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Welcome to the Tuesday edition of the Pick Six Newsletter!

With just four weeks left to play in the season, you'd think that the NFL playoff picture would be clearing up at this point, but instead, it's somehow gotten more confusing. The Cardinals had a chance to become the first team to clinch a playoff berth Monday night, but they blew it, which means exactly zero teams have clinched a berth through 14 weeks. 

If that sounds crazy, that's because it is. This year marks just the third time since 1978 that we haven't seen a single team clinch a playoff berth through 14 weeks. CAN SOMEONE JUST CLINCH A PLAYOFF SPOT ALREADY? I can't handle any more drama. 

Anyway, we'll be covering all the details from the Rams' 30-23 win in today's newsletter, plus we'll be taking a look at Prisco's latest power rankings and my Week 15 picks, so let's get to the rundown. 

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1. Today's show: Recapping the Rams' wild win over Arizona

GLENDALE, ARIZONA - DECEMBER 13: Cooper Kupp #10 of the Los Angeles Rams carries the ball after a reception during the fourth quarter against the Arizona Cardinals at State Farm Stadium on December 13, 2021 in Glendale, Arizona. Christian Petersen/Getty Images

The Rams are right back in the race for the NFC West title after upsetting the Cardinals in Arizona on Monday night. The Rams offense we expected to see all season finally showed up in their 30-23 win. 

The only thing more exciting than the Rams' offensive fireworks was the podcast Ryan Wilson, Will Brinson and I recorded after the game. Here are three key things from the game that we touched on during the podcast:

  • Rams offense gets its groove back. Matthew Stafford was nearly unstoppable in this game, and most importantly for the Rams, he didn't turn the ball over. On a night where he threw for 287 yards, Stafford got everyone involved as Odell Beckham Jr., Cooper Kupp and Van Jefferson all had at least one catch of 40 or more yards AND a touchdown. On Kupp's end, no one has been able to cover him all season and that didn't change in this game with the receiver hauling in 13 passes for 123 yards and a touchdown. 
  • Murray meltdown. Kyler Murray made plenty of huge plays in this game, but those were overshadowed by big mistakes, the two biggest of which came in the form of ugly interceptions. In the first quarter, Murray threw an interception on the goal line after driving Arizona 63 yards. His second miscue came when he threw an interception in his own territory in the third quarter that eventually set up a Rams touchdown. Murray also inexplicably took a sack on the final play of the game when he simply should have spiked the ball, which would have given the Cardinals a few seconds to come up with a final play that might have actually worked. It was a bad night for a player who hasn't had many bad nights this year.  
  • The NFC West race tightens. With their win Monday, not only did the Rams take one big step toward clinching a wild-card berth, but they've now become a serious contender to win the NFC West. With just four weeks left to play, the Rams are only one game behind Arizona, which means if the Cardinals slip up at all in their final four games, Los Angeles could be there to steal the division title away. 

Besides those three things, we also spent some serious time trying to figure out who's going to make the playoffs out of the NFC. To listen to today's episode -- and to subscribe to the best daily NFL podcast out there -- be sure to click here. You can also watch Monday's episode on YouTube by clicking here.

2. Prisco's Power Rankings heading into Week 15

The Cardinals' loss on Monday night meant Pete Prisco had to re-shuffle the top of his power rankings and that's because Arizona was at the top last week. The top-five teams are actually the exact same as last week, but they're now in a different order.  

With that in mind, here's a look at Prisco's top-five teams heading into Week 15:

  1. Packers
  2. Buccaneers
  3. Patriots
  4. Cardinals
  5. Chiefs

I won't spoil the rest of the Power Rankings here, but I will give you a few nuggets. Here's what has changed since last week: 

  • The biggest jump this week went to the three different teams as the Chargers, Titans and Cowboys all moved up three spots. All three are now on the cusp of cracking the top five with the Chargers at eighth, the Cowboys at seventh and the Titans at sixth.  
  • For the second straight week, the biggest drop in the AFC went to the Las Vegas Raiders. Every year, the Raiders seem to melt down around this time and this year is no different. Following their blowout loss to the Chiefs, Prisco dropped them three spots from 17th to 20th. 
  • The biggest overall tumble in the rankings went to Washington. After watching WFT lose to the Cowboys, Prisco punished the team by dropping it four spots from 15th to 19th.  
  • The most inexplicable move in the rankings went to the Rams, who DROPPED three spots even though they beat the Cardinals. I'm not sure if Pete knows how power rankings work, but when a team beats the No. 1 team, you usually don't drop them any spots, let alone three. 
  • In news that probably won't come as a surprise to anyone: the Jaguars are dead last for the second straight week. I'm starting to think Prisco might be the guy leaking all those negative reports about Urban Meyer. 

If you want to know where your favorite team ended up in Prisco's Week 15 Power Rankings, be sure to click here. If you want to argue with Prisco over his rankings, especially his ranking of the Rams, you can do that on Twitter by clicking here. I argue with him all the time about everything. 

3. Breech's Week 15 picks

Patriots head coach Bill Belichick on the sideline during the Patriots' 14-10 win over the Bills in Buffalo, New York on Dec. 6, 2021. Jamie Germano / USA TODAY NETWORK

It's Tuesday, and that can only mean one thing: It's time for my weekly picks. 

Last week, I managed to go 11-3, but two of those losses shouldn't have even counted because they came in overtime -- I picked the Bengals and Bills to win -- so I'm going to tell myself that I actually went 13-1 for Week 14 and since I went 13-1, I have high hopes for this week. 

With that in mind, here are three of my picks for Week 15.  

  • New England (+2) at Indianapolis: As we know, Bill Belichick tries to take away the thing you do best and the thing Indy does best is run the ball. The Colts are 7-0 this year when they rush for 125 yards or more and 0-6 when they rush for less than 125 yards. Belichick is likely going to take away the run and make Carson Wentz beat him, and based on what I've seen from Wentz this season, I don't think that's going to happen. PICK: Patriots 20-17 over Colts. 
  • Dallas (-10.5) at New York GiantsIf there's one team Dak Prescott has absolutely owned in his career, it's the New York Giants. Since 2017, he's 8-0 against the Giants and the Cowboys have won those games by an average of 13.5 points per game. During that span, he's thrown 19 touchdowns to just three interceptions against them. Also, this is arguably the best Cowboys defense he's played with over that timeframe and the defense will likely be going up against Giants backup QB Mike Glennon. I don't like New York's chances. PICK: Cowboys 30-17 over Giants. 
  • Green Bay (-5) at Baltimore: The Ravens offense has been an absolute disaster for five straight weeks now and I can't imagine they're going to be much better this week. If Lamar Jackson plays, he's likely going to be hobbled by his ankle, and if he doesn't play, I don't think Tyler Huntley is going to have very much success against the Packers defense. I know Aaron Rodgers is injured, but he's been playing with a hurt toe for more than a month now and it doesn't seem to be slowing him down. PICK: Packers 31-24 over Ravens. 

To check out the rest of my picks for Week 15, be sure to click here

4. One thing we learned about each team in Week 14

Now that all 14 games from Week 14 have been played, CBS Sports' Cody Benjamin decided to wade through the aftermath to figure out what we learned about each team.

Here's a look at what we learned about five teams: 

  • Cardinals: They don't look like the NFC favorites anymore. "For a while, they were. And they're still dangerous! Kyler Murray is an undying highlight reel. But we'd bet on the Packers or Bucs over them right now, fresh off their prime-time home loss to the Rams."
  • Bengals: They seem to be losing steam. "Yes, Joe Burrow nearly played hero by leading a comeback effort against the 49ers, but they're now down a key piece (Trey Hendrickson) on defense and have endured emotionally draining defeats in successive weeks."
  • Chiefs: They seem to be back"Beating up on the Raiders gives them six straight wins going into Week 15. Oh, and Patrick Mahomes finally looked smooth out of the gate, too, pairing with their big-play defense to dominate."
  • SteelersBig Ben still appears to have some fight in him. "Does that mean he deserves another go-round in 2022? No. But give the old man some credit for pushing Pittsburgh to the finish line, even with a shoddy line and wideouts who can't catch or celebrate at the right times."
  • 49ers: They feel like a lock for the playoffs. "A wild-card spot now feels like a near-certainty for them. They've been steadily hot at the right times for a while now, in large part due to Kyle Shanahan ensuring Deebo Samuel powers the rushing attack."

If you want to see the one thing we learned about every other team, you can check out Cody's entire story by clicking here.

5. NFL hit hard by COVID

Nov 7, 2021; Inglewood, California, USA; Los Angeles Rams cornerback Jalen Ramsey (5) during the game against the Tennessee Titans at SoFi Stadium. The Titans defeated the Rams 28-16. Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

The NFL hasn't had to reschedule any games this year due to COVID, but the ongoing pandemic could still have an impact on the playoff race. If you need proof of that, just check out what happened Monday.

The NFL announced that 37 players have been placed on the reserve/COVID-19 list, which are the most during any single week this season. Here's a look several key players who could miss action in Week 15 due to a positive COVID test. 

  • Chargers LT Rashawn Slater. The Chargers might not have their starting left tackle for Thursday's showdown with the Chiefs. According to multiple reports, Slater is vaccinated, so if he records two negative tests taken at least 24 hours apart, he would have a chance to play this week. But with the Chargers playing Thursday, that seems highly unlikely.  
  • Rams CB Jalen Ramsey. The Rams star corner actually missed last night's game after testing positive Monday morning, and he could also end up missing their Week 15 game against the Seahawks.
  • Washington DT Jonathan Allen. The defensive tackle, who is arguably having the best season of his career, likely won't be able to play this week in Washington's NFC East showdown against the Eagles. However, Allen is vaccinated, so there's at least a chance he could suit up.
  • Dolphins have no running backs. Phillip Lindsay was placed on the COVID list, which is notable because Miami running backs Myles Gaskin and Salvon Ahmed are already on the list, which means the Dolphins don't have a lot depth right now at the position. Safety Jevon Holland was also added to the COVID list Monday. 
  • Chiefs WR Josh Gordon. Although he hasn't made a huge impact this year, Gordon did catch a touchdown pass in Week 14. Like Slater, it's unlikely Gordon will be able to play this week with his game being Thursday. 
  • Vikings RB Alexander Mattison. It's a good thing Dalvin Cook has returned from injury, because the Vikings might not have Mattison for Monday's big game against the Bears after he was placed on the COVID list. 

Due to the rapid spread of COVID, the NFL sent out a memo Monday letting teams know that any player who wants to keep their vaccination status will have to get a COVID booster shot by Dec. 27. 

6. Rapid-fire roundup

It's been a busy 24 hours in the NFL, and since it's nearly impossible to keep track of everything that happened, I went ahead and put together a roundup for you. 

  • Super Bowl headed for Las Vegas. The NFL owners are going to reveal the location of Super Bowl LVIII on Wednesday and the host city is expected to be Las Vegas. That Super Bowl will be played in February 2024 and will air on CBS. For more details why Vegas will likely be getting the NFL's biggest game, be sure to click here. If you need me, I'll be booking my hotel now. 
  • Urban Meyer expected to survive the season. Jaguars owner Shad Khan made it pretty clear that he won't be making an in-season move with Meyer. Khan did an interview Monday night and you can read more about it by clicking here
  • Derrick Henry could be back before end of season. The Titans got some good news this week. According to NFL.com, Henry's rehab is going so well that he could potentially return in Week 18 if Tennessee is facing a do-or-die situation. If the Titans have already clinched a playoff spot, then Henry will almost certainly be ready to return in the playoffs. 
  • Daniel Jones likely out Week 15. The Giants QB didn't play in Week 14 due to a neck injury, and it appears that injury is going to keep him out for at least one more week. According to the Athletic, Jones is likely going to miss Sunday's game against the Cowboys, which would pave the way for Mike Glennon to make his third consecutive start. The Giants have been outscored 57-30 in Glennon's two starts, which were both losses. 
  • Cowboys won't have left tackle on field in Week 15. The Cowboys won't have left tackle Tyron Smith this week. Smith injured his ankle against Washington on Sunday, and the injury was bad enough that. the Cowboys ruled him out for their Week 15 battle with the Giants a full six days before the game. 
  • Ex-Bears receiver sentenced to three years in jailFormer Bears receiver Josh Bellamy, who spent eight years in the NFL, will be spending the next three years of his life behind bars. Bellamy was sentenced to three years in prison for defrauding the government out of $1.2 million in COVID relief funds.