My power ratings are designed to be a starting point for point-spread betting between two teams. They take into account recent performances, long-term injuries, coaching, and strength of schedule. These ratings are intended to help predict performances in the present, but they’re not necessarily predictive for the rest of the season.
I will take my Power Ratings into account when I make my weekly against the spread picks, but I’ll also consider current injury reports, home-field advantage, weather, and other factors that may be relevant. I hope you find these ratings useful and good luck with your wagers!
Example: My top-rated team, the Rams (7.5), would be 16-point favorites on a neutral field over my worst-rated team, the Texans (-8.5). Using a typical three-point adjustment for home-field advantage, the Rams would be 19-point favorites over the Texans at home and 13-point favorites over the Texans on the road.
|Rank||Team||Power Rating||2021 Record (ATS)||Ratings Change||Super Bowl LVI Odds|
|1.||Los Angeles Rams||7.5||7-1 (4-4)||+1||+650|
|2.||Tampa Bay Buccaneers||7||6-2 (3-5)||-.5||+650|
|3.||Buffalo Bills||7||5-2 (4-2-1)||—||+500|
|4.||Green Bay Packers||6.5||7-1 (7-1)||+.5||+900|
|5.||Dallas Cowboys||6.5||6-1 (7-0)||+1||+1000|
|6.||Arizona Cardinals||6||7-1 (6-2)||-.5||+1000|
|7.||Baltimore Ravens||5||5-2 (3-4)||—||+1200|
|8.||Los Angeles Chargers||3||4-3 (4-3)||-1||+2200|
|9.||Kansas City Chiefs||3||4-4 (2-6)||-.5||+1400|
|10.||Tennessee Titans||2.5||6-2 (6-2)||-.5||+2200|
|11.||Seattle Seahawks||2.5||3-5 (5-3)||+5||+5000|
|12.||New Orleans Saints||2||5-2 (4-3)||-.5||+3500|
|13.||San Francisco 49ers||2||3-4 (2-5)||+.5||+5000|
|14.||Cleveland Browns||2||4-4 (4-4)||-.5||+5000|
|15.||Cincinnati Bengals||1.5||5-3 (4-4)||-.5||+5000|
|16.||New England Patriots||1.5||4-4 (4-4)||+1||+5000|
|17.||Indianapolis Colts||1.5||3-5 (5-3)||-.5||+6500|
|18.||Las Vegas Raiders||1||5-2 (4-3)||-.5||+5000|
|19.||Pittsburgh Steelers||1||4-3 (3-4)||+1||+5000|
|20.||Minnesota Vikings||.5||3-4 (3-4)||-1||+10000|
|21.||Philadelphia Eagles||-.5||3-5 (4-4)||+.5||+50000|
|22.||Denver Broncos||-.5||4-4 (4-4)||—||+10000|
|23.||Carolina Panthers||-1||4-4 (4-4)||+.5||+20000|
|24.||Atlanta Falcons||-1.5||3-4 (3-4)||-.5||+20000|
|25.||Chicago Bears||-2||3-5 (3-5)||—||+50000|
|26.||New York Giants||-2.5||2-6 (4-4)||+1||+50000|
|28.||Miami Dolphins||-3||1-7 (2-5-1)||—||+50000|
|29.||New York Jets||-5||2-5 (2-5)||+.5||+100000|
|30.||Jacksonville Jaguars||-5||1-6 (2-5)||-.5||+100000|
|31.||Detroit Lions||-5.5||0-8 (4-4)||-.5||+100000|
|32.||Houston Texans||-8.5||1-7 (3-5)||-.5||+100000|
Week 9 Risers
Teams who improved from the last Power Ratings update on Oct 27.
Los Angeles Rams (6.5 to 7.5) — In true Rams’ fashion, Los Angeles made the splashiest move before the trade deadline by acquiring Von Miller for their second- and third-round picks in 2022. The Rams are all-in on making a Super Bowl run this season with blue-chip players all over the roster on both sides of the ball. They bullied the Texans on their way to a 38-0 lead before taking their foot off the gas last week, which enabled the ugliest backdoor cover we’ve seen to this point in the season.
Green Bay Packers (6 to 6.5) — The Packers went into Arizona without WR Davante Adams and DC Joe Barry and knocked off the previously undefeated Cardinals to jump to the top of the NFC standings. The Packers are riding an NFL-best seven-game outright and ATS winning streak since no-showing in the season opener against the Saints.
Dallas Cowboys (5.5 to 6.5) — The Cowboys are the only team that is still unbeaten ATS with a 7-0 record, and they’ve covered 10 of their last 11 games dating back to last season. They kept their winning ways going with backup QB Cooper Rush out-playing Kirk Cousins on Sunday Night Football. Three different Cowboys’ WRs posted 80+ receiving yards, and Dallas’ defense held the Vikings to a miserable 1-for-13 on third-down conversions.
Seattle Seahawks (-2.5 to 2.5) — The Seahawks got at least one win in three tries with Russell Wilson out of the lineup. I’m preemptively moving the Seahawks up in my power ratings this week. Wilson had the pin removed from his finger this week, and he’s expected to try to play when the Seahawks return from their bye in Week 10. Seattle’s defense has also played better, allowing 14.3 points per game against weaker opponents (@Pit, NO, Jax) in the last three weeks.
San Francisco 49ers (1.5 to 2) — The 49ers outgained the Bears 8.6 yards per play to 4.8 in Week 8, and they did in large part to the 83-yard catch-and-run play by Deebo Samuel. The third-year receiver posted 6/171 receiving on nine targets last week, which put him at 819 receiving yards through seven games, surpassing Jerry Rice’s previous franchise-best of 781 yards through seven contests in 1986.
New England Patriots (.5 to 1.5) — The Patriots have played over the total in four straight games thanks to scoring 25+ points in every game while averaging 33.8 points per game. They won an ugly game against the Chargers in which Mac Jones and Justin Herbert each completed just 51.4% of their pass while averaging 6.2 and 6.4 YPA, respectively. The key difference was Mac Jones didn’t turn the ball over while Herbert threw two INTs.
Pittsburgh Steelers (0 to 1) — The Steelers are back in the mix of the AFC playoffs after reeling off three straight victories thanks to their defense. They’re allowing just 16.3 points per game in their last three contests, and Pittsburgh is an AFC-best 6-1 toward unders.
Philadelphia Eagles (-1 to -.5) — The Eagles snapped a two-game losing streak by absolutely dominating the Lions in the trenches in a lopsided 44-6 victory. The Eagles’ offense averaged 5.1 YPC while the Lions averaged just 3.2 YPC, and the Eagles tallied six total sacks and limited the Lions’ offense to just 3.9 yards per play.
Carolina Panthers (-1.5 to -1) — I feel like I’ve already typed this sentence this season but…The Panthers should get Christian McCaffrey (hamstring, IR) this week to infuse some life into the offense. Sam Darnold will also be in a race to play after suffering a nasty concussion against the Falcons. Carolina’s defense smothered Atlanta last week, limiting them to 10 points and 213 total yards on just 50 plays.
New York Giants (-3.5 to -2.5) — The Giants won the turnover battle (2-1) and they held the Chiefs to 4.8 yards per play and 20 points on Monday Night Football, but they still couldn’t knock off the reeling Chiefs. They should at least get Saquon Barkley and Kenny Golladay back this week to give some life to this offense.
New York Jets (-5.5 to -5) — Mike White came out of nowhere to lead the league in passing yards (405) in Week 8, and he remarkably did it with the league’s shortest aDOT (4.2) last week. White led consecutive touchdown drives late in the fourth quarter to erase an 11-point deficit to knock off the Bengals, the AFC’s top team heading into Week 8.
Week 9 Fallers
Teams who worsened from the last Power Ratings update on Oct. 27.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers (7.5 to 7) — The Buccaneers lost to Trevor Siemian in Week 8, which is an automatic drop in my Power Ratings. Tom Brady’s struggles against the Saints’ defense spilled into the 2021 season. He’s now thrown seven INTs in four games against the Saints compared to 13 INTs in his other 24 games since joining the Buccaneers last season.
Arizona Cardinals (6.5 to 6) — The members of the 1972 Miami Dolphins can pop their bottles of champagne as they go another year as the only undefeated team in NFL history. The Cardinals were the last team to be knocked from the ranks of the unbeaten with their TNF defeat to a Davante Adams-less Packers in Week 8. The bigger loss came before the game when it was announced J.J. Watt would miss the rest of the season with a shoulder injury.
Kansas City Chiefs (3.5 to 3) — The Chiefs continue to be money losers with their 4-15 ATS record in their last 19 games. They’ve failed to cover in four straight home games after a dismal offensive performance in their slim victory against the Giants in Week 8. Patrick Mahomes averaged an ugly 5.7 YPA and Travis Kelce finished with fewer than seven FP for the second time this year with the Chiefs averaging just 4.8 yards per play.
Los Angeles Chargers (4 to 3) — Justin Herbert has come crashing back to earth in his last two games with Mike Williams disappearing and with defensive masterminds Bill Belichick and Wink Martindale sinking their teeth into him. He’s completed 40/74 passes (54.1%) for 418 yards (5.7 YPA), three TDs, and three INTs against the Patriots and Ravens in LA’s last two games.
Tennessee Titans (3 to 2.5) — The Titans were going to get a full point adjustment up this week, but I had to give them a half-point adjustment down with news that Derrick Henry is likely done for the rest of the regular season. Adrian Peterson will do his best King Henry impersonation for the time being, but the future Hall of Famer can’t carry an offense at 36 years old like he once could when he was 26 years old.
New Orleans Saints (2.5 to 2) — Jameis Winston is done for the season with a torn ACL, which will leave this offense in the hands of Taysom Hill moving forward. I planned on moving the Saints up a half-point after their victory over the Buccaneers so I’m technically adjusting the Saints down a point this week with the switch from Winston to Hill. The Saints posted a 3-1 record in Hill’s four starts last season, and he averaged 7.3 YPA and he completed 72% of his passes.
Cincinnati Bengals (2 to 1.5) — The Bengals followed up the NFL’s best win in Week 7 with the league’s worst loss in Week 8. Cincinnati was in a position to win and cover with an 11-point lead against the one-win Jets midway through the fourth quarter, but they allowed backup QB Mike White to lead consecutive scoring drives to tumble from the top of AFC standings.
Cleveland Browns (2.5 to 2) — The Browns have one of the league’s more talented rosters, but they’re being done in by their limited passing attack. Baker Mayfield is mostly playing poorly through his non-throwing shoulder injury, and Jarvis Landry crushed the offense last week with two big drops and a lost fumble in their 10-point showing against the Steelers.
Indianapolis Colts (2 to 1.5) — Carson Wentz blew Indianapolis’ chance to climb right back into the AFC South race, and the division would’ve been even more up for grabs after we learned that Derrick Henry is most likely done for the regular season with his foot injury. Wentz threw one of the worst interceptions you’ll ever see in a tie game with 90 seconds left in regulation. He bounced back to lead the Colts on an impressive game-tying drive before throwing another back-breaking INT in Colts territory to ice the game in overtime.
Minnesota Vikings (1.5 to 1) — The Vikings have played up and down to their competition all year long, and it really bit them in the butt in an embarrassing loss to the Dak Prescott-less Cowboys. Kirk Cousins got completely out-played by Cowboys’ backup Cooper Rush, as he averaged just 5.0 YPA and the Vikings converted just one third-down attempt in 13 tries. The Vikings also lost their best pass rusher, Danielle Hunter, to a torn pectoral muscle.
Atlanta Falcons (-1 to -1.5) — Calvin Ridley is indefinitely stepping away from the Falcons, and this offense could have some real issues moving the ball for as long as he’s out of the lineup. They mustered a pathetic 10 points and 213 total yards on just 50 plays going in a loss to a previously hopeless-looking Carolina squad.
Washington Football Team (-2 to -3) — Washington heads into its bye week as one of the league’s biggest disappointments with just two victories and one backdoor ATS cover through eight games. The Football Team remains a toxic organization and they’re heading nowhere fast until they figure out their quarterback situation.
Jacksonville Jaguars (-4.5 to -5) — Urban Meyer still isn’t great at this whole coaching in the NFL thing. The Jaguars picked up their first win of the season back in Week 6 and it looked like Meyer’s team celebrated the win for two weeks. The Jaguars no-showed in their first game out of a bye, which is never a good sign for a franchise, allowing the previously anemic Geno Smith to lead the league with a 128.3 passer rating in Week 8.
Detroit Lions (-5 to -5.5) — The Lions remained winless heading into their bye, and their lines got absolutely dominated in their 44-6 loss to the Eagles. The Eagles’ offense averaged 5.1 YPC while the Lions averaged just 3.2 YPC, and Lions’ quarterbacks absorbed six sacks and the offense averaged 3.9 yards per play.
Houston Texans (-8 to -8.5) — The Texans got the ugliest backdoor cover we’ll see all season long, scoring three touchdowns in the final eight minutes against Rams’ backups to lose 38-22 as 17-point home underdogs. The Texans should get Tyrod Taylor back this week, and he’s worth at least three points toward the spread considering how terrible Davis Mills has played. They’re only touchdown underdogs this week against the Dolphins in a battle of teams on seven-game losing streaks.