The World’s Most Prestigious Power Rankings: Week 15

01. New England Patriots (11-2): Tom Brady looks as good as ever and the defense is one of the best-kept secrets in football. (+1)

02. Dallas Cowboys (11-2): Dak Prescott seems to be regressing a bit and the Giants knew it. Did you see how they played conservatively on offense because they didn’t think Dak could beat them. Turned out they were right. (-1)

03. Kansas City Chiefs (10-3): In a very good position for the second seed, but they need to get Justin Houston, Tamba Hali and Dee Ford healthy. (+2)

04. Oakland Raiders (10-3): Huge loss in KC means the Raiders might have blown their chance for a first round bye. (-1)

05. Seattle Seahawks (8-4-1): They look terrible. Then they look great. Then they look terrible again. Defense has taken a step back without Earl Thomas so Russell Wilson cannot be throwing 5 picks in a single game. (-2)

06. Pittsburgh Steelers (8-5): Le’Veon Bell decided to take the title of Best Running Back in the NFL away from Zeke. It worked, at least for this week. (+2)

07. New York Giants (9-4): I haven’t really believed in these guys, but that win over Dallas was huge. I was sure their spending spree on defense would backfire, but it looks like I was wrong. Congrats to GM Jerry Reese. (+5)

08. Detroit Lions (9-4): Cardiac cats continue to flirt with disaster only to come out on top. How long can this continue? (-1)

09. Atlanta Falcons (8-5): Went up 42-0 against Jeff Fisher’s hapless Rams.. without their their top 2 wideouts. It’s been a great season for Matt Ryan. (NC)

10. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (8-5): Since week 10 the Bucs defense has recorded 14 takeaways and given up 12.8 points per game, both tops in the NFL. (+1)

11. Washington Redskins (7-5-1): (+2)

12. Green Bay Packers (7-6): They’re back. Because of Aaron Rodgers (16-2 at home in December games), they’re back. (+3)

13. Denver Broncos (8-5): Defense is still magnificent, but the offense is going to cheat them out of a playoff game. Upcoming schedule is two home games against the Patriots and Raiders around a road game in KC. Forget it. (-7)

14. Baltimore Ravens (7-6): Their top-ranked defense was torched by Tom Brady & Co. for nearly 500 yards, costing the Ravens a share of first place in the NFC North. Playing from behind isn’t their forte.

15. Tennessee Titans (7-6): Defense bounced back after an embarrassing effort against Chicago and the rushing attack is just punishing. (+6)

16. Minnesota Vikings (7-6): Another solid performance from the D and Sam Bradford did just enough. (NC)

17. Houston Texans (7-6): Considering how bad the QB play is, it is amazing this team has won 7 games and might very well repeat at AFC South champs. (+7)

18. Miami Dolphins (8-5): Big win in the rain over the Cards, but a big loss, with Ryan Tannehill  now out for the season. Fortunately, veteran backup Matt Moore gets the Jets next, so 9 wins shouldn’t be a problem, at least. (NC)

19. Buffalo Bills (6-7): Le’Veon Bell left his cleat marks all over Rex Ryan’s reputation. The NFL’s longest playoff drought will continue for another season. (-2)

20. Carolina Panthers (5-8): Defense woke up and turned in a big performance, but the offense still stinks. Grudge match on Monday night against Josh Norman & the Skins looms. (+6)

21. Arizona Cardinals (5-7-1): Another baffling loss. The Cards have played so far below their talent level this year. This lost season is a complete mystery to me and their slim playoff chances were extinguished last Sunday. (-7)

22. Cincinnati Bengals (5-7-1): Still better than the Browns. (+1)

23. Indianapolis Colts (6-7): Inability to beat a staggering team like the Texans should keep Andrew Luck & Co. at home in January… again. (-1)

24. New Orleans Saints (5-8): Drew Brees has thrown 6 INT and 0 TD over the last 2 weeks. In the immortal words of Vince Lombardi, “What the hell is going on out there?” (-4)

25. Philadelphia Eagles (5-8): Wentz was struggling mightily coming into last Sunday’s game against the Redskins,b ut playing that Washington defense made him look like a budding star again. (NC)

26. San Diego Chargers (5-8): Phillip Rivers has played poorly two weeks in a row and now they’ve lost their other two best players, RB Melvin Gordon and DE Joey Bosa, to injury. (-7)

27. Chicago Bears (3-10): Another team that is still playing hard despite enduring another lost season. Matt Barkley is showing that he may never be a star, but he belongs somewhere in this league. (

28. New York Jets (4-9): It looked like the Jets were quitting on the season, but head coach Todd Bowles got them to man-up and play ball. Good for him. (NC)

29. Los Angeles Rams (4-9): The biggest mysteries about the firing of Jeff Fisher are why it took so long and why would anyone give him a contract extension, as the team did earlier this year? (-11)

30. Jacksonville Jaguars (2-11): Gus Bradley will probably be the next coach fired.

31. San Francisco 49ers (1-12): Coming close to a few wins, but they can’t close the game out. (NC)

32. Cleveland Browns (0-13): Did you see that idiotic flea-flicker Hue Jackson called? And that RG3 threw into triple-coverage? From his own end zone? What a mess this team is. (NC)

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