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NFL Power Rankings Week 7: Texans Falling, Rams Climbing

Nearing the halfway mark on the season we look to see which teams are separating themselves from the pack, both upwards and downwards in the NFL Power Rankings entering Week Seven.

1: Denver Broncos (6-0) Last Week's Ranking: 1

Jacksonville came to town for a game everyone had written off as an automatic victory for Peyton Manning and the Denver Broncos crew. In the end it was a victory, but the Jaguars played hard and even picked Manning off. That still doesn't change the fact that the Broncos are the best team in the NFL right now, and can only get better once Von Miller returns.

2: Seattle Seahawks (5-1) Last Week's Ranking: 3

The Seahawks beat the Titans at home this week. The defense is nasty. Russell Wilson continues to make all the right moves. Marshawn Lynch is still running in beast mode. Look for the Seahawks to keep form through the playoffs.

3: Kansas City Chiefs (6-0) Last Week's Ranking: 4

Two 6-0 teams, both from the AFC, and both from the AFC West. Well how about Alex Smith and those Chiefs? Smith is playing smart football, the defense is dominant and Andy Reid has regained the genius of old form.

4: San Francisco 49ers (4-2) Last Week's Ranking: 5

Up and down, that's the equivalent of Colin Kaepernick's Sophomore season. Luckily for him Frank Gore is still a durable power runner, the defense is stocked with playmakers and his security blanket is Vernon Davis who had a field day against the Arizona Cardinals.

5: New England Patriots (5-1) Last Week's Ranking: 8

Tom Brady and his last second magic took one from the New Orleans Saints, removing them from the unbeaten clique in the process. The look on Rob Ryan's face said it all at the end of the game. With as bad as it is personnel-wise in New England, it can only go up once the bodies get healthy.

6: Cincinnati Bengals (4-2) Last Week's Ranking: 7

The Bengals won a shootout with the Buffalo Bills, with Andy Dalton hooking up with A. J. Green for over 100 yards on the day. A win is a win, putting the Bengals atop the AFC North.

7: New Orleans Saints (5-1) Last Week's Ranking: 2

Ouch. Tom Brady still has some bite, as the Saints learned Sunday. Drew Brees to Jimmy Graham is still a deadly combination though, and I expect Rob Ryan won't allow a defense repeat.

8: Green Bay Packers (3-2) Last Week's Ranking: 9

Green Bay pulled a win out of their contest with the Ravens, however, the victory wasn't without injuries to the team as Randall Cobb and James Jones left the game with injuries. On the plus side, rookie RB Eddie Lacy ran for 120 yards against the Ravens defense. Combine that rushing attack with the always deadly Aaron Rodgers and the Packers can be dangerous.

9: Chicago Bears (4-2) Last Week's Ranking: 10

Jay Cutler couldn't ask for a better one two punch than Brandon Marshall and Alshon Jeffery. The NFC North is a stout contender, and provided Jay Cutler can stay focused, the Bears will continue to climb.

10: Dallas Cowboys (3-3) Last Week's Ranking: 12

Two weeks ago Dallas was one Tony Romo moment from beating the Broncos. This week the Cowboys beat up on division rival Redskins. At 3-3, the Cowboys are in control of the NFC East.

11: Indianapolis Colts (4-2) Last Week's Ranking: 6

The Colts went out West Monday and dropped a game to the Chargers. Andrew Luck looks like a solid centerpiece for years to come and newly acquired RB Trent Richardson runs with conviction. The Colts are on the upswing.

12: Baltimore Ravens (3-3) Last Week's Ranking: 11

The Ravens lost a close battle to the Packers. The defense is good, but the offensive line is like a sieve. Joe Flacco was sacked 5 times in the outing. That's a pace for injury.

13: Miami Dolphins (3-2) Last Week's Ranking: 13

A bye week, letting Ryan Tannehill's body heal up. He's been sacked 24 times this season. The Dolphins need to figure out a way to protect their QB or the solid defense and offensive weaponry will languish on a subpar team.

14: Detroit Lions (4-2) Last Week's Ranking: 18

Matthew Stafford had a 4 TD afternoon, while the signing of Reggie Bush was a genius move. The Lions need to be consistent to be considered serious challengers, but beware if they do.

This team cannot function on offense without Calvin Johnson, it's as simple as that. Their secondary in particular is struggling to hold any offense is a problem, especially if they want to take charge of a highly contested NFC North.

15: San Diego Chargers (3-3) Last Week's Ranking: 20

Philip Rivers and company hosted the Colts, and the Chargers ran away with a win, literally. The Colts had no answer for Ryan Matthews. Up this week, but as always; be aware of the River's conundrum.

16: Atlanta Falcons (1-4) Last Week's Ranking: 16

The Falcons have an uphill battle the rest of the season, WR Julio Jones is out with a foot injury. The defense falls apart, as Geno Smith demonstrated. There is nothing bringing this team together right now.

17: Tennessee Titans (3-3) Last Week's Ranking: 15

The Titans played well against a tough Seahawks team in Seattle, one of the roughest places to play. Ryan Fitzpatrick as interim QB will keep them around until Jake Locker heals up, while the defense continues to be one of the leagues' stingiest.

18: Philadelphia Eagles (3-3) Last Week's Ranking: 21

Well now. Nick Foles is making the argument to keep Michael Vick on the bench. A solid performance against the Cowboys could see that outcome happen.

19: St. Louis Rams (3-3) Last Week's Ranking: 25

Wow. The Rams beat up on the Texans, putting Matt Schaub out in the process. Are things starting to click in St. Louis? Sam Bradford had three TDs on the day and the defense is starting to gel.

20: Carolina Panthers (2-3) Last Week's Ranking: 26

Carolina ran roughshod over Minnesota Sunday; however, Minnesota's defense can't stop anything vaguely resembling an NFL type offense. Cam Newton lacks the QB awareness to make him great. The defense will keep the team in games, but that's about all.

21: Arizona Cardinals (3-3) Last Week's Ranking: 17

Carson Palmer has 11 interceptions in 6 games. Ugh. The defense keeps the Cardinals competitive, the offense keeps them constipated.

22: Buffalo Bills (2-4) Last Week's Ranking: 22

QBs are dropping like flies in Buffalo, so much so that they just signed Matt Flynn. Pray for E.J. Manual's recovery to be speedy.

23: Cleveland Browns (3-3) Last Week's Ranking: 19

Brandon Weeden had a decent game against the Lions but he continues to show why the Browns can't afford not to look for an upgrade at the QB position with plays like that floater duck interception. On the bright side, if the Browns can find a QB, receiver Josh Gordon appears to be the real deal.

24: New York Jets (3-3) Last Week's Ranking: 23

It amazes me how functionally dysfunctional the Jets really are. Rookie QB Geno Smith is good cop, bad cop, Keystone cop all rolled into one package. Rex Ryan has lashed together a defense that puts on decent performances, yet the managed to lose to a floundering Steelers team.

25: Oakland Raiders (2-4) Last Week's Ranking: 24

The Raiders ran into the undefeated Chiefs and Terrelle Pryor struggled. It also didn't help that he was the leading rusher for the Raiders as well. Look for them to bounce back, but not very far as this is a growing year for the Raiders.

26: Houston Texans (2-4) Last Week's Ranking: 14

Firstly, no one should cheer an injured player. That being said, the Texans are sinking quickly. Matt Schaub might have seen the last of his time as a Texan and Coach Kubiak might not be far behind.

27: Pittsburgh Steelers (1-4) Last Week's Ranking: 27

Ben Roethlberger put the Steelers on his back and led them to a victory over the Jets. The defense is still susceptible to the running attack though. Fix that up or the Steelers will remain a cellar dweller.

28: Washington Redskins (1-4) Last Week's Ranking: 28

The Redskins defense made Dallas offense look good Sunday, missing tackles left and right. Robert Griffin III is starting to look like his old self, but until the defense changes, things will be bleak in D.C.

29: Minnesota Vikings (1-4) Last Week's Ranking: 29

The Vikings lost Sunday. Matt Cassel threw the ball well enough and Adrian Peterson played through adversity, but in the end it was still a losing effort. Perhaps the addition of Josh Freeman will change things a bit in Minnesota.

30: Jacksonville Jaguars (0-6) Last Week's Ranking: 32

Well now. Insert Chad Henne in as QB and the Jaguars looked reasonable. Wonder if Blaine Gabbert ever gets another look?

31: Tampa Bay Buccaneers (0-5) Last Week's Ranking: 30

Dissaray. Mike Glennon is the starting QB, but I wonder who his head coach will be next year. With the MRSA issue that has claimed a few starters and the injury bug hitting Vincent Jackson, Tampa is playing for next year.

32: New York Giants (0-6) Last Week's Ranking: 31

Ewwww. Congrats on passing the Jaguars as the worst the 2013 season has to offer. What happened in the Big Apple?