An unfortunate con of the change to colder weather, is many get sick and their human tendency is to not be alone. This is why your #D46 Power Rankings come on a Thursday afternoon rather than a Tuesday. Perhaps the longer time removed will bring me to a more sane review of the National Football League teams.
32. Detroit Lions (2-7) — But they beat the Green Bay Packers at Lambeau? I know, but who cares? This team is such a disappointment from last year’s playoff team, and needs more than just one win to convince me they’re not the worst team in the league. They’ve cleaned the front office midseason and there’s questions of who returns in August next year.
31. San Diego Chargers (2-7) — The Chargers get a bye week, and thankfully, they don’t drop to thirty-two.
30. Tennessee Titans (2-7) — They lost to an undefeated Panthers team, so I saw that coming. The Titans are at the bottom of the pack this year because there’s nothing around Mariota, and they’ve already fired their head coach Ken Whisenhunt. They need to hire a great coach in January who can mentor Mariota into what they expected, taking him in the first round of the draft.
29. Cleveland Browns (2-8) — It’s Cleveland, what else can you say?
28. Dallas Cowboys (2-7) — “No Romo. No Wins.” The saying held true throughout, dropping seven games without their franchise quarterback, falling to 2-7. This has made a once dreaded “8-8 season”, now, a pipe dream. The Cowboys lost to the Buccaneers and it was embarrassing. They get Romo back against the Dolphins, but it might be too late to do much. There’s more issues on this team than Tony Romo’s 7-game absence.
27. Baltimore Ravens (2-7) — This team lost a home game to the Jacksonville Jaguars. Grant it, some have come out and said the referees messed up, but did that help Duke? It won’t help Baltimore, at least, as they drop two spots in my rankings.
26. New Orleans Saints (4-6) — I’m dropping this team ten spots after a 47-14 loss up at Washington. They fired their defensive coordinator Rob Ryan, and with rumors that Sean Payton is on his way out, this team is a disaster.
25. San Fransisco 49ers (3-6) — They can be very grateful for the woes of the Cowboys, Ravens, and Saints, or else they wouldn’t move up three spots during their bye week.
24. Jacksonville Jaguars (3-6) — A nice road win against the Ravens will help you in my ranks if you get me a pick right in the #WeeklyFood Picks.
23. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (4-5) — I keep this team stationary at 23 after a 10-6 home victory over the Cowboys. This team is still horrendous. Of the eleven 4-5 teams, they have the worst point differential in the league. Tampa’s not doing anything in the NFC South, and their best bet would be to tank the rest of the way and get themselves a decent pick.
22. Chicago Bears (4-5) — I’m not buying into this team just yet. They’re in a division along with Minnesota and Green Bay, so I don’t see the Bears being more than a six or seven win team now. Jay Cutler’s had a better year when everyone threw the towel in on him, but I don’t have much faith in that defense, which allows 26 points per game.
21. St. Louis Rams (4-5) — Aaaand they’re back down again. When they bench Nick Foles for Case Keenum, that’ll cause you from being a top-12 team, to becoming a bottom-12 team.
20. Miami Dolphins (4-5) — They move a couple spots forward after a nice road win against the Eagles, coming from behind. These players are fighting for Dan Campbell, and if they continue to do so, Campbell will have a head coaching job somewhere next season, even if the Dolphins aren’t smart enough to keep him around.
19. Kansas City Chiefs (4-5) — A three-game win streak is impressive, especially without Jamaal Charles, and the way they went to Denver and won was incredible, but can we slow down before we crown them a team that can get in the AFC Wild Card? If they can win another three, I’ll believe this team isn’t as bad as I thought.
18. Indianapolis Colts (4-5) — The Colts stay kaput at 18 on their bye week, even with questions about Andrew Luck’s health.
17. Washington Redskins (4-5) — This team is hard to figure out, but they have a shot in the NFC East… If they win that division, anything’s possible in the National Football League.
16. Philadelphia Eagles (4-5) — I’ve said this all along, they’re middle of the pack. They drop one spot after a home loss to the South Beach Dolphins, and who could’ve foreseen Sam Bradford getting hurt.
15. Oakland Raiders (4-5) — I move them down a couple spots after a home loss to a good Vikings team, but you have to wonder how this team fares against elite teams. They can beat up on the bottomfeeding teams of the NFL, but they won’t be playing those come January, if they want to make it there.
14. Buffalo Bills (5-4) — An incredible road victory against the Jets last week that I didn’t predict. It was impressive, but I want to see if that win is more than just emotion, that the team is for real about contending for a wild card spot. I’m in like with Tyrod Taylor and what he’s able to bring to this Bills team, with a nice record as the starter.
13. Houston Texans (4-5) — Instantly, this team gets a lot of respect on a two-game win streak, and now they’ve beaten the Bengals on the road, ending Cincinnati’s undefeated streak. They climb up seven spots in the ranks, but have to win a couple games to get going. Luckily, they can win this division, and at this rate, are my favorites to do so, now that this defense has awaken.
12. New York Giants (5-5) — This team nearly beat the Patriots as expected, and likely do if the Beckham call is a touchdown rather than an incomplete pass. I still love this team as the favorite in the NFC East, and could likely do damage in the playoffs.
11. Atlanta Falcons (6-3) — I won’t move this team at all on their bye week with two consecutive losses. Hopefully they’ve fixed their issues before their game against the Colts on Sunday.
10. Seattle Seahawks (4-5) — People can say I’m giving this team plenty of leeway due to their recent success, but can you blame me? This team can get it going enough to get in the playoffs, and they could be onto big things. I won’t penalize them much for losing a division game to the Cardinals, perhaps the best or second-best team in the NFC right now.
9. New York Jets (5-4) — A nice start by Todd Bowles, but they’ve been shaky since, mostly because of the quarterback situation has become uncertain with injuries. The Jets still possess an outstanding defense, and Bowles is just going to have to figure out a way to ride that defense. Jets need to get a running game going again to help keep their spot at nine.
8. Pittsburgh Steelers (6-4) — Despite all their injuries (Roethlisberger, Bell) they’ve been able to make things work. The Steelers defense has exceeded expectations entering the season, only giving up 19.1 PPG, which is fifth-best in the NFL. Landry Jones and DeAngelo Williams can surely score 20 points to win games, if need be.
7. Green Bay Packers (6-3) — You know how the Lions didn’t move any after a win? Well, the Packers don’t move any after a loss. The Packers began 6-0 and have lost three straight games, but they can still turn things around. Correct me if I’m wrong, but there’s no catastrophic injury to the Packers team, and they still have Aaron Rodgers and a good enough defense. There’s nothing here that can’t be fixed, and as it gets colder weather, the Packers will still be contenders.
6. Denver Broncos (7-2) — I respect this defense, or else, they’d be outside the top ten. Peyton Manning has finally broken down as I accurately predicted, and they’ve lost two straight games, including a home game trainwreck to the Kansas City Chiefs. Denver has an amazing defense, but they better get something going offensively behind Brock Osweiler, or else they’re going to continue to fall.
5. Cincinnati Bengals (8-1) — Their first loss is suffered to the Texans at home in a primetime game; Why am I not surprised? Andy Dalton is 4-12 in career primetime or playoff games, so that alarms me. This is a talented team recognized by every expert in America, but can they not fall apart?
4. Minnesota Vikings (7-2) — The Vikings have everything you want, offense, defense, they’ve got it all right now. The Vikings don’t have an easy division with the Packers, but the Vikings are the “under-the-radar” team, much like the Cowboys were last year, relying on their running game’s success. The Vikings have impressed many, including myself.
3. Arizona Cardinals (7-2) — I listen to Colin Cowherd often, and he’s the biggest Patriots supporter I know, but in his Herd Hierarchy, he ranks the Cardinals higher than the Patriots this week. I know Arizona had a big win at Seattle, but let’s slow down. Arizona is a top three team though, as I’ve supported their incredible point differential numbers from the start.
2. Carolina Panthers (9-0) — The Panthers went on the road when most people thought they’d get upset by the Titans, yet they win 27-10. I’m impressed with the Panthers and their defense, but more impressed with Cam Newton’s matured growth since entering the league. This is my favorite team in the NFC until someone can upset them, which might come sooner rather than later.
1. New England Patriots (9-0) — I have never seen a team stay at the top of these ranks like the Patriots have, and now EVERYONE is trying to find the better team, but truth of the matter is, there’s not a better team. People make their cases for the Panthers, Cardinals, Bengals, Broncos, but I’m just sitting here watching the Patriots bend the rules, but topple each opponent they have. New England just went through their toughest test against the Giants, and unless they slip against a division rival, they’ll go 16-0 and pursue the ’72 Dolphins season they fell short of in 2007.
Do you agree or disagree this week with the #D46 Power Rankings? Comment below your thoughts as it pertains to these ranks! Are the Patriots still number one after all this time?