NFL Week 2 Power Rankings: A New No.1 and 10-Spot DropsBy Brett Smiley | Published: September 13, 2017 at 9:42 am
NFL Week 1 is firmly in the books and we know where public perception lies after reviewing the action and the Westgate Las Vegas SuperContest Standings, it’s time to take stock of the entire league. Here we go from 32 to 1 with tiers separating where necessary.
The Week 2 NFL Power Rankings Sees a Lot of Movement, Some Big Falls and the New England Patriots Removed From the Top Spot
THE PURE MISERY TIER
32. New York Jets (0-1)(Last Week: 32)
They are who we thought they were.
31. Indianapolis Colts (0-1)(LW: 27)
The Scott Tolzien-”led” Colts got their asses kicked so badly by the Rams that head coach Chuck Pagano thought they had just played the 49ers.
Chuck Pagano thought they played the 49ers ? pic.twitter.com/NfogG5SeKg
— The Xtra Points (@TheXtraPoints1) September 11, 2017
ASCENDING FROM ROCK BOTTOM
30. Cleveland Browns (0-1) (LW: 31)
Who expected the Browns to recover and cover after a blocked punt return touchdown by Pittsburgh on Cleveland’s opening possession? Rookie DeShone Kizer was respectable in his first start but bears responsibility for a few of those seven Steelers sacks.
29. San Francisco 49ers (0-1) (LW: 30)
Disappointing showing offensively by the 49ers in Kyle Shanahan’s debut. At least in some parallel Pagano planet the 49ers kicked some ass.
A MIXED BIG OF MEDIOCRITY AND SADNESS
28. Cincinnati Bengals (0-1) (LW 18)
Cincy dropped a full 10 after Andy Dalton’s dreadful five-turnover performance behind a pretty bad offensive line. Marvin Lewis may not be around for the rebuild.
27. Chicago Bears (0-1) (LW: 29)
Wish I could put the Bears higher after a great effort against the Falcons but no points for moral victories. Although they did climb two spots thanks to the Colts and Niners.
26. Buffalo Bills (1-0) (LW: 26)
Even with lots of movement in the ranks, the Bills get no credit for beating the Jets. First-year head coach Sean McDermott now heads back to Carolina (probably on the back of LeSean McCoy) where he served from 2011-2016 as the defensive coordinator.
25. New Orleans Saints (0-1) (LW: 22)
They are who we thought they were: All offense, no defense. One more 7-9 season (four out of the last five) an Sean Payton will be pushing Jeff Fisher territory, only with offense/defense failures reversed.
PLAYOFFS BUBBLE BUBBLE
24. Jacksonville Jaguars (1-0) (LW: 28)
We know the defense is good and getting better but they’re not going to notch 10 sacks per game as they did at Houston. Let’s see what Leonard Fournette and the run game can do against the Titans in Week 2.
23. Miami Dolphins (0-0) (LW: 24)
No game last week due to Hurricane Irma, so the they’ll open the season with a trip to the Los Angeles Chargers.
22. Arizona Cardinals (0-1) (LW: 12)
Adding injury to a late game collapse at Detroit, the Cards have lost David Johnson for about three months after surgery to repair his dislocated wrist.
21. Los Angeles Rams (1-0) (LW: 25)
Everything about the Rams and especially second-year QB Jared Goff looked better on Sunday and they didn’t even have standout DT Aaron Donald. A more formidable opponent, Washington, comes to town on Sunday.
20. Detroit Lions (1-0) (LW: 24)
Apparently the Lions are intent on waiting until fourth quarters to start playing their best football. It’s fun to watch but a brutal seven game stretch (@NYG, vs. ATL, @MIN, vs. CAR, @NO, vs. PITT, @GB) is probably going to keep them in Double Bubble territory.
19. Los Angeles Chargers (0-1) (LW: 21)
“I’ll tell you the same thing I told Melvin [Gordon] on the sidelines,” head coach Anthony Lynn told reporters on Monday, “Elite backs in this league, they’re going to win more one-on-ones.” Gordon managed only 3 yards per carry on 18 carries against Denver.
18. Washington Redskins (0-1) (LW: 20)
Thanks to the falling Bengals and Cardinals, the Redskins (as well as the Chargers) rose two spots despite a loss. Fine. Against lesser defenses than Philadelphia’s, Washington will put up points but this team is pretty much the definition of .500.
17. Houston Texans (0-1) (LW: 15)
Ready or not, rookie Deshaun Watson is taking over as the starter and he’d better be quick study with the Patriots, Titans and Chiefs on deck after the Bengals.
16. Baltimore Ravens (1-0) (LW: 17)
They’re not quite as good as the Bengals just made them look but that defense is pretty darn good (again). Tough loss on offense with Danny Woodhead (hamstring, 6-8 weeks), so it’s next man up (Buck Allen).
15. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (0-0) (LW: 16)
Idle like Miami in Week 1. The Bears and former Buccaneer Mike Glennon are on tap at home.
14. New York Giants (0-1) (LW: 6)
This season the Giants’ offensive line is going to get Eli Manning killed or give me a coronary, or both. No, Jerry Reese, you can’t cross your fingers and wish away incompetence.
13. Tennessee Titans (0-1) (LW: 10)
If you can’t hang at home against one of the conference’s best (Oakland), you’re not among them. DeMarco Murray was surprisingly ineffective: take away his 21-yard gainer and he averaged just 2 yards on 11 totes.
JANUARY ON THE RADAR
12. Philadelphia Eagles (1-0) (LW: 19)
That front seven is pretty scary. Let’s see if Carson Wentz can master the art of accuracy like he has the spin move.
11. Denver Broncos (1-0) (LW: 14)
A lot of folks have written off the Broncos as contenders but Trevor Siemian should, unlike Rod Stewart, give fans a reason to believe.
10. Carolina Panthers (1-0) (LW: 13)
Hey, it’s the Broncos’ Super Bowl 50 dance partner. Cam Newton isn’t fully recovered yet from the shoulder injury but the defense looks good enough to buy him time.
9. Minnesota Vikings (1-0) (LW: 11)
Yes folks, Sam Bradford is pretty good when he has time and weapons and a running game. The Norsemen are going to challenge the Packers for the division.
FEBRUARY ON THE MIND
8. Oakland Raiders (1-0) (LW: 8)
Despite all the reshuffling and a convincing win on the road, I couldn’t justify putting the Raiders higher. A date this Sunday against the Jets should be… fun, but won’t tell us much more.
7. Seattle Seahawks (0-1) (LW: 3)
The defense remains ferocious. But if the Giants and Seahawks traded offensive lines in the woods and nobody was there to see it, would they still stink?
6. Kansas City Chiefs (1-0) (LW: 9)
Good news: Showed serious fortitude and firepower on the road against the defending champs, rendering Tom Brady totally ineffective in the fourth quarter. Really bad news: They lost stud safety Eric Berry for the year to a ruptured Achilles tendon.
5. Dallas Cowboys (1-0) (LW: 7)
Looks like Zeke Elliott will get a full 16-plus helpings of carries as his protracted legal battle against the shield (an NFL speciality) may extend beyond this season. Obviously that’d be a huge benefit to Big D.
4. Atlanta Falcons (1-0) (LW: 5)
Came very close to opening with an L at Chicago but pulled it out. A rematch of the NFC Championship game against Green Bay is your game of the week on Sunday night, unless you’re a sadist awaiting Jets-Raiders.
THE UPPER ECHELON
3. Pittsburgh Steelers (1-0) (LW: 2)
Apparently not beating the Browns handily enough and failing to cover the spread can get you demoted one spot here. What is happening?! Rookie TJ Watt (two sacks, one pick in debut) may win Rookie of the Year.
2. New England Patriots (0-1) (LW: 1)
Rest assured I struggled with removing the Pats from the top spot. BB and TB12 will adjust and they will still win 12 to 13 games, as always.
1. Green Bay Packers (1-0) (LW: 4)
Rodgers still Rodgersin’, although the offensive line got worked a bit. It was no small feat fending off Seattle’s defense. Now their own defense, which left much to be desired last year, is emphasizing speed with its “Nitro” package. Next up: Week 2 and Ludicrous Speed.