Updated NFL power rankings: Philadelphia Eagles still flying high after Week 16
Updated: Mar 16
A fairly calm Week 16 has concluded in the 2022-23 NFL season, as eight of the nine teams with the best records in the league all won. Below are the teams that sit atop the latest NFL power rankings.
1. Philadelphia Eagles (13-2)
With Gardner Minshew at the helm filling in for an injured Jalen Hurts on Saturday, the Philadelphia Eagles made enough plays on offense to escape AT&T Stadium with a win. Minshew threw for 355 yards with two interceptions and added three total touchdowns, as Philly scored 34 points (including a 42-yard interception return for a touchdown by Josh Sweat). That point total wasn’t enough to secure the win, though, as Dallas put 40 points on the scoreboard, the most the Eagles have allowed this season. It’s unclear whether Hurts (sprained shoulder) will play on New Year’s Day against the New Orleans Saints, but the Eagles remain at the top of the rankings for at least another week.
2. Cincinnati Bengals (11-4)
With seven minutes remaining in the third quarter of the Bengals’ contest against the Patriots on Saturday, Cincinnati led 22-0 and New England was punting for the sixth time in seven drives. To that point, the only drive that the Patriots hadn’t punted on was ended by the onset of halftime. It looked like the Bengals were primed to cruise to an easy win in Foxborough, but the Patriots had other plans. New England rallied and trailed 22-18 with just under a minute remaining in the game, but a catastrophic mistake ultimately cost Bill Belichick’s bunch. Driving for the potential game-winning score and set up with a first-and-goal from the 5-yard line with 55 seconds to play, Patriots running back Rhamondre Stevenson fumbled the game away into the clutches of Bengals defensive tackle B.J. Hill. It was the first time Stevenson fumbled this season, and Cincinnati narrowly avoided a calamitous loss. The Bengals have yet to clinch the AFC North and are still in contention for the No. 1 seed in the AFC. Their quest to accomplish both of those goals begins on Jan. 2 against Buffalo.
3. Kansas City Chiefs (12-3)
It’s becoming increasingly difficult to not take Patrick Mahomes and the Kansas City Chiefs for granted. The Chiefs breezed past a slumping Seattle Seahawks team by a score of 24-10 on Saturday at Arrowhead, keeping pace with Buffalo in hopes of securing the top seed in the AFC. Many of us have come to expect the Chiefs to win most of their games and Mahomes to look spectacular in doing so. Mahomes wasn’t otherworldly against the Seahawks, throwing for 224 yards and zero interceptions with three total touchdowns, but Kansas City’s defense carried the day by keeping Seattle’s offense out of the end zone until 2:25 remained in the fourth quarter. The ho-hum Chiefs will host the Denver Broncos on New Year’s Day, when they’ll be expected to come away with another victory. Yawn.
4. San Francisco 49ers (11-4)
The San Francisco 49ers secured their eighth straight win with a convincing 37-20 victory over the Washington Commanders on Saturday at Levi’s Stadium. Rookie quarterback Brock Purdy has played well since relieving an injured Jimmy Garoppolo of the starting quarterback duties in Week 13, while San Francisco has won their last four games by an average of 17 points. Much of the 49ers’ success can also be attributed to its stout defense, which allows the fewest points per game (15.3) in the league.
5. Buffalo Bills (12-3)
The Buffalo Bills won their sixth straight game with a 35-13 victory over the Chicago Bears on Saturday. If the Bills win their final two regular season games, they’ll clinch the No. 1 seed in the AFC and a bye in the first round of the playoffs. Buffalo will travel to Cincinnati for a monumental matchup with the Bengals in Week 17.