Now that Week 13 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 14. Even more league-wide discussion in this week’s episode of The ODDcast on The SB Nation NFL Show.
BLG’S WEEK 14 NFL POWER RANKINGS
1 - Arizona Cardinals (Last Week: 1) - The Cards comfortably beat a bad Chicago team as Kyler Murray and DeAndre Hopkins returned to the field. They’ll face some tougher tests down the stretch as they try to earn the No. 1 seed in the NFC playoff picture.
2 - Green Bay Packers (LW: 2) - Aaron Rodgers was resting his toe on the Packers’ bye week. Green Bay returns to host Chicago on Sunday Night Football.
3 - Tampa Bay Buccaneers (LW: 3) - The Bucs were sweating it out a little bit in Atlanta before ultimately pulling away late in the third quarter. Chris Godwin saw a whopping 17 targets in this one … and caught 15 of them!
4 - New England Patriots (LW: 4) - Seven straight wins for the team now in possession of the No. 1 seed in the AFC playoff picture. Crazy that the Pats were able to win with Mac Jones only throwing the ball three times. New England was able to ride their ground game and their defense to victory in the frigid Buffalo winds.
5 - Kansas City Chiefs (LW: 5) - This Chiefs season sure has been weird, huh? Earlier in the year, their defense was ABYSMAL. Like, worst in the league. Steve Spagnuolo’s unit has since settled in, allowing just 11.2 points per game in their last five. That’s the good news. The bad news is the offense is looking inconsistent. Can Patrick Mahomes and company find their groove at the right time?
6 - Tennessee Titans (LW: 6) - The bye came at a good time for the Titans given how banged up they are. After two straight losses, Tennessee will look to right the ship as they host the Jags.
7 - Los Angeles Rams (LW: 8) - The Rams were in need of a “get right” game and that’s exactly what they had against Urban Meyer.
8 - Dallas Cowboys (LW: 9) - On the whole, Dak Prescott hasn’t been on his A-game since returning from injury. He has a 87.4 passer rating through his last five games. Dallas needs him to get back on track to instill confidence as serious contenders. They really need him to step up in a big game against Washington this week.
9 - Baltimore Ravens (LW: 7) - John Harbaugh made the right call to go for two and the win. Just needed a better throw from Lamar Jackson. Jackson, by the way, is down a 72.9 passer rating over his last six games. More interceptions (10) than touchdown passes (8). Just doesn’t feel like the Ravens’ year, especially given how injured they are. Losing Marlon Humphrey for the season really doesn’t help matters.
10 - Indianapolis Colts (LW: 12) - Jonathan Taylor should probably be NFL MVP. The Colts aren’t in position to make the playoffs without his record-breaking performances.
11 - Los Angeles Chargers (LW: 13) - You know, Chargers, just when I thought you couldn’t get any dumber, you go and do something like this ... and totally redeem yourselves! Seriously, though, this is the team that pulls you back in just when you’re ready to quit on them. It looked like they were going to blow a big game to Cincy but they stormed back (no pun intended) to secure the victory.
12 - Buffalo Bills (LW: 10) - Missed opportunities proved to be costly in a big game for the Bills. Tough to go only 1/4 in the red zone. Also didn’t help that Buffalo struggled to stop the run when it was the only thing the Pats were trying to do on offense. Sean McDermott also made a number of poor decisions.
13 - Cincinnati Bengals (LW: 11) - The Bengals are on the rise but they’re not fully formed just yet. Still figuring things out. Tough to win when you turn the ball over four times.
14 - Pittsburgh Steelers (LW: 16) - T.J. Watt is a freaking monster. Dude has 16 sacks this season — a new career-high for him — despite only playing 10 games. He should be in the MVP conversation. The Steelers have a losing record without him.
15 - Washington Football Team (LW: 19) - Don’t look now but the Football Team has the longest win streak in the entire NFC! Crazy. They’re not exactly firing on all cylinders; Taylor Heinicke was fortunate to get away with some turnover-worthy throws in Las Vegas. Nevertheless, Washington is in position to make a run at a playoff spot. HUGE NFC East matchup coming up as they host Dallas this weekend.
16 - San Francisco 49ers (LW: 14) - “They can beat anyone and they can lose to anyone.” That’s how my co-host on The ODDcast Rob “Stats” Guerrera, a 49ers fan, described his favorite team. He’s not wrong … except for the Seattle being the one team that San Fran can simply never beat. Russell Wilson owns them.
17 - Cleveland Browns (LW: 17) - Will the bye week rest make a difference for Baker Mayfield? We’ll believe it when we see it. The Browns return to action against the team that just beat them: Baltimore. Home game for Cleveland this time.
18 - Minnesota Vikings (LW: 15) - Kirk Cousins has now lost to Cooper Rush and Jared Goff this season. Are the Vikings’ struggles entirely his fault? No, they’re not. Mike Zimmer deserves a lot of blame; it’s clear Minny needs to move on after the season. But regardless of how he might put up gaudy passing numbers, Cousins is not the guy getting this franchise over the hump. The Vikings suffered the worse hit of any team to their playoff odds in Week 13.
19 - Miami Dolphins (LW: 20) - Tied for the second-longest winning streak in the league with five straight victories. Their chances of making the playoffs aren’t great considering they’re currently the 13th seed in the AFC. But they’re at least trending in the right direction as a franchise (maybe) after starting out 1-7.
20 - Las Vegas Raiders (LW: 18) - The Raiders entered Week 13 with a significant rest advantage. They last played on Thanksgiving while their opponent was coming off a short week. And they still lost. At home. Too inconsistent.
21 - Philadelphia Eagles (LW: 21) - Gardner Minshew did a great job of filling in for Jalen Hurts as the Eagles took advantage of the league’s worst passing defense. There are those who want to ride with Minshew Mania but Hurts will return as the starter if/when he’s healthy. It does’t mean Hurts can’t lose his job if he struggles again like he did in Week 12, however. The Eagles could be keeping a short leash as they try to make a playoff push.
22 - Denver Broncos (LW: 22) - The Broncos had a big opportunity to follow up their win over LAC by going out and upsetting KC. They didn’t capitalize. They’ll likely be on the outside looking in when it comes to the playoffs.
23 - Seattle Seahawks (LW: 27) - Beating the Niners is likely too little, too late for Seattle. They’re currently the No. 15 seed in the NFC. But the win at least gives them a non-zero chance of running the table to make the playoffs. They DO have the league’s fifth-easiest remaining schedule.
24 - New Orleans Saints (LW: 23) - Why can’t Sean Payton see that Taysom Hill isn’t a franchise quarterback? A massive blindspot for a good head coach.
25 - Carolina Panthers (LW: 24) - The Panthers firing Joe Brady is pathetic. Did their offensive coordinator make a panic trade for Sam Darnold? A move that most said was pretty dumb at the time? Did their offensive coordinator decide to re-sign a washed Cam Newton? Nothing more than classic scapegoating here.
26 - New York Giants (LW: 25) - The Giants are bad to begin with but they’re even worse with Mike Glennon under center. Maybe Jake Fromm (State Farm) can give them something? Probably not. But he might offer more upside than Glennon while Daniel Jones is hurt.
27 - Atlanta Falcons (LW: 26) - They have the league’s fourth-worst point differential and yet somehow they have five win. They’ve overachieved and they still suck.
28 - Chicago Bears (LW: 28) - Although he’s wildly overrated and not actually good, Justin Fields at least offers hope and reason to watch the Bears. They’re just entirely pointless when Andy Dalton is playing.
29 - Detroit Lions (LW: 32) - The Lions are no longer winless! (They were technically already winless since a tie is half of a win … but shut up!) Even better, the result didn’t drop them out of the top spot in the 2022 NFL Draft. Hard not to be happy for Lions fans who get to experience some joy, even if it’s just for one week. The win badly damaged a division rival’s playoff chances.
30 - New York Jets (LW: 29) - Zach Wilson had one of his more promising games of the season … in an outing where he only posted an 84.0 passer rating. Not great. Also not great? The Jets defense failing to force a punt until Philly’s first drive of the game. The NY in NYJ actually stands for “(Maybe) Next Year.”
31 - Houston Texans (LW: 30) - The Texans are listless. Their ineptitude might reward them with Kenny Pickett, though.
32 - Jacksonville Jaguars (LW: 32) - The Jags are averaging 10.7 points per game in their last six outings. Brutal. There’s no real reason to give Urban Meyer a second season.