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Top 5 NFL Games to Watch in Week 12

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NFL's Top 5 Games of Week 12

Peyton Manning vs. Tom Brady
Stew Milne-USA TODAY Sports

Besides Thanksgiving, the best part of November if the NFL playoff stretch run. The games get tighter because teams get desperate, which means down-to-the-wire, wild finishes. Of course, the usual divisional rivalry games always provide terrific outcomes and there are plenty of those this month, but there are are also some odd and/or ironic matchups, especially in Week 12 as teams prepare for Turkey Day and the football weekend that follows.

For example, the Indianapolis Colts play the Arizona Cardinals, which is really interesting because ex-Colts coach Bruce Arians is now the main man in the desert and he’ll obviously have some insight as to how to stop Indy’s potent attack. At the same time, Andrew Luck will put his Stanford eduction to good use in getting the Colts prepared for what Arians likes to do on both sides of the ball.

And then of course we’ve got the 14th edition of Peyton Manning vs. Tom Brady on Monday Night Football in a game that has a truckload of subplots, which we’ll get into, but we don’t want to spoil everything up front. Here are the five games you can’t miss in Week 12:

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5. Panthers at Dolphins

Panthers vs Dolphins
Jeremy Brevard-USA TODAY Sports

The Panthers at the Dolphins offers one red-hot team against one that is on the verge of playoff contention and considering Carolina needs to win to keep pace in the NFC North while Miami must win to have any hopes of making the playoffs, we should see plenty of desperate play in this one.

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4. Colts at Cardinals

Colts vs Cardinals
Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports

The Colts at the Cardinals pits Bruce Arians against his old team and things get interesting anytime that happens. Expect Andrew Luck to try and exploit Arians’ defense through familiarity with the coach does the same with Indy’s offense.

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3. Chargers at Chiefs

Chargers vs Chiefs
Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

The Chargers at the Chiefs is a great AFC West showdown because the pressure is on KC to prove its run as a dominant team isn’t over. Meanwhile, San Diego is trying to stay in the thick of the playoff race, so a division win would be huge for the Chargers.

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2. Cowboys at Giants

Cowboys vs Giants
Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports

The Chargers at the Chiefs is a great AFC West showdown because the pressure is on KC to prove its run as a dominant team isn’t over. Meanwhile, San Diego is trying to stay in the thick of the playoff race, so a division win would be huge for the Chargers.

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1. Broncos at Patriots

Broncos vs Patriots
Stew Milne-USA TODAY Sports

The Broncos at the Patriots is a gem of a Sunday Night Football matchup as it pits Peyton Manning against Tom Brady for the 14th time with tons of playoff implications on the line. Put simply, that’s all that need to be said.