Carolina Panthers

We’re down to four undefeated teams, which make up the top 4 of the NFL’s power rankings following week 8: The New England Patriots are still the best, trailed by the Cincinnati Bengals, Denver Broncos and Carolina Panthers. The worst? The Detroit Lions have the worst record, but no one is as bad as the Tennessee Titans this season.

1. New England Patriots, 7-0: The Patriots have won seven games while averaging 35.3 points. Only two other teams have done that through the first 7 games of the season.

2. Cincinnati Bengals, 7-0: Despite the close game against the Steelers, it was the Bengals best defensive performance, allowing only 10 points, of the season.

3. Denver Broncos, 7-0: After their best offensive performance of the season, adding Vernon Davis isn’t going to do any harm.

4. Carolina Panthers, 7-0: Cam Newton once again turning things around at halftime and starting to hit the big, long throws made a big difference for the Panthers.

5. Arizona Cardinals, 6-2: Despite two fumbles, Chris Johnson is having an excellent comeback season, racking up for 100-yard games so far.

6. Green Bay Packers, 6-1: Rodgers throwing for just 77 yards drops them to 27th this season in passing yards with just 210.1.

7. Minnesota Vikings, 5-2: Quietly, the Vikings have the second best defense in the NFL, allowing only 17.4 points per game.

8. Atlanta Falcons, 6-2: At some point, the Matt Ryan – Julio Jones connection can’t make up for all of the other team flaws.

9. St. Louis Rams, 4-3: The Todd Gurley train isn’t stopping, rushing for 575 yards through four games.

10. Seattle Seahawks, 4-4: There was nothing impressive about their win over the Dallas Cowboys, having more to do with the weakness of their opponent than their own play, which was once again, disappointing.

11. Oakland Raiders, 4-3: It’s been a very long time since Oakland were the best team in the Bay Area.

12. New York Jets, 4-3: If anybody missed Geno Smith and wondered what he was doing, his performance against the Raiders was a reminder why he isn’t the starter, and it has nothing to do with his injury.

13. New Orleans Saints, 4-4: Drew Brees keeps putting up incredible numbers, but Rob Ryan continues to show how incompetent he is as a defensive coordinator.

14. Philadelphia Eagles, 3-4: The Eagles have some avenging to do against the Dallas Cowboys, hoping they’re not the ones who end the losing streak.

15. New York Giants, 4-4: A very good Eli Manning season might go to waste if the defense keeps playing like it did against the Saints, allowing 52 points and at-will scoring.

16. Miami Dolphins, 3-4: There’s nothing better as a reality dose than playing the New England Patriots, making the Dolphins realize that Dan Campbell isn’t a magician.

17. Tampa Bay Buccaneers, 3-4: Doug Martin is having a great season, helping the Bucs rank 4th in rushing yards with 131.3.

18. Buffalo Bills, 3-4: The Bills keep busy off the field with Kyle Williams out for two weeks, players unhappy about Ryan’s defensive alignments and Percy Harvin wobbling between the team and retirement.

19. Kansas City Chiefs, 3-5: With a running game, the Chiefs have enough defense to make it through some games and end up on top, especially if it’s against the Lions.

20. Pittsburgh Steelers, 4-4: Dropped to here because without Le’Veon Bell, it’s hard seeing them make it out of the AFC.

21. Washington Redskins, 3-4: Kirk Cousins did an AMA this week. While he didn’t show it, he’s probably afraid of the Patriots too.

22. Chicago Bears, 2-5: Lose two division games by three points two weeks in a row, and yet things could be worse.

23. Indianapolis Colts, 3-5: Nice comeback, but not enough. As long as Andrew Luck is playing injured, even the top spot in the AFC South isn’t safe.

24. Houston Texans, 3-5: From time to time, the Texans are going to run into dysfunctional teams and beat them. That’s not going to happen a lot, but it might actually help them win the division.

25. Baltimore Ravens, 2-6: Despite a bad defense and a weird season for Joe Flacco, it doesn’t make sense that the Ravens keep losing the close games. Having Justin Tucker helps.

26. Dallas Cowboys, 2-5: A good defense and Dez Bryant on the field aren’t enough when Matt Cassel actually runs better than he throws.

27. San Diego Chargers, 2-6: Philip Rivers might be putting up big numbers, but he has no offensive line, and is now without his best receiver for an unknown amount of time.

28. Jacksonville Jaguars, 2-5: Despite an awful season, there’s actually a thought process that includes making the playoff for the Jags. Things are that bad in this division.

29. Cleveland Browns, 2-6: Johnny Manziel, Josh McCown, it doesn’t matter. The Browns are bad, but their good players aren’t willing to ditch the team, each for his own reason.

30. San Francisco 49ers, 2-6: Things have gotten so bad that Colin Kaepernick is now getting benched for Blaine Gabbert.

31. Detroit Lions, 1-7: Losing to the Chiefs is a new low in this awful, awful season, with both lines decimated by bad coaching and management decisions.

32. Tennessee Titans, 1-6: Six losses in a row, and Ken Whisenhunt falls to 1-20  when he doesn’t have a whole preseason to prepare for a game.

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