Continuing the updated power rankings it's numbers 24 to 17.
24) Minnesota Vikings
To borrow a turn of phrase from fantasy analyst Matthew Berry, The Vikings defense is better than you think it is, coming in sixth in the league for yards against the pass.
Unfortunately, for the Vikings fans though the offense is somewhat worse than everyone thought it was going to be. Most puzzlingly of all a lot of this is self-inflicted. For reasons no sane observer can fathom Jerrick McKinnon has been severely under-utilised all season in favor of giving carries to Matt Asiata.
Unless Teddy Bridgewater improves dramatically Minnesota are currently the worse team in the NFC North by some margin.
23) St Louis Rams
With the defense finally playing up its potential the Rams are capable of taking any team the distance. The problem though is that they have Shaun Hill starting at quarterback. You can say this is only because Sam Bradford got injured, but really would Bradford be any better? In this system it's unlikely.
Next year's draft could be a game changer but right now the Rams are stuck in neutral.
22) Chicago Bears
If you're feeling charitable you would describe Jay Cutler as enigmatic. If you weren't you would describe Cutler as petulant. For better or worse though Cutler's contract means that the Bears and their QB are tied together for the foreseeable future.
Considering this and the the fact that they already have Marshall, Jeffery and Forte it is fair to say that the Bears should be doing better than they are.
21) New Orleans Saints
At 21st place the Saints are the highest place NFC South team, they are also easily the most disappointing team in the NFL. The prevailing thinking still seems to be that the poverty of the NFC South will allow New Orleans to make it to the playoffs but given that even their home forms seems to have deserted this isn't the certainty
that it once appeared to be.
The Saints do have plenty of talent but it isn't showing right now.
20) New York Giants
Other than Odell Beckham Jr it is hard to fine anything encouraging about the Giants this season. With Eli now aged 33 and Tom Coughlin aged 68 a changing of the guard might be in order because, right now the team is going nowhere fast.
19) Houston Texans
A torn pectoral muscle means that the Texans aren't going to find out if Ryan Mallet is a legitimate starting QB prospect. This is a real blow to the franchise long term plans because now they have no idea if they need a QB in the draft.
Furthermore, as any football fan knows everything stems from the QB position and right now the Texans are playing Ryan Fitzpatrick. That says it all really. Even playing both ways J.J Watt can only do so much.
18) Buffalo Bills
There is really only so much you can do with Kyle Orton at quarterback. The Bills have a great defensive line and some great options at wide receiver, but like a resistor on an electric current, Orton is going to stop those players reaching their full potential.
When Bills fans look at the likes of Odell Beckham Jnr, Brandin Cooks and Kelvin Benjamin who were taken with later picks, they have got to wonder whether trading up for Sammy Watkins and sacrificing so many picks was worth it.
17) San Diego Chargers
Without Phillip Rivers playing at an MVP level the Chargers are a thoroughly uninspiring team. A once promising season has all but disintergrated. It would be a surprise to see the Chargers make the playoffs now.
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