At this point, the New Orleans Saints are the class of the NFC and the NFL for that matter. The Los Angeles Rams will threaten them down the stretch. Whichever team ends up with home-field advantage will have the inside track to the Super Bowl. The AFC is all the Kansas City Chiefs for the taking, but the New England Patriots are not far out. For the time being, the Saints are atop the Week 13 NFL Power Rankings.
#1 New Orleans Saints (10-1)
Weekly Results: W, 31-17 vs. Atlanta Falcons
Ranking Points: 199.27
Last Week: 1 Change: —
Note: After being the first team ever to crack the 200 point mark in these rankings, the Saints still won easily, they just didn’t crack the 40-point mark.
#2 Kansas City Chiefs (9-2)
Weekly Results: Bye Week
Ranking Points: 140.67
Last Week: 3 Change: +1
Note: KC is the class of the AFC, just lost a great game against the LA Rams. That may have been a preview of the Super Bowl.
#3 Pittsburgh Steelers (7-3-1)
Weekly Results: L, 17-24 @ Denver Broncos
Ranking Points: 139.43
Last Week: 2 Change: -1
Note: And just like that, the Steelers lose the #2 seed and fall to 4. The division is now really close as BAL is streaking.
#4 Los Angeles Rams (10-1)
Weekly Results: Bye Week
Ranking Points: 135.15
Last Week: 4 Change: —
Note: It’s LA and NOLA in the NFC. What a great showing on MNF. After a week of rest, they head to Motown.
#5 Minnesota Vikings (6-4-1)
Weekly Results: W, 24-17 vs. Green Bay Packers
Ranking Points: 110.97
Last Week: 6 Change: +1
Note: Cousins finally comes out and has a great game, leading the Vikings to a huge Sunday night win. Can they catch the Bears?
#6 Denver Broncos (5-6)
Weekly Results: W, 24-17 vs. Pittsburgh Steelers
Ranking Points: 110.5
Last Week: 8 Change: +2
Note: This is one of those teams you want to eliminate, but you just can’t. They win big games and they are still in playoff contention.
#7 Chicago Bears (8-3)
Weekly Results: W, 23-16 @ Detroit Lions
Ranking Points: 107.15
Last Week: 5 Change: -2
Note: This Bears team just finds a way to win. The Defense is spectacular for a long enough period to win games. I think if I leave this comment here the rest of the season, it will remain accurate. Stafford helped Chicago out here too.
#8 Houston Texans (8-3)
Weekly Results: W, 34-17 vs. Tennessee Titans
Ranking Points: 106.55
Last Week: 9 Change: +1
Note: 8 in a row! Playing for their now deceased owner. But either way, this team is hot!
#9 Dallas Cowboys (6-5)
Weekly Results: W, 31-23 vs. Washington Redskins
Ranking Points: 100.75
Last Week: 11 Change: +2
Note: The defense had a little bit of a struggle, but WR Cooper had a huge game and is making QB Prescott perform better.
#10 Los Angeles Chargers (8-3)
Weekly Results: W, 45-10 vs. Arizona Cardinals
Ranking Points: 99.25
Last Week: 12 Change: +2
Note: Dominating performance by QB Rivers as he set all kinds of NFL records. Still a top AFC team with a dominating D.
#11 Indianapolis Colts (6-5)
Weekly Results: W, 27-24 vs. Miami Dolphins
Ranking Points: 91.25
Last Week: 7 Change: -4
Note: 5 Wins in a row, although this was a close victory over Miami. QB Luck has at least 3 TDs in 8 straight games. Who is this TE Ebron?
#12 Seattle Seahawks (6-5)
Weekly Results: W, 30-27 @ Carolina Panthers
Ranking Points: 87.65
Last Week: 15 Change: +3
Note: A really nice road win for a team that is streaking. We know they have the offense, now the defense needs to show up.
#13 New England Patriots (8-3)
Weekly Results: W, 27-13 @ New York Jets
Ranking Points: 86.4
Last Week: 10 Change: -3
Note: They find a way to win and now sit at the #2 seed in the AFC.
#14 Baltimore Ravens (6-5)
Weekly Results: W, 34-17 vs. Oakland Raiders
Ranking Points: 80.74
Last Week: 14 Change: —
Note: Rookie QB Jackson wins his 2nd straight and now has this team in the thick of the playoff picture.
#15 Green Bay Packers (4-6-1)
Weekly Results: L, 17-24 @ Minnesota Vikings
Ranking Points: 76.2
Last Week: 16 Change: +1
Note: The fall continues for a team that is destined to be dismantled and reconstructed in the off-season.
#16 Tennessee Titans (5-6)
Weekly Results: L, 17-34 @ Houston Texans
Ranking Points: 74.27
Last Week: 13 Change:-3
Note: Played well at the start of this game, however, Houston outplayed them most of the game. A weak schedule over the last 5 games gives this team a chance at the playoffs.
#17 Atlanta Falcons (4-7)
Weekly Results: L, 17-31 @ New Orleans Saints
Ranking Points: 65.07
Last Week: 22 Change: +5
Note: Atlanta is done and you mark them as officially eliminated from playoff contention. This game was not as close as the score entails, it seems as though N.O. was playing with them.
#18 Cleveland Browns (4-6-1)
Weekly Results: W, [email protected] Cincinnati Bengals
Ranking Points: 64.35
Last Week: 23 Change: +5
Note: So, this team is not completely eliminated yet. There is a weird scenario where they could get in. Just win and get some help. 4 of their last 5 games are winnable.
#19 Detroit Lions (4-7)
Weekly Results: L, 16-23 vs. Chicago Bears
Ranking Points: 63.1
Last Week: 21 Change: +2
Note: Detroit played an ugly game but had it in hand late until a Chicago Pick-6. The Lions offense can move the ball but have trouble putting a game away. The season is officially over and there will be major changes in player personnel next season.
#20 Carolina Panthers (6-5)
Weekly Results: L, 27-30 vs. Seattle Seahawks
Ranking Points: 59.95
Last Week: 17 Change: -3
Note: Two losses in a row puts this team in a precarious position as they are now on the outside looking in and a head-to-head loss against a 6-5 Seattle hurts.
#21 Philadelphia Eagles (5-6)
Weekly Results: W, 25-22 vs. New York Giants
Ranking Points: 58.9
Last Week: 19 Change: -2
Note: Still a game out, they will need a lot of help down the stretch to have any shot of post-season play.
#22 Washington Redskins (6-5)
Weekly Results: L, 23-31 @ Dallas Cowboys
Ranking Points: 52.05
Last Week: 18 Change: -4
Note: QB McCoy wasn’t terrible, although he did toss 3 interceptions. Going forward, this team will struggle and the division is out of their hands.
#23 Jacksonville Jaguars (3-8)
Weekly Results: L, 21-24 @ Buffalo Bills
Ranking Points: 41.85
Last Week: 20 Change: -3
Note: Well, the first ax has fallen, the OC is looking for a job. He won’t be the only one. As a matter of fact, QB Bortles has lost the starting job as well.
#24 Tampa Bay Buccaneers (4-7)
Weekly Results: W, 27-9 vs. San Francisco 49ers
Ranking Points: 38.7
Last Week: 27 Change: +3
Note: Where was this team all year? Oh yeah, they beat a bad 49ers team, nevermind.
#25 Miami Dolphins (5-6)
Weekly Results: L, 24-27 @ Indianapolis Colts
Ranking Points: 28.3
Last Week: 28 Change: +3
Note: QB Tannehill was back and the offense played much better. Another team that is right there on the brink of the playoffs or being eliminated.
#26 Cincinnati Bengals (5-6)
Weekly Results: L, 20-35 vs. Cleveland Browns
Ranking Points: 19.35
Last Week: 24 Change: -2
Note: So it’s a mucky playoff picture in the AFC, and this team is technically not eliminated. Another team that needs to win out and get help. Not likely.
#27 New York Giants (3-8)
Weekly Results: L, [email protected] Philadelphia Eagles
Ranking Points: 18.6
Last Week: 26 Change: -1
Note: Let’s look forward to next year Giants’ fans, hopefully, they can add to a decent base of talent.
#28 Buffalo Bills (4-7)
Weekly Results: W, 24-21 vs. Jacksonville Jaguars
Ranking Points: 11.73
Last Week: 29 Change: +1
Note: Rookie QB Allen comes back and performs well enough to defeat Jacksonville. This team won’t make the playoffs but is improving as the season goes.
#29 San Francisco 49ers (2-9)
Weekly Results: L, 9-27 @ Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Ranking Points: -2.1
Last Week: 25 Change: -4
Note: No hope for this season, but they could have a great draft pick to add to their team going forward.
#30 New York Jets (3-8)
Weekly Results: L, 13-27 vs. New England Patriots
Ranking Points: -23.7
Last Week: 31 Change: +1
Note: When will the ax fall on the HC? The only thing saving him is the fact that QB Darnold is hurt.
#31 Arizona Cardinals (2-9)
Weekly Results: L, 10-45 @ Los Angeles Chargers
Ranking Points: -35.75
Last Week: 30 Change: -1
Note: After a terrible performance, players are getting cut. I expect for some coaches to lose their jobs as well.
#32 Oakland Raiders (2-9)
Weekly Results: L, 17-34 @ Baltimore Ravens
Ranking Points: -39.2
Last Week: 32 Change: —
Note: Worst team in the AFC, and it’s not even close.
Warning! These are not your usual Power Rankings. I’m not your everyday NFL analyst who throws his bias into how he ranks teams. I use a formula developed over many years and this is all about numbers. Please remember that Power Rankings are reactive and not predictive. This is where the teams stand following the previous weeks’ games. These rankings and the formulas and bonuses used to compile them are even for all teams.
Bottom Line: If you are a top 5 team playing a bottom 5 team and you win by a point or lose straight up, you will be penalized. If you win big, the rewards will boost you in the rankings.