Strike 7 Elite: NFL Power Rankings 1-10
1. Chiefs (9-2)
After coming off another thrilling finish against the Los Angeles Chargers, the Chiefs returned to Arrowhead to take on the Los Angeles Rams. When the 2022 schedule was released, everyone thought we would see another high-scoring affair that we saw in 2018. However, it was the exact opposite. The Rams and Chiefs are on entirely different levels regarding trajectory right now. Kansas City defeated Los Angeles 26-10 and advanced to a record of 9-2. Next week they head into a rematch of the AFC Championship game when they take on the Cincinnati Bengals.
2. Eagles (10-1)
The Philadelphia Eagles steamrolled to another victory when they defeated the Green Bay Packers 40-33. Quarterback Jalen Hurts had another impressive outing when he threw for 153 yards and ran for another 157 on the ground. He also threw two touchdown passes as well. His teammate Miles Sanders chipped in with 143 yards and two touchdowns.
3. Cowboys (8-3)
The Dallas Cowboys are shaping to be one of the most dangerous teams in the playoffs this season. On Thanksgiving Day, the Cowboys swept the series with the New York Giants when they won 28-20. Reports have indicated that free agent wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. has narrowed his options to the Cowboys. Adding OBJ gives Dallas another viable option in the passing game to go along with CeeDee Lamb. Lamb torched the Giants for six catches and 106 receiving yards.
4. Miami Dolphins (8-3)
The Miami Dolphins cruised to another victory when they defeated the Houston Texans 30-15. Up next is a showdown with the San Francisco 49ers. Before Mike McDaniel became the Dolphins’ head coach, he was the 49ers, offensive coordinator. Playoff seeding will also be at stake as well. The 49ers and the Dolphins both have one-game leads in their divisions.
5. Buffalo Bills (8-3)
In last week’s power rankings post, I stated that we might be in for an early treat when the Lions host the Bills on Thanksgiving. And that’s precisely what we got when the two teams faced each other. The Bills survived a back-and-forth battle with the Lions to improve their record to 8-3. After missing an extra point late in the fourth quarter, kicker Tyler Bass made a tiebreaking 45-yard field goal with 2 seconds left. But the Bills did lose one of their top players on defense during Thursday’s game with Detroit. Pass rusher Von Miller left the game with a knee injury and did not return to action. According to ESPN NFL Insider Adam Schefter, Miller could miss some or the entire season to recover from Thursday’s injury. If you are a Bills fan, expect Miller to return for the playoffs.
6. Vikings (9-2) Previous Ranking 9th
It was Thanksgiving night, on a primetime setting against Bill Belichick. The stage was set for another lousy game for Vikings QB Kirk Cousins. But it was quite the opposite. The Vikings defeated the New England Patriots 33-26. Cousins threw for 299 yards and three touchdowns. The last go-ahead score to wideout Adam Thielen sealed the victory. The win over New England was greatly needed for Minnesota. In Week 11, they were on the receiving in of a 40-3 beatdown by the Dallas Cowboys.
7. Bengals (7-4) Previous Ranking 8th
The Cincinnati Bengals are peeking at the right time. After coming off back-to-back losses to start the season, the Bengals have won seven out of their last nine games. Their latest win came against a familiar face, the Tennessee Titans. They were able to put away the Titans without the presence of key players such as Ja’Marr Chase and Joe Mixon. Tee Higgins led all receivers with seven catches for 114 yards and one touchdown. They will need Chase and Mixon on the field next week for the rematch with the Kansas City Chiefs.
8. 49ers (7-4) Previous Ranking 10th
It wasn’t one of their better performances of the year, but San Francisco added another win to their record after shutting out the New Orleans Saints 13-0. The second-half shutout was San Francisco’s third straight. The defense was able to force two fumbles from running back Alvin Kamara and ended the NFL’s longest active scoring streak at 332 games. Next on the schedule for the Niners is a game that will feature a familiar face in Dolphins HC Mike McDaniels.
9. Titans (7-4) Previous Ranking 6th
Without question, the Tennessee Titans will repeat as AFC South champions for the third-straight season. But will another one-and-done campaign be in the works? It seems that the team only knows how to succeed when they can control the flow of a game with RB Derrick Henry. The 20-16 to Cincinnati could indicate things to come once the postseason starts.
10. Ravens (7-4) Previous Ranking 7th
I was starting to wonder if Ravens kicker Justin Tucker was from another planet. Down 28-27 late in the fourth quarter, the Ravens attempted a 67-yard field goal. The attempt was ruled no good, and the Ravens suffered their fourth season loss. “The fact that we had a chance to and I didn’t deliver, it’s heartbreaking to me at this point, especially when it’s a kick that I know I have the ability to make,” Tucker said. Baltimore’s offense performed a lot better compared to what we saw in Week 11 against the Panthers. But they must get in sync for the entire game, not the second half.
Power Rankings 11-20: Second Tier
11. Commanders (7-5)
12. Jets (7-4)
13. Giants (7-5)
14. Buccaneers (5-6)
15. Seahawks (6-5)
16. Chargers (6-5)
17. Patriots (6-5)
18. Falcons (5-7)
19. Lions (4-7)
20. Colts (4-7-1)
Power Rankings 21-32: Bottom Tier
21. Jaguars (4-7)
22. Browns (4-7)
23. Raiders (4-7)
24. Panthers (4-8)
25. Cardinals (4-8)
26. Saints (4-8)
27. Packers (4-8)
28. Rams (3-8)
29. Broncos (3-8)
30. Steelers (3-7)
31. Bears (3-9)
32. Texans (1-9)
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