Chippa is back for his much-anticipated NFL Power Rankings, this time moving to his top 20. Next week we will see his full 32-team rankings thru week 13.
- Philadelphia Eagles (Last Week:1)
No-one can argue with the outright leader and number one, and it’s the Eagles who have cemented this spot for two weeks in a row. Carson Wentz continues to look sharp and his defense shut-down the Cowboys to give them a convincing 37-9 win on national TV.
- New Orleans Saints (Last Week: 3)
This rejuvenated New Orleans side is the first team in the Super Bowl era to win eight consecutive games after starting the season 0-2, and while we have to continue giving credit to Drew Brees it’s the unlikely result of their overall pass defense that spurred them to this unbelievable streak. They capped off a remarkable fourth-quarter comeback to beat Washington at home after being 31-17 down!
- Pittsburgh Steelers (Last Week: 4)
Thursday Night Football was a cakewalk against a very disappointing Titans outfit, and Antonio Brown again showed why he’s the greatest wide receiver in the NFL since Jerry Rice.
- Minnesota Vikings (Last Week: 6)
A big mover entering the top five after a highly-impressive win against a high-octane Rams defense, keeping them to only one touchdown all game. This Vikings defense continues to prove to the NFL world why they should be considered as the best all-round defensive unit in the competition.
- New England Patriots (Last Week: 5)
Despite a Mexican demolition job over the Raiders in Mexico City, the Pats have stayed at fifth place due to the all-round productivity of the four teams above them. They’re on their way to securing another AFC East divisional title, and their resurrection is again due to a defense that held Derek Carr and co. to only 8 points, their fourth game conceding two touchdowns or less since the start of their six-game winning streak.
- Los Angeles Rams (Last Week: 2)
I know what you’re thinking… Why drop the Rams four spots after just one unconvincing loss to the Vikings? Answer: They have only beaten ONE team in my top ten rankings (Jacksonville), which may suggest that their 7-3 record may be due to a very helpful fixture. They had a chance to impress against an established team in the Vikings but looked an absolute shell of themselves.
- Jacksonville Jaguars (Last Week: 7)
They beat the Browns this week….. Yes their defense again looked solid and Leonard Fournette played a terrific game despite ankle concerns, but I’m not taking much away from last week’s win.
- Carolina Panthers (Last Week: 9)
With impressive seasons so far from Philly, Pittsburgh and co, the Panthers have started to fly under the radar to record their third win in a row which suggests they may be hitting some form at the right time of the season. Their offense may still look a little iffy, but they are finally starting to utilize rookie Christian McCaffrey the right way and their run defense is the benchmark of the league.
- Atlanta Falcons (Last Week: 14)
I was hard on them last week, but the Falcons proved against Seattle that they are still a team that can take it up to the best of them if they are firing on all cylinders. Another shocking kicking night for Blair Walsh gets the assist, though.
- Seattle Seahawks (Last Week: 11)
Read above. If they had a good kicker, they’d be 8-2 and truly in top five contention, but they still conceded 34 points which proved my point last week that without Richard Sherman (and now Cam Chancellor) that their defense can be exploited in the last third of the regular season.
- Kansas City Chiefs (Last Week: 8)
The reason for their high drop is simple… They lost to the Giants and only put up 9 points. They’ve won one game over their last five which has put them in real danger to miss out on the playoffs if the Chargers and Raiders can make a late push in the AFC West.
- Detroit Lions (Last Week: 15)
Okay, so their last three wins were against an Aaron Rodger-less Packers, the 0-10 Browns and the Bears, but a three-game winning streak in the NFL is still a good run and this might be the little kick up the backside that can ignite them to a wildcard position. They face the Vikings this week in what will be one of the games of the round!
- Baltimore Ravens (Last Week: N/A)
The Ravens enter the top 16 for the first time due to the shutout they put up over the struggling Packers, which shows that it is again their defense that is carrying ‘elite’ QB Joe Flacco. Due to a weak AFC conference, the Ravens can still clinch a wildcard spot despite their obvious inconsistencies.
- Dallas Cowboys (Last Week: 12)
‘We Dem Boyz’…. That will sit on the couch in January watching the playoffs on a TV. Their horrible loss against the Eagles all but ends their hopes of a possible wildcard spot considering the competition fighting for them two spots. They currently sit tenth in the conference and are without Zeke for another month.
- Buffalo Bills (Last Week: 13)
I only dropped the Bills two spots due to the fact that it’s their GM and coach that cannot make a right call at the quarterback position. Nathan Peterman threw 5 interceptions to half time and was eventually benched at the main break, and as a result put their sound defense on the back foot to concede a whopping 50+ points. LeSean McCoy was the only consolation coming out of this performance.
- Green Bay Packers (Last Week: N/A)
The Packers make the top 16 even though they were shutout this past weekend? Yes. And you know why? Look at the teams below them. Unfortunately Green Bay will have to set up some cheese platters at home and watch the rest of the NFL battle it out for the Lombardi Trophy, because their team will not be there.
- Tennessee Titans (Last Week: 10)
It’s a big drop, and for good reason. Before their humiliation against the Steelers they were on a commanding four-game winning streak, but their performance on the weekend showed that they are simply not good enough against quality opposition. Marcus Mariota does not look like a number two selection and their pass defense needs some serious work.
- Houston Texans (Last Week: N/A)
There’s still some fight in this team yet despite losing rookie DeShaun Watson and elite veteran J.J Watt to season-ending injuries. They put up 31 against a dismal Arizona outfit and while doing so unleashed another rookie talent in RB Dont’a Foreman, recording 65 rush yards and 2 TDs in what was a ‘savage’ outing in Texas. They face the Ravens next.
- Oakland Raiders (Last Week: N/A)
I just don’t know what’s going on with this team… Then again nobody does. I had both the Raiders and Titans as true AFC Championship contenders but they just cannot seem to get a rhythm going, and when they do their starting QB goes down with injury a week prior to playoffs. They could not keep up with the Pats in Mexico, and have only beaten one team with a .500 record or more this season (Kansas City).
- Los Angeles Chargers (Last Week: N/A)
Despite starting the season 0-4, the Chargers have now won four of their last six and have another three winnable games ahead in Dallas, Cleveland and Washington. If the Chiefs keep falling and the Chargers keep winning, we may see the first team starting 0-4 to remarkably win a divisional title in the NFL’s history. When looking at overall efficiency (and my lovely DVOA stat), they’re in the middle of the pack across all thirds of the roster, which shows some promise.