Top 5 NFL Teams After Week 12
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Top 5 NFL Teams After Week 12

I look at all of these “power rankings” in the NFL (thank goodness there’s a playoff, right?), and I scoff.  These are people whose opinions I trust, but when it comes to them trying to rank teams, I just wonder if that’s something they are just unable to do.

Or maybe I’m just cynical by nature… yeah, that’s probably it.

So here’s my Top 5 in the NFL right now.  The way I do it: who I think would be who RIGHT NOW on a neutral field.  Here we go.

5. New Orleans
I can make an argument for them in any of these five spots. At least 2 through 5. I know they’d certainly be the # 2 team on this list if they could play all of their games at home. Or even just indoors. Of the Saints’ 11 games, six have been at home in the Superdome and one other (last week @ Atlanta) was also played indoors. They’ve won all seven of those games by an average of 15 points. But in the last two weeks, they squeaked by San Francisco on their home field and then barely got by the lowly Falcons. # 5 feels right. I like the other teams ahead of them just a little better.

4. Denver
Some will look at the 3-point loss at New England and say “how do you have Denver behind New England?” It’s tough to put a whole lot of emphasis on that first half in Foxboro last week. The ball was being fumbled all over the place and I’m one of those people who thinks that, for the most part, fumbles are random, no matter how tight you might hold on to the ball. That being said, neutral field, in the playoffs, do we know what we’re going to get out of Peyton Manning against a New England or a San Francisco or a Seattle at this point in his career? I’m not sure. I know this: I’d pick any of the next three teams over Denver on a neutral field.

3. New England
The Patriots offense is getting healthy. Rob Gronkowski is back. Danny Amendola is back. Shane Vereen, potentially their third best pass-catching threat, is healthy. And when they decide they’re going to stop fumbling the football, like they did after halftime of the Sunday Night game last week against the Broncos, then they’ve got what they need there.

2. San Francisco
In their last eight games, they’ve won six of them.  In the other two, they lost to Carolina 10-9 and they lost at New Orleans 23-20.  And while Colin Kaepernick hasn’t been God’s gift to the quarterback position as much as last season, the defense has made up for it.  In five of those last eight games, the 49ers have held their opponent to 11 points or less. ELEVEN! In the almighty score-happy NFL. I wouldn’t want to play against the Niners right now.

1. Seattle
One of the few things that most of the talking heads got right at the beginning of the year is this: the Super Bowl runs through the NFC West.  And who would’ve thought we would’ve said that three years again.  That being said, I’m still not super-confident with Seattle on a neutral field.  Away from home this season, the Seahawks have lost to Indianapolis, won in OT over Houston, and won 14-9 in St. Louis.  Their invincibility they leave in Seattle sometimes, but I’m more confident in them at the moment over anyone else.

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