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Week 16 power rankings

Packers wide receiver Nelson celebrates his touchdown against the Bears in the second half during their NFL football game in Green Bay Reuters

1.  Packers (No. 1; 14-1):  A week after they were erased as the penciled-in NFC champions, it could be time to break out the tattoo needle.

2. Patriots (No. 2; 12-3):  The Dolphins’ ability to build a 17-0 lead shows what a team like the Ravens or Steelers could do in the postseason at Gillette Stadium.

3.  Saints (No. 3; 12-3):  The win over the Falcons reconfirmed how great the Saints are at home — and it underscores how differently the Saints play when they leave the Superdome, which they’ll have to do sooner rather than later in the playoffs.

4.  49ers (No. 4; 12-3):  In this season of go-go offenses, the Niners are the defense-wins-championships exception to the rule.

5. Ravens (No. 5; 11-4):  If the Ravens are going to play down to the level of the competition again this weekend, at least they won’t have to drop very far.

6. Steelers (No. 6; 11-4):  Entering Week 17 as the No. 5 seed in the AFC, the Steelers still could climb as high as No. 1.

7. Lions (No. 8; 10-5):  With the Eagles eliminated, the Lions are officially the most dangerous team in the NFC playoff field.

8. Bengals (No. 12; 9-6):  Andy Dalton gets one more chance to show that he can beat a division rival other than the Browns.

9. Falcons (No. 7; 9-6):  The good news is that they don’t have to deal with the agony of another close loss to the Saints.

10. Giants (No. 17; 8-7):  Brandon Jacobs will get a chance to “shut up” another “fat boy” this weekend, when the Cowboys and their defensive coordinator come to town.

11. Eagles (No. 20; 7-8):  Well, at least the Dream Team will fulfill its goal of winning the last game it plays in the 2011 season.

12. Cowboys (No. 11; 8-7):  If the Cowboys finish 0-4 against the Eagles and Giants, how can significant changes not be made?

13. Texans (No. 9; 10-5):  The last two games without Wade Phillips were perhaps the best case he could make for another shot at a head-coaching job.

14. Broncos (No. 10; 8-7):  If Kyle Orton pulls the plug on Tebowmania, John Elway may have to leave Denver permanently.

15. Raiders (No. 19; 8-7):  So is it better to not make the playoffs at all, or to make it and be blown out in Baltimore, Pittsburgh, or New England?

16. Jets (No. 15; 8-7):  If this team somehow sneaks into the playoffs, they could likewise sneak into the Super Bowl.  Where they would lose by 34 points.

17. Chargers (No. 13; 7-8):  Will A.J. Smith at least smile when he learns he’ll be getting paid for three years to not work?

18. Chiefs (No. 14; 6-9):  At the end of Saturday’s version of Romeo and Hue-liet, only one of the main characters died.

19. Seahawks (No. 16; 7-8):  Apparently, “beat the hell of ‘em” means “lose by only two points.”

20. Cardinals (No. 18; 7-8):  Early Doucet was just a little late to the end zone.

21. Panthers (No. 22; 6-9):  They’re the perfunctory non-playoff team who will be on everyone’s playoff prediction list for 2012.  Including mine.

22. Titans (No. 23; 8-7):  Imagine how good this team would have been if Kenny Britt hadn’t torn an ACL.

23. Dolphins (No. 21; 5-10):  Imagine how good this team would have been if Chad Henne hadn’t . . . never mind.

24. Bills (No. 25; 6-9):  The far bigger miracle than any Tebow-driven win was a Buffalo blowout of the Broncos.

25. Bears (No. 24; 7-8):  Kahlil Bell may have cost Matt Forte a lot of money.

26. Redskins (No. 26; 5-10):  Evan Royster may have cost, um, someone a lot of money.

27. Jaguars (No. 27; 4-11):  With a loss to the Colts ensuring that the Jags won’t have to deal with Andrew Luck for the next 15 years, the team could be tempted to start its worst quarterback.  Then again, the worst quarterback on the team arguably is already the starter.

28. Browns (No. 28; 4-11):  Six days after Santa’s workshop shut down for the year, the “factory of sadness” will be mothballed for seven months.

29. Vikings (No. 30; 3-12):  Even after Saturday’s win, this franchise seems to be getting too accustomed to losing.

30. Colts (No. 32; 2-13):  A win is a loss, and a loss is a win.  Either way, they lose.

31. Buccaneers (No. 29; 4-11):  Barring dramatic changes, the Bucs will own the basement of the NFC South for years to come.

32. Rams (No. 31; 2-13):  Stan Kroenke suddenly may be interested in swapping franchises with Shad Khan.

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94 Responses to “Week 16 power rankings”
  1. popdawg99 says: Dec 27, 2011 11:25 AM

    Jets are too high.

  2. hashsview says: Dec 27, 2011 11:29 AM

    Cowboys suck. The have beat one team with a winning record all year. And that was a 1-0 49ers team in week 2. What a joke. So happy when I read that article about a poll of NFL fans. America voted and the Packers have more fans then any other franchise. Americas team….yeaa if you only poll trailer parks. O and I am not even a Packers fan.

  3. southpaw2k says: Dec 27, 2011 11:30 AM

    I’m not going to nitpick with the top five teams, except that I think the Saints should be #2 and the Patriots #3. But that’s still splitting hairs.

    I’m going to be praying for the Ravens to not lay another road trip egg this weekend harder than any previous prayer for their benefit that I can remember. The NFL was smart to schedule the game at the same time as Browns/Steelers, but I hope the Ravens don’t watch the scoreboard much of that game while on the field.

  4. tiffpats4eva says: Dec 27, 2011 11:30 AM

    I disagree. My Pats should be 4th on the list, not second. The Saints are definitely playing like the best team in the league right now.

  5. galvestontexans says: Dec 27, 2011 11:32 AM

    Wow 13th really for the Texans. I guess I am ok with that when you guys are putting us down we tend to play better.

  6. bubba9er says: Dec 27, 2011 11:32 AM

    If running the ball and playing great defense is the key to winning in the playoffs, the 49ers should be the odds-on favorites to win the Superbowl.
    Even without Patrick Willis these guys smash you in the face. Wait until they get the best ILB in the NFL back.

  7. test2402 says: Dec 27, 2011 11:33 AM

    No.1 = Tim Tebow.

  8. twitter:Chapman_Jamie says: Dec 27, 2011 11:33 AM

    “12. Cowboys (No. 11; 8-7): If the Cowboys finish 0-4 against the Eagles and Giants, how can significant changes not be made?”

    Great point, however you are forgetting who runs the show. Jerry refuses to let go of an aging Terrance Newman, continues to sign under achieving DB’s and clearly has no clue what his role is within the organization which is making money.

  9. gjperch says: Dec 27, 2011 11:34 AM

    John Elway may have to leave? Um, no. Orton was not the answer, and we’re glad he’s gone. Though we all half expect him to come into Denver and put up career numbers and destroy the Broncos. Tebow might be the answer, but I think many Broncos fans feel the same way Elway does … we have to see Tebow take a big stride in the off-season to be a better passer. You may think everyone in Denver is a Tebowmaniac, but it ain’t so. The maniacs just happen to be very loud about it. Everyone else, like myself, are cautious and hopeful about Tebow, but we haven’t seen anything to make us think he’s the franchise yet. We love his competitiveness, but he has to improve in the pocket. And if somehow we end up with the ability to trade for one of the top-tier QBs in the draft, we wouldn’t be heartbroken to see a legit franchise QB come to town. Unfortunately, unless Tebow really can turn into a better QB (we’re all hoping), all Tebow has done is ruin Denver’s chance to get a good QB. Oh, and a bunch of us are really tired of Mike McCoy. We think he’s in over his head.

  10. Stiller43 says: Dec 27, 2011 11:34 AM

    30. Colts (No. 32; 2-13): A win is a loss, and a loss is a win. Either way, they lose.

    Orrr either way they win…

  11. richm2256 says: Dec 27, 2011 11:36 AM

    Haters can hate, but New England just keeps winning …… year after year.

    You hate because you wish YOUR team was this good.

  12. homelanddefense says: Dec 27, 2011 11:36 AM

    As a Pats fan Im still not sure why they are listed ahead of the Saints. Im not positive the Saints shoudln’t be # 1 on this list.

  13. pikindaguy says: Dec 27, 2011 11:36 AM

    “At the end of Saturday’s version of Romeo and Hue-liet, only one of the main characters died.”

    This is brilliant.

  14. dubitodd123 says: Dec 27, 2011 11:43 AM

    The saints should be number 1 they have the MVP on there team packers r way to overrated

  15. ottograham says: Dec 27, 2011 11:44 AM

    As the season draws to an end the country is filled with the chanting of awesome fans screaming:

    “HERE WE GO STEELERS, HERE WE GO!”

    finish this season with a solid W, hope the Ravens play as if they didnt have Boldin (oh wait), and really hope the Pats get their second upset from Buffalo this year. Then you all can continue with your rape comments, mongaloid insults, and other jokes with a sincere lack of intelligence. We will get the lombardi while youre all billowing smoke from your pores trying to think up the next Pittsburgh/Steeler joke…

  16. svcfilmguy says: Dec 27, 2011 11:46 AM

    I’d flip the Saints and Patriots and have the Eagles much lower than 11th, but otherwise I have no issues here. The top 6 are way, way ahead of the rest of the field.

  17. jimmysee says: Dec 27, 2011 11:48 AM

    Saints @ Superdome looked pretty good last night!

  18. pastabelly says: Dec 27, 2011 11:49 AM

    The Jags should absolutely make sure to keep Andrew Luck out of Indy. I would love to see the look on Polian’s face if the Colts were to actually win the game.

  19. herwordskillyou says: Dec 27, 2011 11:50 AM

    Hahaha, even PFT thinks the Eagles are the best NFC East team despite not making the playoffs.

  20. predicatepanda says: Dec 27, 2011 11:50 AM

    16. Jets (No. 15; 8-7): If this team somehow sneaks into the playoffs, they could likewise sneak into the Super Bowl.
    ————————————————–
    Why? They have a QB with next to no confidence, a defense that has moved to the middle of the pack, and an inability to play consistent football. If they sneak in, it’s more like one and done.

  21. richm2256 says: Dec 27, 2011 11:53 AM

    ottograham says:
    finish this season with a solid W, hope the Ravens play as if they didnt have Boldin (oh wait), and really hope the Pats get their second upset from Buffalo this year. Then you all can continue with your rape comments, mongaloid insults, and other jokes with a sincere lack of intelligence. We will get the lombardi while youre all billowing smoke from your pores trying to think up the next Pittsburgh/Steeler joke…
    ———————————————————
    Yet another Squealers fan who isn’t bothered by the fact that this once-scary team has to rely on another team losing.

    My, how standards have fallen in once-proud Steel Town.

  22. massappeal12345 says: Dec 27, 2011 11:54 AM

    Your comments about the Patriots should have read that the team lost Light in the warmups, and Mankins on the first drive. Then they played, almost the whole game, with two rookie tackles, and two other fill-ins. Then they put up 27 second half points. All the while, not losing in almost two months.
    But, you have to mention “What would Baltimore do against that defense”, a team that lost to Jacksonville, Seattle before they were good, and put up JUST 6 points against Philly.

    Who’s writing this stuff.

  23. adm350 says: Dec 27, 2011 11:56 AM

    Maybe elway should tell everyone he has reconsidered Tebow’s future. He seems to play great when hes on the hot seat.

  24. jimmysee says: Dec 27, 2011 11:57 AM

    re: Packers — hard to be “overrated” when you’re 14-1.

  25. GG Eden says: Dec 27, 2011 11:58 AM

    I have a wild conspiracy theory that Chris Polian elevates to GM role in Indy, Bill moves on to GM Rams, and there’s a handshake deal in place where Bradford is traded to Colts and Rams draft Luck.

    Chris Polian has been running the drafts of late, possible sign he’ll take on the job and Bill moves on to GM another team. Irsay has said Polian’s job is also going to be evaluated could be ‘speak’ for Polian Snr moving on to a new challenge with a new team.

    Of course, there’s still the belief of mine that the Niners will trade the Golden Gate to reunite Luck with Harbaugh, both so Norcal.

    While I still have the tinfoil on my head…

    I believe the NFL wants the Raiders and Broncos in the playoffs, for the networks and media attention.

    They’ll rort the games as much as possible to allow the Bengals to lose, the Raiders to win, the Broncos to win, and then really punish the Titans hard to ensure they don’t win. They wont interfere with the Jets-Dolphins game because that doesn’t matter, just ensuring Titans lose for the Raiders to win tie-breaker.

    Would be a hype letdown to have the Titans or Bengals in the playoffs, both teams not nationally or globally interesting. Whilst the Raiders are always good for the league, rate their tits off, and have huge global fanbase. And Tebow naturally pervades all.

    Blockbuster games those…

    Houston-Oakland rematch (the game when Al passed away)

    Steelers-Broncos (tebow golden boy and media cashcow to get rid of the unlawful Steelers who irritate Goodell and call him bad names, ride the Tebow wagon thru to the divisional round).

  26. suhnami says: Dec 27, 2011 11:58 AM

    pastabelly says: Dec 27, 2011 11:49 AM

    The Jags should absolutely make sure to keep Andrew Luck out of Indy. I would love to see the look on Polian’s face if the Colts were to actually win the game.

    ———————————

    I was thinking the same thing…Jags have EVERY incentive to blow this game not only to help their own draft status in an obvious rebuild but to keep Andrew Luck out of Indy, a division rival.

    Should be hands down the worst game in a loooong while to watch with seemingly both sides trying to lose lol

  27. brooklynniner19 says: Dec 27, 2011 12:00 PM

    how are the 49ers behind Saints & PAts? smh

  28. imopen7 says: Dec 27, 2011 12:02 PM

    Steelers @ #6?!! haha. Should be #1. Baltimorons are more nervous about the bungels than ever before!

  29. blackqbwhiterb says: Dec 27, 2011 12:05 PM

    What if the Colts players are tired of being accused of losing on purpose, and go out and smash the Jags? I’m sure Orlovsky and certain other would-be backups would love to, and it would be funny as heck to see the management lose out on the 1st pick they’ve been working towards all season.

  30. 6ball says: Dec 27, 2011 12:06 PM

    .

    @ottograham

    “we will win the lombardi while youre (sp) billowing smoke out of your pores trying to think of the next Pittsburgh Steeler joke ”

    Why think? You’re it.

    .

  31. bradeh says: Dec 27, 2011 12:07 PM

    Patriots vs. Saints. Better passing game? Saints. Better running game? Saints. Better defense? Saints. Better special teams? Saints.

  32. bubba9er says: Dec 27, 2011 12:09 PM

    “Saints @ Superdome looked pretty good last night!”
    ————————————————
    Unless the Rams beat the 9ers the Saints will have to play multiple games away from the Superdome to get to the SB. Different story outside.
    I can’t wait for the playoffs.

  33. southpaw2k says: Dec 27, 2011 12:11 PM

    imopen7 says:
    Dec 27, 2011 12:02 PM
    Steelers @ #6?!! haha. Should be #1. Baltimorons are more nervous about the bungels than ever before!

    ————————————————–

    Yes, I’m nervous about the Bengals, but they have historically played us tough no matter what. And you’re honestly trying to say that the Steelers should be #1 over the 49ers (who they lost to last week) and the *Reigning Super Bowl Champion* Packers, who just happened to beat them in the big game last year?

  34. holeinone09 says: Dec 27, 2011 12:12 PM

    richm, what happened when the Steelers played the Pats this year?

    That’s what I thought happened.

    And if they meet again in the playoffs, it will happen again no matter where they play the game. The Pats defense is awful this year, plain and simple.

  35. dvdman123 says: Dec 27, 2011 12:12 PM

    You are what your records says you are and right now the Packers should be No.1 and the rest should be Saints 2A, Patriots 2B and the Niners 2C.

  36. stephen031 says: Dec 27, 2011 12:16 PM

    If you have the Titans so low (and for good reason) despite being 8-7 since their only good win is against Baltimore in week 2, why in the hell are the Jets 6 spots higher than them despite their only good win being against Dallas in week 1?

    Seriously, other than Dallas, they’ve beaten the Jags, the Dolphins when they were still winless for the first 2 months, the Chargers during their 6 game losing streak, the Bills (twice) during their 7 game losing streak, the Redskins, and the Chiefs.

    Purely that high based on name..

  37. ottograham says: Dec 27, 2011 12:21 PM

    @richm2256

    Ill take whatever seed we get pal. Standards havent fallen, maybe competition has risen. I dont care what road we take as long as it finds the team I appreciate contending for a championship…

    Nice try though.

  38. rabidbillsfan says: Dec 27, 2011 12:23 PM

    If you think what Kahlil Bell is doing to Fortes value is bad, CJ Spiller is digging FJ’s value’s grave as we speak. Does that mean Spiller is better, not necesarilly, but to be an over 30 back on a Pass-First team, coming off a broken leg usually doesn’t come with good news…

  39. 13forgbp says: Dec 27, 2011 12:23 PM

    “Haters can hate, but New England just keeps winning …… year after year.

    You hate because you wish YOUR team was this good.”

    Serious question…When was the last time they won anything?

    Lately, I think of the Pats as a good regular season team that gets their arse handed to them in the playoffs.

    And by the way….my team isn’t that good…they are better.

  40. kevpft says: Dec 27, 2011 12:31 PM

    I understand the bit about the Cowboys – and as a lifelong fan, I’m frustrated with them – but I think you have to give it more than one year. This is the first year with this coaching team in place, with no offseason prep, and the team’s dealt with injuries like everyone else has.

    One more season should tell the tale for sure. Everyone has enough experience now that their ability to adjust and grow before next season – or not – will be telling.

    I’m as mortified as anyone else by the ongoing random mistakes and the disasters (like the truly inexcusable inability to make adjustments during the 34-7 Eagles blowout), but there doesn’t seem to be much benefit in a knee-jerk reaction here. Maybe if a truly elite inactive coach wants on board, but only then.

    The idea of 0-4 against the Giants and Eagles isn’t good, but when you consider that one Giants loss was by 3 and one Eagles loss was a meaningless game with your star QB injured, then it’s not so black and white.

  41. kevpft says: Dec 27, 2011 12:34 PM

    Hoping that Crennel gets the HC job in KC. Really, what would they gain by choosing someone else? KC needs stability and integrity and a guy that the players trust and respect. They need to keep their focus off the glamor and on the basics.

    With Crennel as coach, getting all of their stars back from injury, maybe some additional help in the offensive/QB-coaching area, and the AFC West being what it is, KC is a solid bet for a playoff bid next year.

  42. ottograham says: Dec 27, 2011 12:40 PM

    @6ball

    still trying to figure out the joke here. was it my text that explains how I hope the best case scenario goes for the team I follow? If so that renders you ignorant. But seriously if you can put a time on it, how long did it take you to make sucha simple and not funny comment… my bet is too long. have fun with mediocrity throughout your life.

  43. irishnativeson says: Dec 27, 2011 12:40 PM

    jimmysee says: Dec 27, 2011 11:57 AM

    “re: Packers — hard to be “overrated” when you’re 14-1.”

    You get the Vikes twice… The injury stricken, under .500 Bears, who’ve played better ball then they are now and the Lions who have a serious little brother complex, not to mention their PK is the only player from the team that’s been to the playoffs, if I’m not mistaken. Perhaps it’s “hard to be overrated” but not impossible .

  44. suhnami says: Dec 27, 2011 12:42 PM

    finally a little love from PFT on the Lions?? what ever happened to all the luck associated with “Teams falling apart…giving away wins” to detroit?? Now they’re the most dangerous in the NFC field??

    True Lions fans know…this team can beat anyone, anywhere

    Schwartz should be in consideration for COY and Stafford WITHOUT QUESTION should be in the probowl – 2 things nobody is talking about

  45. packerstexansfan says: Dec 27, 2011 1:06 PM

    irishnativeson says: Dec 27, 2011 12:40 PM

    jimmysee says: Dec 27, 2011 11:57 AM

    “re: Packers — hard to be “overrated” when you’re 14-1.”

    You get the Vikes twice… The injury stricken, under .500 Bears, who’ve played better ball then they are now and the Lions who have a serious little brother complex, not to mention their PK is the only player from the team that’s been to the playoffs, if I’m not mistaken. Perhaps it’s “hard to be overrated” but not impossible.

    We also played a healthy Bears team on the road and won. As undisciplined as the Lions are, they are still a good and dangerous team. You completely left out that we took down the Saints, the Falcons, a surprisingly decent Panthers team, the Giants, and an up and down Chargers team that was up when they played us

  46. jimmysee says: Dec 27, 2011 1:06 PM

    re: Packers —

    The team is the defending Super Bowl champs.

    Had the target on their back all year.

    Until the Kansas City speedbump — had not lost a game in over a year!

    Hard to see how they could be “overrated.”

  47. vincentbojackson says: Dec 27, 2011 1:09 PM

    Not a fan of either team, but the Saints below the Pats? Really?

    The Saints would hang 70 points on that sorry excuse for a defense.

  48. CKL says: Dec 27, 2011 1:09 PM

    Why do people act like the Steelers have this wonderful offense that can kill peeps? They make some big passes downfield but I bet their RZ offense is below average. They score .1 PPG more than Miami does even AFTER the 27 points they put up on the Rams. Their offense is helped GREATLY by having one of the few defenses left in football that actually keeps points off the board and gets people off the field on third down. The prior two games to the Rams game didn’t they score 3 pts and 14 pts on offense? It is to laugh.

  49. Chargers have no rings says: Dec 27, 2011 1:10 PM

    richm2256 says:
    Dec 27, 2011 11:36 AM
    Haters can hate, but New England just keeps winning …… year after year.

    You hate because you wish YOUR team was this good.

    **************************

    They win year after year until January, sorry pal 0 rings since Spygate.

  50. dexterismyhero says: Dec 27, 2011 1:11 PM

    ottograham says:Dec 27, 2011 11:44 AM

    As the season draws to an end the country is filled with the chanting of awesome fans screaming:

    “HERE WE GO STEELERS, HERE WE GO!”

    finish this season with a solid W, hope the Ravens play as if they didnt have Boldin (oh wait), and really hope the Pats get their second upset from Buffalo this year. Then you all can continue with your rape comments, mongaloid insults, and other jokes with a sincere lack of intelligence. We will get the lombardi while youre all billowing smoke from your pores trying to think up the next Pittsburgh/Steeler joke…
    =============================
    Ok, here is one for you otto…hail hail black n urine!!!

  51. silvernblackpa says: Dec 27, 2011 1:11 PM

    “15. Raiders (No. 19; 8-7): So is it better to not make the playoffs at all, or to make it and be blown out in Baltimore, Pittsburgh, or New England?”

    You know, I might normally agree with you, but given everything that’s happened the last 9 years….I’ll take it. A playoff blowout still happened in the playoffs. Progress!

  52. donny05 says: Dec 27, 2011 1:11 PM

    Relax with the Saints people. They are no better than the bucs when they have to play in cold weather outside. Remember that great 7-9 seahawks team they lost to last year in the playoffs?

  53. silvernblackpa says: Dec 27, 2011 1:13 PM

    I’m hoping Crennel doesn’t get the job in KC because that would be an excellent hire and thus bad for my Raiders.

    Go get Josh McDaniels, Pioli! I’m begging you.

  54. EJ says: Dec 27, 2011 1:18 PM

    rabidbillsfan says:Dec 27, 2011 12:23 PM

    If you think what Kahlil Bell is doing to Fortes value is bad, CJ Spiller is digging FJ’s value’s grave as we speak. Does that mean Spiller is better, not necesarilly, but to be an over 30 back on a Pass-First team, coming off a broken leg usually doesn’t come with good news…

    I think you are absolutely correct my Bills brother. On one hand I feel bad for Freddy after such a great start to the season, but on the other hand I’m ecstatic that we have not one but two great RB’s leading into next season. Go Bills!!!!

  55. grandpoopah says: Dec 27, 2011 1:19 PM

    New Orleans should absolutely be higher than New England. The offenses are basically a wash, but the Patriots are just horrible on defense.

  56. mikep363839 says: Dec 27, 2011 1:20 PM

    Yo Mike, quit hating on the Patriots if the Ravens come back down 17 you would prolly be saying their superbowl favorite and joe flacco is a beast haha have some objectivity dude!

  57. packerbacker12 says: Dec 27, 2011 1:22 PM

    “The saints should be number 1 they have the MVP on there team packers r way to overrated”

    Those ‘way overrated’ Packers beat the Saints in the season opener. You can make up all those lame excuses but facts are facts.

    And oh yeah Aaron Rodgers is MVP.

  58. packerbacker12 says: Dec 27, 2011 1:24 PM

    “You get the Vikes twice… The injury stricken, under .500 Bears, who’ve played better ball then they are now and the Lions who have a serious little brother complex, not to mention their PK is the only player from the team that’s been to the playoffs, if I’m not mistaken. Perhaps it’s “hard to be overrated” but not impossible .”

    Not the Packers fault that their division rivals suck.

  59. rukiddnme29 says: Dec 27, 2011 1:25 PM

    I’m so tired of the Cowboys always being listed above every other team with the same record and even some teams with a better records. It makes these rankings hard to take serious.

  60. justwinbaby29 says: Dec 27, 2011 1:26 PM

    How the playoffs will look after week 17:

    AFC-

    #1 New England
    #2 Baltimore
    #3 Houston
    #4 Denver
    #5 Pittsburgh
    # 6 Oakland

    NFC –

    #1 Green Bay
    #2 San Francisco
    #3 New Orleans
    #4 N.Y. Giants
    #5 Detroit
    #6 Atlanta

  61. CKL says: Dec 27, 2011 1:34 PM

    holeinone09 says:
    Dec 27, 2011 12:12 PM
    richm, what happened when the Steelers played the Pats this year?

    That’s what I thought happened.

    And if they meet again in the playoffs, it will happen again no matter where they play the game. The Pats defense is awful this year, plain and simple.
    ___________________________________
    The Steelers had a BRILLIANT gameplan on defense and I would have enjoyed watching that if I weren’t Pats fan. Well conceived, well executed, and LeBeau outcoached the Pats coaches. That said, one thing I am sure of is that the same plan WILL NOT work again the second time around. BB isn’t as good when seeing things for the first time but he’ll have a counter if they meet again. I’m sure LeBeau knows that as well. If Pitt beats them in the playoffs it will be in a different way.

    I also think the Pats are too high on this list. At least 4 if not 5 teams should be ahead of them.

  62. primetime0552 says: Dec 27, 2011 1:34 PM

    irishnativeson says:Dec 27, 2011 12:40 PM

    jimmysee says: Dec 27, 2011 11:57 AM

    “re: Packers — hard to be “overrated” when you’re 14-1.”

    You get the Vikes twice… The injury stricken, under .500 Bears, who’ve played better ball then they are now and the Lions who have a serious little brother complex, not to mention their PK is the only player from the team that’s been to the playoffs, if I’m not mistaken. Perhaps it’s “hard to be overrated” but not impossible .

    =====================

    You’re mistaken about Hanson being the only one being to the playoffs…….

    Nate Burleson
    Leonard Davis
    Rashied Davis
    Justin Durant
    Chris Harris
    Will Heller
    Shaun Hill
    Chris Houston
    Maurice Morris
    Rob Simms
    Maurice Stovall
    Stephen Tulloch
    Kyle Vanden Bosh

  63. nejerseygirl says: Dec 27, 2011 1:42 PM

    10. Giants (No. 17; 8-7): Brandon Jacobs will get a chance to “shut up” another “fat boy” this weekend, when the Cowboys and their defensive coordinator come to town.

    16. Jets (No. 15; 8-7): If this team somehow sneaks into the playoffs, they could likewise sneak into the Super Bowl. Where they would lose by 34 points.
    ________________

    iChuckled.

    I agree that the Pats shouldn’t be listed as #2 (and I’m a Pats fan). They have a great record, but this hasn’t been the prettiest of seasons. If every game they played this season consisted of only the 2nd and 3rd quarters, they might just have had another undefeated regular season. But they’re allowing too many points to be scored.

    Although their defense is ranked dead last, I’m not so sure that I’d put them there. However, they need to play the entire game if they want a chance to win in the playoffs.

  64. 6ball says: Dec 27, 2011 1:52 PM

    .

    @ottograham

    definition of a joke : someone who says definitively ” we will win the lombardi ” even though their team will most likely be a 5 seed in the AFC.

    I’ll alert the media in Green Bay, New Orleans, New England, Baltimore, San Francisco et al that you’ve eliminated them from playoff contention. I think the Packers fans will be most disappointed.

    ” continue my life of mediocrity ”

    Ouch, chief of the short bus ! I had thought I was doing well, owning my business which allows me to post on PFT daily. I’ll alert my employees.

    .

  65. irishnativeson says: Dec 27, 2011 1:57 PM

    packerstexansfan says: Dec 27, 2011 1:06 PM
    packerbacker12 says: Dec 27, 2011 1:24 PM

    That was the point of the post cheeseheads, your division isn’t as tough as you might think.

  66. ottograham says: Dec 27, 2011 2:00 PM

    @dexterismyhero

    nice attempt. Id hate on you if I didnt appreciate your username. but yet again another spiteful fan of an average team comes up with a joke worthy of his football squad.

  67. richm2256 says: Dec 27, 2011 2:04 PM

    I’ll take a team that goes 14-2 and 13-3 over a 9-7 or 8-8 team any day, even if they go one and out in the playoffs.

    You wouldn’t????

  68. lxmas says: Dec 27, 2011 2:06 PM

    “So is it better to not make the playoffs at all, or to make it and be blown out in Baltimore, Pittsburgh, or New England?”

    _____________________________

    If the Raiders make the playoffs, they will either HOST a wild card game or play at Houston. Who writes this &&&&?

  69. irishnativeson says: Dec 27, 2011 2:06 PM

    I don’t mind watching the Packers, it’s an entertaining enough brand of football. I’m just sayin

    Packers Offense overall (5th) 98.5 yrds per game rushing (27th)
    Packers Def overall (31st)

  70. richm2256 says: Dec 27, 2011 2:08 PM

    Chargers have no rings says:
    They win year after year until January, sorry pal 0 rings since Spygate.

    ———————————————————
    And how many rings do your Chargers have in that same period?

    Care to compare W/L records between the two teams over the 2007-2011 seasons, Chuckie?

  71. ottograham says: Dec 27, 2011 2:15 PM

    @6ball

    get back to work and no more explaining your financial success from behind a computer monitor. I also think there are no employees and you sit on a throne of lies. Get back to me when youre done informing these teams of my predictions. you butt hurt 6ball? i think you may be.

  72. chowtime888 says: Dec 27, 2011 2:17 PM

    Texans are one and done, saints are better than the Pats, Panthers are definitely better than the chiefs, and the Packers are undisputed #1.

  73. n0hopeleft says: Dec 27, 2011 2:20 PM

    Detroit @ NY…

    Awesome game coming our way.

  74. so1ar says: Dec 27, 2011 2:38 PM

    Martin Mayhew GM of the year. 3 years removed from the worst season in NFL history to the playoffs. Flat out amazing.

  75. ruvelligwebuike says: Dec 27, 2011 2:55 PM

    drunkenirish says

    I don’t mind watching the Packers, it’s an entertaining enough brand of football. I’m just sayin

    Packers Offense overall (5th) 98.5 yrds per game rushing (27th)
    Packers Def overall (31st)
    ———————-

    Packers Def YPG (31st)
    Packers Def PPG( 14th)
    Turnovers (1st)

    Until games are decided by how many yards you gain, that 31st ranking means nothing. I’ll take a high risk/reward defense that remains in the top half of the league at allowing points while putting the ball in their offenses’s hands more than any other defense in the league.

  76. bobleblah says: Dec 27, 2011 2:55 PM

    Next year you should put thumbs up/down after each team in the rankings.

  77. kevpft says: Dec 27, 2011 3:14 PM

    A few comments above about the NFC North supposedly being a weak division. Lions are very dangerous. Bears were very good for most of the season, a likely lock for a high playoff spot, and even after losing Cutler their defense is still dangerous. Minnesota is a mess right now, but still has flashes of excellence on a given day.

    How is that any worse than, say, the NFC South, NFC West, NFC East, AFC South, AFC North, AFC East, and AFC West?

    Looks to me like it’s still in the top 2 or 3 toughest divisions, at least.

  78. FinFan68 says: Dec 27, 2011 3:19 PM

    “They wont interfere with the Jets-Dolphins game because that doesn’t matter, just ensuring Titans lose for the Raiders to…”
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    Actually the Dolphins Jets game matters to several teams. With a Dolphins win the Jets and Titans are definitely out and the Raiders could be knocked out as well even if they win.

  79. graphicwolfart says: Dec 27, 2011 3:40 PM

    I actually believe the Rams are better than the Bucs.

  80. jkcranshaw says: Dec 27, 2011 3:52 PM

    For all the talk that is going on about defenses…

    The top 3 teams in this power ranking are the top three scoring offenses in the league,

    Green Bay: 34.3 pts/gm
    New Orleans: 33.5 pts/gm
    New England: 30.9 pts/gm

    which are good for 1, 2 and 3 respectively

    and they are neck and neck in scoring defense:

    Green Bay: 21.2 pts/gm
    New England: 21.4 pts/gm
    New Orleans: 21.5 pts/gm

    Which are good for 12th (tied), 14th, and 15th in the league. If any of the three teams meet at some point in the playoffs/SB the game will look like the opening night defensive battle (sarcasm) between GB and NO.

  81. EJ says: Dec 27, 2011 4:07 PM

    The two teams that will be playing in the SB this year are the Saints and the Patriots. The Packers are overrated, the Lions have no chance… at all, the ravens will eventually choke and the Steelers are gone in the first round.
    Superbowl Champions- New Orleans Saints
    Score: NO-41, NE-24

  82. childressrulz says: Dec 27, 2011 4:42 PM

    Watching the Bears Packers game I said Bell was costing Forte a lot of money as well. However one tends to forget Bell did it against a Packer line without its best run defender. I also do not think the Saints have a realistic shot against the Packers in Lambeau especially after the Packers get Jennings, Clifton, Bulaga, Pickett, and Starks back.

  83. delshofner says: Dec 27, 2011 4:48 PM

    O.K., You’ve got a team that is mathematically eliminated from the 12 team Play-Off field ranked # 11. Clearly there is only one thing left to do:

    Stop keeping score in regular season games, and give all of the players a “sticker” for participating.

    Then, let the smart people who do “Power Rankings” tell all us dummies what the Play-Off seedings will be after all those meaningless games are over.

  84. njsteeler says: Dec 27, 2011 5:27 PM

    I don’t care about these so-called Power Rankings. Most…, no ALL of the teams ranked in the top 10 have flaws. As far as the AFC teams go, the Steelers should not be worried about any of them. The Pats still have that horrible defense, and it will not be fixed any time soon. The Ravens still have Flacco under Center, and you don’t know which team is showing up week to week. I don’t care that they own 2 victories over the Steelers this year. Until they do it when it counts (the playoffs), they are still behind the Steelers. Can’t wait for the playoffs to began!

    Go Steelers!!!

  85. harleypuppy says: Dec 27, 2011 9:14 PM

    After reading all the comments I would like to remind everyone that it’s still a game played at a very high level and that all these players deserve a pat on the back because each time they walk on the field they may not walk off. Play nice everyone and count your blessings this arguing gets old sometimes.

  86. gln9213 says: Dec 27, 2011 9:30 PM

    Hey GG Eden…all I can say is wow! That was…..interesting…..

  87. GG Eden says: Dec 28, 2011 1:51 AM

    Thanks for reading, gln9213.

  88. Raider-in-PA says: Dec 28, 2011 8:30 AM

    15. Raiders (No. 19; 8-7): So is it better to not make the playoffs at all, or to make it and be blown out in Baltimore, Pittsburgh, or New England?

    A healthy Oakland team can hang with ANY team if they play for a full 60 minutes… Keep on hating douches…

  89. Mr. Wright 212 says: Dec 28, 2011 9:42 AM

    richm2256 says:
    Dec 27, 2011 11:36 AM
    Haters can hate, but New England just keeps winning …… year after year.

    You hate because you wish YOUR team was this good.

    53 177 i Rate This

    ———

    When was the last time the Patriots won anything without *cheating?

    Right.

    Never.

    What are we jealous of again? My guys beat them in 2007 and it wasn’t LUCK, either. It’s called preparation and making PLAYS.

  90. Mr. Wright 212 says: Dec 28, 2011 9:51 AM

    You’re mistaken about Hanson being the only one being to the playoffs…….

    Nate Burleson
    Leonard Davis
    Rashied Davis
    Justin Durant
    Chris Harris
    Will Heller
    Shaun Hill
    Chris Houston
    Maurice Morris
    Rob Simms
    Maurice Stovall
    Stephen Tulloch
    Kyle Vanden Bosh

    ——-

    He was talking about guys who were ON THE LAST LIONS TEAM to make the playoffs, stupid.

  91. havok82 says: Dec 28, 2011 10:40 AM

    The Saints and Niners probably should be above the Pats. It’s a power ranking, so it means jack and sh*t…..and jack left town.

    The Saints look unstoppable, but they have not played all that great away from NO. The other thing that I just can’t shake is this feeling of bad karma from their stat-padding with Brees. As much as people gave the Pats crap for “running up the score” in 2007, no one is complaining on the Saints essentially passing 40-45 times a game…even in blowouts. I could say the same for Rodgers tossing TD passes in an attempt to tie Brady’s record. Is the pursuit of a record so paramount that you want to risk extra shots at your franchise? I don’t think so.

  92. streatordave says: Dec 28, 2011 11:20 AM

    Cowboys can’t win until Jerrah keeps his bum in the owners box & at home. This will not happen. & the Cowboys will continue to have the most pub vs. championships than any other team.
    I am a big fan, but Jones just does not know how to run a football team. Great owner. Bad GM Pres. or Gran Pooh-Bah. * sigh*

  93. mornelithe says: Dec 28, 2011 12:54 PM

    @ Mr Wright: Seems to me that the Pats have the best win percentage of any team since 2007. Guess that doesn’t count, eh?

    Have fun resting on that 2007 victory, the Pats, and the rest of the Football loving world moved on long ago.

  94. Mr. Wright 212 says: Dec 28, 2011 1:08 PM

    What’s their win percentage in the playoffs and Super Bowl since Spygate?

    LIKE I SAID.

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