The final undefeated team fell in Week 6 to another top 10 club, which shakes the Week 7 power rankings at the top.
The Atlanta Falcons lost another home game to a team that struggles on the offensive end. Should we begin to question the defending NFC champions as the best squad in their own division?
Running back Adrian Peterson single-handedly forced change within the standings. How far did the Arizona Cardinals move up? Will the three-time rushing champion sustain early success with his third team?
How does Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers' injury affect the team's season outlook going forward?
You can check out the Week 6 power rankings for context on the current standings below.
Week 7 Power Rankings
1. Kansas City Chiefs (5-1)
2. Pittsburgh Steelers (4-2)
3. Philadelphia Eagles (5-1)
4. Carolina Panthers (4-2)
5. Atlanta Falcons (3-2)
6. New England Patriots (4-2)
7. New Orleans Saints (3-2)
8. Houston Texans (3-3)
9. Arizona Cardinals (3-3)
10. Denver Broncos (3-2)
11. Seattle Seahawks (3-2)
12. Los Angeles Rams (4-2)
13. Washington Redskins (3-2)
14. Minnesota Vikings (4-2)
15. Cincinnati Bengals (2-3)
16. Jacksonville Jaguars (3-3)
17. Detroit Lions (3-3)
18. Oakland Raiders (2-4)
19. Tennessee Titans (3-3)
20. Dallas Cowboys (2-3)
21. Green Bay Packers (4-2)
22. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (2-3)
23. Buffalo Bills (3-2)
24. New York Jets (3-3)
25. Miami Dolphins (3-2)
26. Los Angeles Chargers (2-4)
27. Chicago Bears (2-4)
28. New York Giants (1-5)
29. Baltimore Ravens (3-3)
30. Indianapolis Colts (2-4)
31. San Francisco 49ers (0-6)
32. Cleveland Browns (0-6)
Pittsburgh Steelers Secure No. 2 Spot
Despite two bad losses to the Chicago Bears and Jacksonville Jaguars, the Pittsburgh Steelers logged a huge signature victory over the Kansas City Chiefs.
The Steelers' Week 6 triumph sets them apart from the rest, but it's not enough to propel them into the No. 1 spot. The Chiefs have multiple quality wins, including a 27-20 victory over the only other one-loss team in the Philadelphia Eagles.
Pittsburgh didn't dominate the matchup with Kansas City, and we still haven't seen the passing attack live up to its full potential. It's worth mentioning the conflicting reports about wideout Martavis Bryant's state of mind with the team. NFL Network's Ian Rapoport noted the 25-year-old receiver requested a trade:
Bryant refuted the report, per Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reporter Ray Fittipaldo:
Nonetheless, the Steelers' road victory over the league's last undefeated club deserves great respect in the power rankings.
Balanced Arizona Cardinals at No. 9
The Arizona Cardinals logged a season-high 38 points with Peterson taking 26 carries for 134 yards and two touchdowns. He looked every bit the player who won three rushing titles with the Minnesota Vikings.
Peterson's effect on the offense extends beyond a revamped ground attack. Opposing defenses can no longer drop seven to fill the passing lanes without concern for the worst rushing offense in the league.
Now, defensive coordinators may consider putting eight in the box to take down a 32-year-old running back who still knows how to make one cut going downhill. His presence will also help the offense sustain drives.
It's a surge for the Cardinals in the power rankings, but it's well deserved. In a Sirius XM NFL radio interview last month, head coach Bruce Arians said running back David Johnson could return to the team as early as Thanksgiving which would possibly complete the best backfield in the league.
Green Bay Packers' Fall to No. 21
The most somber news came out of Minnesota when Rodgers took a nasty fall on his throwing arm and broke his collarbone, per Rapoport:
Head coach Mike McCarthy confirmed the injury will require surgery for repair, and Rodgers could miss the remainder of the season:
McCarthy also spoke, with certainty, about backup signal-caller Brett Hundley being the starter going forward.
The Packers' fall to No. 21 suggests an immediate drop-off, but Hundley hasn't started a game in his three-year career. We don't know how well he'll play under center. Though he's not Rodgers, the third-year signal-caller may have enough to scrape together a few wins to keep Green Bay in contention for a playoff spot.
In a realistic view, the Packers look like an average team with quality offensive skill players around the quarterback. Nonetheless, the team will depend on the ground attack, more effort on defense and an inexperienced passer to optimize the talent at his disposal, which isn't a promising scenario.