12. San Francisco 49ers
Another team that kept their hopes alive heading into Week 18 is the San Francisco 49ers. At home against the Houston Texans, the 49ers were without Jimmy Garoppolo meaning they were putting their hopes in rookie Trey Lance — and he didn’t disappoint.
Lance had 249 yards passing and 31 on the ground with two touchdowns. Running back Elijah Mitchell added 119 yards rushing as both Deebo Samuel and Brandon Aiyuk each had big games.
Defensively, they continued to show they can hang with anyone as Fred Warner had 15 tackles and they held Davis Mills to just 163 yards. They will head to Los Angeles next week for a huge game against the Rams as both teams have something on the line.
11. Los Angeles Chargers
After losing in back-to-back weeks ‚— including an inexcusable loss to the Houston Texans in Week 16 — the Los Angeles Chargers were able to get back on track with a 34-13 win against an AFC West rival, the Denver Broncos.
It was never much of a contest either as the Chargers jumped out to an early lead at home as Justin Herbert went for 237 yards with two touchdowns. They spent much of the second half nursing their lead as they were able to improve to 9-7 on the season, putting themselves in a great position to make the playoffs.
Their final game will be against another divisional rival as they head to Las Vegas to take on the Raiders, who are also coming off a big win to keep their hopes alive.