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Power Rankings Roundup: Week 13

The Chargers win! Times are good for another week!

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Another week in the books, another week of jostling for position among the NFL’s elite teams. There was some good news for the Chargers this week: The Steelers lost (showing that they might just be mortal next week). The bad news is that they lost to the Broncos, who the Chargers must face again and theoretically are still vying for a playoff spot against.

But this is the POWER RANKINGS! We don’t need to concern ourselves with playoff odds or other nuances. In fact, theoretically, the top 4 in a Power Rankings poll could indeed be the four best teams in the league, but only 3 of them would make the postseason (they would have to all be from the same division, or reaaaally deep in tiebreaker minutiae).

Let’s get to the roundup, shall we?

ESPN

1. New Orleans Saints

2. Los Angeles Rams

3. Kansas City Chiefs

4. New England Patriots

5. Los Angeles Chargers

Projected wins: 11.0 | Week 12 rank: 7

Toughest game left: Week 15 at Kansas City. While the Chargers (8-3) are solidly in the playoffs right now, they’re only a game behind Kansas City (9-2) in the AFC West standings. However, the Bolts have lost nine straight against the Chiefs. The Chargers have to figure out a way to limit turnovers and stop Kansas City’s explosive offense led by Patrick Mahomes if they want to overtake the Chiefs in the AFC West. -- Eric Williams

6. Chicago Bears

7. Pittsburgh Steelers

8. Houston Texans

9. Minnesota Vikings

10. Seattle Seahawks

NFL.com

1. New Orleans Saints

2. Los Angeles Rams

3. Kansas City Chiefs

4. New England Patriots

5. Los Angeles Chargers

Previous rank:No. 6

Listening to the Chargers’ radio broadcast of their game against the Cardinals, I heard NFL Network colleague Daniel Jeremiah say he felt like he was watching Philip Rivers put together a perfect game after never having seen one from the Padres, of whom he is a lifelong fan. Twenty seconds after Jeremiah made that comment, Rivers got hot about having to call a timeout. Rivers is the guy fans love to hate for being so demonstrative on the field ... because he cares. Next play, Rivers rolls out, takes his time, then calmly completes his 25th pass in a row for a third touchdown. Haters gonna hate, but they sure sound stupid doing it. Rivers is Canton-bound.

6. Pittsburgh Steelers

7. Chicago Bears

8. Houston Texans

9. Minnesota Vikings

10. Seattle Seahawks

SB Nation

1. New Orleans Saints

2. Los Angeles Rams

3. Kansas City Chiefs

4. Chicago Bears

5. New England Patriots

6. Los Angeles Chargers

The Chargers are one game behind the Chiefs in the AFC West and have the best record of any team not in first place in their division. Kansas City’s margin for error is very small in the final five weeks of the season, including their meeting with LA in Week 15.

7. Houston Texans

8. Pittsburgh Steelers

9. Indianapolis Colts

10. Baltimore Ravens

USA Today

1. New Orleans Saints

2. Los Angeles Rams

3. Kansas City Chiefs

4. New England Patriots

5. Los Angeles Chargers

Not sure why Melvin Gordon was still playing with Bolts up by 18, but it’s kind of move franchise averse to prosperity too often makes.

6. Pittsburgh Steelers

7. Houston Texans

8. Chicago Bears

9. Minnesota Vikings

10. Indianapolis Colts

CBS.com

1. New Orleans Saints

2. Los Angeles Rams

3. Kansas City Chiefs

4. New England Patriots

5. Chicago Bears

6. Los Angeles Chargers

They bounced back nicely this week from their loss a week ago, but now face a tough road game against the Steelers.

7. Pittsburgh Steelers

8. Houston Texans

9. Indianapolis Colts

10. Minnesota Vikings

Bleacher Report

1. New Orleans Saints

2. Los Angeles Rams

3. Kansas City Chiefs

4.New England Patriots

5. Chicago Bears

6. Los Angeles Chargers

An argument can be made to throw the Los Angeles Chargers into the mix of Super Bowl contenders in the AFC. The NFL schedule-makers couldn’t have asked for a better Thursday night showcase in Week 15, as the Chiefs attempt to complete the season sweep over the Chargers, which would lead to the AFC West crown.

However, if the Chargers find a way to level the AFC West in Week 15, the race to the finish line will be fierce, but that can only happen if Los Angeles leaves Pittsburgh with a victory in Week 13.

7. Houston Texans

8. Pittsburgh Steelers

9. Dallas Cowboys

10. Indianapolis Colts

Pro Football Focus

1. New Orleans Saints

2. Los Angeles Rams

3. Kansas City Chiefs

4. New England Patriots

5. Pittsburgh Steelers

6. Los Angeles Chargers

The Chargers are an impressive 8-3, with two of their losses against the mighty Chiefs and the Rams. Despite this, their opponent’s average PFFELO rating is the league’s second-worst (only the Bears have played an easier schedule to this point). Taking advantage of this slate, only the Saints have a higher EPA on early-down passes than the Chargers, and no team in the NFC has given up fewer than the -0.08 EPA on early-down passing plays defensively. While they have an uphill (10% chance) to win the AFC West, if their fundamentals maintain against tougher opponents, this team could make some noise come January.

7. Chicago Bears

8. Minnesota Vikings

9. Baltimore Ravens

10. Seattle Seahawks

Sports.Yahoo.com

1. New Orleans Saints

2. Los Angeles Rams

3. Kansas City Chiefs

4.New England Patriots

5. Pittsburgh Steelers

6. Chicago Bears

7. Los Angeles Chargers

(8-3, LW: 7)

Criticizing Anthony Lynn for playing Melvin Gordon with a big lead is hindsight. The problem was that Gordon shouldn’t have played at all. It might cost the Chargers a shot at the AFC West.

8. Houston Texans

9. Minnesota Vikings

10. Dallas Cowboys

Week 13 Stats:

  • Average Rating: 6.5
  • Most Common Rating: 6.0
  • Philip Rivers’ Completion %: 96.6
  • Week 12 Average Chargers win margin: 5.3
  • Week 13 Average Chargers win margin: 8.0
  • Average Holiday Season Spending Per Person: $1,007.24 (2018)

Sometimes it’s very good to overdo things. Very, very good.

-Jason “Canton Bound” Michaels