Week 11 NFL power rankings: The Lions are now elite contenders

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The rich get richer, the poor get poorer.

One week after massive shake-ups towards the top of the NFL power rankings, only one of the top 10 ranked teams lost in Week 10. Conversely, only two of the bottom 10 teams tallied victories. The most influential upset to the rankings was easily the previously ranked second-to-last-place Jets knocking off the No. 10 Steelers, but, besides that anomaly, bye weeks and stellar play from the upper tier kept everything relatively quiet for the time being.

With eight of the new top 10 teams playing each other in Week 11, things will certainly be changing soon.

Here are the Week 11 NFL power rankings:

NFL Power Rankings Week #11
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Week 11 NFL power rankings: The Lions are now elite contenders

32. Oakland Raiders (LW: 32)

There are upsets; there are miracles; and then there are feats so impossible that laws of physics need to be broken for them to occur. The winless Raiders could have played a close game against the Broncos. They could not have beaten them. Such are the laws of life. As a reward, they now get to travel to San Diego for their next loss. Of course, anything is possible in a division rivalry, but more realistically, the Raiders will have a better chance of enjoying the weather than the game. At least there’s that.

(Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images)

31. Jacksonville Jaguars (LW: 30)

Regardless of city, time zone, or continent, the Jaguars are terrible. London continues to embrace NFL teams playing regular season games in its city, but it may start to rethink its commitment if we keep shipping teams like Jacksonville across the Atlantic. In fact, if Sunday’s game was a test for how well-received a relocated Jaguars team would be in England, they failed miserably.

(AP Photo/AJ Mast)

30. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (LW: 29)

A quarterback change and a division home game still wasn’t enough for the hapless Tampa Bay Buccaneers to end their four-game losing streak. Despite veteran quarterbackJosh McCown eclipsing 300 yards passing — against the league’s worst pass defense — the Buccaneers lost their fifth consecutive game at the hands of the visiting Falcons and now travel to Washington to play a Redskins team coming off their bye week. The only significance of Buccaneers’ games now becomes next year’s potential draft position.

(Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images)

29. Tennessee Titans (LW: 28)

It looked hopeful early, but the Titans’ trip to Baltimore ended with a double-digit loss that should have surprised no one. Rookie quarterback Zach Mettenberger made his second start of the season and now becomes the third quarterback on the Titans to have started at least two games this year. Tennessee has been in trouble all season, but a game of Musical Chairs at the quarterback position is only valuable if they can determine a winner. As it stands now, all three should probably be left without a seat.

(AP Photo/Gail Burton)

28. New York Jets (LW: 31)

Sound the alarms! Alert the presses! Get your mother in the room! The Jets are back! We featured the Jets’ game against the Steelers heavily in our weekly picks column, and the underdogs from New York were one of our favorite upset picks going into this week. To beat the spread. Not to beat the Steelers.

As improbable as it was, the Jets actually knocked off the high-flying Steelers for their second win of the season. They needed nearly every single bounce to go their way — literally, deflections off receivers found their way into the arms of Jets’ players — a few well-timed wind gusts, and a team caught napping at the right time. Regardless, the Jets’ victory over the Steelers means nothing except the team has further hurt its chances to get a top pick in next year’s draft.

You may now escort your mother out of the room. There’s nothing to see when the Jets are on television anymore. That was the peak of their otherwise wasted season.

(Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)

27. Chicago Bears (LW: 26)

This is out of control. Sitting at the bottom of the NFC North, the Chicago Bears have turned into an abomination. The league’s worst scoring defense, an offense that ranks fifth-worst in turnovers, and a quarterback who has thrown an interception in all but three games — not surprisingly, those were Chicago’s only three wins.

What has been even more fatal for the Bears has been their inability to bounce back. From anything. Only one of their losses has been followed with a win — the long-forgotten Week 2 victory in San Francisco — and they haven’t had the lead in any of their last three games. It also doesn’t help that they have allowed an astounding combined 92 points in the first half of these three contests.

(Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)

(Photo by Toni L. Sandys/The Washington Post via Getty Images)

25. Carolina Panthers (LW: 24)

Each time it looks like it can’t get any worse in Carolina, it does. Losers of four straight games, the Panthers are spiraling out of control and seem to have nothing to stop the tailspin. The formerly stout defense has fallen apart, and Cam Newton, once on top of the world, has regressed across the board. If this continues, the future direction of the franchise and its quarterback may be in doubt.

(Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)

24. New York Giants (LW: 23)

It has gotten bad quickly for the New York Giants. Typically, the definition of stoic consistency — eight straight seasons without a losing record from 2005-2012 — Tom Coughlin and the Giants are now 10-15 dating back to the start of last season. QuarterbackEli Manning has actually done a better job protecting the football this season as compared to last — currently, only six interceptions versus his league-leading 27 last year — but it appears that his options are limited on offense. The loss of Victor Cruz has certainly hurt the team — 0-4 since his injury, including the game in which he tore his knee — but there are little excuses for how poorly they have performed over their past two seasons.

(Photo by Otto Greule Jr/Getty Images)

23. St. Louis Rams (LW: 22)

For a long portion of Sunday’s game, it looked like the Rams were about to knock off their third division opponent in four weeks. That was, until the previously 3-5 Rams reverted back to the perennial losers we have to come to know over the past half-dozen years. Two turnovers for touchdowns — one interception, one fumble — 90 seconds of gametime later the Rams  again plummeted to the basement of the NFC West. St. Louis peaked during their two division upset wins, and have now returned to earth. This should be painfully apparent when they host the Denver Broncos next week.

(Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)

22. Minnesota Vikings (LW: 21)

If any team needed to avoid a bye week in Week 10, it was the Minnesota Vikings. Constantly in the spotlight due to Adrian Peterson and his possible reinstatement, the Vikings had quietly won two straight games and had an outside chance of climbing up the NFC North standings. Now, momentum has been stopped and, instead, filled with controversy. Minnesota simply needs to win games to keep the focus on the football field.

(Photo by Tom Dahlin/Getty Images)

21. Atlanta Falcons (LW: 27)

Finally. Certainly, the perception of the ‘talented’ Atlanta Falcons was largely skewed by their abundance of skill position players who thrive in fantasy football, but it shouldn’t have been this hard. Even with a defense that allows the second-most yards in the league, the Falcons still tout a top-ten offense — ranked eighth in yards — and a quarterback ranked fifth in passing yards, tenth in completion percentage. Quite frankly, they couldn’t have lost their game in Tampa Bay and shown their face in Atlanta afterwards. While 3-6 spells the end of most teams’ seasons, it is actually a plausible thought that the Atlanta Falcons — currently only one game behind the division-leading Saints — have a chance to win the NFC South.

(Photo by Cliff McBride/Getty Images)

20. Houston Texans (LW: 20)

It was only a matter of time before the keys to the Texans’ season was taken from Ryan Fitzpatrick and handed to one of the young backups. As of right now, the new starter following the team’s bye week will be Ryan Mallett. The intention behind this move is likely to capture some wins via an organizational shift, but if things continue going south, Houston may regret not jumping right to fourth-round pick Tom Savage to see what they have for future years.

(AP Photo/Tony Gutierrez)

(Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images)

(Photo by John Grieshop/Getty Images)

17. Buffalo Bills (LW: 15)

It’s been difficult to buy into the Buffalo Bills — they currently only have two wins against teams with winning records — but they held their own fate in their hands when the Chiefs came to town on Sunday. With the Patriots on a bye and the Dolphins losing in Detroit, Buffalo was poised to make a move in the AFC East. Instead, the Chiefs were the team leaving Ralph Wilson Stadium with a 6-3 record. Now, at 5-4, traveling to Miami on Thursday Night will likely make-or-break any hopeful playoff push for the Bills.

(Photo by Tom Szczerbowski/Getty Images)

16. San Francisco 49ers (LW: 17)

Sharing a division with the Cardinals and Seahawks, San Francisco was quickly on the verge of falling out of the NFC West race. The 49ers’ game in New Orleans was dubbed as a ‘must-win,’ and San Francisco pulled it out in overtime, effectively extending their season in the process. They remain a relative longshot going forward, but the 49ers are certainly not dead in the playoff picture.

(Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images)

(Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images)

14. Pittsburgh Steelers (LW: 10)

Letdown potential? Definitely. Trap game? Of course. But a loss against the pathetic Jets? Unacceptable. Pittsburgh was bound to hit a bump in the road after playing at such an insanely high level for consecutive weeks, but getting beaten by the Jets is more like a car accident than a flat tire. In the muddied AFC North, the Steelers could not afford to play as poorly as they did, and they now move right back into the middle-of-the-pack. All the goodwill gained with their victories against the Colts and Ravens have now been erased.

(Photo by Alex Trautwig/Getty Images)

13. San Diego Chargers (LW: 12)

No one should be surprised. The Chargers are nothing if not streaky. Their recent three-game losing streak has turned a 5-1 campaign into a dogfight to survive in the AFC playoff race, and they can only hope that their bye week came at the perfect time to stop their downward momentum.

(Photo by Ronald C. Modra/Sports Imagery/ Getty Images)

(AP Photo/Paul Sancya)

11. Cleveland Browns (LW: 16)

There is no denying or downplaying it any longer — the Cleveland Browns are good. People find it difficult to buy into a team that appears to not have a bevy of obvious talent — they entered the preseason with a ‘quarterback controversy,’ which is typically a sign for disaster — but the Browns play a style of football that transcends perceived talent: smart. Gutsy wins? They run the football. Need to pass? Quick hits to playmakers. When Cleveland was winning games by the narrowest of margins early in the season, it looked like a negative. Now, it’s clear that the Browns’ close wins are more indicative of making the right plays when they matter most.

(AP Photo/David Richard)

10. Kansas City Chiefs (LW:14)

Maybe they won’t sustain it, and maybe they won’t catch up to the Broncos, but the Kansas City Chiefs have now erased an 0-2 start and have won six of their last seven games. Week 10’s trip to Buffalo was surrounded by question marks for each team, but Kansas City came away with the crucial victory. Quietly, the Chiefs have slid into a two-team race with the Broncos for the AFC West.

(AP Photo/Colin E. Braley)

9. Seattle Seahawks (LW: 7)

Like the Cowboys, the Seahawks had more to lose than gain in their Week 10 matchup. Losing, at home, to the Giants would have been a massive setback for the defending Super Bowl Champions fighting hard to keep pace with the Arizona Cardinals. Instead, Seattle pounded the Giants to the tune of five rushing touchdowns and secured a win they could not have afforded to let slip away. Now, the team famous for an unmatched home-field advantage travels to the one place that might be their equal — Kansas City’s Arrowhead Stadium.

(AP Photo/Scott Eklund)

8. Dallas Cowboys (LW: 8)

They won’t get any style points for beating the Jaguars, but the Cowboys had everything to lose and nothing to gain when traveling to London in Week 10. Quarterback Tony Romoreturned to action and now has the bye week ahead of him to provide some extra rest. If nothing else, Dallas was fortunate with the timing of their meeting with Jacksonville and their week away from the playing field.

(AP Photo/Tim Ireland)

(Photo Tom Lynn /Getty Images)

6. Indianapolis Colts (LW: 6)

The Colts have shown neutral NFL fans everything they should want in a football team — a top-notch quarterback, exciting offense, and the ability to bounce back from a rough start to the season en route to a 6-3 mark entering their bye week. What’s even more exciting is that their upcoming Sunday Night showdown with the Patriots has the early makings of one of this season’s must-watch games. The Colts were dormant this week, but the chance to fly up the rankings rests in their hands.

(Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)

5. Philadelphia Eagles (LW: 5)

Different quarterback, same result. Even with Nick Foles out for an undetermined amount of time, the Philadelphia Eagles rolled over the struggling Panthers on Monday Night Football en route to their seventh win of the season. Head coach Chip Kelly appears to get contributions from everywhere — backup quarterback Mark Sanchez sliding into the starting role to defense and special teams — and Philadelphia remains one of the league’s top teams until proven otherwise.

(Photo by Evan Habeeb/Getty Images)

(Photo by Leon Halip/Getty Images)

3. Denver Broncos (LW: 3)

It really wasn’t fair for Oakland. Fresh off a highly-publicized, highly-criticized loss in New England, the Denver Broncos were handed a punching bag upon which to let out their frustration. The Raiders played coy for a little while, actually capturing a lead early in the second quarter, then were subsequently sacrificed in their own home. Denver now looks to do the same in St. Louis, attempting to pick up another win against a weaker opponent — the Rams are the only team currently with a losing record on the Broncos’ remaining schedule until Week 17.

(Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images)

2. Arizona Cardinals (LW: 2)

Another game, another win. With the Cardinals’ home victory over the Rams on Sunday, Arizona improves to 8-1, good for the best record in the National Football League. Even through injuries at the quarterback position — backup Drew Stanton has accumulated 93 pass attempts this season in the absence of Carson Palmer — Arizona consistently avoids a drop-off, and finds contributors throughout the roster. Last week? Two defensive touchdowns in less than two minutes in the fourth quarter to seal the game against the Rams.

Now the real test begins. News has officially broke that Carson Palmer will miss the remainder of the season with a torn ACL, and the Cardinals and Drew Stanton will be thrown right into the fire against the 7-2 Detroit Lions. It’s time to see how complete the Arizona Cardinals really are for more than just short stretches of time.

(AP Photo/Rick Scuteri)

1. New England Patriots (LW: 1)

As the old adage goes, “You can’t lose your job to injury” — in this case, a bye week. False. You can. But the Patriots didn’t. It’s tough to knock last week’s defending Power Rankings Champion off the top of the list without seeing them play last week, but it’s even tougher considering the last time they took the field, New England was dismantling the Broncos. The Patriots have a big test in Indianapolis on Sunday Night Football, but New England remains atop the list until proven otherwise.

(AP Photo/Elise Amendola)


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