Week Twelve Team Rankings

Are the Arizona Cardinals a product of an easy schedule or are they really as good as their record indicates? Which teams are moving up? Which teams are moving down? Scout.com's Adam Caplan breaks down all 32 teams from a performance and personnel standpoint.

1) New Orleans Saints: The injuries at cornerback are alarming and you can bet Tom Brady will go after whoever starts at that position on Monday night. They are continuing to get great balance on offense.

Last Ranking: 1

Needs Still to be Filled: RT (veteran depth), LT (veteran depth), DT (depth), DE (depth), SLB (veteran depth)


2) Indianapolis Colts: They are continuing to survive despite the various injuries in their secondary. RB Joseph Addai is showing tremendous versatility this season and has been able to stave off rookie Donald Brown.

Last Ranking: 2

Needs Still to be Filled: RT (veteran depth), SLB (veteran depth), WLB (veteran depth), CB (veteran depth)


3) Minnesota Vikings: The defense has played better since the bye and their run defense is starting to look dominant again. Getting back starting CB Antoine Winfield this week should help solidify the back end. Offensively, they can beat you so many ways. WR Sidney Rice could be the NFL's most improved player.

Last Ranking: 3

Needs Still to be Filled: C (veteran depth), MLB (veteran depth), WLB (veteran depth), SLB (veteran depth), S (veteran depth)


4) New England Patriots: The improved play from the secondary this season is a big reason why they will easily win the AFC East. QB Tom Brady is starting to show that his severe knee injury from last season is well behind him.

Last Ranking: 4

Needs Still to be Filled: QB (veteran depth), WR (veteran depth), G (veteran depth), ILB (depth)


5) San Diego Chargers: They're continuing to get it done on defense and defensive coordinator Ron Rivera deserves a lot of credit for the turn around. They are making a strong commitment to the running game despite veteran RB LaDainian Tomlinson's struggles. QB Philip Rivers is having perhaps his best season as a pro.

Last Ranking: 7

Needs Still to be Filled: LT (veteran depth), G (veteran depth), CB (veteran depth)


6) Arizona Cardinals: The newly found running game is really helping keep opposing defenses off balance. It will be interesting to see if their defensive improvement of late can continue against a much improved Titan offense.

Last Ranking: 8

Needs Still to be Filled: LT (veteran depth), C (veteran depth), DE (depth), CB (depth)


7) Cincinnati Bengals: They really should have won last week's game. The defensive breakdowns late weren't happening in previous weeks. They do need to get starting RB Cedric Benson soon in order to get the solid balance back on offense like they've had all season.

Last Ranking: 5

Needs Still to be Filled: LT (veteran depth), G (veteran depth), DT (depth), CB (veteran depth/nickel)


8) Dallas Cowboys: If it wasn't for their defense, this team might have a losing record. They must stay on schedule with the running game in order to take pressure off struggling QB Tony Romo.

Last Ranking: 9

Needs Still to be Filled: LT (veteran depth), OLB (pass rushing depth), CB (veteran depth), S (veteran depth)


9) Philadelphia Eagles: Donovan McNabb has looked better of late, but they need to find their screen game. That part of their offense has produced big plays in the past. The defense is doing fairly well despite some key injuries at linebacker and in the secondary.

Last Ranking: 11

Needs Still to be Filled: RB (veteran depth), LT (veteran depth), SLB (veteran depth), CB (veteran depth)


10) Pittsburgh Steelers: The absence of starting SS Troy Polamalu is very noticeable. It's amazing how much one player not being in the lineup makes such a difference. Offensive coordinator Bruce Arians needs to stay on schedule with the running game, especially when they have a lead.

Last Ranking: 6

Needs Still to be Filled: G (veteran depth), RT (veteran depth), LT (veteran depth), OLB (depth)


11) New York Giants: They still need to get better consistency out of the running game. Defensively, the secondary still is having big coverage problems on a weekly basis. It would help if they got a better pass rush.

Last Ranking: 13

Needs Still to be Filled: WR (veteran depth), RT (veteran depth), S (veteran depth upgrade)


12) Jacksonville Jaguars: Some would argue that they've benefited from an easy schedule. However, they're getting very good balance on offensive of late and when they do that, the Jaguars are tough to beat. The defense still needs to find a pass rush, but they are finding more discipline of that side of the ball. Getting starting CB Rashean Mathis back soon is a must as teams will continue to exploit his absence. They really need to sign a veteran cornerback for insurance.

Last Ranking: 16

Needs Still to be Filled: WR (veteran depth), DE (depth), OLB (veteran depth), ILB (veteran depth), CB (veteran depth)


13) Atlanta Falcons: They've been able to keep their running game on track despite missing starting RB Michael Turner of late. However, their defense has major issues in the secondary, which are preventing them from winning.

Last Ranking: 10

Needs Still to be Filled: LT (veteran depth), RT (veteran depth), DT (veteran depth), SLB (depth), WLB (depth), S (veteran depth upgrade)


14) Baltimore Ravens: After a hot start, their passing game has really regressed. Joe Flacco hasn't found his rhythm in several weeks. They must help him by upgrading at the receiver position next season. The absence of starting CB Fabian Washington will be tested against the strong Steeler passing game this week.

Last Ranking: 13

Needs Still to be Filled: G (veteran depth), ILB (veteran depth), CB (veteran depth), S (depth)


15) Denver Broncos: Reality is starting to catch up with this team. Their run defense is starting to fall apart and the lack of size in the front-seven is starting to show.

Last Ranking: 14

Needs Still to be Filled: LT (veteran depth upgrade), G (depth), S (veteran depth)


16) Green Bay Packers: The losses of OLB Aaron Kampman and CB Al Harris are huge to their defense. The key now is for them to run the ball better in order to keep those defensive injuries from being major issues going forward.

Last Ranking: 17

Needs Still to be Filled: QB (veteran depth), G (depth), DE (veteran depth), OLB (pass rushing depth), CB (veteran depth), S (veteran depth)


17) Tennessee Titans: As long as this team doesn't fall behind, they can limit the amount of throws that Vince Young has to make. As long as that happens and they run the ball well, they can continue to win.

Last Ranking: 18

Needs Still to be Filled: G (veteran depth), LT (veteran depth), RT (veteran depth), WLB (veteran depth), MLB (veteran depth), SLB (veteran depth)


18) Miami Dolphins: The loss of starting NT Jason Ferguson will likely show against teams that run the ball well. They've found their quarterback of the future in Chad Henne. He throws a good ball and he usually puts it only where his intended receiver can catch the ball.

Last Ranking: 19

Needs Still to be Filled: RB (veteran depth), G (veteran depth), LT (veteran depth), RT (veteran depth), NT (depth)


19) Houston Texans: The loss of starting TE Owen Daniels is starting to show. It also doesn't help that they can't run the ball consistently well. They need to find pass rushing help opposite Mario Williams.

Last Ranking: 15

Needs Still to be Filled: LT (depth), DE (veteran pass rushing depth)


20) Carolina Panthers: The injuries at linebacker are starting to take a major toll. And what has happened to veteran DE Julius Peppers the last few games?

Last Ranking: 20

Needs Still to be Filled: LT (veteran depth), RT (veteran depth), G (veteran depth), SLB (veteran depth), WLB (veteran depth), CB (nickel/depth)


21) San Francisco 49ers: We're starting to see that Alex Smith is an average quarterback with a less than average NFL arm. Their defense still lacks enough quality playmakers for this team to be better than they are.

Last Ranking: 21

Needs Still to be Filled: G (depth), RT (veteran depth), OLB (pass rushing depth)


22) New York Jets: Rookie Mark Sanchez has no business being their starting quarterback. He's lost and is playing too fast. The defense has suffered major slippage after a hot start. Look for some big changes next year on that side of the ball, especially in the secondary.

Last Ranking: 22

Needs Still to be Filled: WR (slot), G (veteran depth), RT (veteran depth), DT (depth), DE (depth), OLB (veteran depth)


23) Chicago Bears: Jay Cutler is in a funk of late and there are no signs that he's going to snap out of it. It would help if they could run the ball better to get better balance on offense.

Last Ranking: 23

Needs Still to be Filled: QB (veteran depth), G (depth), MLB (depth), WLB (depth)


24) Kansas City Chiefs: Despite an obvious lack of talent on both sides of the ball, head coach Todd Haley has this team playing hard each week. They must make major upgrades on the offensive line next season if they are going to win consistently. They also need major help at several positions on defense.

Last Ranking: 27

Needs Still to be Filled: LT (depth), G (depth), DE (depth), OLB (pass rushing depth), CB (veteran depth), S (depth)


25) Buffalo Bills: The tape job they have going on with the offensive line is starting to unravel. There's no plausible reason why Fred Jackson shouldn't be their starting running back. The lack of depth on defense is another reason why this team can't win consistently.

Last Ranking: 24

Needs Still to be Filled: TE (veteran depth), G (depth), OT (depth), WLB (veteran depth), SLB (depth)


26) Seattle Seahawks: The lack of frontline talent on both sides of the ball is a major reason why this team continues to underachieve. Defensively, they need to find a way to get more pressure on the quarterback.

Last Ranking: 25

Needs Still to be Filled: OT (depth), G (veteran depth)


27) Washington Redskins: They've been decimated by injury on their offensive line, yet starting QB Jason Campbell has shown improvement of late. The injuries at running back are also a major concern. They have to find a way to get more out of their young receivers. The personnel staff has to revamp the cornerback position next season.

Last Ranking: 29

Needs Still to be Filled: G (veteran depth), LT (veteran depth), G (depth), WLB (depth)


28) Detroit Lions: If they could just get their key offensive players healthy, this team could be more competitive. The secondary needs a major overhaul save rookie S Louis Delmas. They also need help at various areas in their front-seven.

Last Ranking: 28

Needs Still to be Filled: DE (veteran depth), DT (veteran depth), OLB (veteran depth)


29) Oakland Raiders: They are playing hard for head coach Tom Cable each week. They have to find a way to get better rhythm on offense. Defensively, they have to find a consistent pass rush and improve their run defense.

Last Ranking: 30

Needs Still to be Filled: G (depth), DT (depth), MLB (depth)


30) St. Louis Rams: Depth is really bad on both sides of the ball. The positives from this football team are that they play hard and they can run the ball well.

Last Ranking: 26

Needs Still to be Filled: WR (depth), LT (veteran depth), RT (depth), DT (veteran depth), SLB (veteran depth), WLB (veteran depth), MLB (veteran depth), CB (veteran depth)


31) Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Last week, Josh Freeman showed that he's truly rookie quarterback. Defensively, when is the last time a coordinator was removed this late in the season? Why not wait until after the season is over?

Last Ranking: 31

Needs Still to be Filled: WR (veteran depth), G (depth), C (depth), LT (depth), RT (depth), DT (veteran depth), DE (veteran depth), CB (depth/nickel), S (depth)


32) Cleveland Browns: At least the coaches let Brady Quinn throw the ball more than five yards last week. This is clearly team turmoil.

Last Ranking: 32

Needs Still to be Filled: WR (depth-speed), LT (depth), RT (depth), ILB (veteran depth), OLB (pass rusher), CB (veteran depth)


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