There was finally some shakeup in the SB Nation Arizona NFL Power Rankings, but not in the top two, as the Patriots and Falcons held firm to their slots. The fun part about these rankings is that I really feel like the listing of bad teams starts with the Bucs at 15 and runs all the way through the rock bottom. It's ugly out there, folks.
The team taking the biggest leap this week was the Titans, as they jumped four spots, but it was basically only because they won, where a bunch of other teams are just flat out awful. Both the Vikings and Seahawks stepped back three spots after getting embarrassed against playoff teams. Unfortunately, one of those two teams stands a really good chance at making the playoffs themselves. Yikes.
Since I've become a little tired of the power rankings and we're sitting just days from Christmas, I've decided to make this a Christmas theme. Yup, that's happening and it's exactly as corny as you think. Possibly more.
On to the rankings. Grab your sled.
(1) New England Patriots (12-2) - Any time a guy who's in Santa Claus' weight class takes a kickoff back more than 60 yards and almost scores, your team should automatically win. (LW: 1)
(2) Atlanta Falcons (12-2) - Absolutely no Christmas miracle is required to defeat Seattle. Just a functioning football team. (LW: 2)
(3) Baltimore Ravens (10-4) - You know how some Christmas movies are absolute classics -- I'm looking at you, Miracle On 34th Street -- but they are still incredibly boring? That's the Baltimore Ravens. Beating New Orleans is an impressive win. (LW: 5)
(4) Philadelphia Eagles (10-4) - If a child ever asks you how Santa makes it to all those houses in one night, you can probably just tell them Santa's sleigh is pulled by nine Michael Vicks. (LW: 6)
(5) New Orleans Saints (10-4) - The Saints suffered a narrow road loss to the Ravens, but what's really important is that I bought my buddy one of those personalized Saints T-shirts that says "Lil Breesy." It'll be a Christmas he'll never forget. (LW: 3)
(6) Pittsburgh Steelers (10-4) - If I had to associate Ben Roethlisberger with a Christmas song it would be Baby It's Cold Outside. Listen to the lyrics and you'll figure out why. (LW: 4)
(7) New York Jets (10-4) - Something, something, something ... Rex Ryan is fat and has a belly like Santa. Bounce-back win over Pittsburgh was huge. (LW: 9)
(9) New York Giants (9-5) - You never like to see someone unemployed around the holidays, but frankly, Matt Dodge, you did it to yourself. (LW: 7)
(10) Kansas City Chiefs (9-5) - Kansas City being able to play all the teams in the NFC West is tantamount to having your name drawn by a billionaire in the office Secret Santa. (LW: 11)
(12) Green Bay Packers (8-6) - Remember how in the plot of Family Man, Nicholas Cage's character got a glimpse of his life if he'd married his college sweetheart? Cage liked what he saw and tried to fix it. Green Bay fans saw a glimpse of their team without Aaron Rodgers and unless they're into missing the playoffs, I'm assuming their reactions won't be Cage-ian. (LW: 10)
(13) Indianapolis Colts (8-6) - Peyton Manning is the Grinch and he's here to steal all the Christmas joy from Jaguars fans hoping for a division title. Odds are low that his heart will grow enough to change his mind. (LW: 15)
(14) Jacksonville Jaguars (8-6) - Can you name the other eight reindeer besides Rudolph? Of course you can't. Nobody cares about the other eight reindeer. If you haven't figured it out yet, the Jaguars are the other eight reindeer. (LW: 12)
(18) St. Louis Rams (6-8) - When the NFC West was feeling down on itself, they began to imagine how much better off the NFL would be without them and went to a bridge with intentions of jumping off. No angel stopped them and everyone lived happily ever after. (LW: 18)
(19) Tennessee Titans (6-8) - I'm beginning to think the hit song Last Christmas by Wham! is a ballad from Vince Young to coach Jeff Fisher. They almost certainly won't be together next Christmas. (LW: 23)
(21) Cleveland Browns (5-9) - Though they lost to the Bengals on Sunday, you'd be hard pressed to find a Browns fan who wouldn't prefer to see Colt McCoy out there instead of Jake Delhomme handing out "presents" to all opposing defensive backs. (LW: 21)
(22) Seattle Seahawks (6-8) - The Seahawks get lit up like a Christmas tree regularly -- Pete Carroll's angels have lost all eight of their games by 15 points or more. (LW: 19)
(24) Washington Redskins (5-9) - No matter what family dysfunction you may have coming over Christmas, it can't get worse than the relationship between Donovan McNabb and Mike Shanahan. It's so bad at this point that Rex Grossman is carving the roast beast. (LW: 24)
(25) Minnesota Vikings (5-9) - Following Bing Crosby's death, his friend Bob Hope once famously remarked that he couldn't listen to the radio around Christmas without crying. That's how I feel about watching ESPN after a Vikings game. Except it's tears of hatred. (LW: 22)
(26) San Francisco 49ers (5-9) - If you think Mike Singletary was mad about the 49ers loss to the Chargers, you can only imagine how he reacts when he receives a poor Christmas gift -- you know, if he can see you past the ridiculous sun glasses he wears even at night. (LW: 25)
(27) Detroit Lions (4-10) - Bravo to the Lions for snapping a 26-game road losing streak. The last road win for Detroit occurred on Oct. 28, 2007 -- a world before Fred Claus was unleashed on an unwilling movie-going public. (LW: 27)
(28) Buffalo Bills (4-10) - If there is a city in which I wholly believe the statistics about a rise in holiday suicides, it's Buffalo. (LW: 28)
(29) Cincinnati Bengals (3-11) - Watching Cincy win on Sunday was kind of like one of those Lifetime Christmas specials that I've watched 43 of so far this holiday season -- the production quality was incredibly poor, the performances were below average, and everything wrapped up into a nice little confusing bow at the end. (LW: 30)
(30) Arizona Cardinals (4-10) - At this point, it's easy to draw parallels between Larry Fitzgerald and Home Alone protagonist Kevin. They both went to sleep one night with a bunch of help around them and suddenly found themselves completely alone without a friend in the world. (LW: 29)
(31) Denver Broncos (3-11) - I see a lot of people telling me not to forget the reason for the season, and trust me, friends, I wouldn't dare of it. We all know this is the time to celebrate the birth of Tebow. (LW: 31)
(32) Carolina Panthers (2-12) - Beating the Cardinals on Sunday was like getting a crappy Christmas present. Sure, it's a gift, but you didn't want it and you don't need it. There's a draft at stake here, men. (LW: 32)