Vikings 14th in latest power rankings

Christian Ponder (Otto Gruele Jr/Getty)

The Vikings moved up one spot without even playing last weekend, but the pollsters know the meat of their schedule is ahead of them.

Just win, Houston.

The Texans did exactly that Sunday, rallying for a 43-37 overtime victory over the lowly Jacksonville Jaguars to retain the top spot in the AP Pro32 NFL power rankings.

Houston (9-1) received nine first-place votes and 346 points Tuesday from 11 of the 12 media members on The Associated Press panel reporting their ballots.

The San Francisco 49ers moved up two places to second following a 32-7 rout of the Chicago Bears on Monday night. The 49ers got one first-place vote and 326 points, while the New England Patriots had the other first-place vote and are seventh.

ESPN's Chris Berman was so impressed with the Patriots' 59-24 romp over the Indianapolis Colts, he moved them to first from sixth.

"Could have done without that 59th point," said Berman, a reference to the extra point in which tight end Rob Gronkowski broke his left forearm and will be sidelined indefinitely.

Atlanta slipped to third, with Denver, Green Bay and Baltimore rounding out the top six.

The Bears, playing without injured quarterback Jay Cutler, took the biggest tumble of the week - five positions to eighth.

"Jay Cutler can't get back soon enough, but it's the defensive meltdown in San Francisco that should have Lovie Smith just as concerned," said Bob Glauber of Newsday.

Philadelphia continues its free fall from being ranked eighth at the start of the season. The Eagles (3-7) dropped three more places to 27th after a 31-6 loss to Washington.

"How far have the Eagles fallen?" asked Pompei. "It is now news that Andy Reid will be coaching next weekend."

Kansas City is 32nd, taking over the bottom spot from Jacksonville.

"Worst quarterback situation East of Arizona," said Clifton Brown of Sporting News.

AP Pro32 Power Rankings

The Associated Press Pro32 NFL Power Rankings, as voted by a 12-member panel, with first-place votes in parentheses, records through Nov. 20, total points based on 32 points for a first-place vote through one point for a 32nd-place vote, and previous ranking:

Pl. Team		W	L	T	Pts	Pvs

1. Houston Texans (9) 9 1 0 346 1
2. San Fran 49ers (1) 7 2 1 326 4
3. Atlanta Falcons 9 1 0 321 2
4. Denver Broncos 7 3 0 313 5
5. Green Bay Packers 7 3 0 310 6
6. Baltimore Ravens 8 2 0 309 7
7. New England Pats (1)7 3 0 305 8
8. Chicago Bears 7 3 0 275 3
9. New York Giants 6 4 0 248 10
10. Seattle Seahawks 6 4 0 246 11
11. Pittsburgh Steelers 6 4 0 243 9
12. New Orleans Saints 5 5 0 235 13
12. Tampa Bay Bucs 6 4 0 235 13
14. Minnesota Vikings 6 4 0 201 15
15. Indianapolis Colts 6 4 0 196 12
16. Dallas Cowboys 5 5 0 192 16
17. Cincinnati Bengals 5 5 0 183 17
18. Washington Redskins 4 6 0 155 22
19. Detroit Lions 4 6 0 148 18
20. San Diego Chargers 4 6 0 140 19
21. New York Jets 4 6 0 123 26
22. Buffalo Bills 4 6 0 120 27
23. Tennessee Titans 4 6 0 111 23
24. Miami Dolphins 4 6 0 104 20
25. Arizona Cardinals 4 6 0 92 21
26. St. Louis Rams 3 6 1 81 25
27. Philadelphia Eagles 3 7 0 68 24
28. Carolina Panthers 2 8 0 60 28
29. Cleveland Browns 2 8 0 50 29
30. Oakland Raiders 3 7 0 33 30
31. Jacksonville Jags 1 9 0 26 32
32. Kansas City Chiefs 1 9 0 13 31

VOTING PANEL
Chris Berman, ESPN
Clifton Brown, Sporting News
Cris Collinsworth, NBC Sports
Rich Gannon, CBS Sports/SiriusXM NFL Radio
Bob Glauber, Newsday
Rick Gosselin, Dallas Morning News
Clark Judge, CBSSports.com
Ira Kaufman, Tampa Tribune
Pat Kirwan, SiriusXM NFL Radio/CBSSports.com
John Lynch, Fox Sports
Alex Marvez, Foxsports.com
Dan Pompei, Chicago Tribune

COMMENTS ON THE MINNESOTA VIKINGS (14)

Comments on the Minnesota Vikings by the AP Pro32 panel (ranking in parentheses):
Chris Berman (ESPN, 16) - Bye week a good thing. Remaining schedule is not.

Clifton Brown (Sporting News, 14) - To make playoffs, Christian Ponder must become more consistent.

Rich Gannon (CBS Sports/SiriusXM NFL Radio, 14) - Overachievers the first half of the season, can they keep it going with two games against Packers in December?

Bob Glauber (Newsday, 16) - Vikings come off bye with chance to take a huge step in the division. A win over Chicago, and they're in business. Looks like they might have to face Jay Cutler, though. Not easy with Bears in bounce-back mode after San Francisco embarrassment.

Rick Gosselin (Dallas Morning News, 13) - The Giants, Titans, Seahawks and Vikings all return from bye weeks - the final byes of the NFL season. Minnesota is the best of the four coming off byes with a 17-6 record. The Vikings play at Chicago Sunday.

Clark Judge (CBSSports.com, 15) - When I look at the rest of the Vikings' games I keep hearing the same words over and over: Look out below.

Ira Kaufman (Tampa Tribune, 15) - Still much to prove on the road to the NFC's No. 6 playoff seed.

Pat Kirwan (SiriusXM NFL Radio/CBSSports.com, 15) - On a bye last week and a chance to rest AP, who is running better than ever. Christian Ponder needs to be more consistent if they want to make the playoffs.

John Lynch (Fox Sports, 14) - Can QB Christian Ponder uphold his end of the bargain? He did last week and if he can do it, the Vikes are a good team. If not, on to next season.

Alex Marvez (Foxsports.com, 17) - How the Vikings fare the next three weeks against Chicago (twice) and Green Bay will determine Minnesota's postseason viability.

Dan Pompei (Chicago Tribune, 13) - Season starts now: at Bears, at Packers, and then Bears at home.

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