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What they're saying: Bills make a jump in the NFL power rankings


RANK 12: BILLS. LeSean McCoy's thumb injury obviously isn't good news, but Mike Gillislee has played well when called upon. Sunday he had 72 yards on 14 carries. He is averaging 5.8 yards per carry this season. The Bills don't want to play without McCoy, but it's not a crushing blow if he has to miss more time.

RANK 12: BILLS. Sunday marked the fifth time this season the Bills have finished with fewer than 200 yards passing. They're 4–1 in those contests, as strong a hint as any that this team typically goes as its run game and defense go. Week 12's home game against Jacksonville is must-win, both for the Bills' playoff chances and Rex Ryan's status.​

RANK 13: BILLS. Rex Ryan asked Marvin Lewis for a gift -- and the football gods gave it to him. No A.J. Green to deal with, as the Bengals' star wideout went down with a hamstring injury on the opening drive of the game. Hate seeing Green go down, but fortunately, the injury doesn't appear as bad as initially thought. And hey, the football gods kinda owed Ryan a favor (or 35). No team in pro football has been beset with more injury problems to key players this season than the Bills. Ryan's squad stuck it out Sunday on the road, thanks to timely defense and a stout run game -- despite yet another injury to LeSean McCoy. That said, Tyrod Taylor has to make that third-and-5 completion to Percy Harvin on the final Bills drive. Jeff Tuel could have made that throw. EJ Manuel could have made that throw. Joe Ferguson could have made that throw. Joe Ferguson -- right now, at age 66 -- could have made that throw. Still, nice win, #BillsMafia. Click here for a sweet pic of the final-play scrum.

RANK 14: BILLS. Rex Ryan thinks the Jaguars are a great two-win team; many would say that the Bills are an average-at-best five-win team.


Bleacher Report – Chris Simms' NFL Power Rankings Ahead of Week 12](


Current record: 5-5

Last week: 19 ( 4)

Even after a Week 11 victory, Rex Ryan can't be feeling good about his team's chances.

His offense, already devoid of big-time talent, just lost two more. Both LeSean McCoy (thumb) and Robert Woods (knee) were forced into early exits against the Bengals. Add them to the pile of shelved playmakers if they can't go next week.

Ryan's defense didn't fare much better. It allowed the Bengals to score in both of their red-zone trips—without A.J. Green. It was smacked with penalties; the team was flagged nine times for 75 yards.

Ryan's team won its Week 11 battle. But it might've lost the war to gain entrance to the AFC playoff field.

Looking forward: Loosen that arm, Tyrod Taylor. You'll have to throw the Bills past the Jaguars; it's no easy showdown for Buffalo.

RANK 16: BILLS. Buffalo's win against the Bengals was one of the ugliest games of the season as two teams unlikely to make the playoffs faced off. The Bills may be 5-5 and just one game behind the Dolphins for second in the AFC East, but it'll likely take a division title to reach the playoffs. The AFC West is strong and likely to get two teams into the postseason. Does anyone actually think the Bills can surpass the Patriots? Probably not.

RANK 17: BILLS. The Bills actually boast the top rush offense in the NFL, leading in yards per game, yards per rush and touchdowns, which has kept the team in the playoff hunt. The Bills will look to run all over the Jaguars to get back over .500 this week.

Power Rankings: Which NFL playoff contenders are making moves—up and down—in Week 12? (by @ChrisBurkeSI) — SI NFL (@si_nfl) November 23, 2016

RANK 17: BILLS. The Bills can climb back above .500 with a victory Sunday at home over the Jaguars. It still seems possible for them to reach 9-7. But even that probably wouldn't be enough to qualify for the playoffs as an AFC wild card.

RANK 18: BILLS. Rex Ryan got a few more breaks for his defense in Cincinnati, with the Bengals' offense having two unhealthy key playmakers. As for Buffalo's own offense, the 1-2 punch of LeSean McCoy and Robert Woods getting hurt is a pile-on. They could really use a spark from Sammy Watkins and/or Percy Harvin. This week: vs. Jaguars, Sunday

RANK 21: BILLS. They snapped a three-game losing streak by beating the Bills, but they could be without LeSean McCoy this week. That will hurt.

RANK 22: BILLS.  Rex Ryan's teams don't necessarily have a reputation for being overly disciplined, but no squad has fewer turnovers than Buffalo's six.

Other comments ...

5. Buffalo Bills (5-5)

Playoff odds: 30.2 percent

The unlucky Bills finally caught a break: After going 0-4 in games decided by a touchdown or less this season, they did enough on offense and took advantage of the injuries to Green and Bernard to beat the Bengals 16-12. (It didn't help the Bills, to be fair, when they lost Shady McCoy to a thumb injury, although Mike Gillislee was effective in McCoy's absence.) It wasn't pretty, but the Bills did enough to win in Cincy.

The Bills also will be favored this upcoming week, when they face the Jaguars at home in Buffalo, but it's tough to see that turning into a winning streak, as they travel to Oakland in Week 13. The good news: Four of their final six games are at home, including tilts against the Jags and Browns, and the other road trip is to face the lowly Jets in Week 17. The problem is they don't hold up well in tiebreakers. The Bills already have lost to wild-card contenders such as the Ravens and Dolphins, and they're 2-4 in AFC contests so far this year. The Raiders, Steelers and Dolphins tilts will be critical as the Bills try to sneak in with a 9-7 or 10-6 record.

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