The NFL power rankings for Week 13 are starting to arrive as another full week of pro football action will take over. As of the latest weekend of action, including the Thanksgiving holiday games, several teams are still in prime position for playoff spots. Other squads are still clinging to hopes of snagging a seed. Teams like the New England Patriots, Oakland Raiders, and, of course, the Dallas Cowboys seem like strong contenders. Meanwhile, the Denver Broncos may need to put in some work after the result of Sunday Night Football. Here’s the latest look at the movers and shakers, the current NFL playoff picture, and how the top 10 looks ahead of this upcoming week’s schedule.
During last night’s wild game, two AFC West foes squared off at Sports Authority Field in Denver, Colorado. According to USA Today, the Broncos gambled in overtime with an attempted 62-yard field goal. The kick was wide, and the Chiefs received the ball in good field position. With about a minute or so remaining, Alex Smith and company moved the ball close enough for kicker Cairo Santos to bounce a field goal in off the left upright. A 30-27 victory is in the books for the Chiefs, who moved ahead of Denver now in the division to keep pace with the Raiders.
Three teams that have been near the top of the rankings over the past weeks are the Raiders, the New England Patriots, and the Dallas Cowboys. All three recorded Week 12 victories, with NFL MVP candidate Tom Brady leading the Pats to a comeback win over the New York Jets and the Raiders surviving the Panthers with a defensive stop late. The Cowboys enjoyed a Happy Thanksgiving, feasting on a victory over division rivals Washington to move to 10-1 on their season. Quarterback Dak Prescott and Ezekiel Elliott have been “the story” of the season and continue to run away from the rest of the league, but they have yet to face any other teams in the top half of the power rankings.
Among the teams listed via Heavy in their latest rankings, the New York Giants moved up two spots and could be one to watch. They defeated the winless Browns on Sunday 27-13 and get to face a Pittsburgh Steelers team fighting for a playoff spot. The Raiders moved from fourth up to second based on their winning ways, while Seattle went from second to fourth. The Seahawks suffered a 14-5 crushing loss to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on Sunday but are still in the playoff picture. However, the Bucs’ win pushed them into the Top 10.
The Chiefs also vaulted up two spots to take sixth in the rankings, while the team they beat, the Broncos, dropped from fifth to seventh. Denver is now fighting for their playoff lives. Below are the latest power rankings ahead of the week’s slate.
NFL Power Rankings Week 13:
- Dallas Cowboys (10-1)
- New England Patriots (9-2)
- Oakland Raiders (9-2)
- Seattle Seahawks (7-3-1)
- New York Giants (8-3)
- Kansas City Chiefs (8-3)
- Denver Broncos (7-4)
- Miami Dolphins (7-4)
- Atlanta Falcons (7-4)
- Tampa Bay Buccaneers (6-5)
In terms of how the postseason is shaping up, the clear contenders are there but some surprises may be emerging. The Cowboys, Patriots, and Raiders seem to have separated themselves from the pack, but there’s still five games left. The Seahawks have the experience factor and the coaching abilities of Pete Carroll. However, some of their losses are questionable, and a tie against the Los Angeles Rams may come back to haunt them in terms of any home-field advantage.
In the AFC, the Patriots are the No. 1 seed, while the Raiders are second, according to Sporting News in their playoff picture. The Baltimore Ravens (6-5) hold first place in the AFC North and are the No. 3 seed, while the Texans (6-5), who have first place in the South, are No. 4. Finishing things out are the No. 5 Chiefs (8-3) and No. 6 Dolphins (7-4). With the loss, the Denver Broncos have fallen to 7-4, which is tied with the Dolphins, and are still fighting for one of those final seeds.
As for the NFC, the Dallas Cowboys (10-1) have lost just once all season, so if the playoffs started today, they’d hold the No. 1 seed in the NFC, giving them home-field advantage through the NFC Playoffs. At No. 2 are the 7-3-1 Seahawks, who have first place in the NFC West. Based on the past week’s action, the Cowboys are in the driver’s seat to lock up the top seed in the NFC, so Dallas fans can start to celebrate the success.
Right behind them are the Detroit Lions (7-4) at No. 3 and Atlanta Falcons (7-4) at No. 4. The New York Giants (8-3) have a wild card spot with the No. 5 seed, as do their division rivals, the Redskins (6-3-1), with a No. 6 seed. Teams that are right behind them include the 6-5 Buccaneers and 6-5 Vikings. However, Minnesota has the task of trying to give Dallas a second loss for the season this coming Thursday.
It should be another interesting week in the NFL, with the upcoming games giving teams more hope or dashing playoff dreams. Which team do you think got an unfair spot in the latest NFL power rankings top 10? Do the Raiders deserve to be in the Patriots’ spot?
[Featured Image by Tom Pennington/Getty Images]