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Wednesday, November 21, 2012
Pats stay at No. 8 in Power Rankings

By ESPNBoston.com

NFL Power Rankings
Despite throttling the Indianapolis Colts 59-24 in Week 11, the Patriots remained in the eighth spot in ESPN.com's most recent edition of its NFL power rankings.

It's likely that the loss of tight end Rob Gronkowski to a broken forearm kept the voters from pushing the Patriots any further up their respective polls, as is the fact that only one team that was ranked higher than the Patriots, the Chicago Bears, lost in Week 11.

As it stands, the Patriots are the fourth-best team in the AFC in the eyes of the voters, with Houston (1st), Baltimore (5th) and Denver (7th) checking-in ahead of them.

The Patriots will have their first shot at showing what the offense is capable of in Gronkowski's absence when they travel to New York to take on the Jets on Thanksgiving. That matchup will pit the AFC East's two highest ranked teams, as the Jets catapulted up four spots from 26 to 22 after upending the Rams on Sunday.

While the injury to Gronkowski is undoubtedly a blow to the team, the Patriots have a strong track record of finding replacement parts and continuing to succeed.

With that in mind, we deliver the question to you: from a rankings perspective, was the Patriots' impressive Week 11 win offset by the loss of Gronkowski, or is the team better than the eighth spot in your estimation? Chime in on the comments section below with your take.

To see the ranking in their entirety, click HERE.