Sky Sports' Neil Reynolds returns with his 'Pre-Week 15 Power Rankings'. Watch Neil every Sunday LIVE on Sky Sports at 6pm.
The same can be said of the Niners, who came out of their 'killer' three-game run against Green Bay, Baltimore and New Orleans with a 2-1 mark and top spot in the NFC. Jimmy G stepping up big in a huge spot was a major plus from an incredible defeat of the Saints.
I'm not knocking the Saints too hard for a game in which they played so well on offense and could very easily have won. I think Sean Payton's men are the most serious challengers to the Niners when the NFC playoffs begin.
It's all smoke and mirrors on New England's offense and they are forced to paper over their cracks with flea flickers and other assorted trick plays. Tom Brady doesn't trust his young receivers and I doubt they're all that impressed with him, either, to be honest.
The Steelers have won seven of their last and are right in the thick of the playoff hunt. It is the defense driving Mike Tomlin's men and they are merely asking Devlin 'Duck' Hodges not to screw things up at quarterback. That dominant D leads the NFL with 48 sacks and 33 takeaways.
The Vikings barely had to get out of second gear in last week's routine victory over Detroit that improved their home record to 6-0 this season. This team is in a playoff position as the sixth seed in the NFC but it is by no means guaranteed to stay that way through December.
Will the real Houston Texans please stand up? This team is so tough to figure out and, for that reason, I see them as a dangerous playoff opponent but not one that can go all the way.
Jameis Winston leads the NFL with 23 interceptions and has now thrown five pick sixes on the year. But he has also thrown for 4,115 yards and 26 scores, making him tough to figure out. I think he stays in Tampa and gets a long-term deal, but nowhere near at top dollar.
It's season over for the Colts as they dropped to their third straight loss on Sunday. It has been a valiant effort in Indianapolis given the whole Andrew Luck shock retirement drama of the late summer, but they have simply been too inconsistent and not good enough.
The Jets may be merely playing out the slate in a rough season, but they have at least won four of their last five. Okay, I'm clutching at straws but trying to be positive in this season of goodwill.
This is where I trot out that line about how maybe Ron Rivera wasn't the problem after all. There is some truth to that, though. A rebuild - both in the front office and on the field - is coming in Carolina.