Power Rankings: Week 14

Another week in the books, but what effect did it have on the Power Rankings?

| 5 years ago

Power Rankings: Week 14

As has become the norm at Pro Football Focus, Wednesday is Power Rankings day.

Our analysts each make up their own selection of rankings, we add them up and come up with a top 32. From there each analyst is subjected to some abuse by the fans of a team he is deemed to have done wrong to.

It’s a formula that works so here are the updated ones heading into Week 14.

The individual rankings.



And now the combined.

1. Houston Texans (1st)

They weren’t completely convincing against the Titans but always seemed to have the game in hand. Question marks remain about the Texans in the big game, but they at least get a chance to answer them against the Patriots on a massive Monday Night Football.

2. New England Patriots (2nd) and Denver Broncos (4th)

Maybe there is more depth in the NFC but our team seem firmly convinced that the cream of the crop lies in the AFC. New England had some problems in Miami but were able to lock down the East hours before Denver secured the West. Would you want to meet Brady or Manning in the postseason?

4. Atlanta Falcons (5th)

The defense stepped up big on Thursday Night Football to show even when the offense isn’t firing on all cylinders they can make enough plays to get the job done. That was hugely encouraging.

5. San Francisco 49ers (3rd)

The team has taken the approach that the Rams just have the kryptonite to the 49ers this year. They’re still a very good team even if questions at quarterback threaten to steal away all the attention.

6. Green Bay Packers (7th)

They’re chugging along with some big games upcoming. That defense has to worry them though, and they really need to get Clay Matthews back and contributing.

7. New York Giants (6th)

Their inability to turn drives into points really cost them as they buckled on the big stage of Monday Night Football. There’s no shame in losing to RG3 but that run defense needs to be better.

8. Seattle Seahawks (10th)

That win could define the Seahawks season if they go on to make the postseason. On the road and trailing they showed a lot of character, none more so than rookie sensation Russell Wilson.

9. Chicago Bears (7th)

They just don’t beat teams with a winning record do they? That was a must win game against Seattle and their limitations were painfully exposed. Not good enough when it really matters

10. Baltimore Ravens (9th)

And that is why it’s hard to take Baltimore seriously. Big injuries have left them with big holes and while they’ve taken hold of the AFC North have they been impressive in doing so?

11. Pittsburgh Steelers (14th)

And that is why you can’t count out the Steelers. They miss Ben Roethlisberger. A lot. But they still found away to beat Baltimore in Baltimore. Yeah they’re dangerous.

12. Cincinnati Bengals (12th)

If they were playing a better quarterback than the current version of Philip Rivers they probably don’t beat the Chargers. They keep winning but have become progressively less impressive since beating the Giants.

13. Washington Redskins (15th)

A big win over New York and they’re right in the mix for postseason contention. Getting Pierre Garcon healthy has been huge, but there’s no doubting this team goes as far as RG3 takes them.

14. Dallas Cowboys (17th)

Amid all the disappointment they still find themselves competing for a playoff spot. That almost seems odd. But Dallas has a talented roster. They just need to cut out the mistakes.

15. Indianapolis Colts (16th)

They’re heading in the right direction but were brutal against the Lions for large stretches of the game. Better teams won’t allow them the opportunity to make big plays at the end.

16. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (11th)

Two tough games, two tough defeats. Have we found the ceiling of this 2012 Buccaneers team?

17. New Orleans Saints (12th)

Stick a fork in them. Not because of one defeat but because this team just isn’t what it was offensively. Drew Brees needs to be more careful with the ball.

18. Detroit Lions (20th)

How did they blow that one? In one of Matthew Staffords’ better game they got slack and paid the price. That sums them up don’t you think?

19. St Louis Rams (21st)

It’s all well and good playing the 49ers hard, but what about the 14 other teams they’ll be facing this year. They need to kick on and build some momentum.

20. Minnesota Vikings (18th)

Say what you want but Christian Ponder is holding this team back. As bad as Blaine Gabbert was this year Ponder is worse right now.

21. Miami Dolphins (19th)

Just not quite good enough yet. But there are encouraging signs. They’ve got some playmakers on defense, now they just need to work on making that offense more explosive.

22. Buffalo Bills (23rd)

You’d feel a lot happier about the future of the Bills team if they could beat one of the leagues’ better teams.

23. Cleveland Browns (27th)

New owners may see this team head in a new direction. That would be a shame given the visible progress Cleveland are making.

24. New York Jets (22nd)

If insanity is making the same mistakes over and over again then what would you call the Jets. Sanchez starts this week. Maybe he doesn’t play as badly, maybe he does. Either way when do you decide to move on?

25. San Diego Chargers (24th)

They find ways to lose and at times look like a team upset with the situation they find themselves in. That line though is a mess, through injury and poor planning.

26. Carolina Panthers (25th)

Cam Newton is playing well, but what about his teammates who helped Brady Quinn look like a star?

27. Tennessee Titans (26th)

Too many mistakes on offense, negating what good play we do see out of them. Still there are encouraging signs from Jake Locker for the future.

28. Philadelphia Eagles (29th)

They were competitive against the Cowboys, what more can you ask from them? Still the firing of Jim Washburn seems unlikely to halt the wholesale changes coming.

29. Jacksonville Jaguars (30th)

Has enough happened for key players in this organization to keep their jobs? We’ll see.

30. Arizona Cardinals (28th)

They can’t keep starting Ryan Lindley and expect to win. It’s ridiculous and a real waste of a talent like Larry Fitzgerald.

31. Oakland Raiders (31st)

Will the season end already?

32. Kansas City Chiefs (32nd)

In an unimaginably trying week they showed a lot of heart. Credit to the organization for that.


  • grayghost

    I feel bad for Nathan if he thinks the Bears or Seahawks could beat the Falcons on a neutral field.
    And he and Neil do realize that Houston, New England, and Atlanta all already beat Denver this season, right? Broncos are way overrated after playing the squishy part of their schedule and beating up on the worst division in football.

    • http://twitter.com/PFF_NateJahnke Nathan Jahnke

      Both the Bears and Seahawks have better defenses than the Falcons, and I think that would be enough to overcome the Falcons offense. We could very well see one of these teams playing in Atlanta for the playoffs, and I would not be at all surprised if it’s another early exit for the Falcons. When they can only beat the Raiders by 3 and the Cardinals by 4 both at home, there is reason to be concerned.

      As for the Broncos, they lost those games early in the season, and they have improved since those games especially in the passing game. They seem to be the only team with both an excellent passing game as well as an excellent defense right now.

      • Russell Wilson’s own dad

        yeah I think this is a little bit related to heavy barbiturate usage. you see all of these flaws with Atlanta, and they are there, but give me a break: the bears are not that good. It’s not even about ATL, it’s that the bears. are not. that good.
        your top 10 is jacked this week, Nate.

        • http://twitter.com/PFF_NateJahnke Nathan Jahnke

          I disagree. While the Bears do have four losses on the year, they are all to teams that I have ranked higher than Chicago. Against teams I have ranked lower than the Bears, they have an average margin of victory of 18.3 points. The Falcons last eight victories over teams I have ranked lower than them have been by a margin of victory of 6 points. I think the Bears would be able to beat the Falcons if they face each other in the playoffs.

    • http://twitter.com/Cornerss william

      all 4 of those teams are arguably in bad divisions.

  • Scott in SEA

    If you look at +- the Falcons are worse than the Bears and better than the Seahawks.
    And that is with a pretty squishy schedule. Seattle has played good teams.

  • GBFan

    Anyone else wanna criticize or call Clay Matthews overrated ?

    • izach

      he is not over rated, just over hyped by fans, he is a good OLB but he isnt a complete OLB, or aleast wasnt he was improving his weak areas this year. id still put him in the top 5 but its closer than most fans would admitt, and all things even with them all healthy id have mathews 4th or 5th out of 64 starting OLBs thats still really good

  • http://www.facebook.com/tyler.lesley.56 Tyler Lesley

    Why are the Broncos rated below (or tied, that’s a bit confusing) than the Patriots when they have the higher average rank?

  • izach

    i dont understand how teams like the bucs, cowboys, bengals, redskins, and seahawks, are above the steelers in sam and nathans rankings, even with our bad loses to some of the bottom teams, we are better than those teams ahead of us now, and given the fact that it looks like harrison is finally getting back to form, troy is playing again and big ben is back, it seems we are primed to be better than we have been all season and moving forward.

    • http://twitter.com/PFF_NateJahnke Nathan Jahnke

      It’s because even with Ben back and James Harrison playing better, there is more that I don’t like about the Steelers at this point than the Bucs, Bengals and Redskins. Mike Wallace hasn’t been playing well all year. The run game hasn’t been going great, and the defensive line and inside linebackers haven’t been playing well. It’s hard to put them ahead of a team like the Bengals and Redskins who have been hot without showing much signs of slowing down, as well as the Buccaneers who I think on a neutral field at this point would beat the Steelers. Had it not been for the return of Big Ben, I would have ranked them even lower than 15.

      • Russell Wilson’s own dad

        Nathan, is it just me or do you normally have a lot to defend around here?

        • http://twitter.com/PFF_NateJahnke Nathan Jahnke

          In Week 8 I was accused of ranking the Giants too low, and then they proceed to lose 3 of their next 4 games including a huge loss to the Bengals.

          In Week 10 I was accused of ranking the Packers too low, and then they barely beat the Lions followed by getting demolished by the Giants.

          In Week 11 it was the Steelers who then lost to the Browns.

          People can keep criticizing my rankings if they want, but I’m fairly happy with how my rankings have been week in and week out.

          • pat hunt

            you continue to rank the rams in the low 20’s week in week out even though they compete against every team and should be 8-4 if it weren’t for the tie game miami and detroit all very bogus games

          • http://twitter.com/PFF_NateJahnke Nathan Jahnke

            While they seem to have the 49ers number, they hardly competed against the Jets just a few weeks back in a home loss. I also wouldn’t say they competed against the Patriots in Week 8. While the team started strong, it will take a healthy Amendola and a decisive victory against a team that isn’t Arizona for me to rank them much higher.

  • pat hunt

    that awkward moment when you realize you should be ranked in the top 10 but you are barely ranked in the top 20! o_O