1. Houston Texans: Were lucky against the Lions but to win, away from home, on a shortened week all after an overtime game is nothing to sniff at. The only worry is Arian Foster who is on course for 361 carries. Can he handle that sort of load?
2. Denver Broncos: They looked past the Chiefs and almost paid for it. They are still a very good team and a number of good teams have been played close by the Chiefs.
3. Atlanta Falcons: Have not fully righted the ship yet but the win against the Bucs was important. Matt Ryan still looks slightly out of sorts and that is a concern.
4. New England Patriots: Had their way with the Jets on Thanksgiving and now need to keep ticking over before the playoffs. Shouldn’t rush Gronk back, they need him healthy for the playoffs.
5. San Francisco 49ers: Colin Kaepernick had his coming out party against the Saints. He isn’t as polished as Alex Smith but his downfield passing gives the team another dimension. A much more dangerous team with him involved.
6. Chicago Bears: With Cutler throwing the ball to Marshall they are very good. Without them they are a poor team. Injuries are starting to build up.
7. New York Giants: Started their late season form earlier this year with a dismantling of the Packers on SNF. As good as anyone on their day. Tough schedule coming up but a win against the Redskins should give them the division.
8. Green Bay Packers: The loss to the Giants will worry the team and I expect a big reaction this week against the Vikings this week. The NFC North is probably the best division in football but they should make the playoffs with relative ease.
9. Baltimore Ravens: Only beat the Chargers due to a dodgy call by the officials on Ray Rice’s catch and run on 4th and 29. This was a huge call and subsequent win for the Ravens. They have a comfortable lead in the division but their run in is really tough. Could easily go 0-5.
10. Indianapolis Colts: Here in part due to the failure of others but they are deserving of high ranking. They needed to beat the Bills if they wanted a playoff berth and bounced back well after the Patriots loss.
11. Seattle Seahawks: Need to win away from home if they want to crack the top 10 again. They are also hurt by the loss of Browner and Sherman. Could be a rough 4 games without them.
12. Pittsburgh Steelers: It is safe to say they need Big Ben back. Charlie Batch probably needs to retire. The AFC North battle should be fascinating.
13. Washington Redskins: Another ridiculous game for RGIII this week. The defense still has issues but the Skins are a danger to any team. At 5-6 they will need to win out to guarantee the playoffs. MNF against the Giants is a massive fixture.
14. Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Continued to play really hard and very nearly got the win against the Falcons. At 6-5 they are very much still in the hunt but have a tough up coming schedule. It might be a step too far.
15. New Orleans Saints: Came back down to earth against the 49ers. They have two huge games against the Falcons and Giants in the next two weeks. Need to win out if they want a playoff berth.
16. Minnesota Vikings: Were poor against the Bears. Brandon Marshall looked like a man against boys. Chris Cook is a real miss for the Vikings as is Percy Harvin.
17. Miami Dolphins: Bounced back after a few of bad weeks. However it doesn’t get any easier this week with the Patriots this week followed by the 49ers.
18. Cincinnati Bengals: The season has been turned around for Cincy. Still have to play the Ravens and Steelers and have an outside chance to take the division. Need to prove they can compete with the best consistently.
19. Detroit Lions: Were very unlucky on Thanksgiving. Played hard and were the better team. Leshoure has given them a running game and Calvin Johnson is in beast mode.
20. Dallas Cowboys: Were embarrassed on Thanksgiving. The defense looked appalling. Romo almost led them back but fell short. They get to beat up on the Eagles this week.
21. St. Louis Rams: Bounced back after their poor performance against the Jets. Rematch against the 49ers this week. Bradford has started passing down the field which is encouraging.
22. Buffalo Bills: Needed to beat the Colts to keep their faint playoffs hopes alive. They will be a dangerous team down the stretch but there will be plenty of decisions to be made in the offseason.
23. San Diego Chargers: Shouldn’t have lost to the Ravens after a blown call by the refs. Still not scoring enough points even with ok yardage
24. Arizona Cardinals: The Ryan Lindley experiment didn’t go exactly to plan. No quarterback can succeed with that offensive line.
25. Jacksonville Jaguars: Had two good performances back to back which probably spell the end of both Blaine Gabbert and his cheerleader Gene Smith.
26. Cleveland Browns: Hopefully the win against the Steelers will give the team a lift and they can start winning games rather than just being in close ones. Weeden’s health an issue.
27. New York Jets: Mark Sanchez running into Brandon Moore was almost a week ago but it is still funny.
28. Carolina Panthers: Cam Newton looked good again(and one me my fantasy football matchup) but it was against the Eagles. Will need to show more if they want to move up this list.
29. Tennessee Titans: Will be bitterly disappointed they couldn’t beat the Jags. They have reasonable talent but it isn’t playing up to expectations.
30. Philadelphia Eagles: Lame duck head coach and the team know it. They have given up. On the plus side Brandon Graham no longer looks like a total bust.
31. Oakland Raiders: Not even the chance to stick it to his old team could muster any life in Carson Palmer. He will be cut in the offseason so why not see if Pryor can give the offense a spark?
32. Kansas City Chiefs: Played the Broncos close but didn’t do enough to move off the bottom. The offense is turgid but at least the D stepped up.