NFL Power Rankings, Playoff Edition: Where Each Team Ranks in the Postseason
Wild Card weekend is upon us and the regular season no longer matters.
It does not matter if you were 14-2 like the New England Patriots or 7-9 like the Seattle Seahawks because the only thing that counts is showing up in the playoffs.
We have seen teams rise and drop all year long in the power rankings and we have also seen teams stay where they belong.
Here are the power rankings for the 12 teams in the playoffs.
12: Seattle Seahawks (7-9)
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Is it possible that the 7-9 Seattle Seahawks are in the playoffs and have a home game?
Well, in the NFC West it is certainly possible.
The Seahawks became the only team in NFL history to clinch a playoff berth with a losing record.
They will be home against the Saints on Saturday and have a tough task ahead of them.
The Seahawks are going to have to bring their A-game on the offensive and defensive side of the football.
11: New York Jets (11-5)
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The New York Jets started off hot this season and were in the top five of the power rankings for a good portion of the season.
All went downhill after their miserable 45-3 loss to the New England Patriots.
The Jets have to travel to Indianapolis to take on the Colts in a rematch of last year's AFC Championship.
Both teams are much different from last season but it is going to be interesting how this game turns out.
The Colts are home giving them a slight advantage. Oh yeah, and there's that Peyton Manning guy.
10: Kansas City Chiefs (10-6)
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The Kansas City Chiefs had a surprising year and proved many critics wrong while they were doing so.
A strong running game and MVP caliber play from Matt Cassel might get them a win in the playoffs, right?
Well, the only problem is that the Baltimore Ravens stand in their way.
Granted, the Chiefs are home for this one but this game will be a difficult challenge for the young and talented Chiefs.
Cassel and Bowe are going to have to make big plays against that tough Ravens defense.
9: Indianapolis Colts (10-6)
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The Colts were 6-6 and on the verge of missing the playoffs for the first time in quite a while.
The Colts ripped off four in a row to get into the playoffs and they will play the New York Jets in the first round.
The Colts were down 17-6 to the Jets at halftime of the AFC Championship game last season, but they managed to come out on top and hold the Jets scoreless in the second half.
Both teams are completely different and it is going to be a completely different game this time around.
8: Philadelphia Eagles (10-6)
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At times, the Eagles have looked like the most dangerous team in football. Then there was Week 16 against the Minnesota Vikings.
The Vikings made the Eagles and Michael Vick uncomfortable during their 24-14 win.
Vick faces another tough task this Sunday, Packers linebacker Clay Matthews.
Matthews is going to be chasing Vick around all day so Vick must avoid turnovers and play mistake-free football as he did for most of the regular season.
7: Green Bay Packers (10-6)
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The Packers were 8-6 and on the verge of missing out on the playoffs, but they came to play when it counted.
They won two in a row to get into the playoffs which included a 45-17 win over the Giants and a Week 17 win over the Chicago Bears.
Aaron Rodgers threw for over 400 yards with four touchdowns in his first playoff appearance last year against the Cardinals but it came in a losing effort.
Rodgers would love to redeem himself against the Eagles this Sunday.
6: New Orleans Saints (11-5)
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The Saints are on a mission to get back to the Super Bowl and try to repeat.
That is going to be a difficult task having to go on the road for the majority of the postseason.
The Saints are the fourth seed and will have to travel to Seattle to take on the 7-9 Seahawks.
The Saints should have no problems taking out the Seahawks in the first round but crazier things have happened in the NFL.
5: Chicago Bears (11-5)
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Like the Chiefs, the Chicago Bears surprised some people as well this season.
Jay Cutler has cut down on the interceptions and led the Bears to a division title.
With good defense and Cutler limiting his turnovers, the Bears went 11-5 and won the NFC North.
The Bears will look to get back to the Super Bowl which they last lost to Indianapolis in Super Bowl XLI in 2007.
4: Baltimore Ravens (12-4)
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The Baltimore Ravens finished the regular season with a 12-4 record and they have to go on the road for the first round of the playoffs.
The Ravens will play the Chiefs in the first round, the No. 1 rushing offense in football.
The Ravens are tough against the run so the Chiefs will need to make plays in the passing game.
I'm sure the Ravens would love to advance and play the Steelers again, but the only way that can happen is if the Jets beat the Colts.
3: Pittsburgh Steelers (12-4)
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Winners of the AFC North, the Steelers are looking to return to the Super Bowl to win their third ring since 2006 when they defeated the Seahawks.
Despite not having Ben Roethlisberger the first four games of the season, the Steelers still managed to have a great season with a 12-4 record.
The Steelers have a first round bye and will have at least one home game this postseason.
2: Atlanta Falcons (13-3)
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After missing the playoffs last season due to many injuries, Matt Ryan and the Falcons are back in the postseason with home-field advantage.
Quarterback Matt Ryan has shown great leadership skill all season long along with Roddy White, forming one of the most dynamic duos in the NFL.
With a first round bye, the Falcons can relax this weekend and wait for their opponent.
1: New England Patriots (14-2)
After being ousted in the first round last year by the Baltimore Ravens, Tom Brady and the Patriots are determined to get back to the big stage.
With home-field advantage throughout the playoffs, the odds are with them.
The Patriots have looked like the team they were when they won three championships.
Tom Brady would love another ring after his last Super Bowl loss to the Giants.