1. Los Angeles Rams (No Movement):
LA stays on top for the third straight week. The offense can score at will and even in a week where the defense didn’t play great, they can count on Aaron Donald to step up and close out game.
2. Kansas City Chiefs (No Movement):
“Showtime Mahomes” isn’t a catchy nickname but it’s certainty fitting. Facing a fourth quarter deficit, in a rowdy Denver environment, Patrick Mahomes was stellar and passed his first true test of the season. We’re watching the birth of a star.
3. New Orleans Saints (Up 2 spots):
With an offense that features Drew Brees, Alvin Kamara, and Michael Thomas, who would have thought that third string QB/punt returner Taysom Hill, would be the most intriguing player to watch weekly?
4. New England Patriots (Up 2 spots):
All is right with the world. The Patriots looked dominate and welcome back Julian Edelman this week. The only concern is if Rob Gronkowski will be ready for Thursday’s game.
5. Jacksonville Jaguars (Up 2 spots):
There’s something about the AFC East that brings out the best in Blake Bortles. The only downside about the Jags offense in week 4 is that Leonard Fournette’s hamstring injury just won’t go away and history shows that he’ll probably be dealing with it for the rest of the season.
6. Minnesota Vikings (Down 2 Spots):
Tough two weeks for the Vikings, but I won’t hold a loss to the Rams against them. They have a chance to bounce back and avenge their NFC Championship loss this week against the struggling Eagles.
7. Eagles (Down 4 Spots):
Might be time to worry a bit. The secondary is getting torched and Carson Wentz has been sacked eight times in two weeks. With the Minnesota Vikings coming to town this week, the Eagles are going to have to sober up quickly from their Super Bowl hangover.
8. Carolina Panthers (No Movement): Bye week
9. Green Bay Packers (No Movement):
The Packers offense is still a work in progress. While I’m confident that it will improve, some of Aaron Rodgers’ comments this week has raised a few eyebrows about his relationship with Mike McCarthy.
10. Chicago Bears (Up 2 Spots):
Can’t say I saw that coming. After struggling for three weeks, Mitchell Trubisky exploded for six TD passes against Tampa Bay. If Trubisky can produce at half that rate for the rest of the season, the Bears will be in great shape behind this defense.
11. Baltimore Ravens (Up 4 Spots):
Jimmy Smith is returning from his suspension to a defense that has looked stout the past two weeks. Through four games, the Ravens look like the favorites in the AFC North.
12. Cincinnati Bengals (Up 4 spots):
We need to be talking more about the Bengals offense. Andy Dalton was terrific again and he’s found a stud in WR Tyler Boyd to pair with A.J. Green. The Tyler Eifert injury is a bummer, but they’re used to playing without him. Vontaze Burfict returns from his suspension this week and Cincinnati may also get another boost if Joe Mixon is cleared to play. I’m hopping on the orange-striped bandwagon.
13. Pittsburgh Steelers (Down 3 Spots):
I’m inches away from pushing the panic button on the NFL’s Kardashians. The defense can’t stop anyone and there’s no telling what you’re going to get out of Ben Roethlisberger each week.
14. Tennessee Titans (Up 6 Spots):
I’m buying stock. The defense has played well and the duel-threat that Marcus Mariota brings to the table is proving difficult to defend. Just please let him stay healthy.Los Angeles Chargers (Up 1 spot): It’s fascinating how a team can struggle with field goals for three straight years. Every week you can count on 2-3 misses that will keep the opponent alive.
15. Los Angeles Chargers (Up 1 spot):
It’s fascinating how a team can struggle with field goals for three straight years. Every week you can count on 2-3 misses that will keep the opponent alive.
16. Atlanta Falcons (Down 3 Spots):
Injuries have derailed this defense and the offense is going to have to score close to 40 a week to have a chance. Not a great game plan in a stacked NFC.
17. Denver Broncos (No Movement):
Monday night’s loss was a game playoff teams have to win. Denver couldn’t get off the field on 3rd down in the fourth quarter, and watched their $18 million QB overthrow a game winning touchdown. This loss is going to haunt them the remainder of the season.
18. Miami Dolphins (Down 7 Spots):
By far the biggest disappointment of week 4. Faced with their first true challenge of the season, Miami looked helpless. Now facing a tough three week stretch, the Dolphins season may hinge on how they respond. It’s truly amazing how quickly a team’s outlook can change in the NFL.
19. Washington Redskins (Up 2 Spots):
I typically don’t like moving teams during a bye week, but it’s hard for me say with any certainty that any team listed below deserves to be ranked higher than Washington.
20. Dallas Cowboys (Up 5 Spots):
Dallas may have finally learned how to use Ezekiel Elliott as a receiver and Dak Prescott reminded the league that he can throw the ball down field. The defense struggled a bit but are getting help with the return of David Irving.
21. Detroit Lions (Up 1 spot):
The defense was a mess with penalties and giving up big plays, but at least the offense has started to click the past couple weeks.
22. New York Giants (Down 3 Spots):
Even a struggling Saints defense couldn’t jumpstart the Giants offense. The decision to draft Saquon Barkley and run it back with Eli Manning is starting to look like a massive error.
23. Seattle Seahawks (No Movement):
Seattle narrowly escaped against possibly the worst team in football, and lost Earl Thomas and Will Dissly for the season in the process. Difficult to be optimistic with the Rams next up on their schedule.
24. Oakland Raiders (No Movement):
Finally! It took a number of big breaks, but Jon Gruden has a win this decade. This defense gives me no faith going forward, but Oakland’s schedule for the next month is extremely favorable. There’s potential to salvage the season.
25. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (Down 7 spots):
Don’t cry because Fitzmagic is over. Smile because it happened.
26. Houston Texans (No Movement):
The season is holding on by a thread thanks to the Colts’ questionable strategy in overtime, but with two straight home games against Dallas and Buffalo, Houston has an opportunity to get back in the mix.
27. Cleveland Browns (No Movement):
Forget the loss. The Browns are fun and were a controversial overturned spot away from winning their second in a row.
28. Indianapolis Colts (Up 1 Spot):
Frank Reich’s decision to go for it on 4th and 4 from his own 43-yard line has sparked debate, but when you’re coaching a team this bad why not go for it? Is there really a difference between finishing the season at 6-10 as opposed to 6-9-1? The players have voiced their support for the call so I give him props for not settling for a tie.
29. San Francisco 49ers (Up 1 Spot):
The 49ers decision to ride with C.J. Beathard for the remainder of the season shocked some, but his performance on Sunday showed why they like him. He’s not Jimmy Garoppolo (or even half of him,) but he looked poised and ready to help guide this club through twelve more grueling games.
30. New York Jets (Down 2 Spots):
At least we’ll have week 1 to remember. The regression since then has been steep and the countdown to Todd Bowles’ firing has begun.
31. Arizona Cardinals (Up 1 Spot):
There was some hope going into the season but frankly, Arizona is a bad team. However, there were a few flashes from Josh Rosen that at least give us something to be excited about each week.
32. Buffalo Bills ():
Week 3 was fun but unfortunately, the Bills are who we thought they were… the worst team in the league.