Playoff Power Rankings: Packers, Rams, Chiefs | NFL Playoffs
It's Divisional Round playoffs time with just eight team remaining in this year's post season. Here's a look at our Power Raknigs after the first round.
The NFL regular season was chalked full of thrilling finishes and overtime winners, but the Wild Card Round of the playoffs was quite the contrary. Last weekend was loaded with blow out victories with four of the six games in the first round decided by more than two touchdowns. Just one road team survived the first week of the post season. That was the San Francisco 49ers who knocked off the Dallas Cowboys in Arlington. All the other favorites are on to the Divisional Round as the top seeds in each respective conference join the party this weekend. Here are the Power Rankings for the eight teams remaining in the playoffs.
1) Green Bay Packers 13-4, 1 last week
The Pack had a much deserved bye week after finishing the regular season with the best record in the league. They were also were the best team in the NFL for 17 of the 18 Weeks of the season. Since the Week 1 blowout loss to the Saints, Aaron Rodgers and Green Bay have been nearly perfect. Remember of the three losses they suffered after Week 1, Rodgers played the entire game in just one. The loss came at the hands of the Minnesota Vikings in a 34-31 contest in U.S. Bank Stadium. Rodgers didn’t play in the loss to the Chiefs because of COVID, and played limited time in loss to the Lions on the final week of the season. Not to mention all of those losses came on the road, something that the Packers won’t have to worry about with home field throughout.
2) Los Angeles Rams 12-5, 2 last week
The Rams may have lost their final game of the regular season to a desperate division rival needing a win to get into the playoffs, but that shouldn’t count against them too much. They lost out on the two seed with the defeat to the Niners, which means the will have to travel to Tampa Bay next weekend. But since a mid season slump, Sean McVay’s team has been playing better than almost any team in the league, and the mid season signings the front office made are paying dividends as the season progresses. Matthew Stafford got the monkey off his back winning his first ever playoff game, and now will have to knock off the GOAT in Tampa Bay if he wants to get the Rams to the conference championship.
3) Kansas City Chiefs 12-5, 5 last week
There are few people around the league that wouldn’t agree that the Chiefs are the best team in the AFC. Sure they may have lost to the Bengals in the penultimate week of the season to let home field slip through their grasp, but Patrick Mahomes won’t be too bothered by that. KC is a team that can win in any field in the league, and they will get at least one more game at Arrowhead after blowing out the Steelers in the Wild Card Round. The Bills roll in to town next week, for a rematch of last year’s AFC Championship.
4) Tampa Bay Buccaneers 12-5, 2 last week
It was business as usual for the Bucs who made light work of the Philadelphia Eagles in the first round of the playoffs. The good news for Bucs fans is Tom Brady is Tom Brady. The bad news for the Bucs is their receiving core has been decimated with the departure of Antonio Brown and the Chris Godwin injury. Arians improvised a game plan to top the Eagles last week, and the Bucs handled their business especially in the first three quarters where they lead 31-0. With all due respect to Philly the Rams are a different beast.
5) Tennessee Titans 12-5, 3 last week
The Titians have to be one of the most doubted one seeds in recent history. The fact that they clinched the one seed in the AFC without their mid season MVP candidate, and best running back in the league shows this team is more than just Derrick Henry. It wasn’t always pretty, and there were some losses that made you scratch your head, like against the Texans and the Jets. But their record against some of the top teams in the league is quite respectable. They have already beat the Bills and the Chiefs this year, and will be hoping to get another crack at one of those teams, but will have to handle the very dangerous looking Cincinnati Bengals this week.
6) Buffalo Bills 11-6, 8 last week
The Bills made the Patriots look like the New England team that started the season 2-4, all the while reminding everyone around the NFL why they came into the regular season as one of the favorites to win the Super Bowl this year. Josh Allen flirted with perfection at Highmark Stadium on Saturday night, going 21/25 and throwing for five touchdown. The run game went for nearly 170 yards against the Pats stingy defense, and if they are firing on all cylinders like they were against New England it’s going to be tough for any team to beat them. Bill vs. Chiefs is going to be can’t miss TV on Sunday Night.
7) Cincinnati Bengals 10-7, 7 last week
One thing is for sure. The Bengals are the most exciting team to watch in the playoffs. Their potency on the offensive side of the ball is unmatched. Burrow and Chase look like one of the best QB/WR duos in the league. The big question for the Bengals is how will this inexperienced team fair the deeper they go in the playoffs? Let’s not forget that Burrow is in his first full season under center for Cincy. He’s been in big games before, and he has shown that he is playoff ready, but is he and the rest of the Bengals ready to make a run to the conference title game with a win on the road against the Titans this weekend?
8) San Francisco 49ers 10-7, 9 last week
The Niners continue to defy the odds. Who would have had this team in the playoffs after they started the season 2-4 with the questions at the quarterback that were surrounding Kyle Shannahan? They have had an extra “playoff game” in a sense, considering they had to win against the Rams on the final week of the season. They took care of business in Sofi Stadium in Week 18 and then went on the road were the only underdog to go away from home and win in the Wild Card round. The task only gets tougher from here on out for the Niners. They have to go in to Lambeau and knock off the best team in the league. With what we have seen over the last few weeks I wouldn’t put anything past Jimmy G and the Niners.