After 5 weeks into the 2013 NFL season, only three teams are left standing without a loss to their name, having enough luck and obviously ability to be this good thus far. The Denver Broncos and the Kansas City Chiefs in the AFC West, and the New Orleans Saints from the NFC South are the remaining three, leaving the New England Patriots and the Seattle Seahawks behind after those two lost for the first time this season.
It’s not so surprising to see the Broncos doing well early in the season after going 13-3 last year. Peyton Manning seems to be as every bit as good as he was before the injury that got him kicked out of Indianapolis, with a strong offensive line and a receiving crew that no other team in the league can match.
It’s a bit more surprising to see the Saints and especially the Chiefs doing so well, considering how bad the Chiefs were last season (2-14) while the Saints produced the worst defense, statistically speaking, last year.
It’s hard to imagine anyone going undefeated in the NFL all the way through, but right now, it’s hard seeing how the Broncos can get beat, even if their schedule hasn’t been the hardest possible. In fact, their strength of schedule might be the easiest in the league thanks to the NFC East and AFC South pairing they got this year. The Broncos are leading the NFL with 489.8 yards per game, including 373.8 passing yards each game. They are scoring 46 points a contest, including over 52 twice in a row, including their 51-48 win over the Dallas Cowboys.
The Saints are pretty close on the scale in terms of offense with 405 yards per game, but it’s their defense that’s causing most of the awe. The Saints changed their scheme to a 3-4 defense, bringing in Rob Ryan, another person with something to prove. The result? They’re 13th in the NFL in total defense, allowing 330.4 yards per game, while giving up only 14.6 points a contest, 4th best in the NFL.
The hardest team to score against in the league? The Kansas City Chiefs. It might have to do with a very patient and slow offense, even if Andy Reid is giving Alex Smith too many throws, completing only 58.4% of his passes and throwing three interceptions over the last two games. They’re allowing only 11.6 points per game, best in the NFL, and are 7th in the NFL by allowing 312.8 yards against them each game.
As for the Losers
The bluff couldn’t carry on for much longer. Aside for his performance against the Atlanta Falcons, Tom Brady has been awful, with or without his best receivers. He’s only 27th in the NFL in completion percentage with 56.6%, and is 31st in yards per attempt, averaging 6.18. His passer rating of 80.5 is ranked 22nd. The 13-6 loss to the Bengals came later than is should, showing that they had an easy schedule and maybe a lucky break here and there.
The Seattle Seahawks loss came as a slight surprise, but it only goes to show just how strong the Colts are at the moment, and that they’re very close to being perfect if it wasn’t for that letdown against Miami. They beat the Seahawks 34-28, making Russell Wilson look very bad (15-of-31), forcing him to two turnovers.