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NFL Power Rankings: How Week 1 Results Shake Up Outlook of League

LANDOVER, MD - SEPTEMBER 09: Running back LeSean McCoy #25 of the Philadelphia Eagles rushes for a touchdown against the Washington Redskins in the third quarter at FedExField on September 9, 2013 in Landover, Maryland. The Philadelphia Eagles won, 33-27. (Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images)
Patrick Smith/Getty Images
Rob GoldbergFeatured ColumnistSeptember 10, 2013

Everyone has their projections before the NFL season starts, but they mean nothing once Week 1 begins. Only after each team has played do we know how good or bad it is.

Obviously, one game will not decide the year, which is why we have 16 more weeks of regular-season action to look forward to. There are many Week 1 winners that will remain ranked below losing teams after the first week.

Still, a lot of squads showed what they are really made of during the opening week. These are the teams that will have the biggest move in the power rankings after one game.

 

Pittsburgh Steelers: Down

Like most people, NFL coaches do not want to admit a mistake. However, Mike Tomlin had to do that where Jonathan Dwyer is concerned. According to Ed Bouchette of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, the team is set to re-sign the running back after releasing him a week earlier:

Dwyer will try to help a rushing attack that averaged only 2.1 yards per carry against the Tennessee Titans.

Unfortunately, the problems stem from the offensive line, which will only get worse with Maurkice Pouncey likely out for the year.

This also hurt the passing game, as Ben Roethlisberger was sacked five times and could not get much going.

Tennessee does not have this good of a defense, which shows that Pittsburgh could be in for a long year offensively.

 

Philadelphia Eagles: Up

No one knew what to expect out of the Philadelphia Eagles this season. While many teams had new coaches, only Chip Kelly brought with him an exciting offensive attack from the college ranks.

Things worked incredibly well early on, as the team was able to build up a 33-7 advantage over the Washington Redskins on Monday night. While the lead was eventually cut to 33-27, the Eagles held on thanks to 263 rushing yards.

Obviously, there are still plenty of question marks about the defense, which will cause them to lose many games regardless of how many points the offense is able to score.

However, the biggest mystery has been solved with Kelly's new offense and the Eagles proved they are much better than anticipated coming into the season.

 

Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Down

Some will argue that the New York Jets proved they were better than expected with an opening-week win over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. However, this game instead showed that the Bucs are nowhere near playoff contention.

This team had high hopes entering the season, with Doug Martin carrying the offense and a remade defensive secondary.

However, Josh Freeman struggled on Sunday, completing only 15 of his 31 pass attempts.

Meanwhile, the squad was completely undisciplined, committing 13 penaltiesincluding a late hit that led to the game-winning field goal for the Jets.

In a tough division, Tampa Bay seems destined to spend another year in last place.

 

Chicago Bears: Up

Although many might not have noticed it, the matchup between the Chicago Bears and Cincinnati Bengals was one of the best of the weekend and likely featured two playoff teams.

The Bengals already had one of the top defenses in the NFL, and the offense has gotten more dynamic with the additions of Giovani Bernard and Tyler Eifert.

However, the Bears proved capable of handling their opponent on both sides of the ball. The remade offensive line held up strong throughout the game and the defense continued to show that turnovers solve all problems.

If Jay Cutler can get a chance to stay on his feet this year, Chicago could be one of the top teams in the NFC. 

 

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