Week 13 NFL Power Rankings

week 13 nfl power rankings
Jeff Siner – Charlotte Observer

The Week 13 NFL Power Rankings have movement all over the place! The Patriots and Lions stay put as the best and worst teams this week, respectively. But, so many other teams are moving significantly from where they were in last week’s power rankings.

32. Detroit Lions (0-10-1)

Last Week: 32

I apologize to all the Detroit Lions fans out there. But, I’m rooting for 0-16-1 at this point. It’s a feat that I’m not sure we’ll ever see happen again. For an NFL team to be good enough to come so close to winning so many times and fail to do so every single time is just… special. It’s a rough life.

But, hey, I’ll give you this: The Lions are currently 1-9-1 in my eyes. The refs failed to penalize the Baltimore Ravens with a delay of game penalty at the end of the Week 3 game. It would have knocked the Ravens out of even Justin Tucker’s inhuman field goal range. You can always hang your hats on that.

31. Jacksonville Jaguars (2-9)

Last week: 30

The Jacksonville Jaguars are so bad they can’t even complete a comeback attempt over the Falcons. Obviously I’m poking a bit of fun at the Falcons with that comment. But, I guess my question is, where the hell was that effort the rest of the game? The Jags looked as snake-bitten as they’ve ever looked with turnovers on back to back drives in the second quarter.

They basically set the Falcons up with a 14-3 lead at halftime. The thought process was… hey, if the Jags can stop making killer mistakes, they could always turn this game around. The Falcons haven’t exactly fully earned their halftime lead. The problem is you still have to push the ball down the field, and the Jags were unable to do that.

30. Houston Texans (2-9)

Last Week: 27

Chin up, Texans fans! The only other teams to lose to the Jets this year were the Bengals and Titans and look where both of those teams are right now! Although, it’s a little different because the Texans’ offense was completely inept. Tyrod Taylor accounted for nearly 200 yards of total offense on his own, but nobody else could accomplish anything.

The Jets’ defense has been notoriously awful this season, so what does that say about the Texans’ offense? The Texans have some fundamental issues holding their football team back right now, hence their tumble in the Week 13 NFL Power Rankings.

29. New York Jets (3-8)

Last Week: 31

The much awaited return of Zach Wilson happened this week and… well, it wasn’t pretty. But, the Jets won. It was largely due to a running game that tallied 157 yards on the day. But, that doesn’t change the fact that the Jets’ air game failed to take flight all day. Wilson finished with 145 yards and an interception.

Thank god, for his sake, Mike White and Joe Flacco didn’t play any better. I can’t put them too high in the Week 13 NFL Power Rankings. But, I’ll give them a nice little boost for eclipsing their 2020 win total.

28. Pittsburgh Steelers (5-5-1)

Last Week: 23

Speaking of misleading records, how the hell is this Steelers team 5-5-1? Like the Falcons, you’d be forgiven for thinking they’re average because they have a .500 record. But, this team couldn’t beat the Lions. The refs handed them a win over the Bears. They struggled to put 15 points up on a very injured Browns team. They lucked out against Geno Smith and got a Bills team that wasn’t ready to go in Week 1.

In my opinion, they’ve only had one convincing win all season against the Denver Broncos. So, losing 41-10 to the Bengals is honestly about what we should expect. Do you honestly expect them to beat the Ravens, Vikings, Titans, Chiefs, or Browns? The Steelers are very close to visiting the Week 13 NFL Power Rankings’ basement.

27. Seattle Seahawks (3-8)

Last Week: 24

What can I even say at this point? Russell Wilson came back and this team is still hot doodoo garbage. This week might have been Seattle’s last chance to turn this season into something relevant or interesting. If only to build momentum for next year. But, now, it’s looking like it’s almost time to blow the whole thing up and start over.

26. Atlanta Falcons (5-6)

Last Week: 29

The Atlanta Falcons’ 5-6 record is a bit misleading. You’d be forgiven for thinking they’re an average football team right now if you only looked at that number. But, dive a little deeper, and you’ll see so many blown opportunities that you’d never trust this team ever again for the rest of your life. They almost had another one against the Jaguars this week. But, they prevented a fall in the Week 13 NFL Power Rankings by holding Trevor Lawrence’s heroic comeback attempt off.

25. New York Giants (4-7)

Last Week: 26

You have to give credit to the Giants’ defense. Considering the offensive production we saw, I’m pretty sure they wouldn’t have won this game without it. Three interceptions on Jalen Hurts put a bowtie on this pig of a game for Giants fans. Saquon Barkley was ineffective, Daniel Jones was uninspiring, and nobody had an answer for Hurts’ legs.

But, they found a way to get the job done. I don’t think it saves Joe Judge’s job. But, it’s the kind of hard-fought division win the locker room can hang their hat on.

24. Chicago Bears (4-7)

Last Week: 25

Wow. Um. Good job, Bears? You sure showed the Lions you could… score 16 points against them. Look, to be fair, the Bears got a win this week. It doesn’t matter in the final standings that it came against a Lions team that hasn’t won a game since Week 13 of last year (against the Bears, by the way).

Andy Dalton looked like Andy Dalton. But, hey, Darnell Mooney had a nice game! Maybe you’ve got a nice piece to build that receiving corps with?

23. Carolina Panthers (5-7)

Last Week: 21

So much for Cam Newton coming home to save the Panthers’ season, huh? Cam’s 5.8 passer rating this week was worse than anything the Panthers have ever seen out of Sam Darnold. He only completed five of his 21 passing attempts and threw it to the other team twice.

Then, perhaps even more insanely, the Panthers benched him for PJ Walker and he was sacked FOUR TIMES! The man only played two drives. I think there might be something fundamentally wrong with the Panthers, rather than their quarterbacks.

22. New Orleans Saints (5-6)

Last Week: 18

Life without Jameis Winston is tough in New Orleans. They were absolutely decimated by the Buffalo Bills on Thanksgiving this week. They didn’t even sniff the end-zone until the fourth quarter. And, if that wasn’t enough, they couldn’t even convert the two-point conversion after the fact.

The Saints’ defense did pretty well through most of the first half, but the whole team fell apart in the second half. If they’re not careful, the Saints could find themselves out of the playoff race when they looked like shoo-ins a few weeks ago.

21. Miami Dolphins (5-7)

Last Week: 27

Don’t look now, but the Miami Dolphins are only a single game out of the playoff race. It seems like they’re starting to get more comfortable with the idea of letting Tua take over in a more balanced offense. It’s not exactly the prettiest way to win games. But, it is one they could be successful with. It might seem crazy, but Brian Flores could potentially save his job if he learns to trust the quarterback the team spent a No. 5 overall pick on.

20. Denver Broncos (6-5)

Last Week: 22

Rumors of the Broncos’ demise have been greatly exaggerated. Patrick Surtain showed why he was worth a high draft pick this week by essentially putting the final nails in the Chargers’ coffin with a pick six. The Broncos’ offense was largely unspectacular, but it was efficient. Teddy Bridgewater avoided any major mistakes and finished with a 101.4 passer rating. This is the formula for winning, Broncos. I could see them right back in the playoff picture if they keep riding this strategy.

19. Philadelphia Eagles (5-7)

Last Week: 16

It’s pretty difficult to win a game when Jalen Hurts throws three interceptions like that. The Eagles are running out of breathing room in the playoff race. If they’re not careful, they could be out of it entirely in a few weeks. Dropping games to the lowly Giants is not going to help at all. Maybe they should run the ball more? After all, they did record 208 yards rushing on the day. They sure couldn’t accomplish anything through the air.

18. Cleveland Browns (6-6)

Last Week: 15

The Browns are currently in the AFC North’s basement when they could have been back in control of a playoff spot with even a modicum of offensive competence. Baker Mayfield’s case to remain the future of the Browns’ quarterback position took a massive hit this week. He mostly looked lost and totally out of sync with his receivers this week.

It reminded me a lot of the connection between Baker and OBJ, but this was every receiver on his team. Even Jarvis Landry missed a connection with Baker multiple times, despite finishing with 111 yards on the day. This Browns team is going to be back under .500 this year if their offense keeps playing like this.

17. Washington Football Team (5-6)

Last Week: 20

Astoundingly, the Washington Football Team is in control of a playoff spot! How crazy would that be, by the way, if WFT could make it into the playoffs as a Wild Card team with a losing record? I doubt that would happen, but it seems so fitting of a team that made it that way last year by winning the division. I’m not sure what’s gotten into them lately, but let’s see if it keeps up now that the schedule is about to get a lot harder.

16. Minnesota Vikings (5-6)

Last Week: 12

Welp, believing in the Vikings was fun while it lasted. I feel like I’ve been saying that a lot this year. But, they fall back down to dead-middle in the Week 13 NFL Power Rankings due to following up a huge win over a division rival with a flattening loss to a team they’re competing with for a Wild Card spot.

Plus, now Dalvin Cook is going to be out for a few weeks with a dislocated shoulder. Luckily, they draw the Lions, Steelers, and Bears over the next three weeks so he should have plenty of time to heal up before the Rams come to town in week 16.

15. Indianapolis Colts (6-6)

Last Week: 14

What a shame. The Colts had the Bucs right where they wanted them. Every Titan fan in the country was starting to sweat. Then, Carson Wentz imploded. They even pushed the ball down field late in the game to tie things up. But, the defense had no answer for Leonard Fournette. One somewhat predictable Carson Wentz interception later and the big statement upset had completely slipped out of their grasp, along with control of a playoff seed.

14. San Francisco 49ers (6-5)

Last Week: 17

Winners of four of their last five games, the 49ers are coming. It seems like not too long ago many of us were wondering how long Kyle Shanahan can keep resting on injury excuses to keep his job. Well, I think this recent run of form has bought him a bit of time. This was a key win the 49ers absolutely needed against the Vikings, considering the playoff implications.

They snatched that opportunity by forcing Minnesota to make key mistakes. They’re currently the No. 6 seed in the NFC. I probably don’t have them high enough in the Week 13 NFL Power Rankings. But, give it a week or two. I’m sure they’ll be up higher soon the way they’ve been playing.

13. Las Vegas Raiders (6-5)

Last Week: 19

That’s more like it, Raiders! After looking absolutely dead in the water the past few weeks, the Raiders reminded everyone that they’re still a very talented football team in Dallas. Unfortunately, they’re just barely on the outside of the playoff race looking in due to losing to the Chargers earlier this year.

But, if they can at least keep pace, they’ll get another shot at them in Week 18. Vegas has a lot of winnable games against teams competing for a wild card spot down the stretch. So, we’ll learn if they are built to last or not.

12. Los Angeles Chargers (6-5)

Last Week: 11

The Chargers have not exactly been lighting the world on fire lately. Since their bye week, they’ve only won two of five. In fact, they almost choked one away to the Steelers. It could have easily been only one of the last five. The key factor in a lot of these losses has been Justin Herbert’s erratic, inconsistent play.

Yes, he’s an extremely talented individual. I’m not trying to suggest he isn’t a generational talent. But, he’s thrown seven interceptions in his last six games and taken 12 sacks. That’s a big reason why it looks like the wheels are starting to come off.

11. Los Angeles Rams (7-4)

Last Week: 9

Speaking of teams who have been presenting worry trends lately, the Los Angeles Rams haven’t won since October. There has to be something in the water in LA, right? Why else would BOTH Los Angeles teams be suddenly collapsing after such promising starts?

It’s actually, once again, a quarterback issue. Matt Stafford was inefficient most of the day and threw an absolutely crushing pick six just ahead of their comeback attempt. Reverse that play and the Rams have a legit opportunity to pull this one off at the end.

10. Buffalo Bills (7-4)

Last Week: 14

The Buffalo Bills got back to form this week with a total domination of a reeling Saints team. It was a good look, but not quite enough to wipe losing to the Jaguars and being dominated by the Colts out of my memory. They’ll have an opportunity to prove themselves with a couple games against the Patriots left on their schedule. But, I’m still not sure if I’m ready to bring the Bills back into the top echelon of the Week 13 NFL Power Rankings.

9. Baltimore Ravens (8-3)

Last Week: 10

Well… the Ravens won. I guess. It was about as ugly of a win as you could manage. But, it was a win. Lamar Jackson really needs to clean up the sloppy play and the turnovers if this Ravens team wants to make noise in the playoffs. At this point, I’d be shocked if they fell off and missed entirely. Although, the NFL is weird. So, I almost wouldn’t be shocked. Almost. Especially considering the rough schedule they have coming up.

8. Dallas Cowboys (7-4)

Last Week: 6

Are the Cowboys starting to turn into pretenders? Maybe, maybe not. But, you can’t spin the recent run of form in any way that’s positive. The Raiders looked like the much better team for almost the entire contest this week. Dak was efficient, but the Cowboys couldn’t run the ball.

The defense just got absolutely worked all game. Thank god the Eagles lost, right? That was almost under consideration for being an issue there for a minute! But, if the Cowboys have higher ambitions than a division championship, they’ll need to turn things around.

7. Tennessee Titans (8-4)

Last Week: 5

The Bucs ended their two-game losing streak on Monday night against the Giants. Tom Brady doesn’t typically deal well with being embarrassed, which is usually bad news for the next team up. He made the Giants pay for the sins of the Football Team and Saints with 307 yards and two touchdowns on the night.

There was a really ugly interception thrown deep in Bucs territory early in the second quarter that led to a game-tying touchdown. But, the mistake was compartmentalized and it was basically a slaughter from that point forward.

6. Cincinnati Bengals (7-4)

Last Week: 8

Back on track. The Bengals stumbled a little with back-to-back alarming games against the Jets and Browns. Had they held onto that 11-point lead in the fourth quarter over the Jets, I don’t think the pushback after the Browns game would have been as strong. But, it happened, and now everyone who dismissed the Bengals (including myself) looks pretty stupid. The Cincinnati Bengals are a bona fide contender in 2021 and you can’t convince me otherwise.

5. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (8-3)

Last Week: 7

It’s kind of nuts to think about the fact that Leonard Fournette might be having a better career as a rotational player in Tampa Bay than he ever had as the feature back with the team that drafted him No. 4 overall.

He was absolutely electrifying in Indianapolis this week, and a huge reason the Bucs came from behind to keep their playoff seeding bid intact. Because, that’s pretty much what they’re playing for at this point, right? They have a 3-game lead in the division with six games left to go. So, I’d say probably.

4. Kansas City Chiefs (7-4)

Last Week: 3

I know it’s weird to knock a team down in the Week 13 NFL Power Rankings after a bye week. But the Chiefs are in sole possession of the AFC West after their rough start you say! Only good things happened during the bye week! What even is this trash article!

Well, sorry, but that’s part of the deal with being up this high. When you don’t do anything for a week, teams with big wins like the Packers could move you out of the way. Don’t take it as anything other than logistics.

3. Arizona Cardinals (9-2)

Last Week: 2

Same deal here. The Cardinals saw the Rams fall two games behind them on their bye week. So, how are they falling in the Week 13 NFL Power Rankings, you ask? Keep reading to find out.

2. Green Bay Packers (9-3)

Last Week: 4

A massive victory this week for the Green Bay Packers this week. They absolutely came to play against a Los Angeles Rams team that needed a big win to keep up in the division race. But, Aaron Rodgers was efficient, clinical, and hard to keep in check. AJ Dillon was the baaaad man this week with 90 all purpose yards and a rather photogenic touchdown.

All in all, you should be scared of this Packers team right now. They’re clearly the class of the NFC. In fact, they’re only half a game behind the No. 1 seeded Cardinals, whom they hold a head-to-head tiebreaker over.

1. New England Patriots (8-4)

Last Week: 1

The Patriots spanked the Titans this week, proving they’re worthy of the No. 1 spot. How crazy is it that Bill Belichick seems to be building a third championship caliber era Patriots team with a completely new quarterback? There isn’t any question that Tom Brady was a big part of winning six Super Bowls back in the day. But, perhaps we’ve been too easy to forget the man who made Tom Brady who he is today. The Patriots are back.

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