The Denver Broncos, after beating the San Francisco 49ers, seem to be in a class of their own right now, leading the NFL power rankings after week 7, followed closely by a red hot Dallas Cowboys and Indianapolis Colts. Down near the bottom, the Oakland Raiders grab a sole hold of the last spot thanks to being the only win-less team in the league.
1. Denver Broncos (5-1): If the Broncos once again finish the season at number one in the AFC, it won’t be because Peyton Manning is so good, but because of the defensive changes during the offseason.
2. Dallas Cowboys (6-1): It’s hard to believe, but the Dallas Cowboys are still high up the power rankings following another mostly dominant win over the New York Giants, while DeMarco Murray and the run-first approach aren’t slowing down.
3. Indianapolis Colts (5-2): Five consecutive wins for the Colts, the second hottest team in the league, who are finally going through Andrew Luck’s arm as the first offensive option.
4. Green Bay Packers (5-2): If there’s one quarterback in the NFL who actually makes art masterpieces on his best days, it has to be Rodgers.
5. San Diego Chargers (5-2): Philip Rivers had his second so-so game of the season, which made the whole difference in their first loss since week 1.
6. Baltimore Ravens (5-2): Defense is a wonderful thing to have, and it can even make up for three turnovers, still managing to hold the Falcons to just 7 points.
7. Philadelphia Eagles (5-1): Got a bye week to try and work out their offensive problems.
8. Arizona Cardinals (5-1): Wins over the Raiders don’t help you boost your ranking situation.
9. Seattle Seahawks (3-3): Bad offensive line, not spreading running and throwing like it should be and a defense that’s not as good as advertised anymore have caused this early season slump.
10. New England Patriots (5-2): Playing at home they’re perfect, and when Tom Brady gets time to throw, it’s very difficult to beat them.
11. San Francisco 49ers (4-3): Not built to beat teams like the Broncos on the road with this offensive line and so many key defensive players missing.
12. Detroit Lions (5-2): The fact that the Lions keep on winning without Calvin Johnson tells us this might be a serious threat.
13. Cincinnati Bengals (3-2-1): Three consecutive games without a win, as a usually productive and efficient offense ran into a brick wall.
14. Pittsburgh Steelers (4-3): When they’ll finally win two games in a row, we’ll think about bumping them up.
15. Carolina Panthers (3-3-1): Without the defense the Panthers had last season, even a 150% healthy Cam Newton won’t be able to help them make the playoffs. Lucky for them, their division is terrible.
16. Kansas City Chiefs (3-3): It’s almost impossible to beat an Andy Reid team following a bye week, now 14-2 in his career after rest.
17. Buffalo Bills (4-3): Kyle Orton has been around for years, but he has never looked as confident as he has been for the Bills.
18. New York Giants (3-4): Two consecutive losses to division rivals, and the job Eli Manning has to do in order to get this team back in a better playoff position is becoming harder and harder.
19. Houston Texans (3-4): With Ryan Fitzpatrick as their quarterback, not a lot is going to come out of this season.
20. Cleveland Browns (3-3): The moment Brian Hoyer started talking about not staying, a humiliating loss with only six points had to come by.
21. Miami Dolphins (3-3): Another one of those teams it’s impossible to understand. Ryan Tannehill had his best ever game in the win over the Bears.
22. Chicago Bears (3-4): They’ve been in this situation before, but it’s never felt as bad and doom’ish as it does now.
23. New Orleans Saints (2-4): Drew Brees is finally getting old, and his offensive line isn’t helping. Nor is his defense.
24. St. Louis Rams (2-4): Sometimes, in some wins, you can actually see the fingerprints of a head coach all over the place.
25. Washington Redskins (2-5): A new “savior” has come: Colt McCoy. Is the Kirk Cousins era already over?
26. Atlanta Falcons (2-5): At 0-4 away from home, maybe they should ask the NFL for a special handicap when it comes to playing away from home. They’re not alone in this when it comes to the NFC South.
27. Tennessee Titans (2-5): Staying close and losing by just two points in a road game is probably the most you can ask of the Titans these days.
28. Minnesota Vikings (2-5): The running game without Adrian Peterson is working fine, but Teddy Bridgewater is a long way from being a trustworthy quarterback.
29. New York Jets (1-6): One of their better games this season still ended up with a 25-27 loss to the Patriots. Maybe Percy Harvin can help them make this season a little less miserable.
30. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (1-5): Got a week of rest, but even a month won’t be enough time to fix all the issues with this team.
31. Jacksonville Jaguars (1-6): At least this won’t be a win-less season. Blake Bortles and Denard Robinson made everyone a bit more optimistic about the future.
32. Oakland Raiders (0-6): Continue to walk the fine line between completely pathetic and just sad.