Clutch Performers

Stafford leads Week 14 Castrol Clutch Performers

The Washington Redskins' Chris Thompson, New York Jets' Bilal Powell, Detroit Lions' Matthew Stafford, Tampa Bay Buccaneers' Keith Tandy and Miami Dolphins' Andrew Franks each had the strength to come through during a key moment and contribute to wins during Week 14.

Thanks to those strong performances, each player is up for Castrol EDGE Clutch Performer of the Week honors. This is a deeper look at the significance of those conquests.

Chris Thompson, Washington Redskins

Strong stats to consider:
» This was Thompson's first rushing TD since Week 1.
» Washington ran the ball on 50 percent of its plays, that's a season high. The team's also 6-0 this season when they run the ball on at least 42 percent of their plays.

Power of the moment: With just two minutes remaining in the game and down by one, Washington needed to win in a tight NFC Wild Card race. With great blocking in front of him, Thompson ran it in to win the game for Washington, keeping their playoff hopes very much alive.

Bilal Powell, New York Jets

Strong stats to consider:
» Powell had 145 yards and two TDs on the day. It's his second career game with at least 100 rushing yards.
» The Niners were up 17-3 in the third quarter. The Jets scored 20 unanswered points in the second half and overtime to win the game.

Power of the moment:Matt Forte has been a bit of workhorse for the Jets this season. So when he left the game with an injury, Powell took the lead on the ground game and didn't look back. He not only ran for 145 yards, but he scored the game-winner in OT.

Matthew Stafford, Detroit Lions

Strong stats to consider:
» Since Jim Bob Cooter was promoted to offensive coordinator (Week 8, 2015), Stafford is 15-7, is averaging 265.6 yards per game, has a passer rating of 100.8 and has thrown 42 TDs and just 11 INTs.
» Stafford now has the most fourth quarter comebacks in asingle season (8). The previous record was Peyton Manning with seven in 2009. Jim Caldwell was the head coach on both of those teams.

Power of the moment: After throwing two INTs in the fourth quarter, Stafford would not be denied on his run into the end zone. The Lions are now solely on top of the NFC North. They haven't won that division since 1993.

Keith Tandy, Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Strong stats to consider:
» The Bucs D has come alive in recent weeks. They've had multiple takeaways in five consecutive games and have held opponents to less than 20 points in four of their last five games.
» Since Week 10, the Buccaneers have allowed the fewest points-per-game in the NFL and have had the most takeaways.

Power of the moment: After a slow start, the Bucs are battling for the NFC South. Tandy stepped up huge in this game, recording nine tackles and snagging the clinching INT.

Andrew Franks, Miami Dolphins

Strong stats to consider:
» The Miami Dolphins have fought their way into the playoff hunt after a slow start to the season. The Dolphins are 7-1 since starting 1-4.
» The Dolphins have also scored a TD on their opening possesion three times this season.

Power of the moment: The Dolphins had been battling the struggling but tough Arizona Cardinals all day. With just one second left in the tied game, Franks nailed a 21-yard field goal in a typical Miami downpour to win the game.

Follow Daniel Williams on Twitter @_danielwilliams.

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