What’s left to say about the Kansas City Chiefs? They’re on top of the power rankings yet again because they can’t stop winning, but you can’t shake the feeling of a bubble about to burst once they meet a team like Denver or Indianapolis later this season.
As for teams nibbling at the Chiefs, both the Seahawks and the Colts came back from huge early deficits against two of the worst teams in the NFL to come up with a dramatic win, while the New England Patriots put on their most complete offensive performance of the season at the expense of the Pittsburgh Steelers.
1. Kansas City Chiefs (9-0): Nothing flashy, nothing too impressive, but the wins keep coming, as they limited the Bills to only 210 offensive yards, forcing three turnovers, scoring two touchdowns off of them.
2. Denver Broncos (7-1): The bye week was just a week off for the best offense in the NFL, leading the NFL with 358 passing yards per game, with a touchdown pass being thrown on 8.6% of their passing attempts.
3. Seattle Seahawks (8-1): Their comeback win against the Bucs won’t win them any style points, but Russell Wilson with his throwing and running is coming up big again and again in the second half.
4. Indianapolis Colts (6-2): Just like Seattle, had plenty of problems against a bad team like Houston, but the Gary Kubiak episode put them back in the game without playing too well. The Andrew Luck – T.Y. Hilton connection looks like the next big thing for Indianapolis.
5. San Francisco 49ers (6-2): Had a week off to rest the best rushing attack in the league, averaging 153 yards per game and 4.5 yards per carry.
6. New England Patriots (6-2): Tom Brady looked in sync with his receivers for only the second time this season, throwing for 432 yards and 4 touchdown passes, with the Patriots putting on 610 yards against the Steelers defense.
7. New Orleans Saints (6-2): Felt the roughness of the New York Jets’ defense, halting their running game and making Drew Brees work hard for every yard, and thinking about starting to do more than just look for Jimmy Graham all the time.
8. Cincinnati Bengals (6-3): The Bengals have talent all across the field, but unless Andy Dalton stops playing like an inexperienced rookie, they’ll remain a team that struggles to get past the wild card round in the playoffs.
9. Carolina Panthers (5-3): Every game that goes by, the Panthers look like one of the more complete teams in the NFL. Beating the Falcons isn’t that hard these days, but the combination of a solid running game and their excellent defense has been very hard to beat this year.
10. Detroit Lions (5-3): Right now they’re the division champions based on a better win percentage against the Bears and the Packers when it comes to conference games.
11. Chicago Bears (5-3): Maybe Josh McCown is the answer they need? Hard to say, because Cutler is going to be back, probably, against Detroit. However, with Rodgers going down with a broken collarbone, it opens up the division once again for a team with a very bad defense.
12. Green Bay Packers (5-3): Expect them to start falling and fast, because Seneca Wallace isn’t going to win a lot of games.
13. Dallas Cowboys (5-4): November means the winning and clutch side of Tony Romo comes out. The question is – will it be enough to win the NFC East?
14. New York Jets (5-4): When Geno Smith doesn’t turn the ball over and doesn’t try too much, the Jets are good enough on defense to win against most teams in the NFL.
15. Tennessee Titans (4-4): Stopped the slide with a win over the poor Rams, as Chris Johnson breaks out for his first 100-yard (150, 2 TDs) game of the season.
16. San Diego Chargers (4-4): The Chargers simply can’t afford a two-interception game from Philip Rivers, especially against a bad defensive team like Washington.
17. Miami Dolphins (4-4): There are plenty of problems within this team, and it’ll probably be up to their defense to somehow put them ahead of the Jets by the end of this season, because Ryan Tannehill needs a better offensive line.
18. Arizona Cardinals (4-4): With Houston and Jacksonville coming up on the schedule, the Cards might find themselves still in playoff contention when we’re entering the final month of the season.
19. Philadelphia Eagles (4-5): Nick Foles tying NFL passing records doesn’t make the Eagles great, but it does mean that slowly, Chip Kelly is honing in on his quarterback for the future and finding out how to tweak his offensive system to fit better.
20. Cleveland Browns (4-5): Jason Campbell became the quarterback that finally beat the Baltimore Ravens, who are turning out to be one of the worst defending champions in recent years.
21. Washington Redskins (3-5): Don’t get too excited about their win against the Chargers. Robert Griffin III isn’t playing very well, and this defense isn’t going to catch lucky breaks every week.
22. Oakland Raiders (3-5): This team has two things going for it: Terrelle Pryor scrambling successfully and a defense that can hit the quarterback. When that doesn’t happen, they’re one of the worst in the league.
23. Baltimore Ravens (3-5): Going cheaper and younger wasn’t supposed to turn out that badly, but paying so much money to Joe Flacco doesn’t sound like such a great idea in hindsight.
24. Buffalo Bills (3-6): C.J. Spiller can put up all the amazing numbers he wants; the Bills’ carousel at quarterback means it’s another lost season.
25. New York Giants (2-6): Teams are suddenly afraid that the dormant Giant has been woken up, but it’s hard to put too much faith in a team that is well below the league average in every meaningful category.
26. Pittsburgh Steelers (2-6): Mike Tomlin called out some players for a blatant lack of effort, which might have been something he should have noticed earlier this season.
27. Atlanta Falcons (2-6): No confidence anymore in a team that should have been competing for the top spot in the conference according to preseason predictions, but early losses and injuries to their top two receivers ended all of that.
28. Houston Texans (2-6): Things just keep getting worse for the Texans, although Case Keenum is doing a good job instead of Matt Schaub.
29. St. Louis Rams (3-6): Without Sam Bradford, even a solid game from Clemens and Stacy isn’t going to help this team finish above fourth in their division.
30. Minnesota Vikings (1-7): Even in one of his better games, Christian Ponder turns the ball over twice, including one that resulted in a fumble recovery and touchdown.
31. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (0-8): Even a 21-0 lead before half time isn’t enough for this team to pick up a win, losing by three points or less for the fourth time this season.
32. Jacksonville Jaguars (0-8): Had a bye week from losing.