What We Saw: Week 12

The What We Saw team recaps everything you missed from Week 12

Rams @ Chiefs

Final Score: Chiefs 26, Rams 10

Writer: Mike Miklius (@SIRL0INofBEEF on Twitter)


With Matthew Stafford out this week, the Rams came into this game as the largest regular-season underdog of any reigning Super Bowl champ in NFL history, and the final score proved Vegas right, as they so often seem to be. So what happened in this one? The Rams actually hung in for a while, only allowing one Chiefs touchdown in the first quarter: a 90-yard drive that relied on a 39-yard Travis Kelce catch-and-run that found the endzone. The two teams traded field goals before Kansas City made it 13-3 at halftime. The Rams struggled on offense, but their defense gave them a real chance–regularly slowing down the Chiefs’ attack. Kansas City came out of halftime with another touchdown drive ending in an Isiah Pacheco run from three yards out. The Rams responded–thanks to their passing game finally showing some signs of life–and went 75 yards to post their own touchdown on a fourth-and-two pass from Bryce Perkins to Van Jefferson. The Chiefs drove back down the length of the field, but Patrick Mahomes threw a red zone interception, giving the Rams one last gasp. Bryce Perkins threw an interception, followed by a Chiefs field goal. Roll that back one more time: Perkins threw another interception followed by one last field goal, giving us our final score of 26-10. Here’s everything I saw in this one.


Los Angeles Rams




Bryce Perkins: 13/23, 100 Yards, TD, 2 INT | 9 Carries, 44 Yards

Riley Dixon: 1/1, 6 Yards


Bryce Perkins was not asked to do much early; the Rams hoped to win this one on the strength of their defense and rushing attack. Perkins had five pass attempts at halftime, and one of them was called back via penalty. The punter had more passing yards at halftime–thanks to a successful fake punt–than Perkins did. So how did he look when he was used? Perkins ran well in the first half, showing his legs were a legit weapon. He reminded me a bit of Taysom Hill in that he is a big body that isn’t afraid of contact. Perkins as a passer was less convincing. It looked like the Rams were afraid to let Perkins throw, and he didn’t show much to prove them wrong. He was clean until late in the game–when Los Angeles entered desperation mode. Perkins’ first pick came just two plays after a Mahomes pick that gave the Rams life again. He was looking for a double-covered Van Jefferson, but underthrew him. The second pick was tipped–so I won’t completely blame Perkins. The biggest takeaway here seems to be that Perkins behind center likely craters any value this passing attack had. I’d stay away.



Running Back


Kyren Williams: 11 Carries, 35 Yards | 3 Targets, 3 Receptions, 25 Yards

Cam Akers: 8 Carries, 37 Yards


Cam Akers had a nice 15-yard run to start the team’s second drive, but he was mostly bottled up. He looks like just another guy to me since his injury, and clearly the Rams thought so as well–doing all they could to move him and then giving Williams more carries and targets.

Kyren Williams was similarly bottled up today, with his best run coming on a nine-yard gain in the third quarter. He caught all three of his passes and looks like he could be a threat in the passing game given the lack of other weapons here. Williams saw his biggest workload to date and this is probably the biggest takeaway here. This just isn’t an offense I can get excited about with the Rams already out of the playoff race.


Wide Receiver/Tight End


Van Jefferson: 7 Targets, 3 Receptions, 29 Yards, TD

Tutu Atwell: 2 Targets, 2 Receptions, 23 Yards

Brycen Hopkins: 2 Targets, 1 Reception, 12 Yards

Jacob Harris: 1 Target, 1 Reception, 6 Yards

Brandon Powell: 2 Targets, 2 Receptions, 6 Yards

Ben Skowronek: 4 Targets, 2 Receptions, 5 Yards

Lance McCutcheon: 3 Targets


Van Jefferson was the main weapon for the Rams today and Perkins’ favorite target. They nearly had a great hook-up early, but Jefferson was just slightly out of bounds. His touchdown came from seven yards out when LA needed it most and gave the Rams one last hope. Given this showing, though, I can’t recommend any receiver here.

Allen Robinson will need foot surgery and is out for the remainder of the year. He can be dropped in redraft leagues.


Kansas City Chiefs




Patrick Mahomes: 27/42, 320 Yards, TD, INT | 4 Carries, 36 Yards


Patrick Mahomes was mostly his usual great self, making the quarterback position look effortless. When Mahomes is on, he looks like he just thinks faster than everyone around him. He doesn’t ever appear to panic, and he knows when to scramble–and then slide to avoid taking any contact. Mahomes’ touchdown was actually mostly thanks to Travis Kelce, but we’ll get to that when we talk about him below. Mahomes did struggle toward the end of the game. He threw a pass in the red zone where I struggled to see who he was even looking for. It was a mistake that the announcers would have crushed any other QB for making. Mahomes again struggled on the team’s next drive, seeming just a bit off. Even the best make mistakes occasionally, and the good far outweighed the bad here. Keep rolling with Mahomes.


Running Back


Isiah Pacheco: 22 Carries, 69 Yards, TD | 1 Target, 1 Reception, 17 Yards

Ronald Jones: 4 Carries, 12 Yards | 1 Target, 1 Reception, 22 Yards


Isiah Pacheco was the workhorse for KC today, eating up 22 of the 26 carries. Pacheco plays well enough to keep this job and looked good despite his low yards per carry. Kansas City has never targeted the running back much and Pacheco is no different. We are more counting on scores here to help boost Pacheco to bigger days. Either way, I don’t see this becoming some highly profitable backfield. It’s just another good offense (Buffalo) that doesn’t want to give us a fantasy stud. Still, Pacheco is the only guy to watch here.



Ronald Jones saw a few carries and had a nice reception, but he was clearly just spelling Pacheco. There’s some value in this role, but not enough to use–just a handcuff.


Wide Receiver/Tight End


Travis Kelce: 8 Targets, 4 Receptions, 57 Yards, TD

Marquez Valdes-Scantling: 5 Targets, 4 Receptions, 56 Yards

JuJu Smith-Schuster: 3 Targets, 3 Receptions, 38 Yards

Skyy Moore: 6 Targets, 5 Receptions, 36 Yards, 1 Fumble (Lost)

Justin Watson: 2 Targets, 2 Receptions, 26 Yards

Jody Fortson: 3 Targets, 2 Receptions, 26 Yards

Jerick McKinnon: 6 Targets, 3 Receptions, 26 Yards

Noah Gray: 2 Targets, 2 Receptions, 16 Yards


Patrick Mahomes spread the ball out to ten players, but Travis Kelce still made his mark on the game. In the first half, he made his play of the game. He caught the ball over the middle and proceeded to dart past tacklers for a 39-yard score. I thought he was stopped at least twice on the play, but he just kept running forward against a seemingly helpless defense. Kelce was otherwise mostly quiet in the box score. He made a great block on Ronald Jones‘ 22-yard reception to spring him loose. Kelce now has 12 touchdowns on the season.



Skyy Moore fumbled a punt early in the game, and I was worried he would end up in the dog house–Andy Reid went with a different return man on the next punt. That worry was unfounded, and Moore made himself known on the next drive. On the first play of the next series, Moore made a nice leaping catch for a big gain. On the very next play, he made a huge gain down the sideline that was called back. Moore shows explosiveness, but he is still looking for his role in the offense. It was always crazy to think he would step in and immediately be Tyreek Hill, but Moore has the talent to develop into more.

Marquez Valdes Scantling made a few nice catches and looked great as a big-play weapon, but he still shows inconsistency–the same thing that dogged him in Green Bay. This was a good day for MVS when fantasy managers think ‘okay, this is it. He’s about to do it!!!’ The explosiveness is real, but there are a lot of mouths to feed here and MVS doesn’t stand out enough. I don’t see him ever being Tyreek Hill.

Juju Smith Schuster made a few catches and was another weapon today to help move the chains. He has been on a good run lately, but he mostly strikes me as just a guy–a depth piece in a crowded receiver room and one the Chiefs won’t retain next season as he chases a payday.

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