Ahead of Week 17 of the 2019 NFL season, there are 15 teams that have either clinched a spot in the playoffs or are still alive entering the final weekend of the season. Here are RADIO.COM's NFL Power Rankings for the final week of the regular season:
1. Baltimore Ravens (Last Week: No. 1)
The Ravens have nothing to play for in Week 17 - other than to attempt to keep the division-rival Pittsburgh Steelers out of the playoffs. The Ravens have clinched the No. 1 overall seed in the AFC and home-field advantage throughout the playoffs. Lamar Jackson is all but certain to win the 2019 NFL MVP. An effective bye week in Week 17, and an actual bye week on Wild Card Weekend will be a good thing for the 13-2 Ravens, as they attempt to get Mark Ingram II and Mark Andrews as healthy as possible for a possible Super Bowl run.
2. San Francisco 49ers (Last Week: No. 4)
From here, the 49ers would be best suited of all NFC contenders to make a deep playoff run on the road. Of course, if they can avoid having to play a road game at all, that would be ideal. The 49ers enter Week 17 at 12-3, in control of the top spot in the NFC after an overtime victory over the Los Angeles Rams and a surprising loss by the Seattle Seahawks. With the division - and No. 1 seed - on the line, the 49ers will travel to Seattle in Week 17. The guess here is they'll be victorious against a banged up Seahawks team.
3. New Orleans Saints (Last Week: No. 2)
While the Saints as a team seem to be less scary on the road than at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome, Michael Thomas' greatness travels. Thomas had 12 catches for 136 yards and a touchdown in a 38-28 Saints' win in Tennessee, one that saw them erase an early 14-0 deficit. As they compete for playoff positioning in Week 17, Thomas has a chance to add onto the 145 catches he has in 2019, which is already an NFL record.
4. Kansas City Chiefs (Last Week: No. 5)
It may be too much to ask for the Miami Dolphins to defeat the New England Patriots in Week 17, but if that happens and the Chiefs take care of business against the Los Angeles Chargers, they'll slide into the No. 2 seed. For as nice as a first-round bye would be, a win over the Chargers would secure the No. 3 seed for the Chiefs, meaning they would host whoever wins the final AFC Wild Card spot in the first round of the AFC playoffs.
5. Green Bay Packers (Last Week: No. 6)
In a Week 16 Monday Night Football matchup with the Minnesota Vikings, the Packers' defense stole the show. Yes, the Vikings were without Dalvin Cook, but the Packers still limited an offense that included Kirk Cousins, Stefon Diggs and Adam Thielen to just seven first downs. Za'Darius Smith and Kenny Clark combined for four-and-a-half sacks of Cousins in a 23-10 Packers win. A year after winning just six games, the Packers are in the race for the No. 1 seed entering the final weekend of the season.
6. New England Patriots (Last Week: No. 8)
For as much concern as there has been about the Patriots in the second half of the 2019 season, they're a win over the Miami Dolphins in Week 17 away from going 13-3 and clinching the No. 2 seed in the AFC. It's fair to wonder if they have enough offensively to compete with the Baltimore Ravens and Kansas City Chiefs in the postseason, but that this team is even in a position to have a first-round bye in the AFC playoffs is pretty remarkable.
7. Seattle Seahawks (Last Week: No. 3)
The story of Marshawn Lynch coming back is cool, and he did average 4.2 yards per carry last season with the Oakland Raiders, so there's reason to think that the 33-year-old may still have something to give. That said, to lose C.J. Prosise and Chris Carson for the season ahead of a Week 17 showdown with the San Francisco 49ers for the NFC West title is certainly sub-optimal. The 11-4 Seahawks, coming off of a surprising loss to the Arizona Cardinals, will also be without left tackle Duane Brown. The power of Russell Wilson and Pete Carroll can make up for a lot, but it doesn't feel like the Seahawks are peaking as the playoffs loom.
8. Houston Texans (Last Week: No. 10)
Despite having already clinched the AFC South, the Texans are seemingly very motivated to try to win in Week 17. They're hosting the division-rival Tennessee Titans, the second time in three weeks that the two sides will meet. Not only could the Texans knock the Titans out of the postseason potentially, but they could also move up to the No. 3 seed if things fall their way. With a win over the Titans, a Pittsburgh Steelers' win in Baltimore and a Kansas City Chiefs' loss against the Los Angeles Chargers, the Texans could slide into the No. 3 seed. In the No. 3 seed, the Texans would (probably) host the Pittsburgh Steelers on Wild Card Weekend, as opposed to the most likely scenario, that they are the No. 4 seed and host the Buffalo Bills on Wild Card Weekend.
9. Buffalo Bills (Last Week: No. 9)
Of the Bills' 10 wins in 2019, just two have come when the opposing team has scored 20 or more points. Both of those wins have come against the Miami Dolphins. For as great as the Bills' defense is - they're the No. 3 overall unit - they may need to open things up more offensively to win in the postseason, especially if they play any of the Baltimore Ravens, Houston Texans or Kansas City Chiefs at any point.
10. Minnesota Vikings (Last Week: No. 7)
With Dalvin Cook out, Kirk Cousins threw for just 122 yards in a 23-10 loss to the Green Bay Packers that saw the Vikings complete just seven first downs. At 10-5, the Vikings have clinched a playoff spot already. They'll need Cook back - and a much better performance from Cousins and a very talented offense - to win even one playoff game, though.
11. Philadelphia Eagles (Last Week: No. 15)
The Eagles can't take Daniel Jones, Saquon Barkley and the New York Giants lightly in Week 17, but they are a win over a 4-11 team from capturing the NFC East crown. What's scary is they may start to get some of their weapons back. Jordan Howard, who has averaged 4.4 yards per carry in nine games, will return in Week 17. If things get really crazy, DeSean Jackson could return in the divisional round of the NFC playoffs.
12. Tennessee Titans (Last Week: No. 11)
For the second time in three weeks, Ryan Tannehill and the Titans will face the division-rival Houston Texans. Should they win in Houston, they'll win the second Wild Card spot in the AFC. Despite the Texans having already clinched the division, they probably won't roll over. Beyond not wanting to let a division-foe into the playoffs, the Texans still have an outside shot at moving up to the No. 3 seed in the AFC postseason.
13. Pittsburgh Steelers (Last Week: No. 12)
There are other scenarios, but the simplest one is this - the Steelers will need to defeat the Robert Griffin III led Baltimore Ravens and have the Tennessee Titans lose in Houston, against a Texans team that has already clinched the AFC South. If they miss the playoffs, it will be because they didn't have enough offensive firepower to overcome the loss of Antonio Brown, and Ben Roethlisberger's season-ending injury early in the 2019 season. Minkah Fitzpatrick and Devin Bush have given the Steelers an elite defensive unit, one that's put them on the cusp of the postseason, despite a lack of continuity on offense.
14. Dallas Cowboys (Last Week: No. 13)
It's certainly not impossible that the Cowboys defeat the Washington Redskins at home, and get an assist from the New York Giants, as they host the Philadelphia Eagles, who are currently at the top of the NFC East. That scenario, while not impossible, doesn't feel likely, though. Assuming that the Cowboys miss the playoffs - or even if they sneak in and are eliminated in the first round - Jason Garrett's time as the team's head coach is likely over. If the organizational power structure, which is centered around Jerry Jones, isn't going to change, it will be interesting to see how much interest there is in what should theoretically be one of the best jobs in sports.
15. Oakland Raiders (Last Week: No. 20)
As noted by ESPN's Football Power Index, there's still a 13.2 percent chance the Raiders make the playoffs. They'll need a Christmas miracle, though, as they need to defeat the Broncos in Denver, have the Lamar Jackson-less Baltimore Ravens defeat the Pittsburgh Steelers, the Houston Texans beat the Tennessee Titans and have the Indianapolis Colts win in Jacksonville. On top of all of that, the New England Patriots, Kansas City Chiefs, Detroit Lions or Chicago Bears need to win. It's not impossible, but the most likely scenario is that the Raiders finish 7-9 and 8-8 and out of the playoffs. That said, given that they had one of the most tumultuous preseasons in NFL history, going 7-9 or 8-8 would give them something to build off of as they move to Las Vegas.