The NFL Power Rankings are selected by a panel of theScore’s football editors.
With eight weeks left in the season, we identify the biggest game left on every team’s schedule.
1. San Francisco 49ers (8-0)
Previous Rank: 2
Week 10 vs. Seahawks: Seattle constitutes the 49ers’ toughest opponent thus far. A win over the Seahawks would give San Fran a two-and-a-half-game cushion atop the NFC West.
2. New Orleans Saints (7-1)
Previous Rank: 3
Week 14 vs. 49ers: It’s looking increasingly likely that the winner of this one will have home-field advantage throughout the playoffs.
3. New England Patriots (8-1)
Previous Rank: 1
Week 14 vs. Chiefs: Perhaps the biggest game remaining on the AFC schedule, this one could decide the No. 1 playoff seed and home-field advantage in the conference title game.
4. Baltimore Ravens (6-2)
Previous Rank: 5
Week 13 vs. 49ers: The Ravens just won what was arguably their most important game of the season. At 6-2, they’ll need a strong finish to cement a division title and possible top seed in the playoffs. A matchup with the NFC-best 49ers will be an interesting measuring stick.
5. Seattle Seahawks (7-2)
Previous Rank: 7
Week 10 at 49ers: A win in this NFC West clash is vital to the Seahawks’ ambitions this season. After all, they don’t want to fall even further behind in the division with six games left.
6. Green Bay Packers (7-2)
Previous Rank: 4
Week 16 at Vikings: The Packers and Vikings have established themselves as the class of the NFC North this season. This Monday night matchup in Minnesota will likely have massive playoff implications.
7. Kansas City Chiefs (6-3)
Previous Rank: 8
Week 14 at Patriots: Kansas City is still alive for home-field advantage in the postseason. Beating the Patriots in Week 14 may save them from going back to Foxborough in January.
8. Houston Texans (6-3)
Previous Rank: 10
Week 12 vs. Colts: The Texans should be able to coast to their fourth division title in five years – if they take care of business against a Colts team that beat them earlier this year and usually gives them problems.
9. Minnesota Vikings (6-3)
Previous Rank: 6
Week 13 at Seahawks: The back half of the Vikings’ schedule is loaded with big-time matchups. Kirk Cousins gets a chance to change the narrative around his prime-time performances and another shot at Seattle on Monday night in Week 13.
10. Dallas Cowboys (5-3)
Previous Rank: 12
Week 16 at Eagles: Currently in the driver’s seat in the NFC East, Dallas could clinch the division – and bury its rival – by sweeping Philadelphia.
11. Buffalo Bills (6-2)
Previous Rank: 13
Week 15 at Steelers: Buffalo is unlikely to win the AFC East, but Sean McDermott’s squad is leading the wild-card race. A win at Pittsburgh would almost certainly clinch the Bills a spot.
12. Los Angeles Rams (5-3)
Previous Rank: 11
Week 14 vs. Seahawks: The Rams already lost to the Seahawks this season. The second matchup between these squads might decide who takes second place in the NFC West and a likely wild-card spot.
13. Indianapolis Colts (5-3)
Previous Rank: 9
Week 12 at Texans: The Colts won’t have a hope of winning the AFC South unless they sweep the season series against the Texans, who have Deshaun Watson playing at an MVP clip.
14. Philadelphia Eagles (5-4)
Previous Rank: 16
Week 16 vs. Cowboys: It’s been a disappointing, injury-riddled season in Philadelphia, but the Eagles’ playoff hopes will likely still rest on this rivalry game.
15. Carolina Panthers (5-3)
Previous Rank: 14
Week 15 vs. Seahawks: With the NFC South probably out of reach, Carolina could be battling Seattle for a wild card late in the year.
16. Oakland Raiders (4-4)
Previous Rank: 19
Week 10 vs. Chargers: The Raiders’ next four opponents are the Chargers, Bengals, Jets, and Chiefs. The Week 13 clash against Kansas City will be huge, but Oakland must first beat the Chargers to solidify its wild-card chances.
17. Los Angeles Chargers (4-5)
Previous Rank: 22
Week 11 vs. Chiefs: Despite a 2-5 start, the Chargers are still dreaming of a wild-card spot after two straight wins. Los Angeles has its first meeting with the Chiefs in Week 11, and a win over the current division leaders could be a defining moment entering the final month of the regular season.
18. Detroit Lions (3-4-1)
Previous Rank: 15
Week 10 at Bears: With four losses in their last five games, the Lions can ill afford to fall further behind in the playoff race. They need this win against the similarly struggling Bears.
19. Pittsburgh Steelers (4-4)
Previous Rank: 23
Week 17 at Ravens: Pittsburgh’s still in this thing. Should the Steelers keep pace these next six weeks, a potential clash with the Ravens for the division title looms in the final week of the regular season.
20. Jacksonville Jaguars (4-5)
Previous Rank: 17
Week 11 at Colts: Jacksonville can make a statement by beating Indianapolis on the road in Nick Foles’ return from injured reserve. The 4-5 Jaguars aren’t as far from a playoff spot as many believe.
21. Tennessee Titans (4-5)
Previous Rank: 18
Week 10 vs. Chiefs: If Patrick Mahomes remains out, this game suddenly becomes very winnable for the consistently inconsistent Titans, who haven’t defeated a team above .500 this season.
22. Chicago Bears (3-5)
Previous Rank: 21
Week 10 vs. Lions: Losers of four straight and facing unrelenting questions about the competency of their head coach and quarterback, the Bears are in dire need of a win to keep this season alive.
23. Arizona Cardinals (3-5-1)
Previous Rank: 20
Week 11 at 49ers: The Cardinals get another chance to see how Kyler Murray fares against one of the league’s best defensive units – and perhaps even spoil San Francisco’s amazing run.
24. Denver Broncos (3-6)
Previous Rank: 27
Week 15 at Chiefs: The Broncos travel to Kansas City in Week 15, looking to snap an eight-game losing streak that dates back to 2015 against their division rivals.
25. Cleveland Browns (2-6)
Previous Rank: 24
Week 15 at Cardinals: The only thing that could make this season more miserable would be Baker Mayfield losing to his former college backup.
26. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (2-6)
Previous Rank: 25
Week 10 vs. Cardinals: Bruce Arians is in danger of being tuned out by his players unless he can keep his ship from sinking to the bottom of the NFC South.
27. New York Giants (2-7)
Previous Rank: 26
Week 12 at Bears: Not good enough for a playoff berth but likely not bad enough to land a top-three pick, the Giants will come off their bye hoping to see significant progress from rookie Daniel Jones against a stingy Chicago defense.
28. Atlanta Falcons (1-7)
Previous Rank: 28
Week 10 at Saints: Dan Quinn may not be around for the rematch in Week 13 if his underachieving Falcons don’t get a win ASAP.
29. Washington Redskins (1-8)
Previous Rank: 29
Week 11 vs. Jets: This interconference tilt might not appear important at first glance, but the loser will likely earn a higher draft slot and the right to select the top non-quarterback prospect in April.
30. Miami Dolphins (1-7)
Previous Rank: 32
Week 16 vs. Bengals: We’ve had this game circled for months. The loser will likely hold the No. 1 overall pick in the 2020 NFL Draft. It doesn’t get more exciting.
31. New York Jets (1-7)
Previous Rank: 30
Week 14 vs. Dolphins: This AFC basement rematch will have serious draft implications and could determine Adam Gase’s future in New York.
32. Cincinnati Bengals (0-8)
Previous Rank: 31
Week 16 at Dolphins: Tua Tagovailoa and his family may make up the majority of the viewership numbers for this one.