New England Patriots continue moving up ESPN’s NFL Power Rankings

New England Patriots (Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images)
New England Patriots (Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images) /

The New England Patriots moved up ESPN’s NFL Power Rankings for the second consecutive week.

The New England Patriots got back on track in Week 12 against the New York Jets. With both teams coming off their bye week and suffering embarrassing losses in Week 10, you knew this would be a tightly contested game.

The Jets, as they usually do at least once a season, played the Patriots tough throughout most of the game. The teams were tied at 10 going into halftime, but the Patriots broke away in the second half.

New York ran out of steam, while New England picked things up. The Patriots would score on three of their drives, which chewed up 13:06 of the second half. The Jets would manage only one field goal, as the Patriot defense stepped up in the second half.

The slow first half could be chalked up to some rustiness, as the statistics show that this was a game that was never really close.

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New England dominated time of possession, having the ball for 34:26 compared to 25:34 for the Jets. They also outgained Gang Green by 150 total yards, resulting in a 25-18 edge in first downs as well. The lone turnover of the game was an interception thrown by Josh McCown, who was also sacked twice compared to zero sacks absorbed by Tom Brady.

With the victory, the Patriots evened up their record at 3-3 on the road. They handled their business, and as a result, continue to move up ESPN’s NFL Power Rankings.

Last week, New England moved back into the top-10 despite being on their bye week courtesy of the Los Angeles Chargers surprising loss to the Denver Broncos. The Broncos pulled off yet another upset in Week 12, knocking off the visiting Pittsburgh Steelers to help the Patriots move further up the rankings.

This week, the Patriots come in at No. 4. It is difficult to envision them moving up much more than that, as the Kansas City Chiefs, Los Angeles Rams and New Orleans Saints, the No. 3-1 teams respectively, continue to play great football.

However, with five weeks remaining in the season, and some difficult games ahead, there could be some shuffling done in the top-five. You never know what could happen, but the Patriots have to be happy knowing they control their own destiny.

Next. Patriots Put Away Jets With Dominant Second Half. dark

With the Steelers loss to the Broncos, the Patriots are now in the No. 2 spot in the AFC. A big game against the Steelers looms large in Week 15, as the Patriots will head out on the road to face Pittsburgh in what could decide home-field advantage in the postseason.