With the second half of the season here, certain teams are beginning to separate themselves from the competition. The Vikings and Saints went on the road and established themselves as NFC contenders, while the Packers and Lions kept their playoff hopes alive with wins.

Saints (7-2) defeat Bills (5-4) 47-10

During their seven-game winning streak, the Saints' pass-happy offense has discovered a running game with Mark Ingram and Alvin Kamara. Playing outdoors on the road in November usually spells disaster for quarterback Drew Brees, but the Saints relied early and often on the running game in Buffalo.

New Orleans scored 47 points, and Drew Brees threw for no touchdowns (he ran for one). Ingram rushed for 131 yards and three touchdowns, while Kamara added 106 and a score.

Packers (5-4) defeat Bears (3-6) 23-16

Brett Hundley had the game he needed in place of Aaron Rodgers to help keep the Packers in the playoff hunt. With Green Bay up 16-13, Hundley hit DeVante Adams for a 19-yard touchdown. After Chicago kicked a field goal to make it a one-touchdown game, it was a Hundley to Adams 42-yard connection that put the game away. Hundley finished with 212 yards passing and a touchdown.

Steelers (7-2) defeat Colts (3-7) 20-17

The Colts' defense shut the Steelers’ offense down in the first half. A field goal with 30 seconds left in the half gave Pittsburgh their first points of the game, making the score 10-3.

Indianapolis extended their lead to 14 with a 61-yard Jacoby Brissett pass to Chester Rogers. But the Steelers answered with a JuJu Smith-Schuster touchdown catch from Ben Roethlisberger. Following a Colts’ interception, Pittsburgh tied the game when Roethlisberger found tight end Vance McDonald in the end zone. After missing a field goal to take the lead with six minutes left in the fourth quarter, Steelers kicker Chris Boswell knocked one in at the end of regulation to secure the 20-17 victory.

Smith-Schuster caught five balls for 97 yards and a touchdown.

Vikings (7-2) defeat Redskins (4-5) 38-30

The Vikings exploded for 28 points in the first half against Washington. Minnesota was clicking on all cylinders offensively until two Case Keenum interceptions gave the Redskins some life. After getting down 35-17, Washington cut the deficit to eight with 14:47 left in the fourth quarter.

But a Vikings’ field goal extended that margin to 11. The Redskins answered with a field goal of their own, but it was too little, too late. The score came with just over a minute left, and the onside kick was unsuccessful. Keenum passed for 304 yards, along with four touchdowns, and two picks.

Titans (6-3) defeat Bengals (3-6) 24-20

This game had a little bit of everything. An ejection (Bengals' Vontaze Burfict), back-to-back turnovers, high-scoring first half, and defensive-minded second half. Tennessee jumped out to a 17-13 lead behind two DeMarco Murray touchdowns. The first points in the second half weren't scored until 5:03 left in the fourth quarter. A.J. Green took an Andy Dalton pass 70 yards to the house to give the Bengals a 20-17 lead.

The Titans responded on the final drive of the game. With just 36 seconds left, Murray scored his third touchdown on a short pass from Marcus Mariota. Murray's three touchdown day included 42 yards rushing and 30 yards receiving.

Buccaneers (3-6) defeat Jets (4-6) 15-10

Depending on what color football glasses a person is wearing, this game could have been described as stout defense or offense ineptitude. The quarterback battle of 38-year-old Josh McCown vs. 34-year-old (former Jet) Ryan Fitzpatrick resulted in a 3-3 halftime score. With a 9-3 edge at the 6:05 mark in the fourth quarter, Fitzpatrick found Charles Sims for a touchdown pass to extend the Buccaneers' lead to 15-3. The Jets didn't score their first touchdown of the game until McCown hit Robby Anderson with just 28 seconds left.

Lions (5-4) defeat Browns (0-9) 38-24

The winless Browns are still playing hard, but it’s always something. After jumping out to a 10-3 lead, Cleveland allowed the Lions to tie the game with a fumble return for a touchdown. And then with time running out in the second quarter and no timeouts, Browns quarterback DeShone Kizer inexplicably attempted to sneak the ball in from the two-yard line. The Lions’ stopped him, and the clock ran out. The Browns’ season in a nutshell. Detroit went into halftime with a 17-10 lead and outscored Cleveland 21-14 after intermission to earn the victory. Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford threw for 249 yards, along with three touchdowns and an interception.

Jaguars (6-3) defeat Chargers (3-6) 20-17

The Jaguars' defense has been stellar all season, but they found their kryptonite early on in Austin Ekeler. The rookie running back caught two touchdowns from Phillip Rivers to put the Chargers up 14-6. Jacksonville quarterback Blake Bortles connected with Marqise Lee to tie the score, but a field goal by San Diego gave the Chargers a 17-14 lead. That’s when things got interesting. With less than two minutes left, the Jaguars forced Ekeler to fumble, but they failed to capitalize after a Bortles’ interception. The Chargers went three-and-out on their next possession, and Bortles redeemed himself by leading Jacksonville on a six-play, 36-yard drive in 55 seconds. A Jaguars field goal sent the game into overtime, where they picked off Phillip Rivers and knocked in another field goal for the win.