NFL Power Rankings Week 16: Focus on the Dallas Cowboys

Rob BeloteSenior Analyst IDecember 22, 2010

The only thing I like about the Cowboys
The only thing I like about the CowboysRonald Martinez/Getty Images

Doing power rankings are tough, but because of the limited number of games on the NFL schedule, it's one of the only ways to get an idea for which teams are better besides just looking at their records. 

At my site——I do a weekly power ranking of all 32 NFL teams.  It's a hugely subjective process in which I account for a team's strength of schedule, margin of victory, good wins and bad losses.

So where do the Dallas Cowboys currently rank?

I don't have to tell anybody that the first half of the season went really poorly for the Cowboys.  Thankfully for Dallas fans, I don't compile the GuysNation NFL Power Rankings based solely on overall win-loss record and, quite frankly, there are some things they can be proud of, especially lately.

Beating the Giants on the road was a very good statement and should be inspiring.  Jason Garrett proved he was deserving of the head coaching position with that win.

Beating Detroit isn't such a huge deal, but at this point, Dallas needs all the wins it can get.

Hanging tough against the defending Super Bowl Champion New Orleans Saints was a considerably inspiring battle for the Cowboys, who came within three.  It was a home game for Dallas, so you expected the Cowboys to at least fare well, though I don't think many people expected a victory.  Close only counts in horseshoes and hand grenades, but I definitely take it into account in the GuysNation Power Rankings.  Not nearly as good as a victory, but close losses can certainly add up.

Although the Indianapolis Colts don't look as good as they have in previous seasons, a road victory over them is a very big deal for the Cowboys and it's something to be proud of.

Last week's loss to Philly, by only three points, should've been a very inspiring game for Cowboys fans, as the Eagles look like they could be viable contenders to win the Super Bowl and Dallas had a shot to beat them with Jon Kitna at QB!  It took a 200+ yard receiving night from DeSean Jackson and a huge touchdown reception from him to even have the three-point victory.  Hang your hats on that, Dallas fans.

In Week 15, as a Washington Redskins fan, I'm sad to have to admit, but the Cowboys defeated their division rivals to even the season series.   Don't get too excited, Dallas fans, because you're supposed to win your division home games and you're supposed to do it by more than three points, without letting your rivals make a huge comeback to tie it up late in the game. Especially, when your rivals are starting their second best quarterback to see what he's capable of doing next year!  Still, a win is a win and while I had the Redskins ranked one spot above the Cowboys last week, both teams are on the move.

So how did I take that string of games into account when determining where to rank the Dallas Cowboys?

For the complete rankings and analysis, check out the article on my website,!  Unlike Power Rankings you see elsewhere, your comments could help persuade me to rank your team better after Week 16!

You also will probably enjoy voicing your opinion through voting in nearly a dozen polls set up to help get people's feedback on the Power Rankings!

You also might like the dueling NFL Week 15 picks article on, a new(ish) feature where the games on a given week's NFL schedule are debated amongst myself and another author on my site (who just happens to be a LIFE LONG PHILADELPHIA EAGLES FAN, so you KNOW he's got a high opinion of his opinion!). The Week 16 picks article is coming soon, but you could probably have some fun at the expense of some NFC East fans by making fun of how they fared last week, with hindsight being 20-20.  There's also plenty more to enjoy on, so give it a look!