NFL Power Rankings: Week 16

Tom Brady continues to impress, as the Patriots clinch their 8th straight AFC East crown.


The New England Patriots continue to lead the pack in the BLTD Power Rankings, after clinching the AFC East and a first-round bye on Sunday afternoon. A few shifts, as a few key teams fell this weekend, but the playoff picture remains as packed as ever. Only two weeks away from the playoffs – who will make the cut?

Rank
Last Week
Team
Record
Comments
32
32
cleveland
0-14
Cleveland looked over matched and out manned on Sunday against the Bills. There appears to be no end in sight, as the Browns stare down 0-16 with RGIII at the helm.
31
31
san-francisco
1-13
The losing continues. San Francisco is a bad football team playing bad football. The 49ers had no answer for Atlanta's offensive attack on Sunday, You have to assume Chip Kelly can't wait for this season to end.
30
30
jacksonville
2-12
Jacksonville had a magnificent meltdown on Sunday and it finally cost Gus Bradley his job. Jacksonville is further up a creek without a paddle.
29
29
chicago
3-11
Chicago was so, so, so close to getting themselves a signature victory in 2016. A win on Sunday would've ruined Green Bay's chances at a playoff berth. Instead, the Bears defense broke at the last minute. For shame.
28
28
los-angeles
4-10
First game post-Fisher and the story remains the same. Los Angeles has a bunch of talent but just can't coach it all together. Someone will really enjoy this team next year, for now it is all about just finishing the year.
27
27
new-jets
4-10
The J-E-T-S suck suck suck. I've always wanted to say that here and now it is applicable. Also, they almost got Bryce Petty murdered.
26
26
san-diego
5-9
San Diego almost pulled out an improbable victory at home against the Raiders. After falling behind late, Phil Rivers threw a clutch interception. Good work!
25
25
cincinnati
5-8-1
The first half of Sunday's game, the Bengals looked like the 2015 version of themselves. They shut down Ben Roethlisberger, Antonio Brown and LeVeon Bell - very impressive stuff. But then, the 2016 Bengals showed up in the 2nd half and allowed 15 unanswered points. Chalk that up as another loss!
24
24
arizona
5-8-1
Arizona had a great day offensively (425 yards and 41 points) and a horrible day defensively. The Cardinals tattered defense allowed 488 total yards and 48 points. Just throw the game film away, this one isn't worth watching again.
23
23
philadelphia
5-9
The Eagles were in win-it-now mode on Sunday. A point away from a tie game, Doug Pederson decided to go for the victory..and why not? Philadelphia has nothing but a record to play for at this point. Things didn't work out but kudos to the Eagles for going for the throat.
22
22
carolina
6-8
Carolina had the opportunity to build on their much better second half of their season and play spoilers. The Panthers did both things very well. Carolina will look to build on their late season heroics next week.
21
20
new-orleans
6-8
What a day for Drew Brees. In a game that quickly defined itself as a shootout, Brees threw for 389 yards and 4 TDs. It's a shame that this defense is historically bad because Brees is having a wonderful season under center.
20
18
minnesota
7-7
What are you doing, Minnesota? Indianapolis blew the Vikings out of the water today - once considered a Super Bowl contender, the Vikings are likely to miss the playoffs and could finish under .500. Can Teddy Bridgewater come back or no?
19
21
indianapolis
7-7
Indianapolis should be fighting for a playoff berth but they're useless and can't win easy games. That was not the case Sunday. Frank Gore continues to look like he did in San Francisco and Andrew Luck didn't make any mistakes. Hooray mediocrity!
18
19
buffalo
7-7
Buffalo did what they needed to do against Cleveland. It should be noted that LeSean McCoy was a machine on Sunday - 19 rushes, 153 yards and 2 TDs. Dang, man. Don't waste this guy's talent.
17
16
washington
7-6-1
Washington screwed themselves here, man. They were so close to locking up the easy path to a Wild Card berth and now, they are going to need some help from multiple angles. Good work, idiots.
16
17
baltimore
8-6
Baltimore got so lucky on Sunday. Philadelphia went for the season kill shot and could not get the 2-point conversion to go. The Ravens live to see another day.
15
13
tampa-bay
8-6
Tampa Bay began the evening looking overpowered by the high-power Dallas offense. As the evening progressed, Tampa Bay settled in and looked well. Unfortunately for the Buccaneers, good enough was not enough on Sunday night.
14
15
green-bay
8-6
Ooh, Green Bay! You were so close to choking the season away to the Chicago Bears. A late Aaron Rodgers to Jordy Nelson aerial bomb setup a game-winning field goal, with time expiring, but that should not have been that close. Green Bay continues to control their own destiny with 2 weeks remaining.
13
6
denver
8-6
Denver continues to rely on its defense, while not being able to do much offensively. A definite recipe for playoff disaster. Denver is staring down the barrel of not making the playoffs.
12
14
tennessee
8-6
Tennessee is hanging onto all hope in the AFC South. This season was supposed to be a lost year but they're fighting for a division title with 2 weeks remaining. What a clutch kick by Succop, by the way.
11
12
houston
8-6
Houston is doing something, that's for sure. They bench Brock Osweiler (finally) because he was terrible. Tom Savage came to save the day (!!!) and is going to be the guy who tries to claw onto the AFC South title.
10
11
miami
9-5
Matt Moore started his first game since Week 17 of the 2011 season and managed to throw 4 TDs. Dang man, playing the Jets ain't so bad! Miami continues full speed ahead toward an AFC Wild Card berth.
9
8
detroit
9-5
Detroit had a chance to take a stranglehold on the NFC North but instead ran into the New York Giants defensive buzzsaw. You can't really blame Detroit for their performance - New York is just that good.
8
10
pittsburgh
9-5
Pittsburgh allowed 20 points before the half and then shut it down in the second half. What a tale of two halves. Pittsburgh continues to control their destiny in the AFC North, with a matchup against Baltimore coming up. on Christmas night.
7
9
seattle
9-4-1
Seattle handled Los Angeles, as expected, and clinched themselves the NFC West in the process. Seattle is sitting pretty with the playoffs approaching.
6
7
atlanta
9-5
Devonta Freeman led the attack on Sunday afternoon, running for 139 yards and 3 TDs. Matt Ryan again was good enough, as the Falcons hold onto the NFC South lead.
5
2
kansas-city
10-4
Kansas City played itself on Sunday afternoon. Andy Reid called a timeout, right before (ex-Chief) Ryan Succop missed his first kick. With a second chance, Succop nailed the field goal and Kansas City is likely headed to a Wild Card berth. Tough break for the Chiefs.
4
5
new-giants
10-4
Let me be the first to say - this team looks SCARY good. Like when they beat Tom Brady twice in the Super Bowl good. The Giants offense has been OK but their defense has been stellar. Watch out for the G-Men, as this season wraps.
3
4
oakland
11-3
Oakland didn't necessarily blow San Diego out of the water Sunday but one might think the insane expectations caught up to them. Oakland grabbed a victory late and clinched their first playoff berth since 2002. Good on you, Oakland. Enjoy it, before your team moves to Las Vegas.
2
3
dallas
12-2
Dallas is boasting quite possibly the best QB/RB duo in the league with Prescott and Elliott. No doubt about it, Elliott will win the Rookie of the Year and garner MVP votes as well. It is quite difficult for anyone to stop Elliott in the Cowboys backfield.
1
1
new-england
12-2
New England naturally struggled offensively against a strong Denver defense, only scoring 16 points. It is what New England's defense that was impressive - 3 points allowed in a tough environment. Good football teams find ways to win. The Patriots clinched their NFL-record 8th straight AFC East title and a first-round bye with this victory.

Written by Ryan Wolfe

Ryan Wolfe is the founder and editor-in-chief of BLTD Sports. He can be heard on the BLTD Podcast. Ryan's writing is also featured over at TheHockeyWriters.com.

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