Week 12 of the NFL season put a big spotlight on the two teams at the top of the AFC East, the Patriots and the Bills. These two teams will collide on Monday night. The winner will not only control the AFC East but the number two seed in the AFC. How do these two teams stack up to the rest of the league? Here are the power rankings for Week 12 of the NFL season.
32. Detroit Lions (0-10-1) Prev: 32
Every Thanksgiving, the NFL decides to punish America by having the Lions play in the first game of the day. This week, it was even worse, as the Lions played the Bears without Justin Fields. The Lions ended up losing, and their best chance this year for a win may have just gone out the window. It would be the second time in 12 years the Lions have had a winless season.
Team MVP: Amani Oruwariye (2 tackles, INT)
Next: vs Vikings
31. Houston Texans (2-9) Prev: 30
One week after upsetting the Titans, who are near the top of the AFC, the Texans took a loss to the lowly Jets. It appears as though Houston has come back to Earth after what will likely be the victory of their season. Tyrod Taylor was sacked five times, which is not an ingredient for success.
Team MVP: Kamu Grugier-Hill (7 tackles, sack)
Next: vs Colts
30. Jacksonville Jaguars (2-9) Prev: 29
The Jags had a rare chance of getting a win on Sunday, but the return of Cordarrelle Patterson proved to be too much for the Jags to handle. James Robinson continues to be the lone bright spot in this offense, putting up over 100 scrimmage yards. Jacksonville may as well give it to him 30 times if they want to win another game.
Team MVP: James Robinson (86 yds, 3 rec, 29 yds)
Next: at Rams
29. Seattle Seahawks (3-8) Prev: 26
What a sad state of affairs it is down in Seattle now. What looked like it could be a dynasty now has officially crumbled. This team could not run the ball whatsoever, with Russell Wilson leading the team in rushing with 16 yards. This team is officially broken and could be headed for a breakup as soon as next year.
Team MVP: Russell Wilson (20/31, 247 yds, 2 TDs)
Next: vs 49ers
28. New York Jets (3-8) Prev: 31
Zach Wilson returned this week, and he looked rusty, throwing an interception off the back of one of his teammates. Thankfully for Wilson, his running game and defense had his back, and the Jets were victorious. The Jets currently hold two top-five draft picks with their pick as well as Seattle’s. They will have several areas to improve in with those picks.
Team MVP: John Franklin-Myers (3 tackles, 2 sacks, INT)
Next: vs Eagles
27. New York Giants (4-7) Prev: 28
With the Eagles looking to get into playoff position, the Giants scored the upset. It was an uncharacteristically clean day for Daniel Jones, who had no turnovers. But it was the defense who won the day, forcing 4 Eagles turnovers. Overall, a good day for the Giants, who also got Saquon Barkley back.
Team MVP: Tae Crowder (6 tackles, INT)
Next: at Dolphins
26. Chicago Bears (4-7) Prev: 27
Andy Dalton led the Bears to a Thanksgiving day victory over the Lions. There were rumors all week that Matt Nagy would be fired after the game, but that was not the case, to the dismay of Bears fans. Nonetheless, the Bears will move forward with Nagy still at the helm.
Team MVP: Andy Dalton (24/39, 317 yds, TD, INT)
Next: vs Cardinals
25. Carolina Panthers (5-7) Prev: 21
And now we see why nobody wanted to sign Cam Newton for the first ten weeks of the season. As good as Cam can be, he can also have games like the one he had this week, where he finished with less than 100 yards passing and two interceptions. The Panthers had to pull him in the fourth quarter. More games like this, and Newton can kiss the starting job goodbye next year.
Team MVP: DJ Moore (4 rec, 103 yds)
24. Miami Dolphins (5-7) Prev: 25
Make that four in a row now for the Dolphins. Miami is getting hot, and if things turn out their way, they may have a very slim chance at stealing a playoff spot after an abysmal start to the season. Miami looks like one of those teams you do not want to play right now.
Team MVP: Jaylen Waddle (9 rec, 137 yds, TD)
Next: vs Giants
23. Atlanta Falcons (5-6) Prev: 24
Cordarrrelle Patterson is back, and he brought two touchdowns with him on Sunday. The Falcons now sit at 5-6, which technically puts them in position to make a play for the seventh seed in the NFC. However, they have not shown much to show that they are a playoff team, and that doesn’t look to be changing anytime soon.
Team MVP: Cordarrelle Patterson (108 yds, 2 TDs)
Next: vs Buccaneers
22. Washington Football Team (5-6) Prev: 23
Washington scored a home win over the broken Seattle Seahawks. Believe it or not, Washington currently holds the seventh seed, and is playing some of their best football at the moment. Doing all of this with Chase Young, their best player, on the shelf is very impressive.
Team MVP: Antonio Gibson (111 yds, 7 rec, 35 yds)
Next: at Raiders
21. Minnesota Vikings (5-6) Prev: 20
The Vikings lost to San Francisco in a battle to tighten up their grip on a playoff spot. Minnesota lost this game in the trenches, as they ran for 67 yards, compared to San Francisco, who ran for 208. The Vikings will look to get back in the race next week with a game that could be classified as a gimme.
Team MVP: Adam Thielen (5 rec, 62 yds, 2 TDs)
Next: at Lions
20. Philadelphia Eagles (5-7) Prev: 18
The Eagles were in a great spot to start getting in the Wild Card race, with an easy remaining schedule and a record one game under .500. Jalen Hurts collapsed against the Giants, throwing three interceptions, contributing to an Eagles loss. The Eagles now have a bit more ground to make up to catch their division rival Washington, who currently holds the seventh seed.
Team MVP: Alex Singleton (12 tackles, 3 TFLs)
Next: at Jets
19. Pittsburgh Steelers (5-5-1) Prev: 17
Pittsburgh was outclassed by their division rivals, the Bengals, in a crushing loss. The running game was nonexistent, as Najee Harris only ran the ball eight times. Meanwhile, the Steelers’ defense let Joe Mixon run for 156 yards, a career-high for him.
Team MVP: Minkah Fitzpatrick (8 tackles, INT)
Next: vs Ravens
18. New Orleans Saints (5-6) Prev: 15
The Saints are coming apart at the seams. Trevor Siemian is no longer a serviceable quarterback, and not even Sean Payton’s brilliant schemes can save him. New Orleans seems to be trying a quarterback switch, with Taysom Hill, who to this point in the season has been a gimmick player, taking the snaps with the starters in practice. We’ll see if this lights a spark in the Saints.
Team MVP: Bradley Roby (8 tackles, INT)
Next: vs Cowboys
17. Denver Broncos (6-5) Prev: 22
The Broncos had a rowdy crowd in attendance at Mile High, and they saw their team get a massive win over the Chargers. By all means, this should have been the game that pushed Denver out of the playoff window, but they’re still in it on the back of a talented young defense and their running game.
Team MVP: Javonte Williams (54 yds, TD, 3 rec, 57 yds)
Next: at Chiefs
16. Las Vegas Raiders (6-5) Prev: 16
Vegas went into Jerry World on Thanksgiving and came out with a win. With all that has happened to this point in the Raiders’ season, the fact that they can remain focused on football is very impressive. Kudos to the leadership on this team as they look to make their way into the playoffs.
Team MVP: Hunter Renfrow (8 rec, 134 yds)
Next: vs Washington
15. San Francisco 49ers (6-5) Prev: 19
San Fran got a huge win over Minnesota to put them over .500. It was a classic Kyle Shanahan game, as the Niners ran for over 200 yards. A successful run game will often lead a team to victory, and the 49ers used theirs to put them in prime positioning for one of the NFC’s Wild Card spots.
Team MVP: Elijah Mitchell (133 yds, TD, 5 rec, 35 yds)
Next: at Seahawks
14. Cleveland Browns (6-6) Prev: 14
The Browns picked off Lamar Jackson four times and still managed to lose. The offense did not put the points on the board, despite the defense doing its job. Everybody wants to blame Baker Mayfield, but the team that has been one of the best rushing offenses in the league could only amass 40 rushing yards.
Team MVP: Ronnie Harrison Jr (14 tackles, INT)
13. Los Angeles Chargers (6-5) Prev: 11
The Chargers had the chance to establish themselves in the upper echelon of the AFC, but a loss to the Broncos keeps them in the middle tier. The Chargers are very talented and seemingly well-coached, but they have a habit of playing down to the competition. Next week they have another tough matchup.
Team MVP: Austin Ekeler (31 yds, 6 rec, 68 yds, TD)
Next: at Bengals
12. Indianapolis Colts (6-6) Prev: 10
Jonathan Taylor looked human for the first time in weeks, finishing with 97 scrimmage yards, which is still good, but not up to the standards he has set for himself. Meanwhile, the Colts let Leonard Fournette look like Jonathan Taylor, as he scored four touchdowns. Expect Indy and Taylor to return to their previous form next week.
Team MVP: Jonathan Taylor (83 yds, TD, 4 rec, 14 yds)
Next: at Texans
11. Cincinnati Bengals (7-4) Prev: 13
The Bengals humiliated the Steelers and continue to creep up on the Ravens for the lead in the AFC North. The Bengals continue to prove themselves against tough opponents and are currently in a nice spot in the AFC playoff picture. With how tight the AFC is right now, they’ll need to keep winning to stay relevant.
Team MVP: Joe Mixon (165 yds, 2 TDs)
Next: vs Chargers
10. Tennessee Titans (8-4) Prev: 6
Tennessee went into Foxborough without their all-world running back and their top two wide receivers, and unsurprisingly, they got crushed. They were competitive in the first half, but Belichick figured them out in the second half. Tennessee got a break with the Colts losing, and now they get their bye to get healthier.
Team MVP: Dontrell Hilliard (131 yds, TD)
9. Buffalo Bills (7-4) Prev: 12
Buffalo dominated the Saints on Thanksgiving to keep pace with the Patriots. They now look ahead to Monday, when they get a chance to take back the lead in the AFC East when they host the Patriots. It will be their biggest test to date, and they’ll need to bring this team rather than the one that lost to Jacksonville.
Team MVP: Mario Addison (4 tackles, sack)
Next: vs Patriots
8. Kansas City Chiefs (7-4) Prev: 8
Kansas City had their bye this week. It was poorly timed, as they were just starting to get hot again.
Next: vs Broncos
7. Los Angeles Rams (7-4) Prev: 4
The all-in LA Rams are currently in a freefall, as they are 0-3 since adding Von Miller and 0-2 since adding Odell Beckham. This team is too talented to not make a Super Bowl appearance, and they’ve traded essentially their entire draft to try and win it all this year. This team needs to figure it out.
Team MVP: Odell Beckham Jr (5 rec, 81 yds, TD)
Next: vs Jaguars
6. Dallas Cowboys (7-4) Prev: 3
The Cowboys lost their traditional Thanksgiving game by way of a heartbreaking overtime field goal. Dallas was without their numbers one and two receivers, and Dak Prescott still threw for almost 400 yards. With Washington creeping up, Dallas would like to get healthier sooner rather than later.
Team MVP: Dak Prescott (32/47, 375 yds, 2 TDs)
Next: at Saints
5. New England Patriots (8-4) Prev: 9
The Patriots stayed hot with a big win over the Titans, but now they get their big test. They’ve been playing their best football and now will travel to Buffalo for a game that will likely decide their playoff destiny. It is their biggest game of the season without question, and Bill Belichick will have this team at its best.
Team MVP: Mac Jones (23/32, 310 yds, 2 TDs)
Next: at Bills
4. Baltimore Ravens (8-3) Prev: 7
The Ravens won ugly against the Browns, but it’s a win nonetheless. Baltimore currently sits at the top of the AFC, with an 8-3 record. However, if Lamar Jackson throws four picks again, they shouldn’t expect to win.
Team MVP: Mark Andrews (4 rec, 65 yds, TD)
Next: at Steelers
3. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (8-3) Prev: 5
The Bucs stole one from the Colts, on the back of Leonard Fournette. Fournette scored four touchdowns, pulling a Jonathan Taylor on the team that has Jonathan Taylor. Tampa’s competition in the NFC South has seemingly folded, and the Bucs have a clear path to the division crown.
Team MVP: Leonard Fournette (100 yds, 3 TDs, 7 rec, 31 yds, TD)
Next: at Falcons
2. Green Bay Packers (9-3) Prev: 2
Green Bay knocked off the high-powered Rams, scoring a big in-conference win. Aaron Rodgers, with his injured toe, made the star-studded Rams defense look like fools, starting with Jalen Ramsey, who he completed five passes on, including one for a touchdown. Green Bay looks good heading into December.
Team MVP: Aaron Rodgers (28/45, 307 yds, 2 TDs)
1. Arizona Cardinals (9-2) Prev: 1
Arizona had their bye this week, and remain in the top spot. This was in a great spot for the Cardinals, as it bought them more time to get Kyler Murray and Deandre Hopkins fully healthy.
Next: at Bears