Now that Week 1 of the 2022 NFL season is in the books, it’s time for everyone’s favorite meaningful exercise: NFL Power Rankings! What differentiates these rankings from the others is that they’re the only truly accurate ones in the entire universe. And so let’s take a look at how all 32 teams stack up ahead of Week 2.
BLG’S WEEK 2 NFL POWER RANKINGS
1 - Buffalo Bills (Last Week: 2) - Prior to Week 1, many had the Bills as their Super Bowl pick. Prior to Week 1, many had Josh Allen as their MVP pick. After Week 1, those outcomes are looking very possible, if not likely. The Bills turned the ball over four times ... and still beat the reigning Super Bowl champions in their house by 21 points. Scary team.
2 - Kansas City Chiefs (LW: 3) - Patrick Mahomes’ Week 1 stat line: 30/39 (76.9%), 360 yards (9.2 average), 5 TD, 0 INT, 144.2 passer rating. Doing just fine without Tyreek Hill thus far.
3 - Tampa Bay Buccaneers (LW: 4) - The Bucs’ offensive line looked a bit shaky in pass protection. Tampay will be aided by Tom Brady getting the ball out quick. They’ll also be helped by their ability to run the ball. Leonard Fournette logged 27 carries for 127 yards (6.0 average) on Sunday night. That was big.
4 - Los Angeles Chargers (LW: 7) - Kim Kardashian’s “He’s here and he’s perfect!” tweet is actually about Justin Herbert. No better way to start the season than by beating the team that knocked them out of a playoff spot in last year’s regular season finale. Can the Bolts beat KC to advance to 2-0? That would be huge.
5 - Los Angeles Rams (LW: 1) - The Rams are quickly taking on water. Matthew Stafford doesn’t look quite right. He’s not going to get any healthier playing behind a shoddy offensive line. If they lose to Atlanta this week, any hopes of repeating will seem far-fetched.
6 - Baltimore Ravens (LW: 9) - Lamar Jackson is betting on himself after failing to reach a contract extension before his self-imposed deadline. He’s off to a decent start, tossing three touchdowns during a comfortable win over NYJ.
7 - Miami Dolphins (LW: 10) - Dolphins -3.5 was my lock of the week on last week’s episode of The Look Ahead on The SB Nation NFL Show. Having Tyreek Hill is a game-changer for Tua Tagovailoa. Oh, and let’s not forget about Jaylen Waddle. The Dolphins are a spicy team that might be able to challenge the Bills for the AFC East crown. Key word: might. Still have some more proving to do.
8 - Minnesota Vikings (LW: 14) - They arguably walked away with the most satisfying Week 1 win. A decisive victory over the reigning NFC North champions has to have Vikings fans feeling like their ceiling is raised. There’s already some Justin Jefferson MVP hype. As there should be since he’s basically unstoppable.
9 - Green Bay Packers (LW: 5) - It’s hard to bury the Packers at this point because 1) it’s one loss and 2) it’s not the first time they’ve started a season slow. They were blown out in Week 1 in 2014 and 2021 ... and then won 12 and 13 games, respectively. Aaron Rodgers could find a way to quickly turn this thing around. It’ll be more challenging than before, however, with no obvious top wide receiver to turn to in addition to a banged up offensive line and a vulnerable defense.
10 - Philadelphia Eagles (LW: 11) - The Eagles could’ve had a much more satisfying win than they ultimately did. They should’ve been able to close it out for a blowout. But Jonathan Gannon’s leaky defense played a large role in letting the Lions make it close at the end. Detroit scored touchdowns on three of their final four drives. Jalen Hurts’ running ability played a large part in the Eagles winning, as did A.J. Brown’s pass-catching ability. That’s going to be a connection that continues to serve Philly well. The Eagles have some issues to clean up but there’s time for them to do just that. Not to mention a very easy schedule ahead of them.
11 - Pittsburgh Steelers (LW: 21) - What reason is there to doubt Mike Tomlin? He’s just not a guy you want to bet against. The Stillers consistently find a way to do more with less. Their ceiling is only so high with Mitch Trubisky but their floor is sturdy.
12 - Cincinnati Bengals (LW: 6) - So, uh ... so much for the Bengals’ offensive line being fixed? Joe Burrow was sacked seven times and hit 11 times in Week 1. He threw four picks in a slow start to the season. I would bet on him being better moving forward ... but this was a rough look for a team looking to show last year wasn’t fluky.
13 - Denver Broncos (LW: 8) - The Broncos have quietly had very bad vibes. I’m a huge Russell Wilson fan but, deep down, even I haven’t been fully believing that he would go to Denver and thrive without a hitch. Of course, Russ would be helped by his head coach would trusting him a bit more instead of opting to kick a 64-yard field goal.
14 - Las Vegas Raiders (LW: 15) - The Raiders are a quality team that just happens to play in the toughest division in the NFL. Perhaps the toughest division we’ve seen in years?
15 - Washington Commanders (LW: 22) - The full Carson Wentz experience was on display in Week 1. He made some high level throws. He committed some terrible turnovers that allowed Jacksonville to nearly stage a comeback. The good and bad is probably going to even out to where Washington settles in as a middling team.
16 - New Orleans Saints (LW: 19) - Look, I don’t feel good about moving this team up three spots. But that’s just how the order shook out with teams around them. The Saints needed a 16-point fourth quarter comeback against a team that’s elite at choking to win. Credit to them for pulling it off ... but it’s still hard to see how this team is getting hype as championship contenders.
17 - San Francisco 49ers (LW: 15) - Trey Lance isn’t good. Might he be eventually? Maybe. Not feeling super optimistic about it ... but maybe. For the time being, it’s clear he’s not good right now. No quarterback had a worse completion percentage above expected in Week 1. Lance completed 46.4% of his passes when he reasonably should’ve been at 67.5% according to NFL Next Gen Stats.
18 - Dallas Cowboys (LW: 12) - There’s a strong case to put the Cowboys even lower. My NFC East Mixtape co-host, RJ Ochoa from Blogging The Boys, placed Dallas DEAD LAST at No. 32 overall in his own NFL power rankings. It’s really tough to see Cowboys fans in shambles (nah, not really). They had the worst Week 1 of any team. Dak Prescott looked awful before he got hurt. The Cowboys’ second option at left guard got banged up. Starting safety Jayron Kearse is going to miss time. Jerry Jones seems to believe Prescott will return earlier than expected. But if you assume the 6-8 timeline is more accurate than what Jerry had to say ... what’s the Cowboys’ record when Dak comes back?
19 - Detroit Lions (LW: 23) - The Lions still lack top end talent but they’re still very frisky. That being said, Dan Campbell has to find a way to put more wins on the board. Beating Washington at home this week would be a good start on that front.
20 - Cleveland Browns (LW: 24) - Cleveland’s run game is going to have to do the heavy lifting because Jacoby Brissett certainly can’t. The Browns can beat bad teams, like Carolina, with this approach. They won’t be able to hang with the good teams, though.
21 - Indianapolis Colts (LW: 16) - Going from Carson Wentz to Matt Ryan did wonders for Indy. Except ... no, it didn’t. Tying Houston is essentially a loss for them. And yet the Colts still have a good chance to win a very bad division.
22 - New York Giants (LW: 25) - Calling my shot: The 2022 Giants are the 2021 Lions. They’re a flawed team that’s going to play above their heads and give opponents trouble more often than not. They’ll have a higher ceiling than Detroit’s squad from last season if Saquon Barkley is truly back in top form. Not TOO much higher but enough to be a merely below average team instead of one of the league’s very worst teams.
23 - Tennessee Titans (LW: 20) - No team had a bigger stock down offseason than the Titans. And the bad vibes carried over into Week 1. It’s almost like they shouldn’t have traded A.J. Brown?
24 - New England Patriots (LW: 17) - Wait, you’re telling me an offense coordinated by Matt Patricia and Joe Judge might not be a very good one? Only seven points in Week 1? Shocking!
25 - Arizona Cardinals (LW: 18) - The Cardinals have been pretty hopeless without DeAndre Hopkins. The bad news for them is he’s still out for a bit. What happens if the Cards, a team that never finishes strong, can’t get off to a good start? Does anyone end up having faith in them turning it around?
26 - Houston Texans (LW: 28) - Davis Mills is an NFL quarterback. A great one? Probably not. But he’s a legitimate option under center. Not every team can say they have a guy like that.
27 - Chicago Bears (LW: 29) - No one really gave Chicago a chance to beat San Francisco but they pulled it off. Of course, it helped that the Bears played a team with a QB worse than Justin Fields.
28 - Seattle Seahawks (LW: 32) - Geno Smith had the best quote from Week 1. “They wrote me off, I ain’t write back though.” Kudos to him for leading Seattle to an upset. Hard to see the Seahawks sustaining success but they might be a little friskier than expected.
29 - Jacksonville Jaguars (LW: 26) - It’s fair to say Trevor Lawrence hasn’t shown the kind of promise you’d like to see from him thus far in his career, right? Not all his fault by any means. And, yes, it’s one game in 2022. Still, need to see more. Can Doug Pederson bring the best out of him? While major questions remain for the Jags, at least Travon Walker showed promise in their loss.
30 - Atlanta Falcons (LW: 30) - Different coach, different quarterback, different general manager ... somehow it doesn’t matter. No team chokes harder than the Falcons do. If Arthur Smith didn’t exude signs of BLE, there might be some hope in them turning it around. Probably not gonna happen, though.
31 - New York Jets (LW: 27) - The worst team in the NFL since 2017 isn’t looking like they’re ready to turn things around.
32 - Carolina Panthers (LW: 31) - Anyone out there thinking that Matt Rhule, Ben McAdoo, and Baker Mayfield will find a way to thrive? Does anyone really believe that? The Panthers are doomed.