NFL Power Rankings: Week 17

By Matt Fargo - Covers Expert

With the playoffs quickly closing in, it's become clear that the top tier has separated themselves from the rest of the pack as the top seven remain the same in the final power rankings of the regular season.

NFL Power Rankings

Rank Last Week Change Team W-L-T (ATS) Power Rating Team Comments
1 1 same 12-3-0
(9-6-0)
-9.25 New England
The Patriots clinched home field advantage throughout the playoffs and will likely rest some players this week hence the line going from -11 to -4.5.
2 2 same 11-4-0
(7-8-0)
-8 Denver
Denver stays at number two despite a loss against Cincinnati. The Broncos can clinch a first round bye with a win vs. Oakland or a Cincinnati loss.
3 3 same 11-4-0
(8-6-1)
-7.75 Seattle
Seattle has won five straight games and can clinch home field advantage with a win and a Dallas loss or tie or if the Packers and Lions do not end in a tie.
4 7 up 3 11-4-0
(8-6-1)
-5.25 Green Bay
The Packers got back into the win column and is set for a showdown with the Lions for the NFC North title. Can clinch home field with a win and Seattle loss.
5 4 down 1 10-5-0
(9-5-1)
-4.5 Indianapolis
Indianapolis got rolled by the Cowboys and will be hosting a first round playoff game. Despite not being able to move up, starters will not rest this week.
6 5 down 1 8-7-0
(9-6-0)
-4.25 Kansas City
The Chiefs are the highest ranked team not already in the playoffs. They need to win this week and have the Ravens lose and have the Texans lose or tie.
7 6 down 1 11-4-0
(10-5-0)
-4 Arizona
Arizona could be starting its fade as the quarterback situation is a mess. They have clinched a playoff berth but will likely be heading on the road in the first round.
8 13 up 5 11-4-0
(9-6-0)
-3.5 Dallas
The Cowboys made a big move this week with the dismantling of the Colts to claim the NFC East. The chances of a first round bye are very slim however.
9 17 up 8 10-5-0
(8-7-0)
-3.25 Pittsburgh
The Steelers clinched a playoff spot last week and can win the AFC North with a win which means a home playoff game. A loss means hitting the road next week.
10 8 down 2 9-6-0
(7-7-1)
-3 Baltimore
Baltimore faltered at Houston and needs help to get into the playoffs. The Ravens need to win at home against Cleveland and have the Texans lose against Jacksonville.
11 10 down 1 8-7-0
(7-8-0)
-2.75 Miami
The Dolphins won over Minnesota last week but were eliminated from playoff contention. They are big favorites over the Jets and could be in for a letdown.
12 12 same 9-6-0
(7-8-0)
-2.5 San Diego
San Diego spotted the 49ers a 21-0 lead before coming back to win in overtime. The Chargers playoff scenario is easy as they have to win at Kansas City.
13 9 down 4 8-7-0
(8-7-0)
-2.25 Buffalo
The Bills could not ride the momentum of the Green Bay win as they lost in Oakland and were eliminated from playoff contention. Lost 13 straight in New England.
14 15 up 1 10-4-1
(8-6-1)
-2.25 Cincinnati
Cincinnati finally got a breakthrough win and can clinch the AFC North with a win in Pittsburgh and can get a first round bye with a win and Denver loss.
15 14 down 1 11-4-0
(7-8-0)
-2.25 Detroit
The Lions won ugly in Chicago and now a win in Green Bay means the NFC North crown and a first round bye. Lost 23 straight meetings in Green Bay.
16 11 down 5 9-6-0
(8-7-0)
-2.25 Philadelphia
Philadelphia was eliminated from playoff contention with its loss in Washington and has nothing to play for this week against the Giants. Tough team to back this week.
17 16 down 1 8-7-0
(9-5-1)
-1.5 Houston
Houston is still alive for the playoffs as it is in if its wins and both Baltimore and San Diego lose. Pretty good story considering they are on their fourth quarterback.
18 18 same 6-9-0
(7-8-0)
0.75 St. Louis
St. Louis closes its season in Seattle on a two-game losing streak and against a Seahawks teams that needs to win and will be out for revenge from a loss in October.
19 19 same 7-8-0
(6-8-1)
1 San Francisco
The 49ers blew a big lead against the Chargers for their fourth straight loss but are a touchdown favorite against Arizona, despite this being a huge game for the Cardinals.
20 21 up 1 6-9-0
(10-5-0)
1.75 Minnesota
Minnesota fought hard once again as it lost by two points against Miami. The Vikings have covered five straight games and can add to that against reeling Chicago.
21 24 up 3 6-9-0
(7-8-0)
2 N.Y. Giants
The Giants are playing their best football of the season with wins in three straight and their last two losses by a combined four points. Host the Eagles this week.
22 23 up 1 6-9-0
(7-8-0)
2.5 Atlanta
Atlanta pulled out a big win at New Orleans and can clinch the NFC South with a win over Carolina. Would host next week despite a 7-9 record should it win.
23 20 down 3 6-9-0
(6-9-0)
2.5 New Orleans
The Saints closed the season with five straight home losses and have nothing to play for this week in Tampa Bay. They have won six straight meetings in this series.
24 22 down 2 7-8-0
(8-5-2)
3.25 Cleveland
Cleveland has lost four straight games and has been outgained by 530 yards the last three games. The only thing left to do is play spoiler in Baltimore this week.
25 25 same 6-8-1
(7-8-0)
3.5 Carolina
The Panthers have won three straight games and can win the NFC South with a win or a tie against Atlanta. Looking to become first team in NFC South history to repeat.
26 26 same 5-10-0
(6-9-0)
4.75 Chicago
Chicago continues to stumble with four straight losses as the Marc Trestman days are numbered. Jay Cutler will be back as the starting quarterback this week.
27 27 same 3-12-0
(5-9-1)
5 N.Y. Jets
The Jets continue to play hard for Rex Ryan as they have covered three of four with the only loss coming in overtime. Road team has won five straight in series with Miami.
28 28 same 3-12-0
(8-7-0)
5.75 Oakland
Oakland is 3-2 after a 0-10 start following its win over Buffalo. The Raiders will not make things easy for Denver although they are 0-7 on the road.
29 29 same 4-11-0
(5-10-0)
6.25 Washington
Washington eliminated rival Philadelphia from the playoffs and has a chance to sweep the Cowboys this week, thus hurting Dallas' playoff positioning.
30 30 same 2-13-0
(6-9-0)
8.25 Tampa Bay
The Buccaneers are 0-7 at home and while they do not want to finish winless, a loss against the Saints assures them of the #1 pick in the upcoming NFL Draft.
31 31 same 3-12-0
(5-9-1)
8.5 Jacksonville
Jacksonville has a chance to end the season 3-2 if it can win at Houston this week. The Jaguars are 0-7 on the road though and the Texans have a lot at stake.
32 32 same 2-13-0
(3-11-1)
9.75 Tennessee
Tennessee dropped its ninth straight game and has failed to cash in five straight games. A loss this week guarantees one of the first two picks in the NFL Draft.

Power Ratings compute offensive and defensive statistics into one number for each team, while accounting for factors like recent performances and strength of schedule. Power Ratings can be used as a baseline for relative spread index to compare current or future match-ups between two teams. The relative spread does not account for non-statistical factors like home-field advantage, recent injuries, game time decisions, rivalries, publicity, and weather.