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Arizona Sports NFL Power Rankings Week 17: Saints hold, Rams move up

New Orleans Saints quarterback Drew Brees (9) celebrates a touchdown by running back Alvin Kamara, not pictured, in the first half of an NFL football game in New Orleans, Sunday, Dec. 23, 2018. The Saints won 31-28, clinching the top seed for the NFC and home field advantage for the playoffs. (AP Photo/Butch Dill)

Things are pretty interesting at the top of the league heading into the final weekend of the regular season.

The New Orleans Saints survived a scare from the desperate Pittsburgh Steelers and once again are the top team in our NFL Power Rankings.

Meanwhile, the Rams’ dismantling of the Cardinals without Todd Gurley bumped them back up into the top two while the Bears continued to play stellar defense in their win over San Francisco to earn top-three status for the first time all season.

The Chiefs and Chargers both dropped decisions, but still round out the top five.

Here’s a look at this week’s order:

Arizona Sports NFL Power Rankings – Week 17

Rank Team Record Result Movement Comment
1. New Orleans Saints 13-2 beat Pittsburgh 31-28 (–) First time the Saints have hit 30+ points in a month.
2. Los Angeles Rams 11-3 beat Arizona 31-9 (▲2) Goff turnover-free; no Gurley, no problem vs. hapless Cardinals.
3. Chicago Bears 11-4 beat San Francisco 14-9 (▲2) Have allowed 32 points during three-game winning streak.
4. Kansas City Chiefs 11-4 lost to Seattle 38-31 (▼1) Is Kansas City’s December swoon in full effect?
5. Los Angeles Chargers 11-4 lost to Baltimore 22-10 (▼1) Chargers had only one possession that netted over 34 yards vs. Baltimore.
6. New England Patriots 10-5 beat Buffalo 24-12 (▲1) What a shock — the Patriots are AFC East champs…
7. Baltimore Ravens 9-6 beat LA Chargers 22-10 (▲4) The Ravens have ridden a ridiculous defense to a Super Bowl before. Just sayin’.
8. Houston Texans 10-5 lost to Philadelphia 32-30 (▼2) Dropped two of last three.
9. Indianapolis Colts 9-6 beat NY Giants 28-27 (▼1) Struggled with Giants after manhandling Dallas.
10. Tennessee Titans 9-6 beat Washington 25-16 (–) Might have to rely on Blaine Gabbert to propel them to the postseason.
11. Seattle Seahawks 9-6 beat Kansas City 38-31 (▲2) Seattle going to the playoffs in a “rebuilding year.”
12. Dallas Cowboys 9-6 beat Tampa Bay 27-20 (–) Nice bounce-back win after getting roughed up by Colts.
13. Philadelphia Eagles 8-7 beat Houston 32-30 (▲1) Nick Foles=the ultimate (season) closer?
14. Pittsburgh Steelers 8-6-1 lost to New Orleans 31-28 (▼5) Steelers on the outside looking in with one week to play.
15. Minnesota Vikings 8-6-1 beat Detroit 27-9 (–) Kirk Cousins has been good since the loss to Seattle.
16. Cleveland Browns 7-7-1 beat Cincinnati 26-18 (–) Mayfield has been great, but really needs to get over the Hue Jackson thing.
17. Washington Redskins 7-8 lost to Tennessee 25-16 (–) Memo to D.J. Swearinger: dysfunctional franchises don’t like players who speak their minds.
18. Green Bay Packers 6-8-1 beat NY Jets 44-38 (OT) (▲1) Aaron Rodgers topped the 400-yard mark for the third time this year. Only Ryan Fitzpatrick has done it more.
19. Miami Dolphins 7-8 lost to Jacksonville 17-7 (▼1) Dolphins offense held under 200 yards for the fifth time this season — three more than ANY other NFL team.
20. Atlanta Falcons 6-9 beat Carolina 24-10 (▲3) Feasted on teams more broken than them in the last two weeks.
21. Denver Broncos 6-9 lost to Oakland 27-14 (▼1) Nice of the Broncos to roll over for the Raiders’ last-ever game in Oakland.
22. Carolina Panthers 6-9 lost to Atlanta 24-10 (▼1) Seventh straight loss has Ron Rivera on the hot seat in Charlotte.
23. New York Giants 5-10 lost to Indianapolis 28-27 (▼1) Offense returned, but couldn’t hold a lead on the Colts.
24. Tampa Bay Buccaneers 5-10 lost to Dallas 27-20 (–) Todd Monken might be sought after once the staff is blown out in Tampa.
25. Cincinnati Bengals 6-9 lost to Cleveland 26-18 (–) We’ve said it 100 times, but Marvin Lewis’ days in Cincy may be numbered.
26. Buffalo Bills 5-10 lost to New England 24-12 (–) They play hard, just don’t have enough talent.
27. San Francisco 49ers 4-11 lost to Chicago 14-9 (–) Couldn’t muster much vs. stingy Chicago defense.
28. Detroit Lions 5-10 lost to Minnesota 27-9 (–) Matthew Stafford only 425 yards over last three games.
29. Jacksonville Jaguars 5-10 beat Miami 17-7 (▲1) Blake Bortles is back…because of an injury to Cody Kessler.
30. Oakland Raiders 4-11 beat Denver 27-14 (▲1) They now are very much a team without a home — at this point.
31. New York Jets 4-11 lost to Green Bay 44-38 (OT) (▼2) Blew a 15-point second-half lead to the Packers.
32. Arizona Cardinals 3-12 lost to LA Rams 31-9 (–) One loss away from the number-one overall pick.

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