Despite an impressive shutout victory on the road at San Francisco, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers didn’t crack the top 10 in the latest ESPN.com Power Rankings.
They stayed put at No. 11 for the second straight week, despite losses by two top-10 teams (the Colts and Giants). All four voters had the Bucs (7-3) at No. 11 and that prevented the NFC South from getting three teams in the top 10 for the first time this year.
The Atlanta Falcons remained the No. 1 team for the second straight week. They had three first-place votes while AFC South colleague Paul Kuharsky had the Falcons (8-2) at No. 3.
The 7-3 New Orleans Saints moved up one spot to No. 8 with their victory against Seattle. Although the NFC South is home of the top-rated team in the Power Rankings, it also has the No. 32 team.
The 1-9 Carolina Panthers held onto No. 32 for the second straight week, and all four voters had them as the worst team in the NFL.