NFL Energy Rankings Week 17

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NFL Power Rankings Week 17

7:00 ET

  • NFL nationESPN

After a week of regular season play, it's time for the NFL Power Rankings to look to the future. After a 2020 unlike anything we've ever seen and full of challenges (on and off the field), we look forward to (hopefully) better times in 2021.

Our NFL Nation writers take the lead from there, offering New Year's resolutions for the teams they cover. How we rank in our Power Rankings: Our Power Panel – a group of more than 80 writers, editors and TV personalities – rates how the teams stack up throughout the season.

Previous ranking: 16 | 15 | 14 | 13 | 12 | 11 | 10 | 9 | 8 | 7 | 6 | 5 | 4 | 3 | 2 | Preseason

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ARI | ATL | BAL | BUF | AUTO | CHI | CIN
CLE | DAL | DEN | DET | GB | HOU | IND
JAX | KC | LV | LAC | LAR | MIA | MINIMUM
NE | NO | NYG | NYJ | PHI | PIT | SF
SEA | TB | TEN | WSH

Ranking of the 16th week: 1

New year resolution: Have a different rookie crop like the 2020 one

The Chiefs will stay in great shape if, like this year, they can continue to fill with young talent. Draft picks L & # 39; Jarius Sneed, Willie Gay, Clyde Edwards-Helaire and Mike Danna, as well as uncovered rookies Tershawn Wharton and Tommy Townsend look like players who will be part of things in Kansas City for a while. – Adam Teicher

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Domonique Foxworth is confident the Chiefs will become Super Bowl champions again this season, but doesn't think it will be easy.

Ranking of the 16th week: 3

New year resolution: Make sure Aaron Rodgers stays at Green Bay

A divorce from Rodgers-Packers seems inevitable and could have been hastened by the election of Jordan Love, but regardless of whether they reach and / or win the Super Bowl this year, they will need to maintain the partnership for at least another seasons or two. For one, Love is by no means ready to step in and perform, as Rodgers did when he took over for Brett Favre after a three-year tenure. Then there is Rodgers & # 39; MVP level. Some may trade him now while his stocks are still rising, but he still has a lot to offer this team. – Rob Demovsky

Ranking of the 16th week: 2

New year resolution: Make yourself comfortable with a target on your back

The Bills are a tough team that has a solution – they do almost everything well as the regular season rounds off. But after AFC East's first win in 25 years, it will be difficult to play the underdog card Buffalo has played a lot over the past two seasons. As soon as the calendar turns, expectations of the bills increase. You need to be just as comfortable with a target on your back as you would with a chip on your shoulders. – Marcel Louis-Jacques

Ranking of the 16th week: 4th

New year resolution: End her 10 season Super Bowl drought

The Saints have a lot of worries in 2021, like tackling some daunting wage cap issues and potentially choosing a new quarterback. But first, they want to get back to the big game while Drew Brees and that loaded collection of talent are still intact as they near the eleven-year anniversary of beating the Colts in Super Bowl XLIV. – Mike Triplet

Ranking of the 16th week: 6th

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New year resolution: Restructure big money contracts

NFL teams, they're just like us. We both have to deal with budgeting – especially to start a new year. The Steelers will be in that boat as contracts like those of Ben Roethlisberger, Stephon Tuitt, Joe Haden and Steven Nelson swallow up large chunks of the cap, making it nearly impossible to re-sign most of the 19 upcoming free agents – and that goes with that not to give OLB TJ Watt a well-deserved mega-deal. The Steelers will have to put some magic into the checkbook to set up a team even a little like the one that started 11-0 this year or they'll be starting over with a 39-year-old quarterback. – Brooke Pryor

Ranking of the 16th week: 7th

New year resolution: Get a # 1 recipient

A proven # 1 recipient for Lamar Jackson is the missing part of the Ravens' offense. Last off-season, the Cardinals traded for DeAndre Hopkins for quarterback Kyler Murray and the Bills for Stefon Diggs for QB Josh Allen. Baltimore has to get just as aggressive if Jackson is to take the next step as a passerby. Marquise "Hollywood" Brown was too inconsistent to be trusted to be a No. 1 recipient. He finished 428 in the NFL with 728 yards. – Jamison Hensley

Ranking of the 16th week: 8th

New year resolution: Fill in everything that got into defense

After scoring just three field goals in their NFC West win on Sunday, the Rams' defense of the Seahawks has scored the top 13.7 points per game in the league for the past six weeks. That's less than half the average of 28.8 in the first 10 weeks, the third highest in the league. The Seahawks would look to the NFC's number 1 if they played this type of defense from the start. They need to continue their turnaround to get into the playoffs at Aaron Rodgers & # 39; Packers or Drew Brees & # 39; Saints coming over. – Brady Henderson

Ranking of the 16th week: 11

• Power Rankings: resolution for each team
• Who will win NFC East in week 17?
• John Wolford? Who is Rams' new starting QB?
• Mahomes has work to do even when he is seated
• Seahawks' turnaround for the title of the D keys

New year resolution: Win their first playoff game since the 2002 season

The last time the Bucs were in the postseason was in 2007, when they lost in the wildcard round at home to eventual Super Bowl champion New York Giants. But the last time they actually won a postseason game was their 48:21 win over the then-Oakland Raiders in Super Bowl XXXVII after the 2002 season. So it took a long time, and this time they have the six-time Super Bowl – Quarterback Tom Brady to lead them. – Jenna Laine

Ranking of the 16th week: 5

New year resolution: Find a groundbreaking pass rusher

The Titans must explore absolutely every possible option in order to find a pass rusher that can ruin enemy crimes. You should add multiple pass rushers through the draft and the free agency. Adding a top-notch free agent pass rusher is costly and would likely lead the team to make some difficult decisions regarding other positions. Given that Tennessee is the last to be dead in the NFL with just 15 sacks, something needs to be done to find a way to pressure quarterbacks and sack offenses or tackles for a loss. – Turron Davenport

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Dan Orlovsky insists that the Browns' season be successful even if they fail the postseason because the team of Kevin Stefanski and Baker Mayfield established their future.

Ranking of the 16th week: 9

New year resolution: Upgrade the defense

Over the past off-season, the Browns focused on consolidating their offensive and better supporting QB Baker Mayfield. They did so by signing TE Austin Hooper and RT Jack Conklin before designing LT Jedrick Wills Jr. in the first round. Now Cleveland must turn to the other side of the ball for a defense that only ranks 20th in efficiency despite Star Pass rusher Myles Garrett. The Browns need help at all levels, but especially in secondary school. – Jake Trotter

Ranking of the 16th week: 10

New year resolution: Find a left device

Anthony Castonzo has started all 144 games he has appeared in since joining the NFL in 2011. But he's now 32, plans to retire last off-season, plans to play his season after season and has missed three games this season due to injury. The Colts can't sit back and wait for Castonzo – they must find the next person to protect their quarterback's blind side. – Mike Wells

Ranking of the 16th week: 12

New year resolution: Add more explosive playmakers to help out Tua Tagovailoa

The Dolphins spent the 2020 off-season finding their QB in Tagovailoa and dumping them into the trenches to help build a playoff team. The biggest remaining weakness could be the lack of playful receivers and running backs who can separate from defenders while they play in the open field. With two picks for the first and second rounds, including an expected top 5 pick over Houston, the Dolphins have the resources to secure multiple upgrades here. – Cameron Wolfe

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Dan Orlovsky explains why Tua Tagovailoa should start for the Dolphins against Ryan Fitzpatrick in Week 17.

Ranking of the 16th week: 13

New year resolution: Play consistently on the offensive

Rams head coach Sean McVay doesn't have to reinvent the wheel as a playcaller and quarterback Jared Goff doesn't have to be a superstar, but together they must find a solution to the wild disagreements that have plagued the offense since a 13-3 loss to the New England Patriots in the Super Bowl LIII. Since 2019, Goff has led the NFL with 38 turnovers and McVay has yet to find answers to a crime that has no rhythm. Goff needs to become a better game manager, and McVay needs to position his quarterback to be successful. – Lindsey Thiry

Ranking of the 16th week: 14th

New year resolution: Play more consistently

Regardless of how it ends, the Cardinals 2020 season will be defined by how the team played after the farewell (3-5 so far) compared to the success before the farewell (5-2). And because Arizona lost four out of five games immediately after saying goodbye, including three in a row – and without the hail Murray would have lost five in a row – the Cardinals are in a fight for their playoff life. Next season the Cardinals need to find more consistency or they may face the same season that may not end well for Kliff Kingsbury. – Josh Weinfuss

Ranking of the 16th week: 17th

All you need this week:
• Full schedule »| Ranking list »
• Depth maps for each team »
• Transactions »| Injuries »
• Ranking of the Football Power Index »
More NFL coverage »

New year resolution: Commit to running at the start of the season

The bears waited too long to run back to David Montgomery's sophomore year. Montgomery didn't touch football nearly enough during the six losses in Chicago but caught fire last month. Montgomery became the first bear to score a touchdown in five consecutive games since Neal Anderson in 1991. The previous third-round selection from the state of Iowa has gone over 95 yards in four of their last five games. There's nothing wrong with Montgomery. It took the bears a long time to realize that. – Jeff Dickerson

Ranking of the 16th week: 20th

New year resolution: Get in and stay (relatively) healthy

Forget luck and success, these will come for the 49ers if they can get the first part of the Trifecta away. The Niners' bad luck this season was one of the worst the NFL has ever seen. And while they did their best not to use it as an excuse, they never stood a great chance of defending their NFC crown as most of their best players have spent the season with reserves injured. Even with a lot of tough decisions waiting for this off-season – including the quarterback – this team has enough talent to get back into the competition right away if it has made significant health improvements in 2021. – Nick Wagoner

Ranking of the 16th week: 18th

New year resolution: Commit to using star receivers

The Vikings can absolutely be a run-first team if they want to continue this philosophy through 2021. It would probably be helpful if they were less predictable, e.g. B. running less in second place, and one way to do that is to prioritize an increase in usage for Justin Jefferson and Adam Thielen. Minnesota has two star wideouts that should approach double-digit goals in every game and that they can rely on in critical situations such as: B. for two-minute drives and when supporting the team when they play from behind. – Courtney Cronin

Ranking of the 16th week: 16

This is what the postseason bracket looks like at the moment and what scenarios are ahead of us.
• Playoff picture (ESPN +) »
• Playoff machine: see scenarios »
• Ranking list »| Football Power Index »

New year resolution: Don't be 6-4 after 10 games

Yes, we know the Raiders need a closer defense after epic choke jobs against the Chargers and Dolphins, as well as a defense coordinator who can make chicken salad if you know what we mean. You could also get better offensive in the red zone instead of settling for 18 field goals from 20 to 29 meters. But being 6-4 has been the Raiders' fatal blow for the last two seasons. They lost five of their last six in 2019 and will have done the same disgraceful feat this season with a loss in Denver. – Paul Gutierrez

Ranking of the 16th week: 21st

New year resolution: Figure out how to finish

Sixteen one-ball losses in two seasons is way too many. It's up to the chargers to find the determination to end the tight games with Ws instead of Ls, to keep leads instead of wasting them. Is it a tough O-lineman, a reliable kicker, a tough D-lineman? Whatever it is, do something to help franchise quarterback Justin Herbert. Herbert took them to three consecutive winning rides in as many weeks in December, but the chargers need to carry that over to 2021. – Shelley Smith

Ranking of the 16th week: 19th

New year resolution: Allocate more resources to WRs and TEs

With all of the talk of the quarterback game – and this is undoubtedly a big problem – it doesn't matter who throws the soccer ball if the Patriots don't improve their staff and general philosophical approach to acquire / develop and widespread receivers tight ends. In the past two seasons in a post-Gronk world, no team in the NFL has received fewer pass shortages than New England. It's like a black hole on the offensive. – Mike Reiss

Ranking of the 16th week: 15th

New year resolution: Correct the QB position

This would be number 1 before Dwayne Haskins Jr. was released, so his fall doesn't change anything. In Washington, 30 players have started quarterback since the 1993 season, and that's the main reason the franchise can't consistently win. This division is very profitable; The right quarterback would put Washington in a great position. Alex Smith will turn 37 next season, and while he's a great story, it's hard to say that for 16 games he can still be an effective starter. Washington must explore all avenues – business dealings, a free agent signing, or the draft. Combining a mid-round pick with a veteran is probably ideal – that gives the team someone who can take advantage of top defense and a young player to groom themselves. – John Keim

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Ryan Clark refuses to decide which team will win NFC East, but Rex Ryan chooses the Washington Football team decisively.

Ranking of the 16th week: 26th

New year resolution: Make a defense

OK, maybe after Dak Prescott's long-term signing, but make sure the defense has the knack for running the program Mike McCarthy wants to run, whether Mike Nolan is the coordinator again or someone new. If a CeeDee Lamb-type offensive player falls on him again in the first round, discuss it, but this draft and the off-season must be on defense. The cowboys have great needs at all three levels, but especially in secondary school. – Todd Archer

Ranking of the 16th week: 22nd

New year resolution: Finally getting the offensive line right

This should be Dave Gettleman's number one priority – the pig mollies. We are here three years later. The line is only slightly better. Nick Gates looks solid in the middle, Shane Lemieux and Matt Peart have potential, but Andrew Thomas needs to develop into a high-end duel for the left. His beginner year was not particularly promising. It's time the giants got it right. – Jordan Raanan

Ranking of the 16th week: 28

New year resolution: Win close games

You've heard this before, but the Panthers are 0-8 in games where they had the ball in their last possession and had a chance to win or tie. Win half of that and you are spot on in the playoff mix. Coach Matt Rhule wants to build a robust, persistent team. If you get over the hill in these games, you can turn things upside down. – David Newton

Ranking of the 16th week: 27

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New year resolution: Get the setup right

Atlanta needs a new coach and general manager; Because it fired Dan Quinn early, owner Arthur Blank was able to jump on potential candidates. The Falcons have shown life under interim manager Raheem Morris, but regardless of who they hire, they'll need to restore that team's confidence in the second half. Atlanta prevailed in the first half with 67 points against the opponents and was fifth in the NFL. However, the Falcons were outperformed in the second half with 68 points, the third worst advantage in the league. Atlanta clearly has some parts in place, but there's a reason it went 2-8 in games decided by touchdown or less. – John Keim

Ranking of the 16th week: 23

New year resolution: Pick a quarterback

The Eagles tried to have their cake and eat it too by picking the interesting prospect Jalen Hurts in the second round while they were already committed to Carson Wentz. The controversy that followed proved exactly why you don't. While both might be most attractive financially and from a flexibility standpoint, that would put Philadelphia on a path that leads to exactly where it is. Pick a quarterback, move on, and learn from your mistakes. – Tim McManus

Ranking of the 16th week: 24

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New year resolution: Get (and stay) healthy

People often say that when you are in good health, you have it all. Well, the Broncos would surely love to see if this can be true in 2021. The Broncos have four defensive starters – including Von Miller for the entire season – their No. 1 receiver (Courtland Sutton) for all but two games and lost two-time 1000-yard rusher Phillip Lindsay. At one point, the Broncos lost four corners to an injury in fifth in two weeks – A.J. Bouye – was suspended for violating the league's PED policy. Throw in a game the Broncos had to play without a squad quarterback due to COVID-19 protocols and it was a season unlike any other Vic Fangio has seen in the NFL in more than three decades. – Jeff Legwold

Ranking of the 16th week: 29

New year resolution: Find a stable line of scrimmage

Providing quarterback Joe Burrow with a solid and consistent offensive line is the team's top priority this off-season. The Bengals learned the cost of the shaky O-line game when Burrow sustained a knee injury at the end of the season that ended a promising rookie year. Cincinnati has used 10 different starting combinations on the line this season. Part of it was dictated by injury, but part of it is also due to the inability to find the right combination. Cincinnati should be in the market for potential upgrades if it is to protect its franchise quarterback in 2021. – Ben baby

Ranking of the 16th week: 30th

New year resolution: Find the right general manager and head coach for Deshaun Watson

This should be the unique goal for Texans as they interview business executives and head coaches now and in the New Year. Watson took a step forward in 2020 and had the best numbers of his career despite losing DeAndre Hopkins in a trade in the off-season. He then lost Will Fuller V during the season through a six-game suspension. The Texans' 4-11 record doesn't reflect how well Watson played, and the Houston hires must reflect the best to not only continue Watson's growth but also to build the right team around him. – Sarah Barshop

Ranking of the 16th week: 25th

By talking to former players, coaches and key figures, Peyton Manning pinpoints the history of football and its cultural implications. Watch on ESPN +

New year resolution: Get the GM / head coaching settings right

Lions are once again facing a major organizational change. A new general manager and head coach is expected to be hired in early 2021. Without a division title since 1993 and without a playoff win since the 1991 season and with questions in literally every position other than making sure Detroit finally finds the right head coach and general manager pairing is imperative. The Lions have spoken to at least a large number of candidates for the general manager hiring process, a better sign of a larger process than the team hiring Bob Quinn. – Michael Rothstein

Ranking of the 16th week: 31

New year resolution: Hire a dynamic coach who can get the entire organization going

For too long, the Jets have been obsessed with hiring so-called offensive and defensive gurus as head coaches. The current coach, Adam Gase, has not made much guru and is expected to be fired. He should be succeeded by someone who can lead the entire team – a CEO type, if you will. There is a leadership gap in the organization and it takes a strong personality to create a successful culture. It doesn't matter whether it is an offensive, defensive or special team coach. – Rich Cimini

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Ryan Clark claims that Clemson quarterback Trevor Lawrence will miss out on the chance for instant fame after the Jets win their way out of the No. 1 election.

Ranking of the 16th week: 32

New year resolution: Make the right settings

Sounds straightforward and simple, but the jaguars haven't done this very often in their history, which goes a big part in helping them be 1-14 and anchored in the # 1 selection (which isn't a bad thing in that regard for example because Trevor Lawrence). The Jaguars have seven picks in the first four rounds, including four in the first two, and they need to pin down those early picks to turn things around. Taking Lawrence is easy, but he alone won't make this franchise a competitor next year. We saw what not having the right employees has to do with this franchise. So owner Shad Khan has to make the right decisions or he will face another lost decade. – Mike DiRocco