NFL POWER RANKINGS: Where Every Team Stands Going Into Week 12

tom brady new england patriots quarterback

Photo: Nick Laham/Getty Images

An injury-plagued Week 11 went basically as played.Nine of the top-12 teams and eleven top-15 teams won, and the six worst teams in our power rankings last week all lost.

As we enter Turkey Day, the playoff picture continues to clear up.

Click here to see the rankings >
Once again, here’s how we came up with them.

We took our rankings from last week and moved teams up and down based on the following criteria:

  • A win: up 2 spots
  • A loss: down 1 spot
  • A loss by 10+ points: down 2 spots
  • A win against a top-5 team from the week before: up 2 spots
  • A win against a top-12 team from the week before (aka, a playoff team): up 1 spot
  • Covering the point spread: up 1 spot
  • A winning record: up 1 spot
  • A losing record: down 1 spot
  • No team with a winning record can be outside the top 16

1. Houston Texans (#1 last week): Beat the Jaguars

Record: 9-1

Biggest thing we learned this week: Andre Johnson is back. He had 14 catches for 273 yards and looked more energetic than he has in years.

2. Baltimore Ravens (#3 last week): Beat the Steelers

Record: 8-2

Biggest thing we learned this week: Joe Flacco is still a question mark, but they have skills players like Jacoby Jones who can bail them out with big plays, which they haven't had in recent years.

3. Atlanta Falcons (#2 last week): Beat the Cardinals

Record: 9-1

Biggest thing we learned this week: The defence is now good enough to win a game by itself. This is a huge step for an Atlanta team that needed to score and protect the ball to win in the past.

4. Green Bay Packers (#5 last week): Beat the Lions

Record: 7-3

Biggest thing we learned this week: They have kicker issues. Mason Crosby is in a huge slump, and they need to fix him before the playoffs.

5. New England Patriots (#7 last week): Beat the Colts

Record: 7-3

Biggest thing we learned this week: A healthy Rob Gronkowski really makes this offence a juggernaut. But now he's hurt.

6. San Francisco 49ers (#8 last week): Beat the Bears

Record: 7-2-1

Biggest thing we learned this week: There's now a legitimate QB controversy after Colin Kaepernick had a 133 passer rating in the 32-7 mauling of the Bears.

7. Chicago Bears (#4 last week): Lost to the 49ers

Record: 7-3

Biggest thing we learned this week: Jay Cutler is secretly incredibly important. This team has totally fallen apart without him, despite all the criticism he takes.

8. Pittsburgh Steelers (#6 last week): Lost to the Ravens

Record: 6-4

Biggest thing we learned this week: They're REALLY toast if Roethlisberger is out. They've looked terrible since he went out against the Chiefs two weeks ago.

9. Denver Broncos (#10 last week): Beat the Chargers

Record: 7-3

Biggest thing we learned this week: They kill below-average teams. The combined record of the three opponents that beat them is 25-5, but they've only beaten one team with a winning record.

10. Seattle Seahawks (#9 last week): Bye

Record: 6-4

Biggest thing we learned this week: Nothing!

11. New York Giants (#11 last week): Bye

Record: 6-4

Biggest thing we learned this week: Nothing!

12. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (#14 last week): Beat the Panthers

Record: 6-4

Biggest thing we learned this week: Josh Freeman can still run a two-minute drill. He pulled out all sorts of crazy wins in 2010, and now he's back to scoring clutch TDs after a rough 2011 season.

13. Minnesota Vikings (#13 last week): Bye

Record: 6-4

Biggest thing we learned this week: Nothing!

14. Indianapolis Colts (#12 last week): Lost to the Patriots

Record: 6-4

Biggest thing we learned this week: Their defence isn't good enough to withstand turnovers on offence. Indy is 6-1 when they turn it over two times or less, and 0-3 when they turn it over at least three times.

15. Dallas Cowboys (#16 last week): Beat the Browns

Record: 5-5

Biggest thing we learned this week: They survived a trap game, and now need to beat Washington on Thanksgiving to stay a meaningful part of the wild card race.

16. Cincinnati Bengals (#18 last week): Beat the Chiefs

Record: 5-5

Biggest thing we learned this week: They're poised to make a nice run. They play four-straight sub-.500 teams before Pittsburgh and Baltimore in the final two weeks of the season.

17. New Orleans Saints (#20 last week): Beat the Raiders

Record: 5-5

Biggest thing we learned this week: The defence played well for the second-straight week, but they get big tests against San Francisco, Atlanta, New York, and Tampa starting this week.

18. Detroit Lions (#15 last week): Lost to the Packers

Record: 4-6

Biggest thing we learned this week: They're teetering on the edge right now. They just sent home Titus Young for having a bad attitude, and a Thanksgiving Day drubbing could really send them into a tailspin.

19. San Diego Chargers (#17 last week): Lost to the Broncos

Record: 4-6

Biggest thing we learned this week: The offence is just a total mess -- Rivers can't stop turning the ball over, the offensive line is porous, and there are no playmakers on the outside.

20. New York Jets (#21 last week): Beat the Rams

Record: 4-6

Biggest thing we learned this week: Tim Tebow isn't going to play significant snaps unless Sanchez gets hurt.

21. Miami Dolphins (#19 last week): Lost to the Bills

Record: 4-6

Biggest thing we learned this week: Ryan Tannehill may have hit the rookie wall. He was just 14-28 for 141 yards, 1 TD, and 2 INTs for his second-straight rough game.

22. Washington Redskins (#23 last week): Beat the Eagles

Record: 4-6

Biggest thing we learned this week: RG3 is historically good.

23. Arizona Cardinals (#22 last week): Lost to the Falcons

Record: 4-6

Biggest thing we learned this week: They benched John Skelton after just seven pass attempts. They have no idea what to do at the QB position.

24. Buffalo Bills (#26 last week): Beat the Dolphins

Record: 4-6

Biggest thing we learned this week: The defence is starting to play better. A lot of people wrote them off after a rough first month, but Mario Williams and Co. have looked good recently.

25. Tennessee Titans (#25 last week): Bye

Record: 4-6

Biggest thing we learned this week: Nothing!

26. Philadelphia Eagles (#24 last week): Lost to the Redskins

Record: 3-7

Biggest thing we learned this week: The Nick Foles Era is off to a rough start.

27. Carolina Panthers (#28 last week): Lost to the Bucs

Record: 2-8

Biggest thing we learned this week: They're better than their record indicates. They rank 19th in total defence and 22nd in total offence. They're still bad, but they're not the worst team in the NFL.

28. Cleveland Browns (#29 last week): Lost to the Cowboys

Record: 2-8

Biggest thing we learned this week: They're tough! Brandon Weeden has been quietly competent since the first few weeks of the year.

29. St. Louis Rams (#27 last week): Lost to the Jets

Record: 3-6-1

Biggest thing we learned this week: Their defence is collapsing, since week 7, they're 30th in the NFL in points allowed.

30. Oakland Raiders (#30 last week): Lost to the Saints

Record: 3-7

Biggest thing we learned this week: The defence has given up 135 points in the last three games.

31. Jacksonville Jaguars (#32 last week): Lost to the Texans

Record: 1-9

Biggest thing we learned this week: Chad Henne played well! Catch the fever!

32. Kansas City Chiefs (#31 last week): Lost to the Bengals

Record: 1-9

Biggest thing we learned this week: Brady Quinn isn't the answer. He was 9/14 for 95 yards in the second half despite Cincy sitting on a big lead.

Business Insider Emails & Alerts

Site highlights each day to your inbox.

Follow Business Insider Australia on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Instagram.