Statsational Power Rankings Week 13

By | December 5, 2012

Despite some losses by the top teams we have no movement in the top 5 rankings.  At this time of year it takes more than one loss to significantly move a team in the rankings.
Denver keeps the top spot but comes back to the pack just a little bit.  While continuing to win they have not been as impressive their last two games as they were in prior weeks.  So we now see the top 3 teams all within .7 points of each other.

The AFC North surpasses the NFC South and NFC East.  No longer do we have every NFC division ahead of all the AFC divisions.  A big help to the AFC North has been the play of Cincinnati and also Cleveland.  Cincinnati has moved from the bottom portion of the rankings up to 12th now.  The defense has played great as of late.  In their last 4 they have not given up more than 13 points.  Now they only played one good offense, the NY Giants, in that stretch but nonetheless it has been an impressive run.  They get a Dallas offense this week that is ranked 10th and has been hot.  Dallas has scored 71 points in its last two games.

Indianapolis remains the most overrated team in the league.  Their record is far better than it should be.  A lot of that has to do with Luck being very good at the end of games.  But they have played a very weak schedule, the weakest in the league so far.  In a division that is not very strong they have yet to play the only team worth anything the Houston Texans.  They have two left with Houston, Tennessee this week and Kansas City.  With Houston possibly clinching a 1 seed by week 17 that final game may be meaningless to Houston.  So the Colts are potentially favorites in 3 of the last 4 games.  They should make the playoffs but as our rankings show they are not much better than Cleveland.

Game of the Week
Houston @ New England -3.5

There is no doubt about the best matchup this week.  Houston comes into Foxboro on Monday night with a ton on the line.  A Houston win will all but clinch a 1 seed but a New England win puts them a game back of the Texans with a head to head win.  That leaves Houston no room to slip in their upcoming games against Indy twice and the Vikings.  New England comes in the best offense on my rankings by far.  They are 4.5 points better than Denver in second place.  The Pats can pass it as we all know but this season they are ranked 7th in rushing.  That is making this offense very dangerous.  But Houston can move the ball as well.  Houston ranks 6th in offense, 9th in rushing and 14th in passing.  But against New England’s poor defense expect Houston to move it better than usual.  New England is 25th in defense.  The models have both teams around 400 total yards for the game.  No doubt the line is tight and New England gets a slight edge for the home field.  Weather can always be a factor when a team in a warm climate comes north, especially for a prime time game when it figures to be a bit colder.  Forecast is for temps in the low 40’s with rain.

Worst Game of the Week
NY Jets @ Jacksonville Jaguars +2.5

The Jaguars have shown glimpses of good things but they have been few and far between.  They have a firm grasp on the bottom spot in the rankings, 2 points worse than anyone else.  At home they are averaging a 17 point loss.  The Jets come in the game 5-7 and 7-6 winner over Arizona last week.  The Jets were awful on offense but somehow Arizona was much worse gaining just 137 total yards.  The Jets will go back to Mark Sanchez after benching him in the second half last week.  Sanchez has responded well in the past to having his job in jeopardy.  The Jets had Mark Brunell take snaps with the first team last season and after that Sanchez and the Jets scored 28, 34 and 37 in successive weeks.

Biggest Mismatch
Denver @ Oakland +10

Denver is our top ranked team while Oakland is next to last.  Sometimes you can throw that out when divisional rivals meet.  We saw that with Kansas City almost upsetting Denver a couple weeks ago.  Denver is 5th in defense, and 2nd in offense.  Giving Manning a defense this strong is scary for the rest of the league.  Their earlier losses can be chalked up to a team getting to know its QB.  A few mistakes led to short fields and defensive scores.  That is not happening now.  Oakland is one dimensional.  They are 29th in rushing but 7th in passing.   Defensively they are not good.  Ranked 25th in passing defense is a scary proposition against this offense.  Denver is predicted to put up 429 yards of total offense, 302 of that in the air.

Rank Teams Power Rating
1 Denver 29.09
2 San Francisco 28.73
3 New England 28.40
4 Houston 26.56
5 NY Giants 25.46
6 Chicago 24.63
7 Atlanta 24.29
8 Seattle 24.21
9 Pittsburgh 24.14
10 Green Bay 23.45
11 Baltimore 23.04
12 Cincinnati 22.66
13 Detroit 22.61
14 Dallas 22.43
15 Washington 22.17
16 Tampa Bay 21.70
17 San Diego 20.47
18 Minnesota 20.26
19 St. Louis 20.17
20 New Orleans 20.07
21 Carolina 19.97
22 NY Jets 19.34
23 Indianapolis 18.47
24 Cleveland 18.45
25 Miami 18.38
26 Arizona 18.28
27 Buffalo 18.06
28 Philadelphia 17.89
29 Tennessee 16.22
30 Kansas City 15.28
31 Oakland 14.37
32 Jacksonville 12.35
Rank Teams Strength Of Schedule
1 St. Louis 23.10
2 NY Jets 22.68
3 Carolina 22.41
4 Seattle 22.22
5 NY Giants 22.18
6 Dallas 22.10
7 Washington 22.04
8 Arizona 21.95
9 Philadelphia 21.95
10 Green Bay 21.82
11 New Orleans 21.81
12 Tennessee 21.74
13 Denver 21.53
14 Kansas City 21.53
15 San Francisco 21.39
16 Minnesota 21.29
17 Chicago 21.29
18 Tampa Bay 21.15
19 Baltimore 21.10
20 Detroit 21.10
21 Cleveland 21.06
22 Jacksonville 21.03
23 Oakland 20.83
24 San Diego 20.79
25 Buffalo 20.74
26 Pittsburgh 20.58
27 Miami 20.51
28 New England 20.22
29 Atlanta 20.15
30 Cincinnati 20.14
31 Houston 19.64
32 Indianapolis 19.54
NFC East 21.99 W L
NY Giants 25.46 7 5
Dallas 22.43 6 6
Washington 22.17 6 6
Philadelphia 17.89 3 9
NFC North 22.74 W L
Chicago 24.63 8 4
Green Bay 23.45 8 4
Detroit 22.61 4 8
Minnesota 20.26 6 6
NFC South 21.51 W L
Atlanta 24.29 11 1
Tampa Bay 21.70 6 6
New Orleans 20.07 5 7
Carolina 19.97 3 9
NFC West 22.85 W L
San Francisco 28.73 8 3
Seattle 24.21 7 5
St. Louis 20.17 5 6
Arizona 18.28 4 8
AFC East 21.05 W L
New England 28.40 9 3
NY Jets 19.34 5 7
Miami 18.38 5 7
Buffalo 18.06 5 7
AFC North 22.07 W L
Pittsburgh 24.14 7 5
Baltimore 23.04 9 3
Cincinnati 22.66 7 5
Cleveland 18.45 4 8
AFC South 18.40 W L
Houston 26.56 11 1
Indianapolis 18.47 8 4
Tennessee 16.22 4 8
Jacksonville 12.35 2 10
AFC West 19.80 W L
Denver 29.09 9 3
San Diego 20.47 4 8
Kansas City 15.28 2 10
Oakland 14.37 3 9

It has been a great run for the Statsational model.  Over a 4 week span the model has gone 34-10-2 including 9-2-2 last week.

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