Just a few more weeks left in the NFL regular season, and with it, teams continue to tweak where they will be once the post season begins. With that, here are our power rankings for week 13 around the league.
NFC Top 5
1. NY Giants (1) – More drama for the Giants, but yet it never seems to get to them. All they did this week was watch the player that caught the game-winner in the Super Bowl shoot himself, and they still rolled out and played a good enough game in DC to get a big win. A showdown with the Cowboys in two weeks will be very interesting.
2. Tampa Bay (3) – Consider me on this bandwagon after an impressive 23-20 home win over the Saints in pretty messed up conditions. They played well enough on both sides to win, and this is a team that is going to have to be dealt with in the postseason. Jeff Garcia has done more than enough to deserve an extension.
3. Carolina (3) – They followed up the poor outing in Atlanta with a huge 35-31 win in Green Bay. They are still going toe-to-toe with the Bucs for the lead in the NFC South, and it’s looking more and more that the division is going to come down to a showdown with Tampa Bay in the prime-time spotlight Monday night.
4. Arizona (2) – The Cards are starting to slip, as they have lost two straight, and the Eagles made them look awful on Thursday night. Yes, they are still going to win the NFC West, but I am starting to think unless that defense gets things right, you can have all the offense you want it’s not going to help. Kurt Warner will still get a lot of MVP votes.
5. Dallas (5) – A solid win at home over the awful Seahawks on Thanksgiving. They have their two biggest games coming up with a road game in Pittsburgh Sunday then a home game the following week on Sunday night vs the Giants. They will still have to play three road games to make the dance in February, and that is not going to be easy.
NFC Bottom 3
1. Detroit (1) – Wasn’t even close vs the Titans on Thanksgiving, and it looks as if this team is going to go winless, and why not? Rod Marinelli will give his “so long” press conference the day after the season, and this club can start to think about who it wants with the number one pick in April. Other than that, they are on the right track.
2. Seattle (2) – Crazy to think this team was up 14-0 vs the Packers in the playoffs just 11 months ago. Now with double digit losses, they are just looking to wrap up the season with some positive things to build on. A game vs the Pats at home this week is going to be yet another tough test. They just don’t play with much emotion.
3. St.Louis (3) – Had some moments vs the Dolphins, and could have won that game despite losing in the end 16-12. They are a different team when Steven Jackson plays, and Sunday’s game in which they hung in with the better Dolphins showed that. Another team that is looking to clean house in 09.
AFC Top 5
1. Tennessee (1) – Nothing like coming off a loss to the Jets than a bye week – that is, a game vs the Lions. They were up big before most people got in their seats, and then they wrapped it up with beating the pants off the worst team in the league. They have a semi-bye week this week vs the Browns at home.
2. Pittsburgh (2) – The best defense in the league made the Pats look like a below average team on Sunday in a 23-point win on the road. They have a brutal schedule in their last four games, but with the defense playing like it did Sunday, I would not bet against them in any of them.
3. New York Jets (3) – What a difference a week makes. The Jets looked like America’s team last week in beating the Titans on the road, and then they come home and look awful vs the Broncos is a stunning loss. You can’t tell what team is going to show up week in and week out, making the Jets a team that very well could be done in the first week of the playoffs.
4. Denver (-) – Let me get this right, you lose the Raiders two weeks ago at home, then come back with a road win vs the Jets? Talk about a team that has no clue what to expect week in and week out. If Jay Cutler and that offense plays like they did Sunday, they are going to give some team some issues in the playoffs.
5. Indianapolis (5) – Wasn’t easy in Cleveland Sunday, but at the end of the day pretty wins don’t matter, just so they are wins. The defense saved the offense, and they are on a roll and control their own destiny for a playoff birth heading into December. No one wants to play this team in the playoffs.
AFC Bottom 3
1. Cincinnati (2) – Not much of an effort at home vs the Ravens this week. They are 1-10-1, and about the only possible win left for this team is a game in Cleveland in three weeks. They are going to have to have a major roster blowup at the end of the year and into 09 to be competitive.
2. Oakland (2) – They build some solid momentum with a road win vs the Broncos, but then fail to do anything with it as they lost at home to a team that they had beaten this year in the Chiefs. Tom Cable will do a great job being a coordinator somewhere else in 2009 when the Raiders have yet another coaching change.
3. Kansas City (1) -Wow, the Chiefs actually won a game. Yes, it was against the Raiders, but at least they finally got one for their coach in Herm Edwards. I think they should think long and hard about trading Larry Johnson in the offseason, as they can get some much needed draft picks for him to rebuild more in 09.