Here’s a look at where each team stands in NESN.com’s NFL power rankings as we head into Week 16. (To see our Week 15 rankings, click here.)
1. New England Patriots (12-2; last week: 1): The Pats look stronger than ever following their 16-3 win over the Broncos.
2. Dallas Cowboys (12-2; 2): Dak Prescott put to rest any Tony Romo rumblings as the Cowboys held off a feisty Bucs team on Monday night.
3. Oakland Raiders (11-3; 4): Oakland righted the ship with a win over San Diego and still has a shot at home-field advantage if New England falters over the final two weeks.
4. New York Giants (10-4; 9): The G-Men likely won’t catch the Cowboys in the NFC East, but it really, really feels like we’re headed for Patriots-Giants III.
5. Seattle Seahawks (9-4-1; 5): Lesson to Jared Goff: When a member of the Legion of Boom is barreling down on you, step out of bounds.
6. Atlanta Falcons (9-5; 7): The Falcons have scored 29 or more points in seven of their last eight games.
7. Kansas City Chiefs (10-4, 3): It’s actually kind of impressive that Andy Reid still doesn’t understand how to use his timeouts.
8. Pittsburgh Steelers (9-5; 6): The Steelers fell into a big hole early before rallying to knock off the Bengals.
9. Green Bay Packers (8-6; 12): Would you want to play this Packers team in the playoffs? Neither would we.
10. Detroit Lions (9-5; 8): There was no fourth-quarter magic Sunday for the Lions, who now lead the Packers by just a game in the NFC North after losing to the Giants.
11. Miami Dolphins (9-5; 13): The Dolphins control their own destiny as they seek their first playoff berth since 2008.
12. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (8-6; 10): Tampa will be a tough out if it’s able to sneak into the postseason.
13. Tennessee Titans (8-6; 16): The Titans’ résumé includes wins over the Chiefs, Broncos, Packers, Lions and Dolphins. They’re easily the most dangerous team in the miserable AFC South.
14. Denver Broncos (8-6; 11): The Broncos’ locker room is coming apart at the seams, and Denver is on track for a postseason no-show just one year after hoisting the Lombardi Trophy.
15. Baltimore Ravens (8-6; 14): Ravens-Steelers on Christmas Day could decide the AFC North.
16. Houston Texans (8-6; 17): Welcome to the Tom Savage show.
17. Indianapolis Colts (7-7; 19): Andrew Luck and the Colts destroyed the Vikings on Sunday, but they still sit in third place in the AFC South.
18. New Orleans Saints (6-8; 21): If you’re a fan of offense (or have Drew Brees on your fantasy team), Saints-Cardinals was the game for you.
19. Washington Redskins (7-6-1; 15): Washington’s playoff hopes look bleak after Monday’s loss to Carolina.
20. Carolina Panthers (6-8; 26): It would take an honest-to-God miracle for the Panthers to make the playoffs, but they’ve been playing some good football of late.
21. Buffalo Bills (7-7; 20): Rex Ryan should start packing his bags if he hasn’t already.
22. Minnesota Vikings (7-7; 18): It’s hard to believe this team began the season 5-0.
Eliminated from playoff contention: Cincinnati Bengals (5-8-1), Arizona Cardinals (5-8-1), San Diego Chargers (5-9), Philadelphia Eagles (5-9), Los Angeles Rams (4-10), New York Jets (4-10), Chicago Bears (3-11), Jacksonville Jaguars (2-12), San Francisco 49ers (1-13), Cleveland Browns (0-14)
Thumbnail photo via Robert Deutsch/USA TODAY Sports Images
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