X

NFL Power Rankings Week 6: Latest 2016 Standings and Reaction for All 32 Teams

Ryan McCrystal@@ryan_mccrystalFeatured ColumnistOctober 11, 2016

MINNEAPOLIS, MN - OCTOBER 03: Sam Bradford #8 of the Minnesota Vikings looks to pass against the New York Giants during the game at U.S. Bank Stadium on October 3, 2016 in Minneapolis, Minnesota. The Vikings defeated the Giants 24-10. (Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images)
Joe Robbins/Getty Images

Another wild week of NFL football is in the books, and this one featured multiple surprising upsets.

Thanks to a few underdogs pulling off victories, we're now down to just one undefeated team—which makes things a little easier to sort out at the top of this week's power rankings.

This early in the season, win-loss records can be significantly influenced by strength of schedule, which is an issue that will sort itself out by season's end. But due to some unfairly easy and difficult schedules, the Week 6 power rankings don't necessarily match up well with records. 

There are a number of teams with losing records that should still be taken seriously, and some with winning records that might come crashing down.

Here's a look at the latest power rankings, followed by a closer look at a few top teams:

NFL Power Rankings
RankTeamW-L
1Minnesota Vikings5-0
2New England Patriots4-1
3Dallas Cowboys4-1
4Pittsburgh Steelers4-1
5Atlanta Falcons4-1
6Denver Broncos4-1
7Seattle Seahawks3-1
8Green Bay Packers3-1
9Oakland Raiders4-1
10Philadelphia Eagles3-1
11Baltimore Ravens3-2
12Kansas City Chiefs2-2
13Washington Redskins3-2
14Cincinnati Bengals2-3
15Arizona Cardinals2-3
16Buffalo Bills3-2
17Tampa Bay Buccaneers2-3
18Carolina Panthers1-4
19New York Jets1-4
20Los Angeles Rams3-2
21New York Giants2-3
22Houston Texans3-2
23Tennessee Titans2-3
24Indianapolis Colts2-3
25Detroit Lions2-3
26Jacksonville Jaguars1-3
27San Diego Chargers1-4
28New Orleans Saints1-3
29San Francisco 49ers1-4
30Chicago Bears1-4
31Miami Dolphins1-4
32Cleveland Browns0-5

     

1. Minnesota Vikings

MINNEAPOLIS, MN - SEPTEMBER 1: Head coach Mike Zimmer of the Minnesota Vikings looks on as his team warms up before the game against the Los Angeles Rams on September 1, 2016 at US Bank Stadium in Minneapolis, Minnesota. (Photo by Hannah Foslien/Getty Ima
Hannah Foslien/Getty Images

It's rare for a team's placement in a power ranking to be considered indisputable, but hopefully fans of all 32 teams can agree the Minnesota Vikings deserve the top spot.

Not only are the Vikings the only remaining undefeated team, but four of their five victories have been by a touchdown or more, including a 22-10 road win over the Carolina Panthers, the defending NFC champions.

The Vikings now enter their bye, giving head coach Mike Zimmer two weeks to get his defense prepared for the Philadelphia Eagles and rookie quarterback Carson Wentz. 

If Minnesota gets by the Eagles, the Vikings could cruise through their next three games against the Chicago Bears, Detroit Lions and Washington Redskins. Sweeping through that stretch would put the Vikings at 8-0 heading into a potentially exciting showdown with the Arizona Cardinals. 

     

3. Dallas Cowboys

It's hard to believe the Dallas Cowboys are 4-1 with a rookie quarterback-running back combo. But if there were any doubts about their staying power in the NFC, they put them to rest with a dominant victory over the Cincinnati Bengals in Week 5.

Although Elliott is a rookie, he certainly hasn't performed like one. Through Week 5, Elliott leads the NFL in rushing, and according to ESPN Stats & Info, he's off to arguably the most impressive start to a career in Cowboys history.

Ezekiel Elliott has rushed for 546 yards and 5 TD in his first 5 career games. It stacks up pretty well against other @dallascowboys greats pic.twitter.com/U2LQkz6t34

— ESPN Stats & Info (@ESPNStatsInfo) October 9, 2016

As much as Cowboys fans are enjoying the hot start, there's still a serious question looming over their heads: Will Tony Romo take over when he returns?

It would be tough to bench Dak Prescott while he's leading one of the hottest teams in the NFL. During each of the Cowboys' four victories, Prescott has posted a total quarterback rating of over 80, according to ESPN. 

After this hot start, it's hard to envision how the Cowboys offense could be more efficient under Romo. Through Week 5, 47.9 percent of the Cowboys' drives have resulted in an offensive score—the fourth-best rate in the NFL.

Based on these numbers under Prescott, if Romo does return, he'll certainly have a short leash.

      

6. Denver Broncos

DENVER, CO - OCTOBER 9:  Quarterback Paxton Lynch #12 of the Denver Broncos stiff arms linebacker A.J. Hawk #50 of the Atlanta Falcons in the first half of the game at Sports Authority Field at Mile High on October 9, 2016 in Denver, Colorado. (Photo by D
Dustin Bradford/Getty Images

Trevor Siemian probably doesn't have to worry about losing his job to Paxton Lynch anytime soon.

Sharon Katz and Jacob Nitzberg of ESPN Stats & Info identified Lynch as one of the three worst quarterbacks of the week, thanks to his 11.3 total QBR. 

One of the major flaws in Lynch's game seems to be his downfield passing. According to Katz and Nitzberg, Lynch completed just one pass thrown over 20 yards downfield. 

Fortunately for the Broncos, Nicki Jhabvala of the Denver Post reported the Broncos hope to have Siemian back under center for their game against the San Diego Chargers on Thursday night.

With Siemian back in the huddle, the Broncos offense should return to form. Under Siemian's leadership in the first four games of the season, Denver scored over 21 points and racked up at least 300 yards of total offense in each game. They failed to meet any of those benchmarks with Lynch on Sunday. 

Despite the loss to the Atlanta Falcons, a healthy Broncos team still looks like a contender in the AFC.

🚨 SPORTS NEWS ➡️ YOUR INBOX

The latest in the sports world, emailed daily.


X