First and 10: Monday afternoon NFL power rankings

November 21, 2011|By Matt Vensel

Because doing a full, 32-team list of power rankings is too much work for a Monday afternoon, I will rank the top 11 teams in the NFL after each exciting football Sunday (that's where the "first and 10" comes in).

Here's the balance of power heading into Monday night's Week 11 finale between the Patriots and Chiefs:

1. Packers: Green Bay is so good, they are toying with opponents. DT B.J. Raji had a one-yard TD on Sunday.

2. 49ers: If Ray Lewis is out Thanksgiving night, too, Frank Gore and the 49ers might run all over the Ravens.

3. Saints: Fun fact -- Roman Harper, a safety, has 6.5 sacks this season. That’s more than Terrell Suggs has.

4. Patriots: The Patriots might pick off Chiefs QB Tyler Palko four times in his first NFL start on Monday night.

5. Ravens: After taking care of business against a pretty good Bengals team, they move back into my top five.

6. Steelers: The Steelers are getting healthier. LaMarr Woodley could return next week after this week’s bye.

7. Texans: Now that Matt Leinart is the starter after Matt Schaub’s injury, they might not be here for long.

8. Bears: They won their fifth straight game on Sunday, but Jay Cutler is out indefinitely with a busted thumb.

9. Cowboys: Tony Romo has eight touchdowns and no interceptions in his past three games -- all Dallas wins.

10. Raiders: The Raiders lead the AFC West by a game. But can they hold off Tim Tebow and the Broncos?

11. Falcons: Tony Gonzalez has seven touchdowns in 10 games. So much for the old man falling off a cliff.

Biggest rise (not on the list): The Dolphins, who refused to suck for Luck and have won three in a row.

Biggest fall (not on the list): The Buccaneers, who have lost four in a row to drop out of the playoff picture.

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