2019 NFL Power Rankings: Week 2

The first weekend of NFL action is officially in the books. The defending champs looked unstoppable, Patrick Mahomes was cruising once again, a lot of former No. 1 picks struggled and we got an early game of the year candidate on Monday Night Football. It was a wild first week. The Dolphins look like they will be hard to beat … in the race for the first overall pick. Lots of rookies made debuts. Overall, it was just really nice to have meaningful NFL football back.

With this being just the second week of rankings there is a ton of movement right now, as NFL teams look to establish the new hierarchy for the 2019 season. As a result, we have a completely reshuffled top 10, including a new top team. When I last published power rankings, Antonio Brown was still in Oakland, otherwise the Pats would have been the number one team. Check out where every team stands after one week of NFL games.

Patriots Logo

1. New England Patriots: 1-0 (Last Week: 2)
Talk about dominance. The Patriots looked to be on another level with an incredible showing against the Steelers. Tom Brady was in midseason form. The defense kept Ben Roethlisberger on the run all night and stonewalled the Pittsburgh ground game. In the past, we’ve seen New England take a few weeks to get into gear, but with this performance and the addition of Antonio Brown on the horizon, there is legitimate talk of this team challenging the 2007 Patriots.

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2. Kansas City Chiefs: 1-0 (Last Week: 4)
Turns out Patrick Mahomes was ready to pick back up right where he left off. He tore apart the Jaguars defense on Sunday, while missing his most explosive receiver in Tyreek Hill for majority of the game. Sammy Watkins might like to debate that most explosive tag as well after he put up a ridiculous nine-catch, 198-yard, three-touchdown statline. Kansas City did allow Gardner Mishnew to do a lot of damage after replacing an injured Nick Foles, so there is room for improvement. Also, that LeSean McCoy signing is looking pretty good for them right now after his 81 yards on 10 carries. This offense is flush with playmakers even in Hill’s absence.

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3. New Orleans Saints: 1-0 (Last Week: 3)
That. Was. Stunning! New Orleans rebounded in the best way possible from the awful endings to the past two seasons with an emotional comeback. Drew Brees looked in fine form, despite the uncharacteristic interception early on. The Saints definitely started slow, but played their best when it mattered. There is a lot to like about the pass rush as well with six sacks. Allowing the almost game-winning touchdown on just two plays signals the defense has a ways to go, but escaping with a win is important.

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4. Los Angeles Rams: 1-0 (Last Week: 1)
It was a season-opening win for the Rams, but far from a convincing one. The timeshare at running back actually worked quite well, but Jared Goff did not have his best game. Los Angeles did just enough to hold off a surging Carolina team it had held without a touchdown for the first thirty minutes. This team has a ton of talent and it managed to avoid a complete Super Bowl hangover, but the Rams didn’t look sharp in the process. With a visit from the still probably pretty upset Saints after last year’s game coming up, Sean McVay has a lot of work to do.

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5. Los Angeles Chargers: 1-0 (Last Week: 7)
It was far from a comfortable win for this Chargers team, but it still counts. Los Angeles looked explosive on offense both through the air and on the ground. There are questions to be asked of the defense though that allowed a number of big plays of its own. Austin Ekeler and Justin Jackson made everyone forget about Melvin Gordon and Philip Rivers played almost flawless, save an incredible interception by Malik Hooker. It was a solid start, but the Chargers will need to play even better to compete with the Chiefs.

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6. Minnesota Vikings: 1-0 (Last Week: 10)
Meet Kirk Cousins, the game manager. Cousins threw the ball 10 times. That’s it. He played the whole game and attempted 10 passes. Minnesota ran the ball 38 times for 172 yards and three touchdowns, including one by Cousins himself. Dalvin Cook flashed the potential he has when healthy and Alexander Mattison impressed in his debut. You might be a bit bummed if you have Adam Thielen or Stefon Diggs on your fantasy team, but this ball control offense looks like it might just work. It kept Atlanta out of rhythm and took a ton of pressure off the defense.

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7. Philadelphia Eagles: 1-0 (Last Week: 6)
Slow starts seem to be pretty typical for the Eagles under Doug Pederson. Sunday was no exception as Washington jumped all over the opportunity to build an early lead. Philly stayed the course though and chipped away. If not for a late, meaningless (well it was meaningful in Vegas) touchdown, the Eagles would have capped off a double-digit victory. Carson Wentz played great and Philadelphia ran the ball well. There is still a lot to be desired from that secondary though after allowing Case Keenum and a bunch of unproven receivers to rack up 380 yards.

Packers logo8. Green Bay Packers: 1-0 (Last Week: 12)
If you had told me the Packers were only going to managed 10 points in Chicago, I would’ve expected the Bears to win comfortably. Instead, the Green Bay defense showed up in a big way, holding the Mitchell Trubisky and company out of the end zone. Considering the fact the Pack only managed 213 yards of total offense, that was crucial. It was a slog of a game, but Green Bay’s defense played better than it did at any point last year. The offense will probably pick it up a bit, as pretty much any matchup other than the Bears will be a bit easier.

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9. Chicago Bears: 0-1 (Last Week 5)
Welcome back down to Earth Bears fans. Mitchell Trubisky played like the inconsistent passer we saw during his rookie season with a pick and just 5.1 yards per attempt. Chicago still played lights out on defense, getting to Aaron Rodgers early and often and bottling up the run game. Turns out it was not enough, as the Bears drop to 0-1, shockingly placing them last in the NFC North after one week. They won’t stay there, but the offense needs to find its groove with a trip to Denver coming up.

Cowboys logo10. Dallas Cowboys: 1-0 (Last Week: 15)
Zeke is back and honestly, it might not have mattered with how well the Cowboys played. Dak Prescott tossed four touchdown and threw for over 400 yards. The wide receiving core looked great and Jason Witten even scored a touchdown. The defense was solid, but did get burned a handful of times by Saquon Barkley. The excitement around Tony Pollard definitely dropped off after a tough start to the year. With two forced fumbles defensively, there are a ton of positives for Dallas to take away from this game.

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11. Baltimore Ravens: 1-0 (Last Week: 16)
Wow. That’s probably the best way to summarize Baltimore scoring a franchise record 59 points on Miami. Lamar Jackson looked like Joe Montana picking apart a decent Dolphins secondary. Most of the damage was done in big chunks as well, rather than just grinding down the Dolphins defense. There is not much to criticize from this performance from the Ravens. With Arizona up next, it might be a few weeks before this squad is truly tested.

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12. Tennessee Titans: 1-0 (Last Week: 18)
Where in the world did that come from? Tennessee dominated the Browns in Cleveland for a 43-13 victory. Derrick Henry looked sharp, and Marcus Mariota was solid if unspectacular. The defense was cooking, sacking Baker Mayfield five times and intercepting him twice. It also came up with a safety and a defensive touchdown courtesy of Malcolm Butler. This is the formula the Titans could very well ride to a division title, as Mike Vrabel has the defense playing at a really high level. Back-to-back divisional games will help us figure out if Tennessee is for real.

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13. Houston Texans: 0-1 (Last Week: 13)
The Texans were so close to pulling off a huge opening week win in New Orleans. It was a really tough way to lose, but there is a lot to like about how the Texans played. Deshaun Watson played extremely well and the running game looked really good. However, there is plenty to not like about this performance as well. Watson got battered, taking six sacks, and the run defense was gashed by the combination of Alvin Kamara and Latavius Murray. Houston also gave up 370 passing yards to Drew Brees. There is still a lot to work out for this newly assembled team.

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14. Pittsburgh Steelers: 0-1 (Last Week: 8)
Losing Antonio Brown definitely hurts the offense, but the defense flat out fell apart in New England. They did nothing to get after Tom Brady and struggled to find any way to slow down the passing game. It is concerning when Phillip Dorsett torches the secondary for a pair of touchdowns. Ben Roethlisberger failed to find the end zone. James Connor never got going with 21 yards on 10 rushes. It was a failure to launch in the worst way for Pittsburgh who can just be thankful the Browns and Bengals lost as well.

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15. Atlanta Falcons: 0-1 (Last Week: 9)
That was far from an ideal way for the Falcons to start the season. Atlanta committed three turnovers and gave up four sacks to Minnesota. Matt Ryan finally turned things around a little bit with some late success, but it was a lackluster performance for the whole team. The Falcons cannot avoid the injury bug either as first round pick Chris Lindstrom hit the IR on Monday. He could return later this season, but that is a blow to an offensive line that struggled a lot last season. A Sunday night game against Philadelphia awaits them and Atlanta would love to avoid a 0-2 hole to dig out of.

Seahawks logo16. Seattle Seahawks: 1-0 (Last Week: 14)
That was a surprisingly close call for the Seahawks. It was mostly due to a questionable showing from the Seattle offense. Russell Wilson took four sacks and the top rushing offense from a year ago managed 2.9 yards per carry. The secondary also got burned twice by John Ross. On the plus side, the defense forced two Andy Dalton fumbles and kept Joe Mixon to pedestrian numbers. Seattle was lucky to win this game, but a win is a win. A trip to face the reeling Steelers is on deck, which represents another tough test.

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17. Cleveland Browns: 0-1 (Last Week: 11)
So maybe the Browns aren’t quite who we thought they were, even if Delaine Walker knew otherwise. Cleveland got steamrolled by the Titans at home in a woeful outing. Baker Mayfield will need to take better care of the football, but the offensive line will need to take better care of Mayfield. After trading Kevin Zeitler for Olivier Vernon during the offseason, the Browns never really replaced him in the starting lineup. Even if there are a ton of targets to throw to, Baker will need more time to get the ball to them. A game against the Jets should make things easier for a team who just got punched in the mouth.

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18. Indianapolis Colts: 0-1 (Last Week: 22)
It’s hard not to play the what if game here with the Colts. It will be hard not to all season. Indy came up just short of taking down the Chargers in overtime. Marlon Mack was great, the defense had a few big plays and Jacoby Brissett was … actually he was pretty good. He didn’t throw for a ton of yards, but he took care of the football and tossed a pair of touchdown passes to T.Y. Hilton. Had Indianapolis won the toss to start overtime, it might have been a different story. The Colts are still a solid team, but definitely do not feel as complete without Andrew Luck.

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19. San Francisco 49ers: 1-0 (Last Week: 21)
Last season, the 49ers had two interceptions as a team. On Sunday, they picked off Jameis Winston three times. Already, this team is surpassing levels from last year. It wasn’t a dominant performance from Jimmy Garoppolo, but he was solid in his regular season return. Tevin Coleman is going to miss some time with an injury though, leaving Matt Breida as the starter. With three straight games against the AFC North coming up, all the teams that lost in Week 1, San Francisco could be a sneaky team to pick for a hot start.

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20. Carolina Panthers: 0-1 (Last Week: 20)
It was a tale of two halves for Carolina. The Panthers managed just three points in the first half, but exploded for 24 in the second. It just wasn’t enough to beat the Rams. Christian McCaffrey was otherworldly again, but Cam Newton had a forgettable day. He had no touchdown passes, an interception and negative rushing yards. Los Angeles forced him to beat them as a passer, which he almost found a way to do in the second half, but it was too little, too late.

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21. Oakland Raiders: 1-0 (Last Week: 26)
What a week for the Raiders. Antonio Brown was suspended, then back in the starting lineup, all for him to end up in New England. That all happened before they even took the field. The play on the field made a lot of people forget about how tumultuous a week it had been off it. Oakland dominated Denver, even if they only won by eight points. Derek Carr proved he has truly figured out Jon Gruden’s system and the offensive line won the night. It did not allow that Broncos’ pass rush to bring down Carr once and opened up some nice running lane for the impressive Josh Jacobs. However, the competition gets much tougher as the Chiefs roll into town for an AFC West showdown.

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22. Jacksonville Jaguars: 0-1 (Last Week: 19)
Hopes of a rebound season under Nick Foles deflated quickly after the newly signed quarterback broke his collarbone. Jacksonville traded for Josh Dobbs on Monday from Pittsburgh as a result. All might not be lost, as Gardner Mishnew played extremely well in relief. He went 22-25 for 275 yards and two touchdowns. He did throw one interception, but it was a positive performance for the rookie quarterback. Unfortunately, the Jags defense gave up 40 points to Patrick Mahomes and company, even without Tyreek Hill for most of the game. The season is far from over after one week, but the defense needs to play better.

Denver_Broncos23. Denver Broncos: 0-1 (Last Week: 17)
It was an inauspicious start to the season for Denver. The supposedly vaunted defense was nowhere to be found as Von Miller and Bradley Chubb were held in check by the Oakland offensive line. It was really a debut to forget for Vic Fangio on defense as Derek Carr carved up the secondary. Now the Broncos were down a couple key contributors on that side of the ball, but the Raiders had control of this game from the very beginning. Joe Flacco will need to settle in quickly as this offense looks to find its footing. This won’t get any easier with the Bears coming to town.

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24. Buffalo Bills: 1-0 (Last Week: 25)
It wasn’t always pretty, but a win over a division rival on the road is huge for Buffalo to start the season. Down 16 to the Jets, Josh Allen engineered a big comeback. That retooled receiving core looked pretty solid as John Brown made an immediate impact. There were a lot of early miscues as the Bills committed four turnovers, but bouncing back from that and finding a way to win showed a lot of maturity from an overall young group.

Washington made up logo25. Washington: 0-1 (Last Week: 30)
Nothing like inducing a little panic in a division rival early in the year. Case Keenum balled out in his debut for Washington, with 380 yards through the air. There is some bad news, as Derrius Guice seems to be headed for the bench for a few weeks. There is a decent amount of depth in the backfield though with Chris Thompson, Adrian Peterson and Wendall Smallwood on the roster. They will need a bit more success running the ball after managing just 28 yards on 13 attempts against the Eagles. Still, this was a very promising start for the team despite the final result.

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26. New York Jets: 0-1 (Last Week: 24)
Oh boy. Where to even start here? The defense played lights out for three quarters and even scored eight points. Meanwhile, the Jets offense sputtered and only managed to find the end zone once, despite receiving great field position from a number of forced turnovers. Jamison Crowder and Le’Veon Bell integrated themselves well, but overall this was a major disappointment for the debut of Adam Gase’s offense in New York. Toss in continued kicking woes and the Jets are in midseason form for unresolved issues.

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27. Cincinnati Bengals: 0-1 (Last Week: 31)
Well that was not what most expected of the Bengals to open the season. Cincinnati held the Seahawks relatively in check and showed some explosiveness on offense. John Ross showed up after two years of absolutely nothing with two massive touchdowns. If not for a ridiculous Andy Dalton screw up, the Bengals could have emerged from new head coach Zac Taylor’s debut with a shocking victory. It is a step in the right direction though, as Cincy appears to be much more competitive this season.

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28. Tampa Bay Buccaneers: 0-1 (Last Week: 23)
We probably just witnessed the beginning of the end for the Jameis Winston era in Tampa Bay. With three interceptions, including a pick-six, and an 8.6 QBR, Winston fell flat versus San Francisco. He actually got some help from his running game, as the Bucs running backs averaged 5.1 yards per carry. The defense wasn’t great, but the pick-six from Vernon Hargreaves was a nice touch. It was a rough start for a Tampa team that had higher hopes for the 2019 season. We will need to see some major improvement across the board.

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29. Detroit Lions: 0-0-1 (Last Week: 27)
Up 15 in the fourth quarter against a rookie quarterback and the team who earned the first overall pick last year. Should be a slam dunk right? Not for Detroit. The Lions underwent a massive collapse, mostly by their own doing. A questionable timeout call and a disappearing act by the defense led to a bitter tie. No one expected the Detroit to be pushing for a playoff spot, but if this is how the team is going to play this season, Matt Stafford and Matt Patricia could be on their way out of town.

Arizona_Cardnals_logo_(1994-2004)30. Arizona Cardinals: 0-0-1 (Last Week: 29)
It was about as ugly a start as possible to the Kyler Murray era. Then, the former Heisman winner channeled the magic he often found at Oklahoma and led an incredible fourth quarter comeback. Sure it resulted in a tie rather than a win, but there were signs of optimism for that offense. Unfortunately, the defense looks extremely weak. Getting a full strength secondary will make a huge difference, but this is still a talent-deprived roster with a rookie quarterback. Expect growing pains.

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31. New York Giants: 0-1 (Last Week: 28)
So it turns out that trading away your best pass rusher makes it really difficult to stop Dak Prescott. The Giants secondary looked pathetic trying to track down Dallas receivers all game long as Prescott shredded New York for more than 400 yards passing. Some questions certainly arise about Saquon Barkley’s usage as well, mostly that he didn’t get the ball enough. He had 120 yards rushing, on just 11 carries. Just run the ball with him more. Seems like a logical solution. I think the Daniel Jones hype might cool a bit after that debut fumble. The Giants are destined for a top-five pick.

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32. Miami Dolphins: 0-1 (Last Week: 32)
I am tempted to put a few college teams above the Dolphins after that showing. It clear this team is angling for the number one pick and possibly a spot in the College Football Playoff. The Ravens dropped 59 points on the Fins and dominated in every facet of the game. Ryan Fitzpatrick and Josh Rosen both struggled. No one on defense had an answer for Lamar Jackson, who tore up Miami through the air. With the Patriots on tap next week, things are definitely going to get worse before they get better.

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NFL Power Rankings 2018: Week 9

Patriots Logo

1. New England Patriots: 7-2 (Last Week: 2)
Welcome back to the top of the power rankings New England. For the first time since week 1, there is a team other the Rams on top. After the convincing win over the Packers, it is well deserved. Holding an Aaron Rodgers-led offense to just 17 points is a big deal. Without Gronk, without Sony Michel, the Patriots continue to find more offensive playmakers, as they always do.

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2. New Orleans Saints: 7-1 (Last Week: 4)
Down go the Rams! Sean Payton and Drew Brees shredded the Los Angeles defense to the tune of 45 points. The Saints offense looked nothing short of unstoppable in the first half of this game. Giving up 35 points wasn’t great, but New Orleans did a good job containing Todd Gurley. The Saints head to Cincinnati looking to continue its run as the hottest team in the league.

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3. Kansas City Chiefs: 8-1 (Last Week: 3)
Maybe this win was not as convincing as many expected. After all, the Browns were down by just six in the third quarter. The Chiefs still look explosive on offense and the defense is looking marginally better than it did when it opened the season. Patrick Mahomes is a beast. This team has more elite weapons than any other offense in the NFL between Tyreek Hill, Kareem Hunt and Travis Kelce. Throw in Sammy Watkins and this offense is truly scary.

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4. Los Angeles Rams: 8-1 (Last Week: 1)
The Rams spent the offseason loading up on defensive weapons. It fell apart in New Orleans. Marcus Peters looked terrible trying to contain Michael Thomas. No sacks recorded and a whopping 45 points allowed is a tough thing to justify for a team with so much talent on the defensive side of the ball. Even with a prolific offense, Los Angeles will need to improve its play on the back end to win a Super Bowl.

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5. Carolina Panthers: 6-2 (Last Week: 5)
The Panthers are coming to primetime! Following a shootout win over the Buccaneers, courtesy of a 35-point first half, Carolina now hosts Pittsburgh on Thursday night in a cross-conference showdown. Norv Turner continues to find new ways to utilize this unconventional group of playmakers. If the defense can find a way to slow down James Conner, Carolina will emerge with another important victory as it tries to keep pace with New Orleans.

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6. Los Angeles Chargers: 6-2 (Last Week: 6)
Can someone find the Chargers a quality kicker? Caleb Sturgis struggled again, missing an extra point and a field goal, but Los Angeles held on for a tight win in Seattle. But I’ve buried the lede here, the Chargers join a pretty exclusive list of teams to go to CenturyLink and emerge with a victory. Los Angeles faces two struggling divisional opponents next in Oakland and Denver with an eye on the division crown.

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7. Pittsburgh Steelers: 5-2-1 (Last Week: 7)
This team is starting to resemble the 2006 Steelers, on offense at least. They have a pair of dynamic receivers and an explosive running game to lean on. Ben Roethlisberger was on that team too. Pittsburgh is hitting on all cylinders now and earned another hard-fought win over the Ravens. A short week looms though with Big Ben nursing some injuries. It will be a tough test in Charlotte for Mike Tomlin and company.

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8. Minnesota Vikings: 5-3-1 (Last Week 8)
As you are reading this, Matt Stafford was just sacked again by the Vikings defense. Minnesota racked up a franchise record 10 sacks against Detroit on Sunday. Danielle Hunter returned a fumble for a touchdown as well. For the first time all season, Adam Thielen failed to pick up 100 yards receiving, which isn’t really a big deal when your team wins 24-9. He still scored a touchdown.

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9. Philadelphia Eagles: 4-4 (Last Week: 9)
The Eagles have to be feeling pretty good about themselves right about now. Washington is dealing with a ton of injuries and coming off a loss. The Cowboys dropped a key game at home after picking up Amari Cooper. Philly also added Golden Tate at the deadline to make this offense even more lethal. The Eagles are going to be a team no one wants to face in the postseason.

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10. Chicago Bears: 5-3 (Last Week: 11)
Chicago battered possibly the worst quarterback in NFL history once again. Nathan Peterman now has more touchdown passes to opposing teams than to his own. Looking at this game from a statistical standpoint, it seems impossible the Bears put up 41 points.  The offense produced just 190 yards of total offense. Goes to show how bad the Bills offense was and how good the Bears defense can be. Chicago will get a tougher test as the Lions come to town.

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11. Houston Texans: 6-3 (Last Week: 12)
Ugly as it might have been, the Texans emerged from Denver with another win. Houston is riding a six-game winning streak and it is games like this that set apart contenders from pretenders. Beating the 3-6 Broncos is not particularly impressive, but gutting out a tough game when you aren’t playing your best is important. Houston has a week off now to further integrate Demaryius Thomas into the passing game.

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12. Cincinnati Bengals: 5-3 (Last Week: 14)
The news regarding A.J. Green is not sounding too good as he is headed for a specialist this week to examine his foot. With their top playmaker on the shelf, Andy Dalton is going to need to rely on his ground game. The Bengals are still right in the mix for a playoff spot, but the work becomes harder with all the injuries that are piling up. Good luck keeping up with the Saints offense.

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13. Atlanta Falcons: 4-4 (Last Week: 16)
Matt Ryan is putting up MVP-caliber numbers and the Falcons are benefiting from it. Atlanta blew out Washington on the road. Perhaps the most impressive thing was holding Adrian Peterson, fresh off his best game of the season, to just 1.9 yard per carry. If the defense can play at this level on a consistent basis, expect the Falcons to be legitimate contenders for a wildcard spot.

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14. Washington: 5-3 (Last Week: 10)
It was an ugly loss at home to the Falcons. Washington is extremely banged up along the offensive line and at receiver. When the ground game completely disappears on top of that, it is a recipe for disaster. Adding Ha Ha Clinton-Dix at the deadline was supposed to sure up the defense as well. Initial returns don’t look great as Matt Ryan torched the secondary for 350 yards and four touchdowns. Washington still leads the NFC East, but this does not feel like a playoff team.

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15. Baltimore Ravens: 4-5 (Last Week: 13)
Baltimore’s schedule has been brutal the last few weeks, facing the Saints, Panthers and Steelers. While that may be true, that stretch also taught us a lot about this team. The Ravens clearly are not on the same level as those top teams. The offense does not have enough firepower to compete with the top clubs in the league. Joe Flacco is not getting it done and Alex Collins is not good enough to compensate for it. The middling group of receivers does not help either. A much-needed bye week should give Baltimore time to regroup and reformulate the offense.

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16. Seattle Seahawks: 4-4 (Last Week: 15)
That was a disappointing showing from the Seahawks. If not for a couple of missed kicks by Caleb Sturgis, Seattle would never have been in a position to win at the end against Los Angeles. On top of that, David Moore dropped the ball on the final play of the game. It would have been a huge week to win in order to close the gap on the Rams following LA’s first loss of the year. Instead, Seattle will continue to hunt a wildcard spot.

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17. Tennessee Titans: 4-4 (Last Week: 23)
The Titans pulled off a solid win over the Cowboys in a tough environment on Monday night. It keeps Tennessee in the thick of the playoff chase. The Titans are second in the division trailing only the Texans. While it is easy to doubt Tennessee’s credentials as a playoff threat, this team won a game in the postseason last year and has some young pieces that are clearly improving. If the offense can play turnover free, we’ve seen the defense win games for them already this season.

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18. Green Bay Packers: 3-4-1 (Last Week: 17)
Another tough loss for the Packers raises questions over how good this team really is in 2018. The defense was gashed early and often by the combination of James White and Cordarrelle Patterson. Josh Gordon took the top off the defense after that. It is clear that while this defense has made strides, it still has a long way to go before Green Bay is back to contender level. If the Packers lose to Miami, put this team in full on panic mode.

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19. Miami Dolphins: 5-4 (Last Week: 21)
In the midst of some exciting result across the league, I feel bad for anyone else who had the misfortune of watching the Dolphins and Jets. Miami managed to outlast New York on a rain-soaked field in a game where no offensive touchdowns were scored. The defense picked off Sam Darnold four times, but the Dolphins offense was terrible. Brock Osweiler threw for 139 yards and the ground game averaged 2.4 yards per attempt. Ryan Tannehill could be back this week, but that is far from a guarantee things will improve.

Denver_Broncos

20. Denver Broncos: 3-6 (Last Week: 19)
Denver had a chance to pull off a meaningful win and draw closer to .500. Brandon McManus missed the game-winning field goal and the Broncos fall deeper into the hole it dug themselves. Denver has lost six of seven, with the lone win coming against the hapless Cardinals. The pressure has to be on inside that locker room to show signs of improvement. However, considering Demaryius Thomas was just shipped out, it is not surprising to see this team struggle to score points.

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21. Detroit Lions: 3-5 (Last Week: 18)
Despite the ridiculous amount of money Matthew Stafford makes, Monday morning was a good day to not be him. He was hit 17 times in Minnesota. Detroit is looking less like a wildcard team and more like a team destined to draft in the top 10. If the offense cannot find a way to get into the end zone, it is going to be hard to win games down the stretch.

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22. Dallas Cowboys: 3-5 (Last Week: 20)
No one is going to admit to it yet, but this week might just be the beginning of the end for Jason Garrett and Dak Prescott in Dallas. The Cowboys failed to show up coming off a bye for a major home game against a beatable Titans team. Amari Cooper seems like a worthwhile addition, but given that Dallas will be picking in the top 12 most likely, it seems like a high price to pay for a team still desperately needing to fill holes across the roster. Dallas is 0-4 on the road so far, which doesn’t bode well for a playoff push.

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23. Jacksonville Jaguars: 3-5 (Last Week: 22)
What if I told you that through nine weeks of the NFL season, the Jacksonville Jaguars would be in last place in the AFC South? Hard to believe, but based on division record, the Colts own the tiebreaker over the Jags. That could all change this week when Jacksonville takes on Indy, especially with the rumors Leonard Fournette could be back on the field.

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24. Indianapolis Colts: 3-5 (Last Week: 24)
Indianapolis is entering a vital stretch where it will face either divisional foes or fellow wildcard bubble teams in the AFC over the next six weeks. In a lot of ways, the Colts control their destiny more than several other playoff hopefuls. It starts with a crucial matchup against Jacksonville. A win there and the Colts are in business. A loss would make hopes of a playoff berth fairly bleak.

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25. Tampa Bay Buccaneers: 3-5 (Last Week: 25)
The problem with the Buccaneers is not the offense. Tampa put up 28 points against a good Panthers defense. It also allowed 42 though, including 35 in the first half. No matter how much of a gunslinger Ryan Fitzpatrick may be, it is hard to overcome a 35-14 halftime deficit. There is no question that Tampa is in preparation mode for next season and based on how many key positions it needs to figure out, it might be a while before the Bucs turn it around.

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26. Cleveland Browns: 2-6-1 (Last Week: 26)
Considering how poorly the Bengals fared against the Chiefs just a few short weeks ago, this could’ve been much worse. A 16-point loss is nothing to be proud of if you are Cleveland, but there were signs of potential on offense with Duke Johnson finally showing up. The defense was pretty poor and the offensive line made some notable mistakes. Let’s keep in mind this team won one game over the previous two years. It is going to take a bit of time to get back on track.

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27. New York Jets: 3-6 (Last Week: 27)
It is just his rookie season, but there have to be some red flags rising in regard to Sam Darnold. He leads the NFL in interceptions with 14. That is four more than both Case Keenum and Jameis Winston, who are the next highest on the list. His completion percentage of 55 is also troubling. While all the rookies have struggled to complete passes, Darnold seemed to stare down coverages in Miami and launch passes into windows that did not exist. It was a week to forget, but if the Jets lose to the Bills at home this week, it could spell some major changes for this franchise.

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28. New York Giants: 1-7 (Last Week: 28)
For just the second time this season, the Giants did not lose. New York also didn’t play, but let’s not get too technical here. This front office is in the process of cleaning house. It seems like Eli Manning will be gone at the end of the season. Unfortunately, the Giants don’t appear to have too many building blocks currently in house.

Arizona_Cardnals_logo_(1994-2004)

29. Arizona Cardinals: 2-6 (Last Week: 30)
A week off for the Cardinals gives a nice breather to their rookie quarterback. Josh Rosen has been a lot of what was advertised so far. Clearly this team is a few years away from competing for anything, especially with Seattle and Los Angeles in their division. This week isn’t going to be too pretty though with a trip to Arrowhead on the docket to face the Chiefs. Maybe Rosen can learn something from watching Patrick Mahomes and the blistering Kansas City offense.

49ers Logo

30. San Francisco 49ers: 2-7 (Last Week: 32)
It was a lot of fun to watch Nick Mullins tear apart Oakland on Thursday night, but the 49ers won a game against another basement dweller and potentially cost themselves an opportunity to draft Nick Bosa. This team has some talented pieces, most of which are hurt. A chance to add a talent like Bosa along the defensive line is rare, especially for a team that seems set at quarterback. There is always a chance Bosa could slide after not playing for most of the college season, but he seems to be a lock as a top three pick.

Bills logo

31. Buffalo Bills: 2-7 (Last Week: 29)
Nathan Peterman is pretty much solidified himself as the worst quarterback I have ever seen play a game of football in my life. He has 12 interceptions to just three touchdowns in his career and a completion percentage south of 50. Sure, he has a rough supporting cast, but this is just awful quarterback play. The Bills really can’t wait for Josh Allen to get back under center.

Raiders logo

32. Oakland Raiders: 1-7 (Last Week: 31)
This week on “Are the Raiders Trying to Lose?” the answer seemed to be pretty clearly yes. A quarterback most of the country had never heard of torched the Oakland defense and the offense failed to generate much of a spark against a pedestrian 49ers defense. Jon Gruden is doing a great job of tearing the team down. Time to see if he can rebuild it.

NFL Power Rankings: Week 9

Patriots Logo1. New England Patriots (Last week: 1)
Another week, another dominant victory. Tom Brady is a legitimate MVP candidate despite missing the first four games of the season. Jamie Collins might be gone, but this defense should keep humming along. Revenge against Rex Ryan is always nice too for Bill Belichick.

Cowboys logo2. Dallas Cowboys (Last week: 2)
The Cowboys have played half of their schedule and have a 2.5 game lead over the rest of the NFC East. Overtime was required for Dallas to oust Philly, but the 4th quarter Dallas put together cannot be overlooked. The biggest question now is who deserves Rookie of the Year, Dak Prescott or Ezekiel Elliot.

Denver_Broncos3. Denver Broncos (Last week: 6)
Three weeks ago, Denver had lost two straight and seemed to be slipping. Fast forward to now where they sit at 6-2 with solid wins over Houston and San Diego. The Patriots have the early lead, but the Broncos are hanging around in the AFC.

Raiders logo4. Oakland Raiders (Last week: 9)
The Raiders actually lead the AFC West right now, but a matchup with Denver on Sunday will decide who gets that designation. Oakland won this weekend despite setting a record for the most penalties in a game. That’s impressive, but also concerning.

Falcons logo5. Atlanta Falcons (Last week: 10)
Talk about a fourth quarter comeback. Atlanta slowed down the Packer offense in the second half and moved themselves to 5-3. Atlanta has shown that they are going to be competitive this year against anyone.

Chiefs Logo6. Kansas City Chiefs (Last week: 7)
Somehow, the Chiefs are in third place in the AFC West with a 5-2 record. That’s a testament to just how good this division is this year. Even if Alex Smith and the backfield are banged up, Kansas City has always won with defense and will continue to going forward.

Seahawks logo7. Seattle Seahawks (Last week: 3)
Seattle has only one win against a team with a winning record so far this season. A tough road loss to the Saints means that the Seahawks return home for a Monday night matchup with the Bills at 4-3-1. AKA not where anyone thought they would be right now.

Vikings logo8. Minnesota Vikings (Last week: 4)
The loss to the Eagles seemed like an anomaly, until Minnesota laid an egg on Monday Night Football. It might have been a divisional game, but a loss to the Bears really hurts. The Vikings suddenly look like a team with a lot of question marks on the offensive side of the ball.

Packers logo9. Green Bay Packers (Last week: 5)
Green Bay came within about a minute of beating the Falcons for what would have been an impressive road victory. Considering that Ty Montgomery, James Starks and Randall Cobb were out with injury, the Packers had a strong offensive showing. Minnesota’s loss leaves the Packers just a game out of first in the NFC North, but they need to be much more consistent down the stretch.

Eagles Logo10. Philadelphia Eagles (Last week: 8)
It was a solid week, but still a loss to a division rival. Dallas now has a commanding lead in the NFC East halfway through the season. Carson Wentz is still playing well, but the ground attack could use a bit of a boost.

Washington made up logo11. Washington (Last week: 13)
A tie over in London wouldn’t suggest for Washington to move up, but after losses by both Arizona and Detroit, this seems fitting. Washington is still right in the mix for a wildcard spot in the NFC, with this offense leading the way averaging the third most yards per game.

Giants Logo12. New York Giants (Last week: 14)
New York took the week off and as a result moved into second place in the NFC East. However, the Giants have some offensive issues to solve. They rank last in rushing yards per game and are scoring fewer points per game than the Browns. Ben McAdoo has some work to do.

Arizona_Cardnals_logo_(1994-2004)13. Arizona Cardinals (Last week: 11)
Arizona fell on the road against Carolina, showing that they really are just an average team. The Cardinals rank 18th in points per game but sixth in points per game. Time for what can be a high powered offense to catch up to its defense.

Lions Logo

14. Detroit Lions (Last week: 12)
Detroit had a chance to take down a slumping Texans team but instead find themselves at .500 at the midway point of the season. A matchup with the reeling Vikings will show us if this was just a bump in the road after a three-game win streak for the Lions, or a sign of things to come.

Chargers logo15. San Diego Chargers (Last week: 15)
All of the statistics in the world point to the Chargers being a good team, except for their record. San Diego’s upcoming schedule of Tennessee, Miami, Houston and Tampa Bay does give them a good chance to turn that around though.

Saints logo16. New Orleans Saints (Last week: 21)
Finally, the Saints got a win against a quality opponent. It has been a rough start to the season for Sean Payton’s group, but the NFC South is still wide open, as is the NFC as a whole. The defense looked better this week, allowing fewer than 27 point for the first time since week 2.

Pittsburgh_Steelers logo17. Pittsburgh Steelers (Last week: 18)
There are rumors that Ben Roethlisberger might be closer to returning than we initially thought. Big Ben coming back to the Steelers offense makes them a force again in the AFC. And with the rest of the division slumping, Pittsburgh has to feel pretty confident.

Bengals Logo18. Cincinnati Bengals (Last week: 17)
Washington moved up but Cincinnati is moving down. The Bengals had a chance to force a tie atop the AFC North with Pittsburgh, but could not find a way to get the win in London. Cincy has a bye week to attempt to regain its 2015 form.

Texans logo19. Houston Texans (Last week: 23)
Someone please explain the Houston Texans to me. After looking completely helpless in Denver, Bill O’Brien turned his team around to take down a red-hot Lions team. Houston isn’t good, but they are probably good enough to win the AFC South.

Ravens logo20. Baltimore Ravens (Last week: 19)
A week off gave the Ravens time to recover from the four game slide they are currently on. The division is still wide open, but Joe Flacco need to find a way to jumpstart the 26th ranked scoring offense in football.

Bills logo21. Buffalo Bills (Last week: 16)
And they are back to normal. Just two weeks after claiming a spot in the top 10, Buffalo is now back in the bottom half of the league. Back-to-back divisional losses where your defense looks helpless will do that to you.

Titans logo22. Tennessee Titans (Last week: 27)
Tennessee is very quietly sitting at .500 through the halfway point of the season. It has already surpassed its win total for 2015 and sits just a game out of first place in the AFC South. How the Titans do in this next four game stretch, with three of them on the road, will decide the outcome of their season.

Dolphins logo23. Miami Dolphins (Last week: 22)
The Fins got a week off, which have been the last thing they wanted. They had won two in a row and Jay Ajayi was on fire. Next week brings a matchup with the Jets to avoid the AFC East cellar.

Buccaneers logo24. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (Last week: 20)
How Tampa failed to win on Sunday is almost mind-boggling. Oakland committed 23 penalties and still beat the Buccaneers. Overall, not a good look. Winston has nine interceptions in seven games. That number needs to come down if the Bucs want to compete.

Panthers logo25. Carolina Panthers (Last week: 26)
Finally a win for the Panthers gets them back on track. Sitting at 2-5, Carolina still has a long way to go before they can really say they have righted the ship, but this was step one.

Colts logo26. Indianapolis Colts (Last week: 24)
Andrew Luck needs to start getting some help. He has played well in the first half of the season for the Colts, but the lack of a run game and a pathetic defense continue to plague the Colts. Allowing 28.8 points per game means that Chuck Pagano might not have his job for much longer.

Jets logo27. New York Jets (Last week: 28)
Two straight wins for the Jets over AFC North teams puts them at 3-5. Being down 20-7 at halftime with Ryan Fitzpatrick completing 3 of his 12 passes for 30 yards will not work most weeks, so Todd Bowles has a lot of work to do to prep this team for Miami.

Rams logo28. Los Angeles Rams (Last week: 25)
The Rams have shown flashes of being a competent team this season, with wins over the Seahawks and Buccaneers. But inconsistent play along with poor coaching has this team in flux as it tries to find an identity.

Bears logo29. Chicago Bears (Last week: 31)
Chicago just got a statement win for John Fox against Minnesota. It won’t really do much for them this season, as they sit at 2-6 right now, but it is a huge boost for the future. Jay Cutler played the best football we’ve seen him play in some time and Jordan Howard tore apart a very good Vikings defense. This gives the Bears something to build on.

Jaguars logo30. Jacksonville Jaguars (Last week: 29)
Another rough week for Jacksonville. The Jags were blown out through three quarters until they scored late to make the game seem competitive. Gus Bradley is on the hot seat and he knows it. I think these next two weeks against Kansas City and Houston will decide his future.

49ers Logo31. San Francisco 49ers (Last week: 30)
Now the only one win team in football, San Francisco needs to find some offensive weapons not named Carlos Hyde. This season seems pretty far gone and Chip Kelly has to be thinking about next year at this point, most notably about which quarterback he would like to draft in April.

Browns logo32. Cleveland Browns (Last week: 32)
There was hope for Browns fans for a good chunk of Sunday. But then that completely disappeared and the Cubs beat the Indians. Now, Browns fans are facing a Game 7 with a possibility of blowing a 3-1 lead in the World Series. We all know how quickly the sports world tends to forget about that.

NFL Power Rankings: Week 8

Patriots Logo1. New England Patriots (Last week: 1)
New England took advantage of the Steelers missing Ben Roethlisberger. LeVeon Bell was contained. As was Antonio Brown. Tom Brady continues to look sharp. This division looks like it still belongs to the Patriots.

Cowboys logo2. Dallas Cowboys (Last week: 4)
Dallas moves up due to the ineptitude of the Seahawks and Vikings, even though they were on a bye. The Cowboys return to action Sunday night against Philly for a chance to control the NFC East.

Seahawks logo3. Seattle Seahawks (Last week: 3)
It is hard to find too many positives from a 6-6 tie. At the same time, Seattle’s defense looked outstanding throughout the entire game. Limiting David Johnson’s big plays and making Larry Fitzgerald a non-factor. That defense will get tested again this week with a trip to the Super Dome to play the Saints.

Vikings logo4. Minnesota Vikings (Last week: 2)
The last of them falls. Minnesota is no longer undefeated and Sam Bradford looked mediocre this weekend. That does not wipe out what he has done to this point, but reminds us all that he is prone to this type of outing from time to time.

Packers logo5. Green Bay Packers (Last week: 6)
He didn’t need to say it this time around, but the Packers relaxed and turned in a phenomenal second half to soundly beat the Bears. Green Bay hasn’t solved everything, but they are suddenly just a game out of the NFC North lead though and look like they are heading in the right direction.

Denver_Broncos6. Denver Broncos (Last week: 8)
Denver got back on track Monday night with a quality win over Houston. The defense did not allow a touchdown. C.J. Anderson ran well and Trevor Siemian did just enough to propel the Broncos to a win. The AFC West looks deadly right now.

Chiefs Logo7. Kansas City Chiefs (Last week: 10)
Kansas City hung on for a solid home win over New Orleans on Sunday. Between Spenser Ware, Jamaal Charles and Charcandrick West, the Chiefs have an embarrassment of riches. Alex Smith is still driving this bus and its working for Andy Reid’s team.

Eagles Logo8. Philadelphia Eagles (Last week: 11)
Speaking of Andy Reid, his former offensive coordinator Doug Peterson just knocked off the last undefeated team in the league. It wasn’t exactly pretty, but that Eagles defense is looking better every week.

Raiders logo9. Oakland Raiders (Last week: 12)
It’s hard to place Oakland. They have a mediocre point differential, but lead the AFC West with five wins. If the season ended today, they would have a bye to the divisional round of the playoffs. With four divisional games left this year, the West if far from won.

Falcons logo10. Atlanta Falcons (Last week: 5)
I gave Atlanta something of a pass last week following a two-point loss. This week’s loss was only three points, but it was at home having been outscored 16-3 in the second half and overtime. The Falcons aren’t in free fall, but they need to start closing out games.

Arizona_Cardnals_logo_(1994-2004)11. Arizona Cardinals (Last week: 13)
Well not losing is better than losing. But winning is better than not winning. Arizona had a number of chances to win at home against Seattle. That would’ve been a huge win for divisional purposes. Instead, Arizona is .500 through seven weeks.

Lions Logo

12. Detroit Lions (Last week: 18)
That’s three straight for the Lions, who suddenly have a winning record. A trip to see a struggling Houston outfit gives Detroit a chance to stretch this win streak to four. Running back is still a revolving door, but the Lions have a shot right now.

Washington made up logo13. Washington (Last week: 7)
Like I said, Washington probably isn’t the number seven team in the league. They proved that this week with a fourth quarter collapse against Detroit. Matt Jones continues to be streaky and that Jordan Reed injury needs definitely limits this offense’s potential to be successful.

Giants Logo14. New York Giants (Last week: 14)
Now above .500, the Giants are still in the basement of the NFC East. Coming back from London with a gritty win is huge, especially heading into a bye. If anyone needs to get healthy it’s New York.

Chargers logo15. San Diego Chargers (Last week: 20)
Another week, another sign that the beginning of this season was just a fluke. Even without Danny Woodhead and Keenan Allen, San Diego is finding ways to win. This is easily the best team under .500 in the league right now.

Bills logo16. Buffalo Bills (Last week: 9)
Nothing like a road loss to a division rival to bring you crashing down to Earth. Buffalo has solid wins over New England and Arizona, but losses to the Jets and Dolphins now. The other two wins came against the 49ers and Rams. Not a great resume for the Bills.

Bengals Logo17. Cincinnati Bengals (Last week: 21)
It was Cleveland, but a win nonetheless. Cincy finally bounced back and got a big win. The Bengals are now just a game back of the AFC North lead with the Ravens reeling and the Steelers missing their quarterback. Cincy ranks fifth in total yards per game, but 23rd in points per game. The offense needs to start converting.

Pittsburgh_Steelers logo18. Pittsburgh Steelers (Last week: 16)
Landry Jones played about as well as Pittsburgh fans could have hoped once he settled down after his first quarter interception. The Steelers looked competitive for most of the game with a very good opponent. They still lead this division, but they are going to need to win some games before Big Ben returns.

Ravens logo19. Baltimore Ravens (Last week: 17)
Six yards. That’s how many rushing yards the Ravens could muster this week in New York. Joe Flacco also tossed two picks against a weak Jets secondary. Baltimore has lost four in a row and has a lot of questions to answer going forward.

Buccaneers logo20. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (Last week: 22)
Tampa Bay overcame a slow start to blowout San Francisco. The running game continues to thrive no matter who is taking the handoffs. The Bucs are just a half game back of the Falcons for the lead in the NFC South. Let that sink in.

Saints logo21. New Orleans Saints (Last week: 19)
The Saints are third in the league in scoring offense, and last in scoring defense. New Orleans has been trying for years to fix this defensive unit. They are wasting away the last years of Drew Brees’ career as they continue to lose in shootouts.

Dolphins logo22. Miami Dolphins (Last week: 25)
Jay Ajayi is still running now as you read this. In the last two weeks, Ajayi has ripped off 414 yards and three touchdowns. Miami heads into a bye week only a game under .500 and with their backfield likely figured out.

Texans logo23. Houston Texans (Last week: 15)
That comeback win against Indy feels like a long time ago for Brock Osweiler. He has completed just 58 percent of his passes and owns a yards per attempt average of 5.7. Osweiler has also committed 13 turnovers in seven games. Houston, we definitely have a problem.

Colts logo24. Indianapolis Colts (Last week: 24)
Indy has been far from perfect this year. They’ve frequently been far from good for that matter, but the Colts are just a game out of first place. If Chuck Pagano’s group makes the playoffs, it will be because they won the very weak AFC South. And based on how the offensive line and defense are playing, they won’t get very far.

Rams logo25. Los Angeles Rams (Last week: 23)
It was a promising start in the new city. Now suddenly the Rams are back below .500. A week off after an unsuccessful trip to London gives Los Angeles time to recover, but it does not solve their quarterback issues. Case Keenum had four interceptions Sunday, including a pick six.

Panthers logo26. Carolina Panthers (Last week: 26)
This is the best one-win team in football. It’s true because it means that Carolina is better than Chicago. Jonathan Stewart will be back but the real problems are on the defense. The Panthers are 26th in passing defense and 29th in scoring defense.

Titans logo27. Tennessee Titans (Last week: 27)
Well being .500 was fun while it lasted. Tennessee continues to struggle to take that next step. This is a very young team with a lot of building pieces. DeMarco Murray gives this chance to control games, but when you lose the turnover battle as the Titans have, it is really tough to win.

Jets logo28. New York Jets (Last week: 29)
It was a bounce back game of sorts for the Jets. The defense came up with some big takeaways and Ryan Fitzpatrick and Geno Smith played mistake-free football. Fitz seemed pissed about being benched. That kind of fire could be good for New York going forward.

Jaguars logo29. Jacksonville Jaguars (Last week: 28)
Will Blake Bortles of 2015 please show up? Through the first six games he has played, Bortles has nine touchdowns and interceptions. Through his first six games last year, Bortles had thrown 13 touchdowns to only seven picks. Jacksonville sinks and swims with their third year passer.

49ers Logo30. San Francisco 49ers (Last week: 30)
A good start marred by a pathetic collapse. San Francisco has a lot of problems on defense. They are third to last in yards allowed and second to last in points allowed. The most staggering stat though might be that the 49ers are allowing 185 yards rushing per game. That is 45 more yards per game than Cleveland, who has the second worst mark. If Chip Kelly wants to find a place to improve, that would be a good one to start.

Bears logo31. Chicago Bears (Last week: 31)
The Bears were competitive in the first half with Green Bay, until Aaron Rodgers regained his form and tore the defense apart. Everyone knew that it was going to take a little time for John Fox to turn this team around, but there haven’t been many bright spots to point to a promising future.

Browns logo32. Cleveland Browns (Last week: 32)
If you are still reading this, all you need to know is that the Browns lost again and that because the Cavaliers are back that Cleveland fans have stopped caring about football.

NFL Power Rankings: Week 6

Patriots Logo1. New England Patriots (Last week: 1)
The AFC East (other than the Jets) had a good weekend, and the Pats certainly led the way. There were some questionable miscues from the defense and special teams, but nothing to really be concerned about.

Vikings logo2. Minnesota Vikings (Last week: 2)
A week off lets the Vikings bask in the glory of being undefeated. Leslie Frazier has this defense operating at a very high level and the offense is playing turnover free. That’s a winning formula.

Seahawks logo3. Seattle Seahawks (Last week: 4)
It was a win but Seattle almost blew a major first half lead against Atlanta. Arizona is on tap and a win there would put Seattle in the driver’s seat for the rest of the season in the NFC West.

Cowboys logo4. Dallas Cowboys (Last week: 9)
Five in a row heading into the bye week is perfect for these red hot Cowboys. Dak Prescott finally threw an interception, but Dallas got a very solid road win at Lambeau. Oh and Zeke Elliot leads the league in rushing. Good draft class for Jerry Jones.

Falcons logo5. Atlanta Falcons (Last week: 6)
Even with a loss, Atlanta actually moves up in the power rankings. The Falcons got the short end of the stick on a no-call at the end of the game in Seattle. You can’t blame it all on that, but Atlanta held their own in Seattle.

Packers logo6. Green Bay Packers (Last week: 5)
Another week another question mark for the Packers. Aaron Rodgers looks pedestrian at best. The running game has disappeared and that defense finally broke in an embarrassing home loss for Green Bay.

Washington made up logo7. Washington (Last week: 12)
Is Washington really the number 7 team in the league? Probably not but they’ve won four in a row, including two divisional games. With so many of the top teams losing, its hard to justify them anywhere else.

Denver_Broncos8. Denver Broncos (Last week: 7)
The Chargers are better than their record indicates, but the Denver offense had a poor showing this week. Denver would drop more if it wasn’t for the parity in the league right now.

Bills logo9. Buffalo Bills (Last week: 13)
Make that four in a row for Rex Ryan’s crew. An absolute thrashing of the 49ers this weekend moves the Bills to 4-2 with chances to climb higher.

Chiefs Logo10. Kansas City Chiefs (Last week: 14)
It wasn’t always pretty, but that’s just how the Chiefs play football. Kansas City silenced the division rival Raiders and even though Oakland has a better record, the Chiefs look headed in the right direction.

Eagles Logo11. Philadelphia Eagles (Last week: 8)
Talk about coming back down to Earth. After a 3-0 start, Philly has dropped two straight. Both were by one score or less so no need to panic, but the expectations for Philly have been curbed.

Raiders logo12. Oakland Raiders (Last week: 10)
I mentioned last week that Oakland’s defense was lackluster. Well this week so was the offense. A 16-point loss to the division rival Chiefs at home definitely stings. Oakland, despite it 4-2 record, has a point differential of -11. Not good.

Arizona_Cardnals_logo_(1994-2004)13. Arizona Cardinals (Last week: 16)
Even if it was just the Jets, Arizona got back to .500 with a beatdown on Monday night. David Johnson scored three touchdowns and is third in the league in rushing. That defense had two picks and limited the Jets to three points. Now the real test comes with a visit from Seattle.

Giants Logo14. New York Giants (Last week: 18)
While still in the basement, the Giants got a big win at home this week. More importantly, Odell Beckham Jr. finally showed up. He had a career-high in yards and two 60-plus yard touchdowns, including the game winner. This was the type of win New York needed to banish some of their old demons.

Texans logo15. Houston Texans (Last week: 19)
Houston pulled off the comeback of the week with a home win over the Colts in overtime. Finding yourself down 17-3 at halftime isn’t reassuring, but a win is a win no less. It keeps the Texans atop the AFC South and knocks down their biggest challenger for that title.

Pittsburgh_Steelers logo16. Pittsburgh Steelers (Last week: 3)
It might be time for panic mode in Pittsburgh. Ben Roethlisberger will miss an estimate 4-6 weeks with a torn meniscus. And the Steelers got thoroughly beaten by Miami, whose only other win was against Cleveland. Not a great look, especially when you allow a 200-yard rusher either. Oh and the Patriots are visiting this weekend. Good luck Landry Jones.

Ravens logo17. Baltimore Ravens (Last week: 11)
This time the offense showed up, and the defense dropped the ball. That’s two straight losses for Baltimore. Things would be worse if it wasn’t for the unexpected turn Pittsburgh just took. This could be the Ravens division now.

Lions Logo

18. Detroit Lions (Last week: 20)
After looking down and out two weeks ago, the Lions are suddenly at .500. Both wins were solid, but Detroit has yet to show any signs of stability. If we see that, then this might be a playoff contender.

Saints logo19. New Orleans Saints (Last week: 24)
The Saints defense still looks terrible, so it’s a good thing that Drew Brees hasn’t lost a step. The New Orleans signal caller threw for 465 yards and 4 touchdowns. Unfortunately, the defense also allowed 21 points in the fourth quarter. Sean Payton can’t win every shootout.

Chargers logo20. San Diego Chargers (Last week: 26)
San Diego got a much need win against division rival Denver, breathing some life into their playoff aspirations. That might sound crazy because they are 2-4, but Philip Rivers could carry this team into the wildcard conversation.

Bengals Logo21. Cincinnati Bengals (Last week: 17)
Another week another deflating loss for Cincy. The Bengals came out strong against New England, only to fade in the second half. Cincinnati has scored 109 points so far this year, tied for the third worse mark in the conference.

Buccaneers logo22. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (Last week: 22)
A week theoretically let the Buccaneers get healthy, until word came out that Doug Martin suffered a setback. Jameis Winston needs to step up now and show that he has taken that step from his rookie to sophomore year.

Rams logo23. Los Angeles Rams (Last week: 15)
Never doubt Jeff Fisher’s ability to coach his team to a .500 record. Two straight losses look bad, but Case Keenum had a good day and found Kenny Britt all day long. If Todd Gurley ever got rolling like he did last season, Los Angeles could hang around in this wildcard picture.

Colts logo24. Indianapolis Colts (Last week: 21)
The Colts had Houston right where they wanted them, and then blew it. A win would’ve put Indy in a three-way tie atop the division with the Texans and Titans. Instead, the Colts’ coaching staff still has to figure out how to close games and protect Andrew Luck, two things they have struggled with in the least three seasons.

Dolphins logo25. Miami Dolphins (Last week: 30)
After proclaiming that Miami hit rock bottom a week ago, the Dolphins came back and shocked the Steelers. Yes it was without Ben Roethlisberger, but Jay Ajai ran for over 200 yards and the ‘Fins can say they aren’t the worst team in the AFC East.

Panthers logo26. Carolina Panthers (Last week: 23)
Carolina cannot seem to string together two consistent weeks of football. Cam Newton returned to jump-start the offense, but the defense allowed Drew Brees to have a field day. At 1-5, the Panthers look like they did two years ago where all Newton did was pout and walk out of pressers.

Titans logo27. Tennessee Titans (Last week: 29)
Don’t look now, but the Titans just hit the same number of wins through six weeks as they did all of last season. And they are only a game out of first place in the AFC South (man that division sucks). I’m not sold yet, because this was a two-point win over the winless Browns, but things are looking up for Tennessee.

Jaguars logo28. Jacksonville Jaguars (Last week: 28)
They barely squeaked out a win in Chicago, but Jacksonville does move to 2-4. This team has struggled to find an identity so far, as it can’t seem to effective run the ball and continues to turn it over. Gus Bradley still has a lot of work to do with this group.

Jets logo29. New York Jets (Last week: 25)
If you didn’t think it could any worse, it did. The Jets mustered on a field goal and both Ryan Fitzpatrick and Geno Smith threw interceptions against Arizona. Smith is set to start this week at Baltimore, but it probably won’t make a difference for this floundering Jets team.

49ers Logo30. San Francisco 49ers (Last week: 27)
Back to the basement is where San Francisco finds itself now. A blowout on the road in Buffalo certainly was not the way Colin Kaepernick wanted to debut this season, but he was probably an improvement over Blaine Gabbert. Chip Kelly is searching for answers, but it is clear that this team is in full scale rebuild mode.

Bears logo31. Chicago Bears (Last week: 31)
Chicago blew another one against an AFC South opponent. Brian Hoyer continues to play mistake free, but the offense is still ineffective. At least they seem to have a couple of nice pieces in Jordan Howard and Cameron Meredith.

Browns logo32. Cleveland Browns (Last week: 32)
It can only go up from here. Cleveland lost again, this time in a comeback attempt that just came up short. In other news, LeBron looks great in the preseason and the Indians are on the brink of a World Series appearance. And it’s not all bad for the Browns, they have Terrelle Pryor. Once healthy, this Cleveland team should be more competitive. Until then, it’s going to keep being ugly I think.