NFL Power Rankings Week 5: Division Standings and Latest 2018 Super Bowl Odds

Chris Roling@@Chris_RolingFeatured ColumnistOctober 2, 2017

FOXBORO, MA - OCTOBER 01:  Tom Brady #12 of the New England Patriots looks to pass during the second half against the Carolina Panthers at Gillette Stadium on October 1, 2017 in Foxboro, Massachusetts.  (Photo by Maddie Meyer/Getty Images)
Maddie Meyer/Getty Images

It doesn't get much stranger than the start to the 2017 NFL season.  

Granted, most likely think so every year. But we're in a timeline where the New England Patriots sit at 2-2—the same record as the New York Jets.  

In the aftermath of Week 4, we're also talking about teams like the Atlanta Falcons, Dallas Cowboys and Oakland Raiders going down. Put another way: The Jacksonville Jaguars are 2-2 and in the running in the AFC South. 

The silver lining? Oddsmakers have to keep up with this by adjusting long-term lines, which would-be bettors can exploit in a big way as the NFL tries to sort itself out. Here's a look at updated power rankings, Super Bowl odds and a few words of advice on notable lines.

            

2017 NFL Power Rankings and Super Bowl Odds

RankTeam
1Kansas City Chiefs (12-1)
2Denver Broncos (25-1)
3Green Bay Packers (15-2)
4Oakland Raiders (12-1)
5Buffalo Bills (100-1)
6Detroit Lions (33-1)
7Atlanta Falcons (15-2)
8New England Patriots (7-2)
9Seattle Seahawks (12-1)
10Philadelphia Eagles (33-1)
11Tampa Bay Buccaneers (33-1)
12Los Angeles Rams (75-1)
13Carolina Panthers (33-1)
14Washington Redskins (50-1)
15Dallas Cowboys (12-1)
16Pittsburgh Steelers (12-1)
17Houston Texans (50-1)
18Tennessee Titans (22-1)
19New Orleans Saints (66-1)
20New York Jets (500-1)
21Minnesota Vikings (33-1)
22Arizona Cardinals (66-1)
23Cincinnati Bengals (200-1)
24Jacksonville Jaguars (75-1)
25New York Giants (66-1)
26Los Angeles Chargers (150-1)
27Baltimore Ravens (50-1)
28Miami Dolphins (100-1)
29Chicago Bears (500-1)
30Indianapolis Colts (100-1)
31Cleveland Browns (1000-1)
32San Francisco 49ers (1000-1)
author's opinion, odds via OddsShark

          

Division Standings

AFC East

  • Buffalo 3-1
  • N.Y. Jets 2-2
  • New England 2-2
  • Miami 1-2

    

AFC North

  • Pittsburgh 3-1
  • Baltimore 2-2
  • Cincinnati 1-3
  • Cleveland 0-4

     

AFC South

  • Tennessee 2-2
  • Jacksonville 2-2
  • Houston 2-2
  • Indianapolis 1-3

    

AFC West

  • Kansas City 3-0
  • Denver 3-1
  • Oakland 2-2
  • L.A. Chargers 0-4

    

NFC East

  • Philadelphia 3-1
  • Washington 2-1
  • Dallas 2-2
  • N.Y. Giants 0-4

     

NFC North

  • Detroit 3-1
  • Green Bay 3-1
  • Minnesota 2-2
  • Chicago 1-3

     

NFC South

  • Atlanta 3-1
  • Carolina 3-1
  • Tampa Bay 2-1
  • New Orleans 2-2

     

NFC West

  • L.A. Rams 3-1
  • Arizona 2-2
  • Seattle 2-2
  • San Francisco 0-4

      

Don't Panic: New England Patriots (7-2)

Don't give up on those Patriots.  

Yes, it's odd Tom Brady and what should be a contending team has a 1-2 mark at home right now. But playing host to the elite Kansas City Chiefs and Cam Newton's Carolina Panthers while trying to figure things out on the defensive side of the ball will do that to almost any team. 

Brady certainly isn't the problem, not when he's sitting on 10 touchdowns with zero interceptions. It's the defense collapsing and surrendering four touchdowns to Newton in a 33-30 loss. 

Mark Daniels of the Providence Journal provided some staggering context: 

Still, things figure to even out. It sounds cliche to blindly throw trust behind Bill Belichick, but it has certainly been a viable strategy in the past. And the schedule evens out over the course of the season, especially thanks to an AFC East featuring struggling teams in the Jets and Miami Dolphins. Given the wealth of injuries, a 3-1 Buffalo Bills team might come back down to earth sooner as opposed to later. 

More important than anything else? Brady. Offensive alterations can mask poor defenses and nothing is more important in the NFL than the man under center. Until the Patriots are eliminated from the playoffs, nobody should pass up the Patriots. 

          

Abandon Ship: New York Giants (66-1)

TAMPA, FL - OCTOBER 1:  Quarterback Eli Manning #10 of the New York Giants warms up before the start of an NFL football game against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on October 1, 2017 at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa, Florida. (Photo by Brian Blanco/Getty Image
Brian Blanco/Getty Images

It's over for the New York Giants.  

Yes, this is a comment that has been leveled at the Giants in the past and they have pulled off miracles. But these aren't the Giants of old—these are the 0-4 Giants. The Giants that scored only 13 points through their first two games, then came up short in two road contests by five points. 

Eli Manning (six touchdowns, four interceptions) doesn't have a running game behind him, nor does the 36-year-old look like the quarterback to push an average team over the top anymore. He did, however, help out the team's running game stats here: 

Not only are the Giants mathematically eliminated in spirit, the schedule doesn't get any easier. They have to deal with the Denver Broncos and Seattle Seahawks over the course of the next three weeks, with the Chiefs and Raiders left to play. 

Did anyone mention tough NFC East matchups? 

These Giants aren't the Giants that bettors might roll the dice on back in the day. 

              

Time to Invest: Denver Broncos (25-1)

DENVER, CO - OCTOBER 01:  C.J. Anderson #22 of the Denver Broncos tries to break free from Nicholas Morrow #50 of the Oakland Raiders at Sports Authority Field at Mile High on October 1, 2017 in Denver, Colorado.  (Photo by Matthew Stockman/Getty Images)
Matthew Stockman/Getty Images

Those who shied away from the Broncos to start the season weren't in the wrong. 

But they will be if they don't loop back to them. 

Skepticism about the Broncos made sense. Trevor Siemian entered the season as the starter and the running game was unknown. An elite defense didn't seem enough to roll with the team, given the dominance of the Chiefs. 

But now these Broncos are 3-1 with two wins in the AFC West already and a knee-slapper of a supposedly tough encounter in a 42-17 shellacking of the Cowboys. More recently, Siemian and the defense took down the Oakland Raiders, 16-10. 

Quarterbacks are important, but so is confidence from a downright amazing unit. 

"We're gonna shut down everybody we play, I promise you," linebacker Brandon Marshall said, according to NFL.com's Michael Silver. "We just have a different tenacity about us this year, a different mindset. A lot of guys came back stronger and more focused. We're just more aggressive, more confident."

Denver has allowed north of 20 points twice so far and is absolutely shutting down opposing runners. Melvin Gordon ran for 54 yards against the unit on 18 attempts. Ezekiel Elliott, eight on nine. LeSean McCoy, 21 on 14. Marshawn Lynch, 12 on nine. 

With the defense playing like it is and the offense looking respectable, it's time to throw weight behind the Broncos as contenders given the strong payout here. 

              

Stats courtesy of NFL.com. Odds courtesy of OddsShark

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