NFL power rankings: 49ers jump Eagles at top; Packers, Colts keep rising as Chiefs, Steelers fade for Week 14

Week 13 was a typical week during the 2023 NFL regular season, with great fortune for several teams and rotten luck for other teams. Some would say the results, either way, are the residue of good or bad design.

There are only five weeks left before the playoffs, and the positioning continued ahead of Week 14, from teams battling for qualifying seeds to falling into their draft slots.

Here are Sporting News’ latest NFL power rankings after Week 13, 1-32: 

MORE: Updated NFL playoff picture after Week 13 games

NFL power rankings Week 14

1. San Francisco 49ers 9-3 (previous week: 2)

The 49ers have outscored their opponents 134-49 during their four-game winning streak after a bye, following a three-game slump. That’s almost 34 points per game as their offense is rolling with Brock Purdy locked into Brandon Aiyuk, Deebo Samuel, George Kittle and Christian McCaffrey at the same time. The defense is cleaning up again with elite complementary football, too.

2. Philadelphia Eagles 10-2 (1)

The Eagles’ major defensive liability vs. the pass was exploited in a big way vs. the 49ers. When their rush can’t get there and the stout run defense is positioned to wear down, they are doomed. Jalen Hurts and the offense can do only so much to bail out the team in consistent tough spots.

3. Baltimore Ravens 9-3 (4)

The Ravens got a much-needed bye to help them regroup for the stretch run in a tough AFC North and a tight playoff picture at the top of the conference. Lamar Jackson should adjust better in the passing game without Mark Andrews with increased trust in his wide receivers, while Baltimore’s defense will look to get stingier vs. the pass.

MORE: Tyreek Hill continues pace to 2,000 yards after another monster game

4. Miami Dolphins 9-3 (5)

The Dolphins did the expected with Tyreek Hill and ripped into the reeling Commanders pass defense for another high-scoring rout in Washington. They need to keep taking care of business vs. overwhelmed defenses with the Titans and Jets next.

5. Dallas Cowboys 9-3 (7)

The Cowboys’ defense had some breakdowns vs. downfield pass and power run to open Week 13 on Thursday, but Dak Prescott, Tony Pollard and their red-hot skill players made sure the offense wasn’t denied. Now they must raise their level again against a tough close stretch, starting with a first-place shot at the Eagles at home on Sunday night.

6. Kansas City Chiefs 8-4 (3)

The Chiefs’ offense is now morphing into a reliable rushing team with consistent major questions about downfield passing when not working to the tight ends or the slot. Patrick Mahomes is doing his best but some of his receivers and offensive linemen have been letdowns. Kansas City cannot expect its defense to come through in every game.

7. Jacksonville Jaguars 8-3 (6)

The Jaguars are hoping to maintain their late AFC playoff momentum for a second straight season by now taking care of a favorable matchup at home against the Bengals on Monday night. Trevor Lawrence will be difficult to cool off now that he’s gotten hot again.

8. Detroit Lions 9-3 (8)

The Lions’ defense still is having issues holding opponents down, now wilting vs. the run and not having reliable downfield coverage behind a limited pass rush. But when Jared Goff and protect the ball and they win the turnover margin and then finish with the running game,

9. Houston Texans 7-5 (12)

The Texans are digging deep as a young team to get right back into playoff contention with a rookie coach and the runaway OROY QB, C.J. Stroud. Now the defense with Will Anderson Jr. and Darryl Stingley Jr. is matching the youthful energy of the offense at the right time.

10. Pittsburgh Steelers 7-5 (9)

The Steelers’ offense seemed lost without Kenny Pickett after a hot start against the Cardinals. who hurt his ankle at the least inopportune time. The defense also reverted to getting gashed by the power run and having shaky coverage. The good news is the Patriots come to their home next.

11. Los Angeles Rams 6-6 (19)

The Rams have seen Matthew Stafford come back healthy and now he’s locked in with his full complement of receivers again. Kyren Williams has revived the running game at the same time and that’s inspired Aaron Donald and the defense to respond better for this playoffs-positioned team.

12. Indianapolis Colts 7-5 (15)

The Colts have found their sweet spot passing downfield with Gardner Minshew and also are getting it done in key moments with defense and special teams. Shane Steichen is in the running for coach of the year now with the Texans’ DeMeco Ryans and the Rams’ Sean McVay.

13. Cleveland Browns 7-5 (11)

The Browns are doing their best to save their season at quarterback and Joe Flacco was a good solution to get the most out of their offense. But their defense starting to break down and get ripped was unforeseen as part of their potential freefall from playoff position.

14. Green Bay Packers 6-6 (17)

Jordan Love is now getting into a total groove in the offense with him having more trust in his very young but deep weapons group. He is fearless now in taking some shots now he can still be efficient. His play is now inspiring the defense, too, showing off his young leadership traits.

15. Buffalo Bills 6-6 (13)

The Bills are quickly losing their margin of error to earn an AFC wild-card berth, but the good news is none of the other AFC wild-card contenders in front of them are running away with the race. The idea is to clean up a lot of mistakes from Josh Allen and breakdowns from the defense in the final five games.

16. Denver Broncos 6-6 (10)

The Broncos got sloppy offensively for the first time in a while with Russell Wilson under Sean Payton and their defense continues to give up too many chunks vs. the run and a few too many big pass plays. The Texans’ loss was a brutal blow.

17. Minnesota Vikings 6-6 (16)

The Vikings are evaluating quarterback but are likely sticking with Josh Dobbs with Justin Jefferson coming back to spark the passing game. The defense and running game need to be a bigger part of the formula to close out another playoff berth.

18. Seattle Seahawks 6-6 (14)

The Seahawks woke up their offense with some big plays running and passing in Dallas as they simplified things for Geno Smith and his considerable skill weapons. But the downside was the defense reverting to bad issues vs. the pass. Inconsistency can cost them a second straight trip to the playoffs.

Desmond Ridder, Drake London

19. Atlanta Falcons 6-6 (20)

The Falcons won a game with a scrappy defense and a resilient rushing attack with not much else working against the Jets. They can feel good about getting to .500 and leading a division, but there’s not much safe ahead of the Buccaneers and Saints unless they play better, especially offensively back at home with Ridder vs. the Bucs.

20. Cincinnati Bengals 5-6 (18)

The Bengals are trying to hang in there with no Joe Burrow offensively, but his lacking presence has hurt them everywhere behind line issues and running game limitations. The defense also is getting further exposed, especially vs. the run.

21. Los Angeles Chargers 5-7 (23)

The Chargers have saved Brandon Staley’s standing for now by playing much improved defense even with no Joey Bosa. If they can keep winning like that knowing Justin Herbert will get it going soon with healthier weapons, they can make a strong late run toward the playoffs.

22. Tampa Bay Buccaneers 5-7 (24)

Baker Mayfield to Mike Evans has been one of the best stories of the season, along with the emergence of Rachaad White. The Buccaneers’ offense has exceeded expectations now post Tom Brady and they just need their defense to get a little healthier to take the division.

23. New Orleans Saints 5-7 (21)

The Saints aren’t quitting with some offensive adversity and still are right there positioned to take their weak division. But the defensive breakdowns are worrisome as they aren’t the same vs. pass and run with personnel and scheme.

24. Las Vegas Raiders 5-7 (22)

The Raiders are in a temporary transition at coach and quarterback the rest of the way after firing Josh McDaniels and starting rookie Aidan O’Connell. They will lean on the defense and running game mostly the rest of the way to get closer to .500.

Justin Fields

25. Chicago Bears 4-8 (27)

The Bears need to keep seeing Justin Fields play well all-around after the bye to be convinced not to use a high draft pick on a new potential franchise QB. The improved defense and running game doesn’t hurt in trying to get him a few more third-year wins.

26. New York Giants 4-8 (28)

The Giants should keep taking a long look at Tommy DeVito with Daniel Jones down as there have been some late sparks for the offense. Defense is hoping to become a brighter spot for Brian Daboll to push for a finish to inspire in 2024.

27. Tennessee Titans 4-8 (25)

The Titans’ reliable and stellar punting game let them down most before Ryan Stonehouse went down in a strong all-arounds effort vs. the Colts. Now they need to readjust for Will Levis with Derrick Henry battling more injury attrition.

28. New York Jets 4-8 (26)

The Jets’ offense has more fundamental problems than poor QB play as Nathaniel Hackett is repairing the Broncos debacle. Aaron Rodgers might need to return to save face to help save Hackett’s job.

29. Arizona Cardinals 3-10 (30)

The Cardinals shocked the Cowboys earlier in the season but pulled off an more surprising romp at Pittsburgh with their offense looking strong with Kyler Murray in a James Conner’s revenge game and their defense also didn’t break down everywhere as usual. They will try to play pesky spoilers vs. the 49ers after the bye.

30. Washington Commanders 4-9 (29)

The Commanders’ defense went further into the tank without Jack Del Rio as it was undressed by the Dolphins’ passing game. Given Ron Rivera is defensive-minded and it’s another bad home loss, it’s not looking for good for him in Washington beyond 2023, either.

31. New England Patriots 2-10 (31)

The Patriots found a way to field even more inept offense after a QB change with an embarrassing 6-0 loss at home. Bill Belichick has now hit rock bottom post Tom Brady and it won’t get better vs. Mike Tomlin and the Steelers on a short week.

32. Carolina Panthers 1-10 (32)

The Panthers had a little spark with interim coach Chris Tabor with Bryce Young, Chuba Hubbard and the rest of the offense playing much better in Tampa Bay, but the defensive lapses still were too numerous to overcome to double the win total.

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