Get ready for the last of the Undefeateds to fall in Week 11. Since no one knows how to orchestrate a second-half slide towards the Postseason better than Peyton Manning, #18 is just the right person to push the Kansas City Chiefs down the spiraled staircase of mediocrity…
Think of PFPod’s Rankings as the half-breed love-child of traditional “Power Rankings” and the NFL playoff format: from Best to Worst, we rank the 8 Division Leaders and 2 Wild Card Contenders from each conference. Our Top 12 rankings give you all the fun of a college poll AND a meaningful outlook on the NFL playoff picture!
Top 4: Bye-week bound Divisional Leaders
1. Kansas City Chiefs. (9-0). Talk to us next week about the NFL’s version of the Ohio State Buckeyes #Undefeated #Untested #Overrated
3. New Orleans Saints. (7-2). The Saints probably won’t ratchet up another 40 first downs this week, but New Orleans (-3) remain the home favorite over San Francisco. The 49ers offense has been struggling lately, but Jim Harbaugh’s defense goes into this game 2-0 against Drew Brees.
4. New England Patriots. (7-2). Watch for New England’s Monday Night matchup against NFC Wild Card Contender Carolina. We will learn how the two conferences stack up heading into Thanksgiving…
Best of the Rest: NFL Power Rankings 5-12
5. Denver Broncos. (8-1). If the Broncos beat the Chiefs, KC could fall as far as #10 in next week’s Power Rankings.
6. Detroit Lions. (6-3). After completing the season sweep of the Bears, the Lions enjoy a huge leg up on the NFC North title. Now that Green Bay is looking at a 4-6 week gap in coverage while Discount Double-Check is out of commission, Detroit will watch the health of its divisional lead improve heading into December (ironic, considering that 140,000 policyholders in Michigan will watch their existing health insurance policies disappear before New Year’s). #Obamacare
7. Carolina Panthers. (6-3). Carolina’s Top Ten defense kept Colin Kaepernick and the 49ers out of the end zone on Sunday. So long as Cam Newton is getting decent pocket-protection, the Panthers are consistently winning. Put another way, Carolina is 6-1 this season when Newton is sacked 3 times or fewer in a game.
8. Cincinnati Bengals. (6-4). Stunningly, Cincinnati held onto the #8 spot in our Power Rankings. Bengals fans should thank Indy, Chicago, and San Fran for crapping the bed last week. Half the Ravens’ points came off Marvin Lewis’ mistaken decision to go for it on 4th down on Cincy’s first and last drives. Don’t be surprised to hear rumors of Ed Reed talking to the Bengals in the days and weeks ahead.
9. Indianapolis Colts. (6-3). What happened to the Colts last week? Jeff Fisher, that’s who. Air McNair was smiling from above when he saw the Rams using the classic run-heavy offense, coupled with strategically aggressive downfield passing, which his Titans used to run 10 years ago. Look for Indy to bounce back this week– just don’t expect to see the Colts make it past the Wild Card Round.
10. New York Jets. (5-4). The AFC’s sixth best team remains the Jets this week. More Chris Ivory, please: his season-high 139 yards against the Saints seems to have moved him ahead of Bilal Powell on the RB depth chart.
11. Chicago Bears. (5-4). Chicago is a surprise pick in this week’s Power Rankings. The 49ers have a better record, but the Bears have played far more consistently all season long– not one of Chicago’s losses has been by more than a touchdown (plus 2-pt conversion). Head-to-head, we think the 49ers would probably beat the Bears. But these two wild card wannabes won’t be meeting in the NFC Championship Game this year, unless we hitch a ride with Marty McFly to the ’84 NFC Championship Game
12. Dallas Cowboys. (5-5). 49ers fans, don’t be mad at me. Be mad at the NFC East for stealing the playoff spot you deserve.