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Playoff Power Rankings

With the Playoffs set to kick off, TRO is here to assign its Power Rankings along the way.


The Playoffs are here, which means that there are 14 teams remaining, all in a win or go home situation. We will see 12 teams play between Saturday and Monday, while the number one overall seeds (Green Bay and Tennessee) wait to see who their opponents will be. In the meantime, TRO is here to rank each the remaining playoff teams from worst to best, factoring in their competitive edge against all of the playoff teams and their likelihood for success in their immediate matchup. Check out how the teams are ranked this week:


14) PITTSBURGH STEELERS

via Jamie Squire / Getty Images


Coming in at our lowest ranking is the team that needed the most outside help to get into the playoff picture. Mike Tomlin has this team playing at a competitive level each week, and they have a talented enough defense to ugly up games just enough to keep them competitive. However, as far as the remaining playoff teams go, the Steelers have the most issues. Ben Roethlisberger has been a shell of his former self, their offensive line has overachieved for most of the year, and while they have solid receiving options, none of them keep offensive coordinators up at night.


13) PHILADELPHIA EAGLES

via Monica Herndon / the Philadelphia Inquirer


No one expected the Eagles to be here at the beginning of the Season, or during most of the Season for that matter. A new head coach, uncertainty surrounding Jalen Hurts, and holes on the roster left this team looking to continue its rebuild. Nonetheless, their offensive line has been great, Hurts has come up clutch, they dug themselves out of an early-season hole, and the defense has overachieved. This team has 3 first round draft picks in this upcoming draft, and is on the right track. While making the playoffs was an amazing accomplishment, and they'll likely put up a respectable fight against Tampa Bay, they are simply outmatched by the bulk of the teams left.


12) LAS VEGAS RAIDERS

via RaidersWire / USA Today


Another team that has willed their way into the playoffs. Off the field issues, the firing of their head coach, and inconsistent play on the field has many wondering - who are the Las Vegas Raiders? This has been Derek Carr's most impressive year, especially from a leadership perspective, and the team has unleashed hidden gems such as Maxx Crosby and Hunter Renfrow. While they have been hot lately, they are still a hot and cold team, and they're bound to run out of steam sooner rather than later.


11) NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS

via Omar Rawlings/Getty Images


Bill Belichick has coached this team back in to relevancy, and Mac Jones has taken the reigns, doing exactly what he was drafted to do. The Patriots' defense and physical run game will keep them in most games, but the playoffs often tend to put quarterbacks in situations where the game falls on their shoulder pads, and Jones is far too likely to make too many rookie mistakes for this team to go the distance. Surely he'll learn from his mistakes and have a career of sustained success, but this year will not be their year.


10) DALLAS COWBOYS

via Tommy Gilligan / USA TODAY Sports


Who is this team? One week they're an offensive juggernaut, and the next week they are carried to victory at the hands of extra possessions provided by Micah Parsons and Trevon Diggs. This team reminds us a lot like the play of Diggs (who either will snag an interception or give up a huge play). The Cowboys are certainly talented enough to make a run, but they have underwhelmed against playoff teams thus far this season. This pattern will continue to be their Achilles heel this year.


9) TENNESSEE TITANS

via TitansWire / USA Today


It's a miraculous feat that this team was able to take the number one overall seed in the AFC despite not having Derrick Henry since Week 8. Gaining the first round bye will go a long way as this team will be on pace to get Henry back, along with other starting and rotational players. It's also worth mentioning that their defensive line has been one of the biggest surprises of the year. All that being said, this Tennessee team has a tendency to play every game close, no matter who the opponent is, and they have some troubling losses on their record this year. This pattern of behavior will catch up to them, and could even spell an early round exit in front of their home fans.


8) ARIZONA CARDINALS

via Michael Chow / Arizona Republic


The Cardinals started the Season with the best record in the NFL. They have put together some impressive stretches of play, and when they are clicking, they are certainly one of the top teams in the League. The problem is that they haven't been clicking as of late, and they have lost a major step without DeAndre Hopkins. The Cardinals have a history of falling apart late in the year. They managed to drag that out as long as possible this year, but it appears the wheels are starting to come off.


7) SAN FRANCISCO 49ERS

via Kirby Lee / USA Today Sports


The 49ers are the team this year that should be donned the last team anyone should want to see in the playoffs this year. This team reminds us a lot of that 49ers team that went to the Super Bowl a couple of years ago. They are physical, and play the best smash-mouth football out of any team on this list. This is a recipe for success at this point in the year, and Deebo Samuel and George Kittle will cause nightmares for opposing defenses. The only thing holding this team back will be the consistency of its quarterback play.


6) CINCINNATI BENGALS

via Yahoo Sports

The Bengals have the makings of a future blessed with sustained success. They have the offense capable of outshooting any team in the League. Their defense often surprises, playing above its preseason expectations, and that starts with its exceptional pass rush, complimented by the phenomenal play of Logan Wilson over the middle, and Jessie Bates in the final level. Joe Burrow has that killer instinct that can spark a post season run, and the revitalization of Joe Mixon can keep this team even-keeled. Their youth will be their only downfall, as they've had stretches of inconsistency this year.

5) LOS ANGELES RAMS

via David Berding / Getty Images


The Los Angeles Rams will go as far as Matthew Stafford can take them. This is a major, career-defining playoff series for him as he has the opportunity to silence critics questioning his ability to deliver in big games. The Rams have the defense, they have a stable of adequate running backs, and they have found a perfect use for Odell Beckham, Jr. opposite of the unstoppable Cooper Kupp. This team is loaded and poised to make a run at playing the Super Bowl in their own stadium, but can they stay out of their own way and limit the number of turnovers?


4) TAMPA BAY BUCCANEERS

via Mike Ehrmann / Getty Images


The reigning champs have looked poised to run it back until late. With the injury to Chris Godwin, the fact that Mike Evans is masking a hamstring injury, the uncertainty surrounding Leonard Fournette, and the whole Antonio Brown fiasco, Tom Brady has all of a sudden had his toys taken away from him. The Bucs have been able to mask their troubles by playing the easiest portion of their schedule in this final third of the Season, but their shortcomings are evident and will be exposed in the playoffs. However, it's not wise to bet against the GOAT, especially considering the fact that this team still has a great offensive line, a formidable defense, and playoff Rob Gronkowski. It won't be a surprise to see them in line to repeat, but they also have to be concerned about the holes that have caused them grief throughout the season.


3) KANSAS CITY CHIEFS

via ChiefsWire / USA Today


It seems like a lifetime ago that Patrick Mahomes was leading the League in interceptions, and the Chiefs looked absolutely lost. Since then, they have only won their division, clinched the number 2 seed, and reminded everyone who they are. Their defense has gotten everything back together, taking substasntial pressure off of Mahomes's shoulders. They are primed to make another run at the Lombardi, but sometimes this team appears to be missing something. Can their defense hold up? How serious is the Tyreek Hill heel injury? Do they have enough weapons outside of Hill and Kelce to get through the AFC?


2) BUFFALO BILLS

via Syndication: Democrat and Chronicle


A preseason Super Bowl favorite by many, the Bills honestly disappointed for most of the Season. They played around and took some bad losses, committed turnovers, and were flat out sloppy at times. However, in the final stretch of the Season, they have dominated their opponents, and have looked like the team that everyone expected them to be. We think that Sean McDermott will take the training wheels off of this team, fully unleashing Josh Allen. This team will be aggressive, physical, and continue its hot streak all the way to the big game. It will all start with a convincing win over the division rival Patriots, at home, in front of the Bills Mafia.


1) GREEN BAY PACKERS

via Stacy Revere / Getty Images


The NFC's number one overall seed. Except for the unusual Week 1 loss to New Orleans (in Jacksonville), the Packers have looked like the best team in football all year long. They have had convincing wins over their toughest opponents, Aaron Rodgers has looked primed to secure his second consecutive MVP award, and they appear to be the only team in the League that is getting healthier as the playoffs are nearing kickoff. They have the benefit of the first round bye to watch their future opponent and further prepare for their final run. The road to the Super Bowl will go throw the frozen tundra, as teams will travel to Lambeau Field to try to dethrone the most complete team in the League.


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