The story of the 2009 season continues to be about the two undefeated teams, and whether or not they will strive for perfection. There have been rumors that the Indianapolis Colts will begin to rest their starters in the next couple of weeks, which could hurt their chances for a 16-0 season. The New Orleans Saints, on the other hand, have vowed to take a real run at staying perfect.
But this season isn’t just about the Saints and the Colts. Teams such as the Eagles, Vikings, and Chargers have made a name for themselves, as well.
Read on to see where your team ranks in Week 14′s NFL Power Rankings:
1. Indianapolis Colts (13-0)
They’re without a doubt the best team in their conference, so really, aside from possibly breaking a record with a 19-0 season, what have they got to gain from rising their starters in the final three weeks?
2. New Orleans Saints (13-0)
They allowed an Atlanta Falcons team without Michael Turner or Matt Ryan to stick around and almost win this game. Should we still be impressed that they haven’t lost, or worried about how many times they’ve barely escaped defeat?
3. Minnesota Vikings (11-2)
Any questions about their resolve were erased with a convincing win over the Cincinnati Bengals. Is there any question that the return of Antoine Winfield changes this defense completely?
4. San Diego Chargers (10-3)
People keep doubting them, but with eight straight wins and a two game lead in their division, they have to be strong contenders for the Super Bowl. The Colts need to be ready for them.
5. Philadelphia Eagles (9-4)
They got a tough game out of the New York Giants, as they probably expected, but the better team prevailed. This offense is just as explosive as everyone hoped in the beginning of the year, and they still don’t even have Brian Westbrook back yet.
6. Green Bay Packers (9-4)
Five straight impressive victories puts the Packers a couple miracles away from stealing their division. That may be quite the reach, but there’s still no arguing the strides this team has made since getting swept by the Minnesota Vikings.
7. Cincinnati Bengals (9-4)
That suspect pass defense was really exposed against the Vikings, as Carson Palmer only managed 94 passing yards on 27 attempts. If Cedric Benson every breaks down again, this team is toast.
8. Denver Broncos (8-5)
Denver has a couple cakewalk games the next two weeks, but considering their inconsistency ever since starting the season 6-0, they’ll be lucky to get to 10-6. They can probably forget about the division.
9. Arizona Cardinals (8-5)
A week after a big win over the Vikings, they fall on their backs and commit seven turnovers. No matter who you’re facing, you can’t win when you give the ball away that much. Don’t look now, but they still have a fight to win this division.
10. New England Patriots (8-5)
The Jets and Dolphins kept pace and are both at 7-7, sitting idly by, waiting for this Patriots team to implode. With rumors swirling around that Randy Moss is quitting on the offense, that might not be too far from happening.
11. Dallas Cowboys (8-5)
Don’t blame Tony Romo for these past two losses. He’s played flawless football. Still, like it or no, the December curse lives on.
12. Miami Dolphins (7-6)
They took care of business and knocked one more team down a notch in the Wild Card race as they beat Jacksonville. Now they have to keep the ball rolling and hope the Patriots slip up.
13. Baltimore Ravens (7-6)
A complete offensive explosion in their dominant performance against the Detroit Lions is exactly what this team needed. But can they win two in a row?
14. Tennessee Titans (6-7)
Their next game against the Dolphins will decide both team’s fates. Is there any question that Chris Johnson will continue to get the rock and dominate? This guy simply cannot be stopped.
15. New York Giants (7-6)
They had a chance to make things very interesting in the NFC East with a potential three-way tie. They gave it a good run, but now they’ll likely have to win out just to steal a Wild Card spot.
16. Jacksonville Jaguars (7-6)
Let this loss against the Miami Dolphins show Jacksonville something they should have figured out for themselves: David Garrard isn’t an elite quarterback, and perhaps drafting Tim Tebow wouldn’t be a horrible idea, after all.
17. New York Jets (7-6)
Getting Mark Sanchez back clearly isn’t as big of an issue as we thought. Thomas Jones should be able to run all day against the Falcons in Week 15, and if he doesn’t, their season is likely over.
18. Houston Texans (6-7)
We finally got a taste of what this offense is capable of again. It’s been weeks since we saw Matt Schaub playing that well. But the most impressive aspect of their 34-7 win over Seattle: their stifling defense.
19. San Francisco 49ers (6-7)
That was a very impressiveve overall team performance in front of the nation. They made the Arizona Cardinals offense look like amateurs, while Frank Gore and Alex Smith simply went to work. They’re still alive for their division.
20. Pittsburgh Steelers (6-7)
Five straight losses? That doesn’t sound like the Pittsburgh Steelers we know.
21. Atlanta Falcons (6-7)
So much for Atanta being a surprise Super Bowl pick. Injuries to Matt Ryan and Michael Turner have killed this team. Now it’s all about gaining some momentum for next season.
22. Buffalo Bills (5-8)
It seems Buffalo has been winning games by simply waiting for their opponent to make more mistakes than they do. When Matt Cassel throws four picks, that’s really all you need.
23. Carolina Panthers (5-8)
The playoffs are gone, despite a solid effort against a superior New England team. The question now is, can they get to 8-8, and if they don’t, is Jon Fox gone?
24. Chicago Bears (5-8)
Wasn’t this supposed to be a Super Bowl contender? Obviously the playoffs are out of the picture. Now the attention will be on Jay Cutler, and how many interceptions he’ll end the season with.
25. Washington Redskins (4-9)
Is it just me, or is Jason Campbell actually starting to look like a half-way decent quarterback?
26. Oakland Raiders (4-9)
That was a sad performance against the Washington Redskins, showing us that the Raiders haven’t made the strides that their upset wins would have us believe. It’s back to JaMarcus Russell again. How excited are you?
27. Seattle Seahawks (5-8)
What a pitiful showing against the Houston Texans. I’m sure the Seattle faithful are still backing Matt Hasselbeck, but if he struggles to move the ball this often in a season, don’t you think the end is near?
28. Kansas City Chiefs (3-10)
Matt Cassel can’t be held completely accountable for his four interceptions, but he still didn’t have a good day. He’s been in an extreme funk overall lately, and if he doesn’t snap out of it, the Chiefs may have to consider the fact that they made a mistake in trading for him.
29. Cleveland Browns (2-11)
Did this team just turn the corner, or did they get very, very lucky? Either way, it’s about time Eric Mangini goes with his gut. Some say Josh Cribbs should play running back. I say, why not?
30. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (1-12)
Once again, Josh Freeman shows us why he’s a rookie. There’s still a lot to like about him, but this team is already lacking a ton of talent. They simply can’t afford all of his mistakes.
31. St. Louis Rams (1-12)
Hey, Kyle Boller, think you could have played better than Keith Null?
32. Detroit Lions (2-11)
First they were without Matthew Stafford, and now they lose Kevin Smith for the season. With all the injuries and loss piling up, are Detroit fans at least taking solace in the fact that they have two more wins than last year?