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Broncos edge Patriots on top of NFL Power Rankings

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Scott Cullen
1/3/2013 5:56:05 PM
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With 11 straight wins to finish the regular season, the Denver Broncos finish on top of the TSN.ca NFL Power Rankings, just ahead of the New England Patriots.

Of course, having the Broncos and Patriots -- the top two seeds in the AFC -- at the top of the rankings conjures up a potential playoff matchup with Peyton Manning's Broncos facing Tom Brady's Patriots in the AFC Title game.

There weren't any dramatic changes late in the season, as the top seven teams remained in the same spots as the week before, with the Washington Redskins flipping spots with the Cincinnati Bengals at eight and nine, respectively.

Two non-playoff teams, the Chicago Bears and New York Giants, were ranked ahead of the Indianapolis Colts, the only playoff team to give up more points than they scored this season.

The teams that finished the furthest from their preseason ranking?

Denver was ranked 13th in the preseason, a playoff bubble team; Seattle was ranked 17th, Washington was ranked 18th and Indianapolis was ranked 31st because you never know what you'll get with those rookie quarterbacks. Apparently it's okay to raise expectations for first-year signal-callers now.

Minnesota also surprised, going from 25th in the preseason to 11th in the final rankings, but that credit goes to Adrian Peterson and his healing powers.

On the other hand, the New Orleans Saints couldn't stop anyone, so there was no way they would keep their preseason rank of fourth; Philadelphia's collapse wasn't expected when they started 11th and Tennessee didn't improve nearly enough to justify their preseason slot of 14th.

Scott Cullen can be reached at Scott.Cullen@bellmedia.ca and followed on Twitter at http://twitter.com/tsnscottcullen. For more, check out TSN Fantasy on Facebook.

Peyton Manning DeMaryius Thomas (Photo: The Canadian Press)

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(Photo: The Canadian Press)
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