NFL Week 13 winners and losers: Tyreek Hill's MVP case, 49ers' statement, Aaron Rodgers' return

Here are all the winners and losers from Week 13 in the NFL

Samuel, Hill,, Rodgers

Tyreek Hill continued to make his case for MVP, Deebo Samuel and the 49ers made a statement and Aaron Rodgers’ return seems unlikely after another Jets loss.

Another Sunday, another chaotic slate of NFL action.

There were several thrilling games in Week 13, from the Houston Texans' last-second win over the Denver Broncos to the Detroit Lions outlasting the New Orleans Saints. In a battle of heavyweights, the San Francisco 49ers blew out the Philadelphia Eagles in a rematch of the NFC Championship Game.

Then, of course, there was whatever happened between the Los Angeles Chargers and New England Patriots -- not thrilling, but compelling for several reasons.

Here are all the winners and losers from Sunday's Week 13 action:

Winner: Tyreek Hill's MVP candidacy

Rain didn't slow down the Miami Dolphins in Week 13.

Facing inclement conditions at FedEx Field, Tyreek Hill and Co. raced past the Washington Commanders in a 45-15 blowout win. The difference was 31-7 at halftime, as the second half was essentially just 30 minutes of garbage time.

Hill, a candidate for league MVP, further strengthened his case with a five-catch, 157-yard and two-touchdown performance. His two scores came on deep throws from Tua Tagovailoa, first from 78 yards and then from 60 yards. Hill's game-changing speed was on full display as Washington's defense was unable to keep up. With nobody truly emerging in the MVP race, could this be the season where a non-quarterback steals the award?

Winner: 49ers make a statement in hostile rivalry game

There was a lot of talk heading into Sunday's Eagles-49ers game -- and one team backed it up.

San Francisco was dominant throughout the contest, jumping out to a 14-6 lead at halftime and then breaking it open after the break to win 42-19. After getting blown out at the same stadium in last year's NFC title game, the 49ers clearly had extra motivation this time. Deebo Samuel, who talked more than anyone leading up to the game, had a hat trick -- three touchdowns (two receiving, one rushing) -- to go along with 138 total yards.

The game wasn't without controversy, though. 49ers linebacker Dre Greenlaw and Eagles head of security Dom DiSandro (!) were both ejected after a scuffle. There were several unnecessary roughness penalties. The two sides had to be separated on multiple occasions. If we're lucky, this won't be the last meeting between these NFC powerhouses this season.

Loser: Aaron Rodgers' longshot chance at returning

Another New York Jets loss on Sunday should all but confirm that Rodgers won't return this season.

Now 4-8 after falling to the Atlanta Falcons, Robert Saleh's squad doesn't have much left to play for in the final five weeks. The Jets face two playoff hopefuls -- the Houston Texans (7-5) and Miami Dolphins (9-3) -- in their next two games. Tim Boyle, filling in for Zach Wilson, was benched on Sunday in his second start as Saleh turned to Trevor Siemian. Neither player could put together more than a field goal drive in the 13-8 loss.

Rodgers, who was designated to return from IR this week, was always a longshot to play after tearing his Achilles on opening night. The former MVP is back at practice, but there's no reason -- at age 40 -- for Rodgers to rush back.

Winner: Texans continue surprise playoff push

After a narrow loss to the Jacksonville Jaguars last week, the Houston Texans got back on track in Week 13.

C.J. Stroud and Co. picked up a 22-17 win over Russell Wilson and the Denver Broncos. The rookie quarterback went 16 of 27 for 274 yards and a touchdown, while the veteran was 15 of 26 for 186 yards with a touchdown and three interceptions

It was DeMeco Ryans' defense securing the victory though, picking off a Wilson pass in the end zone with 16 seconds to play. Both teams were 6-5 entering Sunday, meaning Houston earned a critical victory for postseason positioning and tiebreaker purposes.

Few expected the Texans to be in this spot before the season -- but upcoming road games against a pair of 4-8 teams (Jets, Titans) could lock up the Texans' first winning season since 2019.

Loser: Starting quarterbacks in New Orleans and Pittsburgh

Injuries took out two starting quarterbacks on Sunday: Kenny Pickett and Derek Carr.

First, in Pittsburgh, Pickett exited with an ankle injury in the first half after an Arizona Cardinals defender landed on him. With the Steelers heading into a short week, it could be Mitch Trubisky starting against the Patriots on Thursday Night Football.

Later, in New Orleans, Carr was carted off late in the Saints' loss after taking a brutal hit. Lions defensive end Bruce Irvin was flagged for roughing the passer, but Carr clearly got the worst of the exchange. He was placed in concussion protocol while also dealing with shoulder and back injuries. The Saints went on to lose the game, 33-28, to fall to 5-7.

Winner: Defense at Gillette Stadium

It was nearly impossible to score in Foxborough on Sunday.

With Bailey Zappe getting his first start of the season, the Patriots' offense was shut out for the second time this year. On the other side, the Chargers mustered just six points on two field goals -- both in the second quarter.

The Patriots actually outgained the Chargers with 257 yards to 241. But Brandon Staley's defense made big plays when it had to -- including two third-down sacks and one fourth-down sack. The six total points scored matched the lowest-scoring NFL game since December of 2018, when the Jaguars beat the Colts 6-0. New England is now 2-10 and in the mix for the No. 1 pick, while Los Angeles is 5-7 with an outside chance at a wild card run.

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