NFL Power Rankings: Week 11

All across America, fans of playoff-aspiring teams breathed a collective sigh of relief on Sunday. Atlanta, Houston, Green Bay, Tampa Bay, and Dallas all escaped with close wins over inferior opponents. Of these teams, the Texans, Buccaneers, and Cowboys needed overtime to beat three teams who have only won a combined five games this season. This week again served as a reminder that any team can win on any given Sunday, insinuating my favorite cliché: “a win's a win.”

I had to put the 49ers in the second spot this week after watching their Monday night game against Chicago. Their impressive all-around performance against a very good Chicago team, combined with the Falcons underwhelming win against an Arizona team that had lost five games in a row, reaffirmed my belief that San Francisco is a better team than Atlanta.

In other news, New Orleans is amazingly back to .500 on the season, Baltimore now has a stranglehold on the AFC North with their 13-10 win over the Roethlisberger-less Steelers, and Tom Brady reminded Andrew Luck that experience is an invaluable quality.

Team

Rank

Previous Rank

Record

Thoughts

 

Houston Texans

1

1

9-1

Giving up 37 points to the worst offense in the NFL is not good. But I’ll give Houston a pass just this one time.

 

San Francisco 49ers

2

3

7-2-1

San Francisco completely dominated the Bears, shredding the third-ranked defense in the NFL. Alex Smith may have been the biggest loser of the night though. Do I hear a murmurs of a QB controversy in San Fran?

 

Atlanta Falcons

3

2

9-1

The Falcons are certified escape artists. Matt Ryan threw five interceptions and somehow Atlanta was able to pull out a win against yet another mediocre team. How long can this last?

 

 

Green Bay Packers

4

5

7-3

Winners of five in a row, the Packers are sitting pretty as Chicago struggles. Green Bay is the favorite to win the NFC North at this point.

New England Patriots

5

6

7-3

Perhaps the most impressive result of the weekend was the 59-24 drubbing the Patriots put on the Colts. Still, Gronkowski’s absence could be devastating for the NFL’s best offense.

 Denver Broncos

6

7

7-3

Peyton Manning is second in passer rating and may very well be the favorite to win league MVP.

 

Baltimore Ravens

7

8

8-2

A couple weeks ago everyone was ready to bury the Ravens. Oh how quickly things can change. A big win over Pittsburgh and now Baltimore has a two game lead in the division.

 

 

 

 

Chicago Bears

8

4

7-3

Dear Bears’ offensive line: Your quarterbacks would appreciate it if you could block someone…anyone.

Seattle Seahawks

9

10

6-4

Seattle hits the road after their bye. Can this young team continue to play well away from the friendly confines of CenturyLink Field?

 

 

 

 

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

10

13

6-4

Tampa Bay pulled out an impressive come-from behind victory in overtime to push their win streak to four games. Circle next week’s game against Atlanta; it should be interesting.

 

 

Pittsburgh Steelers

11

9

6-4

 A week after Ben Roethlisberger went down, back-up Byron Leftwich went down with broken ribs. Third stringer Charlie Batch will start Sunday. The Steelers are in some serious trouble.

 

 

 New York Giants

12

11

6-4

How will the Giants come out of their bye week after two straight losses? Dallas’ recent resurgence has set up yet another fight to the finish in the NFC East.

 

New Orleans Saints

13

15

5-5

And just like that the Saints are 5-5 and right in the playoff mix. We’ll see how far this team has really come as their next four games are against quality opponents.

 

Minnesota Vikings

14

14

6-4

Minnesota may have the most brutal remaining schedule in the NFL. Their remaining opponents have a combined record of 40-19, with four of their final six games coming on the road.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 Indianapolis Colts

15

12

6-4

The young Colts came back to Earth after a blowout loss at New England. We’ll see how this inexperienced squad responds to adversity.

 

 

 

 

Dallas Cowboys

16

16

5-5

Normally I would condemn a team for needing OT to beat the Browns, but in the case of the Cowboys, this was a good win. They always seem to find a way to lose these types of games.

 

 

Cincinnati Bengals

17

18

5-5

And the inconsistency continues for the Bengals. I jumped off their bandwagon after their four game losing streak. But I may be back on it though after watching them the past two weeks.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Washington Redskins

18

24

4-6

With their next two games coming against Dallas and the New York Giants, Washington will have a say in the outcome of the NFC East.

 

 

 Detroit Lions

19

17

4-6

Detroit blew another lead, effectively ending their season. After last year’s success, they took a big step back in 2012.

 

 San Diego Chargers

20

21

4-6

The beat goes on for the Chargers. The talent has been there for the past decade, but the winning has not.

 

Miami Dolphins

21

19

4-6

Just when Miami looked as if they would grab a wild card spot, they went and lost three games in a row.

 

New York Jets

22

26

4-6

A sound win over St. Louis gives the Jets some momentum heading into an always interesting rivalry game with the Gronk-less Patriots.

 

 

 

Buffalo Bills

23

28

4-6

Buffalo’s defense finally stepped up in their win against Miami. They don’t have a particularly tough remaining schedule, but making the playoffs would be a long-shot.

 

 

Tennessee Titans

24

23

4-6

The Titans have a very winnable game against Jacksonville next week. Chris Johnson should have a field day against the Jags’ run defense.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Arizona Cardinals

25

22

4-6

Arizona put forth a valiant effort against Atlanta, but their offense is just too flawed to compete. They haven’t been able to find consistent QB play since Kurt Warner retired.

 

St. Louis Rams

26

20

3-6-1

St. Louis has disappointingly gone five games without a win, after their defense looked so good during their 3-2 start.

 

 

Cleveland Browns

27

30

2-8

Cleveland may be 2-8, but I like the fight this team displays. Their overtime loss to Dallas marked their sixth loss by single digits this season.

 

 

Philadelphia Eagles

28

25

3-7

The Eagles are an absolute disaster. So many problems across the board from the O-line, to QB play, to team chemistry. Nothing has gone right.

 

 

 

 

 

Carolina Panthers

29

27

2-8

Carolina seems intent on losing games in every way possible. Most recently, blowing an 11 point lead with six minutes left, before ultimately falling in OT.

 

 

Oakland Raiders

30

29

3-7

A three game losing streak has officially bounced Oakland from the playoff picture. Man has that defense been bad during this stretch.

 

 

Jacksonville Jaguars

31

32

1-9

Jacksonville gave the 9-1 Texans a run for their money before ultimately succumbing in OT. Have to admire the effort though.

 Kansas City Chiefs

32

31

1-9

Not much to say about the Chiefs other than that something drastic needs to change in that franchise.

 

 

 

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