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NFL power rankings, Week 15: 49ers gain some ground coming down the home stretch

The 49ers took down the consensus top team in NFL power rankings with their win over the Seahawks. What does it mean coming down the home stretch? New to Niners Nation? Sign up here and join the discussion!

Brian Bahr

The San Francisco 49ers earned a huge win this past weekend, defeating the Seattle Seahawks 19-17. The win further secured the 49ers playoff positioning as they come down the home stretch of the 2013 season. The season has flown by and we are suddenly entering Week 15.

The 49ers have three winnable games to wrap up the season, but they can't yet afford to look ahead to the playoffs. I don't expect that to happen given that there is still a lot of ground to be gained. The 49ers can climb into the No. 5 seed if the Panthers lose another game, and the division still remains an outside possibility. For now, the 49ers just need to keep on winning football games and head into January as hot as can be.

This week, the 49ers face a Bucs squad that is quietly climbing in the power rankings. They are not going to the playoffs, but they have worked toward potentially saving Greg Schiano's job. The CBS rankings made a good point though. Do the players really want that? Early in the season, Schiano was looking like he would be the first coach fired in-season. Instead, his team has won four of five and his future appears a little more secure. The Bucs face a tough final three games, hosting the 49ers, then traveling to face the Rams and Saints. They are playing some tough football for now, however.

SB Nation NFL

1. Denver Broncos
2. Seattle Seahawks
3. New Orleans Saints
4. San Francisco 49ers
5. New England Patriots
6. Carolina Panthers
7. Cincinnati Bengals
8. Kansas City Chiefs
9. Arizona Cardinals
10. Detroit Lions

CBS Sports (Prisco)

1. Denver Broncos
2. New England Patriots
3. Seattle Seahawks
4. New Orleans Saints
5. Cincinnati Bengals
6. San Francisco 49ers
7. Kansas City Chiefs
8. Carolina Panthers
9. Philadelphia Eagles
10. Arizona Cardinals

1. Denver Broncos
2. Seattle Seahawks
3. San Francisco 49ers
4. New Orleans Saints
5. Carolina Panthers
6. Cincinnati Bengals
7. Kansas City Chiefs
8. New England Patriots
9. Philadelphia Eagles
10. Baltimore Ravens