NFL Power Rankings: Week 13

Four teams locked up playoff spots this past weekend. New England, Denver and Atlanta secured their respective divisions on Sunday, while 11-1 Houston is guaranteed at least a wild card berth. But with four weeks left in the regular season, eight playoff spots are still up for grabs, setting up a frantic race to the finish.

One of the most exciting story-lines of this season has been the sensational play of the first two players taken in last year’s draft, Andrew Luck and Robert Griffin III.

In Indianapolis, Luck has orchestrated one of the most incredible turnarounds in NFL history. Just a year after going 2-14, the Colts find themselves at 8-4 and in position to grab the five seed in the playoffs. In Washington, RGIII has led the Redskins on a three game winning streak and just one game behind the division-leading Giants.

What’s so incredible about what we’re seeing is that both rookies are the reason their team is winning. Luck has thrown for almost 3,600 passing yards and has led his team on five game-winning drives in the fourth quarter or overtime. Griffin is the owner of the fourth-best passer rating in the NFL and has directed two game-winning drives of his own, both of which came against the rival Giants.

The question has been posed all season long: which of these two would you rather have? Although it’s interesting to debate this, I propose that instead, we sit back and relax on Sundays and watch this unprecedented demonstration of rookie success.

 

Photo Courtesy of vivi1867/Flickr

Team Rank Previous Rank Record Thoughts

 

Houston Texans

1

1

11-1

Houston’s victories haven’t come as easily since their demolition of Baltimore in week seven. Next week’s game in New England is the marquee matchup of week 14.

 

Atlanta Falcons

2

3

11-1

Over the past two years, the Saints have been Atlanta’s kryptonite. It had to have felt good to beat Drew Brees and company this time.

 

New England Patriots

3

4

9-3

Make that six wins in a row for the Patriots. Their final fourth quarter drive was a good sign for a team that has struggled to close out games this season.

 

Denver Broncos

4

5

9-3

An easy schedule over the final four weeks gives Denver a chance to grab a higher playoff seed.

 

San Francisco 49ers

5

2

8-3-1

San Francisco and St. Louis came within three minutes of tying for the second time this season. Unbelievable.

 

Green Bay Packers

6

9

8-4

Green Bay is averaging over 10 points less per game this year than they did in 2011.

 

 

 

Baltimore Ravens

7

6

9-3

Before Sunday, I can’t remember the last time Baltimore lost a close game. I guess everyone’s luck runs out eventually.

 

 Indianapolis Colts

8

10

8-4

Even with that amazing comeback in Detroit I’m not sure Indy is a top ten team. Even so, I couldn’t justify leaving an 8-4 team out of the top ten.

 

 

 

 Chicago Bears

9

7

8-4

All of a sudden Chicago is struggling. After winning six in a row they’ve lost three of their past four games.

 

Pittsburgh Steelers

10

14

7-5

Fresh off a big win at Baltimore, Ben Roethlisberger is expected to play next week. Things are looking up in the Steel City.

 

Cincinnati Bengals

11

12

7-5

A three game winning streak, followed by a four game losing streak, followed by a current four game winning streak. The Bengals are consistently inconsistent.

 

 

Seattle Seahawks

12

13

7-5

San Francisco has to visit Seattle Week 16. The NFC West is far from over.

 

 

 New York Giants

13

8

7-5

Three losses in their past four games and all of a sudden Dallas and Washington are in the Giants’ rear-view mirror.

 

Washington Redskins

14

15

6-6

RGIII saw Andrew Luck’s game winning drive and matched him with one of his own. Man, this offense is fun to watch.

 

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

15

11

6-6

Tampa Bay needs to regroup and take care of business these next three weeks against mediocre teams if they want to make the postseason.

 

Dallas Cowboys

16

19

6-6

I’m going to make a bold prediction that the Cowboys will once again lose the division on the final day of the season. Okay, okay— I guess that’s not very bold.

 

 

Minnesota Vikings

17

18

6-6

I would not be surprised if Minnesota loses their final four games. Although in today’s NFL, you never know.

 

New Orleans Saints

18

16

5-7

Well, the Saints made a run, but at 5-7, they’re going to need some serious help to sneak into the playoffs.

 

St. Louis Rams

19

21

5-6-1

St. Louis made things interesting by upsetting the 49ers. Seattle sends thanks.

 

Miami Dolphins

20

17

5-7

The defense played well Sunday, holding Tom Brady and the Patriots to their second lowest point total of the season.

 

Buffalo Bills

21

24

5-7

C.J. Spiller is averaging 6.6 yards per carry. He is an electrifying player on an un-electrifying team.

 

New York Jets

22

25

5-7

I guess a 7-6 game was expected as two of the worst offenses in the league faced off. The question now: what does the future hold for Mark Sanchez?

 

 

Cleveland Browns

23

23

4-8

Cleveland has won two games in a row?! With the “end of the world” looming is this a sign of the apocalypse?

 

 Detroit Lions

24

20

4-8

Detroit may have taken the “find any way to lose” crown away from Dallas after yet another close loss.

 

 San Diego Chargers

25

22

4-8

San Diego is a finalist for most disappointing team. How in the world are they 4-8 with all the talent they possess?

 

 

 

Tennessee Titans

26

26

4-8

Despite the return of an improved Jake Locker, the Titans' liabilities in the secondary continues to be the team's Achilles heel

 

 

Arizona Cardinals

27

27

4-8

Regardless of how bad of a team you are, it is difficult to lose eight games in a row. Arizona has managed to do just this.

 

Carolina Panthers

28

28

3-9

Carolina definitely isn’t as bad as their record. But like Detroit, they find every way possible to lose games. BC product Luke Kuechly is fourth in the NFL in tackles and a candidate for defensive rookie of the year.

 

 

Philadelphia Eagles

29

29

3-9

I’m not sure anyone would recognize the team that took the field Sunday. Time for players to audition for a job next year.

 

 Kansas City Chiefs

30

32

2-10

The Jovan Belcher tragedy gave the team something to rally around, leading to their best game of the season.

 

Oakland Raiders

31

31

3-9

During their five game losing streak, Oakland has given up almost 40 points per game.

 

Jacksonville Jaguars

32

30

2-10

The Jaguars don’t do anything well on either side of the ball. They’ll be a bottom feeder for some time.

 

 

Comments