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The finish line is coming up fast

Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports

Two more weeks to go in the NFL season. What teams are moving up the Power Rankings, and what teams are looking at a sorry finish? Let’s take a look at where all 32 teams stand as we ahead to Week 17…

32. New York Giants (4-11, lost to Philadelphia Eagles)

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The game was tied at 3 at halftime. In the next 20 minutes of game time, the Giants were outscored 31-3. They allowed a big man TD reception and threw a pick-six. The hilarity of reports Joe Judge being back in 2022 has a glaring caveat: if there is a new GM, that person could have a different opinion. Next: at Chicago Bears

31. Jacksonville Jaguars (2-13, lost to New York Jets)

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Trevor Lawrence threw for 280 yards against Zach Wilson, who had 102. However, the Jets’ rookie QB had the spectacular run, and the Jaguars continue to lose. Next: at New England Patriots

30. Carolina Panthers (5-10, lost to Tampa Bay Buccaneers)

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That two-quarterback scheme went awry for Matt Rhule much in the way the season has gone since a 3-0 start. Next: at New Orleans Saints

29. Detroit Lions (2-12-1, lost to Atlanta Falcons)

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Not an awful performance, but the Lions took a tumble. There was a huge excuse as Jared Goff did not play. Nothing to poke fun at is the way Dan Campbell’s bunch always plays hard. Next: at Seattle Seahawks

28. New York Jets (4-11, defeated Jacksonville Jaguars)

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What Zach Wilson didn’t do with his arm, he did with his legs. A bit of trickery got a touchdown and the Jets fell another game back of the Jaguars in the battle for draft position. Sometimes you lose when you win. Next: vs. Tampa Bay Buccaneers

27. Houston Texans (4-11, defeated Los Angeles Chargers)

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Rex Burkhead had an enormous game with 149 rushing yards, and Davis Mills was solid as the Texans destroyed the Chargers. This was a stunning result because the Chargers still have a lot to play for in 2021. Next: at San Francisco 49ers

26. Washington Football Team (6-9, lost to Dallas Cowboys)

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The WFT was embarrassed by the Dallas Cowboys—and a couple of its players embarrassed the team on the sidelines. Next: vs. Philadelphia Eagles

25. Seattle Seahawks (5-10, lost to Chicago Bears)

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So, who is going to be back next year? Pete Carroll? Russell Wilson? Neither? Both? Next: vs. Detroit Lions

24. Minnesota Vikings (7-8, lost to Los Angeles Rams)

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The Vikings made Matthew Stafford look like he was back with the Detroit Lions, picking off three passes. And they still found a way to fall far enough behind not to be able to catch up. Same ol’ song and dance. Next: at Green Bay Packers

23. Atlanta Falcons (7-8, defeated Detroit Lions)

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There is no one who can digest the fact the Falcons are 7-8. They have done this quietly, taking advantage of every bad team they have faced. Someone will be salivating if this team slips into a wild-card spot. Next: at Buffalo Bills

22. Chicago Bears (5-10, defeated Seattle Seahawks)

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Matt Nagy found the answer to his quarterback woes: Nick Foles. The Bears won a thriller in a game that meant nothing. Next: vs. New York Giants

21. Denver Broncos (7-8, lost to Las Vegas Raiders)

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The Broncos needed to down the Raiders and came up short. Drew Lock isn’t the answer. Teddy Bridgewater is oft-injured. What is going to be the solution for Denver going forward … as in future seasons? Next: at Los Angeles Chargers

20. Los Angeles Chargers (8-7, lost to Houston Texans)

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Old habits are proving hard to break. Yes, the Chargers had some COVID-19 issues but there is no way to explain getting lit for 41 points by the Houston Texans. This loss had nothing to do with Brandon Staley and analytics. Next: vs. Denver Broncos

19. Las Vegas Raiders (8-7, defeated Denver Broncos)

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The Raiders remain in the wild-card hunt. That’s an indictment of every other team in the AFC. Next: at Indianapolis Colts

18. Cleveland Browns (7-8, lost to Green Bay Packers)


Baker Mayfield threw four interceptions and the Cleveland Browns still almost upended the Green Bay Packers. Time to beat up on the quarterback. The final one came when the officials missed an obvious penalty. No matter how you shake it, this is a disappointing season in Cleveland. Next: at Pittsburgh Steelers (Monday Night Football)

17. Philadelphia Eagles (8-7, defeated New York Giants)

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Tale of two games. How did the Eagles fail to score anything more than a field goal in the first half against the Giants? And what woke them up at halftime? Whatever it was, Philly needs to play that way for 60 minutes, not 30. Next: at Washington Football Team

16. New Orleans Saints (7-8, lost to Miami Dolphins)

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The Saints’ defense should sue for non-support. Twenty-two players were out overall and the defense still played a fine game. Ian Book was over his head (as expected). Next: vs. Carolina Panthers

15. Pittsburgh Steelers (7-7-1, lost to Kansas City Chiefs)

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A dismal effort against a Chiefs team that had COVID-19 issues all week. The Steelers were the ones who looked ill. Next: vs. Cleveland Browns (Monday Night Football)

14. San Francisco 49ers (8-7, lost to Tennessee Titans)

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The Niners got out fast against Tennessee and let victory slip from their grasp. This team doesn’t have wiggle room to lose games like these… if it wants to reach the postseason. Next: vs. Houston Texans

13. Miami Dolphins (8-7, defeated New Orleans Saints)

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Tua Tagovailoa and the Miami Dolphins got a belated holiday gift against a Saints team that had zero offense. The Dolphins’ offense wasn’t great, but it did what it had to do for win No. 7 in a row. Making the streak reach eight won’t be as easy. Next: at Tennessee Titans

12. Baltimore Ravens (8-7, lost to Cincinnati Bengals)

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The Ravens’ secondary was shorthanded and Joe Burrow showed them no sympathy. Josh Johnson had a 300-yard game for his second team this season (Jets were the other), but the Ravens need Lamar Jackson or Tyler Huntley to get healthy, quickly. Next: vs. Los Angeles Rams

11. Arizona Cardinals (10-5, lost to Indianapolis Colts)

Rob Schumacher-Arizona Republic

Talk about spinning in the wrong direction as the season comes to a conclusion. The Colts were undermanned and depleted, yet went into the desert and dusted Arizona. The hot seat awaits Kliff Kingsbury, and deservedly so. Next: vs. Dallas Cowboys

10. Tennessee Titans (10-5, defeated San Francisco 49ers)

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Welcome back, A.J. Brown. Now if only Derrick Henry could get healthy. The Titans rallied to down the Niners and picked up a big win in the AFC South race. Those hoofsteps they hear are the raging Indianapolis Colts. Next: vs. Miami Dolphins

9. Cincinnati Bengals (9-6, defeated Baltimore Ravens)

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In two games against the Ravens in 2021, Joe Burrow threw for 941 yards and 7 touchdowns. Wow. Now, a major test awaits… Next: vs. Kansas City Chiefs

8. New England Patriots (9-6, lost to Buffalo Bills)

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Mac Jones threw a pair of picks and suddenly the Patriots are looking up in the AFC East. Next: vs. Jacksonville Jaguars

7. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (11-4. defeated Carolina Panthers)

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No Chris Godwin. No Mike Evans. No Leonard Fournette. No problem with the weak Carolina Panthers. Next: vs. New York Jets

6. Buffalo Bills (9-6, defeated New England Patriots)

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The past two weeks have changed the picture in the AFC East, and the Buffalo Bills got a great game from Josh Allen in squaring things with the Patriots. Next: vs. Atlanta Falcons

5. Los Angeles Rams (11-4, defeated Minnesota Vikings)

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Good teams deliver when their quarterbacks are having a bad day. That is exactly what the Rams did for Matthew Stafford, who threw 3 picks in the win. Next: at Baltimore Ravens

4. Indianapolis Colts (9-6, defeated Arizona Cardinals)

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The Colts had every reason to go out and throw in a stinker. Shorthanded on offense and defense, and all they did was take down a 10-win Arizona team on the road. Frank Reich has done a remarkable job turning a bad situation around in 2021. Next: vs. Las Vegas Raiders

3. Dallas Cowboys (11-4, defeated Washington Football Team)

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The Cowboys stomped the WFT. Dak Prescott looked in classic form. Will they finish strong and be able to maintain the No. 2 position in the NFC? Next: vs. Arizona Cardinals

2. Green Bay Packers (12-3, defeated Cleveland Browns)

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Things got a bit dicey against the Browns late, but the Green Bay Packers found a way to win … again. Aaron Rodgers is the franchise’s all-time leader in touchdown passes. Matt LaFleur is one of the top hires in years. A team that should make a deep playoff run, especially if it maintains the home-field advantage in the NFC. Next: vs. Minnesota Vikings

1. Kansas City Chiefs (11-4, defeated Pittsburgh Steelers)

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The Chiefs battled COVID-19 issues all week. And then they battered the Steelers. They appear to be lengths better than anyone in the AFC. Next: at Cincinnati Bengals