December 22, 2021   5 MIN READ

ITB’s NFL Power Rankings

Rams Built Tough; Godwin Injury Threatens Bucs


In our weekly NFL team rankings, we’ll grade them by:
– Roster
– Current Injury Issues
– Coaching
– Performance
– Record

[Caplan’s Note:] We don’t subscribe to the theory that a team with a lesser record can’t be ranked higher than a team with a better record. It’s about how they look as of now based on the criteria listed above.

Rams Cupp

The Rams are back on track despite their grapple with Covid-19

1) Green Bay Packers (11-3; ranked last week: #1): In the NFL, you want to be playing your best when it really matters in December and the Packers are certainly doing that.

2) Kansas City Chiefs (10-4; ranked last week: #5): Their COVID-19 situation is concerning, but the Chiefs have still won seven straight games and still should win the AFC West.

3) Los Angeles Rams (10-4; ranked last week: #6): I gotta give them some credit considering how bad their COVID-19 situation has been lately, but can they keep it going?

4) Arizona Cardinals (10-4; ranked last week: #2): They need to get their energy back ASAP and and they should against the much improved Colts.

5) Dallas Cowboys (10-4; ranked last week: #7): They continue to get it done on defense, which is needed due to their struggles of late on offense.

6) Tampa Bay Buccaneers (10-4; ranked last week: #4): The loss of WR Chris Godwin due to a torn ACL is a real concern.

7) Indianapolis Colts (8-6; ranked last week: #10): Another terrific win for the Colts, who have won five of their last six games, but they have a very tough matchup on the road against the Cardinals on Saturday.

8) New England Patriots (9-5; ranked last week: #3): They were flat for most of last week’s game and now face a rematch against the Bills.

9) Tennessee Titans (9-5; ranked last week: #8): They really need WR A.J. Brown to play this week in order to help their slumping passing game.

10) Buffalo Bills (8-6; ranked last week: #11): If they can find a way to beat the host Patriots on Sunday, the Bills could actually wind up winning the AFC East.

11) Cincinnati Bengals (8-6; ranked last week: #14): Again, it’s hard to trust this team, but the Bengals are still one of the AFC’s most talented

12) Los Angeles Chargers (8-6; ranked last week: #9): They outplayed the Chiefs, but found a way to lose, which has been the story of their season.

13) Baltimore Ravens (8-6; ranked last week: #12): Tough loss, but at least the Ravens found their #2 QB of the future.

14) San Francisco 49ers (8-6; ranked last week: #16): Somehow, they’ve won five of their last six games and are almost a lock to gain an NFC Wild Card spot.

15) Miami Dolphins (7-7; ranked last week: #17): Another win (six in a row), but the Dolphins still are unlikely to get into the playoffs. However, hopefully they can carry some positive momentum into next season.

16) Philadelphia Eagles (7-7; ranked last week: #19): I can’t recall the last time I saw a team completely change their offensive identity in season and it working as well as it has.

17) Pittsburgh Steelers (7-6-1; ranked last week: #18): A nice comeback win last week, but they still are unlikely to get into the AFC playoffs.

18) New Orleans Saints (7-7; ranked last week: #20): Hard to believe they won by scoring just nine points, but at least the Saints still have a chance to secure an NFC Wild Card spot if they continue to win.

19) Cleveland Browns (7-7; ranked last week: #13): It’s hard to put my finger on what is exactly wrong with this team, but the Browns are
underachieving a bit this season.

20) Las Vegas Raiders (7-7; ranked last week: #23): A nice road win for a team that has been very up and down this season.

21) Minnesota Vikings (7-7; ranked last week: #24): While they’re the #7 seed currently in the NFC, there’s nothing that shows that they’re going to be a playoff team.

22) Denver Broncos (7-7; ranked last week: #15): Their QB nightmare will continue until the offseason.

23) Atlanta Falcons (6-8; ranked last week: #21): The reality of being a mediocre team has come to pass.

24) Washington Football Team (6-8; ranked last week: #22): They’re having trouble overcoming their COVID-19 and injury issues, which is why they won’t make the playoffs.

25) Seattle Seahawks (5-9; ranked last week: #25): Something has to give with their awful passing game.

26) Carolina Panthers (5-9; ranked last week: #26): Like about 6-to-7 teams, they’re a good QB away from being a solid playoff contender.

27) New York Giants (4-10; ranked last week: #27): It’s hard to believe they are as bad as their record currently is.

28) Chicago Bears (4-10; ranked last week: #28): This is a team that is clearly in transition.

29) New York Jets (3-11; ranked last week: #29): Well, at least they’re armed with a lot of salary cap space and draft picks for the future.

30) Houston Texans (3-11; ranked last week: #30): If they could only play the Jaguars each week.

31) Detroit Lions (2-11-1; ranked last week: #32): Their record might be bad, but the Lions continue to play competitive football most weeks and are actually 9-5 against the spread.

32) Jacksonville Jaguars (2-12; ranked last week: #31): So much for the team being energized after the firing of its head coach.

– Adam Caplan (@caplannfl) is co-host of the “Inside the Birds” podcast and staff writer for

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