PackFan’s NFL Power Rankings 2018: Week 9

PackFan2005
It was quite an eventful week that led up to the trade deadline. Also, we are already officially halfway through the NFL season. Crazy to think about that. Also, yes, I may be late with these, but I’ve been busy all week with school.

#1. Los Angeles Rams (8-0)
Close win for them, and once again, Gurley, Goff, and Donald all shined at their respective positions. Though, the Rams suddenly look beatable, and they’re probably heading into week 9’s road match with the high flying Saints with wariness.

#2. Kansas City Chiefs (7-1)
Fortunately for Chiefs fans, they didn’t take the turn they had in 2017, when they went from 6-0 to 6-6. Not only do they have a dynamic offense filled with playmakers, but now their defense is improving, which strikes fear into opposing teams. This may be a team that goes places in 2018.

#3. New England Patriots (6-2)
They won a forgettable match on Monday Night Football, but it wasn’t their best performance. This year, Rob Gronkowski has been practically non-existent, partially due to the plethora of receivers and the run game taking off under Sony Michel and James White. Anyway, this team has drastically inproved from where they were earlier this season.

#4. New Orleans Saints (6-1)
Not a great Sunday Night win, especially for Drew Brees, but a win is a win, and New Orleans needed it. They’ve really solidified themselves as the #2 seed in the NFC, pending however a loss. They face a huge test when the Rams come to town this week.

#5. Los Angeles Chargers (5-2)
Rested up and happy, the Chargers are now prepared to face the surprising Seahawks in Seattle.

#6. Carolina Panthers (5-2) +1 ⬆️
Facing the Ravens #1 defense, Cam Newton didn’t skip a beat as he tore them apart. As for Joe Flacco, he made the Panthers defense look elite, which isn’t really true. Carolina is a solid team.

#7. Minnesota Vikings (4-3-1) -1 ⬇️
Despite losing to the Saints, this is still a really solid team that is staying afloat in the NFC with threats all around them. As for Kirk Cousins so far, he’s been good, but not exactly great. Ball security and poorly thrown balls plague him. But I think he can get his act together in the second half of the season.

#8. Chicago Bears (4-3)
After two straight losses, the Bears found their groove again in a win over the Jets. Now once again, they lead the NFC North, but Minnesota is looming. It’s critical they win these next few games.

#9. Pittsburgh Steelers (4-2-1) +2 ⬆️
Despite a rocky start to the season, the Steelers now lead the AFC North at 4-2-1. And I have to say one thing. Le’Veon who? Yep, James Conner’s play has pretty much driven Bell out of Pittsburgh. I’m sure he’ll get a massive contract in free agency after the 2018 season. But James Conner is the man for Pittsburgh.

#10. Washington Redskins (5-2) +2 ⬆️
Are the Redskins really legitimate this season? Wow, I’m still wondering how they lead the NFC East by two games. Alex Smith and Adrian Peterson have brought new life to this team.

#11. Cincinnati Bengals (5-3) -1 ⬇️
They held off a Ryan Fitzmagic comeback attempt with a field goal to win the game. Despite the win, it really shouldn’t have gotten that close. Especially playing Tampa Bay of all teams. While Cincy’s defense has flashed at times, it remains an issue for them.

#12. Baltimore Ravens (4-4) -3 ⬇️
Very ugly loss for Baltimore, as Joe Flacco did Flacco things and largely doomed his team. Defense for them was also uncharacteristically soft. They need to step it up to stay in playoff contention.

#13. Houston Texans (5-3) +2 ⬆️
Definitely not a perfect season for Houston, but since starting 0-3, they’ve won five straight games, and look to make a playoff run, pending they keep their momentum up.

#14. Green Bay Packers (3-3-1)
If not for a selfish play, Green Bay could have upset the NFL’s only undefeated team. They surprised many and managed to keep up with the Rams all throughout Sunday, but came up short in the end. Now they have a hole at safety with Ha Ha Clinton-Dix heading to the Redskins.

#15. Philadelphia Eagles (4-4) -2 ⬇️
If we’re being honest here, Philly’s London win wasn’t great. We could also say the same about their season. They look nowhere near the super bowl team they were last year. A mere year ago, they were the talk of the NFL and Cason Wentz was en route to an MVP award. Unfortunately, 2018 hasn’t panned out the way they wanted.

#16. Seattle Seahawks (4-3) +2 ⬆️
Playoffs? If you asked anyone at the beginning of the season, they would’ve laughed. No one thought that the Seahawks would recover after they lost the Legion of Boom over the offseason. But, they had plans of their own, now sitting at 4-3 and vying for a wild card spot. With Russell Wilson and a resurgent run game, that could very well be a possibility.

#17. Atlanta Falcons (3-4)
According to NFL.com, they only have a 16% chance of making the playoffs. That’s surprising, considering Atlanta’s success over the past few seasons. Heck, they’ve even shown flashes this season, but they’ve lost too many close games. And their defense is their biggest weakness. As for the playoff percentage, I wouldn’t worry about that. They had Jacksonville with a 50% chance of making the playoffs, so I’m sure it can’t be that accurate.

#18. Miami Dolphins (4-4) -2 ⬇️
A magical start to the season has come crashing down for the Dolphins, now sitting at 4-4, behind many AFC teams. They’ve lost too many players to injury, most notably Albert Wilson, who took the league by surprise in his short run of success. The Brock Osweiler led Dolphins are in a precarious spot right now.

#19. Detroit Lions (3-4)
It was kind of hard to find a team under Detroit that even deserved to move to #19, so I just kept them here. Bad performance against Seattle? Well, yes, but then again, Seattle isn’t too bad right now. Don’t forget the Lions are still in a four way race for the NFC North title.

#20. Indianapolis Colts (3-5) +7 ⬆️
Don’t sleep on the Colts. They could surprise everyone and make the playoffs as a wild card, or even a division champion. After all, they aren’t really in the most competitive division right now. Andrew Luck as it turns out is really what they needed to succeed. Oh, and their defense is really helping things as well.

#21. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (3-4)
After four interceptions, the Bucs put in starter turned backup, and he went all Ryan Fitzmagic again. He nearly rallied Tampa to a win, but was cut short by a field goal. Here’s what needs to be done in the bay. Get rid of Jameis Winston. I still wonder why his lack of growth since 2015 isn’t concerning to them.

#22. Dallas Cowboys (3-4)
After a week of rest and showing Amari Cooper the playbook, it is time for action in week 9, against a fellow 3-4 team in the Titans.

#23. Denver Broncos (3-5)
Their dominant win over the Cardinals has been forgotten, as they get back to where they were before that game. Once again, the Chiefs prevailed against them.

#24. Jacksonville Jaguars (3-5) -4 ⬇️
Ladies and gentlemen, take a front row seat to see Jacksonville’s season unravel firsthand. They had a promising start, but, you know, Blake Bortles happened. He needs to go. Badly.

#25. New York Jets (3-5) +1 ⬆️
The Bears easily dismantled the Jets on Sunday. But not many people are realizing the flashes of good Gang Green is showing. It may take an extra season or two, but they should be a better team at some point in the near future.

#26. Tennessee Titans (3-4)
This team really needed that bye week, especially going into a critical game against the Cowboys in week 9.

#27. Cleveland Browns (2-5-1) -3 ⬇️
I heard a long, collective sigh from Cleveland on Sunday. Browns fans finally realized their team sucks again. But hey, at least they finally did something right and fired Hue Jackson. That should benefit them in the long run.

#28. San Francisco 49ers (1-7)
Reason for not dropping San Fran? Arizona is their kryptonite, and the niners haven’t been terrible otherwise. But now guess what? C.J. Beathard is injured. Who is behind him? Nick Mullens? Good luck with that.

#29. New York Giants (1-7) +1 ⬆️
Let’s face it. New York’s talent is being wasted on an old quarterback who just can’t play anymore. Eli Manning needs to be sent packing soon. Maybe they can bench him for Kyle Lauletta at some point. Then again, we all know what happened with Geno Smith last season.

#30. Arizona Cardinals (2-6) +2 ⬆️
I’m starting to think their wins over the 49ers will be their only wins this season. Yeah, they’re that bad. 2-14, here they come.

#31. Buffalo Bills (2-6) -2 ⬇️
This offense is just... awful. They can’t function on any quarterback. They need help.

#32. Oakland Raiders (1-6)
Looks like they kept up with the Colts for a little bit of their game, but suddenly decided, “meh, rather have the first overall pick anyway.” Oakland fans, you should be more excited for your offseason than your actual season.

Comments

Should be interesting to see how the season plays out but I’m still wondering how the Chiefs will blow it this year. They are the type of team to go 15-1 and lose at home to a team like the Titans in the playoffs - Randomator

Andy Reid’s weakness is the postseason. If they can win the divisional this year, then they may have a chance to knock off the Patriots. Yep, my AFC Championship Prediction is Kansas City and New England. - PackFan2005

P