NFL Week 6 Power Rankings
By Tim Dillon
What a crazy week 6! Where did your team land?
1. Atlanta Falcons (6-0) – Every week Matt Ryan continues to lead this team to wins, even after making costly mistakes. They only won this week by a field goal, but a win is a win. They have tough match-ups against the Eagles, Cowboys, and Saints after their upcoming bye week.
2. Houston Texans (5-1) – The Texans got embarrassed at home by Aaron Rodgers and company. Their running game got shut down and they showed weakness. They will have a tough game next week against the Ravens, but without Ray Lewis and Ladarius Webb it will be a little easier to establish the passing game.
3. San Francisco 49ers (4-2) – One rough loss isn’t enough to bump the 49ers from the #3 spot. Make no mistake, they are still the team to beat in the NFC West, despite the surging Seahawks.
4. Chicago Bears (4-1) – The Bears will take on the struggling Lions next Monday night. They are well rested after their bye week and should have no problem at home improving to 5-1.
5. New York Giants (4-2) – Everyone expected their game against the Niners to go exactly how it went last year in the playoffs. Instead, the Giants defense stepped up and shut down the newly matured Alex Smith. This is a tough team to beat.
6. Baltimore Ravens (5-1) – The Ravens may have won this past week because of the Cowboys’ inability to close out games, but they are going to have a rough road ahead after losing Ray Lewis and Ladarius Webb for the season. The resiliency of their team will be tested.
7. Seattle Seahawks (4-2) – Props to Russell Wilson; he led an unbelievable comeback against the Patriots this past Sunday. He exploited their weak secondary and the Seattle D completely shut down Tom Brady in the second half of the game, after shutting down the Pats run game the entire game. This team is legit.
8. Minnesota Vikings (4-2) – Despite the losing the game and throwing 2 picks, Ponder had a great game going 35/52 with 352 yards and 2 TDs. TE Kyle Rudolph is emerging as a go-to target for Ponder, and is worth a look in your fantasy league.
9. New England Patriots (3-3) – This team showed a lot of flaws in their horrible loss to the Seahawks, but they are better than a lot of the many other 3-3 teams. Tom Brady had a great game until the intentional grounding call to end the first half, and then it all went downhill, with the defensive secondary failing to keep them in the game.
10. Arizona Cardinals (4-2) – The Cards have lost two straight and haven’t looked good doing so. They face the Vikings next week who could drop them to losing three straight. As far as I’m concerned, the fate of this team largely rests on next week’s game.
11. Green Bay Packers (3-3) – One stellar game from Rodgers isn’t enough to bump this team up significantly. While their defense managed to shut down the Texans, this is the first time all season they looked like a competent group. If it continues, this team will be a legit contender again.
12. Denver Broncos (3-3) – Bouncing back to win after being in a 24 point hole is very impressive. Manning and the Broncos proved they were tough and could fight hard for a win. My only concern is that the win seemed to be handed to them by Phil Rivers with his 4 INTs and 2 fumbles…
13. Cincinnati Bengals (3-3) – Despite losing to the Browns, QB Andy Dalton threw for 381 yards and 3 TDs. He hasn’t fallen to a sophomore slump but the team needs to improve, particularly with their rough stretch ahead, facing the Steelers, Broncos, and Giants.
14. Washington Redskins (3-3) – The ‘Skins beat the surprising Vikings last weekend and showed America that they are actually a contender in the tight NFC East. Only one game behind the Giants, who will host the ‘Skins this coming Sunday. It should be an intense game!
15. Miami Dolphins (3-3) – It may not be pretty, but the Dolphins are pulling out wins with Tannehill at QB. He is turning into a franchise quarterback and the defense is developing slowly. In a 4-way tie in the AFC East, their game against the Jets after their upcoming bye week is a must-win.
16. Philadelphia Eagles (3-3) – The Eagles are such a sloppy team I couldn’t decide on where to rank them. Look at the teams below and I had almost no choice but to put them up this high. They have dropped two straight and will have a tough game against the undefeated Falcons after their bye week.
17. Pittsburgh Steelers (2-3) – The Steelers should not have lost that game against the Titans on Thursday night. It’s hard to believe Brian Billick had them power ranked at #10 last week. They are an undisciplined team and Polamalu staying on the sidelines doesn’t help.
18. San Diego Chargers (3-3) – The Chargers blew a 24 point lead with Phil Rivers throwing 4 picks and fumbling twice. That’s inexcusable, especially at home in a big divisional game. Norv Turner, start updating your resume.
19. New York Jets (3-3) – The Jets looked great in their win over the Colts on Sunday when they reverted to their ground & pound style. The only drawback is that the team they beat has a coach in the hospital and an abysmal defense. They will have a chance at taking 1st place in the AFC East with a win against the Patriots this coming Sunday.
20. St. Louis Rams (3-3) – They lost an ugly game to the Dolphins this past week. To make matters worse they have an incredibly rough road ahead with the Packers, Patriots, and 49ers.
21. Buffalo Bills (3-3) – The Bills escaped this week with a win, but they are going to struggle down the road. They re-signed DE Shawne Merriman to help their defense, which has been a huge disappointment this year.
22. Dallas Cowboys (2-3) – The Cowboys had so many opportunities to beat the Ravens last weekend but failed to capitalize each time. They are beating themselves each week.
23. Detroit Lions (2-3) – Matt Stafford and the Lions faced a must-win game this past weekend and pulled out an ugly win. They need to turn that win into momentum in order to turn their season around.
24. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (2-3) – Josh Freeman played really well this weekend, but then again it was against the lowly Chiefs. The upcoming Saints’ defense isn’t a threat but their offense is.
25. New Orleans Saints (1-4) – The Saints were on a bye this week so there’s no reason they fell a spot in my rankings. Jonathan Vilma could return this weekend for their game against the Buccs, which could revitalize their defense.
26. Tennessee Titans (2-4) – I admire the way the Titans were able to pull out a win last Thursday against the Steelers. Matt Hasselbeck’s occasional disconnect with the receivers was obvious as he wasn’t taking first team reps in practice until now. Even so, Chris Johnson is just not very good anymore.
27. Carolina Panthers (1-4) – The Panthers are having an awful season so far but have a chance at a win this coming weekend when they take on the Cowboys. Losing star C Ryan Kalil was a huge moral loss for the team.
28. Indianapolis Colts (2-3) – The Colts got embarrassed by the Jets in NY, but they are allowed to have these games as a team that’s clearly rebuilding.
29. Kansas City Chiefs (1-5) – Brady Quinn didn’t quite start his Kansas City career on a good note. While the commentators were very critical of him, he wasn’t completely horrible. He needs to develop a connection with Dwayne Bowe if he wants a chance of winning.
30. Oakland Raiders (1-4) – The Raiders were so close to handing the Falcons their first loss of the season…but they’re the Raiders, so of course they didn’t. This team is not good, despite Palmer’s 353 yard game and McFadden’s increased play.
31. Cleveland Browns (1-5) – The Browns won! Congratulations Cleveland. Brandon Weeden had a good game going 17/29 for 231 yards and 2 TDs. Hopefully RB Trent Richardson’s injury isn’t too severe.
32. Jacksonville Jaguars (1-4) – The Jags may not have played this week but that doesn’t stop them from falling to last in my rankings. So much for Justin Blackmon being a valuable weapon for Gabbert…