*With 14 teams’ playoff hopes eliminated, we will solely consider the 18 remaining teams with playoff hopes in this week’s power rankings.
1. Kansas City Chiefs (14-1)
While the Chiefs have won their last 7 games by one possession, you never got the feeling that they would actually lose. They seem to be letting off the gas pedal down the stretch in preparation for the playoffs. It would be very surprising to see this Chiefs team now perform like this in the playoffs. Expect fireworks come Divisional Round Weekend.
2. Green Bay Packers (12-3)
The Green Bay Packers had a big 40-14 win over the Tennessee Titans, showing what a playoff road through Lambeau Field could look like for opposing teams. A win over the Chicago Bears this week will lock them in at the #1 seed in the NFC and home field advantage throughout the playoffs.
3. Buffalo Bills (12-3)
The Buffalo Bills’ offense seems to have caught fire throughout the last stretch of the season, averaging 34.6 points per game in their last 5 games. The concern resides in their inexperience in the playoffs, and their lackluster ability to run the ball.
4. New Orleans Saints (11-4)
The Saints’ offense is starting to regain their footing with Drew Brees back under center. Alvin Kamara exploded with 6 TDs in their dominant 52-33 win over the Minnesota Vikings. The concern is their inability to perform in the playoffs. From 2010 to 2019, the Saints made the playoffs 6 times, with an overall record of 4-6.
5. Seattle Seahawks (11-4)
The Seattle Seahawks came up with a big 20-9 victory over the L.A. Rams to clinch the NFC West Division. The defense has definitely gone leaps and bounds from the beginning of the year, but the offense seems to be struggling. However, we know that Pete and Russ find ways to win.
6. Los Angeles Rams (9-6)
The Rams have arguably one of the best defenses in the league, but the offense is extremely inconsistent. Jared Goff is having an up and down year, and they lack a steady run game. The concern is that the Rams’ defense can only hold on so long for the offense, as you saw in the Seattle game.
7. Baltimore Ravens (10-5)
The Baltimore Ravens are definitely beginning to put things together before they make their playoff run. They have averaged 37 points per game in their last 4 games. While a Steelers defense could give them trouble, a Ravens offense could give a Buffalo defense some trouble.
8. Tennessee Titans (10-5)
Yes, the Titans got blown out by the Green Bay Packers in the Frozen Tundra, but we all know what the Titans can do in the playoffs.
9. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (10-5)
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers have one of the most talented offenses in the league, but their defenses is astounding as well. The story of the Buccaneers’ defense has been inconsistency and lack of chemistry. They are one of the most threatening teams to the NFC conference, but it just depends what Tampa Bay team shows up.
10. Pittsburgh Steelers (12-3)
After starting the season 11-0 the Steelers have seemed to be getting exposed. Losing 4 straight and trailing the Colts 7-24 in the third quarter. They have the best defense in the league, but their offensive rushing attack is horrific. They have the dynamic duo at wideout in JuJu and Claypool, but Big Ben can’t hit his targets with a lackluster rushing attack.
11. Cleveland Browns (10-5)
The Cleveland Browns are one of the most intriguing teams going into the playoffs. A team who can put up points and have one of the best rushing attacks in Nick Chubb and Kareem Hunt. They have an excellent pass rush led by Myles Garrett, but otherwise, their defense and inconsistency is their weakness going into the playoffs.
12. Indianapolis Colts (10-5)
There is a very small chance that the Colts pose a threat to many teams in the AFC. They have one of the top defenses in the league, and Phillip Rivers can make plays but they lack a single superstar.
13. Arizona Cardinals (8-7)
Kyler Murray is extremely inconsistent. In their 12-20 loss to the 49ers last week, Murray threw for 247 yards, 0 TDs, 1 INT, on 31-50 passing. However, they have shown that they can light up the scoreboard. Kenyan Drake can be an effective back, with D-Hop at wideout. The defense has posed to be a bit shaky at times as well.
14. Miami Dolphins (10-5)
The miracle that Brian Flores has pulled off as the Dolphins have become playoff contenders. Behind the quarterback duo in Tua Tagovailoa and Ryan Fitzpatrick, the Dolphins have had some ugly and miraculous wins. The passing defense is one of the most dangerous in the league, behind star corner, Xavien Howard.
15. Washington Football Team (6-9)
The Washington Football Team could be the biggest threat to any team in the wildcard. Their ability to win ugly and put up points on the defense and offensive sides of the ball. Also, Antonio Gibson and J.D. McKissic are an incredible backfield. However, without Alex Smith under center, the offense simply doesn’t run the same
16. Chicago Bears (8-7)
The Chicago Bears aren’t extremely dangerous. They have been pin balling between Trubiski and Foles, a messy quarterback situation. Their defense has been pretty good, while David Montgomery has been putting in work on the ground.