1. New England Patriots (Last week: 2)
Impressive week one victory from the offense. Questionable performance from the defense. Antonio Brown put up some crazy numbers. This defense is not the same that it was last year but it will probably need to play a little better than it did on Thursday to keep winning games for the Pats.
2. Green Bay Packers (Last week: 3)
It wasn’t exactly convincing after a shaky start in Chicago but the Packers still got the win. James Jones is already proving to be a nice addition. However, giving up 141 yards on 24 carries to Matt Forte is concerning, especially with Sam Barrington set to miss the season.
3. Denver Broncos (Last week: 5)
It wasn’t pretty, but the Broncos got the job done. The offense is in limbo right now, trying to find it’s identity, but if the defense plays like it did against the Ravens, Denver won’t need much offense to win. The move up is more due to those in front of them floundering.
4. Indianapolis Colts (Last week: 1)
They came, they saw, they absolutely fell apart. The offense sputtered. The defense also look porous as Tyrod Taylor and the Bills ground game beat the Colts into submission. Next up, similar style team in the Jets and Luck will be without his favorite target T.Y. Hilton. Could this nightmare for Indy really continue?
5. Arizona Cardinals (Last week: 7)
Boy were the Cardinals happy to have Carson Palmer back. Of course, they also lost Andre Ellington in the process of Sunday’s win. Chris and David Johnson now have much bigger roles going forward in keeping this offense balanced.
6. Dallas Cowboys (Last week: 6)
Tony Romo came up clutch once again for America’s team in a huge win over the Giants. The win came at a hefty price though as Dez Bryant will now miss the next 4 to 8 weeks of play. That might just dash Dallas’ chances of repeating as division champs.
7. Seattle Seahawks (Last week: 4)
Rough does not even begin to describe week 1 for Seattle. The loss to the division rival Rams is bad enough. On top of that, the 49ers and Cardinals both had convincing wins against NFC opponents. Not how you want to open as defending NFC champions.
8. Kansas City Chiefs (Last week: 8)
The Chiefs started out on fire and then slowly cooled off the rest of the game. After scoring 27 in the first half, they failed to score again, while allowing the Texans to pull within a touchdown. If they can put two halves together of good football, they will beat Denver tomorrow.
9. Cincinnati Bengals (Last week: 13)
Beating up on the Raiders really isn’t that impressive but it is a lot better than having played a close game with Oakland. Cincy was firing on all cylinders this weekend. And with the struggles we saw from the rest of the AFC North, the Bengals have to be feeling good about themselves.
10. Buffalo Bills (Last week: 17)
So Rex Ryan moves to 2-0 against Andrew Luck after pulling off the upset of the week. The Bills looked legit as the defense lived up to its billing and the offense was effective. Now the real test comes in a visit to Foxborough on Sunday.
11. Miami Dolphins (Last week: 12)
Not the best season opening performance but it proved to be enough against Washington. The secondary came up big but that vaunted front seven got gashed for 161 yards. That needs to change and change quickly.
12. Philadelphia Eagles (Last week: 9)
They lost, but barely. Philly was in this game until the very end and were a Cody Parkey field goal away from stealing a win on the road in Atlanta. That running game needs a lot of work though if the Eagles want to stand a chance against Dallas this weekend.
13. Pittsburgh Steelers (Last week: 10)
Well they found out that not covering the best tight end in football was a bad idea. Rob Gronkowski torched the Steelers’ defense all night long. They are transitioning into a new system but it needs to happen a whole lot faster if Pittsburgh wants to return to the postseason.
14. San Diego Chargers (Last week: 16)
They got the win, but I still don’t trust them. San Diego needed a huge comeback to win week 1 and can be thankful that Phillip Rivers had enough poise to do it. Danny Woodhead might have scored two TDs but 3.2 yards per carry is not going to cut it from the running game.
15. Minnesota Vikings (Last week: 11)
Well I put my faith in Minnesota and they didn’t exact reward me for it. Teddy Bridgewater looked spastic trying to get the ball out in San Francisco and that Peterson guy did next to nothing on the ground. Defense and special teams kept the Vikings in it for as long as they could, but at some point the offense has to deliver.
16. Baltimore Ravens (Last week: 15)
My worries of the Ravens not having a receiver to turn to other than Steve Smith Sr. seem to be warranted. Marlon Brown led the team in receiving with 25 yards. It gets worse too with Terrell Suggs set to miss the whole season. And with all of that, they still almost beat Denver on the road.
17. Detroit Lions (Last week: 14)
I wondered which Matthew Stafford would show up and the answer was the extremely inconsistent one who costs his team football games. The Lions had a 21-3 lead in this game and blew it, partly because of Stafford, partly because of a defense that allowed 404 passing yards. Either way, not a good way to open the year.
18. Atlanta Falcons (Last week: 19)
Good first showing from the Falcons on Monday night. Dan Quinn has already left his mark on this vastly improved defense. Still a work in progress but off to a strong start. Oh and Julio Jones is a monster. You cannot leave that man in single coverage ever.
19. St. Louis Rams (Last week: 23)
The defensive line in St. Louis might just be the best in football. They sacked Russell Wilson six times on Sunday and just generally wrecked havoc. Nick Foles came up big too against a usually prolific secondary. The Rams showed they mean business this year.
20. New York Jets (Last week: 20)
Jets fans had to be a little scared after Johnny Manziel bombed a touchdown pass to Travis Benjamin to put Cleveland on top. New York didn’t panic though and calmly stuck with their game plan to run the ball and mix in the pass. And it worked.
21. San Francisco 49ers (Last week: 26)
Returning only half of their starters from a season ago? That didn’t seem to phase the 49ers as they simply dominated the Vikings. From the first drive of the game, San Francisco came out with something to prove. They still have some mistakes to clean up but it was a very good week 1 showing.
22. Houston Texans (Last week: 18)
So much for a legendary defense. The Texans buckled down in the second half but after allowing 27 points in the first half, the deficit was too much to over come. Oh and the quarterback controversy continues as Ryan Mallet came in and clearly out played Brian Hoyer after halftime.
23. Carolina Panthers (Last week: 24)
They won yes, but at a big price if Luke Keuchley winds up missing any time. Carolina’s offense looked to be fairing ok without Kelvin Benjamin, but they will need to protect Cam Newton with J.J. Watt and friends set to visit this week.
24. New York Giants (Last week: 22)
Well it was close to a win but that only counts in horseshoes and hand grenades. The Giants had a great chance to seal the deal but couldn’t punch it in. Apparently, they might not have wanted to score but New York still failed to stop Tony Romo, even without Dez Bryant, on the ensuing game-winning drive. So that plan obviously failed.
25. New Orleans Saints (Last week: 21)
Drew Brees lit it up against a strong Cardinals defense. Unfortunately, he got no help from the ground game as they managed 54 yards on 20 attempts. And if someone figures out what happened to the 2013 Saints defense, tell Rob Ryan cause they have been reeling ever since.
26. Cleveland Browns (Last week: 25)
There wasn’t much more you could’ve asked for out of Johnny Manziel in his first appearance of 2015. He was thrown in mid game and provided a spark for the Browns offense. He showed off his playmaking ability and, regardless of Josh McCown’s health, should be the starter moving forward.
27. Tennessee Titans (Last week: 31)
Role out the welcome wagon for Marcus Mariota, who lobbed four touchdown passes in the first half and actually got to take a seat with his team dominating the game. The Titans got off to a good start and could move to 2-0 if they can dispatch the lowly Browns.
28. Oakland Raiders (Last week: 27)
Raiders fans were praying Derek Carr’s injury wasn’t serious. For once, the Football Gods didn’t punish Oakland as Carr looks set to play this weekend. However, after watching what Baltimore did to Peyton Manning, Carr might want to think about taking the week off.
29. Chicago Bears (Last week: 28)
Well Jay Cutler certainly played like…well himself. Completing only 50 percent of his passes and throwing the game-clinching interception definitely didn’t do much to improve his standing with the Bears’ faithful.
30. Jacksonville Jaguars (Last week: 29)
Jacksonville always seems like it is gearing up to finally turn the corner, but never actually succeeds in doing so. Blake Bortles was sacked 5 times and threw two picks. The offense still has a lot of work to do before they start wining games.
31. Washington (Last week: 32)
Washington moves up, but only due to Tampa’s inability to play football. Alfred Morris showed he came ready to play on Sunday but now Washington must welcome the upstart Rams sans DeSean Jackson.
32. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (Last week: 30)
It couldn’t have gotten much worse for Tampa. Perceived as the favorite in this match up of the two worst teams from a season ago, the Bucs were blown out of the water by Tennessee. For whatever it’s worth though, Brett Favre also threw a pick six on his first career passing attempt.