NFL Power Rankings: Reviewing Week 5 Standings After Sunday's Action

Ryan McCrystal@@ryan_mccrystalFeatured ColumnistOctober 2, 2017

Jared Goff and Todd Gurley have helped lead the Rams to a 3-1 start.
Jared Goff and Todd Gurley have helped lead the Rams to a 3-1 start.Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

Through the first four weeks of the NFL season, parity has defined the league. Twelve teams currently sit at 2-2, while the Kansas City Chiefs are the league's lone unbeaten squad, sitting at 3-0 heading into their Monday Night showdown with the Washington Redskins. 

Week 4 failed to provide much clarity, as heavily favored teams such as the Dallas Cowboys, Atlanta Falcons and New England Patriots lost at home. 

Here's a look around the league at the latest power rankings, followed by a breakdown of a few intriguing teams: 

1. Kansas City Chiefs (3-0)

2. Green Bay Packers (3-1)

3. New England Patriots (2-2)

4. Denver Broncos (3-1)

5. Atlanta Falcons (3-1)

6. Pittsburgh Steelers (3-1)

7. Philadelphia Eagles (3-1)

8. Detroit Lions (3-1)

9. Dallas Cowboys (2-2)

10. Seattle Seahawks (2-2)

11. Oakland Raiders (2-2)

12. Carolina Panthers (3-1)

13. Los Angeles Rams (3-1)

14. Buffalo Bills (3-1)

15. Minnesota Vikings (2-2)

16. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (2-1)

17. Houston Texans (2-2)

18. Tennessee Titans (2-2)

19. Washington Redskins (2-1)

20. New Orleans Saints (2-2)

21. Arizona Cardinals (2-2)

22. Baltimore Ravens (2-2)

23. Jacksonville Jaguars (2-2)

24. Indianapolis Colts (1-3)

25. New York Jets (2-2)

26. Chicago Bears (1-3)

27. Miami Dolphins (1-2)

28. Cincinnati Bengals (1-3)

29. Los Angeles Chargers (0-4)

30. New York Giants (0-4)

31. San Francisco 49ers (0-4)

32. Cleveland Browns (0-4)


3. New England Patriots 

Charles Krupa/Associated Press

There are definitely reasons to be concerned about the Patriots. Entering Week 4, Bill Belichick's squad ranked dead last in the NFL in total defense, and surrendering 33 points to the Panthers on Sunday afternoon certainly didn't boost confidence in their ability to stop opposing offenses. 

But as long as Tom Brady is under center, it's impossible to count out the Patriots. 

Brady has thrown for over 300 yards in each of his last three games and still has yet to throw an interception this season. As Adam Levitan of DraftKings points out, Brady is on pace for a record-setting season:

In another division, the Patriots might have more reason to worry, but in the AFC East, even with some early-season struggles, New England should cruise to a division crown and enter January as Super Bowl contenders once again. 


13. Los Angeles Rams

ARLINGTON, TX - OCTOBER 01:  Jourdan Lewis #27 of the Dallas Cowboys pursues Todd Gurley #30 of the Los Angeles Rams in the first half of a game  at AT&T Stadium on October 1, 2017 in Arlington, Texas.  (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)
Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

It was easy to ignore the Rams' hot start when they had only beaten the Colts and 49ers, but after winning a shootout with the Cowboys, it's time to start taking Los Angeles seriously. 

Led by rookie head coach Sean McVay, the Rams lead the NFL in scoring with 142 points—at least three touchdowns more than every other team except the Patriots. 

There will likely be some bumps in the road as second-year quarterback Jared Goff continues to develop, but with a running back like Todd Gurley to help carry the load, the Rams may have what it takes to win with a young QB. 

Surprisingly, the biggest question mark in Los Angeles is the defense. The Rams are one of just five teams that have already allowed 100 points.


16. Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Jason Behnken/Associated Press

The Buccaneers may be the most difficult team to figure out, so landing in the middle of the pack at No. 16 is a fitting spot in the power rankings. 

While the Bucs hold a winning record at 2-1, both wins came at home against the Bears and Giants, who have combined for a 1-7 record. In their lone road game, Tampa was handled easily by Case Keenum and the Vikings in Week 3.

So are the Buccaneers a legitimate contender in the NFC South, or have they just taken advantage of some easy opponents at home?

We may finally get a clearer picture of what the Buccaneers really are on Thursday night when they host the New England Patriots. 

In 2016, the Bucs were just 1-3 at home against teams that finished the season with winning records. So a win over the Patriots could prove the Buccaneers are making progress in their rebuilding process and may be ready to take the next step as a playoff contender this season. 


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