NFL Power Rankings (Week 14)
The Packers likely enjoyed their late season bye week as they were able to heal up and ready themselves for their late season push to try to grab that coveted top seed. The Cardinals continue to make it difficult on them though, as they simply win seemingly every time they play. This was the time of year last season when the Buccaneers built momentum going into the playoffs, and it looks like they may be doing it again. In my eyes, the Chiefs are back on top of the AFC, as they’re now showing consistency with their defense to win games. I have mild concern with their offense, but certainly respect them enough to believe they’re a threat come the postseason. The Rams had a solid bounceback game this week in advance of their huge battle this week against Arizona.
The Cowboys did what they had to do and won against a lesser, banged up team. It wouldn’t shock me if they made a run to the Super Bowl, but the NFC has so many teams I think are superior to them. The Bills drop a tier after the Patriots beat them on a Monday Night game behind a whopping 3-pass performance by Mac Jones. I fully admit now that I was dead wrong on this Patriots team all season long, but I still can’t seem to put them into that top tier until I see Mac Jones win a game for them. He’s done a great job of managing an elite defense and solid run game so far this season, but I’m of the belief that a QB in today’s NFL needs to be able to win a game. And I’ve yet to see that from him.
The next tier is filled with all of the up and down AFC teams that refuse to play consistent football. The Colts have followed up their atrocious start to the season with great play of late, and look like a threat to the Titans in that division. Tennessee better watch out as they’re now in jeopardy of missing the playoffs altogether in my eyes. The game between the Chargers and Bengals was the high scoring, flashy game I expected. Both of these teams would be scary in the playoffs, but likely won’t string together multiple quality games. The Ravens are bad. There, I said it. Injuries have certainly played a role, but I haven’t liked this team all year. Losing to the Steelers, who are also very bad, ended their Super Bowl hopes in my opinion. Tough loss by the Raiders this week hurts their playoff hopes. A much needed bye for the Browns aided them in trying to make a late season push in a wide open division.
The NFC teams in this tier are really only relevant because of how shallow the talent is in the NFC after the top 5 teams. The Football Team is rolling and has looked like the quality team of late that many expected them to be in the preseason. A brutal loss by the 49ers squashed what was a pretty decent ride they were on. The Eagles bounced back against the other New York team this week to keep their hopes alive. The Saints desperately need Alvin Kamara back if they want any shot at doing anything.
Don’t look now, but the Dolphins have won 5 straight and suddenly have life. The Vikings were significantly outplayed by a winless Detroit team this week, and found a way to lose a game that was seemingly handed to them. The Seahawks put a pause on the whole “Russell is done” theory that I finally bought into. Losing Jamal Adams for the season is more of a storyline for the media than actually being of impact for this team. The Broncos defense will continue to keep them in games, but that offense leaves a lot to be desired. The Falcons playoff hopes continue to fade, but either them or the Panthers will finish this week 6–7, and relevant, as they both play each other.
The Giants and Bears join this lowly tier as they both have been playing absolutely dreadful football of late, particularly on the offensive side of things. The Lions finally move up here after a big win where Jared Goff, for the most part, actually looked like a competent NFL QB. It’s been apparent that this team has been better than the Jets, Jaguars, and Texans (who all 3 were destroyed this week) for most of the season, but by being winless, they belonged at the bottom.