England Patriots

Greg M. Cooper-USA TODAY Sports

Losing to the San Francisco 49ers is certainly nothing to be ashamed of, but simply looking at the final score (41-34) does not offer the context of a 28-point second half comeback by the Patriots before they finally lost a tough home game.

Week 15 Grade: B-

21 of 33

New Orleans Saints

John David Mercer-USA TODAY Sports

The Saints don’t have any real hope of making the playoffs at this point, but they showed their potential with a 41-0 domination of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in Week 15.

Week 15 Grade: A

22 of 33

New York Giants

Daniel Shirey-USA TODAY Sports

The Giants laid an egg on the road in Week 15, being shut out 34-0 by theAtlanta Falcons. It’s too early to count them out of anything given their recent history of late season surges, but they had a chance to assert themselves in the NFC playoff race and failed.

Week 15 Grade: D-

23 of 33

New York Jets

Debby Wong-USA TODAY Sports

The Jets’ faint playoff hopes officially game to an end with a 14-10 loss to the Tennessee Titans last Monday night. Now the speculation over the job status of head coach Rex Ryan will begin in earnest.

Week 15 Grade: D

24 of 33

Oakland Raiders

Kelley L. Cox-USA TODAY Sports

Teams should never have to apologize for winning, but the Raiders came close with a 15-0 win over the Kansas City Chiefs in Week 15.

Week 15 Grade: C

25 of 33

Philadelphia Eagles

Eric Hartline-USA TODAY Sports

The Eagles are simply playing out the string at this point, and their 34-13 loss to the Cincinnati Bengals last week is the latest evidence of a team that is simply overmatched. The countdown to the firing of head coach Andy Reid can now begin, if it hasn’t already started.

Week 15 Grade: D

26 of 33

Pittsburgh Steelers

Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports

Pittsburgh’s playoff hopes took a hit with a 27-24 overtime loss to the Dallas Cowboys last Sunday, as they have now lost two straight games with Ben Roethlisberger back under center and four of their last five games overall.

Week 15 Grade: C-

27 of 33

St. Louis Rams

Jeff Curry-USA TODAY Sports

The Rams’ playoff hopes virtually ended with their 36-22 loss to the Minnesota Vikings in Week 15, dropping their record to 6-7-1 this season. But head coach Jeff Fisher does seem to have things back on a good track here.

Week 15 Grade: C-

28 of 33

San Diego Chargers

Jake Roth-USA TODAY Sports

The Chargers lost 31-7 at home to the Carolina Panthers in Week 15, dropping their record this season to 5-9. Head coach Norv Turner most surely has two games left in his tenure.

Week 15 Grade: D

29 of 33

San Francisco 49ers

Cary Edmondson-USA TODAY Sports

The 49ers re-asserted themselves as a Super Bowl contender with a 41-34 win over the New England Patriots last Sunday night, showing good resilience after blowing a 28-point lead.

Week 15 Grade: B+

30 of 33

Seattle Seahawks

Kevin Hoffman-USA TODAY Sports

The Seahawks dominated the Buffalo Bills 50-17 in Week 15, and have now outscored their last two opponents 108-17. Quarterback Russell Wilson is a darkhorse candidate for Rookie of the Year right now.

Week 15 Grade: A

31 of 33

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Derick Hingle-USA TODAY Sports

Tampa Bay was dominated on the road by the New Orleans Saints in Week 15, losing 41-0 to bring their losing streak to four games and effectively ending any playoff hopes they had.

Week 15 Grade: F

32 of 33

Tennessee Titans

Phil Sears-USA TODAY Sports

Somebody had to win last Monday night’s game, and the New York Jets simply refused to do so. The Titans deserve some credit for putting one in the win column at this stage of a dismal season.

Week 15 Grade: C-

33 of 33

Washington Redskins

Ron Schwane-USA TODAY Sports

The Redskins were without quarterback Robert Griffin III (knee) against the Cleveland Browns last Sunday, but fellow rookie Kirk Cousins topped 300 yards through the air to help keep the team’s playoffs aspirations in sight with a fairly decisive 38-21 win.

Week 15 Grade: B+

Around the Web