Each week, 12 media members - including the Tribune's Ira Kaufman - rank teams in what is known as the Associated Press Pro32 Power rankings. Here is Kaufman's ballot:
1. Denver - An offense for the ages … with a point spread to match.
2. New Orleans - Welcomed Sean Payton back with open arms and open receivers.
3. Seattle - One week after staging a late rally, the Seahawks faltered in crunch time.
4. Indianapolis - Andrew Luck's road to Canton looks smoother every week.
5. Kansas City - Defense, special teams and smart QB play add up to a playoff formula.
6. New England - Time for Tom Brady to start another TD pass streak.
7. San Francisco - Back in the groove after a September stutter.
8. Green Bay - Best sight for Packers fans? An effective running game.
9. Cincinnati - Geno Atkins and company brought the heat.
10. Baltimore - Winning while Ray Rice continues to struggle.
11. Dallas - You would think 48 points would be enough.
12. Miami - Coming on, but they're not there yet.
13. Detroit - Still can't beat the Packers.
14. Chicago - Offensive line issues tormenting Jay Cutler.
15. Cleveland - Dumped Trent Richardson and shed their image as losers.
16. Tennessee - Not talented enough to overcome many mistakes.
17. Houston - Matt Schaub is feeling the heat.
18. San Diego - Can't compete for a playoff spot with a defense this soft.
19. Arizona - If the Chargers had Arizona's defense, they'd be dangerous.
20. New York Jets - Geno Smith's self-confidence never wavered.
21. Philadelphia - They'll win their fair share of shootouts.
22. Atlanta - Stunned owner Arthur Blank has some difficult decisions to make.
23. Minnesota - Josh Freeman's time is coming soon.
24. Buffalo - Bills fans couldn't have asked for more from rookie QB EJ Manuel.
25. St. Louis - Beating the poor Jags is hardly proof of a turnaround.
26. Carolina - Is Cam Newton steadily turning into Josh Freeman?
27. Washington - In the wacky NFC East, the Redskins could be on top by Sunday night.
28. Oakland - Terrelle Pryor shows just enough to keep Raider Nation intrigued.
29. Tampa Bay - Here comes Mr. Foles again, returning to the scene of the crime.
30. Pittsburgh - Perhaps the bye week served to inspire a proud franchise.
31. New York Giants - Can't block anybody, can't fool anybody.
32. Jacksonville - An 0-16 slate is starting to look like a realistic possibility.