NFL Picks: Week 12 Power Ratings and Cheat Sheet

Want to get the charts out early this week with three games on Thanksgiving.

Earlier in the week I separated my power ratings by AFC only and NFC only, and wrote about the playoff races in each conference.

I will tweet out any picks that I like this week. Currently there are nine favorites of a touchdown or more, including three that are 13.5 or more. Because of that it will probably be a light week with the amount of picks I make.

At first glance, the sides that stuck out and interested me were Bills (if Taylor starts), Buccaneers, Colts and Saints.

Team After Week 10 After Week 11
Eagles 12 13
Patriots 12 13
Steelers 11 11.5
Saints 11 10
Rams 10.5 10
Vikings 9.5 10
Panthers 9.5 9.5
Falcons 9 9.5
Jaguars 9 9
Chiefs 10.5 8
Chargers 7.5 8
Seahawks 9 7.5
Cowboys 8.5 7.5
Redskins 7 7
Lions 6.5 6.5
Titans 7 6
Raiders 6.5 5.5
Ravens 5.5 6
Bengals 5 5.5
Bills 5 4
Buccaneers 3 3.5
Bears 3.5 3
Jets 3 3
Broncos 3 2.5
Cardinals 3 2.5
Dolphins 2.5 2
Packers 2.5 1.5
Texans 1 1.5
Colts 1 1
49ers 1 1
Giants -1 0
Browns -1 -1
Game Look ahead line Wednesday line My line
Vikings at Lions Lions -1.5 Vikings -3 Vikings -1
Chargers at Cowboys Cowboys -4 Pick ’em Cowboys -1.5
Giants at Redskins Redskins -8.5 Redskins -7 Redskins -9
Browns at Bengals Bengals -8 Bengals -8 Bengals -8.5
Bears at Eagles Eagles -11.5 Eagles -13.5 Eagles -11.5
Dolphins at Patriots Patriots -14.5 Patriots -16.5 Patriots -14.5
Bills at Chiefs Chiefs -7.5 Chiefs -10 Chiefs -7
Buccaneers at Falcons Falcons -9 Falcons -10 Falcons -9
Panthers at Jets Panthers -4 Panthers -4.5 Panthers -4.5
Titans at Colts Titans -6.5 Titans -3.5 Titans -2.5
Seahawks at 49ers Seahawks -8.5 Seahawks -7 Seahawks -5
Saints at Rams Rams -1.5 Rams -2.5 Rams -2
Jaguars at Cardinals Jaguars -3.5 Jaguars -5 Jaguars -4.5
Broncos at Raiders Raiders -6.5 Raiders -5 Raiders -6
Packers at Steelers Steelers -12.5 Steelers -14 Steelers -12.5
Texans at Ravens Ravens -7.5 Ravens -7 Ravens -7



Breaking Down the NFC After Week 11

The NFC playoff picture started to take shape after key results in Week 11. The Vikings slowed down the Rams to maintain their lead the NFC North. The Eagles dominated the Cowboys to pretty much wrap up their division and put Dallas’ playoff hopes on life support. The Falcons scored a huge win in Seattle and the banged-up Seahawks look to have a challenging path to even making the postseason. Just like I did with the AFC yesterday, here is how I would rate 16 NFC teams.

Team Power Rating Record
Eagles 13 9-1
Saints 10 8-2
Rams 10 7-3
Vikings 10 8-2
Panthers 9.5 7-3
Falcons 9.5 6-4
Seahawks 7.5 6-4
Cowboys 7.5 5-5
Redskins 7 4-6
Lions 6.5 6-4
Buccaneers 3.5 4-6
Bears 3 3-7
Cardinals 2.5 4-6
Packers 1.5 5-5
49ers 1 1-9
Giants 0 2-8

As you can see the top half of this conference is far better than the top of the AFC. Out of the top eight teams in the whole league, six of them play in the NFC. A playoffs involving the Eagles, Saints, Rams, Vikings, Panthers are Falcons would be extremely fun. I think all six teams have a case to make the Super Bowl, unlike the AFC where I only see two contenders. We’ll get potential playoff previews in the last six weeks of the regular season as many of the top NFC teams still play each other.

The Cowboys and Seahawks were recently in the top part of my power ratings but multiple losses of star players forces me to downgrade both teams. At this point, I would be shocked if Dallas made the playoffs and the Seahawks look like they need to win the NFC West to be playing in January.

The Redskins have two less losses than the Lions but I think that Washington is a better team. The Redskins are coming off a stretch of games where they played the Eagles, Cowboys, Seahawks, Vikings and Saints. They went 1-4 in that stretch but three of those games were on the road, including the win in Seattle. Washington was also without key offensive lineman and their most consistent receivers for part of this brutal stretch. Their playoff hopes have greatly dwindled but I still would make them a favorite on a neutral field over the Lions.

The Lions are not as good as their record indicates but they could find themselves right back in the division race if they beat the Vikings on Thanksgiving. They would own the tiebreaker over Minnesota so it’s a must-win game for Detroit. They are still a team I will look to fade in the last six weeks of the season.

There’s a pretty big drop off between the Lions and the last six teams in my NFC rankings. The Buccaneers, Bears, Cardinals, Packers, 49ers and Giants are all below average. The Packers are 5-5 but are a completely different team when Aaron Rodgers is out. If Rodgers was healthy then the NFC would’ve been even more loaded.