NFL power rankings: Cowboys, Ravens rise; Lions, Browns drop thanks to revived Broncos, Packers for Week 13

NFL Week 12 provided a full slate of games again with no byes, providing a great opportunity to size up all 32 teams at the same time. Starting with the Thanksgiving tripleheader, continuing with the Black Friday surprise and a loaded marquee Sunday, there was plenty to digest.

Through the many key division matchups and various other challenges, there was a lot more learned about every team with only six weeks left in the 2023 regular season. Here’s an updated look at the league’s hierachy heading into Week 13, with some interesting changes near the top:

MORE: Updated 2024 NFL Draft order after Week 12 games

NFL power rankings Week 13

1. Philadelphia Eagles 10-1 (previous week: 1)

The Eagles might be more impressive winning close games against fellow Super Bowl contenders than they are dominating against lesser opponents. Outlasting the Chiefs in a hostile road environment and resilient enough at home to come back against the Bills three times in the fourth quarter and overtime is special. Jalen Hurts went right back into MVP form in outdueling Patrick Mahomes and Josh Allen in consecutive weeks.

2. San Francisco 49ers 8-3 (2)

The 49ers dominated with defense overall against the Seahawks and grinded through to a fine offensive performance in a tough road environment on Thanksgiving. They are flexing as a complete NFC force at the right time, right before the Eagles showdown in Philadelphia.

3. Kansas City Chiefs 8-3 (4)

The Chiefs started slowly offensively against the Raiders and their defense also had bad lapses. But then their young receivers beyond Travis Kelce came through for Patrick Mahomes as they had their most complete offensive performance in several weeks, getting ready for the stretch run.

4. Baltimore Ravens 9-3 (5)

The Ravens took down the Chargers by their usual dose of pressure, good coverage and forcing turnovers. They proved they can still dominate rushing offensively while still maintaining ace situational passing with Lamar Jackson.

5. Miami Dolphins 8-3 (6)

The Dolphins got back to knowing they can win games against lesser foes with the running game and defense vs. forcing the passing too much when it’s not there with Tua Tagovailoa in tougher matchup. They should keep rolling with a favorable few weeks ahead.

6. Jacksonville Jaguars 8-3 (7)

The Jaguars made another offensive statement in Houston as they got Trevor Lawrence, Travis Etienne, Calvin Ridley all clicking at the same time in a huge division game. They also flexed when needed defensively per usual with big plays in big moments.

7. Dallas Cowboys 8-3 (8)

The Cowboys don’t mess around with weaker opponents. They blasted the Commanders as their latest offensive feast on Thanksgiving. Dak Prescott’s MVP case is getting more impressive by the week during his unbelievable heater with the Seahawks up next.

8. Detroit Lions 8-3 (3)

The Lions were rare strong home favorites on Thanksgiving, only to meet a familiar losing result against the Packers. They are still looking good with the running game and underneath passing game, but Jared Goff is off when there are pressure leaks and the young defense is experiencing more breakdowns. 

Kenny Pickett

9. Pittsburgh Steelers 7-4 (11)

The Steelers found a better mix of offense playing to their strengths with the power running game balancing out a steadier short-to-intermediate passing game with Kenny Pickett. Their defense keeps holding its end of the bargain.

10. Denver Broncos 6-5 (16)

Sean Payton and Russell Wilson have led a remarkable turnaround, not just from last season’s mess, but from where they were this season, 1-5 before the Broncos’ current five-game winning streak. The schemes and personnel are meshing as expected now.

MORE: Diontae Johnson explains lack of effort during play vs. Bengals

11. Cleveland Browns 7-4 (9)

The Browns are now into the tank offensively with their quarterback mess as neither Dorian Thompson-Robinson nor P.J. Walker can give them enough answers. It’s such a shame to see them starting to waste their historically good defense.

12. Houston Texans 6-5 (10)

The Texans saw more spectacular play from C.J. Stroud, but their offensive line, inconsistent running game and sometimes weak zone defense cost them plenty vs. the Jaguars. Houston now needs to scratch more for.a wild card with it falling out of second place in the division.

Josh Allen

13. Buffalo Bills 6-6 (13)

The Bills looked great for much of the game in Philadelphia, until they had too many defensive breakdowns to allow their revived stellar offense to lead them to victory. Buffalo suffered a big blow in the division race behind Miami and now is caught in a muddled middle in the wild-card chase.

14. Minnesota Vikings 6-5 (14)

The Vikings have a good fighting spirit under Kevin O’Connell and still should feel good about their playoff chances after a 0-3 start. Josh Dobbs needs to help settle their offense a little more in the red zone to keep them on the winning track.

15. Seattle Seahawks 6-5 (12)

The Seahawks are in late-season crisis mode. Although their defense is showing signs of improvement, especially against the pass, their offense seems out of sync in trying to mesh downfield passing with power running. Seattle can still sneak into the playoffs with good coaching but its situation is more precarious.

16. Indianapolis Colts 6-5 (18)

The Colts are treading water as an AFC wild-card hopeful, taking advantage of a weak South vs. South schedule. They are getting enough from their running game and defense with Gardner Minshew fearless in making complementary pass plays. Shane Steichen deserves some rookie coaching love in the division, too.

Jordan Love

17. Green Bay Packers 5-6 (21)

The Packers are getting renewed confidence in Jordan Love with some better health and depth from key young weapons working better with the first-year starting QB. They can stay hot to make a real wild-card push.

18. Cincinnati Bengals 5-6 (15)

The Bengals showed more positive offensive flashes than expected with Jake Browning replacing an injury Joe Burrow, but they simply couldn’t sustain drives the same way. Now the biggest concern is a defense that really can’t stop anything in the middle vs. running games and tight ends.

19. Los Angeles Rams 5-6 (23)

The Rams got a fully healthy Matthew Stafford and Kyren Williams back in their offense together and the results were great for Sean McVay, really making it much easier on Aaron Donald and the defense in Arizona. They’ve suddenly gone from fading to back in the NFC playoff picture.

20. Atlanta Falcons 5-6 (24)

The Falcons found their type of offense again vs. the Saints, actually feeding top young playmakers Bijan Robinson and Drake London well with a revived Desmond Ridder. The defense also showed more inspired play at home.

Bijan Robinson

21. New Orleans Saints 5-6 (17)

The Saints marched into Atlanta with more shaky QB play from Derek Carr, exacerbated by losing wide receivers Chris Olave and Rashid Shaheed to injuries. Carr is making too many big mistakes and the defense is wilting more than expected vs. the run.

22. Las Vegas Raiders 5-7 (19)

The Raiders came out revved up offensively for the Chiefs, but they finally didn’t get the big plays on either side and the defensive issues at most sports came to the surface, especially against the run in key spots. They’re just trying to finish out playing hard every week for Antonio Pierce.

23. Los Angeles Chargers 4-7 (22)

The Chargers did show the needed defensive resilience under Brandon Staley but their offense went into the tank with bad mistakes against the Ravens. They cannot seem to get all the bolts to align at the same time and Staley’s seat is red hot.

24. Tampa Bay Buccaneers 4-7 (20)

The Buccaneers are keeping their defense together by duct tape and now it’s starting to unravel with one too many key injuries. The offense is pretty good for Baker Mayfield, but it’s rather compressed with just 4-5 playmakers.

Derrick Henry, Browns 09192023

25. Tennessee Titans 4-7 (29)

Will Levis finally got a chance to attack a weak defense again at home and came through with a strong assist from Derrick Henry. The Titans will take the free space for their defense as they try to sneak back into respectability.

26. New York Jets 4-7 (25)

The Jets can’t find any more offensive answers with either Zach Wilson or Tim Doyle at quarterback and Aaron Rodgers’ potential return seems pointless now. The defense is really now breaking down with its heavy burden, especially against the run.

27. New York Giants 3-8 (27)

The Giants have found an offensive spark with rookie gamer Tommy DeVito at QB, leaning a lot more on the running game and defense to win battles of attrition. Whatever the coaching controversy might be with Brian Daboll, there’s no quit in the team.

28. Washington Commanders 4-8 (26)

The Commanders hit a wall defensively with limited personnel and poor schematic play vs. the pass. For the time being, Jack Del Rio is the scapegoat, but the writing is on the wall for Ron Rivera too. To make matters worse offensively, there are real franchise QB long-term concerns with Sam Howell.

Ron Rivera

29. Chicago Bears 3-8 (28)

The Bears are on the brink of trusting Justin Fields going forward as the franchise QB, but he needs to keep playing well to keep them thinking of finding his replacement in the 2024 draft. The Vikings road game on Monday night is the next huge step.

30. Arizona Cardinals 2-10 (30)

The Cardinals were showing great competitive life and looked to be much better with Kyler Murray raising their offense, but their defensive holes were exploited big time by the Rams in every way, reminding Jonathan Gannon has a lot of work ahead.

31. New England Patriots 2-9 (31)

The Patriots had to change QBs and rely mostly on their running game against the Giants and wasted a huge defensive effort. They hit a new level of offensive ineptitude as it keeps getting worse for Bill Belichick.

32. Carolina Panthers 1-10 (32)

The Panthers are close to rock bottom with their offense despite some flashes from Bryce Young. You wonder how much longer fickle owner David Tepper will stick with his latest mess.

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