NFL Power Rankings – Week 6
Things change rapidly in the NFL, as each week provides us with more information on each team and their potential to find success as the season progresses. It may be a late start, but the first five weeks of the season has provided us with enough knowledge to start a power rankings. Let’s get to it.
32. Detroit Lions
The most depressing stat for Lions fans: Matthew Stafford has turned the ball over six times in three games. Sunday was just a sign of things to come for Detroit and their embattled quarterback.
31. San Francisco 49ers
They put up a decent fight against a good Giants team on the road, but that doesn’t change their record and the division they’re in. Gone are the days when Kaepernick was a Super Bowl caliber quarterback.
30. Miami Dolphins
When teams fire their coach at this time of the year, it usually means they are punting on the season. Their only hope is to wisen up and get Lamar Miller more involved.
29. Houston Texans
It’s one thing to have a quarterback controversy, but it’s a whole other thing when one of those quarterbacks is clearly pouting on the sidelines. JJ Watt keeps this team from being lower.
28. Jacksonville Jaguars
There is a lot to like in Jacksonville, but to be respected you have to beat up on bad teams like the Bucs. Wins are still the most important thing in the NFL.
27. Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Jameis better hope people forget the near-disastrous almost-turnover he had in this game. They won, and they’ll win more if the Muscle Hamster keeps playing like he has been.
26. Washington Redskins
This defense has looked good thus far, putting up an impressive outing on the road against Atlanta. However, how high can your ceiling be with Kirk Cousins under center?
25. Chicago Bears
Jay Cutler looked decent against the Chiefs but this team still does little to inspire. Attribute a lot of this win to the deflation of the Chiefs after Charles’ injury.
24. New Orleans Saints
This team stinks. There is really no other way to put it. If they didn’t have Drew Brees, they’d be ranked much lower.
23. Tennessee Titans
I don’t know why, but I like this team. They put up a fight against Buffalo (who, in fairness, may not be that good) and don’t seem like they’ll lie down for anyone.
22. Oakland Raiders
This is a tough bunch, and Derek Carr looked as good as any young QB could against a stifling Broncos defense. Something always seems to be missing with Oakland, but they finally seem to be moving in the right direction.
21. Cleveland Browns
Good road win over a divisional opponent in overtime. Looks like they made the right choice choosing McCown over Johnny Football.
20. Baltimore Ravens
Even though they lost again at home to the Browns, this team still has enough talent to be very competitive. They have to keep feeding Forsett to make this happen.
19. Philadelphia Eagles
Now that’s the team we expected when the season started. Let’s see them beat a decent defense before we get too excited though.
18. Kansas City Chiefs
High ranking, I know, but here me out. I think the Chiefs will scrape by without Jamaal Charles, I like the defense, and Alex Smith has been fine. If they put up a stinker next week, however, they will plummet down the list.
17. Minnesota Vikings
Adrian Petersen looks great and this team seems capable of putting up a good fight every week. Although we all expected a little more out of Teddy Bridgewater, the Vikings will always find success if they keep handing the ball off to their running back.
16. St. Louis Rams
Good defense, good running game and a good outing on the road against Green Bay. However, similar to the Redskins, how much can you do with Nick Foles as your QB?
15. Dallas Cowboys
This defense, with the addition of Greg Hardy, looks fearsome for opposing quarterbacks. It’s hard to look good against Brady, but at full health, this team could be very dangerous.
14. San Diego Chargers
Philip Rivers looks ready to tear up the league now that he has Antonio Gates to throw the ball to again. That being said, the defense leaves a lot to be desired, falling late to a backup quarterback who is clearly out of his prime at home.
13. Buffalo Bills
Hard win on the road, but these are the games that good teams are able to pull out. Tyrod Taylor is starting to look like a young Michael Vick whose legs will keep the Bills alive at all times.
12. Indianapolis Colts
Does this team absolutely need Andrew Luck right now? At 3-2 in a terrible division, this team can afford to let Luck rest up so that he’s completely healthy when he comes back.
11. New York Giants
They are still the best team in their division, but there are definitely some things to worry about after Sunday night. First, they should have destroyed a terrible 49ers team at home. On top of that, now they have to be concerned with nagging injuries from their best player. If Beckham stays healthy they will continue to improve.
10. Pittsburgh Steelers
This team might be top-five worthy once they get Big Ben back, but you have to temper your expectations with Vick under center and with the defense playing so poorly. However, when you have Le’Veon Bell in your backfield (who’s looking like the best all around back in football right now) you can afford to take chances like the Steelers did on Monday night.
9. Seattle Seahawks
At 2-3, the Seahawks’ spot on these rankings is almost purely attributed to the team they used to be. It’s clear that team is still there, but the defense is starting to show a lack of “clutch-ness” that made them great in past seasons. This team is one defensive play of the year on Calvin Johnson from having only one win.
8. New York Jets
Sometimes having a bye week can do a lot to help people appreciate how good a team is. The defense is solid and Chris Ivory looks like a top-five running back in the league. This is a team who may be even scarier in the winter.
7. Atlanta Falcons
You can’t argue with undefeated, and Devonta Freeman has been the best player in the league over the past three weeks, no doubt. However, you have to smack around inferior teams at home if you are an elite squad. This team isn’t elite yet.
6. Carolina Panthers
This team’s only true offensive weapon is Cam Newton, but their defense has been so great that it hasn’t mattered. Josh Norman has been the best defensive player of the season at this point and, if he keeps playing like this, the Panthers will be playoff bound.
5. Denver Broncos
Ok, here’s the deal. The Broncos defense is absolutely superb, clicking on a level that gives them a chance to beat any team, anywhere. Unfortunately, Peyton Manning seems to have lost all velocity on his throws. The Broncos only need a game-manager quarterback to win it all, but its sad to think that we may be getting to this point with Peyton.
4. Arizona Cardinals
The Cardinals have been steamrolling teams this season, only falling to a Rams team boasting the debut of Todd Gurley. Carson Palmer has been a fantasy superstar, and Chris Johnson looks like he’s back to his CJ2K days.
3. Green Bay Packers
Aaron Rodgers is still the best quarterback in the league. As long as the Packers have him, they will always be a top five team. Little more needs to be said than that.
2. Cincinnati Bengals
Although they don’t top the list, the Bengals are easily the most impressive team in the league through five weeks. They’ve come through with some very tough wins over good teams, culminating last week with a come from behind victory over the Seahawks. Andy Dalton is firing on all cylinders, and even with poor play from Jeremy Hill, the Bengals have a plethora of talent on offense.
1. New England Patriots
The Patriots look like they did in 2007, rolling over teams like its nothing. This team is the absolute class of the AFC, with Tom Brady playing like a man possessed. It’ll be interesting to see how they fare against a defense like Denver’s but, until then, consider the Patriots to be the team to beat in the NFL.
Kyle Kirby covers the NFL for MFST. You can follow him on Twitter @couch_qb