By Hunter Jones, Christian Pundt, Thomas Paterniti

Welcome to the end of the road. Playoffs begin Wednesday y’all and then these Power Rankings won’t matter anymore. Your sense of self-worth will no longer be defined by a committee of four… it will be defined based on how many wins you can pick up in the do-or-die tournament or, if you’re a more unlucky fellow, how many splashes you can make in the off-season.

RankTeamRecord (Movement)Recap
1Baltimore Vultures
8 - 3 (0)The Baltimore Vultures beat the Houston Hyenas this week 52-22, improving their record to 8-3. As it stands now, while the Vultures are tied with two other teams at eight wins, they are the fourth seed due to the worst common games record among the three. The Vultures will finish their season playing the Queen City Corsairs, a team in the mix for the last wildcard spot.
2Alaska Storm
8 - 3 (0)Alaska is firing on all cylinders, and making those who doubted them look as silly off the field as they make their opponents look on it. This week’s victim was a Queen City team desperately fighting for their playoff lives, and unfortunately running into a meat grinder in the Storm. The 51-21 final score doesn’t do justice to how much of a beat down this was, as the Storm were up 42-7 at half time. 95 yds and a TD for HB Robert Merril, 66 yds and a TD for FB Jason Williams, WRs Jeff Comeau and Optimus Cline with over 100 yards and at least a receiving TD each, QB Ron Cockren with 383 yds and 4 TDs – you really couldn’t have scripted this any better for the Alaska offense. On defense it was a sack party, as the Corsairs were not ready for the bevy of blitzers Alaska threw at them. Alaska is looking like their old self again and their playoff opponents will certainly have their work cut out for them.
3Dallas Lobos
8 - 3 (0)The Dallas players and coaching staff get a week to rest up and prepare for a grudge match against the rival Oklahoma City Renegades in week 13. The game has minimal playoff implications, but it means a great deal for each team, and there is no doubt the players will be giving it their all on game day. Dallas has clinched a top 6 seed and are looking to stay in position to get as many home games as possible during the playoffs. This has been a breakout season for them and they’ll look to continue their winning ways when they resume play in week 13.
4New Orleans Pharaohs
7 - 4 (+1)The Pharaohs have been a stout team all season built on superstar offensive play and strength in numbers on defense. Their offense can go in any direction on any given week with a potent passing attack and a power running game. They carry a top end scoring offense and defense, both ranking in the top six league-wide, which is one of the more impressive totals in the SFL. They dropped a game they probably shouldn't have versus Tulsa in a close loss and they haven't been great at string together wins over a sustained period of time. Despite the inconsistency, New Orleans looks like a team primed to give some of the traditional heavyweights trouble and to win at least one playoff game.
5Denver Nightwings
9 - 2 (+1)The Nightwings were firing off some warning shots with that win. They boat-raced Indianapolis straight out of the building in a 26-0 shellacking of the Spitfire. Denver will carry the #8 scoring offense and the #4 scoring defense into the playoffs as the likely #1 seed and look to be peaking at the right time after they've put together their two most dominant victories of the season in back-to-back weeks. Mike Sawchuk and Nicholas Warner have truly broken out this season into some of the best players in the league and have certifiably provided Jarrod McChesney with a strong presence on the defensive end to compliment his amazing season running the ball. Denver has a real chance to make some noise if they can play their game and not get into a situation where they are forced to pass the ball (they have the lowest number of passing yards per game and have struggled to form an efficient passing attack over the course of the season).
6Sioux Falls Sparrows
7 - 4 (+1)After starting the season off at 1-4, Sioux Falls has come roaring back with 6 straight wins, their latest a 43-21 romp over Las Vegas to avenge their narrow loss to them in week 1. HB Colin Hart was unstoppable, rushing for 324 yds and 4 TDs, and the Sparrows defense stepped up in a big way, picking off Fury QB Thomas Ramen 5 times. Sioux Falls has a very winnable game this week as they travel to Indianapolis, and they will be laser focused to make it 7 wins in a row and to secure a top 6 spot in the playoffs.
7Tallahassee Pride
6 - 5 (-3)In a classic case of no, no, no, YES! Tallahassee gets shocked by San Francisco with a 27-24 loss only to find out shortly after that they hold all the tiebreakers and have clinched a playoff spot. The Pride have struggled with inconsistency this season, beating top-notch teams like Alaska and Dallas, destroying Baltimore twice (by the same exact score), but then losing headscratchers to San Francisco and Houston. Maybe that just speaks to the level of parity in the league. In any case, it will be interesting to see if they can pull it all together and make a run for their first title once the playoffs start.
8Mexico City Aztecs
8 - 4 (0)The Mexico City Aztecs ended their regular season with a 24-23 win over the Chicago Wildcats, finishing at 8-4. Currently the Aztecs are the fifth seed but it could change this week as there are currently three teams with an 8-3 record and two 7-4 teams as well. The Aztecs just get to take this week off and let the chips fall where they may.
9London Knights
6 - 5 (+1)London is just slowly creeping up on everyone. The Knights have won four of the last five (over quality teams too! They knocked off Denver just about a month ago among other teams that have been and are in the playoff hunt) and absolutely destroyed one of their primary playoff chase competitors week 5 when they trounced Chicago 42-14. Don't even think about writing off this London team that controls it's playoff destiny (well as much as you can given they need some help from Baltimore, a team that Queen City hasn't beaten in their last three meetings, all since coming back in Season 11) and is ranked as the #3 scoring offense in the league. If teams get into a ground and pound game with them then they will struggle as the Knights carry the #3 rushing offense in terms of yardage and the top overall rush defense in the whole league, while Rob Roby has shown an ability to play at a very level as a low volume point guard.
10Chicago Wildcats
6 - 5 (-1)The Chicago Wildcats were just two points away from putting themselves in a position to seal a playoff spot. They’re still in it as the last team in the wildcard, but if they lose this week, they’ll need some things to swing their way to hang onto that last spot. The Wildcats have the Tallahassee Pride this week too. It’ll be a tough one to win but the Wildcats have been trading wins and losses over the past four weeks so this would put them on track for a win.
11Queen City Corsairs
5 - 6 (0)After starting the season 5-1, Queen City has now lost 5 in a row by an average score of 35-16, and they’ll need to figure out how to stop that slide if they have any hopes left of making the playoffs. That won’t be easy with top-ranked Baltimore next on the docket. The Corsairs latest misadventure came at the hands of the Storm in the form of a 51-21 drubbing that was actually not as close as the score would indicate (the Corsairs were down 42-7 at half time). Whether it was falling behind early or simply a coaching choice, it certainly was odd to see a team built around a powerful rushing attack only run the ball 9 times for 35 yards. The Corsairs will have to find their identity quickly if they want to beat Baltimore and stay alive in season 12. But if they can accomplish this, the season starts anew in the playoffs.
12Las Vegas Fury
5 - 6 (0)Las Vegas went from first ranked frontrunner to fighting for their playoff lives this season, a plight punctuated by a 41-23 loss to Sioux Falls in week 12. QB Thomas Ramen threw 5 INTs and the Fury struggled early, falling behind 31-6 at the half before playing much better down the stretch. This week they play a must-win game against a Tulsa team that is already eliminated, but will be playing hard and trying to spoil the Fury’s postseason hopes. Las Vegas will have to protect the ball through the air and rely on HB Robert Redford on the ground if they hope to keep their season alive past Sunday evening.
13Tulsa Desperadoes
5 - 6 (+1)Another week in and we have further proof that AJ Jackson is the person to run this franchise. The offense took a big leap from Season 10 to 11 and much of that is due to her. Jackson is in a great position to make a Xander Gold-like leap in her sophomore year to the top echelon of QB talents. On the other end, the defense has struggled to the tune of being ranked 16th in scoring and being a bottom five pass defense in terms of yards allowed, despite noted talents in their secondary such as Kanye Rockafella, Charles Ball, Nate Hezlep, and Kyler Murray and one of the league's premier sack artists in Gib Leedoo. This team has been eliminated from playoff contention and clearly needs a few tweaks heading into the offseason, but they are well-positioned to return to Season 10 form next season.
14San Francisco Sharks
5 - 7 (+1)San Francisco notches a great win beating playoff-bound Tallahassee 27-24 in a gritty performance that saw them get 27 points despite scoring only 1 offensive TD. WR Gabriel Manning ran a kick back 95 yards for a score and on a wacky play that saw the snap on a punt fly over the punter’s head, one of the Sharks’ STers was “johnny on the spot” in the end zone for another much needed score. Overall, despite already being eliminated from playoff contention, the Sharks showed toughness and determination, which is a great sign for the team going forward and a great advertisement for potential free agents and rookies. Their 2 rushing yards loom large, and they will have to figure out how to run the ball effectively next season if they hope to improve going forward.
15Vancouver Legion
4 - 7 (-2)The Legion have emerged over the last few weeks as one of the more peculiar teams in the league. Tom Pepper leads the league in passing yardage per game by a substantial margin and Andy Hamilton, once again, has his defense as a top pass defense unit (this season, they allow the least amount of passing yards per game by nearly 20 yards over the second place contender). However, they have major struggles running the ball and are the second worst rush defense unit in the league (they, along with Las Vegas, are about 15 yards away from the rest of the pack). That looks to be a downfall as Vancouver has fallen to 4-7 with a game left in the season. This will be an interesting team to watch moving forward as Tom Pepper has once again openly contemplated retirement and, while possessing many strengths, look to need to shore up their weak points in order to make the jump.
16Atlanta Swarm
4 - 7 (+3)The Atlanta Swarm officially knocked the Oklahoma City Renegades out of playoff contention with a convincing 49-20 win. The Swarm sit at 4-7 and play the St. Louis Gladiators this week. Unfortunately, there’s no real story for this game as the Swarm obviously won’t be making the playoffs and the Gladiators have the No. 1 pick locked up so this will just be a game where both teams try to end off on a high note and maybe try some new things.
17Carolina Skyhawks
4 - 8 (-1)The Carolina Skyhawks ended their season with a loss to the St. Louis Gladiators this week, a team who hadn’t one since the opening week of the season. Ouch. At 4-8, they’re at least guaranteed a high draft spot. They currently sit at the No. 4 pick and could either move up or down depending on how this week shakes out.
18Oklahoma City Renegades
4 - 7 (-1)The Oklahoma City Renegades have officially been eliminated from the playoffs. They were going to need help to get in anyways, but there is nothing that can help them overcome seven losses. With this, the Renegades have officially had 10 losing seasons in a row. In both of their seasons having a winning record, however, the Renegades have made the championship.
19Houston Hyenas
3 - 8 (-1)The Houston Hyenas lost their game to the Baltimore Vultures 52-22, dropping down to 3-8 on the season. It’s been a rough year for the Hyenas, who until this season had made the playoffs all but one season in their existence. The Hyenas end their season against the Alaska Storm, the team that last season they fell just short against in the semifinals of last years playoffs. Maybe they can end the season with a win and avenge that loss.
20St. Louis Gladiators
2 - 9 (+1)Maybe we're just throwing St. Louis a bone here moving them up a spot despite finishing with the 20th ranked scoring offense and the 21st ranked scoring defense and having been noncompetitive for much of the back two-thirds of the season. Heck, they've been outscored by an average of 15 points per game (a full 8 points more than the next team on this list) and they haven't peaked at nearly the same levels as their contemporaries. But at the end of the day, St. Louis took home a big win this week over a rejuvenated Carolina team and looks to be a bit more stable moving forwards than the other teams here. They have a secondary that looks to have possibly finally gelled, a talented rookie quarterback (even if it has been a pretty rocky ride), and a direction. That, coupled with winning one of the more exciting games this last week, has the Gladiators jumping up a spot.
21Indianapolis Spitfire
3 - 8 (-1)And with that shutout loss to Denver, the Spitfire are once again at the bottom of the Power Rankings. It's been a particular rough second half in Indianapolis as they've lost five of their last six by an average 6.8 points while allowing an average of 34.2 That's an average of losing by four possessions each game. It's becoming increasingly clear there are major problems with this team. Despite that, the wildly inconsistent play of rookie QB TD Drew has plenty of room to believe in him moving forwards (he has authored some of the most outstanding games for any QB all season) and the continued excellence of undrafted free agent linebacker Brandon Haight has plenty of room for optimism moving forwards.