NFL POWER RANKINGS

NFL Football Power Rankings

BRIAN BILLICK'S Brian Billick is an acclaimed NFL game analyst for FOX Sports and a Super Bowl-winning coach.

Week 15 Power Rankings


WEEK#    
Posted December 20, 2011 11:39 AM EST

The Packers aren't perfect any longer, but they stay on top of our Power Rankings? I've got a line on who's hot and who's not going into Week 16. Enjoy.
Watch as Brian Billick breaks down the rankings.

+4

Dallas Cowboys

-8

Tennessee Titans

FOX SPORTS NFL POWER RANKINGS

RK Team RECORD CHANGE HIGH/LOW COMMENTS
1

13-1 - 1/1
While I don't buy into the idea that the Packers removed some pressure by losing on Sunday, they now can focus on getting healthy for the playoffs. The recent injuries to linemen Bryan Bulaga and Derek Sherrod may prove more difficult to overcome than loExpand Description
While I don't buy into the idea that the Packers removed some pressure by losing on Sunday, they now can focus on getting healthy for the playoffs. The recent injuries to linemen Bryan Bulaga and Derek Sherrod may prove more difficult to overcome than losing star WR Greg Jennings for the next 2-3 weeks. They still need to clinch home-field advantage, and that will be the sole focus as they host the Bears on Christmas Day. Collapse Description
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2

11-3 - 2/7
The Patriots defense got sliced and diced in the first quarter against the Broncos, but like a good team does, New England made the necessary adjustments and held Denver to just 10 points in the final three. Losing DE Andre Carter will really impact the Expand Description
The Patriots defense got sliced and diced in the first quarter against the Broncos, but like a good team does, New England made the necessary adjustments and held Denver to just 10 points in the final three. Losing DE Andre Carter will really impact the already questionable Patriots' pass rush, but anytime you can score 41 points you are still in pretty good shape. Collapse Description
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3

11-3 1 2/7
The Saints are playing well enough to be at the top of this list. What separates their offense from other explosive offenses like the Packers, Patriots and Lions is that they can actually rely on their running game. When healthy, New Orleans has four baExpand Description
The Saints are playing well enough to be at the top of this list. What separates their offense from other explosive offenses like the Packers, Patriots and Lions is that they can actually rely on their running game. When healthy, New Orleans has four backs that are capable of putting up good numbers, and that will prove beneficial come playoff time. Collapse Description
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4

11-3 3 2/21
In typical 49ers fashion, the offense did just enough and the defense played physical and made the necessary plays to beat the Steelers. The 49ers have yet to give up a rushing touchdown this season, and will get even better when star MLB Patrick Willis Expand Description
In typical 49ers fashion, the offense did just enough and the defense played physical and made the necessary plays to beat the Steelers. The 49ers have yet to give up a rushing touchdown this season, and will get even better when star MLB Patrick Willis returns. Still, they will need RB Frank Gore back to midseason form to go deep in the playoffs. Collapse Description
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5

10-4 2 2/10
Albeit on a cross-country road game, the Ravens showed some real vulnerabilities on Sunday night. The Chargers pretty much had their way offensively and were able to get chunks of yardage both on the ground and through the air. The Ravens defense startsExpand Description
Albeit on a cross-country road game, the Ravens showed some real vulnerabilities on Sunday night. The Chargers pretty much had their way offensively and were able to get chunks of yardage both on the ground and through the air. The Ravens defense starts up front, and if Terrell Suggs and Haloti Ngata can't apply pressure on the opposing QB, they will continue to struggle to stop big plays through the air. Collapse Description
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6

10-4 1 2/9
The Steelers' top priority needs to be the health of Ben Roethlisberger. They are at their best when he can break the pocket and extend plays, and he proved in Monday night's loss that he isn't even close to being able to do that on his injured ankle rigExpand Description
The Steelers' top priority needs to be the health of Ben Roethlisberger. They are at their best when he can break the pocket and extend plays, and he proved in Monday night's loss that he isn't even close to being able to do that on his injured ankle right now. Collapse Description
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7

10-4 1 5/13
T.J. Yates filled in beautifully in his first two weeks, but he struggled mightily on Sunday against the Panthers. But he wasn't the only problem. Sans hospitalized defensive coordinator Wade Phillips, this defense looked lost against Carolina QB Cam NeExpand Description
T.J. Yates filled in beautifully in his first two weeks, but he struggled mightily on Sunday against the Panthers. But he wasn't the only problem. Sans hospitalized defensive coordinator Wade Phillips, this defense looked lost against Carolina QB Cam Newton, and WR Steve Smith wore down Texans CB Jonathan Joseph in man coverage. Houston will be glad to get Phillips back. Collapse Description
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8

9-5 2 5/14
The Falcons played their best offensive game of the year on Thursday night. They have been up and down all season, and now they must begin to string together these types of outings. With a 9-5 record, Atlanta has all but punched its ticket to the playofExpand Description
The Falcons played their best offensive game of the year on Thursday night. They have been up and down all season, and now they must begin to string together these types of outings. With a 9-5 record, Atlanta has all but punched its ticket to the playoffs, but must have a strong showing against New Orleans this weekend to set itself up for the postseason. Collapse Description
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9

9-5 2 4/15
The Lions' inability to run the ball is eventually going to catch up with them, and they must find someone opposite star WR Calvin Johnson in the passing game. I thought it would be TE Brandon Pettigrew, but he seems to have just as many drops as he doesExpand Description
The Lions' inability to run the ball is eventually going to catch up with them, and they must find someone opposite star WR Calvin Johnson in the passing game. I thought it would be TE Brandon Pettigrew, but he seems to have just as many drops as he does big plays. They also need to get healthy in the defensive secondary, or they will struggle against the Packers and Saints in the playoffs. Collapse Description
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10

8-6 2 8/30
Tim Tebow was given a lesson in excellent QB play by none other than Tom Brady on Sunday, but Tebow held up in his own right. The Broncos were able to accumulate 252 yards rushing, but if you fumble the ball three times and give up 41 points on defense, Expand Description
Tim Tebow was given a lesson in excellent QB play by none other than Tom Brady on Sunday, but Tebow held up in his own right. The Broncos were able to accumulate 252 yards rushing, but if you fumble the ball three times and give up 41 points on defense, you aren't going to win too many games. Collapse Description
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11

8-6 4 9/21
QB Tony Romo was an impressive 23 of 30 for 249 yards and three touchdowns on Saturday, and that may become the norm in Dallas for the rest of their season. With a beat-up backfield, the Cowboys will rely on Romo more than ever. He finally has all of hiExpand Description
QB Tony Romo was an impressive 23 of 30 for 249 yards and three touchdowns on Saturday, and that may become the norm in Dallas for the rest of their season. With a beat-up backfield, the Cowboys will rely on Romo more than ever. He finally has all of his weapons on the outside in the game at the same time, and with WR Miles Austin, WR Dez Bryant and TE Jason Witten, they have the ability to put up points by the bucket load. Collapse Description
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12

8-6 3 4/17
Outside of the Giants, there wasn't a more disappointing performance on Sunday than what the Jets displayed. Even more disappointing was the so-called leadership of WR Santonio Holmes. Not only did he fumble a ball returned for a touchdown, but he tippeExpand Description
Outside of the Giants, there wasn't a more disappointing performance on Sunday than what the Jets displayed. Even more disappointing was the so-called leadership of WR Santonio Holmes. Not only did he fumble a ball returned for a touchdown, but he tipped a pass that was eventually intercepted, and then capped it off with a celebration penalty later in the game. Not what you expect out of your captain in the heart of a playoff run. Collapse Description
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13

8-6 1 10/31
It wasn't the blowout we thought it would be, but the Bengals kept their playoff hopes alive on Sunday. Once again, rookie QB Andy Dalton hooked up with his fellow rookie target WR A.J. Green for 115 yards, despite a banged-up shoulder. Green had betterExpand Description
It wasn't the blowout we thought it would be, but the Bengals kept their playoff hopes alive on Sunday. Once again, rookie QB Andy Dalton hooked up with his fellow rookie target WR A.J. Green for 115 yards, despite a banged-up shoulder. Green had better ice it up, because Cincy will need him as the Bengals wrap with the surging Cardinals and physical Ravens. Collapse Description
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14

7-7 2 14/30
Somehow, some way, the Cardinals find a way to get it done. A QB in backup John Skelton that had been written off for Kevin Kolb in the offseason has inspired this team and willed them to victories during the back half of this season. They are playing mExpand Description
Somehow, some way, the Cardinals find a way to get it done. A QB in backup John Skelton that had been written off for Kevin Kolb in the offseason has inspired this team and willed them to victories during the back half of this season. They are playing much better on defense and continue to get big plays out of the return game. While they won't make the playoffs, they are ranked higher and playing better than a couple of teams that will limp their way into the postseason. Collapse Description
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15

7-7 2 15/31
Just like the Cardinals, the Seahawks have been a surprising, late-surging team. On the shoulders of RB Marshawn Lynch and QB Tarvaris Jackson, this offense has found its rhythm. The true test will be their matchup Saturday against the 49ers as Lynch wiExpand Description
Just like the Cardinals, the Seahawks have been a surprising, late-surging team. On the shoulders of RB Marshawn Lynch and QB Tarvaris Jackson, this offense has found its rhythm. The true test will be their matchup Saturday against the 49ers as Lynch will face a defense that hasn't yet surrendered a rushing touchdown. Collapse Description
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16

7-7 4 2/22
The Chargers are suddenly back in the playoff hunt with losses by both the Broncos and Raiders. San Diego will need help to get in, but is very capable of winning out and applying additional pressure to the AFC West. Philip Rivers is as hot as any QB inExpand Description
The Chargers are suddenly back in the playoff hunt with losses by both the Broncos and Raiders. San Diego will need help to get in, but is very capable of winning out and applying additional pressure to the AFC West. Philip Rivers is as hot as any QB in the NFL right now, and the Chargers will be a tough out if they do find themselves in postseason play. Collapse Description
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17

6-8 4 6/23
Stay with me here . . . if the Eagles win out (including their head-to-head with Dallas on Saturday), the Giants lose to the Jets, and then the Giants beat the Cowboys in Week 17, then all three teams will finish with an 8-8 record. IF that happens, the Expand Description
Stay with me here . . . if the Eagles win out (including their head-to-head with Dallas on Saturday), the Giants lose to the Jets, and then the Giants beat the Cowboys in Week 17, then all three teams will finish with an 8-8 record. IF that happens, the Eagles win the division and will get the No. 4 seed in the NFC playoff picture. Wow! Collapse Description
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18

7-7 6 5/19
I said last week that the Giants were mentally tougher than the Cowboys and that is why they would win the division, but they looked emotionally drained on Sunday. Their season boils down to two games, and it starts by beating the Jets on Saturday. Expand Description
I said last week that the Giants were mentally tougher than the Cowboys and that is why they would win the division, but they looked emotionally drained on Sunday. Their season boils down to two games, and it starts by beating the Jets on Saturday. Collapse Description
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19

7-7 - 10/22
Up by six against the Lions with 2:14 remaining . . . then you let Calvin Johnson get behind double coverage, one of which was middle linebacker Rolando McClain, for a gain of 48 yards. I'm not sure what defense calls for the MLB to run with the best wiExpand Description
Up by six against the Lions with 2:14 remaining . . . then you let Calvin Johnson get behind double coverage, one of which was middle linebacker Rolando McClain, for a gain of 48 yards. I'm not sure what defense calls for the MLB to run with the best wide receiver in the NFL, but it was obviously the wrong choice. Collapse Description
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20

7-7 2 7/22
I don't mean to single out an individual player, but I am not so sure that QB Caleb Hanie could start on an Arena League team. Without Jay Cutler and Matt Forte on offense, this team doesn't stand a chance. The defense has holes at the safety position, Expand Description
I don't mean to single out an individual player, but I am not so sure that QB Caleb Hanie could start on an Arena League team. Without Jay Cutler and Matt Forte on offense, this team doesn't stand a chance. The defense has holes at the safety position, but I like how they rally to the ball and rarely miss a tackle. Still, they won't win another game without at least getting Cutler back. Collapse Description
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21

7-7 8 13/31
I've been the coach that lost to a winless team, and it probably cost me my job. Head coach Mike Munchak is obviously not on the hot seat, and the future looks bright in Tennessee with rookie QB Jake Locker once again playing well late in the game. Expand Description
I've been the coach that lost to a winless team, and it probably cost me my job. Head coach Mike Munchak is obviously not on the hot seat, and the future looks bright in Tennessee with rookie QB Jake Locker once again playing well late in the game. Collapse Description
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22

5-9 1 20/32
What was most impressive about the Panthers' win was how they completely wore down the Texans' defense. Steve Smith had his way with Jonathan Joseph on the outside, and had completely tired him out by game's end. The Panthers have shown fight all year lExpand Description
What was most impressive about the Panthers' win was how they completely wore down the Texans' defense. Steve Smith had his way with Jonathan Joseph on the outside, and had completely tired him out by game's end. The Panthers have shown fight all year long, and Cam Newton has proven to be a lot better leader than I pegged him for. Collapse Description
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23

5-9 1 10/28
Rex Grossman looked like, well, Rex Grossman early in the game on Sunday. But even after throwing two interceptions in the first three possessions, the Redskins bounced back and throttled the Giants. With that said, I think this win was less about what Expand Description
Rex Grossman looked like, well, Rex Grossman early in the game on Sunday. But even after throwing two interceptions in the first three possessions, the Redskins bounced back and throttled the Giants. With that said, I think this win was less about what the Redskins did and more about how awful the Giants played. Collapse Description
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24

5-9 - 20/32
I thought losing star OT Jake Long would have a bigger impact on this offense, but instead, they were able to tally 448 yards of total offense -- including 254 yards on the ground. Reminiscent of his college years, RB Reggie Bush looked unstoppable as heExpand Description
I thought losing star OT Jake Long would have a bigger impact on this offense, but instead, they were able to tally 448 yards of total offense -- including 254 yards on the ground. Reminiscent of his college years, RB Reggie Bush looked unstoppable as he juked, hurdled and outran defenders all day long. Collapse Description
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25

5-9 - 6/30
After starting 5-2, the Bills have now lost seven in a row. It is a real likelihood that they lose the final two games as the Broncos fight for their playoff lives, and the Patriots attempt to lock up the No. 1 overall seed for the AFC. From 5-2 to 5-11Expand Description
After starting 5-2, the Bills have now lost seven in a row. It is a real likelihood that they lose the final two games as the Broncos fight for their playoff lives, and the Patriots attempt to lock up the No. 1 overall seed for the AFC. From 5-2 to 5-11. Collapse Description
Team: Home | Stats | Fantasy | Schedule | Gear | Tickets
26

6-8 4 17/32
QB Kyle Orton had a career day with a completion percentage of 74 percent, and if retained, it wouldn't surprise me if he beat out Matt Cassel for the starting job next season. The Chiefs' offense was their best defense on Sunday, by retaining possessionExpand Description
QB Kyle Orton had a career day with a completion percentage of 74 percent, and if retained, it wouldn't surprise me if he beat out Matt Cassel for the starting job next season. The Chiefs' offense was their best defense on Sunday, by retaining possession for 13 more minutes than the Packers, they were able to keep Aaron Rodgers on the sideline and out of the end zone. Collapse Description
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27

4-10 - 18/31
Backup QB Seneca Wallace actually played well filling in for the injured Colt McCoy. Well enough to wonder why he didn't get a shot earlier in the season, but the Browns needed to see what they had in the McCoy. In my opinion, they still haven't found aExpand Description
Backup QB Seneca Wallace actually played well filling in for the injured Colt McCoy. Well enough to wonder why he didn't get a shot earlier in the season, but the Browns needed to see what they had in the McCoy. In my opinion, they still haven't found a franchise QB for the future, and need to make that a priority in the offseason. Collapse Description
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28

2-12 - 22/32
It's never a good thing when your second-string running back leads your team in receptions, receiving yardage and touchdowns in a game.
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29

4-10 3 26/31
After scoring a season-high 41 points against the Bucs in the previous week, the Jags found themselves with a 41-point deficit against the Falcons on Thursday night. MJD still rushed for 100+ yards, and once again, he was the only real positive on a team Expand Description
After scoring a season-high 41 points against the Bucs in the previous week, the Jags found themselves with a 41-point deficit against the Falcons on Thursday night. MJD still rushed for 100+ yards, and once again, he was the only real positive on a team that has multiple holes. Collapse Description
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30

4-10 1 8/30
The Cowboys were already leading by 28 points before the Bucs were able to get on the scoreboard. Josh Freeman was the team's leading rusher with 37 yards and that is never a good sign.
Team: Home | Stats | Fantasy | Schedule | Gear | Tickets
31

2-12 - 24/31
They hung with the Bengals longer than I thought, but this just isn't a very talented team.
Team: Home | Stats | Fantasy | Schedule | Gear | Tickets
32

1-13 - 13/32
People ask me all the time if teams ever intentionally ever try to lose to secure the first pick of the draft. No, as evidenced by the Colts on Sunday.
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NFC STANDINGS

East Division 

TEAM W L T
Cowboys    12 4 0
Eagles    10 6 0
Giants    6 10 0
Redskins    4 12 0
 

West Division 

TEAM W L T
Seahawks    12 4 0
Cardinals    11 5 0
49ers    8 8 0
Rams    6 10 0
 

North Division 

TEAM W L T
Packers    12 4 0
Lions    11 5 0
Vikings    7 9 0
Bears    5 11 0
 

South Division 

TEAM W L T
Panthers    7 8 1
Saints    7 9 0
Falcons    6 10 0
Buccaneers    2 14 0
 

AFC STANDINGS

East Division 

TEAM W L T
Patriots    12 4 0
Bills    9 7 0
Dolphins    8 8 0
Jets    4 12 0
 

West Division 

TEAM W L T
Broncos    12 4 0
Chiefs    9 7 0
Chargers    9 7 0
Raiders    3 13 0
 

North Division 

TEAM W L T
Steelers    11 5 0
Bengals    10 5 1
Ravens    10 6 0
Browns    7 9 0
 

South Division 

TEAM W L T
Colts    11 5 0
Texans    9 7 0
Jaguars    3 13 0
Titans    2 14 0