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NFL power rankings: Patriots closing in on No. 1 Rams  1 Day ago

Source:   USA Today  

NFL power rankings, post-Week 6 edition:

1. Rams (1): Now we know they own all-weather offense. But they'll hardly need it in playoffs, where they'll be playing in L.A., New Orleans and/or Atlanta.

2. Patriots (4): Sony Michel has little shot of overtaking Saquon Barkley in ROY race, but he does lead all first-year backs with 80 rush yards per game.

3. Saints (3): Drew Brees can reach two more milestones this Sunday — TD pass No. 500 and beating the only team he's never vanquished ... the Ravens.

5. Chargers (5): Remember when Melvin Gordon was barred from end zone in his 2015 rookie year? He has 33 TDs since, more than anyone but Todd Gurley (36).

6. Ravens (10): Say hello to NFL's new No. 1 defense. Baltimore has allowed more than 14 points only once, which greatly reduces pressure on Joe Flacco et al.

7. Steelers (11): As Le'Veon Watch rolls on, interesting that team's next two games are against Cleveland and Baltimore. Pittsburgh has one AFC North game in second half.

8. Bengals (7): Maybe they're better off with a wild card. They've basically never won a big game at Paul Brown Stadium, AFC's most sparsely attended venue.

9. Vikings (12): They scored their first rushing TDs of season Sunday ... and we only just learned what we'd been missing with Kirk Cousins' celebrations.

10. Eagles (19): Doesn't Corey Clement, coming off 10 days to rest his healing quad, deserve chance to be lead back? Don't forget what he did in Super Bowl.

11. Redskins (14): Washington and Dallas are only teams to alternate wins, losses all season, and one of them will break form following Sunday's showdown.

12. Packers (15): Appears Aaron Rodgers is gaining more and more trust in those young receivers he chided in training camp. Of course, A-Rod never lost faith in his kicker.

13. Panthers (6): If you thought returns of Thomas Davis and Greg Olsen would give them a boost ... OK, cards on the table, we thought the same thing.

14. Dolphins (16): Brock Osweiler is your classic Band-Aid — nicely effective for a very limited period of time before it starts to look really gross.

15. Bears (9): Speaking of Osweiler, we can only assume Khalil Mack was taking pity on the man he once sacked five times in a single afternoon.

16. Falcons (21): Matt Ryan's 2016 season was starting to look like major statistical outlier, but this year's numbers approaching or exceeding MVP levels.

17. Seahawks (25): Let's acknowledge legacy of Paul Allen, a quiet man who saved professional football in Seattle and turned this franchise into a force.

19. Cowboys (26): Stifling D. Complementary play of Dak Prescott and Zeke Elliott balancing offense. Winning turnover battle. They looked like 2016 Cowboys.

20. Browns (13): Defense is cracking. Takeaways continue but count for less in last three weeks when Cleveland has allowed nearly 100 points and 1,500 yards.

21. Jaguars (8): Jalen, how could Dallas shred y'all? "I don’t know." How do Jags not own AFC South? "I don’t know." Y'all about to splinter? "I don’t know."

22. Jets (22): K Jason Myers poured in 24 points Sunday. What do Steph Curry, James Harden and Russell Westbrook have in common? None average 24 ppg.

23. Lions (23): Fun fact (unless you're Matthew Stafford), but guess which quarterback owns most career passing yards (36,134) without a playoff win? Yup.

24. Titans (17): They've gone from being more than the sum of their parts to less than the sum of their parts. No way Marcus Mariota should be sacked 11 times.

25. Broncos (24): They have one game in Denver before Nov. 25, hardly an elixir for a team that's lost four in a row and typically relies on home cooking.

26. Buccaneers (18): Defensive coordinator Mike Smith became first to walk plank. Dirk Koetter, Jameis Winston could be fitted for blindfolds soon enough.

27. Colts (27): Our colleagues at The Indianapolis Star have already begun assessing prospects who will be available at the top of the 2019 NFL draft.

28. Bills (28): Not sure whether it would be best to give Nathan Peterman a hug, or loop Lawrence Taylor saying, "Son, y’all got to do better than this."

29. Cardinals (31): We wouldn't want Larry Fitzgerald's dad (or Larry Fitzgerald) mad at us, but at least this group has begun showing more fight week to week.

30. 49ers (32): They seem to lose a key player by the week, yet Kyle Shanahan's charges fight to the final whistle every time out, an encouraging sign for the future.

31. Giants (29): Shame to see Saquon Barkley's transcendent rookie season go to waste, especially since this is a group no longer showing much fight.

32. Raiders (30): Who's next to go? Amari Cooper? Gareon Conley? Reggie McKenzie? Jon Gruden's "team" has even lost its label as the Bay Area's best.

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