NFL News & Analysis

NFL Week 14 Power Rankings: The Cincinnati Bengals make their push, Kansas City Chiefs remain at No. 1

Nashville, Tennessee, USA; Cincinnati Bengals quarterback Joe Burrow (9) calls a play to his team as they face the Tennessee Titans during the third quarter at Nissan Stadium. Mandatory Credit: George Walker IV-USA TODAY Sports

• Biggest riser: Detroit Lions (up three places)

• Biggest faller: Los Angeles Chargers (down three places)

Estimated reading time: 5 minutes

NFL Week 14 Power Rankings

  1. Kansas City Chiefs
  2. Buffalo Bills
  3. Philadelphia Eagles
  4. Dallas Cowboys
  5. San Francisco 49ers
  6. Cincinnati Bengals
  7. Miami Dolphins
  8. Baltimore Ravens
  9. Tampa Bay Buccaneers
  10. Minnesota Vikings
  11. Tennessee Titans
  12. New York Jets
  13. Seattle Seahawks
  14. Cleveland Browns
  15. Los Angeles Chargers
  16. New England Patriots
  17. New York Giants
  18. Washington Commanders
  19. Jacksonville Jaguars
  20. Las Vegas Raiders
  21. Detroit Lions
  22. Green Bay Packers
  23. Arizona Cardinals
  24. New Orleans Saints
  25. Atlanta Falcons
  26. Pittsburgh Steelers
  27. Denver Broncos
  28. Chicago Bears
  29. Los Angeles Rams
  30. Indianapolis Colts
  31. Carolina Panthers
  32. Houston Texans

NFL Week 13 Highlights

Baker's busy week: Quarterback Baker Mayfield requested his release from the Panthers, which they accepted, and he was subsequently picked up on Tuesday by the Los Angeles Rams — just in time for Thursday Night Football. The Rams have the 26th hardest remaining schedule, according to PFF Greenline, which may help Mayfield adapt to his new offense.

The Bills finishing strong: The Bills' win over the Patriots — along with the losses suffered by the Jets and Dolphins — gives Josh Allen & Co. the No. 1 seed in the AFC, but they stay second in our rankings. They will play the Jets and Dolphins in the next two weeks to determine the final standings in the AFC. PFF Greenline gives the Bills a 16% chance of winning the Super Bowl and a 27% chance of winning the conference championship. Despite this, Josh Allen is only +1400 to win MVP this season.

The Colts' collapse: The Colts have struggled, even after the recent coaching changes. The Cowboys won 54-19 last Sunday night, scoring 33 points in the fourth quarter — the most Dallas has ever scored in the fourth quarter.

Tough break for Detroit: The Lions may have beaten the Jaguars, but the Giants-Commanders tie drastically lowered Detroit's chances of making the playoffs.

Browns take a step back on offense: Deshaun Watson’s first game back in 700 days resulted in his worst PFF grade since Week 14 of the 2019 season. It’s no surprise that he was a bit rusty. The Browns earned their worst team passing grade (48.3) since Week 1 of this season. It was a defensive game for them, as the only points they scored in the first half came via a punt-return touchdown. The second half wasn’t much better, with points coming courtesy of a fumble recovery, a pick-six and two field goals. 

Same old Brady: The Buccaneers rallied in the fourth quarter with a little over five minutes left to beat the Saints. A 44-yard pass interference penalty helped them get into the red zone to score.

Biggest Riser: Detroit Lions

The Lions' 2022 season mirrors a stock volatility chart: It soared in the first few weeks before crashing down to the bottom of the rankings only to continue its now steady rise following a last-second loss to the Bills and a dominant win over the Jaguars. 

Stuck with one of the NFL’s worst defenses, the Lions have needed to ride an efficient offense all year. And the offense has done its part, scoring touchdowns on close to 30% of drives (third-best in the NFL). Entering Week 14, they rank seventh league-wide in expected points added (EPA) per play and sixth in drive success rate. Offensive linemen Frank Ragnow, Penei Sewell and Jonah Jackson all rank top-five in PFF run-block grade and have formed the core of a solid Lions run game.

Looking ahead, the offensive outlook has only improved, with RB D’Andre Swift now finally healthy and wideouts D.J. Chark and first-rounder Jameson Williams back in the fold to line up alongside superstar wide receiver Amon-Ra St. Brown (90.7 PFF Grade).

As healthy as they’ve been all year, we might need to ponder whether the Lions are making a late-season push to restore the roar. 

Biggest Faller: Los Angeles Chargers

Following a 7-point loss to the 4-7 Raiders, the Chargers are our biggest faller in this week’s power rankings. The offense scored 13 offensive points against a defense that entered the game ranked 32nd in EPA allowed per play, and the offensive line allowed a combined 21 pressures to Maxx Crosby and Chandler Jones.

While Justin Herbert had his weekly highlight throw to Keenan Allen on a fourth-and-18, he was under duress all game and couldn’t string drives together to help the Chargers pull off the win.

The Chargers defense has taken a big step back this year. Davante Adams went for 177 yards on this secondary, and Josh Jacobs went over 100 rushing yards. Making things worse, the key cog on their defensive line, Sebastian Joseph-Day, also got hurt during the Raiders game, which could be a huge loss for the rest of the season.

Effect of Injuries (WAR)

Quarterback injuries: Week 13 wasn't exactly a great week for some of the NFL's quarterbacks. Jimmy Garoppolo is out for at least seven weeks with a foot injury, Matthew Stafford was placed on injured reserve, Tua Tagovailoa injured his ankle and Lamar Jackson suffered a knee injury.

A big loss for the Seahawks: The Seahawks rely heavily on RB Kenneth Walker III, so his ankle injury may negatively impact the team. Among rookie running backs, Walker is second to only Houston's Dameon Pierce in terms of WAR.

Bengals lose Hayden Hurst: The Bengals had not suffered many injuries on either side of the ball, but Hayden Hurst left the game with a calf injury last week. Hurst is 10th in terms of WAR among tight ends this season (0.199). His backups, Devin Asiasi and Mitchell Wilcox will look to fill the void. 

Reinforcements for Brady and the Bucs: The Buccaneers have been banged up this season, but there is some hope, with left tackle Tyron Smith designated to return from IR on Wednesday.

Fourth-Down Decision-Making

Browns punting away: Although the Browns ended the game with a 27-14 win over the Texans, they struggled on fourth downs. They punted six times for the second week in a row. 

The Saints' missed opportunity: The Saints punted on fourth-and-1 on the Tampa Bay 44-yard line with five and a half minutes left in the fourth quarter, which led to a Buccaneers touchdown. Another punt after that resulted in another Buccaneers touchdown. And that put an end to the Saints’ lead.

Game Finishers

The best and the worst: Out of seven plays in the red zone this week, the Chargers converted none of them. The Lions, on the other hand, converted all four of their drives this week.

Dallas and L.A. leading the way: The Cowboys and Rams lead the league in successful drive percentage in the red zone (94.7% and 93.5%), yet the Rams are 19th in terms of PFF grade in the red zone. The Cowboys have also generated the most EPA per play in the red zone (0.381).

Stepping up when it matters most: On the other side of the ball, the Bills have stopped 30.6% of red-zone drives. The Broncos defense has also been successful in the red zone, having allowed the least EPA per red-zone play (-0.282).

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