Home Articles/Editorials 2014 NFL Power Rankings – Week 13

2014 NFL Power Rankings – Week 13

I know Stan is pretty depressed about his Giants, and probably about New York sports in general. Even still, I found it necessary to take a bunch of shots at the Giants, who might be in full tank mode. The Jets could also be tanking, after a deliriously fantastic game in which they threw the ball only 13 times. Now, in case you missed it, I will answer a few questions about that game.

Yes, it was an NFL game. Yes, it occurred in 2014. Yes, I wrote 2014. No, A.D., it definitely happened in A.D. Yes, like the present time. Like, this past Monday. Yes, this is real. Yes, they almost won.

Oh well, Stan. At least the Knicks aren’t tanking…


The “Slightly Less Entertaining Than The Knicks and Nets” Tier

34. New York Jets – Rex Ryan couldn’t have looked more dejected after this loss to the Dolphins. The Jets were in it and had a lot of missed opportunities. Geno overthrew guys, defenders dropped interceptions, there were lapses in coverage and they let the Dolphins hang around long enough and got got. Thats right, they got got. I’m pretty sure Rex Ryan quit at halftime and he’s just hanging around as a formality. And for that…they’re the 34th worst team this week.
33. New York Giants – For once, its Rob that has the Giants ranked too high. Anytime you have a 21-3 lead and blow it, its bad but when you have a 21-3 lead against the Jaguars and blow it, thats saying something. I mean, the Jaguars? How does that even happen? I’m so ready for this season to be over. Fire everyone. I don’t care if they just hired Ben McAdoo. Get him outta here too. Clean slate. Actually I don’t mean that. McAdoo hasn’t been that bad. The offensive line can’t stay healthy. One of our biggest acquisitions was Geoff Schwartz and he’s playing a grand total of two games. Weston Richburg got benched for playing terrible at a position he’s not used to playing and ended up playing that same position again because Adam Snyder got hurt. In fact, they need to fire the medical staff. What the hell is going on with this team?

The “Might Just Beat The Giants” Tier

30. Oakland Raiders – There was a point where I kept defending this team because they rarely got blown out and they showed a lot of fight. Then they went out and lost 52-0 to the Rams. The Rams. Led by Shaun Hill. They let Tre Mason run on them like he was back at Auburn. So yeah…they suck.
29. Tennessee Titans – Don’t worry Titans fans. You play the Giants next. Thats almost guaranteed to be a win. It doesn’t matter that you have Zach Mettenberger at quarterback or a terrible defense. Showing up is half the battle.
28. Washington Redskins – So with RG3 benched for the season, will he be a Redskin next year? I say no, but not because he isn’t good. Redskins management has never been known for its good decisions and this is another example of that. Rob’s pointed it out before, Griffin is a guy who isn’t that far away from the spectacular season he had two years ago. So they bring in a coach that doesn’t play to his strengths the season after he’s come back from injury. Now they’re willing to trade away a former MVP candidate that they traded two first round picks to move up in the draft to acquire. Thats so Redskins.
27. Jacksonville Jaguars – Blake Bortles might be something worth watching in the future but in the meantime this team is less than mediocre. Yet good enough to beat my Giants. Sounds about right. I like what Gus Bradley is building in Jacksonville. You can tell he learned a lot from his time in Seattle. Build through the draft and establish a solid running game and defense. Time will tell.

The “Terrible Coaches” Tier

26. Tampa Bay Buccaneers – How can a team get three turnovers and still lose by one? Oh yeah because they have terrible running backs and a quarterback that cashed in on a season where he played with two All-Pro receivers that are seven feet tall. I feel like if I had enough Red Bulls I could average 3.2 yards per carry too. You could trip and fall forward 18 times and gain more yardage than Doug Martin did.
25. Carolina Panthers – So much for that whole “The Panthers control their own destiny” stuff. With this loss and the Saints win, its pretty much over for Carolina. Why did it take so long for Riverboat Ron to give Jonathan Stewart playing time?
24. Chicago Bears – Here are the results of the Bears’ possessions in the fourth quarter:
Five plays, no runs, PUNT
Two plays, no runs, INTERCEPTION
Three and out, no runs, PUNT
Seven plays, no runs, INTERCEPTION
To be fair, they were down 34-17 and had to come back in the game but they ran the ball a total of EIGHT TIMES!! Not even when they were up 7-0, 7-3, 14-3 or 14-10…but Marc Trestman is a genius right?

The “Too Little, Too Late” Tier

23. Minnesota Vikings – Mike Zimmer looks like he was the right choice as the head coach of the Vikings. The defense and special teams has come up big more than a few times this season and Teddy Bridgewater looks like he’s shaping up to be a competent quarterback. The running game has been held together with duct tape and spit but somehow this team has 5 wins. Its just a shame that they play in a division where they have to see Aaron Rodgers and Calvin Johnson twice a year.
22. Atlanta Falcons – The Falcons caught the Cardinals on a bad day. They’ve been decimated by injury and have a backup quarterback at the helm. Meanwhile, the Falcons keep pace in the NFC and could win their division. They probably won’t, but they could.
21. Houston Texans – Can we just give JJ Watt the MVP award now? He embarrasses linemen, he destroys quarterbacks and he CATCHES TOUCHDOWNS! I love this guy. He’s approaching man crush status.
20. New Orleans Saints – The Saints as a whole have a case of schizophrenia. One week, they look terrible, the next week they look like Super Bowl contenders. Granted, some of the opponents they’ve killed aren’t exactly elite but five passing touchdowns is five passing touchdowns.
19. Buffalo Bills – The Bills defense and special teams deserve an award for this game. Dan Carpenter was on point, the secondary stepped up and the front four didn’t let Cleveland get going on the ground.
18. Cleveland Browns – Brian Hoyer stinks. In a small sample size, Johnny Manziel looked good…or at least dynamic. He moved the ball better, he was exciting to watch and most importantly, he didn’t throw two interceptions the way Brian Hoyer did.

The “Juuuust A Bit Outside” Tier

17. Pittsburgh Steelers – When Rick Pitino coached the Celtics, they were terrible and he pointed out that the great Celtics of yesteryear weren’t walking out of that locker room. Here is a list of former Steelers both living and deceased that (last time I checked) are not walking out of the locker room.
Mean Joe Greene, Casey Hampton; Ernie Stautner; Dwight White; LC Greenwood; Jack Ham; Jack Lambert; Mel Blount; Donnie Shell; etc, etc. You get the point.
16. Baltimore Ravens – The famous Dennis Green rant is the only thing that makes sense to say here. The Ravens had the Chargers right where they wanted them…and they let them off the hook.
15. Kansas City Chiefs – Remember last season when everyone got all excited because the Chiefs were undefeated? Then they lost to the Broncos and went on to go 11-5 then lost in the first round to the Colts? I’m not saying thats going to happen again but it probably will.
14. San Francisco 49ers – Speaking of teams stumbling to the finish, the Niners are third in the NFC West and people are talking about where Jim Harbaugh will coach next year. Colin Kaepernick is playing like garbage, they can’t run the ball effectively and the offense is putting way more pressure o on the defense than they should. I wonder what Harbaugh’s gonna look like in green.
13. St Louis Rams – Oakland. Raiders.

The “It Was Fun While It Lasted” Tier

12. Cincinnati Bengals – It amazes me that this team has 8 wins because they’ve only looked like they should have won three of them. Maybe four. None of it matters anyway. Andy Dalton will fade when it matters and the rest of the team won’t be able to hide his mistakes the way they did against the Bucs.
11. Detroit Lions – These guys are like the NFC version of the Bengals. They have a quarterback that could implode at any time, a star wide receiver that deserves better and a really good defense thats strength is in the interior defensive line. They both even have conservative black coaches. The question is, will Matthew Stafford let down the Lions the way we all expect Andy Dalton to let down the Bengals.
10. Arizona Cardinals – I guess its not outside the realm of possibility that these guys could be playing a home game in February but Drew Stanton is holding them back. Not having Larry Fitzgerald in the lineup hurts them, not to mention the fact that they have a rash of injuries piling up every week. Its a shame too…Bruce Arians is a hell of a coach.
9. Dallas Cowboys – While they’ll still make the playoffs, its December now and we all know the Cowboys (Tony Romo) tend to fade when we get closer to the end of the year. Still, this is a different team with its strength in the running game.
8. Philadelphia Eagles – The defense is going to screw over the offense whenever they’re on the field but the offense is really really good.
7. Miami Dolphins – The Dolphins offense barely showed up and they still beat the Jets. Now, I’ve bashed the Jets enough so I’ll praise the Dolphins defense. I’ve talked about Cameron Wake before but no one seems to be talking about Olivier Vernon. I watched that kid play at the U and I knew he belonged in the NFL and he’s proving it. He was all over the place making plays against the Jets and he’s going to be a household name soon.
6. Indianapolis Colts – They destroy the bad teams and lose to the good ones. Its a shame because there are no bad teams in the playoffs. I’m also a little curious as to why they don’t take a look at Ray Rice. I know they found a gem in Boom Herron but I think Rice could give them more production than what they’re getting from Trent Richardson.
5. San Diego Chargers – Anyone else feel like the Chargers are hanging on by a thread that could snap at any time? They keep winning games but they never look all that impressive or dominant. I guess thats a quality a winning team should possess right?

The “Pack Your Bags For Arizona” Tier

4. Seattle Seahawks – The Seahawks defense is getting healthy at the right time. With the right teams fading, theres no reason why they can’t go back to the NFC Championship. This time, it might be tougher for them to get back to the Super Bowl because the Packers are for real.
3. New England Patriots – Its a classic Belichick move to lose to the Packers. I’m not saying they should have won, but they definitely could have. It was pretty close. The Pats know that winning regular season games mean nothing and they know theres a pretty good chance they could see the Packers again in the Super Bowl. And if they do, it should be a fun game to watch.
2. Denver Broncos – Broncos fans have reasons to be concerned with Julius Thomas out but smart money says they’ll hold him out until he’s ready to play. They’d obviously rather have him at 100% in the playoffs.
1. Green Bay Packers – Name one receiver that cuts back receptions to the middle of the field better than Jordy Nelson? The whole team is clicking, their confidence is high and theres only a couple of teams I can see challenging them in the NFC. Am I prepared to call them a lock for the Super Bowl? No, but anyone who would bet against them is foolish.


The “Hope Our Coach’s Kids Are Sociable…” Tier

32. Oakland Raiders

31. Tennessee Titans

30. New York Jets

29. Tampa Bay Buccaneers

28. Carolina Panthers

27. Jacksonville Jaguars

26. Washington Redskins

25. New York Giants

24. Atlanta Falcons

23. Chicago Bears

…because they might be looking for a new set of friends next September. Tony Sparano, Rex Ryan, and Mike Smith are as good as gone.

Ken Whisenhunt, Lovie Smith, and Jay Gruden will probably be spared with the excuse that it was their first year on the job.

Gus Bradley will probably be spared because in Jacksonville the first few seasons all count as your first year on the job.

Does Ron Rivera have enough good will banked from last year’s aberration to overlook the fact that he has been a horrible head coach before and since?

Also, the Marc Trestman-era looked very promising as recently as September, didn’t it?

Tom Coughlin might not have to worry his kids making friends because they are close to joining him as AARP members. If he treats them anything like he treats his rookie punters, than I imagine they won’t even miss him much.

And yes, I mostly put that in there to remind Stan that 2014 is not the all-time low for the Coughlin-era Giants.

The “If We Go 8-8 At Least We Won’t Be Remembered For Winning A Home Playoff Game We Didn’t Deserve” Tier

22. New Orleans Saints

Ladies and gentlemen, your 2014 New Orleans Saints.

Then again, on the other hand this is going to start getting really interesting. The Saints can be the first team to win their division with a losing record since the 2010 Seahawks. That team won the NFC West at 7-9, and was an 11.5 point underdog at home in the Wild Card Round.

The team the Seahawks played that year was, of course, the New Orleans Saints. Not only did they play the Saints, but they played the defending champion Saints. The Saints were an 11-5 Wild Card team that season, and failed to win the division for two reasons. They had a weird stretch near the beginning of the season where they didn’t play very well, and because an Atlanta Falcons team that barely missed the playoffs the previous year made a leap and put together a surprising season. Much like the Cardinals are in the process of doing this season.

Now, with four games left to play and the Seahawks and Cardinals trending in opposite directions, there is still a chance the Seahawks win the NFC West and this is a non-story. The Falcons are still technically winning the NFC South due to a tiebreaker. Still, if God loves football, I want to see the Seahawks go into the Superdome as a big favorite during the first week of the playoffs, with probably the weirdest historical circumstances I could imagine on the line.

The “We Can Still Ruin Somebody Else’s Playoff Hopes” Tier

21. Minnesota Vikings

20. Cleveland Browns

19. St. Louis Rams

18. Buffalo Bills

17. Houston Texans

First of all, good for you, Stan, for putting the Rams at 13. It is tough to put a team that high this late when it has no shot of making the playoffs. Still, they are fun to watch and worth attention. I digress…

The Vikings play the Lions and Dolphins.

The Browns have the Colts, Bengals, and Ravens (and an outside shot of sneaking in).

The Rams have the Cardinals and Seahawks (and seem to take pleasure in it.)

The Bills play the Broncos, Packers, and Patriots, and can at least mess up someone’s first-round bye.

The Texans get the Colts and Ravens, and two Jaguars games that leaves them with a possibility that 4-0 gets them in as well, or even 3-1 and some help. Also, they have a player who gets what he wants on every play, and what he wants most is to eliminate happiness from his opponent.

Luckily, he is charitable, and transfers that happiness directly to those who get to watch him play.

The “Don’t Give Up On The Playoffs Because One Wild Card Team Is Getting A First-Round Bye” Tier

16. Cincinnati Bengals

That would be the team that gets to play the Bengals of course.

By the way, this Bengals team is still loaded with talent, despite injuries. They have a ton of weapons, a bunch of really good players on the defense, and an offensive line that vacillates between “getting the job done” and “bullying people around.

They also have a quarterback who has thrown 13 touchdowns and 13 interceptions, and has given zero evidence that he will ever win a playoff game.

That is an unfair statement actually, because judging quarterbacks on wins is a silly an outdated line of thinking. Therefore, I shall rephrase.

Andy Dalton has done nothing in his short career that would lead me to believe that he will ever be one of the 15 best players on a team that wins a playoff game.

The good news? Neither has Eli Manning, and that guy has eight playoff wins and two Super Bowl MVP Trophies.

So expect Andy Dalton to get into the playoffs once again, and to throw the ball to the wrong team a bunch, or just miss receivers completely, like he has done the past three years.

Then expect him to go back to watching playoff football at home in round two, like he has done the past three years.

Keep the streak alive, you freckle-faced nincompoop.

In other news:

What’s the difference between a ginger and a vampire?

One is a pale, bloodsucking creature that avoids the sun. The other is a vampire.

Why are the Harry Potter films unrealistic?

A ginger kid has 2 friends!

What’s the difference between this joke and sex?

Gingers will get this joke.

What do you call a ginger at a party?


What do extinct dinosaurs and Gingers have in common?

Not enough.

How do gingers reach orgasm?

All alone.

Thanks to Jokes4Us.com for the help on this one.

The “Why Does It Feel Like None Of Us Are Making The Playoffs?” Tier

15. Kansas City Chiefs

14. Baltimore Ravens

13. Pittsburgh Steelers

12. San Francisco 49ers

11. San Diego Chargers

10. Miami Dolphins

It kind of feels like at some points all six of these teams’ fans have said at one point or another something along the lines of “If only we hadn’t lost to [team x] we would be in the playoffs.” Yet, two of those AFC teams are going to get in anyway, unless the Texans or Browns jump them somehow. The 49ers themselves still have kind of an inside track to get in, with the Raiders, Seahawks, Chargers, and Cardinals still on their slate.

Funny thing is, the Bengals could have been in the same predicament had they lost the 37-37 tie with the Panthers. But instead, Andy Dalton’s 13 touchdowns to 13 interception season will get him in the same conversation in the AFC as Tom Brady, Peyton Manning, and Andrew Luck.

Hey Stan, the Chargers play the Patriots, Broncos, 49ers, and Chiefs in their last four games. Either they make the playoffs and they really deserve to be ranked in the top five, or they miss the playoffs and they are outside the top ten. They haven’t won a game without last second heroics in over two months. They’ve been blown out twice since then, including 37-0 against the Dolphins. They also beat the Raiders twice in that 4-3 stretch, by a combined ten points. That schedule is brutal, and you are setting yourself up to look really smart or really dumb.

The “We Are Pretending That Starting 9-1 Was Enough To Lock Up A Playoff Spot” Tier

9. Arizona Cardinals

The Cardinals have a desperate Chiefs team with nobody for Patrick Peterson to cover. Then they have the scariest last place divisional opponent you could imagine. This is great, because they finish the season against the Seahawks and 49ers, both of whom will be dying for a win to make the playoffs. If they go 0-3 and beat the 49ers in week 17 they will get in, but I’m sure they’d like to avoid putting Drew Stanton in any must-win games, which is a sad enough reality for a team that had Super Bowl hopes just two weeks ago.

The “We Really Need To Beat The Eagles Tier

8. Dallas Cowboys

The Cowboys are sitting at 8-4, knowing that 10-6 probably leaves them as the odd man out since they lose tiebreakers to the 49ers and Cardinals. With the Bears, Eagles, Colts, and Redskins left on the dockets, they should feel good about going 3-1 in that stretch, especially if that includes a win in Philadelphia.

The “Marky Mark Could Do Anything At Any Time” Tier

7. Philadelphia Eagles

The Eagles have to win one of their next two games against the Seahawks and Cowboys, both at home. Mark Sanchez is their quarterback. I do not know what to expect, but I do know I want to watch him playing football in January again.

The “I Feel Oddly Comfortable About Their Playoff Chances” Tier

6. Detroit Lions

5. Seattle Seahawks

These teams have some rough tiebreakers to think of at 8-4 and both in second place in their divisions. The Lions will lose to the Cardinals, while the Seahawks will cede positioning to the Cowboys. Still, those defenses play unstoppable football more often than not, and I just can’t imagine them missing the dance at this point.

The “Locked In” Tier

4. Indianapolis Colts

3. Denver Broncos

2. New England Patriots

1. Green Bay Packers

I don’t know if the Packers are better than the Patriots, because I think that game was pretty even, but I’m pretty sure those are the best two teams in the NFL, and I know through 12 games that these are the four teams that have played the best, especially over the last eight weeks.

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