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NFL Power Rankings: Playoffs Edition

Only 12 NFL teams are left, and each has the same ultimate goal: winning the Super Bowl.

Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

With the seeding for the NFL playoffs set following a series of divisional games, we give you our NFL power rankings, playoff edition.

  1. Seattle Seahawks: Seattle is hot right now. Very hot. Following a shaky start to the season, the Seahawks have rebounded to become what is quite possibly the most dangerous team in the NFL. They've downed Denver, Arizona (twice), and a myriad other postseason contenders on their way to the No. 1 seed in the NFC.
  2. New England Patriots: The Patriots may have lost to the Bills on Sunday, but it wasn't a game they needed to win. What remains is the fact that the Patriots are one of the strongest all-around teams in the NFL, and Tom Brady is playing very well right now. The last two weeks lefts a few question marks, but the consistency isn't a glaring problem.
  3. Denver Broncos: The Broncos can pretty much do it all. They have Peyton Manning and a stellar pass attack, Anderson leading a strong ground game, and a defense that is ready and willing to create big plays. Although Manning has had a few off games, the big win against Oakland should be a nice warm-up for the postseason. When they get in the groove, it's hard to stop them.
  4. Green Bay Packers: Aaron Rodgers, on of the leading MVP candidates this season, proved how tough he is on the field in the last few weeks, battling a pair of injuries to win the tight NFC North race. His weapons, none more important than Eddie Lacy, complete an offensive force that will make defensive coordinators have nightmares. The defense is much improved as well.
  5. Dallas Cowboys: I had trouble not putting this team higher on the list. Tony Romo is playing lights-out, especially in the red zone - he's thrown just one interception inside opponents' 20 yard-lines this year. Add Murray and what is perhaps the best offensive line in the league and suddenly Dallas is more three-dimensional than any other Cowboys team we've seen with Romo under center.
  6. Pittsburgh Steelers: Following a convincing win over Cincinnati, the Steelers have proved they are prepped for postseason action. Ben Roethlisberger, Le'veon Bell, and Antonio Brown may be the best offensive trio in the NFL. Bengals fans know this all too well.
  7. Carolina Panthers: A 7-8-1 team ranked at No. 7 in the postseason power rankings!? Yep. Carolina is simply playing outstanding football right now. Not often do you see a team win 34-3 over a team competing for the same division title. The Panthers are an underrated team that is coming into the 2014 playoffs as hot an anyone, and that's what it's all about.
  8. Detroit Lions: The Lions may have lost the close NFC North race, but that doesn't mean they're not a team to be wary of. Detroit boasts a lot of offensive weapons, but they're defense has been uncharacteristically good - all around. Even away from Ford Field as a Wildcard, playing the Lions will be a very tough game.
  9. Indianapolis Colts: The Colts got off to a slow start, got hot, then kind of fizzled out a little towards the end, exposing a few issues that the team needs to address. Andrew Luck hasn't been the quarterback we're used to seeing, and that could prove problematic for a team that relies on their pass attack so much.
  10. Cincinnati Bengals: The Bengals are typically ranked on the lower end of the playoff spectrum, it seems. Unfortunately, the postseason is coming with unlucky circumstances for this team in 2014. Tons of injuries, an inconsistent passing game, and a pass rush with issues of its own should have Bengals fan worried.
  11. Baltimore Ravens: The Ravens haven't been on top of their game recently, though they got the win and some help when it counted most. Joe Flacco has proved average this year, but we all know what happens to the man when the playoffs start. They can be as dangerous as anyone, but until they come out of the gate playing like it, we'll hold them down here for the moment.
  12. Arizona Cardinals: This team has battled adversity year-in, year-out. At one point, Arizona was considered one of the top two teams in the NFL. But, injuries, especially at quarterback, have hindered the team's chances and what they can do in the playoffs. A limited play-calling ability will likely affect the team in the postseason, though the defense has the ability to carry the football game.