by Mike Daggs, Queen City TE

Week 11 has arrived.  That means just ONE THING.  We’re TWO WEEKS away from the playoffs.  The race for the top 10 is getting heated, and there’s still so much that can happen over the next two weeks.  I’ve made an effort to break it all down for you here – who’s in, who’s out, who’s still got a shot, who’s done, and most fun of all – who gets to play spoiler for the teams still fighting to get in.  Without further ado – I present to you the WEEK 11 POWER RANKINGS!

10 - 001Tallahassee has been the #1 team since week 7. They were also #1 in week 5, dipping to #2 only for week 6. They still haven't lost a game. Their offense is far and away the best in the league. Their defensive line shreds their opponents and makes it impossible for them to keep up in scoring. If you had ANY doubt who'd be our #1 team this week, you've been living under a rock.
Sioux Falls
8 - 2+ 12The Sparrows impressive season continued last week as they beat the St Louis Gladiators. Their prize? Their highest ranking in this poll this season. They're doing it with grit and determination - their offense nor defense is in the top 5 in the league - but sitting at #2 in these polls and #3 in playoff positioning - who cares. Winning is winning, and the Sparrows continue to find a way to get it done.
8 - 2+ 13Alaska narrowly defeated the San Francisco Sharks last week and move back up to #3 in the Power Rankings. What's better - they're sitting at #2 in playoff positioning right behind Tallahassee. Not a bad place to be with only two games to go in the regular season. #2 scoring offense, #2 defense in points allowed, this team is going places.
8 - 2- 24One loss, Tulsa didn't drop from their perch at #2. Two losses, back to back no less, and they tie for the biggest drop of the week going down two positions to #4. Tulsa hasn't been this low in the rankings since week 4. But - they're still a top 5 team, so dropping to #4 really isn't all that shabby. Also at #4 in playoff ranking, Tulsa really isn't at risk of losing their playoff spot no matter how things play out.
San Antonio
7 - 305San Antonio beat up on the Dallas Ruffnecks last week and maintain their #5 ranking in both Power Rankings and playoff positioning. This week may prove more difficult as they face a Mexico City team that is fighting hard to earn their playoff spot. Much like Sioux Falls, San Antonio doesn't have the flashiest offense or defense in the league, but they're winning where it counts - the win column.
Queen City
6 - 4+ 26Queen City - up to #6 this week after winning their last home game of the season against London. Now they fly to Alaska in a critical cross conference matchup against the Storm, before flying to London to face the Knights again to wrap up the regular season. Sitting at #6 in the playoff race is great with two games to go - but there are FOUR TEAMS at 5 - 5 just waiting for them to slip. Critical matchup this week.
Mexico City
5 - 507Mexico City lost but stays at #7 in the power rankings. As much as Ray Bentley has been anxiously waiting for his coveted #8 power ranking spot, losing to Tallahassee didn't get it done. When you're the team that SHOULD HAVE WON almost beat Tallahassee last week you're still considered a powerful team. If you can BE CHEATED FROM VICTORY come that close to beating the #1 team, you're going to give anyone trouble.
5 - 5- 28Houston only lost to Vancouver by 3 points, but this was a critical matchup with playoff implications - losing this game means falling to #7 in the playoff chase with three other teams sitting at the same record as you. That knocked them down a couple pegs in the Power Rankings. This week they face the 4 - 6 San Francisco Sharks. The winner of this game will likely have a playoff spot after week 11, the loser will likely not.
5 - 5+ 19Atlanta nearly lost a critical matchup against Carolina but came back in epic fashion to win in the end. They've helped their playoff positioning - also at #9 - but like the other three teams in this group there is a bottleneck of 5 - 5 teams here at the bottom of the top 10 that could drastically flip around in the next two weeks. Good news / bad news for week 11 - they're playing Tallahassee... good news, if you win you'll shoot up the rankings as the first team to topple Goliath. Bad news, it's Tallahassee...
5 - 5- 110I mentioned last week that that Chicago was going to try playing spoiler for other teams. Score one for the Wildcats. The Red Devils lost by 6 in Chicago and fall to 5 - 5 along with the rest of the bottom half of our top 10. They're still in line for a wildcard spot - but they're in last place. Extremely tough matchup coming up in week 11 as they host the Sioux Falls Sparrows. It's a MUST WIN.
San Francisco
4 - 6011San Francisco is fighting hard to get into the playoffs after a slow start to the season, but they're on the outside looking in as they dropped the game last week against the Alaska Storm. Their adjustments for the second half of the season have been good - limiting turnovers and playing good defense. They'll need every ounce of effort they have left in the tanks as they visit Houston this week against a Hyena team ALSO fighting for a playoff spot. Houston is currently in, but if the Sharks beat them they could easily swap spots. This is the game of the week for me.
4 - 6+ 212Vancouver pulled off an impressive victory over the Houston Hyenas in week 10 to remain in the playoff discussion. They're currently on the outside looking in, but they have a matchup against Dallas this weekend that they SHOULD win, and they'll be closely watching the 5 - 5 teams hoping they all lose. With two weeks to go and so many teams in the 4 - 6 to 6 - 4 range (there's 7 of them for those of you wondering) anything could happen in these last two weeks for the teams in that group.
3 - 7- 113London, along with Chicago, St Louis, and Oklahoma City are technically not out of the playoff race yet. They're not mathematically eliminated, but they're getting close. Tough loss last week at the hands of the Queen City Corsairs. This week a potentially easier matchup as they visit Carolina, but the Skyhawks have been out for blood these last few weeks and are certainly hoping to play spoiler for everyone else. After that, a rematch against Queen City. Lose EITHER game, and they're out.
3 - 7+ 114Chicago won their 3rd game of the season to stay in the playoff discussion, and of course to play spoiler to everyone else. This week they visit Oklahoma City - the loser of this game will be eliminated from the playoff race. How hard do you think these two teams will be playing this weekend? Comparing stats, these two teams are incredibly evenly matched. Nobody wants to sit at home for the playoffs - expect a crazy good game.
St. Louis
3 - 7- 215St Louis started so strong and then fell so hard. But it's not over. Winning this weekend against Tulsa is critical though - as if they don't, they're done. If they do manage to win, and Oklahoma City manages to beat Chicago this weekend, then it would set up potential "winner takes all" battle in week 12 between the two teams. But first thing is first, St Louis, you need to keep Tulsa's losing streak going and server them with loss #3.
Oklahoma City
3 - 7+ 116Oklahoma City not only wanted to play the role of spoiler - but they want to still be talked about for playoff positioning. Well outside of it at the moment - but climbing. This weekend's matchup isn't just critical - it's a must win. The loser is officially eliminated. If they do manage to win, they may once again have a win or go home situation in week 12 against St Louis. At this point, there's too many moving pieces with the other teams to say for sure - but the main point to take home is they need to win out.
2 - 8- 117Carolina is now officially eliminated from the playoffs. But that doesn't mean their fun is done. They host London this weekend and hope to end their season as well. They nearly beat Atlanta last week - but as any Carolina fan will tell you they nearly beat a lot of teams this season. They just can't seem to seal the deal when the 4th quarter ticks to zero. But playing the role of spoiler will still give them motivation to bring it on Sunday - should be a great game against the Knights.
1 - 9018Dallas also has been officially eliminated from the playoffs, but that also means they're officially a team to watch to ruin the plans of another team. Vancouver, for example, heads to Dallas with visions of playoff appearances dancing through their heads. Vancouver needs to win, and they need some help from other teams. If Dallas can pull off the win, Vancouver's playoff hopes may just be dashed. Same for Houston in week 12 - the Hyenas may be holding on by a thread at that point and Dallas could send them to the couch as well. Still something for Dallas fans to cheer for!