Tabeek's NFL Power Rankings: Falcons continue upward climb

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It's amazing how one weekend of football can clear up what was a massive logjam atop each of the conferences, especially in the NFC. There's still a lot to be decided, don't get me wrong, but the scenarios are a little more clear-cut heading into the final weekend of the 2019 regular season.

The Ravens head into Week 17 as the undisputed top team in the NFL and now the road to the Super Bowl goes through Baltimore. Things in the NFC are still up for grabs, but at least we know who's in and who's out – the NFC East seems like a formality now after Philly's win over Dallas.

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As far as teams on the move in this week's power rankings go, how about those Falcons? Atlanta is now 5-2 since its bye week and can close out the regular season with a massive turnaround after beginning the year with that dreadful 1-7 start.

So, without further ado, it's time for the Week 17 edition of my Wildly Important NFL Power Rankings. Enjoy.

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1. Ravens (13-2) TABEEK'S TAKE PREVIOUS
They’ve won 11 straight, own the top seed in the AFC and the road to the Super Bowl goes through Baltimore. 1
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2. Saints (12-3) TABEEK'S TAKE PREVIOUS
Drew Brees and that offense is on fire right now and they’re relatively healthy. They can still land the No. 2 and a bye. 2
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3. Patriots (12-3) TABEEK'S TAKE PREVIOUS
The Pats clinched their 11th straight division championship and have the inside track to the No. 2 seed. 5
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4. Packers (12-3) TABEEK'S TAKE PREVIOUS
Huge win over the Vikings on ‘MNF’ and they own the No. 2 right now. Amazing. 6
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5. Chiefs (11-4) TABEEK'S TAKE PREVIOUS
The Chiefs have won five straight and the West title. If the Pats somehow lose to the Dolphins, KC could take the No. 2 seed. 9
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6. 49ers (12-3) TABEEK'S TAKE PREVIOUS
The Niners have gone 2-2 in December but … they now own the No. 1 seed in the NFC. They close out the season with a tough one in Seattle. 7
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7. Seahawks (11-4) TABEEK'S TAKE PREVIOUS
Costly loss to the up-and-coming Cardinals but there’s still scenario where they could land one of the top-two seeds and a bye. 3
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8. Vikings (10-5) TABEEK'S TAKE PREVIOUS
I’ve been bullish on the Vikings but they’re a little beat up right now. I still think they’ll be a tough out in the postseason. 4
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9. Texans (10-5) TABEEK'S TAKE PREVIOUS
They’re in the playoffs and will end up with either the No. 3 or 4 seed. 10
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10. Bills (10-5) TABEEK'S TAKE PREVIOUS
A missed opportunity to dethrone the Patriots as East champs. Solid team but they need a downfield threat in the worst way. 8
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11. Eagles (8-7) TABEEK'S TAKE PREVIOUS
Monster win over the rival Cowboys and now they have the inside track to the NFC East title and a playoff berth. 12
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12. Titans (8-7) TABEEK'S TAKE PREVIOUS
Tough loss to the Saints. They’re clinging to the sixth seed in the AFC. Win this week and they’re in. Lose and they’ll need help. 14
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13. Steelers (8-7) TABEEK'S TAKE PREVIOUS
The fact that they’re even in the mix for a playoff spot is amazing. Loss to the Jets may have sealed their fate. 13
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14. Cowboys (7-8) TABEEK'S TAKE PREVIOUS
They had everything in front of them but like so many times this season, the Cowboys have squandered away opportunities. Changes are coming to Big D. 11
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15. Raiders (7-8) TABEEK'S TAKE PREVIOUS
The Raiders’ playoff hopes are still alive! What needs to happen? Win, plus a Colts win and losses by the Titans and Steelers … and Oakland is in. Wow. 19
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16. Buccaneers (7-8) TABEEK'S TAKE PREVIOUS
The Bucs will look back at 2019 and see a lot of positives, missed opportunities and self-inflicted wounds. 15
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17. Falcons (6-9) TABEEK'S TAKE PREVIOUS
Speaking of the Bucs, if the Falcons can knock off their NFC South foe, they’ll finish 2019 with a 6-2 run and that’s an impressive turnaround for a team that started 1-7. 18
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18. Colts (7-8) TABEEK'S TAKE PREVIOUS
They rolled the hapless Panthers but it’s too little too late. 17
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19. Rams (8-7) TABEEK'S TAKE PREVIOUS
They lost a heartbreaker to the 49ers and with it went their playoff hopes. 16
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20. Bears (7-8) TABEEK'S TAKE PREVIOUS
They were a no-show in Kansas City and they’ll be lucky to break even on the season. Disappointing year. 20
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21. Broncos (6-9) TABEEK'S TAKE PREVIOUS
Speaking of lost seasons, they bounced back with a win but face an uncertain offseason in the Mile-High City. 21
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22. Browns (6-9) TABEEK'S TAKE PREVIOUS
They’ve lost two straight and close out a disappointing year on the road vs. the Bengals. If they lose that one, watch out. 22
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23. Jets (6-9) TABEEK'S TAKE PREVIOUS
The Jets have had their moments this season, at times flashing glimpses of being a good football team. 27
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24. Chargers (5-10) TABEEK'S TAKE PREVIOUS
I expected great things from the Chargers this season and, boy, I was wrong. There will be some significant changes in LA this offseason. 23
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25. Panthers (5-10) TABEEK'S TAKE PREVIOUS
This team is already thinking about 2020 and reportedly already interviewing candidates for the head coaching job. 24
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26. Jaguars (5-10) TABEEK'S TAKE PREVIOUS
They’ve lost six of their last seven games and just parted ways with Tom Coughlin. Are more changes coming? 25
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27. Cardinals (5-9-1) TABEEK'S TAKE PREVIOUS
I like where this team is going. They’ve won their last two games and the offseason will determine if they can take the next step. 26
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28. Giants (4-11) TABEEK'S TAKE PREVIOUS
The G-Men have some parts to build on, but who will be the ones constructing this team in the future? Will there be changes in New York? 29
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29. Dolphins (4-11) TABEEK'S TAKE PREVIOUS
What a crazy win against the Bengals. Say what you want about tanking, but this team hasn’t quit. I like it 30
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30. Lions (3-11-1) TABEEK'S TAKE PREVIOUS
When they finally do get Matthew Stafford back (next season) let’s hope they surround him with some capable weapons at least. 28
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31. Redskins (3-12) TABEEK'S TAKE PREVIOUS
A cringe-worthy season for Redskins fans, and now Dwayne Haskins will miss the final game. 31
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32. Bengals (1-14) TABEEK'S TAKE PREVIOUS
Great effort by the Bengals in Miami – and a reminder that Andy Dalton isn’t what’s wrong with this team. 32
Atlanta Falcons quarterback Matt Ryan #2 high-fives Atlanta Falcons head coach Dan Quinn during the first half against the Chicago Bears on September 27, 2020. (Photo by Kyle Hess/Atlanta Falcons)

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