NFL power rankings, Week 12: 49ers assert their authority

Cary Edmondson-US PRESSWIRE

We break down Week 12 NFL power rankings following the 49ers domination of the Chicago Bears.

The 49ers wrapped up Week 12 of the 2012 NFL season in emphatic fashion on Monday as they thoroughly destroyed the Chicago Bears 32-7. The win moved them to the No. 2 seed in the NFC and has them climbing back into the third position in NFL power rankings. I think at this point the top three can be rotated to a certain extent depending on your personal preferences. Nobody is really pulling away from anybody else at this point, which could make for a fun January.

Heading into Week 12, we have quite a few excellent matchups on the docket. Our 49ers travel to New Orleans to face the improving Saints, while the Texans travel to face the Lions on Thanksgiving and the Falcons travel to face the surging Buccaneers. We could see a sweep by the three better records, but I think we see at least one loss in this group. Which one of course remains to be seen, but I think we see some changes in the top three of the power rankings.

SB Nation NFL

1. Houston Texans
2. Atlanta Falcons
3. San Francisco 49ers

Wow. The 49ers applied the beat down to the Bears. Colin Kaepernick looks like a starting quarterback. But so does Alex Smith. The 49ers have the league's best defense and a good problem to ponder: Two quarterbacks playing so well you don't know who to start.

CBS Sports

1. Houston Texans
2. Atlanta Falcons
3. San Francisco 49ers

That was an impressive butt-whipping against the Bears. Colin Kaepernick looked like the real deal. But this is Alex Smith's team this season.

FOX Sports

1. Houston Texans
2. Denver Broncos
3. Atlanta Falcons
4. San Francisco 49ers

The 49ers were good on Monday night, but were they too good without Alex Smith? I smell a quarterback controversy moving forward.

ESPN

1. Houston Texans
2. Atlanta Falcons
3. San Francisco 49ers

Playing in New Orleans is always tough, but the 49ers have the O-line, backs and scheme to run all over the Saints.

NFL.com

1. Houston Texans
2. Atlanta Falcons
3. San Francisco 49ers

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