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Week 13 Power Rankings

Steve Shoup

1. Green Bay Packers- The Packers have a real shot of going undefeated, but even if they don’t they are simply playing on a separate level right now. Their offense can’t be stopped right now and they are very likely heading to Indy this year.

2. Pittsburgh Steelers- The Steelers dug themselves a hole with losing to the Ravens twice, but considering their only losses are to Baltimore and Houston, you have got to like their chances going forward. If they can win out and the Ravens lose another game they will lock up home field advantage, and I doubt any team wants to go into Pittsburgh in January to try to knock off Pittsburgh.

3. Baltimore Ravens- The Ravens hold the tie breaker over the Steelers, but they’ve also shown that they can lose to some pretty weak teams. If they end up with home field advantage that will be key as they’ve struggled more on the road this season.

4. San Francisco 49ers- The 49ers lost a tough one to the Ravens, but once again they played one of the better teams in the league on the road and played well enough to win. That defense could allow them to go far in the postseason, and they should be a fun team to watch.

5. New England Patriots- The Patriots are rolling right now and with pretty much the rest of their schedule facing injury issues they could easily win out.

6. New Orleans Saints- The Saints had another top notch performance on prime time as they crushed the Giants on MNF. They do need to make sure that they don’t have a let down like they did after a similar performance against the Colts a couple weeks ago, where they lost to the Rams the next week. New Orleans has a tough game against the Lions this Sunday night. If they win that then I think they will be set with winning the division.

7. Cincinnati Bengals- The Bengals just don’t give up this season, and rookie Andy Dalton doesn’t seem to let anything phase him. The Bengals are definitely in the playoff hunt and could make a nice little run this year.

8. Detroit Lions- It might be time to start to panic in Detroit. They feel apart at the seams on National TV Thanksgiving day, and on top of that they lost their star DT Suh for the next two games. If the Lions drop this weeks game against New Orleans they could be in trouble.

9. Oakland Raiders- The Raiders continue to improve under Carson Palmer, and if Darren McFadden can come back they do have a real shot of making a nice playoff run. The AFC West is collapsing, so I don’t see them losing out on this playoff spot.

10. Dallas Cowboys- The Cowboys could be close to locking up the division. They have just two more home games (NYG, PHI), but road games against Arizona and Tampa shouldn’t really be an issue. They end the year with the Giants on the road, but if the Cowboys win at least 3 of their other 4 games, it might be too little too late for New York.

11. Atlanta Falcons- The Falcons are back in the playoff mix, and could even take the division. Their offense has been looking better, but they still seem to play down to their opponents at times.

12. Houston Texans- The Texans got Andre Johnson back this past week, but lost their new starting QB Matt Leinart. While they should be able to fend off the Titans for the division, their chances of going far in the playoffs are pretty much shot.

13. Chicago Bears- Chicago is probably on the outside looking in as they are without Jay Cutler and still have a weak offensive line. Their defense and running game can help them, but they’ll need some luck to get into the playoffs.

14. New York Jets- The Jets are still in the playoff mix, but until that running game gets right they aren’t as big of a threat as they want to be.

15. New York Giants- The Giants are into a tough part of their schedule and it could likely leave them out of the playoff mix. They do have two games remaining against Dallas so they do have the ability to control their own fate.

16. Tennessee Titans- The Titans are still in the divisional hunt do to the Texans not being able to keep a QB healthy. They will need at least 3 more wins to take the division and that could get dicey. Chris Johnson is still inconsistent, but if he runs like he did last week they def. have a chance.

17. Denver Broncos- Tim Tebow and the run option offense keeps winning in Denver, but really most of the credit needs to go to the defense. The Broncos defense has allowed just a combined 36 points over the last 3 weeks, and are keeping the game close enough that the Broncos essentially need just two good offensive drives to win the game.

18. Tampa Bay Buccaneers- The Bucs have been one of the bigger disappointments this season as their young talent hasn’t taken their game to the next level. They still have promise, but it will be a stretch for them to get to .500.

19. Buffalo Bills- Buffalo remained competitive this past week despite the injuries piling up. They still have a shot at a .500 finish, which would be a nice story for the team.

20. Philadelphia Eagles- Things aren’t pretty in Philly as they are relying on an extended look by Vince Young to ‘save their season’ (which wouldn’t happen even if Michael Vick was healthy).

21. Cleveland Browns- The Browns are a solid young team, with a good bit of promise, but they are still the 4th best team in the AFC North. They are heading in the right direction though and with time they could be a fun team to watch.

22. San Diego Chargers- The Chargers just can’t catch a break. Despite having a ton of big name talent they can’t buy a win. While some of their issues are of the coaching variety, they also need to add some better personnel, and guys who can be leaders on the field.

23. Seattle Seahawks- The Seahawks lost a game they could have won this past weekend against the Redskins mainly due to the collapse of their defense. The weren’t able to find a blitz package that worked against the Skins porous offensive line  and it cost Seattle, as the Redskins threw for over 300 yards.

24. Carolina Panthers- The Panthers are a solid young team who can be competitive in most games. Unfortunately an incomplete offensive line and some weaknesses on defense mean they won’t rise above that.

25. Washington Redskins- The Redskins picked up their 4th win of the year on Sunday against the Seahawks. It wasn’t by any means the prettiest NFL game you will see, but the Redskins offense looked really good. The Skins got a breakout performance from RB Roy Helu, which gives Washington some hope for the future. The positive stat of the day: Redskins had 416 yards of total offense to just 250 by the Seahawks. The negative stat of the day: The Redskins are 3-1 against the NFC West and 1-6 against everyone else.

26. Kansas City Chiefs- The injuries are piling up for the Chiefs and while they play solid football, they just don’t have the talent to compete.

27. Arizona Cardinals- The Cards picked up another win against the Rams, but despite getting over 200 yards on the ground, Arizona still needed a huge special teams play to win the game.

28. Miami Dolphins- The Dolphins have been playing a lot better of late, and they could easily be higher on this list. They are showing better offensive consistency, but still aren’t really a threat to win more than another game or two.

29. Minnesota Vikings- The Vikings can’t do much offensively while Adrian Peterson is out. There is some promise to this team, but I wouldn’t expect too many more wins.

30. Jacksonville Jaguars- The Jags made an interesting call this past weekend and benched Blaine Gabbert. Who knows what is going to happen with this franchise going forward, but they would probably be wise to keep Gabbert on the bench.

31. St. Louis Rams- The Rams can’t stop the run, as Beanie Wells ran for over 200 yards against them behind one of the worst offensive lines. On offense the Rams can’t get anything going, and will need serious overhaul this season.

32. Indianapolis Colts- The good news for Colts fans is this season is almost over, the bad news is they could very well end up in select company with an 0-16 record.

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