NFL Power Rankings - Week 16

Thu, Dec 22, 2022

Wow, the AFC playoff race just added about four more teams after last Sunday’s upsets. Is your team in the hunt? Power rankings on deck…

#1. Eagles (13-1) — The Eagles are still the most complete team in the NFL. But they will need Jalen Hurts for a deep playoff run. (same ranking as last week)

#2. 49ers (10-4) — Brock Purdy or not, the Niners are my pick to represent the NFC in the Super Bowl. (same ranking as last week)

#3. Chiefs (11-3) — Back-to-back close wins against subpar opponents is probably not the way Andy Reid wants to roll into the last semester of the season. But as long as Mahomes is under center, the Chiefs are the team to beat in the AFC. (same ranking as last week)

#4. Bills (11-3) — The Bills looked very human against the Miami Dolphins last Sunday night. They’ll need more than last-second field goals to make it farther than the Divisional Round this year. (same ranking as last week)

#5. Bengals (10-4) — The run by the Bengals is eerily similar to last year’s Super Bowl run. (same ranking as last week)

#6. Vikings (11-3) — Greatest come-from-behind victory of all time. Nuff said. (up from 8th last week)

#7. Cowboys (11-4) — Good news for the Cowboys on the heels of that overtime loss to Jacksonville… They’ll be facing the rival Eagles this Sunday. but they won’t be facing them with QB Jalen Hurts. (dn from 6th last week)

#8. Ravens (9-5) — Some difficult divisional matchups in these last three games. Lamar Jackson’s status is still up in the air. (dn from 7th last week)

#9. Chargers (8-6) — They now hold the sixth seed in the AFC playoff picture. Getting healthy at just the right time. (up from 15th last week)

#10. Dolphins (8-6) — After a brutal three game skid, the Dolphins turn their attention to the Packers, the Patriots, and the Jets. Three winnable games. (dn from 9th last week)

#11. Lions (7-7) — Is there a more exciting story in the National Football League? Jared Goff is no longer merely a placeholder for the next-big-thing QB in the 2023 Draft. He is at the controls of one of the league’s most prolific offenses. After a 1-7 start, the playoffs are well within the Lions reach. (up from 13th last week)

#12. Jaguars (6-8) — Trevor Lawrence might be the hottest QB in the NFL right now. But can he win out? (up from 17th last week)

#13. Titans (7-7) — Losing Ryan Tannehill for the rest of the season is painful but not devastating. This team is built on defense and Derrick Henry. (dn from 10th last week)

#14. Seahawks (8-6) — Fading. It doesn’t get any easier from here. This Sunday: Chiefs in Arrowhead. (dn from 11th last week)

#15. Commanders (7-6-1) — They were due for a fall. The return of Chase Young could be the deciding factor in whether they make the playoffs or not. (dn from 12th last week)

#16. Giants (8-5-1) — I admit it, I thought the Giants were much worse than their 7-5-1 record going into last Sunday’s game in Washington. I stand corrected. Brian Daboll is a legit Coach of the Year candidate. (up from 22nd last week)

#17. Jets (7-7) — Who would have ever thought that the Jets versus Jags in Week 16 would have big time playoff implications? Must win for both teams. (dn from 16th last week)

#18. Browns (6-8) — Cleveland stays mathematically alive in the AFC Wild Card hunt with a win over the rival Ravens. (up from 19th last week)

#19. Raiders (6-8) — Josh McDaniels might not make it to the playoffs. But he beat Belichick. (up from 20th last week)

#20. Patriots (7-7) — Never seen a Belichick team play so undisciplined. That Stanford band play… egregious. (dn from 14th last week)

#21. Packers (6-8) — Nice win on Monday night versus the lackluster Rams. Now they just have to defend Jaylen Waddle and Tyreek Hill in South Florida. Good luck with that. (same ranking as last week)

#22. Steelers (6-8) — R.I.P. Franco Harris. (up from 26th last week)

#23. Buccaneers (6-8) — A tale of two halves last Sunday versus the Bengals. And a tale of two quarterbacks. Joe Burrow was three years old when Tom Brady won his first Super Bowl. (same ranking as last week)

#24. Saints (5-9) — Nice home win versus the rival Falcons. But can they catch the Bucs and win the NFC South? (up from 25th last week)

#25. Panthers (5-9) — One step forward, two steps back. Just when it looked like they gained a little momentum… (dn from 18th last week)

#26. Falcons (5-9) — Welcome to the NFL Desmond Ridder. Crazy that the Falcons can still win the division. (dn from 24th last week)

#27. Broncos (4-10) — Offense finally awakened in a throw-away game between two backup quarterbacks. (up from 29th last week)

#28. Rams (4-10) — Nothing shocking about Monday night’s loss in Lambeau. It’s been that kind of year for the injury-plagued Rams. (dn from 27th last week)

#29. Bears (3-11) — Despite the horrible record, QB Justin Fields continues to break records. Bears are going to be good next year. (dn from 28th last week)

#30. Cardinals (4-10) — Is Kliff Kingsbury already packing his bags? (same ranking as last week)

#31. Colts (4-9-1) — Matt Ryan now has the dubious honor of being on the wrong side of the greatest comeback in Super Bowl history as well as the greatest comeback of all time. Up 33-0 on the Viks at the half, the Colts found a way to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory. (same ranking as last week)

#32. Texans (1-12-1) — Another week, another close loss for the try-hard Texans. Despite the record HC Lovie Smith has done an admirable job motivating his guys to fight to the bitter end. (same ranking as last week)