Vendetta Sports Media December 2022 NFL Power Rankings
Welcome to the final month edition of the 2022 NFL Power Rankings here at Vendetta Sports Media. The turnout for these entries was somewhat disappointing as only Alex and I are giving our input today, so expect some surprising results here. Overall this was a fun ride and we have a clear view of who the best teams in the NFL are this season.
32. Houston Texans (Everyone has them 32, no change)
The sadness continues for Houston, as they are near locks to receive the number one overall pick and enjoy Bryce Young for their troubles. They have started and finished at the bottom of our rankings, as a result of this, this is easily the team we had the best read on throughout our 2022 NFL Power Rankings.
31. Carolina Panthers (Scott 29, Alex 31. Average: 30. Change: -1)
The Panthers drop down a total of one spot as we enter December. They have cut Baker Mayfield and it might be the Sam Darnold show here. Overall it has been an incredibly disappointing season, and a lot of work needs to be done.
30. Los Angeles Rams (Scott 30, Alex 29. Average: 29.5. Change: -16)
Injuries to the stars on the Rams and seeing their depth have to play every snap in games is what caused them to absolutely plummet down these rankings. Stafford is likely out for the year, Cooper Kupp is on injured reserve, and what could go wrong did go wrong for the Rams. Things have gotten so bad they claimed Baker Mayfield off waivers and may be relying on him now.
29. Chicago Bears (Scott 31, Alex 28. Average: 29.5. No Change)
Although Justin Fields has been playing out of his mind lately, the Chicago Bears have absolutely nothing on defense. To put it simply, they cannot hold up and the offense is forced to get into shootouts. They are currently second last in the standings, and should clearly have their sights on the offseason and surrounding Justin Fields with talent.
28. Denver Broncos (Scott 26, Alex 24. Average: 25. Change: -3)
Not much is going right here in Denver, and it doesn’t seem like that will change any time soon. They continue to struggle and lose while holding the Ravens to ten points! It is truly remarkable how bad this offense is, and how good this defense is. I really feel for those defenders because they are playing their hearts out.
27. Atlanta Falcons (Scott 27, Alex 23. Average: 25. Change: -6)
The Falcons feel like a team without direction. Thankfully, they are finally starting Desmond Ridder. You have to see what you have in the rookie because we know what Marcus Mariota is and what he can do for your team. Start the rookie who was not far off from Pickett in some draft evaluations, and see if you have anything to build one. They can still take a quarterback if they so desire.
26. Jacksonville Jaguars (Scott 23, Alex 26. Average: 24.5. Change: -2)
The Falcons are clearly lacking an outside threat. They will get that in Calvin Ridley once he, hopefully, returns next season. I do like what I have seen from Lawrence in terms of growth on a throw to throw basis, but the tackle situation can be better to help him out. I am incredibly surprised he is relatively okay after a scary hit last week.
25. New Orleans Saints (Scott 24, Alex 25. Average: 24.5. Change: -2)
I may be in the minority here but I think that Andy Dalton has actually been playing some really good football this year and is one of the main reasons why the Saints have not bottomed out completely yet. Unfortunately they have an old roster that is only getting older, do not have their first round pick because of Trevor Penning, and will need help on defense very soon. Their salary cap strategies have turned the cap into a credit card and they keep paying off the bill but that has to end eventually right?
24. Indianapolis Colts (Scott 28, Alex 20. Average: 24. Change: +3)
The Colts have seen improvement from their offensive line and Matt Ryan for the most part since the Jeff Saturday hire, but make no mistake about it they are still a bad team. They have a lot of pieces but it just is not meshing well. Shaq Leonard’s injuries have been problematic this year, Nelson has not been that dominant guard across the entire season and everything else is performing below expectation as a whole.
23. New England Patriots (Scott 15, Alex 30. Average: 22.5. Change: -3)
This offense has been brutal and it is time to call the Matt Patricia offensive coordinator experiment a failure.
22. Arizona Cardinals (Scott 25, Alex 19. Average: 22. Change: -4)
The Cardinals are the victims of dysfunction. Their head coach and general manager pairing is not one capable of winning a Super Bowl. They lack impactful youth on the team outside of Kyler Murray, and overall it has been a disappointment internally but and actually worse than I expected having ranked them 20th to begin the season. They need some youthful playmakers because JJ Watt is getting older, their offensive line needs help and their wide receivers outside of Hopkins need improvement too.
21. Pittsburgh Steelers (Scott 22, Alex 21. Average: 21.5. Change: +5)
The Steelers are an ascending team. This defense is playing to an improved level with TJ Watt returning, and Pickett has been improving consistently. The offense has been playing much better out of the bye week, and here’s hoping the team can continue to improve with the amount of youth on this roster.
20. Cleveland Browns (Scott 20, Alex 22. Average: 21. Change: -4)
Watson’s return was disappointing. Not a single offensive touchdown was scored and they needed the defense and special teams to step up against the league-worst Houston Texas. The defense needs help up front and at the middle linebacker position, and they are lacking the picks to do so.
19. Detroit Lions (Scott 14, Alex 27. Average: 20.5. Change: +12)
The Lions are one of the hottest teams in football, and have been playing great football recently. They are part of the playoff bubble and have an offense that has been playing very well around Jared Goff. They are favourites over the 10-2 Minnesota Vikings, but I need to see more from Jared Goff.
18. New York Giants (Scott 19, Alex 16. Average: 17.5. Change: -7)
The Giants are regressing back towards my initial expectations for team. Daniel Jones simply is not the answer, and tying with the Commanders is a rough look, and there simply is not a lot to love on the field. Andrew Thomas is having a great year, Evan Neal has been fine but the offensive line needs work. Their defensive line is fantastic and that defense overall has a lot to be happy about. Daboll needs to get his own guy at quarterback to really work his magic.
17. New York Jets (Scott 16, Alex 18. Average: 17. Change: +2)
Mike White baby. He makes the easy stuff look easy, which is more than Zach Wilson has done this season. The Jets might be looking for a new quarterback this offseason which is a massive blemish on Joe Douglas’ career.
16. Washington Commanders (Scott 18, Alex 15. Average: 16.5. Change: +12)
The largest change in this edition of our 2022 NFL Power Rankings has the Washington Commanders skyrocketing up the rankings. Taylor Heinicke baby. He is not really that good, but he is very well liked and is giving the playmakers a chance.
15. Las Vegas Raiders (Scott 21, Alex 12. Average: 16.5. Change: +7)
“I almost gave up on them. But then I remembered I’m Chickster that irrationally supports his team. Although I will say the 3 wins in a row helped me get back on track. The Raiders are clicking finally and look ready to roll. However, that would have been nicer earlier in the season. The Raiders have to run the table if they still want to make my 10-7 prediction. There’s hope, always, Darren Waller and Hunter Renfrow are coming off IR, offense is figuring it out, the defense isn’t…the worst. The Raiders close with Stafford less Rams, the lost Patriots, struggling with Matt Canada as OC Steelers offense, now Jimmy G-less 49ers, and hopefully resting their starters Chiefs. It looks bleak but the raiders fans always believe.” – Alex’s thoughts on the Raiders
14. Green Bay Packers (Scott: 17, Alex: 13. Average: 15. Change: +3)
The Green Bay Packers are showing some life with the emergence of Christian Watson, it seems they have finally found their go-to guy this season, but it might have been too little too late. Aaron Rodgers still has it physically, but between injuries and an underperforming defense Green Bay has struggled greatly.
13. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (Scott 9, Alex 17. Average: 13. Change: +2)
The Buccaneers are raising mostly because of other teams falling. The team looks lost, there is no form of aggressiveness and it is clear that they have regressed greatly in terms of coaching.
12. Los Angeles Chargers (Scott 11, Alex 14. Average: 12.5. Change: +1)
The Chargers have plenty of talent, but they are still an unserious contender. Herbert is a fantastic quarterback, but that team has been brutalized with injuries and I am not very confident in their coaching staff.
11. Baltimore Ravens (Scott 12, Alex 10. Average: 11. Change: -4)
The Lamar Jackson injury hurts, but my concerns are with this defense. The Ravens have a -31 point differential in the fourth quarter this season and have allowed 108 fourth quarter points. John Harbaugh has to figure it out, and with Jackson hopefully returning in a couple of weeks the Ravens can set themselves up for the playoffs.
10. Seattle Seahawks (Scott 13, Alex 9. Average: 11. Change: +2)
Geno Smith is legit, but this defense will be holding them back from a championship. This offense is the why people are optimistic. A great pair of wide receivers, and a pair of rookie tackles who are holding their own in the league.
9. Tennessee Titans (Scott 10, Alex 11: 10.5. Change: +1)
We know who the Titans are at this point. They are a solid team with a good offense but not a great one, a good defense but not elite, and are incredibly well coached. That has done them a lot of good and will continue doing them a lot of good. However, it will hold them back from being truly great.
8. Dallas Cowboys (Scott 6, Alex 8. Average: 7. Change: None)
Dallas is figuring it all out. Their offense looks unbeatable, Tony Pollard proves I was right, and they are playing like a conference championship caliber team. Now we need to see if Mike McCarthy can not mess this up.
7. Minnesota Vikings (Scott 5, Alex 7. Average: 6. Change: -1)
My opinion on the Vikings has not changed drastically, but I really love how Kirk Cousins is playing. He’s taking more chances, he’s giving Justin Jefferson opportunities and this team is really damn good around him. If there’s a year for the Vikings to win the Super Bowl, this would be it.
6. Miami Dolphins (Scott 7, Alex 5. Average: 6. Change: -2)
Tua has been playing great football recently, it’s just other teams have been better in my eyes. The coaching is fantastic, and Tua is playing to his strengths with decision making, accuracy and anticipation. Then Hill and Waddle will kill you with speed after the catch.
5. San Francisco 49ers (Scott 8, Alex 4. Average: 6. Change: None)
Losing Jimmy Garoppolo stinks, but he may be back in the playoffs! This is still an elite roster across the board. Playmakers, coaching, defense, it is incredibly difficult to find a flaw outside of the fact that Brock Purdy is playing quarterback for this team.
4. Cincinnati Bengals (Scott 2, Alex 6. Average: 4. Change: +4)
The Bengals are the best team in the AFC for my money. Joe Burrow is playing at an elite level after rough start to the year, they have an elite group of playmakers, a solid offensive line, and a very good defense. They are a dangerous team and will be battle tested going into the playoffs.
3. Kansas City Chiefs (Scott 4, Alex 2. Average: 3. Change: -1)
The Chiefs are still a great team with Andy Reid and Patrick Mahomes. That offense will produce no matter what, but the Bengals just have their number. Overall, they are still a great team with a very good offensive line but those tackles are problematic. The defense is well coached but lacks real star power.
2. Philadelphia Eagles (Scott 1, Alex 3. Average: 2. Change: +1)
The Eagles have the best team in the league, they are well coached and the Jalen Hurts improvement is here to stay. His connection with AJ Brown is setting the league on fire. They are deep on the defensive line which was a key part of their Super Bowl run a few years ago. They are the best team in the NFC and for my money the best team in the NFL
1. Buffalo Bills (Scott 3, Alex 1. Average: 2. Change: None)
Losing Von Miller for the year is a brutal blow. The team just has not been playing as well as they could be and the starts with Josh Allen consistently putting the ball in harms way. He started out hot to start the year, but over the past few weeks he’s cooled down and without that added presence of Miller, I don’t see how this team is better but they still claim the top spot in our 2022 NFL Power Rankings.
That wraps up our December 2022 NFL Power Rankings. Who do you agree or disagree with? Are we too low on a certain team? Let us know on Twitter.