2008 Week 14 NFL Power Rankings
(Dated: December 2 - 7, 2008)
1. New York Giants (11-1) – The New York Giants picked up their 11th win of the season on Sunday, a decisive 23-7 win over the Washington Redskins. The win moved the Giants to three games up on the Dallas Cowboys in the NFC East with just four games to place. New York remains at # 1 in the NFL power rankings for the second straight week. The defending Super Bowl Champions received 305 passing yards from quarterback Eli Manning. Despite all the off the field Plexico Burress drama (shooting himself accidentally), the Giants led 13-7 at halftime, and continued to roll in the second half. Brandon Jacobs led the ground attack with 71 rushing yards and a touchdown. New York can clinch at least a share of the NFC title with a win Sunday at home against the Philadelphia Eagles. The following week the Giants will travel to Texas Stadium to face the Cowboys, before hosting Carolina and traveling to Minnesota to complete the season.
2. Tennessee Titans (11-1) – The Tennessee Titans won their 11th game of the season on Thanksgiving Day; a 47-10 blowout win over the winless Detroit Lions. The win for Tennessee keeps them at # 2 in the NFL Power Rankings. Tennessee scored 35 first half points, and cruised to victory. The Titans were led offensively by running backs Chris Johnson and LenDale White. Johnson carried the ball 16 times for 125 yards and two touchdowns, while White carried it 23 times for 106 yards and two touchdowns. The Titans on the year have outscored opponents 304-175. The Titans can wrap up at least a share of the AFC South title with a win on Sunday over the Cleveland Browns. After the Browns game, the Titans will take on Houston, Pittsburgh and Indianapolis in the remaining games.
3. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (9-3) – The Tampa Bay Buccaneers picked off Drew Brees twice on Sunday and came away with a 23-20 win over the Saints. The win for Tampa Bay was their ninth of the season and keeps them in a two-way tie atop the NFC South. The Buccaneers are now 6-0 at home and 3-3 on the road. Tampa Bay has scored 280 points in 12 games, and allowed 200. Quarterback Jeff Garcia has led the Buccaneers completing 182 of 271 yards for 1908 yards and 8 touchdowns. The win for Tampa Bay moved the Buccaneers up from # 4 to # 3. The Buccaneers will play two straight road games, both against NFC South teams, as they play Carolina on Monday Night Football, and then six days later will travel to Atlanta. Tampa Bay will host San Diego and Oakland in the final two games of the season.
4. Pittsburgh Steelers (9-3) – The Pittsburgh Steelers caused New England to turn the ball over five times in the second half en route to a 33-10 win. After a 10-10 halftime score the Steelers blitzed New England for 23-second half points to win. The win for Pittsburgh moved them up one spot from # 5 to # 4. Fast Willie Parker ran for 87 yards and quarterback Ben Roethlisberger threw for 179 in the win. The Steelers sit one game ahead of Baltimore in the AFC North. Pittsburgh will host Dallas on Sunday before two straight road games at Baltimore and Tennessee, before finishing the season at home with the Bengals.
5. Carolina Panthers (9-3) – The Carolina Panthers kept pace with Tampa Bay on Sunday coming up with a huge 35-31 road win in Green Bay. The Panthers trailed with under two minutes to go, before Steve Smith caught his third ball inside the two yard line to set up a touchdown run by DeAngelo Williams. That run was Williams fourth of the game. On the year, Williams has run for 11 touchdowns on 955 rushing yards. Jake Delhomme, the Carolina quarterback has completed 190 of 329 passes for 2427 yards and 12 touchdowns. On the year Carolina has outscored opponents 285 – 231. The win moved the Panthers up one spot from # 6 to # 5 in the power rankings. The Panthers will play a Monday Night game against the co-leaders in the division Tampa Bay. Carolina will then play their final home game against Denver before heading to New York Giants and Denver in the final two games of the season.
6. Indianapolis Colts (8-4) – The Indianapolis Colts picked up a win on Sunday without an offensive touchdown. With the game tied at 6-6 in the fourth quarter defensive end Robert Mathis picked up a Derek Anderson fumble, and ran it back for a touchdown to give the Colts a 13-6 lead, a score that would hold true in the end. Peyton Manning was held to just 125 yards and no touchdowns on two interceptions. Joseph Addai carried the ball 15 times for 57 yards in the game. The win moved the Colts up one spot from # 7 to # 6. The win for Indianapolis was their 8th of the year, and puts them in good position for an AFC wildcard berth. The Colts still sit three full games behind AFC South leader Tennessee. The Colts will play three of their final four games at home, as Sunday they will host Cincinnati, the following week Detroit, before heading to Jacksonville and hosting Tennessee on December 28th.
7. New York Jets (8-4) – After Thomas Jones scampered for two quick touchdowns, the Jets offense was silenced, as the Broncos knocked off the Jets 34-17. Jones ran for 138 yards and two touchdowns in the game. Brett Favre, Jets quarterback threw for 247 yards in the game, but did not throw a touchdown pass. The Jets dropped from # 3 to # 7 in the power rankings. The Jets were fortunate on Sunday as the Patriots and Bills both lost their game, therefore keeping New York one full game ahead of the Patriots and Dolphins, with the Bills being two games back in the AFC East. The Jets will travel to San Francisco on Sunday, then host Buffalo, travel back across the country to Seattle, before hosting Miami on December 28th.
8. Atlanta Falcons (8-4) – The Atlanta Falcons got 207 passing yards from quarterback Matt Ryan, along with 120 rushing yards from Michael Turner and 112 yards receiving from Roddy White, as the Falcons picked up another win; 22-16 over San Diego. The win for Atlanta was their 8th of the season, keeping them just one game back of both Tampa Bay and Carolina atop the NFC South. The win kept the Falcons # 8 in the power rankings, a spot they assumed last week. Atlanta will travel to divisional opponent New Orleans on Sunday, and then host Tampa Bay, travel to Minnesota and host St. Louis to finish the 2008 season.
9. Dallas Cowboys (8-4) – The Dallas Cowboys are coming in winners of three straight games, including a Thanksgiving Day blasting of the Seattle Seahawks. The win keeps Dallas at the # 9 spot. The Cowboys will face a tough test this Sunday as they travel to Pittsburgh to take on the AFC North leading Pittsburgh Steelers. The Cowboys are currently tied with Atlanta for the final wildcard spot in the NFC, but a win in Pittsburgh would definitely put Dallas in a great position heading into the final three games of the year. The Cowboys trail the Giants by three games in the NFC East. Quarterback Tony Romo, who threw for 331 yards in the win over Seattle, has led Dallas. The Cowboys after their trip to Pittsburgh will host the Giants and Ravens in back to back weeks before heading the Philadelphia to face the Eagles.
10. Baltimore Ravens (8-4) – The Baltimore Ravens won their second straight game, and did it in convincing fashion; 34-3 over Cincinnati. The win for the Ravens moved them up from # 13 into the top 10, at # 10. The Ravens held the Bengals offense to just 155 total yards in the win. The Ravens trail Pittsburgh by a game in the AFC North, but currently are tied for the final playoff spot in the AFC playoff chase. The Ravens will play host to the 7-5 Washington Redskins on Sunday. After the Redskins leave town, Baltimore will face Pittsburgh, then travel to Dallas before hosting Jacksonville on the final Sunday of the season.
11. Arizona Cardinals (7-5) – The Arizona Cardinals lost their second straight game on Thursday Night; a 48-20 blowout defeat at the hands of the Philadelphia Eagles. The loss for Arizona dropped them out of the top to, from # 10 to # 11. The Cardinals still lead the NFC West by three full games and need just one win to clinch the title. Arizona will look to pick up that win in one of the next two weeks at home with St. Louis and then Minnesota. On December 21 the Cardinals will travel to New England to take on the Patriots, and then conclude the year with Seattle on December 28th.
12. New England Patriots (7-5) – The New England Patriots turned the ball over five times in the second half on Sunday. In the National Football League, turning the ball over five times, especially in one half, and most definitely against Pittsburgh is a recipe for disaster. The Patriots fell one spot from # 11 to # 12. New England now sits behind the eight ball for a playoff spot, as they sit a game behind Baltimore and Indianapolis for the final spot. The Patriots remaining schedule seems to soften some, but they will have to be road warriors to get in. On Sunday the Patriots will play in Seattle, with the following week in Oakland. The Patriots will then come home and host Arizona before traveling to Buffalo in the final week of the season.
13. Minnesota Vikings (7-5) – The Minnesota Vikings picked a huge Sunday Night win, 34-14 over Chicago to claim the lead in the NFC North. The win for Minnesota also moved them up three positions from # 16 to # 13. The Vikings in the win got a 99 yard touchdown catch from Bernard Berrian, and 131 rushing yards from Adrian Peterson. The win for Minnesota was their second in a row and fourth in last five games. The Vikings started the season 0-2, and then 1-3. The win for Minnesota also erased a 48-41 defeat at the hands of the Bears back in mid October. The Vikings now will travel to Detroit and Arizona in back to back weeks, before coming home to host Atlanta and the Giants.
14. Washington Redskins (7-5) – The Washington Redskins fell to 7-5 on Sunday. In the 23-7 loss to NFC East leading, and defending NFL Champion New York, the Washington offense only picked up 92 rushing yards. Without top rusher Clinton Portis, who left the game with an injury, the ‘Skins had an even tougher time getting on the board. The Redskins move down from # 12 to # 14. Washington trails in the run for the final playoff spot by one full game. Washington will play three of their final four on the road, starting Sunday at Baltimore. A trip to Cincinnati, then home to face Philadelphia, with a road trip to San Francisco to finish the season will conclude the ‘Skins season.
15. New Orleans Saints (6-6) – The New Orleans Saints cannot seem to find any consistency during the 2008 season. After a 51-29 thrashing of Green Bay, the Saints took one on the chin to divisional leader Tampa Bay 23-20 Sunday. The loss for New Orleans sent them to 6-6 on the year, two games back of a playoff spot. New Orleans dropped a spot in the power rankings with the loss as well. In the final four games for the Saints they will host Atlanta, travel to Chicago and Detroit, and then host the Panthers.
16. Miami Dolphins (7-5) – The Dolphins kept their playoff hopes alive with a win over St. Louis on Sunday. Miami’s win, combined with a Jets, Patriots and Bills loss moved them to within a game of the lead in the division. The Dolphins and Patriots trail the Jets by a game, and lead the Bills by a game in the AFC East. In the 16-12 win over the Rams, the Dolphins defense kept St. Louis out of the end zone, and the offense got in one time, which was enough for the win. The win moved Miami up from # 17 to # 16. Despite the winning record, Miami is getting outscored 257 – 253 on the year. Miami will travel to division opponent Buffalo on Sunday before playing their home finale with San Francisco. The last two games of the year for the Dolphins will be at Kansas City and the Jets.
17. Denver Broncos (7-5) – The Denver Broncos picked up a win on the road Sunday, to go three games up in the AFC West with four games left. A week after getting embarrassed by Oakland, the Broncos scored 27 first half points to knock off the AFC East leading Jets. The win for Denver led them to move up four spots from # 21 to # 17. The Broncos can clinch at least a share of the division title on Sunday when they host the Kansas City Chiefs. After the Chiefs leave town, Denver will head to Carolina, then host Buffalo, before finishing the year at San Diego on December 28th.
18. Philadelphia Eagles (6-5-1) – The Philadelphia Eagles picked up a much needed win on Thanksgiving Night over the Arizona Cardinals. In the 48-20 win, Donovan McNabb threw for 260 yards, and running back Brian Westbrook scored four touchdowns. The win for Philadelphia moved them up from # 20 to # 18. Philadelphia now sits at 6-5-1 on the year. The Eagles are outscoring opponents 319-249 on the season, and are 4-2 at home, while 2-3 in road games. The Eagles feel they can still make a late run and slide into the NFC playoffs. The run will have to continue Sunday at defending champion New York Giants. After the Giants game, the Eagles will host Cleveland, travel to Washington, and then host Dallas.
19. Chicago Bears (6-6) – The Bears lost a chance to take over complete control of the NFC North on Sunday Night. Getting on the board early, behind Devin Hester, Chicago allowed the Vikings to score the final 17 points of the half, including a 99 yard pass to Bernard Berrian. The Vikings went on to beat the Bears 34-17 and take a one game lead in the division. The Bears are now 6-6 overall, 3-4 on the road, 3-2 at home. The loss for Chicago dropped them down four spots from # 15 to # 19. Chicago will play in three straight home games, starting Sunday with Jacksonville, followed by New Orleans and Green Bay. The final game of the season will be December 28th at Houston.
20. Buffalo Bills (6-6) – The Buffalo Bills are another team that had a great opportunity to make up some ground. With the Jets and Patriots both losing, the Bills could have moved to a game back and a three way tie for second place in the AFC East. Instead, the Bills could only put three points on the board, and walked away from home; a 10-3 loser to the 4-8 49ers. The loss sent the Bills to 6-6 overall, and remain two games back of the divisional leader Jets. The Bills also fell two spots in the power rankings from # 18 to # 20. Buffalo will host Miami on Sunday before taking the road to the Jets and Broncos, before finishing the season at home with New England.
21. Green Bay Packers (5-7) – The Green Bay Packers fell two spots from # 19 to # 21, and more importantly fell two games back in the NFC North. Leading late in the game, Green Bay allowed a late touchdown, and fell 35-31 to the Carolina Panthers at home. The loss for Green Bay was their third loss at home this season. The Packers trail Chicago by a full game and Minnesota by two full games. Green Bay will look to get back on track this week when they host the Houston Texans, also 5-7. The Packers final three games will be at Jacksonville, Chicago and at home against Detroit.
22. Houston Texans (5-7) – The Houston Texans are slowly approaching the .500 mark on the season. The Texans were victorious in their first ever Monday Night Football appearance. The Texans knocked off divisional foe Jacksonville for the second time on the year 30-17. The Texans are now 5-7 but three games back of a playoff spot in the AFC. The win for Houston led them to move up one spot in the rankings from # 23 to # 22. The Texans will play at Green Bay on Sunday, before hosting Tennessee on December 14th, playing at Oakland on the 21 and then hosting the Chicago Bears on December 28th.
23. San Diego Chargers (4-8) – The San Diego Chargers were 22-16 losers at the hands of the Atlanta Falcons on Sunday. The loss dropped the Chargers from # 22 to # 23. San Diego on the season is now 4-8 and in danger of missing the playoffs. The Chargers are three full games behind Denver in the AFC West. The Chargers, despite their record have outscored opponents 290-274 led by quarterback Phillip Rivers and running back LaDainian Tomlinson. The Chargers will host Oakland on Thursday night, and then head on the road to Kansas City and Tampa Bay in back to back weeks before hosting Denver on the final Sunday of the season. The Chargers hope to win out and see Denver lose their final four games to claim an AFC East title.
24. San Francisco 49ers (4-8) – The 49ers became the first west coast team to head to the east coast and pick up a win. San Francisco in the meantime may have essentially knocked Buffalo out of any possible playoff opportunity. The 49ers came away with a 10-3 win, not allowing the Bills in the end zone. The lone touchdown was an Issac Bruce 27 yard touchdown catch, in the first quarter. The win for San Francisco was their fourth on the year, putting them three games behind Arizona atop the NFC West, but placing them two games ahead of both St. Louis and Seattle. The win for San Francisco moves them up three spots from # 27 to # 24. The 49ers will host the New York Jets on Sunday, before traveling to Miami and St. Louis in back to back weeks, before finishing the regular season on December 28th at home against Washington.
25. Jacksonville Jaguars (4-8) – The Jacksonville Jaguars cannot wait for this nightmare of a season to come to an end. Losing their eighth game of the season on Monday Night, the Jaguars were the first ever victim of the Texans on Monday Night Football. The loss also sends Jacksonville down from # 24 to # 25. Jacksonville in the loss, turned the ball over three times, and only could pick up one touchdown, a four yard run by Fred Taylor. The Jaguars are now 4-8, four games back of second place Indianapolis. Jacksonville will finish the season at Chicago (Sunday), with Green Bay, Indianapolis, and then on the road at Baltimore.
26. Cleveland Browns (4-8) – The Cleveland Browns offensive struggles continued on Sunday, as they fell in a 13-6 decision to Indianapolis. With the game tied at 6-6 in the fourth quarter, quarterback Derek Anderson fumbled, and Robert Mathis recovered it for a touchdown to give the Colts the only touchdown of the game. Cleveland, in the loss fell one position to # 26. The Browns are now 4-8, and five games behind divisional leader Pittsburgh and four behind Baltimore, who sits in second place. The Browns have scored just 213 points on the year, while allowing 247. Cleveland plays three of their final four games on the road, starting with a game Sunday at Tennessee, and then travel to Philadelphia for a Monday Night Football game. Cleveland will then host Cincinnati, and finish the season at Pittsburgh on December 28th.
27. Kansas City Chiefs (2-10) – The Kansas City Chiefs picked up a win over divisional rival Oakland on Sunday, 20-13. The win moved Kansas City up three spots, ahead of Oakland, Cincinnati and Seattle. In the win, running back Larry Johnson ran for 92 yards and a touchdown, while the defense picked up a 67 yard fumble recovery for a touchdown. Kansas City is now 2-10, trailing Oakland by a full game in the AFC West. The Chiefs will play at Denver on Sunday, then host San Diego and Miami before finishing the season at Cincinnati on December 28th.
28. Oakland Raiders (3-9) – A week after upsetting Denver, and looking good in doing it, the Oakland Raiders laid an egg against divisional rival Kansas City on Sunday. The Raiders were knocked off 20-13 in an ugly offensive game. The loss for the Raiders dropped them two spots from # 26 to # 28. Oakland on the year is now 3-9 and sit just a game ahead of Kansas City for last place, while trailing San Diego by a game for second place. The entire AFC West is the second worst in all of football, ahead of the NFC West. The division has an overall record of 16-32. Oakland will travel to San Diego for a Thursday night game, and then host New England and Houston in back to back weeks before the season finale at Tampa Bay.
29. Cincinnati Bengals (1-10-1) – The Cincinnati Bengals offense could not get started on Sunday against the vaunted Baltimore defense. Cincinnati was only able to manage 3 points in the 38-3 loss. The loss was the tenth of the season for the Bengals, along with a win and a tie. Cincinnati moved down one spot, as Kansas City jumped them, causing them to fall from # 28 to # 29. The Bengals have been outscored on the season 310 – 151. The Bengals are in last place in the AFC North, trailing third place Cleveland by three games. The Bengals will play their final four games at Indianapolis (Sunday), with Washington, at Cleveland, and at home with Kansas City.
30. Seattle Seahawks (2-10) – The Seattle Seahawks did not put on an impressive show on Thanksgiving Day. In a 34-9 rout by the Dallas Cowboys, the Seahawks were only able to manage a field goal a piece in each of the first three quarters. In the loss quarterback Matt Hasslebeck threw for 287 yards and was picked once. Seattle only got 37 yards from their top running back Julius Jones. The loss for Seattle was their tenth of the season, and caused them to fall one position from # 29 to # 30. Seattle will play their final four games against New England (Sunday), St. Louis, New York Jets and Arizona.
31. St. Louis Rams (2-10) – The St. Louis Rams played excellent defense on Sunday, allowing just 16 total points to Miami. The offense was still to be found, scoring just 12. The loss for the Rams was their sixth straight, and tenth on the season. Stephen Jackson, in his return ran for 94 yards, but was unable to get into the end zone. Marc Bulger, in an attempt to give the Rams the lead late in the game was picked off for the third time. On the year St. Louis has been outscored 360 – 159. The loss keeps the Rams at # 31. The Rams will take on Arizona on the road on Sunday, and then host Seattle and San Francisco before ending the year at Atlanta.
32. Detroit Lions (0-12) – Coming into the Thanksgiving Day game against the Tennessee Titans, Lions players and their fans were asking “Can it get any worse?” They got their answer on Thursday as the Titans 47-10 blew out the Lions. Detroit, of course, remains at the # 32 spot in the power rankings. In the loss, the Lions allowed 456 total yards of offense, including 292 via the air. The Lions offense was no better picking up just 23 rushing yards. Detroit is now 0-12, and with four games to play, do not look to be improving. Detroit now is getting outscored 393 – 203 on the season. The Lions will face Minnesota, Indianapolis, New Orleans and Green Bay in their final four games; all teams at or near .500.