2017 NFL Power Rankings: Week 17
The pattern continues.
The Eagles edged the Jaguars to move into the top spot in our power ratings after Week 12, only to cede the position back to Jacksonville the following week. A week later, Philadelphia got back on top before again getting jumped by the Jags after their next game.
After a closer-than-expected Christmas Day win over the Raiders, the Eagles have regained that top spot, though the move had less to do with their win than Jacksonville’s loss.
Philadelphia’s nERD rating -- the number of points we would expect it to win by against an average team on a neutral field -- only increased by 0.27 points. The Eagles struggled to move the ball, averaging just 3.5 yards per play, while Nick Foles was held to 3.5 yards per drop back.
Jacksonville’s nERD fell by 2.29 points after its 44-33 loss in San Francisco, where the Jaguars were done in by three Blake Bortles' interceptions and a big day from 49ers quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo.
While Bortles’ poor performance may have confirmed suspicions that he could hold the team back in January, it was also the vaunted Jacksonville defense’s worst performance of the year.
The 49ers averaged 0.27 Net Expected Points (NEP) per play with a 53.5% Success Rate -- both or which were the best marks for a team taking on Jacksonville this year. (You can read more about NEP and Success Rate in our glossary.) Garoppolo, who is playing like one of the league’s best quarterbacks, passed his biggest test of the season, posting the top Passing NEP per drop back and Passing Success Rate marks of any quarterback to face the Jags this season.
Jacksonville, which is assured of being the No. 3 seed in the AFC playoffs, still owns the league’s best overall defense and pass defense as measured by opponent-adjusted NEP.
Here is how the rest of the league breaks down with one game remaining this year.