Patriots overtake No. 1 spot in PFF’s Week 15 NFL Power Rankings

Malcolm Butler and the Patriots rise to No. 1 on the back of their Monday night win over the Ravens.

| 6 months ago
Malcolm Butler

(Photo by Adam Glanzman/Getty Images)

Patriots overtake No. 1 spot in PFF’s Week 15 NFL Power Rankings


Week 14 of the NFL season has come and gone, and with it, a new week’s worth of grades are in the Pro Football Focus database.

PFF’s Power Rankings are based off of Senior Analyst Sam Monson’s ordering of all 32 NFL teams, offenses, and defenses. He uses PFF’s overall cumulative grades as a starting point, and makes necessary subjective adjustments to account for things that aren’t captured in the grading system, such as injuries.

The PFF Power Rankings will be updated every Tuesday morning during the NFL season—view the latest edition entering Week 15 here.

NFL Power Rankings

Off the back of New England’s Monday night win over the Baltimore Ravens, Tom Brady and the Patriots overtake the Dallas Cowboys for the top spot in Pro Football Focus’ Week 15 NFL Power Rankings.

Brady—recently named PFF’s top AFC QB pick for the 2017 Pro Bowl roster—is the league’s highest-graded quarterback through Week 14. In fact, he’s the highest-graded player in the league, with a mark that just edges out Rams DT Aaron Donald.

While the Patriots’ quarterback and offensive supporting cast often gets the praise, New England’s defense has also carried its weight this season. Through Week 14, the Patriots own the third-highest-graded run defense as a team, and the fourth-highest-graded pass-coverage unit, anchored by cornerback Malcolm Butler. Butler has recorded a league-high 12 pass breakups this season to go along with a pair of interceptions.

Another AFC team on the rise this week is the Kansas City Chiefs, as they move to No. 3 following their Thursday night win over the Raiders. Quarterback Alex Smith is a top-20-graded QB this season, though he’s earning his lowest overall mark since 2012. On defense, Justin Houston is among the 11 highest-graded edge defenders through Week 14, while his teammate, Tamba Hali, is not far behind at No. 18.

Staying in the AFC West, one of the biggest fallers in our rankings this week are the Denver Broncos, who move from No. 7 overall entering Week 14 to No. 12 currently. Suffering a 13-10 defeat in Nashville on Sunday, the Broncos’ currently own the second AFC Wildcard spot, with the Chiefs and Raiders now ahead by two games apiece in the division. Denver still owns the top defense in PFF’s Power Rankings, but the offense has slipped to No. 25 on the shoulders of quarterback Trevor Siemian—just the 28th-highest-graded QB entering Week 15.

As we enter the final stretch of the NFL regular season, be sure to check back weekly for PFF’s updated NFL Power Rankings.

| General Editor

Chase is a General Editor at PFF, focusing on the site’s NFL content strategy. His work has been featured in ESPN The Magazine, ESPN Insider, and The Cincinnati Enquirer.

  • crosseyedlemon

    The Lions are 8 spots worse than the Bears defensively and just 2 spots better offensively…yet 18 spots better overall? That’s absurd.

  • RETUSAF1995

    NE is going to choke. I think KC going to the SB.

    • crosseyedlemon

      I don’t think there is a coach more deserving of a ring than Andy Reid. He’s done just an amazing job the past 2 seasons.

    • JT

      Giants could possibly be there in the SB again……so even if NE made it you know they would be scared to face that team. I thought the Giants would suck this season too but they just seem to find ways to win despite their lack of offense in half their games.

      • crosseyedlemon

        The idea that the Patriots would be scared of the Giants is laughable. If anything, a possible rematch with New York would most likely intensify the resolve of Brady and his teammates to settle a few old scores.

      • https://twitter.com/MALACHiOFCOURSE Malachi

        i doubt they’d be afraid to face the mcadoo lead giants, he’s currently nowhere near the coach coughlin was. coughlin made sure his players weren’t intimidated by the pats by showing he wasn’t intimidated by the hoodie.

  • Scott West

    NE has a solid OL this year, which has been consistent and improving (and is very young on the interior). That will be key to their offense’s resiliency this post season, and ability to be consistent vs. elite defenses.

    With the injuries and limitations of most other contenders, and the steady improvement of NE’s defense and OL, NE could be primed for an historically great post season of dominating–seemingly out of nowhere–every opponent en route to a Superbowl.

    NE also has a solid defense in it’s youthful prime. If Fleming is ready to step in at tackle, and NE can acquire good tackles in the next couple off seasons, NE is in position to continue to dominate until Brady retires at his goal age of 45 (or later?).

  • Frank Galovic

    The Titans have beat four teams ranked ahead of them. Huh?

    • crosseyedlemon

      While also losing to the Chargers and just barely squeaking past the winless Browns.

    • Rizxo

      They’ve also lost to 4 teams ranked below them. Been that kind of season in Nashville

      • Frank Galovic

        Before I looked at the rankings, my guess was that they would be ranked about 15. Just trying to understand how it works. For example, the Packers haven’t been that good for a while. I am a Titans fan but never expected them to be in the position they are in. Helps being in one of the worse divisions in the league. Although it seems like their wins seem to be in other divisions.