I didn’t know the replacement refs were back. We’ve missed them. It’s good to see them again. Even if you didn’t have a pony in last night’s race, it’s hard to say that the Patriots didn’t get the short end of the stick. In other news, the Colts continue to give me a heart attack every week, while the Cowboys had a successful week because on a bye, you just can’t lose… well unless Jerry Jones is still your owner/GM/puppeteer.
- Denver Broncos (9-1) LW (2) – They are now clearly the best team in football. The defense has had somewhat of a resurgence in the past couple of weeks and the offense continues to click on all cylinders. Now they have to do it again in 2 weeks, in KC, to lock up home field advantage, as long as they don’t slip up against the Patriots next week.
- Kansas City Chiefs (9-1) LW (1) – The first slip up on the year may be just what this team needed. They can finally get the monkey off their back and stay out of the 16-0 spotlight that could ruin a team that isn’t used to that limelight. They will have the opportunity for vengeance in two weeks and the chance to get back the division lead.
- New Orleans Saints (8-2) LW (3) – They really shouldn’t have won this game. Just because Brees looks like a boy just hitting puberty compared to NFL defensive linemen doesn’t mean that was a penalty. But still, the 49ers had their chances to stop them, but just couldn’t do it and now the Saints have a quick turnaround against the horrendous FalconsThursday night.
- Seattle Seahawks (10-1) LW (4) – Seattle, it’s so good to see you back on track. Perfect timing too as they head into the bye week with the best record in football. It’ll give Pete Carroll just what he needs; another week of preparation before the showdown for what could be the best team in the NFC.
- Carolina Panthers (7-3) LW (6) – Cam Newton to Ted Ginn for the win? This is the first time that Ginn has been relevant since the ’07 National Title game. The Panthers’ second straight win against a formidable opponent gives them now the longest win streak in football. It should continue for a couple of weeks as they have the Dolphins and that chaotic mess, followed by the Bucs.
- New England Patriots (7-3) LW (5) – So how does a ref through a flag for a clear pass interference and then call it off. Did the other refs sit him down and talk to him? “Hey, my wife and I put our house on the line for the Panthers. You can’t make that call, we’ll be screwed.” – Line judge. “Boston just won the World Series again, we can’t give this town any more titles. There was no foul.” – Head ref.
- Indianapolis Colts (7-3) LW (8) – A win is a win, no matter how ugly. That still seems to be the concept in the locker room and I’m really not a huge fan. Once considered a potential Super Bowl contender after wins over the 49ers, Seahawks, and Broncos, now I’m just praying that they are a contender for A playoff win. Lucky for them, they play in what I feel comfortable calling the new worst division in football so the division crown is almost guaranteed. Everything else won’t come as easy.
- San Francisco 49ers (6-4) LW (7) – They’ve lost to the 3 best teams in the NFC and the 4th best team in the AFC so I won’t say there is reason to ring the alarm and call for help, but this team really needs to win one of these games. Right now, the passing game is nonexistent and the defense isn’t what it was a year ago. A win versus Seattle in week 14 looks like their only shot left to prove they aren’t just a good, bad team before the playoffs roll around.
- Cincinnati Bengals (7-4) LW (10) – Dalton and the offense left some to be desired in this one, but when your defense plays as well as theirs did, it doesn’t matter. They had a blocked punt for a touchdown, forced 3 INTs, had 4 sacks, and returned a fumble for a touchdown to give them 26 fantasy points (Still bitter about that loss)! Week 14 will be crucial as the loser of the showdown versus the Colts probably determines who will be stuck playing the Chiefs/Broncos in the first round.
- Philadelphia Eagles (6-5) LW (NR) – They are one of the hottest teams in football, yet not even the hottest in their division. Sitting at 6-5 however gives them the division lead over the Cowboys and Giants and looking back at their losses, this team may be… good (pains me to say this). They’ve lost to the two best teams in football, the Chargers when they were functional, the Giants at the start of their current 4 game win streak, and the Cowboys when Jerry Jones forgot to catch the flight to Philly. The week 17 rematch who the Cowboys may just determine who’s the best in the NFC East.
- NFL Power Rankings (Week 12): Broncos, Seahawks, Saints Claim Top Spots (bloggingtheboys.com)
- NFL Week 12 Power Rankings: No more undefeated teams (revengeofthebirds.com)
- NFL Power Rankings: Evaluating the Entire League Through Week 11 (bleacherreport.com)