NFL Power Rankings: Week 15

Posted: December 22, 2011 by vindanton in Pro Sports

By Vin D’Anton

1. Green Bay Packers (1): I think everyone pretty much feels the same way; that loss was probably good for them. The players are upset, but you get a feeling that McCarthy and the front office are a little happy because injuries are mounting and it’s time to rest. Cake walk against the now Josh McCown led Bears this week…Merry Christmas NFL Fans.

2. New Orleans Saints (5): Drew Brees for MVP? With Rodgers undefeated season out of the way, it is a possibility. The thing that still bothers me is that they are not great on the road. They need to win out and pray for a Frisco loss if they want that two seed. Big home game Monday Night against divisional foe Falcons.

3. San Francisco 49ers (6): Even with a healthy Ben, you feel like they still would have won that game. They were more physical then Pittsburgh, which NO ONE does. Home field is slim, so just wrap up the two seed. Navarro Bowman for Defensive Player of the Year?

4. New England Patriots (7): They escaped “The Holy Land” with a win and the division title, so good job. Defense still stinks and with Andre Carter out, the pass rush may struggle, which means more time for the opposing quarterbacks. That offense is amazing, but can it carry them in the playoffs? It hasn’t in a while now.

5. Baltimore Ravens (2): Completely manhandled once again on the road. Sure, San Diego is on fire, but that is no excuse. John got an early Christmas present from Jim on Monday Night, so they need to win out and get that division title and the two seed. They are fantastic at home.

6. Houston Texans (3): Yuck. Pretty bad loss at home against Carolina. Wade Phillips is the MVP of that team I think. They got the Colts on Thursday Night and they would love to mess things up a little bit. Is T.J. Yates the guy for the postseason?

7. Pittsburgh Steelers (4): The lights should have stayed out. They were out hit up and down the field by a team that plays like them. With the Rams and Browns remaining, a Ravens loss would be huge. Throw in a Texans loss, they are then the second seed. Don’t be shocked if things go their way.

8. Atlanta Falcons (9): Way to come back home and beat up a lowly team. That’s what good teams do. Win one of your last two, and you’re in. Tough one on the road against New Orleans Monday Night. Matty Ice will need to lead them if they want to win. He is playing as well as anyone right now.

9. Detroit Lions (11): Wow, the Cardiac Cats show some guts and pull out a win on the road. Calvin Johnson is unreal, and the defense showed up in the second half. Oh, and Ndamukong Suh blocked that kick…he is vital. “Win and In” scenario at home this week against the red hot Chargers. Ford Field is going to be shaking. What a story (once again).

10. Denver Broncos (8): Tebow put up nearly 30 points. Where was the defense? Show me something against Brady. Tebow’s only two losses are at home, so expect a win on the road this week against the dead Bills. With some help and a W, they win the West.

11. New York Jets (10): Philly is hot right now with everyone healthy, so they get a pass on that one. Santonio Holmes doesn’t though. Wake up man, don’t give them more reason to hate on your team and not even show up in pretty much the entire first half. Their long awaited match up with the Giants is Saturday with their home crowd behind them. Expect Rex’s best shot.

12. Dallas Cowboys (13): Good bounce back win against a bad team on a short week and tough loss. They really are a different team than the last few years. With Felix now hurt, will it affect the offense? We’ll see in a showdown at “Jerry World” against the Eagles Saturday.

13. Cincinnati Bengals (14): Beat a team they were supposed to. Good for them. They are hungry for a playoff berth and are highly motivated. A.J. Green’s injury is something to look out for. Big game at home against the Cardinals who are rolling as of late. Hopefully they fill the house for this one.

14. Seattle Seahawks (18): They may be playing the best football in the league right now. Marshawn Lynch, well enough said, but even Tavaris Jackson made some great throws in bad weather. Big showdown at home against the Niners Saturday; San Fran hasn’t allowed a rushing TD all year…Marshawn will be hungry (for some Skittles) to end that streak and continue his own.

15. Oakland Raiders (16): That one hurt. Why Rolando McClain was with a safety attempting to cover Calvin Johnson down field is mind boggling to me. With some help and winning out, they can actually clinch. Palmer has to start making great throws. Tough trip to Arrowhead this weekend…just ask Green Bay.

16. San Diego Chargers (21): Red, red hot. They destroyed Baltimore in every way Sunday Night. They are not dead and can win the West still or even a wild card. Big one against Detroit this weekend. Let’s see if they can continue the magic…will be tough in that environment though.

17. New York Giants (12): Disgraceful performance against the Redskins Sunday. They disappoint a lot and play down to every opponent. Lose and your pretty much done, hell I’ll say it; LOSE AND IT’S OVER. They’ll need to be on their A game as Rex will be pulling out all the stops.

18. Arizona Cardinals (19): Wow, they don’t stop fighting. They are serious about this run and John Skelton should play. Kolb will be starting next year, but you’re winning with Skelton. See where it takes you! What have you go to lose?

19. Philadelphia Eagles (20): Here they come. Far from over for Reid and the gang. Looking at the schedules, you have to believe that this is all going to bounce their way. Only thing is, will the Giants beat Dallas in Week 17 if it comes down to that…highly doubtful. They are playing with confidence for once.

20. Tennessee Titans (15): Putrid loss to a winless team. You might as well kiss the season goodbye after that one. Let’s see Jake Locker for the rest of the way…he looks good.

21. Kansas City Chiefs (22): Greatest upset this year. Romeo Crennel is a heck of defensive coordinator and what a way to get your first win as an interim Head Coach. Can you believe that if they win out and a lot of things go their way, they’re in?! Bizarre.

22. Chicago Bears (17): Sad because they were looking great before Cutler got hurt. Any Chicago fans that dislike him are now learning why Jerry Angelo made that big trade. Josh McCown versus Aaron Rodgers on the “Frozen Tundra” is going to be rough.

23. Miami Dolphins (23): The offense played great in the snow of all things. Reggie’s career high in rushing yards was definitely exciting for next year, as well as Brandon Marshall who is continuing to pile up stats. Big question: Is Matt Moore the quarterback next year?

24. Carolina Panthers (25): Cam! Woe Cam! Nice road win and great job by the defense. This team is up and coming. Cam is going to break the rookie passing yards record held by Peyton Manning. What a year for the rook.

25. Washington Redskins (26): Way to manhandle a divisional opponent on the road like that. They might be the most underrated defense in the league this year. Orakpo and Kerrigan will be exciting for years to come. Mike Shanahan might be the only secure coach in the NFC East right now.

26. Buffalo Bills (27): Still almost pulled one out against Miami, but you know things are bad when Ralph Wilson Stadium is empty and it’s snowing out. Chan Gailey might be gone now, and what to do with that Ryan Fitzpatrick contract.

27. Jacksonville Jaguars (24): Good ole’ fashion but whoopin’ from the Falcons last Thursday Night. They are young and injured…what else do we expect? They are excited about their new owner though, who wants to keep them in Jacksonville.

28. Cleveland Browns (29): They look bad with this whole Colt McCoy concussion situation. Very disappointed with Mike Holmgren and the league is doing something to prevent this from happening again. Keep Seneca Wallace in these last two games by the way.

29. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (28): There were numerous occasions where they could have came back against Dallas, but the offense is shot. Raheem is going to be gone. You can’t sell an eight game losing streak to a fan base that doesn’t even go to games. They need someone to help Josh Freeman grow.

30. Minnesota Vikings (30): Christian Ponder has cooled off, but that’s ok. This is the time for that. They miss Sidney Rice so go find a receiver this off-season. The Saints were just too much for that defense.

31. Indianapolis Colts (32): They move up after beating a .500 team and nearly coming back against New England two weeks ago. They have a young defensive stud in Pat Angerer.

32. St. Louis Rams (31): They have been so bad as of late that I have to put them at the last spot. It is a shame, but Spags is most likely gone. Back to square one.

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