Now that Week 14 of the 2021 NFL season is in the books, it’s time for everyone’s favorite meaningful exercise: NFL Power Rankings! What differentiates these rankings from others is that they’re the only truly accurate ones in the entire universe. Let’s take a look at how all 32 teams stack up entering Week 15. Even more league-wide discussion in this week’s episode of The ODDcast on The SB Nation NFL Show.
BLG’S WEEK 15 NFL POWER RANKINGS
1 - Green Bay Packers (Last Week: 2) - Aaron Rodgers leads the league with a 108.8 passer rating. Despite his toe injury, he has 10 passing touchdowns and zero interceptions in his last three games. The Packers moved up to the No. 1 seed with Arizona losing on Monday night. Maybe Rodgers is about to make one final championship run with Green Bay after all.
2 - Tampa Bay Buccaneers (LW: 3) - The Bucs almost blew a big lead but, shocker, Tom Brady ultimately came through in the end. He’s truly NFL Thanos. He’s got the jewelry and he’s inevitable.
3 - Arizona Cardinals (LW: 1) - Kyler Murray: very talented, but erratic. He has two touchdown passes to four interceptions in his last three starts. The Cards are 1-2 in those games. Arizona may have blown their shot to get the No. 1 seed, which would’ve been really valuable to have.
4 - New England Patriots (LW: 4) - The Pats return from their bye to play a big game in Indy. We’ll see if they have an answer for Jonathan Taylor.
5 - Kansas City Chiefs (LW: 5) - Six straight wins for the Chiefs. Is the offense truly back? We thought it was when they played Las Vegas the last time but that wasn’t necessarily the case. In any case, the defense seems to be here to stay.
6 - Tennessee Titans (LW: 6) - The Titans returned from their bye to shut out the NFL’s worst team. Fairly straightforward.
7 - Los Angeles Rams (LW: 7) - There was something poetic about Aaron Donald opening the game with the sack and finishing the game with a sack. Donald and Matthew Stafford both came up huge in a very big spot for the Rams. If Arizona slips up, the Rams can pounce for the NFC West lead. Otherwise, they’re in a strong position for the top wild card spot.
8 - Dallas Cowboys (LW: 8) - Micah Parsons starred in a strong showing by the Dallas defense. The Cowboys needed that effort, too, because the offense still isn’t firing on all cylinders. Dak Prescott still doesn’t look right. Can he get back on track before the playoffs begin or is this the Dak we’re going to see for the rest of the season?
9 - Baltimore Ravens (LW: 9) - The Ravens have been so banged up all year long and now Lamar Jackson is hurt. They’re never going to be a team that just lays down and dies but it’s just not looking like their year. Their grip on the AFC North lead is slipping.
10 - Indianapolis Colts (LW: 10) - The Colts return from their bye to host the Pats. Figures to be a good measuring stick game for Indy.
11 - Los Angeles Chargers (LW: 11) - Justin Herbert is just so ridiculous. The Chargers’ inconsistency makes them hard to take to the bank. But the upside is so intriguing. Huge opportunity for the Bolts with a home game against KC on Thursday night. Can the Chargers make the AFC West theirs by sweeping the top dog in the division?
12 - San Francisco 49ers (LW: 16) - We had Sheil Kapadia on this week’s episode of The ODDcast (flex) and, much to the delight of my 49ers fan co-host Rob “Stats” Guerrera, he went with San Fran as his “team that nobody wants to play” in the NFC. As wisely stated by him, Jimmy Garoppolo is hardly a top quarterback on his own merit but the 49ers offense can be a top five unit when he’s under center. George Kittle has been a beast lately and the Niners are in a good spot to get a wild card spot.
13 - Buffalo Bills (LW: 12) - The bad news for the Bills is they’re the seventh seed after going 2-4 in their last six. The good news for the Bills is their road the rest of the way doesn’t look overly difficult: vs. CAR, at NE, vs. ATL, vs. NYJ. Even if they get swept by the Pats this season, they still have a good chance to win three more games. But it’s disappointing for them to be settling for a wild card spot after once having control of the AFC East.
14 - Cleveland Browns (LW: 17) - Though they almost blew it at the end, they ultimately picked up a very big win to stay alive in the AFC playoff picture. Heck, they might be able to win their division. Hard to put a lot of trust in Baker Mayfield but the running game and defense might be able to get them in.
15 - Cincinnati Bengals (LW: 13) - Had Cincy been able to complete the comeback, they would’ve been first in the AFC North. Instead, they dropped to the No. 9 seed with a loss. This is a team that has some positive things going for them. They’re trending in the right direction in the bigger picture. But they’re just not all the way there yet.
16 - Minnesota Vikings (LW: 18) - Mike Zimmer’s job might be riding on whether the Vikings make the playoffs or not. They’re currently on the outside looking in as the No. 8 seed. Their final four games: at CHI, vs. LAR, at GB, vs. CHI. The Chicago games seem winnable, but do they definitely get both? And can they get an upset from one of the other two? Feels like it’s going to be close.
17 - Pittsburgh Steelers (LW: 14) - You have to give Pittsburgh credit for battling back from a big deficit and almost sending their Thursday Night Football game in Minnesota to overtime. But you also have to ding them for taking way too long to get started. Too little, too late. Might be the theme of the season as well.
18 - Washington Football Team (LW: 15) - Washington’s four-game winning streak seemed to be a sign that they were headed in the right direction. Well, that’s no longer the case. The Football Team lost to Dallas and got banged up in the process. Now they’re in jeopardy of falling out of wild card position as they head to Philly this week.
19 - Miami Dolphins (LW: 19) - The Dolphins return from their bye to face NYJ and NO. Real chance for them to get above .500 after starting out 1-7.
20 - Philadelphia Eagles (LW: 21) - The Eagles return from their bye to play four straight NFC East matchups. The stretch starts with a home game against Washington. Jalen Hurts has a big opportunity to prove himself and lead the Birds to the playoffs. Will he deliver?
21 - Denver Broncos (LW: 22) - RIP Demaryius Thomas. It’s hard to take the Broncos seriously as a huge playoff threat but they’re still in the hunt for a wild card spot. Four really big games coming up to end the year: vs. CIN, at LV, at LAC, vs. KC. Make or break time.
22 - Seattle Seahawks (LW: 23) - Seattle’s season is on life support but they’re not dead and buried just yet. If they can pull off a big upset over LAR, they get Chicago and Detroit after that. Russell Wilson might be able to end the season on a higher note than expected when things were looking real awful.
23 - Las Vegas Raiders (LW: 20) - Hard not to wonder what this Raiders season could’ve been if it the Jon Gruden and Henry Ruggs III situations didn’t arise. A lost year for a team that might’ve been able to at least make the postseason. The Raiders should be giving Doug Pederson a call.
24 - New Orleans Saints (LW: 24) - The Saints are still hanging on in the NFC playoff picture. Their quarterback situation leaves a lot to be desired but they have some winnable games down the stretch. Not impossible that they could end up with a wild card spot. Alvin Kamara getting healthy is a big deal for them.
25 - Atlanta Falcons (LW: 27) - The Falcons have to be one of the worst teams to ever win six games. They entered Week 14 dead last in DVOA and fifth-to-last in point differential.
26 - Carolina Panthers (LW: 25) - Carolina’s 3-0 start sure feels like forever ago. This team is 2-8 in their last 10 games. They’re going nowhere fast until they find some kind of real option at quarterback. The combination of Cam Newton and P.J. Walker isn’t scaring anybody. Cam is done and Walker is a fringe NFL talent.
27 - New York Giants (LW: 26) - The G-Men are looking listless right now. Joe Judge’s job is reportedly safe … but, why? What can one point to with the Giants to suggest they’re headed in the right direction? Seems like the only thing saving Judge’s job is that the Giants simply don’t want to fire another head coach. That’s not good reasoning to keep someone.
28 - Chicago Bears (LW: 28) - If the season ended today, the Bears would own the No. 5 pick. Just kidding. They’re sending that selection to NYG. Lots of work to be done in Chicago. One would figure Matt Nagy is going to get the boot … but will Ryan Pace join him?
29 - Detroit Lions (LW: 29) - The Lions’ final four games: vs. AZ, at ATL, at SEA, vs. GB. Unless Green Bay rests their starters, decent chance the Lions lose out and secure the No. 1 pick.
30 - New York Jets (LW: 30) - The Jets are the youngest team in the league but it’s hard to say there’s a lot of hope for them. Zach Wilson isn’t showing much promise. The rookie quarterback has a 65.3 passer rating.
31 - Houston Texans (LW: 31) - Huge game coming up this weekend with Houston and Jacksonville playing each other. The loser is the real winner because they’ll get the No. 2 spot in the 2022 NFL Draft order. The Texans won in Week 1. Can they find a way to tank this game?
32 - Jacksonville Jaguars (LW: 32) - How has Urban Meyer not been fired yet? Just take the L and move on already, Shad Khan. The Jags are averaging just 9.1 points scored in their last seven games. They’re pathetic and showing no signs of promise.