Power Rankings – Week Twelve

As the season begins to slowly wind down, the divisional races begin to catch fire. A good amount of movement throughout the power rankings this week; so where did your favorite team fall? As always if you think you can do better, leave your own rankings in the comments below.

1. Green Bay Packers (10-0). With Jay Cutler out for the remainder of the regular season, one of the Pack’s last true challenges comes in the form of the Detroit Lions on Thanksgiving Day.

2. San Francisco 49ers (9-1).San Francisco is finding new ways to beat inferior talent. Although their hot streak is burning hotter than ever, they face a daunting road ahead. Traveling cross country for a short week game inBaltimore could be too much to overcome.

3. Pittsburgh Steelers (7-3). The Ravens knocked the Steelers out of first place, but Pittsburgh has another week to get healthy and make a run.

4. New Orleans Saints (7-3). A bye week came at a good time for the Saints. They need to find greater consistency going forward.

5. New England Patriots (7-3).  For approximately twenty minutes the Kansas City Chiefs looked poised to shock the world… Then Tom Brady remembered Rod Gronkowski and it was all over.

6. Baltimore Ravens (7-3). Ravens hold serve in the AFC north by knocking off the Bengals in dramatic fashion. They control their own destiny from here on out.

7. Houston Texans (7-3).  The Matt Leinart era begins in earnest on Sunday. Hopefully he’s smart enough to lean heavily on Ben Tate and Arian Foster

8. Chicago Bears (7-3). Like the Texans perched above them, the Bears are now in seriously trouble. Jay Cutler’s absence will be felt up and down this team.

9. Detroit Lions (7-3). The Lions struggled early against the Panthers but came to life and took back control of their playoff destiny. You have to wonder if maybe they were spying a look a head to Thursday.

10. Cincinnati Bengals (6-4). The Bengals are one solid draft away from building a juggernaut. Think about how good this team is so far in 2011. Now add in all the picks they got for Carson Palmer. The AFC North is officially losing sleep.

11. Atlanta Falcons (6-4).Atlanta struggled against a better than averageTennessee defense until Matt Hasselbeck went down. Still a win is a win andAtlanta kept pace with the Saints for the NFC South title.

12. Dallas Cowboys (6-4). A little help from their hated rivals inPhiladelphia allowed the Cowboys to complete their hot streak turnaround. Can they keep it up going forward?

13. Oakland Raiders (6-4). They gave away the farm to get him, but to his credit, Carson Palmer is keeping the Raiders in division leading contention down the stretch.

14. New York Giants (6-4). Worse than losing to the Eagles was losing first place in the division that was all but a certainty two weeks ago.

15. Tennessee Titans (5-5).  Let’s hope that Hasselbeck’s injury doesn’t officially usher in the Ricki Stanzi era inTennessee. Clearly the Titans are a better team with Matt under center.

16. Denver Broncos (5-5). I refuse to eat crow on the Tebow subject. The kid is a winner, but he’s not an NFL Quarterback.

17. New York Jets (5-5).  Wow… the loss to the Broncos hurts big time. Rex Ryan’s choice words for the fans are going to put a damper on his pocketbook come Tuesday morning.

18. Buffalo Bills (5-5). Ryan Fitzpatrick is 0-3 since signing his contract extension. This team is on the verge of being done for the year.

19. Philadelphia Eagles (4-6). Winning with a backup QB over a hated division rival is always going to leave your team feeling extra special.

20. Miami Dolphins (3-7). The Dolphins have shown enormous amounts of heart in the last few weeks. Matt Moore is playing like a man possessed. Can he carry that into a victory overDallas on Thursday?

21. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (4-6). They played admirably against the Pack, but it wasn’t enough. Their season is all but over at this point.

22. Seattle Seahawks (4-6).  Two wins have the Seahawks feeling good about themselves all of a sudden. Unfortunately they’re not making the playoffs this year.

23. Arizona Cardinals (3-7). Skelton did his best, but the Niners were too strong for him to overcome.

24. Kansas City Chiefs (4-6). The Chiefs were simply overpowered by the Pats.

25. Cleveland Browns (4-6). The Browns show they’re not dead yet by knocking off the talented Jaguars defense.

26. San Diego Chargers (4-6). At 4-6 the Chargers could still win the west, but you have to believe if they don’t, and heck even if they do, that Norv Turner is polishing his resume for his next job.

27. Jacksonville Jaguars (3-7). A good defense for sure, but when you can only throw up 10 points against the lackluster browns, you certainly have offense issues across the board.

28. Washington Redskins (3-7). Tough, tough loss toDallas. It could have been the feel good victory that made this season bearable, but alas, it was not meant to be.

29. Minnesota Vikings (2-8). Ponder played well, but not well enough to win.

30. Carolina Panthers (2-8).Newton played great, but not great enough to win.

31. St. Louis Rams (2-8). This has just been a bad year for the Rams. I don’t expect it to be a trend, but they certainly were cursed from moment one.

32. Indianapolis Colts (0-10).  The one thing you can say about the Colts’ bye week. At least they didn’t lose.



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