Another week, another round of games that further demonstrated that parity is just a term for “a whole lot of lousy teams.”
1 New England Patriots (last week: 1)
Different game, same story: the Patriots were #1 last week and posted a 27-0 thrashing of the Texans.
2 Denver Broncos (last week: 4)
Not even Trevor Siemian saw Trevor Siemian throwing four touchdowns against the Bengals but here were are.
3 Minnesota Vikings (last week: 7)
Considering they were missing Adrian Pederson, the Vikings win at the Panthers was as impressive as any on Sunday: they scored four different ways including defense and special teams, and shutout the Panthers for the final three quarters, and did so on the road. That’s the performance of a Super Bowl contender.
4 Kansas City Chiefs (last week: 11)
The only bad thing you can say about the Chiefs throttling of the Jets is that picking off Ryan Fitzpatrick six times but only returning one of them for a touchdown seems like a low ratio.
5 Seattle Seahawks (last week: 8)
Last week we said the Seahawks lost to the Rams to fulfill a deal with the Devil, and they proved it by thumping the team that thumped the Rams.
6 Green Bay Packers (last week: 9)
The Pack are back, or more accurately, Aaron Rodgers is. Fresh off a good locker room rant about his critics he returned with a vengeance, throwing four touchdowns in the first half against the Lions. That’ll calm the flames for this week.
7 Philadelphia Eagles (last week: 12)
No more “yeah but” for the Eagles. They flat out embarrassed one of the best teams in the league on a short week.
8 Baltimore Ravens (last week: 15)
Last week we said this team was a paper tiger, and beating the Jaguars by 2 points doesn’t change that.
9 Pittsburgh Steelers (last week: 2)
The Steelers might end the season as a better team than the Eagles but they lost badly to them on Sunday, so they go below them because that’s the way power rankings work.
10 Carolina Panthers (last week: 3)
It was logical to assume that the Panthers defense would struggle without Josh Norman, but they’ve been fine. The offense struggling despite the return of Kelvin Benjamin is seemingly puzzling. Maybe they’re just better off without him.
11 Arizona Cardinals (last week: 5)
The Cardinals should be one of the best teams in the league. Instead they’re losing to the Patriots B team and a Bills franchise that is falling apart at the seams. There’s still time to turn it around but they look like frauds this year.
12 Houston Texans (last week: 6)
Speaking of frauds, the Texans were supposed to be improved on offense with the additions of Brock Osweiler, Lamar Miller and Will Fuller, instead they are the 2nd worst scoring team.
13 Oakland Raiders (last week: 17)
The Raiders have beaten the Saints and Titans and lost to the Falcons for a total point differential of +1, which seems like the mark of a perfectly average team, or in this season a good one.
14 New York Jets (last week: 10)
Ryan Fitzpatrick has always been turnover prone, which is a big reason why the Jets had only three games last year where they didn’t turn the ball over, but damn 8 in one game?
15 Atlanta Falcons (last week: 21)
Congratulations, you beat the Saints. Have a cookie.
16 Cincinnati Bengals (last week: 13)
There’s no shame in losing to the Broncos, but giving up 4 touchdowns to Trevor Siemian is just embarrassing.
17 Indianapolis Colts (last week: 19)
Beating the Chargers is something.... well it’s a win. That’s enough.
18 New York Giants (last week: 14)
The Giants could have put the nail in the Redskins coffin, instead they blew a 21-9 lead to a team that can’t get along with themselves.
19 Dallas Cowboys (last week: 24)
Yeah but it was the Bears.
20 Los Angeles Rams (last week: 25)
At 2-1 Jeff Fisher is off to his best start with the Rams so it looks like they’re not going fucking 7-9 but rather 8-8.
21 Washington Redskins (last week: 28)
It took 28 starts but Kirk Cousins finally beat a team with a winning record. Barely. To a team that probably won’t finish with a winning record.
22 Buffalo Bills (last week: 31)
Maybe Rex Ryan knows what he’s doing. Probably not.
23 Miami Dolphins (last week: 22)
No style points for needing OT to beat the Browns. If anything, that deducts them.
24 San Diego Chargers (last week: 16)
3rd in scoring and a deserved 1-2 record. The Chargers are the middle class man’s Saints.
25 Detroit Lions (last week: 18)
Their 34-27 loss to the Packers wasn’t nearly as close as the score indicates. By the time the 1st quarter was over, the Packers had the game in hand, and at 31-3 with a minute to go in the 2nd, it was out of hand.
26 Tampa Bay Buccaneers (last week: 20)
Dirk Koetter, who was criticized for poor game management when he was head coach at Arizona State and promoted by the Bucs in a panic move, botched the end of the game when the Bucs ran out of time but not timeouts in an attempted comeback against the Rams. Whoops.
27 New Orleans Saints (last week: 27)
The Saints defense is the grease fire we expected and next week they face the Chargers 3rd highest scoring offense followed by the bye week. Defensive coordinator Dennis Allen should update his resume.
28 Tennessee Titans (last week: 23)
The Titans are 2-16 at home since 2013. They have had more coaches than wins in that time span. Probably be that way next season too.
29 Jacksonville Jaguars (last week: 26)
Gus Bradley should pull a Rex Ryan and fire the top choice to be his interim replacement.
30 San Francisco 49ers (last week: 29)
If one play can encapsulate a team, it’s Blaine Gabbert nearly handing off to nobody.
How come nobody told me about Blaine Gabbert running an option handoff to nobody? pic.twitter.com/B7QjhRzN6G— Cian Fahey (@Cianaf) September 26, 2016
31 Chicago Bears (last week: 30)
With Jay Cutler out, Alshon Jeffery on the last year of his contract and the team not looking good with both of them playing well, the Bears should take this opportunity to just tank the season and start all over again in the winter.
32 Cleveland Browns (last week: 32)
The saddest part of this season for Browns fans is that the Browns will screw up getting the #1 pick they are tanking for.