NFL rating game

1. ATLANTA (8-0)

Last week: 1st

Will the undefeated run come to an end on Sunday?

2. HOUSTON (7-1)

Last week: 2nd

Huge, huge game on the road looms in Soldier Field.

3. CHICAGO (7-1)

Last week: 5th

Defense has fueled nice run in first half of the season.

4. SAN FRANCISCO (6-2)

Last week: 4th

Coming off a bye, they’re ready to start rolling again.

5. GREEN BAY (6-3)

Last week: 6th

They’re strengthening their position if Bears slip up.

6. N.Y. GIANTS (6-3)

Last week: 3rd

They’ll be kicking themselves later for that last loss.

7. NEW ENGLAND (5-3)

Last week: 7th

Facing defenseless Bills is good way to come off bye.

8. BALTIMORE (6-2)

Last week: 8th

Injuries decimated their defense, but they’re winning.

9. DENVER (5-3)

Last week: 9th

The offense’s comfort level with Peyton is growing.

10. PITTSBURGH (5-3)

Last week: 10th

That comeback win over Giants on road was huge.

11. SEATTLE (5-4)

Last week: 12th

If they can be more consistent, they’d be real good.

12. INDIANAPOLIS (6-3)

Last week: 18th

No one could have envisioned this after last season.

13. DETROIT (4-4)

Last week: 17th

They’re trying to make a move in a tough division.

14. MINNESOTA (5-4)

Last week: 11th

It’s starting to go bad after that unexpected 4-1 start.

15. SAN DIEGO (4-4)

Last week: 15th

Could rolling the hapless Chiefs straighten them out?

16. MIAMI (4-4)

Last week: 14th

They need to find a groove after bring up and down.

THE SECOND HALF

17. Philadelphia (3-5) Last week: 13th

18. Dallas (3-5) Last week: 16th

19. Tampa Bay (4-4) Last week: 23rd

20. Arizona (4-5) Last week: 19th

21. New Orleans (3-5) Last week: 26th

22. Cincinnati (3-5) Last week: 20th

23. Washington (3-6) Last week: 21st

24. Oakland (3-5) Last week: 24th

25. N.Y. Jets (3-5) Last week: 25th

26. Tennessee (3-6) Last week: 22nd

27. St. Louis (3-5) Last week: 27th

28. Carolina (2-6) Last week: 30th

29. Buffalo (3-5) Last week: 29th

30. Cleveland (2-7) Last week: 28th

31. Jacksonville (1-8) Last week: 31st

32. Kansas City (1-7) Last week: 32nd

GAME TO WATCH

Houston (7-1)
at Chicago (7-1)

7:20 p.m. Sunday, Soldier Field (NBC)

This is a matchup you don’t see very often. In fact, they have played just twice since the Texans entered the NFL in 2002 — winning both meetings. With a primetime audience looking on, both teams will be trying to make a statement in this game, which could be a preview of Super Bowl XLVII.

MICK’S PICKS

Saints (+2 1/2 ) over Falcons

Patriots (-11) over Bills

Giants (-4) over Bengals

Chargers (+3) over Bucs

Broncos (-4) over Panthers

Dolphins (-6) over Titans

Ravens (-71/2) over Raiders

Lions (-2) over Vikings

Seahawks (-6) over Jets

Cowboys (-11/2) over Eagles

49ers (-111/2) over Rams

Bears (-1) over Texans

Steelers (-121/2) over Chiefs

Last week: 9-4-0 (.692)

Season totals: 61-59-3 (.508)

TV SCHEDULE

Sunday’s games

Noon: Falcons at Saints (Fox)

3:05 p.m.: Jets at Seahawks (CBS)

3:25 p.m.: Cowboys at Eagles (Fox)

7:20 p.m.: Texans at Bears (NBC)

Monday’s game

7:30 p.m.: Chiefs at Steelers (ESPN)

Sheldon Mickles