Week 12 in the NFL brought a few key surprises but for the most part the better teams in the league worked more to separate themselves. Although there isn’t too much big change near at the top of Sporting News’ NFL power rankings ahead of Week 13, a few more hot contenders kept up the momentum while some better first-half teams continued to fade.
The Eagles and Chiefs remain the class of the league after taking down struggling former NFC powers. The Bears and Texans are still down at the bottom after absolute cold streaks.
From top to bottom and in between, here’s how all 32 teams stack up against each other with six weeks of action left:
MORE: Updated NFL playoff picture after Week 12
NFL power rankings Week 13
1. Philadelphia Eagles 10-1 (previous week: 1)
The Eagles had too much relentless offense against the Packers, even though their defense continued to be a growing concern at home, especially against the run. They still are looking good for big things in the NFC, but the competition is slowly closing the gap.
2. Kansas City Chiefs 9-2 (2)
The Chiefs rolled through the Rams with little need from their usual big-time Patrick Mahomes offense. It was a good defensive tuneup in Kansas City. They’ll need him as the MVP again with Joe Burrow and the Bengals next in Cincinnati.
3. Miami Dolphins 8-3 (3)
The Dolphins had no trouble blowing through the weak Texans’ defense at home with Tua Tagovailoa dealing well again. They are serious threats to take the AFC East away from the Bills but have a big test next against Mike McDaniel’s former team, the 49ers, in San Francisco.
4. Buffalo Bills 8-3 (4)
The Bills saw Josh Allen get closer to his real passing and running self in Detroit, even though was a bit of an extra grind for the right result. They need to keep figuring out more things offensively again with the Patriots next on a Thursday.
5. Dallas Cowboys 8-3 (5)
The Cowboys continued to run the ball well and play tough defense against the Giants and even though Dak Prescott isn’t playing totally clean, he’s slowly finding his groove again in their diverse and explosive passing game. They can keep up the momentum over the next month, facing three AFC South teams before the rematch with the Eagles.
6. Minnesota Vikings 9-2 (6)
The Vikings got their offense going again with Kirk Cousins and Justin Jefferson leading the way against the Patriots. They made a key statement in prime time to quickly rebound from the Cowboys’ debacle and on the cusp of locking up the NFC North title.
7. San Francisco 49ers 7-4 (8)
The 49ers’ defense is back to being a dominant force and the offense, even with limited scoring, can control a game. They fought hard to shut out the Saints and got prepped a little for the higher-octane Dolphins at home next week.
8. Cincinnati Bengals 7-4 (11)
The Bengals looked more like the Super Bowl contenders from last season by winning in Tennessee against a playoff-tough Titans team. They won with defense and timely running even without Joe Mixon. They’ll need more from Joe Burrow, too, vs. Mahomes.
9. Tennessee Titans 7-4 (7)
The Titans got their running game contained with Derrick Henry and couldn’t pass enough with Ryan Tannehill to outduel Burrow. They will need to really “Titan up” everywhere with the Eagles up in Philadelphia next.
10. Baltimore Ravens 7-4 (9)
What was that? The Ravens blew another late lead, negating another late comeback with Lamar Jackson. Their defense got hit with some key injuries in Jacksonville, with old struggles vs. the pass happening again.
11. New York Giants 7-4 (10)
The Giants fought hard with their remixed offense for Daniel Jones and Saquon Barkley, but their run defense issues have become a big bugaboo. They’re still looking good for an NFC wild card, but the winning the East is out of reach now.
12. Washington Commanders 7-5 (14)
The Commanders need more attention for what they’re doing defensively after their early-season mess. They’ve adjusted well and are making big plays on the ball with better situational football. The offense keeps getting just enough from Taylor Heinicke and his diverse weapons.
MORE: Mike White shows Zach Wilson ‘the real New York Jets football’ in win over Bears
13. New York Jets 7-4 (16)
The Jets woke up their entire passing game with Mike White starting at quarterback, unlocking more wild-card potential for the stretch run. The defense didn’t lose a beat to give them their most complete victory of the season. The degree of difficulty from the Bears gets raised quickly, however, with at Vikings and at Bills next.
14. Los Angeles Chargers 6-5 (17)
The Chargers made a great escape in the desert, thanks to Justin Herbert and Austin Ekeler overcoming more key injuries around them and the defense providing a late lift in Arizona. They won’t let up in pursuing a wild card behind the Chiefs with the Raiders next.
15. Seattle Seahawks 6-5 (12)
The Seahawks broke down defensively against the Raiders, especially against the run, and made too many mistakes offensively without a consistent rushing attack of their own. They can go back to proving their hot first half isn’t a fluke against the Rams and Panthers the next two weeks before they see the 49ers again.
16. New England Patriots 6-5 (15)
The Patriots’ defense crumbled when facing a diverse, explosive and multiple offense in Minnesota as it has enough holes in those type of matchups. The good news is, Mac Jones started to play well and that will be key to maintain with the Bills next.
17. Tampa Bay Buccaneers 5-6 (13)
The Buccaneers blew a late lead with Tom Brady after a bye, which brings a new level of frustration on top of the overtime loss to the Browns. Their defense also got gashed by the run again and gave up too many critical pass plays. They are only a playoff team because they play in the NFC South.
MORE: How Todd Bowles’ poor clock management cost Buccaneers in OT loss to Browns
18. Indianapolis Colts 4-6-1 (20)
The Colts feel like a legitimate team again with Jeff Saturday. The Raiders’ victory was solid and the Eagles’ fight was real. They need to take care of business offensively and defensively in a favorable home date with the Steelers on Monday night.
19. Atlanta Falcons 5-7 (18)
The Falcons tried to grind away a victory with Marcus Mariota and playmaking defense in Washington, but they fell well short on both counts. They will now need to focus on taking down the Buccaneers in the South.
20. Jacksonville Jaguars 4-7 (27)
The Jaguars keep impressing in their quick restocking rebuild under Doug Pederson, with Trevor Lawrence being the natural key offensive centerpiece. Watch out for bigger things from them in the AFC South next season.
21. Las Vegas Raiders 4-7 (28)
The Raiders can keep thinking about what might have been after back-to-back wild comeback overtime road wins at Denver and Seattle. They’ve gone back to living vs. dying by the close game. Derek Carr, Josh Jacobs and Davante Adams have become the “triplets” they should have been for Josh McDaniels all season.
22. Cleveland Browns 4-7 (25)
The Browns refuse to completely fade in the AFC playoff race and have two recent big wins over the Bengals and Buccaneers. Even though Jacoby Brissett has played really well, they will have confidence a big run can still come with Deshaun Watson taking over at QB.
23. Detroit Lions 4-7 (19)
The Lions showed more of their offensive grit in their run-heavy attack around Jared Goff and the defense has proved capable of making some big plays at times. The rebuilding results already have a positive spin, no matter how they finish now for Dan Campbell.
MORE: Will the Packers shut down injured Aaron Rodgers for Jordan Love audition?
24. Green Bay Packers 4-8 (22)
Aaron Rodgers was playing as well as he can with his right thumb injury and with what he has out there, especially given the Packers’ defense has gone into the tank and looked worse against the Eagles. The injuries are no longer underrated in dragging them down, given that now includes Rodgers with his ribs, too.
25. Arizona Cardinals 4-8 (21)
The Cardinals got DeAndre Hopkins and Marquise Brown together with Kyler Murray and James Conner for some better offensive results. Their defense also got revved up in the pass rush for Herbert. They still didn’t deliver what was needed on either side in the clutch to win for Kliff Kingsbury.
26. Carolina Panthers 4-8 (31)
The Panthers keep getting off the mat well defensively with interim coach turned full-time candidate Steve Wilks. They finally hit on a QB answer, at least for a week, with Sam Darnold.
27. New Orleans Saints 4-8 (23)
The Saints marched into San Francisco with no offense despite a scrappy performance by Dennis Allen’s defense. It’s been trying overall season of injuries and inconsistency and there’s not enough duct tape.
28. Los Angeles Rams 3-7 (24)
The Rams don’t look like the Rams without Matthew Stafford, Cooper Kupp, Allen Robinson and others. Bryce Perkins and their young backs and receivers did OK to help Aaron Donald and their defense in Kansas City, but there just isn’t anything there for Sean McVay.
29. Pittsburgh Steelers 3-7 (26)
The Steelers are playing to be much improved for next season, ahead of what should be a promising full Year 2 with Kenny Pickett and upgraded personnel. You can bet Mike Tomlin’s team will be relentless and pesky, despite no winning season in sight in 2022.
30. Denver Broncos 3-8 (29)
The Broncos’ dominant defense vs. disappointing offense woes with Russell Wilson game to a head in Carolina, as only Latavius Murray was reliable on one side, putting a lot of pressure on the other side. The clock keeps ticking faster for Nathaniel Hackett.
31. Chicago Bears 3-9 (30)
The Bears did their best to stay competitive without Justin Fields and with Trevor Siemian, but their shell of a defense cost them big-time again vs. run and pass against the Jets. They will hope to end their five-game losing streak at some point in the next five games.
32. Houston Texans 1-9-1 (32)
The Texans are trying everything to try to be more competitive but their defensive issues have spilled from run to pass without Derek Stingley Jr. and their quarterback woes remain with Kyle Allen instead of Davis Mills.