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The Grueling Truth - Where Legends Speak / NFL Week 17 Power Rankings: A New Number One

NFL Week 17 Power Rankings: A New Number One

Dan's NFL Power Rankings for Week 17!
Publish Date: 12/28/2023
Fact checked by: Mike Goodpaster

We are heading into week 17 of the NFL regular season, and it’s nut up or shut up time. We still have a slew of teams still firmly in the mix for playoff spots, and number one seeds still up for grabs in both conferences. This week also has a couple of heavyweight match-ups. The Detroit Lions, after winning their division for the first time since 1993, head to Jerry World to play the Cowboys. Baltimore will look to lock up the number one seed in the AFC as they host Miami. Without further ado, here’s my NFL Week 17 Power Rankings!

  1. BALTIMORE RAVENS  12-3
  2. SAN FRANCISCO 49ERS  11-4
  3. MIAMI DOLPHINS  11-4
  4. PHILADELPHIA EAGLES  11-4
  5. DETROIT LIONS  11-4
  6. BUFFALO BILLS  9-6
  7. DALLAS COWBOYS  10-5
  8. KANSAS CITY CHIEFS  9-6
  9. CLEVELAND BROWNS  10-5
  10. HOUSTON TEXANS  8-7
  11. LOS ANGELES RAMS  8-7
  12. TAMPA BAY BUCCANEERS  8-7
  13. CINCINNATI BENGALS  8-7
  14. INDIANAPOLIS COLTS  8-7
  15. SEATTLE SEAHAWKS  8-7
  16. JACKSONVILLE JAGUARS  8-7
  17. GREEN BAY PACKERS  7-8
  18. LAS VEGAS RAIDERS  7-8
  19. PITTSBURGH STEELERS  8-7
  20. ATLANTA FALCONS  7-8
  21. MINNESOTA VIKINGS  7-8
  22. NEW ORLEANS SAINTS  7-8
  23. DENVER BRONCOS  7-8
  24. CHICAGO BEARS  6-9
  25. NEW YORK JETS  6-9
  26. NEW YORK GIANTS  5-10
  27. LOS ANGELES CHARGERS  5-10
  28. TENNESSEE TITANS  5-10
  29. NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS  4-11
  30. ARIZONA CARDINALS  3-12
  31. WASHINGTON COMMANDERS  4-11
  32. CAROLINA PANTHERS  2-13

  • Baltimore has had its ups and downs this season, but they’ve won five games in a row, and they just smacked the San Francisco 49ers – who many, myself included, considered to be the best overall team in the league this season. I still believe the 49ers are the best team in the NFL, but this was a bad loss, and Brock Purdy was the main reason. Although McCaffry, Kittle, and Aiyuk had good games, Purdy killed any momentum the offense had by throwing an uncharacteristic four interceptions.

 

  • Lamar Jackson played well again, and even though his passing stats aren’t pretty, he deserves to be in the MVP conversation. The Ravens boast the league’s top rushing offense, an elite defense, and have an upper echelon head coach in John Harbaugh. If Jackson can keep the turnovers down and make the types of plays he was able to make against the 49ers’ defense, this team is a legit Super Bowl contender. Oh, Baltimore can also lock up the top seed in the AFC with a win over the Dolphins.

 

  • Kansas City lost to the Raiders, and it wasn’t pretty at all. The Chiefs’ offense struggled again, and they gave up two turnovers that went for touchdowns in the second quarter. The Chiefs defense was also unable to stop backup running back Zamir White from racking up 145 rushing yards – the most rushing yards he’s had in either college or the NFL. Kansas City’s defense continues to play well (they held Las Vegas to 205 total offensive yards, and 48 passing yards), but the offense has been letting the team down the last couple of months.

 

  • People will ask “what’s wrong with Mahomes?”, but he isn’t the problem. While the team leads the league in dropped passes by wide receivers, that isn’t entirely to blame either. The team lacks an identity on offense, aren’t running the ball with any consistency, and the offensive line has been up and down (they lead the league in offensive holds). With Mahomes, Andy Reid, and an elite defense, I have confidence this team can figure it out, but the playoffs are around the corner and they better get it together sooner than later.

 

  • I know…I’m crazy for where I have the Lions, but I just don’t trust them (still). They’re tied for the best record in the NFC, and could legitimately get the one seed if they win out (with some help). The Jared Goff led offense is elite – 3rd total yards, 6th in passing, 3rd in rushing, and 5th in scoring. So why am I not sold that this is a good football team so late in the season? Maybe it’s the fact that Goff is a different (worse) QB on the road than at home, maybe it’s the fact that the defense is below average against the pass and allowing almost 24 points per game (24th in the league), maybe it’s just the Lions fan in me that doesn’t want to get too excited; maybe it’s a little bit of all of those and more.

 

  • Buffalo is streaking; through the quad, and into the gymnasium! Maybe they’re a little high on my NFL week 17 power rankings, but I’ve been saying on the NFL Betting Show over the past few weeks that I still thought Buffalo had a shot at making a run to the playoffs. Three straight wins later, and they’re right in the middle of it. The passing offense has been mostly pedestrian over these three games, but they’re running the ball well, and the defense is playing lights out. Buffalo’s defense has allowed only four total touchdowns during this three game winning streak, and have allowed just over 89 yards rushing per game (which would be 3rd in the NFL if that was what they allowed over the course of a full season). They need more from Josh Allen and the passing game, but if the defense keeps this kind of play up and the offense figures it out, this will be a dangerous squad come playoff time.
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