1. Green Bay (14-1)
The Packers dominated the reeling Bears on Christmas night and are in position to rest starters in their final game of the regular season. Though I still contend that they have some glaring weaknesses, the play of Aaron Rodgers makes up for the majority of them.
2. New Orleans Saints (12-3)
The Saints dismantling of the Atlanta Falcons on Monday Night is a firm example of why I think the Packers might need to be a little concerned on their repeat title run. If the Saints can somehow pull off the second seed and the first round bye, then they will be in position to make a solid run at a title.
3. New England Patriots (12-3)
New England suffers from the same disease as the Ravens, they play to the level of their competition. With a sub-par defense and no running game, it's hard to see the Patriots putting up enough points to get past the Ravens, Steelers or even potentially the Texans.
4. San Francisco 49ers (12-3)
Gotta hand it to the 49ers, they are all about the winning this year. Not an impressive team in any sense, they are solid in all areas and could make some noise in the postseason. Unfortunately, I can't see them getting past either Green Bay or New Orleans.
5. Pittsburgh Steelers (11-4)
The only thing stopping the Steelers from representing the AFC again in the SuperBowl is the Steelers themselves. Health is a big concern for this team and if they can get healthy in the next week or even two, then watch out.
6. Baltimore Ravens (11-4)
How can you trust these Ravens? Simply put, I can't because they have an inconsistent defense and an even more unpredictable offense. They can play lights out for stretches so don't count them out of it yet.
7. Detroit Lions (10-5)
The Lions are in the playoffs! As hard as that statement is to wrap your head around, it's the truth and this is a team nobody want to play. With an explosive offense and a defense that is getting steadily better as the season ends, I could see this team doing some damage.
8. Cincinnati Bengals (9-6)
As hard as it is to see the Lions doing what they have done, it's even more unfathomable that the Bengals under a rookie QB and wideout are in the position of possibly making a playoff berth. If they can somehow beat the Ravens at home, then they are in. Not an easy task but possible.
9. Houston Texans (10-5)
The Texans, while still a threat due to their stout running game and solid defense, is just not the team they were with Shaub under center. Losing him for the season took the air out of this team and even though they will make the playoffs, don't expect too much out of them.
10. New York Giants (8-7)
It's hard to imagine that the Giants are in contention in the NFC East but thanks to the continuous screw-ups by the Cowboys, they have one shot to make it. The playoffs for them start this Sunday night against the Cowboys. Win and your in, that's how the story goes.
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