2009 NFL Power Rankings: Week 13 | Total Pro Sports
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2009 NFL Power Rankings: Week 13

by: AnthonyP On  Tuesday, December 8, 2009
Tags:  2009   Afc   Football   Nfc   NFL   Power Rankings  

Oakland RaidersWhat happened to good old fashioned running of the football? Week 13 of the 2009 NFL season saw just a single running back receiver over 30 carries (Cedric Benson) and shockingly, utilising that talent won Cincinnati their matchup. Why do Jaksonville refuse to use MJD until the fourth? Why isn’t the hottest player in the NFL given the ball in the redzone Jeff Fisher? When you have a dynamic weapon in Adrian Peterson, why does a 14 point defecit warrent a total abandonment of what’s made you great?

Rewind 7 years to week 13 of the 2002 season and the story is different:

  • 3 players saw over 30 carries (LT, Travis Henry and San Fran’s Garrison Hearst), just Cedric Benson saw 30+ in 2009.
  • 17 players were given 20+ carries, whilst in 2009 just 12 offensive coordinators can claim to have employed the same tactic with their star runner.
  • Only Joseph Addai and Knowshon Moreno saw redzone induced multiple touchdown work, whilst in 2002 4 players ran for 2 TDs, whilst LT and Hearst went one better with 3.

Running hard seems a dieing art, and if Indy want to rely on Peyton’s cannon that’s fine, but incase you haven’t noticed Philly, Jacksonville, Cleveland, Dallas, San Fran et al you just don’t have that luxury sitting under center.

Player of the Week

Jeremey Bridges – Minnesota are soft in the secondary but Jared Allen just doesn’t give opposing quarterbacks time to find this out. Starting out of position and in place of an injured Mike Gandy, Jeremy Bridges played the game of his life; eradicating the threat of Allen and giving Warner the time needed to inflict the second defeat on an otherwise stellar Minnesota campaign.

Under the Radar Performance of the Week

Lousaka Polite – Polite converted on fourth and short to keep Miami in the game, and it’s not the first time he’s come up big in 2009. Okay a lone 2 yard run isn’t Chris Johnson’s version of big, but in the clutch and in need of a fresh set of downs Polite has stepped up on multiple ocasions this year.

The Biggest Movers and Shakers

downIf Houston want they could dummy most of the NFL right now, but injuries and poor play calling (seriously? Half back option at the goaline, Gary Kubiak?) have seen them slide to obscurity and #19 in the TPS rankings.

upJacksonville will get bumped from the playoffs in a heartbeat, but like it or loathe it (I’m all about the latter; I find Jacksonville broken on multiple levels), the Jags are sitting pretty in the AFC wildcard chase, so move up 4 out of begrudging respect.

Here’s how the rest of the NFL played itself out in week 13:

Rank Team Record Change Comment
1 Indianapolis Colts 12-0 - Unless Denver have the upset of the year in them, expect Indy to complete 22 consecutive wins next week and nab themselves an NFL record in the process. Up Next: Denver Broncos
2 New Orleans Saints 12-0 - Robert Meacham stripping a Redskins’ defensive player who was rumbling back a lazy Drew Brees interception; add miracle play to the lengthy list of ‘ways New Orleans find to win…’. Up Next: @Atlanta Falcons
3 Minnesota Vikings 10-2 - Brett Favre was the 16 year old given the keys to a Corvette built out of immaculate protection, a clampdown defense and the league’s premier runner, but when the defense misfires, the run is abandoned and offensive lineman drop like flies, the wheels came off the Favre Corvette to the tune of the Vikings’ second loss. Up Next: Cincinnati Bengals
4 Cincinnati Bengals 9-3 up1 36 carries for Cedric Benson! Ok he didn’t kill the Lions, but I hope the Jags, Chiefs and 49ers were watching because this was the blueprint. If your running back has moves, USE HIM! Up Next: @Minnesota Vikings
5 New England Patriots 7-5 down1 Tom Brady’s mystery hand injury saw him in and out the lockeroom all afternoon, but the total lack of pressure from New England’s jaded front 7 is why New England are in the two loss doghouse. Up Next: Carolina Panthers
6 San Diego Chargers 9-3 up2 The scoreline states otherwise, but Cleveland were never a touchdown away from San Diego, the Chargers just reverted to some sloppy prevent defense for literally the whole fourth quarter. Too easy. Up Next: @Dallas Cowboys
7 Pittsburgh Steelers 6-6 down1 Oof. That must have knocked the wind out of you Steeler Nation. The division is out of their hands, and they’ll need to win out to secure against a resurgent Broncos. Up Next: @Cleveland Browns
8 Dallas Cowboys 8-4 down1 Uh oh… what’s that familiar December feeling? Never has the NFC East been more winnable and yet the annual problem rears its ugly head. Up Next: San Diego Chargers
9 Philadelphia Eagles 7-4 - For those who didn’t see the game, but may have been deceived by mainstream media’s fascination with Mike Vick. His two touchdowns were late in the game against a lifeless Atlanta; this guy isn’t, and won’t be, a legit starting quarterback in the NFL. Up Next: @New York Giants
10 Arizona Cardinals 8-4 up2 Everyone knew the Vikings were vulnerable if you had time to attack their secondary. Arizona gave Warner that time, and it worked wonders to the tune of 142 Larry Fitz yards and a pair of beautiful Boldin TDs. Up Next: @San Francisco 49ers
11 Green Bay Packers 8-4 up1 A Donald Drive fumble and flukey interception that saw the ball bounce of Driver’s leg made this closer than it should have been. The Packers have solved their protection issues and their reaping the benefits. Up Next: @Chicago Bears
12 Denver Broncos 8-4 up13 Outside of three Tamba Hali sacks, Denver played a flawless game. The Broncos were hot for 6 games, off for 4 more and they’re on a run of 2 now. Based on past form and complex math, Denver should implode wildcard weekend. Oh crap… Up Next: @Indianapolis Colts
13 Baltimore Ravens 6-6 down2 Any semblence of a Ravens’ offense was thanks to defensive pass interference calls as Baltimore spectacularly flop to 6 and 6. Up Next: Detroit Lions
14 New York Giants 7-5 up2 Offensively New York have nothing right now, but fortunately their defense has woken up just enough to pull them through. Like the Steelers, this will be an uphill battle that starts with a must-win against Philly next week. Up Next: Philadelphia Eagles
15 Jacksonville Jaguars 7-5 up4 The Jags refuse to use Maurice Jones-Drew early and often, they refuse to put pressure on opposition quarterbacks, but luckily for Jags fans (yes, all 10 of you) they refuse to lose when the big game beckons. Up Next: Miami Dolphins
16 Tennessee Titans 5-7 down2 Their streak is over, but the Titans were actually on top for portions of this game. Nate Washington dropped a huge nailed on touchdown, whilst Vince Young made a bad overthrow in the redzone. The top of the NFL is played measured in inches and if you don’t convert, you will be burnt. Up Next: St. Louis Rams
17 Miami Dolphins 6-6 - Chad Henne hurled a ridiculous 52 pass attempts of varying quality, but thanks to redzone slip-ups and an ailing Tom Brady, Miami got an unexpected win to keep their hopes alive. Up Next: @Jacksonville Jaguars
18 New York Jets 6-6 - The Jets somehow need to hurdle Miami, pickup wins against Indy and Cincy and then hope the Steelers and Ravens drop another game each. Then the Jets will gloriously stroll into the AFC offseason. Yeah. That ain’t happening. Up Next: @Tampa Bay Buccaneers
19 Houston Texans 5-7 down6 Houston just bumped themselves from the playoffs, despite fileding top 10 calibre talent week in week out. Well, when I say field, I mean limp off for the entire first quarter costing them the game. Up Next: Seattle Seahawks
20 Atlanta Falcons 6-6 - Atlanta did nothing with Matt Ryan and Michael Turner, so eradicate them from the lineup and I believe you have a side with negative ability. Up Next: New Orleans Saints
21 Washington Redskins 3-9 up1 Washington are possibly the greatest 3 and 9 team of all time. Their defense made plays on fourth down but for the second time this season Shaun Suisham missed a gimme field goal that would have sealed the deal. Up Next: @Oakland Raiders
22 Seattle Seahawks 5-7 up3 Seattle look really tepid on offense; afraid to utilise the only offensive weapon to spark this year, Justin Forsett, and paying the price despite registering their 5th win this year. Up Next: Houston Texans
23 Carolina Panthers 5-7 up1 Matt Moore. Woo. Seriously, Carolina got lucky; sans D-Will they couldn’t cut Tampa quite like they should have. Up Next: @New England Patriots
24 San Francisco 49ers 5-7 down3 I don’t know what to make of San Francisco. They’ve hit that awkward point in a franchise’s life when they don’t have glaring holes but they still suck all over. Up Next: Arizona Cardinals
25 Chicago Bears 5-7 down2 Chicago may have won, but they RELIED ON ST. LOUIS RAMS’ MISCUES! Down 2. Just infuriatingly horrible Chicago. Up Next: Green Bay Packers
26 Buffalo Bills 4-8 - No, no. Hopes were misplaced. If the Jets didn’t drop easy TDs, miss easy throws in the redzone and generally F up their possessions, Buffalo would have been blown out. Up Next: @Kansas City Chiefs
27 Oakland Raiders 4-8 up2 From nowhere Bruce Gradkowsi has got this offense clicking. Gradkowski lacks the arm to be a long term starter in the NFL, and JaMarcus doesn’t work, so… with a plethora of QB talent do Oakland dip into the first round of the NFL draft? Up Next: Washington Redskins
28 Tampa Bay Buccaneers 1-11 - Tampa played a great game of football, outgaining Carolina by 150+ total yards on offense. But with no consistent run game they were forced to put the ball in Josh Freeman’s hands in the redzone, the result: INT, INT, INT, INT, INT. Up Next: New York Jets
29 Kansas City Chiefs 3-9 down2 Kansas City were obliterated in this contest. They did nothing offensively and were horrific on D (see: 44 points conceded). Up Next: Buffalo Bills
30 Detroit Lions 2-10 - With Stafford and Johnson healthy together for what seems like te first time in 11 weeks, the connection was fostered. Johnson caught bombs and finished with 123 yards. And so it begins… Up Next: @Baltimore Ravens
31 St Louis Rams 1-11 - St. Louis didn’t deserve to win this game – or any games this season – but I’ll give them credit. Steven Jackson has had a brutish year and the Rams are feeding him, Jacksonville don’t feed their studs but sit 6 wins ahead. What do I know?! Up Next: @Tennessee Titans
32 Cleveland Browns 1-11 - Brady Quinn has stemmed his slow death as an NFL starter with a couple of seemingly positive performances in recent weeks, but don’t be fooled. He’s chucking garbage time short stuff and he needs to be ousted. Up Next: Pittsburgh Steelers

Be sure to check back next week with our NFL Power Rankings post week 14.