There’s finally some movement in the upper reaches of the NFL Power Rankings following the Patriots’ loss last week. See where your team stands heading into Week 11.
1. Dallas Cowboys (8-1) +1
Dallas got a big time, emotional win over the Steelers, with Dez Bryant winning after the death of his father. They’ve also got their quarterback set after Tony Romo gave a nice and touching speech of support. Having him in the wings isn’t the worst thing ever, and the Cowboys are rolling. The division looks locked up too, barring a miracle.
2. Seattle Seahawks (6-2-1) +5
The Seahawks picked up a really big win over the Patriots this week. In New England’s backyard, no less. It was nothing short of a fight, but Seattle winning it has shown that they are back to the same tough out that they were a few years ago. They look like the best team in the NFC, and are a Super Bowl favorite.
3. New England Patriots (7-2) -2
The Patriots have long been the top team in these power rankings, but a stunning home loss certainly changes that. They lost to a Super Bowl contender, and it was tight, but still, it shakes up the rankings. Gronk also got hurt and played through it, but I think he’ll miss some time. The Patriots still don’t have anything to worry about.
4. Kansas City Chiefs (7-2) –
Man, the Chiefs are rolling. After a slow start, KC has rolled up to a 7-2 record, and supplanted the Oakland Raiders atop the division this week, owning a head-to-head over them. They look like a real contender to nab a top seed in the AFC, but they’ve got a murderer’s row going forward within the division.
5. Oakland Raiders (7-2) -2
Tough break dropping two spots during their off week, but they did get passed in the division. They’ll have plenty of time to gain ground going forward, with a chance to pass the Chiefs and they’re now tied with New England. Could they get the top seed in the AFC?
6. Denver Broncos (7-3) –
Denver kept pace in the uber-competitive AFC West, getting a win and moving forward. They’re behind the 8-ball, however, and need some help from an anemic offense if they’re going to get themselves in a position to compete in the playoffs. It’s also crazy to think about that the sixth team in our power rankings is third in its own division.
7. Houston Texans (6-3) +1
Quietly behind the pack, the Houston Texans are taking control of their division and looking like a playoff threat. Sure, Brock isn’t the best QB, but the defense has held up and the offense is scoring enough. They are going to be a tough out in the postseason for some of these teams.
8. New York Giants (6-3) +1
The G-men have turned a page on their season, and rattled off another win to try and stay with Dallas in the division. Even without that, however, they’re sitting with the third best record in the NFC, and are firmly in the postseason. The offense is clicking, and if they keep it up, Dallas will have a fight on its hands.
9. Atlanta Falcons (6-4) -4
Sure, the offense is great, but thank god the Falcons play in a struggling, middling division. They’ve bumbled recently, and are just really bad on defense. Sunday’s loss was painful, but was mitigated by the loss from Carolina and New Orleans. Lucky break, they need to start winning again.
10. Baltimore Ravens (5-4) +3
The Ravens have revived themselves. After knocking off Pittsburgh last week, they got more good news with a win this week, and losses from the entire rest of the division. They’re starting to build a lead, and may end up a playoff team if Pitt doesn’t figure things out. The defense looks leaps and bounds better than a month ago.
11. Detroit Lions (5-4) –
The Lions got a BYE week this week, and it worked as well as you could possibly hope. The Vikings took another loss, which gave them the lead in the division. Yeah, stop me if you ever expected that. Matt Stafford is playing REALLY good football, and they’ve got the struggling Jags this week.
12. Philadelphia Eagles (5-4) –
Make no mistake: that win over Atlanta was huge for a young Philly team. After lighting the league on fire, they were in danger of seeing the season go up in smoke. Beating a team like Atlanta could light a fire under this team, and move them back into playoff contention. The struggling Bears could give another confidence win.
13. Washington Redskins (5-3-1) +1
Washington getting a win over Minnesota got them feeling better about their offense, as evident by Kirk Cousins adopting a new catchphrase after the game. The secondary is coming into its own, and looks like a formidable line that we thought they would be. They better be with Aaron Rodgers coming to town.
14. Arizona Cardinals (4-4-1) +3
The Cardinals are back to being competitive, and the offense is a primary reason for it. The defense has played well most of the season, but Carson Palmer looks back to regular form, and now Arizona are making a late push. Still, that tie to Seattle really hurts looking back.
15. Minnesota Vikings (5-4) -5
Alright, it’s time to hit the panic button for Minnesota. The Vikings have now dropped four in a row and are sitting at second in their division. If the season ended today, they’d be on the outside looking in for the postseason. They don’t control their destiny anymore, and it’s time for Sam Bradford to wake that offense up.
16. Pittsburgh Steelers (4-5) -1
Speaking of panic, if the division wasn’t as bad as the AFC North has been, it would be time to do so for the Steelers. But the dilemma is a little more rosy for the Steelers, as they really just need a healthy Big Ben. They’ve got a small gap between them and Baltimore and can make it up, but they need him at 100%.
17. Miami Dolphins (5-4) +6
Someone replaced Ryan Tannehill with a competent quarterback. I guess threats to bench you will do that sometimes, and the Dolphins are back to winning. Sure, they won’t challenge New England, but the playoffs are far from out of reach. They can beat the Rams Sunday, but it’ll be a fight.
18. Tennessee Titans (5-5) +7
Hold the phone of the Titans. Tennessee picked up a win to get them back to .500. And what a win it was, hammering the Packers in a way that had Aaron Rodgers calling his team out publicly after. The offense led by Marcus Mariota is really good, after looking kinda meh to start the season. A win over Indy would validate them big time.
19. New Orleans Saints (4-5) -1
Man, the Saints really dropped a chance to catch up to Atlanta. It was a tough loss for sure, but not one entirely within their control. Now things look a little rocky going forward as far as the postseason, and they’ve got the Panthers waiting to spoil their chances on Thursday.
20. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (4-5) +6
The Bucs got themselves back up to second in the division, and according to Jameis Winston, are still firmly in the playoff conversation. That may not be for long though, with a trip to KC on the horizon.
21. Indianapolis Colts (4-5) –
The Colts had the week off, and are now looking at a two game deficit. Sure, that’s not insurmountable, but they’ve got to get that defense figured out. And the running game. Actually, anything but Andrew Luck. The Colts have a long way to go from contending.
22. Buffalo Bills (4-5) –
Rex’s crew had the week off and got passed by the Dolphins in the division. Rex swears this won’t be another .500 year, but it’s hard to see anything more with a really rough stretch going forward.
23. Los Angeles Rams (4-5) +4
The long slide for the Rams finally stopped this week, getting a fight of win in a 9-6 slugfest. That shows that the defense is terrific, but the offense not so much. They’re getting a shot in the arm with the start of Jared Goff, which could go amazing, or go horribly.
24. Green Bay Packers (4-5) -3
The Packers are in a free fall, sitting sliding down in a division after being unable to take advantage of the Vikings fall. Aaron Rodgers called out his teammates, but it’s time for him to look at himself, too. He’s not the same guy as his MVP season.
25. San Diego Chargers (4-6) -6
The Chargers dropped another tight game, and it just continues to bite them. They’ve now cemented themselves in last place of the division heading into the BYE. They can start to figure things out and plan for next year, barring a miracle.
26. Cincinnati Bengals (3-5-1) -10
The Bengals may be one of the frustrating teams in the NFL, and just can’t get things on the right page. Andy Dalton isn’t as sharp, and neither is that defense. Is this the year Marvin Lewis finally doesn’t survive?
27. Carolina Panthers (3-6) -3
Speaking of frustrating: how about blowing a 17-3 lead, and then when they tie the game, fumbling with almost no time left to give them a chip shot field goal for the win? Oh, and at home! The Panthers make my blood boil in the second half of games, and they really need to get things straight fast. Another loss, and it’s over.
28. New York Jets (3-7) +1
Yeah, they went up, but it wasn’t based on their success. All of those who thought Bryce Petty was the answer got six whole points to show for it. I’m not sure who else is going to save the season, and a BYE week is much needed for this defense.
29. Jacksonville Jaguars (2-7) -1
And in our latest installment of “How does Gus Bradley still have a job?”, the Jags dropped another game this week. They are staring another losing season in the face, and appear to have regressed under center. This was supposed to be the year of the jump, and they need to rally in the season’s second half.
30. Chicago Bears (2-7) –
Welcome back to the back of the pack, Chicago. They better be used to it, with Jay Cutler looking to be on his way out, and the defense looking a long way away. Losing Alshon Jeffery kills any offensive momentum they had, and it may be time to start eyeballing a top five pick.
31. San Francisco 49ers (1-8) –
Man, it’s been a rough first year for Chip Kelly. He’s given Kaepernick a chance, though, and the end of this season should be all about finding out if he’s the answer going forward. There’s little else to see.
32. Cleveland Browns (0-10) –
Well it looked like they’d give Baltimore a run for their money, but that turned into a beat down rather quickly. The Browns look good going forward, with lots of picks and some nice players, but they’ll only be a spoiler going forward.