NFL Power Rankings – Week 7
Another week in the National Football League is in the books, and the teams at the very top pulled even further away from the rest of the league. With the quality of the middle teams in even more debate, let’s get to the power rankings.
32. Detroit Lions
Although they are no longer winless, needing overtime to beat a bad Bears team at home is nothing to get excited about. Plus, they were the beneficiaries of a weird referee decision on a touchdown. Nothing great happening in Detroit.
31. Jacksonville Jaguars (Down 3)
Just when you think the Jags might be different this year, they put up a stinker against Houston. They better hope that Allen Robinson isn’t too badly hurt after going down on Sunday.
30. Chicago Bears (Down 5)
They win this week if they played on a neutral field but, when you lose to the Lions right now, you got to drop in the rankings.
29. San Francisco 49ers (Up 2)
They’ve played better the past two weeks but I’m not quite a believer yet. They still have too many concerns on defense to be considered anything more than a gutsy team at home.
28. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (Down 1)
Hopefully young quarterback Jameis Winston uses the bye week to his advantage. If he corrects his mistakes and Martin plays as well as he had been, this team would be a tough out.
27. Washington Redskins (Down 1)
This team continues to show a lot of heart and they keep “playing the right way.” However, you have to get wins to be respected any further than that.
26. Houston Texans (Up 3)
I can’t get a read on this team at all. I will say, however, that Hoyer likely gives them their best chance to win on a weekly basis.
25. Tennessee Titans (Down 2)
They ran into a buzz saw this week, with the Dolphins looking to make a statement after all the coaching turmoil the past week. It’s not time to panic, but the Titans are coming back down to Earth.
24. Baltimore Ravens (Down 4)
Cross country game on the road is never an easy game for the road team. That being said, the defense is terrible and will lose a lot of games for the Ravens this year.
23. Miami Dolphins (Up 7)
This team experienced the biggest movement on this list and looked inspired under new coach Dan Campbell. If they can ride this wave, the Dolphins will be the team we expected them to be this year.
22. Kansas City Chiefs (Down 4)
I said I’d drop them if they came out flat, and flat they certainly were. They still have pieces to compete, but their season is all but over at this point.
21. New Orleans Saints (Up 3)
I still don’t believe in this team, but anyone who beats an undefeated squad deserves to jump in the rankings. Let’s see if they look this good next week.
20. Cleveland Browns (Up 1)
Putting up 23 against the best defense and taking them to overtime needs to be commended. Even with a lose, the Browns move up in the list.
19. Oakland Raiders (Up 3)
They move up due to the poor play of other teams. However, I still contend that this is a team to take very seriously this year.
18. St. Louis Rams (Down 2)
The more I think about this team, the more I remember that they have Nick Foles. No Bueno.
17. Dallas Cowboys (Down 2)
Moving on from Weeden and mixing up the backfield may work out for them, but they desperately need Dez and Romo back ASAP.
16. Philadelphia Eagles (Up 3)
This may very well be the best team in the NFC East (considering the injuries to Dallas), but the lackluster play from Sam Bradford won’t allow them to reach their full potential. He threw some atrocious interceptions on Monday night.
15. Buffalo Bills (Down 2)
This team is starting to look like the Jets of recent years: A tough bunch who talks too much and never seems to get it done against quality teams.
14. San Diego Chargers
I think the Chargers have a good team despite the recent loses, and in a division led by a Peyton Manning offense that does little to encourage, the Chargers could hang with them on any day.
13. New York Giants (Down 2)
I still believe that the Giants have the best team in the NFC East, even with their recent loss to Philadelphia and the eventual return of Dallas’ star players. However, my opinion will change quickly if their defense doesn’t improve.
12. Minnesota Vikings (Up 5)
This is one of the tougher teams to get a read on, but in a league with so much mediocre, the Vikings may just be good enough to make themselves a playoff contender.
11. Indianapolis Colts (Up 1)
Although they had what was probably the most disastrous play of the season up to this point, the Colts hung with the best team in football for most of the game. However, that play is something that simply doesn’t happen to great teams. The Colts will never be great this year.
10. Seattle Seahawks (Down 1)
The Seahawks defense proved what I speculated last week: they lack any sense of clutch. No defense touting themselves as the Legion of Boom should allow a game winning touchdown to the only viable receiving threat on the opposing team in Greg Olson. They deserve to be much lower, but the rest of the league is too uninspiring.
9. Pittsburgh Steelers (Up 1)
The Steel Curtain made a surprise appearance on Sunday, holding a good Cardinals offense to only 13 points. That, paired with the fact that they had to turn to their third-string quarterback, shows that this team can go against anyone.
8. Arizona Cardinals (Down 4)
A previously porous Pittsburgh defense held this team to very little points, showing some apparent flaws in their offense. However, they still look significantly better than any other team in their division.
7. Atlanta Falcons
This was clearly the weakest of the undefeated teams going into week 6, and they proved it by losing against a sub par opponent. They get Tennessee this week, which should provide them with a juicy bounce-back opportunity.
6. Denver Broncos (Down 1)
We’re here, Peyton Manning is officially a hinderance to this team. As I’ve said before, with that defense, they can still win with Manning at quarterback. It’s just hard to see them contending for a title with the way that Peyton has looked.
5. New York Jets (Up 3)
Clearly a favorite for a wild card spot, this team goes up against long time divisional foe the Patriots this weekend. Expect a great game, and a statement by the Jets if they can pull out a win in Foxborough.
4. Green Bay Packers (Down 1)
This is the second week in a row where the Packers left a bad taste in the mouth despite a win. A bye week will help them get healthy again, and hopefully we will see the resurgence of Lacy.
3. Carolina Panthers (Up 3)
Ok, I know I’m totally overreacting here but I can’t help it. The mark of a great team is to pull out tough wins on the road when no one expects you to do it. Everyone was picking Seattle and, although the Seahawks may not be good, it means a lot for the Panthers to get this one. Cam is making a legit case for MVP honors.
2. Cincinnati Bengals
Another player making the case for MVP honors is Andy Dalton, who impressed again on the road in the Ralph. These guys are one Patriots loss away from the top of the ranks.
1. New England Patriots
The train keeps rolling this weekend when the Pats get the Jets at home. This will be the Patriots’ biggest test to date, so it’ll be interested to see how they handle it.
Kyle Kirby covers the NFL for MFST, you can follow the site on Twitter @MyFntsySprtsTlk
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