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NFL Power Rankings (Week 16): Lots Of Movement In The Top Ten

The top three teams in the league are the Seahawks, Broncos, and Chiefs - in that order.

Matt Kartozian-US PRESSWIRE

Every single team in the 10 moved in the power rankings this week. No change at the bottom, where the Redskins and Texans remain locked in a race for the top draft pick. Oh wait, the Redskins don't have a first-round pick this year ...

RANK TEAM W/L Power_rankings_logo_medium MOVE (LW)
Sea_medium 12-2 The Seahawks headlines may be about Russell Wilson and Marshawn Lynch, but it's the defense that is winning all the games for the Seahawks. This is easily the deepest, most talented defense in the league right now, and it will carry the Seahawks back to New York in February. (OCC) Gn-arrow-up_medium (1)
2 Den_medium 11-3 On a rare day when the Broncos offense stalled, the defense was unable to rise to the occasion. We don't talk about this much, because it doesn't fit the Peyton-Manning-As-Savior-Of-Western-Civilization storyline, but the Broncos defense ranks 24th in the league in points allowed. That defense remains a non-issue as long as the offense keeps producing, but as we get deeper into the season, that may not always be the case anymore. (OCC) Rd-arrow-down_medium (2)
Kc_medium 11-3 Jamaal Charles is something special. Five TDs, 195 receiving yards, 20 rushing yards. That and a whopping seven takeaways explain the 50-burger the Chiefs dumped on the hapless Raiders. (OCC) Gn-arrow-up_medium (5)
Car_medium 10-4 The Panthers remain the best team nobody is talking about. (OCC) Gn-arrow-up_medium (8)
Sf_medium 10-4 Everybody's talking about the Seattle defense, but after a rough start to the season, the 49ers have allowed only 144 points over their last 11 games, best in the league ahead of the Panthers (172) and Seahawks (178). (OCC) Gn-arrow-up_medium (6)
6 No_medium 10-4 All four of the Saints' losses have come on the road. They travel to Carolina next week, and if they lose there, they'll make the playoffs on a wildcard - which means a road game and an early exit in the wildcard round. (OCC) Rd-arrow-down_medium (3)
7 Ne_medium 10-4 The Patriots lost in Miami, but you can't help but marvel at the production Tom Brady is squeezing out of the teammates he's got: 5-10 Julian Edelman and 5-11 Danny Amendola combined for 23 catches and 270 receiving yards. Imagine what he could do with some taller receivers. (OCC) Rd-arrow-down_medium (4)
8 Cin_medium 9-5 All five Bengals losses have come on the road. They were playing for the second seed in the AFC playoff picture, but they can now forget about homefield advantage after allowing 21 Steelers points in the first quarter en route to a 30-20 loss in Pittsburgh. (OCC) Rd-arrow-down_medium (7)
Ari_medium 9-5 In a weird playoff picture, the Cardinals have the fifth best record in the NFC, but don't even have a wildcard spot to show for it. (OCC) Gn-arrow-up_medium (10)
10 Ind_medium 9-5 How the Colts are division winners is a source of great bafflement. Before pulling off a win at home against the worst team in the league, Indy lost three times over the last six games by at least two touchdowns. They have been alternating wins and losses since week nine, and will look to continue that bumpy ride as they head to Kansas City next week. (OCC) Gn-arrow-up_medium (11)
11 Chi_medium 8-6 The Bears scored 21 unanswered points in the fourth quarter in a come-from-behind victory over the lowly Browns, but they got Jay Cutler back and he looked good after knocking off some rust early on. (OCC) Gn-arrow-up_medium (13)
12 Phi_medium 8-6 The Eagles may be one of the best teams in the league from the 20 to the 20, but once inside the red zone, they look lost. On Sunday, they were 2-of-5 in the red zone, the Vikings were 5-of-6. That's the game in a nutshell. (OCC) Rd-arrow-down_medium (9)
13 Mia_medium 8-6 The Fish won their Super Bowl as they snapped a streak of seven consecutive losses to the Patriots. (OCC) Gn-arrow-up_medium (15)
Bal_medium 8-6 The Ravens won on a 61-yard field goal yesterday, and while that is quite impressive, their overall play is not. In their last nine games, the offense has been held to below 20 points five times, and they've scored more than 22 points just once. (OCC) Rd-arrow-down_medium (12)
15 Sd_medium 7-7 The Chargers nickled the Broncos into submission in a 27-20 game that looks a lot closer than it actually was, as they held the NFL's top-ranked offense to season lows of 20 points and 295 yards. (OCC) Gn-arrow-up_medium (17)
Gb_medium 7-6-1 After a first half smackdown at the hands of the Dallas Cowboys, the Pack looked around for something, anything that would allow them to cling to life. They found it in the form of a giant blue sieve commonly referred to as the Dallas defense. (D-Mac) Gn-arrow-up_medium (18)
17 Det_medium 7-7 The Lions are coming apart at the seams. They have committed at least three turnovers in five consecutive games; the only team with a longer streak this season is the Giants (Week 1-6). Not surprisingly, the Lions are 1-4 over that stretch. (OCC) Rd-arrow-down_medium (14)
18 Dal_medium 7-7 Throughout the season, the Cowboys have shown that they can overcome injuries, lack of depth, a questionable scheme, and lack of production by their star players often enough to at least stay in the hunt for a division title. But when you add inept coaching to the mix, it's just too much. (OCC) Rd-arrow-down_medium (16)
19 Pit_medium 6-8 After watching Pittsburgh on Sunday night, the fans in the Steel City have to be asking themselves what might have been if they had not started off with a string of losses. (D-Mac) Gn-arrow-up_medium (20)
Stl_medium 6-8 Someone break up the Rams. A Top 5 pick is on its way thanks to the hideous Redskins seasons, and they'll still get their own in the middle of the round. This team is a lot better than they looked against Dallas earlier in the year, and may have found a stud in Vanderbilt RB Zac Stacy. Are they a QB away? Is there one for them this year? (KD) Gn-arrow-up_medium (21)
21 Nyj_medium 6-8 The Jets were officially eliminated from playoff contention when the Ravens won yesterday. For a team that ranks 29th in points differential, delaying the inevitable this long is actually quite an achievement. (OCC) Rd-arrow-down_medium (19)
22 Buf_medium 5-9 Dude, it's Week 16 and it's the Bills. No one cares what goes here. (KD) Gn-arrow-up_medium (27)
23 Min_medium 4-9-1 Without Adrian Peterson, Minnesota looked to be nothing but cannon fodder for the surging Philadelphia Eagles, yet by the time the smoke had cleared, it was the feathered flock who found themselves plundered and pillaged by the marauding band of Norsemen. (D-Mac) Gn-arrow-up_medium (29)
Ten_medium 5-9 The Titans scored 17 points in the final three minutes of regulation with no timeouts to tie the game against the Cardinals, but lost in OT anyway. Tennessee has now lost its third straight and eighth in 10 games. (OCC) Rd-arrow-down_medium (22)
25 Tb_medium 4-10 People thought was crazy for mocking Mike Glennon to Dallas in the 1st most of last year. Look at him now. Imagine how good he'll be for their new coach, Schiano still needs to be fired. (KD) Rd-arrow-down_medium (23)
26 Cle_medium 4-10 Over the preceding decade the Cleveland Browns finished the season with double digit losses nine times. This past Sunday they made it ten of the past eleven seasons. That is the type of futility that makes Cowboys fans realize that it can, in fact, be worse. (D-Mac) (26)
27 Nyg_medium 5-9 In the year 3013, explorers will stumble upon what used to be Canton, OH and be amazed to discover there was a way for a quarterback who led the league in interceptions three different times and had a career 1.34:1 TD to INT ratio could ever have been considered elite. They will nickname this time in human history the Spin Doctor Wizardry Era. (KD) Rd-arrow-down_medium (24)
28 Oak_medium 4-10 The Raiders entered Sunday with an opportunity to delay their division rival Chiefs attempt to secure a playoff berth; in typical Raider fashion, behind seven turnovers that resulted in five Jamaal Charles touchdowns, Oakland managed to pave the way for Kansas City to clinch. (D-Mac) (28)
29 Atl_medium 4-10 The Monday morning headline in the Atlanta Journal Constitution said it all "Falcons outlast Redskins in Clownfest." Atlanta "improved" to 4-10. (D-Mac) Gn-arrow-up_medium (30)
30 Jac_medium 4-10 The Jaguars' three-game winning streak raised eyebrows across the league, but that's over now. (OCC) Rd-arrow-down_medium (25)
31 Was_medium 3-11 A season that began with questions about the possibility of high-priced quarterback RGIII missing the first few games due to injury will end with high-priced QB RGIII being benched for a lack of performance. Along with burying the memories of the 2013 season, Redskins fans will also lay to rest Mike Shanahan's tenure in the nation's capitol (D-Mac) (31)
32 Hou_medium 2-12 If there is any consolation for Dallas fans this season, it is the fact that we will not spend the next several months listening to the snide comments being made by the cross-state fans. If it were not for incurring the wrath of OCC, I would have a hard time resisting the urge to rank the Texans #33, they've earned it. (D-Mac) (32)

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