NFL power rankings: Week 16 edition

Colin Kaepernick
Colin Kaepernick and the Niners are the hottest team in the NFL, rising to No. 2 in our rankings.
Credit: Getty Images

Seahawks march on, but 49ers are hottest team in football

1. Seahawks (12-2): Seattle is two wins away from posting the best record in franchise history. They have at least three players making strong cases for overall MVP — Richard Sherman, Earl Thomas and Marshawn Lynch — and they possess that rare blend of confidence and swagger. The only real question left, can they win a Super Bowl played outdoors in frigid New Jersey?

2. 49ers (10-4): Well, this has to suck for Jim Harbaugh, right? The 49ers, barring an epic collapse by the Seahawks, will probably be stuck with the No. 6 seed and a slate of road playoff games, despite being the hottest team in football.

3. Broncos (11-3): We all knew the blueprint for beating Denver, but San Diego executed it to perfection. Keep the ball away from Peyton Manning, as in 38:49 to 21:11 in time of possession.

4. Saints (10-4): New Orleans has bounced in and out of the Top 5 all season, rising to as high as No. 2. Still, they are 3-4 away from the Superdome and face a must-win this week in Carolina.

5. Panthers (10-4): Last week was the type of trap game Cam Newton probably loses in previous seasons. Not anymore. It is further proof this Carolina team is legit and can make a title run.

6. Chiefs (11-3): We got a good chuckle over watching Jamaal Charles shred the Raiders for five touchdowns, as he dashed the fantasy football dreams of one of our loyal readers.

7. Patriots (10-4): Sooner or later even Superman makes a mistake — remember when he turned back time to save Lois? — and Tom Brady just couldn’t overcome all the “(expletive) plays.”

8. Bengals (9-5): Cincinnati woke up in an old school house of horrors, only Pittsburgh isn’t Freddy Krueger anymore. The Bengals blew a prime opportunity to embarrass a division rival.

9. Colts (9-5): Ahh yes, Houston, the solution for all that ails you. Perhaps Indy can build off that productive first half and wake up a once-prolific offense.

10. Eagles (8-6): Chip Kelly’s worst game of the season, from the bad play-calling to the decision to go for a fourth down inside his own 30-yard line. This isn’t college, coach.

11. Cardinals (9-5): We’ve said it before and we’re saying it again: Can the NFL figure out a way to get three teams in from the NFC West? Bruce Arians’ team is exciting to watch.

12. Ravens (8-6): Keep an eye on Joe Flacco’s ankle. With that being said, is there any chance Baltimore does not make the postseason? Only if Flacco is seriously hurt.

13. Dolphins (8-6): Can we consider Joe Philbin for Coach of the Year? He’s kept this team afloat after Hazing Gate. Of course, it could be argued Hazing Gate was his fault in the first place.

14. Bears (8-6): Jay Cutler got the win, but somehow we would feel a lot more comfortable with Josh McCown under center — and something tells me Bears fans agree.

15. Chargers (7-7): Philip Rivers has been just as good as Peyton Manning this year. Dead serious. He’s on pace to shatter career highs for completions, completion percentage, passing yards and probably touchdowns.

16. Lions (7-7): When Calvin Johnson starts dropping passes on Monday Night Football, maybe it’s just not your year. Get the resume ready, Jim Schwartz.

17. Packers (7-6-1): Wednesday. Wednesday. Wednesday. That’s the day we find out if Aaron Rodgers returns to the suddenly resurgent Packers.

18. Steelers (6-8): Antonio Brown redeemed himself a week too late. It’s too bad, because the Steelers would be a scary out in the playoffs. Unfortunately for them, it’s too late.

19. Cowboys (7-7): We can count on three things: Death, taxes and Tony Romo losing in December. The quarterback is now 11-17 in the most important month of the season.

20. Rams (6-8): This is why it’s hard to cheer for a dome team. St. Louis has shown flashes this season, especially at home. On the road, they are just 2-5.

21. Titans (5-9): Tennessee is like the fat kid at the playground — always shows up, always hustles, but never wins. Give them an A for effort.

22. Jets (6-8): Does Rex Ryan keep his job? It’s really the only thing left to talk about.

23. Bills (5-9): E.J. Manuel has two more games to prove Buffalo should NOT draft another quarterback in April.

24. Giants (5-9): It looks like the single-season interception record is safe, unless Eli Manning averages 8.5 picks per game the rest of the way.

25. Vikings (4-9-1): Did the Vikes contact Penn State coach Bill O’Brien? Very, very intrigued.

Best of the worst: 26. Browns (4-10); 27. Jaguars (4-10); 28. Raiders (4-10); 29. Buccaneers (4-10); 30. Falcons (4-10); 31. Redskins (3-11); 32. Texans (2-12).



News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
Money

Are airport clubs worth the money?

We weigh the pros and cons.

Local

Man's chemically burned body found in Coney Island…

Police responding to an emergency call at a Coney Island apartment made the gruesome discovery of a man's chemically burned body in a bathtub on Saturday.

Local

NYPD detective in coma after after punch on…

An off-duty detective is in a medically induced coma Sunday after an assailant punched him the night before at a Manhattan subway station.

International

Olympic swimmer Ian Thorpe comes out as gay

In a sit-down with well-known British interviewer Sir Michael Parkinson set to air Sunday, Australian swimmer Ian Thorpe, 31, revealed he is gay after years…

Movies

Noel Clarke wants in on ‘Star Wars’

Former "Doctor Who" co-star Noel Clarke has his sights set on the "Star Wars" franchise next, and personally he likes his odds of landing a role.

Gossip

Sharon Stone knows what you're going to say…

Sharon Stone is considering getting a tattoo on her butt that says, "You wish you could get a bite of this." Find out why...

Television

Christopher Walken to play Captain Hook in NBC's…

NBC has announced that Christopher Walken will be playing Captain Hook in the network's live version of "Peter Pan."

Television

Amazon plans to post all 10 episodes of…

Amazon announced at the Television Critics Association press tour that it will post all episodes of its new dramedy "Transparent" at once in September.

NBA

Nets lose Paul Pierce to two-year deal with…

Paul Pierce is taking a gamble on joining a franchise on the rise.

NBA

GIF: LeBron James returns to Cleveland so deal…

To anyone out there who is upset about his decision, this .GIF is for you. Enjoy.

World Cup

A game of two popes: Vatican plays down…

By Philip PullellaVATICAN CITY (Reuters) - With Argentina meeting Germany in the World Cup final, the Vatican on Friday brushed aside talk of soccer rivalry…

NFL

Which Jets player has the best odds at…

Metro New York asked Bovada.LV to rank the top three contenders for the NFL MVP on the Jets.

Wellbeing

Fart gas might prevent cancer

You might not like the smell, but fart gas might help prevent cancer.

Tech

Mesh sheds light on top 10 dating deal…

What are New Yorkers' top 10 dating deal breakers? Find out here.

Wellbeing

This Week in Health: Sexual headaches can be…

Sexual headaches: an under-discussed health issue Location: U.S. Results: If getting frisky brings on a headache, you’re not alone. Headaches associated with sexual activity represent a…

Food

Start your day with free Chia Pods from…

They may have been last summer's darlings, but chia seeds have definitely not gone out of style. A great source of omega-3 fatty acids, they…