NFL Week 12 Predictions: Struggling Teams That Will Get a Much-Needed Win

Michael Prunka@MichaelPrunkaCorrespondent INovember 21, 2012

New Orleans Saints quarterback Drew Brees.
New Orleans Saints quarterback Drew Brees.Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images

With a few weeks left in the NFL season, the playoff picture is starting to come together. As we head into Week 12, there are a handful of struggling teams that will get that much-needed win.

The Washington Redskins are one of three 4-6 teams in the NFC. It’s a long shot, but there is postseason hope for the 'Skins.

After a 31-6 blowout victory over the Philadelphia Eagles, a strong outing on the road against the Dallas Cowboys on Thanksgiving will certainly help them keep the momentum rolling.

So long as they don’t manage to dig themselves into the same penalty hole they did last week in Philly, the 'Skins have a good chance at snagging a road victory against their longtime rivals.

Robert Griffin III and Alfred Morris will lead the running game right over the Cowboys’ defense. Expect a close game with the Skins ultimately taking the victory and moving one step closer to a possible playoff run.

The Pittsburgh Steelers are another team in need of a win. They’re coming off a disappointing 13-10 loss to their divisional foe Baltimore Ravens.

Their road game against the Cleveland Browns shouldn’t have been much of a challenge but the status of Ben Roethlisberger should make this game a bit trickier for the Steelers.

Even without Roethlisberger, this game can be won almost entirely by the Steelers’ defense. They’ve proven time and time again that they’re capable of shutting down the opposition’s passing and running game.

Five of the Browns’ eight losses have been one-possession games. They’ve been good at keeping their games close this season, but the Steelers won’t let it happen.

The Browns are going to have a lot of trouble moving the ball down the field. It won’t take much offensive output from the Steelers for them to take a commanding lead.

A decisive victory on the road in Cleveland may be enough to lead the Steelers to an important win next week when they travel to Baltimore, making this a must-win situation.

It took a four-game losing streak at the beginning of the season, but the New Orleans Saints are back on track. They’ve won five of their last six outings and look to bring their record to 6-5 when they host the San Francisco 49ers.

This matchup will decide which is better—Drew Brees and the Saints’ passing game or the Niners’ excellent defense.

With the home field advantage, the Saints may be slowed by the 49ers' defense, but those 49ers will never stop Drew Brees and his knack for finding his receivers.

The Saints have scored over 30 points in six of their 10 games thus far. The 49ers will most definitely hold them off the scoreboards more than they’re used to, but they’ll still manage to come out with a close win.

The wild card in this game is going to be whether or not the Saints’ defense can hold the 49ers’ running game. They don’t have to stop every drive from the Niners, but they can’t let the Niners match them touchdown-for-touchdown.

Because the Saints fight hard from the very start, they should be able to edge out the 49ers in a tough game. It won’t come easy, but New Orleans should take a much-needed win at home Sunday.



Michael Prunka is a Bleacher Report Featured Columnist and Sports Writing Intern. Stay up to date with him by liking his Facebook page and following him on Twitter.


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