NFL Power Rankings: Playoffs

My current NFL Power Rankings for the playoffs of the 2021 NFL Season.

I’m going to use these rankings as the order for my 2022 NFL Mock Draft during the 2021 season. Follow @walterfootball.

I’ve gone from WORST to FIRST, so if you don’t see reverse numbering (via Javascript), don’t worry; the Jets and Texans aren’t my top teams.

Updated: Jan. 25

  1. New York Giants New York Giants (4-13) – Previously: 32.
    The Giants lost a miserable game in front of their frustrated fans, but hey, at least they’re not a team that gets into fights on the sideline. They’re just a team that loses to teams that get into fights on their sideline.

  2. Jacksonville Jaguars Jacksonville Jaguars (3-14) – Previously: 31.
    What a great Sunday for Jaguar fans. Not only did Trevor Lawrence play a great game for the first time in his career; the team also preserved the No. 1 pick because the Lions wanted to beat the Packer backups. Charlie predicts that the Jaguars could trade the No. 1 pick for three first-round selections in his 2022 NFL Mock Draft with trades.

  3. Carolina Panthers Carolina Panthers (5-12) – Previously: 30.
    The Panthers looked like they were going to be competitive against the Buccaneers. They didn’t even cover, losing 41-17. This is all part of the 7-year Jay-Z plan, however. Matt Rhule may look like Silkk the Shocker right now, but imagine what will become of him in five seasons!

  4. Detroit Lions NFL Power Rankings Detroit Lions (3-13-1) – Previously: 29.
    The Lions blew a chance to have the No. 1 pick, but their selection at No. 2 will be one of Kayvon Thibodeaux, Aidan Hutchinson or Kenny Pickett. They’re not in a bad spot, despite the unnecessary victory.

  5. New York Jets New York Jets (4-13) – Previously: 28.
    Zach Wilson looked good against softer defenses prior to Week 18, but we saw his struggles reemerge against the Bills. It’s insane that the Jets averaged just 1.2 yards per play. That means the Jets weren’t even guaranteed a first down if they were playing football on Beginner Mode and were faced with a seventh-and-3 situation.

  6. Houston Texans Houston Texans (4-13) – Previously: 27.
    The Texans really wanted to scare me with their stupid comeback that covered the spread in the second half. I had their under four wins, and I expected to at least get my money back with a push. Thanks to Davis Mills’ second-half heroics, my bet was nearly ruined. At any rate, Mills will return as the starter in 2022. Let’s see if the Texans find a way to protect him, which they didn’t do with Deshaun Watson or David Carr.

  7. Atlanta Falcons Atlanta Falcons (7-10) – Previously: 26.
    Overrated NFL Team: See why the Falcons are an overrated NFL team in our Overrated-Underrated page.

  8. Chicago Bears Chicago Bears (6-11) – Previously: 25.
    The Bears were winning for most of the game against Minnesota, and they even outgained the Vikings, but an overturned touchdown and a pick-six swayed the game. Can the NFL please change the stupid quarterback diving rule? If they’re diving toward the end zone, they’re not giving themselves up! Derp!

  9. Washington Redskins Washington Redskins (7-10) – Previously: 24.
    The Redskins dominated the Giants despite poor play from Taylor Heinicke. I don’t know what can be done about the Redskins’ quarterbacking situation in the offseason. The ultimate dream scenario would be for Russell Wilson to go there, but knowing the Redskins, they’ll probably overpay for Ben Roethlisberger.

  10. Denver Broncos Denver Broncos (7-10) – Previously: 23.
    Congratulations to the Broncos, who finished as the first 7-10 team in NFL history. They tried hard against the Chiefs and even outplayed them. Melvin Gordon’s lost scoop-and-score fumble was the best thing that could’ve happened to them because it helped preserve their draft status.

  11. Cleveland Browns Cleveland Browns (7-10) – Previously: 22.
    The 2021 season in a nutshell: The Browns outgained the Bengals, 376-182, and averaged 2.1 more yards per play, yet they didn’t cover the 6.5-point spread because of a fumble returned for a touchdown. I didn’t even bet the game, but there have been so many results this year that haven’t been indicative of how the games were played.

  12. Pittsburgh Steelers Pittsburgh Steelers (9-7-1) – Previously: 21.
    Overrated NFL Team: See why the Steelers are an overrated NFL team in our Overrated-Underrated page.

  13. Baltimore Ravens Baltimore Ravens (8-9) – Previously: 20.
    I guess we can stop talking about Tyler Huntley as a potential starting quarterback somewhere else next year. Huntley quite literally threw the game away against the Steelers with his two horrible interceptions. The Ravens outgained the Steelers and averaged 1.2 more yards per play, but the picks were killers.

  14. New Orleans Saints New Orleans Saints (9-8) – Previously: 19.
    I didn’t judge the Saints by their performance against the Dolphins, given that they were missing their top three quarterbacks, both tackles, the top two linebackers and other players. They were still missing lots of personnel against the Panthers, which would explain why they had trouble putting away Carolina. Getting Ryan Ramczyk back versus the Falcons was huge, as the offensive line had stability for the first time in a while.

  15. Seattle Seahawks Seattle Seahawks (7-10) – Previously: 18.
    It’s a shame for the Seahawks that the season is over because Russell Wilson finally looked 100 percent in the final two weeks of the season. Rashaad Penny, meanwhile, looked like a superstar runner. The announcers talked about how Adrian Peterson helped Penny develop, which is pretty cool. Perhaps Peterson has a future as a coach in the NFL.

  16. Minnesota Vikings Minnesota Vikings (8-9) – Previously: 17.
    Kirk Cousins was excellent in the second half against the Bears after a miserable start. Nevertheless, the Vikings need to ask themselves what they plan on doing with Cousins, who is far too expensive for what he produces.

  17. Indianapolis Colts Indianapolis Colts (9-8) – Previously: 16.
    The corpses of the Indianapolis Colts can be found at the bottom of the Jacksonville Jaguars swimming pool. The faceless players will wander the stadium on some nights, so make sure you avoid them.

  18. Philadelphia Eagles Philadelphia Eagles (9-8) – Previously: 15.
    I’ve discussed the Eagles as being overrated. They haven’t beaten a team with a winning record except the Saints, who were missing a bunch of starters in that game, and Philadelphia’s previous three wins have come against Garrett Gilbert, Jake Fromm and Taylor Heinicke. They’re not going to face that sort of competition in the playoffs.

  19. New England Patriots New England Patriots (10-7) – Previously: 11.
    Brian Flores and Sean McDermott embarrassed Mac Jones at the end of the year. The good news is that Jones won’t be a rookie next year, so perhaps he’ll have a better chance against some of the elite defensive-minded coaches.

  20. Miami Dolphins Miami Dolphins (9-8) – Previously: 14.
    The Dolphins would be a great fade in Week 19 if such a thing existed. They basically played their Super Bowl against the Patriots. Don’t forget how they were destoryed by the Titans the prior week.

  21. Los Angeles Chargers San Angeles Chargers (9-8) – Previously: 13.
    Overrated NFL Team: See why the Chargers are an overrated NFL team in our Overrated-Underrated page.

  22. Las Vegas Raiders Las Vegas Raiders (10-7) – Previously: 12.
    The Raiders can only blame themselves for the loss to Cincinnati. They had two brutal false starts, numerous holding penalties and several drops that cost them in a game in which they outgained the Bengals by 80 yards and averaged 0.4 more yards per play.

  23. Dallas Cowboys Dallas Cowboys (12-5) – Previously: 6.
    This perfectly describes Mike McCarthy’s career:

    I still can’t believe Jerry Jones made this hire. Fourteen penalties in a playoff game! And what was that quarterback draw with no timeouts remaining!?

  24. Arizona Cardinals Arizona Cardinals (11-6) – Previously: 5.
    How did Matthew Stafford have nearly quadruple the rushing yardage compared to Kyler Murray? Why did Kliff Kingsbury treat Murray like Drew Bledsoe? I don’t understand what Kingsbury was thinking. It’s like he forgot how football works.

  25. Tampa Bay Buccaneers Tampa Bay Buccaneers (13-4) – Previously: 8.
    To state the obvious, the Buccaneers really missed Chris Godwin, Antonio Brown and Tristan Wirfs in the playoff loss to the Rams. Tom Brady is going to have nightmares of Tyler Johnson dropping all of his passes while he’s asleep in his Borg recharge chamber.

  26. Tennessee Titans Tennessee Titans (12-5) – Previously: 9.
    Ryan Tannehill ruined his defense’s great effort. He’ll need to be replaced. This quarterback draft class is underwhelming, but the Titans would be better off trading for a veteran instead. Acquiring Russell Wilson would make them the favorites to win the Super Bowl next year.

  27. Cincinnati Bengals Cincinnati Bengals (10-7) – Previously: 4.
    I’ve had the Bengals listed on the underrated page for several weeks, but that can’t be the case anymore in the wake of their wins over the Titans and Chiefs. They may be in overrated territory now because the Chiefs would win their matchup against the Bengals seven or eight out of 10 times.

  28. Los Angeles Rams Los Angeles Rams (12-5) – Previously: 7.
    Overrated NFL Team: See why the Rams are an overrated NFL team in our Overrated-Underrated page.

  29. San Francisco 49ers San Francisco 49ers (10-7) – Previously: 10.
    Yet another Kyle Shanahan collapse. His decision to punt on fourth-and-2 in Los Angeles territory in the fourth quarter was puzzling, and it was also discouraging to see him stand by that decision during the post-game press conference because he’ll make the same mistake the next time he has an opportunity to do so.

  30. Green Bay Packers Green Bay Packers (14-3) – Previously: 1.
    I wonder if the feelings Aaron Rodgers had last summer will resurface. It’s insane that 219 of his 225 passing yards went to two guys. If he had Tee Higgins, Chase Claypool, Michael Pittman or Brandon Aiyuk, he wouldn’t have lost to San Francisco. The only reason he didn’t have a great second receiver at his disposal was the horrible No Cookie Jordan Love pick.

    By the way, we have a t-shirt to support Aaron Rodgers in our merch store! This is your chance to support Rodgers, who has been attacked unfairly by the scumbag media!

  31. Buffalo Bills Buffalo Bills (11-6) – Previously: 3.
    Underrated NFL Team: See why the Bills are an underrated NFL team in our Overrated-Underrated page.

  32. Kansas City Chiefs NFL Power Rankings Kansas City Chiefs (12-5) – Previously: 2.
    I can’t believe the Chiefs lost to the Bengals after beating the Bills in the manner in which they prevailed. This felt like one of the collapses Andy Reid’s Eagles used to have during the 2001-03 run.

    MVP Race:

    1. Aaron Rodgers, QB, Packers
    2. Joe Burrow, QB, Bengals
    3. Tom Brady, QB, Buccaneers
    4. Kyler Murray, QB, Cardinals
    5. T.J. Watt, DE/OLB, Steelers

    Scrubs of the Week:

    1. Aaron Rodgers, QB, Packers
    2. Alvin Kamara, RB, Saints
    3. Miles Sanders, RB, Eagles
    4. Miles Sanders, RB, Eagles
    5. Miles Sanders, RB, Eagles
    6. Chase Claypool, WR, Steelers
    7. Aaron Jones, RB, Packers
    8. Travis Kelce, TE, Chiefs
    9. Josh Allen, QB, Bills
    10. Josh Jacobs, RB, Raiders
    11. Patrick Mahomes, QB, Chiefs
    12. Cam Newton, QB, Panthers
    13. James Robinson, RB, Jaguars
    14. James Robinson, RB, Jaguars
    15. Dak Prescott, QB, Cowbys
    16. Saquon Barkley, RB, Giants
    17. Ezekiel Elliott, RB, Cowboys
    18. Kenny Golladay, WR, Giants
    19. Kyler Murray, QB, Cardinals

2024 NFL Mock Draft - April 16

NFL Power Rankings - Feb. 22

Fantasy Football Rankings - Feb. 19

NFL Picks - Feb. 12

2022 NFL Power Rankings. Week: Post-Super Bowl Power Rankings | Post-Free Agency Power Rankings | Post-NFL Draft Power Rankings | Post-Preseason Power Rankings | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17

2021 NFL Power Rankings. Week: Post-Super Bowl Power Rankings | Preseason Power Rankings | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | 18 | 19 | Playoffs |

2020 NFL Power Rankings. Week: Post-Super Bowl Power Rankings 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | Playoffs |