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Week 16 power rankings: Atlanta Falcons holding steady with playoffs in sight

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Fact: Matt Ryan still believes in Santa Claus

NFL: Atlanta Falcons at Tampa Bay Buccaneers Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

The Atlanta Falcons miraculously came away with a victory yesterday. Their situation isn’t complicated: beat the New Orleans Saints this week or the Carolina Panthers next week and their playoff-bound.

ESPN: 9th (up one)

The Falcons' offense isn't as potent as it was last season, but FPI still rates them as a top-five unit this year. That's thanks to a trio of four-time Pro Bowlers, led by Ryan (sixth in Total QBR) and Jones (third in receiving). 9th (up one)

The Falcons survived the Bucs. Is there a more appropriate way to describe Monday night's win? At times, the offense mirrored the track team from 2016. Then Matt Ryan would miss an easy throw, or an on-field connection between the reigning MVP and his intended receiver would be slightly off. Or maybe the audience would catch an errant F-bomb when somebody wasn't getting lined up.

CBS Sports: 9th (same)

That wasn't pretty in Tampa on Monday night, but now they have to regroup quickly for the big one at New Orleans. Where is Julio Jones in their offense?

Yahoo Sports: 9th (up two)

Devonta Freeman’s last 100-yard game was Sept. 24. He exploded on Monday night, with 126 yards rushing and 68 more receiving. Some of that was an increased workload with Tevin Coleman out, but Freeman is capable of getting very hot for a stretch, and maybe Monday was the start of that.

Sporting News: 9th (same)

The Falcons have a big opportunity to win the NFC South and build the type of momentum they had going into last year's playoffs. We know how that turned out.

This all seems about right. The Falcons are clearly an above-average football team but the concerns about untapped potential are well founded. Your thoughts?