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A five-minute guide to NFL Week 13

One of the two teams from February's Super Bowl, Joe Burrow's Cincinnati Bengals, may be taking aim at another run of December success. (Wade Payne/Associated Press)

While any hopes of a return to the Super Bowl have all but disappeared for the defending champion Los Angeles Rams, the same is not true for their opponent this past February.

The Cincinnati Bengals are quietly making a climb back toward the top of the AFC, winning three in a row without Joe Burrow’s favorite receiver, Ja’Marr Chase. Notably, an offensive line that allowed Burrow to be sacked 30 times in the first nine games has allowed only three sacks in the past two.

The Bengals (7-4) have won seven of their past nine, and counting them out seems ill-advised. Chase is listed as questionable to return Sunday when Cincinnati has a date with Kansas City in a rematch of the AFC championship game. Here is a quick look at that matchup and all the rest on the Week 13 schedule.

All times Eastern

Byes: Cardinals, Panthers

Thursday

Bills (8-3) at Patriots (6-5), 8:15 p.m., Prime Video: Buffalo faces New England with the Patriots uncharacteristically residing in the AFC East cellar. Buffalo needed — and got — a big game from Ed Oliver on Thanksgiving in Detroit. Over his past three games, Oliver has generated 19 pressures, seven more than any other player since Week 10, according to Next Gen Stats. Josh Allen and his sore elbow face a Patriots defense led by Matthew Judon, who leads the NFL with 13 sacks.

Sunday

Steelers (4-7) at Falcons (5-7), 1 p.m.: Atlanta’s run defense let it down against Washington on Sunday in a game it could have won. The Commanders rushed for 176 yards on 37 carries, with 11 of the team’s 20 first downs gained on the ground. Pittsburgh is trying to avoid finishing with Mike Tomlin’s first losing season in 16 years as coach. It can afford only one more loss in that quest.

Broncos (3-8) at Ravens (7-4), 1 p.m.: Baltimore is more of an enigma than Denver, playing like an AFC contender at times and struggling at others. The Ravens led by two scores in the fourth quarter in three of their four losses, and they led by 10 at halftime in the other. But there’s a bit of good news: Their next five games are against teams with losing records.

Packers (4-8) at Bears (3-9), 1 p.m.: Green Bay barely remains mathematically alive, but Aaron Rodgers plans to play despite rib and thumb injuries that seem to make this the perfect time for Green Bay to see just what it has in backup Jordan Love, the former first-round draft pick. Rodgers turned 39 on Friday, and Love led the team on two strong drives Sunday night against Philadelphia.

Jaguars (4-7) at Lions (4-7), 1 p.m.: Maybe Jacksonville’s Doug Pederson-Trevor Lawrence partnership is starting to click? Against the Ravens on Sunday, Lawrence had his first game with 300-plus passing yards, three-plus touchdown passes and no interceptions. He also had a career best 129.8 passer rating.

Browns (4-7) at Texans (1-9-1), 1 p.m.: Deshaun Watson is back from suspension and will make his debut for Cleveland. His former team, Houston, no doubt is looking ahead, perhaps to the chance to start over at quarterback with Alabama’s Bryce Young.

Jets (7-4) at Vikings (9-2), 1 p.m.: How much does Minnesota’s Kirk Cousins love having receivers running crossing routes? A lot. Against New England’s defense last week, all three of his touchdown passes targeted a wide receiver on a crossing route, and according to NFL Research, no quarterback has had more completions this season on crossing routes than Cousins, with 50.

Commanders (7-5) at Giants (7-4), 1 p.m.: Washington’s 6-1 record in its past seven games is the team’s best stretch since it won seven in a row during Robert Griffin III’s rookie season in 2012. Washington’s win Sunday over Atlanta, coupled with Seattle’s loss, put Washington in line for the NFC’s seventh and final playoff spot. A win over New York would put the Commanders more comfortably inside the playoff picture.

Titans (7-4) at Eagles (10-1), 1 p.m.: Philadelphia’s Jalen Hurts is making an MVP case, with his latest argument coming in prime time Sunday against Green Bay. He ran for 157 yards, the fourth-highest rushing total for a quarterback in the regular season since 2000. (Only Justin Fields’s 178 yards in Week 9 and two Michael Vick games from his Falcons years are higher.) Repeating that performance will be harder against Tennessee’s defense.

Seahawks (6-5) at Rams (3-8), 4:05 p.m.: Seattle has allowed touchdowns after nine of its 15 giveaways this season, but it’s only a game behind surging San Francisco in the NFC West after a two-game skid. The Super Bowl champion Rams are last in the division and may not have injured Matthew Stafford back for the remainder of the season.

Dolphins (8-3) at 49ers (7-4), 4:05 p.m.: Against Houston on Sunday, Miami’s Tua Tagovailoa, an MVP front-runner, completed 18 of 25 passes for 262 yards and a touchdown — most of his production — when targeting the seams. He will face a San Francisco defense that hasn’t allowed a point in six quarters and has given up no points in the second half of its past four games.

Chargers (6-4) at Raiders (4-7), 4:25 p.m.: Josh Jacobs’s latest accomplishment for Las Vegas was becoming the only player since at least 1950 with 225 or more rushing yards and 70 or more receiving yards in a game. By the end of the day Sunday, he had passed Derrick Henry as the league’s leading rusher (1,159 yards to Henry’s 1,048).

Chiefs (9-2) at Bengals (7-4), 4:25 p.m.: Kansas City has had 10 different players with one or more touchdown catches — most in the NFL — but let us pause for a moment to appreciate the significance of the contributions of Travis Kelce, whose name gets lost in MVP conversations that are typically quarterback-centric. Kelce has as many or more receiving touchdowns by himself than 10 teams have overall.

Colts (4-7-1) at Cowboys (8-3), 8:20 p.m., NBC: If the season ended today, all four NFC East teams (with a combined record of 32-12) would qualify for the playoffs, a first for any division and a remarkable turnaround from last year at this time, when its teams were 21-24. It is also the second division since realignment in 2002 (joining the AFC North of 2014) in which all four teams have won at least seven games through Week 12. Dallas is clicking at just the right time. With an inexperienced coach in Jeff Saturday (to put it mildly), Indianapolis is still a work in progress (to put it even more mildly).

Monday

Saints (4-8) at Buccaneers (5-6), 8:15 p.m., ESPN: Add to Tampa Bay’s miseries, which include an offense that hasn’t improved under coordinator Byron Leftwich, poor clock mismanagement by Coach Todd Bowles. Voilà, a chance to basically wrap up the NFC South title slipped away Sunday, and now a division opponent that has plagued Tom Brady as a Buccaneer awaits.

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