32. Oakland Raiders (0-4) Previous Rk #32
A bye week fortunately means we don’t have to analyze another Raiders loss. The most intruiging thing going on at Raiders camp right now is the coaching vacancy after they let go of Dennis Allen last week. Early speculations are saying Jon Gruden and even Jim Harbaugh are in the mix, both have coaching ties to Oakland, but is there any chance either actually takes the job?
31. Jacksonville Jaguars (0-5) Previous Rk #31
Is it premature to start talking about the Jags running the table and going 0-16 this season? They got the Titans (1-4) next week in what is sure to be an absolute barn burner. At least their fans are enjoying the in-stadium pools! I swear this fully-dressed lady is not photoshopped.
30. Tennessee Titans (1-4) Previous Rk #29
You wanna know what’s worse than being a Titans fan? Being the guy who runs their Instagram account. Just take a look a his captions on each picture as the game goes on and the Titans blow a 25 point lead (click to enlarge that small font)…
29. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (1-4) Previous Rk #30
Tampa Bay might be the best of the worst teams in the league, if that makes any sense. With the exception of that blowout in Atlanta, the Bucs have been competitive in every game. They were actually up 31-26 in the fourth against the Saints until they had possibly the worst drive in NFL history. In four consecutive plays they had a holding call, a botched snap, delay of game, and a false start. After an unpenalized run play that netted zero yards and left the Bucs on their own 1 yard line the drive culminated with Mike Glennon getting taken down in the end zone for a safety. Long story short, if they eliminate mistakes they could actually win some games.
28. New York Jets (1-4) Previous Rk #25
The Jets are sinking fast. After achieving the first shutout of the year questions are looming as to what, if any, are the solutions for all their offensive woes. A lot of people were calling for Geno Smith to grab some pine, and when Vick replaced him in the second half he was just as unproductive. The issue could be their no-name receiving core, or maybe they need to add another QB to the roster…
27. St. Louis Rams (1-3) Previous Rk #28
The Rams gave all the had against the Eagles, and came up just shy of erasing a 27-point deficit by not converting a two-minute drill that started at their own 7 yard line. They lost the game 34-28. Austin Hill looked fantastic throwing for 375 yards, 3 TD’s, and zero picks and seemed pretty confidant about the final drive, “We were rolling. I had no doubts in my mind we were going to win,” Davis said. The Rams have the Niners at home next week.
26. Washington Redskins (1-4) Previous Rk #26
Did anyone really think the Redskins were gonna steal a win last night against the Seahawks who were coming off a bye? Kirk Cousins did his best, throwing for zero picks and two scores, one a well placed 60-yard toss to DeSean Jackson. Jackson actually joined Darren Sproles (Week 2 at IND) as the only players with multiple 50+ yard receptions in a game this season, according to Elias.
25. Cleveland Browns (2-2) Previous Rk #27
The Browns notched the biggest comeback in franchise history this past Sunday, and the largest comeback in league history by a road team. Not only that, but each and every one of the Browns’ games this season has been decided by three points or less.
24. Minnesota Vikings (2-3) Previous Rk #24
Another Thursday Night Football game, another absolute blowout, with the Vikings on the receiving end of Aaron Rogers’ wrath. Hard to really put this into perspective when the Vikings were forced to play their third string QB, Mr. Sam Ponder. Teddy Bridgewater should be back next week, so we’ll see if he really is the difference maker (spoiler alert: he is. Anybody besides Ponder is).
23. Houston Texans (3-2) Previous Rk #22
The Texans pushed the Cowboys to overtime when they traveled only four and half hours to face their in-state rivals, but couldn’t pull off the upset. JJ Watt somehow didn’t have a touchdown, but fortunately Arian Foster got his plus a 100+ yard game. The Texans face the Colts on the national stage next week for Sunday Night Football.
22. Kansas City Chiefs (2-3) Previous Rk #21
The battle between former teammates Alex Smith and Colin Kaepernick did not end well for the Chiefs, who lost 22-17. Smith looked good on the opening drive when he completed 6 of 8 for 61 yards and finished it off with a pass to Travis Kelce who had probably the best celebration of the year.
21. Atlanta Falcons (2-3) Previous Rk #17
The Falcons have not won an outdoor game on the road since Nov. 2012, and that didn’t change this last Sunday when they gave up a double-digit lead to the Giants at the Meadowlands. If you’re a Falcon fan hoping for a turn in the season it’s going to have to happen with almost a completely new O-line. The Falcons’ line lost center Joe Hawley and tackle Lamar Holmes with season-ending injuries last weekend, and left guard Justin Blalock was out with a back issues.
20. Miami Dolphins (2-2) Previous Rk #20
Must be nice to have off days in Miami…
19. New Orleans Saints (2-3) Previous Rk #19
The Saints have a much-needed bye week coming this week. Jimmy Graham left the game early with a shoulder injury, which the team reported yesterday as just a sprain and he shouldn’t miss significant time. The Saints can also use the off week as time to fix their porous defense. After almost losing a home game to the Buccaneers they needed overtime to get the W from a 1-4 team.
18. New York Giants (3-2) Previous Rk #23
Shhhhhh. Don’t tell anyone. The Giants have a three game winning streak. You’re probably noticing that there’s also less Eli hate out there right now. The key is eliminating turnovers. In the Giants three wins, Eli’s touchdown-to-interception ratio has been 8-to-1. In the two losses it’s been 3-to-5. Not exactly rocket science to understand those stats.
17. Pittsburgh Steelers (3-2) Previous Rk #16
A win is a win still, I guess? The Steelers avoided a losing record with an unappealing 17-9 win against Jacksonville. They did it this time with defense. The same defense that checked out early last week and let the Buccaneers steal a late victory. In brighter news, Big Ben has not lost his style.
16. Buffalo Bills (3-2) Previous Rk #15
Kyle Orton at QB1. Playing on the road. Down by 14 to start the game. Tied with less than a minute left. Yet despite all of the that, the Bills pulled off an improbable victory in Detroit on a last second field goal. You think Orton was pumped?..
15. New England Patriots (2-2) Previous Rk #18
Still not 100% sold on the Patriots. Sure, they had a great win against a very good Bengals team on Sunday night, but one good win doesn’t absolve them of a putrid first four weeks. This team still has flaws in the offensive line. They have a shutdown 1-on-1 corner (mis)used in a zone coverage scheme. And they can’t even figure out who should spike the ball after a touchdown…
Just kidding, that was awesome.
14. Baltimore Ravens (3-2) Previous Rk #13
A 20-13 loss on the road to the Colts shouldn’t have Ravens fans think that the sky is falling. Sure, it was a loss, but the Colts are a quality team. An interesting note- Joe Flacco was sacked a season-high four times, one more than his combined total in the first four weeks this season.
13. Carolina Panthers (3-2) Previous Rk #14
The Panthers avoided a three game skid with a solid come-from-behind win in Chicago. It seems that they are the most dangerous when they go into a no-huddle, something that seemed to bring Cam Newton rhythm in the second half that he didn’t have in the first against the Bears. They play the Bengals next week, in The Jungle.
12. Chicago Bears (2-3) Previous Rk #7
Disappointing. That’s the most common word associated with the Bears after their most recent loss at the hands of the Panthers. This team is packed full of talent, but its hard for any team to overcome four turnovers, especially when three came in the fourth quarter. After getting off to a hot 21-7 start, the Bears offense stalled. Jay Cutler went 1-of-5 on passes thrown 15+ yards downfield, two of those being intercepted. Entering the day Cutler ranked 31st (out of 33 qualified quarterbacks) with a 24.0 completion percentage on those throws.
11. Detroit Lions (3-2) Previous Rk #10
The Lions seemed poised to start the season 4-1 prior to last Sunday’s game against the Bills. Unfortunately, it looked like Jim Caldwell’s decision to play Calvin Johnson, despite a nagging ankle injury, appeared to backfire when he reinjured it in the third quarter. Sources say that Megatron may now sit this week. To top it all off, former head coach and Bills D-Coordinator rubbed it in the Lions faces when he carried off the field…per his request
10. Dallas Cowboys (4-1) Previous Rk #12
Dallas is now through the easiest part of its schedule after facing off against: the Niners, Titans, Rams, Saints, and Texans. They’ve done well against those meager opponents with the exception of San Francisco. Next week when they travel to Seattle it should be a good barometer to see just how well they can hang with an elite team. Early lines have the Cowboys as 8 point underdogs, but they might have a chance if Dez Bryant is making catches like these…
9. San Francisco 49ers (3-2) Previous Rk #8
I want to say I’m not on board with the Niners. Kaepernick looks inconsistent. There are talks about this being Harbaugh’s last year, even if they win a Super Bowl. Yet, they are in the same spot they were last year at 3-2, and last year they finished the year going 9-2 for a 12-4 record overall. So, who knows? Maybe they pull themselves together and figure it out. Either way, Brandon Lloyd threw his hat into the ring for best catch of the year…
8. Arizona Cardinals (3-1) Previous Rk #5
The Cards got throttled by one of the best teams in the league when they lost to the Broncos 41-20 this past week. Carson Palmer is still out, but even if he wasn’t he couldn’t help a defense that gave up 568 total yards. Fortunately, his return next week is hopeful when they play the Redskins.
7. Green Bay Packers (3-2) Previous Rk #11
Packers are starting to look good. Hit their theme music!
6. San Diego Chargers (4-1) Previous Rk #6
The Chargers look to be clicking on all cylinders after taking down the hapless Jets 31-0. They almost have a complete team in a great defense and solid pass attack. If Ryan Matthews is able to come back they could have a great running attack to compliment Philip Rivers. Not to look too far down the road but in three weeks we could potentially see a Broncos/Chargers matchup at Mile High where each team is 6-1.
5. Indianapolis Colts (3-2) Previous Rk #9
Right now Andrew Luck leads the league in passing yards (1,617), TDs (14), and has one of the lowest sack counts among starting QBs (6). Of the quarterbacks in the top three of passing yards: Luck, Ryan, Brees, all three have six interceptions on the season. I’m high on this Colts team who is all but a lock to make the playoffs by virtue of being in the weakest division in football: Texans, Titans, and Jaguars. What they do is the playoffs though is really what matters.
4. Cincinnati Bengals (3-1) Previous Rk #1
There is something that happens when the Bengals play on the national stage. Call it “choking”. Freezing. Not showing up. Any way you slice it, the Bengals are 2-8 in prime-time or playoff games since Andy Dalton took the reigns at quarterback. It’s his one glaring flaw and was the biggest thing his detractors said when Dalton signed that $115 million contract this offseason. But for all the hate this loss has to be on the pass rush. Tom Brady was given too much time to make plays, and only sacked once this past game. In the previous four weeks he was sacked nine times. Blame the defense, not Andy. Next week Carolina.
3. Philadelphia Eagles (4-1) Previous Rk #4
The Eagles have been tittering on the edge of falling out of the elite conversation for a couple of weeks now. The secondary made Austin Davis look like a hall-of-gamer out there when he threw for 375 yards and 3 TD’s. It’s all good when they’re averaging over 32 points per game, but if the offense ever stalls this team is in trouble. Blocked punts to touchdowns don’t happen every week…
2. Denver Broncos (3-1) Previous Rk #3
Peyton Manning threw for his 500th career touchdown this past Sunday, a mark only one other player has reached before in the NFL. The Ol’ Gunslinger, Brett Favre, has 508 career touchdowns, a mark Peyton will without a doubt break this year. Unfortunately, Peyton will have to break the record without starting running back Montee Ball, who will be out several weeks with a groin injury. Ball’s replacement will be by committee, with veterans Ronnie Hillman., C.J. Anderson, and rookie Juwan Thompson. Now’s probably not the time to dance Peyton…
1. Seattle Seahawks (3-1) Previous Rk #2
Oh, ho-hum, just another casual win on the road for the defending Super Bowl champs. Russell Wilson had a spectacular game last night on the ground (122 yards, 1 TD) and in the air (201 yards, 2 TDs). Had it not been for three Percy Harvin touchdowns called back on penalties, this game probably could’ve been a lot more out of hand then a 27-17 victory.