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NFL Week 6 power rankings

(Andrew Yang/The Intermission)

1. Green Bay Packers (4-0)

The Packers are looking like a powerhouse once again. They are the first team in NFL history to score at least 150 points in their first four games without committing a turnover. A large part of this isn’t just due to the resurgence of Aaron Rodgers, who’s thrown for 1,214 yards and 13 touchdowns with 0 interceptions. Za'darius Smith entered week 5 tied for the league lead in sacks, and Aaron Jones is on pace for 1,500 rushing yards this season. The Packers are looking more dangerous than ever.

2. Kansas City Chiefs (4-1)

The Chiefs were eventually going to lose. They haven’t lost in the team’s last 14 games before Week 5. A mid-game offensive dry spell and a defence getting torched by Derek Carr and the Raiders for nearly 500 yards of total offence may do the trick. Mahomes was running for his life against the Vegas pass rush that’s been lacklustre before this game, pressuring Mahomes 16 times. The Chiefs just showed they were human this week. An interesting match against the Bills ensues in Week 6.

3. Seattle Seahawks (5-0)

The Seahawks are 5-0. Russell Wilson is showing time and time again this season that he deserves to get his first-ever MVP. It’s just how the Seahawks are 5-0 is what’s a bit concerning. The team hasn’t won a game yet by more than eight points. The offence is second in the league in scoring with 30.8 points per game, but the defence in 20th, giving up 27.0 points per game. 

4. Pittsburgh Steelers (4-0)

The Steelers offence is flying high this year. The team is 4-0 for the first time in 41 years. Chase Claypool showcased his playmaking ability torching the Eagles for four touchdowns in a 38-29 win. The big question is if Big Ben’s surgically repaired elbow will be able to hold up for 14 weeks straight and possibly into the playoffs. Only time will tell.

5. Baltimore Ravens (4-1)

The Raven’s defence went off on Sunday. Even though it was against the lacklustre Bengals, the defence combined for seven sacks and 15 quarterback hits in a 27-3 win. The Bengals managed to muster only 205 total yards of offence in the game. The defence covered for an under-average performance out of Lamar Jackson. Over the team's first five games, Jackson has only totalled 949 passing yards and 9 passing touchdowns. Even more unorthodox, Jackson finished the game with only three rushing yards. The offence ranks 24th in the league, a surprise through the first five weeks. 

6. Tennessee Titans (4-0)

The Titans destroyed the Bills in week 5. Despite having their practice facilities closed for over a week, they looked fresher than ever. Tannehill and Henry combined for five touchdowns and shut down the Bills potent offence, making Josh Allen look like a rookie again. The Titans were able to score touchdowns in all six of their trips in the red-zone. This was the Titans' first complete performance this season and showcased why they are a legit contender in the AFC.

7. Buffalo Bills (4-1)

With the Bills looking so great so far this season, it was hard to watch them struggle so mightily against a Titans team that had such a long layoff. The defence struggled mightily in the red-zone and hasn’t displayed the dominance it had over the last two previous seasons, ranking 17th in total yards allowed and 24th in passing yards allowed this season; a far cry from last year. The team will need to try to regroup against a potent Chiefs team next week.

8. Los Angeles Rams (4-1)

The Rams recovered from an ugly win against the Giants last week. The offence started to look like its normal self in a 30-10 win over Washington. Aaron Donald had a monster day, getting four sacks and a forced fumble. Donald leads the NFL with 7.5 sacks this season. He led the Rams defence that only gave up 108 total yards. Jared Goff also started off the game 13-14 for 194 yards and two total touchdowns. While the Rams are 4-1, all of their wins have come against the NFC East; one of the weakest divisions in the NFL. 

9. Cleveland Browns (4-1)

The Browns are surprisingly 4-1 this season for the first time since 1994. The Colts entered this game with one of the top defences in the NFL right now, but the Browns were not fazed. They torched the Colts in the first two quarters, with the Colts giving up more yards in the first half than they have in a game this entire season. When the offence cooled down after halftime, the defence closed out the game for the Browns with big-time plays. The Browns will have to prove they are a real contender against the Steelers next week.

10. New Orleans Saints (3-2)

Drew Brees has been lacklustre for the Saints before Week 5. The quarterback has been endlessly criticized for his inability to attack defences with the deep ball this year. But, this game against the Chargers showed Brees can still move an offence when the Saints need it. Brees threw for over 300 passing yards and two touchdowns as the Saints came back from a 17 point deficit to beat the Chargers in overtime 30-27. If Michael Thomas can restrain himself from punching his teammates, his return will make the Saints offence much stronger.

11. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (3-2)

The main focus of the Bucs disappointing loss against the Bears was the fact that Tom Brady couldn’t do simple math. The future Hall of Famer made a critical mistake down one with less than a minute to go in the fourth quarter, thinking the fourth down play the Bucs had was third down. A more disappointing loss for the Bucs though is the loss of Vita Vea, who was going off for the Bucs. The defensive tackle fractured his leg late in the game, and his loss will be tough to a Bucs defence that depended on him heavily. 

12. New England Patriots (2-2)

The Patriots have other problems other than the team’s practice facility being shut down multiple times over the past week due to positive COVID-19 tests. The team showcased in their last game that without Cam Newton, their offence has serious problems. Brian Hoyer looks finished and Jarrett Stidham doesn’t even look close to ready. Their reliance on Newton for the short-term and the long-term can be very concerning for the Patriots, especially considering his injury history.

13. Las Vegas Raiders (3-2)

Derek Carr showcased against the Chiefs why he can be the man for the Raiders. Carr and Henry Ruggs III torched the Chiefs defence, while the defence stunned Mahomes in a remarkable second-half effort. This resulted in the Raiders' first victory at Kansas City in eight years. The Raiders looked like they could defeat any team when everything is clicking for them. Carr came up clutch for the Raiders, throwing touchdown passes for 59 and 72 yards, and had a clutch fourth-and-1 quarterback sneak to keep Mahomes on the sidelines. The Raiders will have an interesting match against Tom Brady and the Bucs next week.

14. Indianapolis Colts (3-2)

You won’t hear head coach Frank Reich say it, but what’s holding back the Colts right now is Rivers’s disappointing play ever since he arrived in Indianapolis. He threw two interceptions in the loss against the Browns, including a horrible pick-six, and only has four passing touchdowns in five games. While the Colts defence was shredded by the Browns in the first half, it raises concerns if the leagues No. 1 defence coming into week 5 was the product of an easy schedule or not. Only time will tell with this team.

15. Chicago Bears (4-1)

Nick Foles showed he is not the man to help lead the Bears to a championship. Even with the Bears elite pass rush, led by Khalil Mack who had two sacks in the 20-19 win, the Bears quarterback situation is shown to be their greatest weakness. Trubisky has been a no-show through the first four games, and Foles couldn’t do much against a stingy Bucs defence. The Bears will have to sort out their quarterback position if they want to be a contender in the NFC.

16. Arizona Cardinals (3-2)

Kyler looked like a rising star in week 5, throwing for 380 yards in a 30-10 win. Murray showcased his chemistry with DeAndre Hopkins as Hopkins had his third game with at least 130 receiving yards and had a nice one-handed touchdown grab that iced the game. The thing is, this was against the Jets, arguably the worst team in the league right now. Also, the loss of the two-time All-Pro pass rusher Chandler Jones will be a big loss for this Cardinals defence. The Cardinals will have an interesting match against the Dak-less Cowboys next week.

17. Carolina Panthers (3-2)

The Panthers are somehow 3-0 without Christian McCaffrey. A big reason is due to the rise of Mike Davis. He torched the Falcons for 149 scrimmage yards in 25 touches. Robby Anderson also has been a big impact for this Panthers team, totalling 36 catches through five games and at least 99 receiving yards in four of his five games. When McCaffrey comes back, he is in no danger of losing his starting role, but it gives head coach Matt Rhule another option in the backfield to maybe not overuse McCaffrey.

18. Miami Dolphins (3-2)

Fitz-magic is back once again. Fitz-magic torched the 49ers for 350 passing yards and 3 touchdowns en route to a dominating 43-17 win. But if we’ve learned anything about Fitzpatrick’s career, it’s that Fitz-magic always wears off. The time will come when head coach Brian Flores will have to make a decision with the first-round pick Tua Tagovailoa waiting on the sidelines. 

19. Dallas Cowboys (2-3)

A complete catastrophe for the Cowboys this week. What should be remembered as a last-second 37-34 win over the Giants will instead be remembered as a gruesome ankle injury that ended Dak Prescott’s season after an amazing start. Dallas will be forced to use Andy Dalton as their starter. Dalton has shown that he can perform at a high level when surrounded with the right pieces, and he has a chance to showcase that for Dallas now. However, Dalton will probably not be able to perform at the level Dak was performing at, and a questionable defence leaves a lot to be desired for the Cowboys.

20. Los Angeles Chargers (1-4)

Forget Joe Burrow. Right now, Justin Herbert is the man. He arguably delivered one of the greatest performances by a rookie QB in Monday Night Football history. He sees the field in a way that’s so rare for a rookie and is a hidden gem for the Chargers in a lacklustre start. Even with this disappointing start, the Chargers have lost all their games this season by eight points or less. The team has shown they are competitive but may not have the record right now to make a playoff push in a tough AFC West division. 

21. San Francisco 49ers (2-3)

The Dolphins came to Levi’s Stadium and absolutely exposed the 49ers in a shocking 43-17 loss. This leads to major concerns about their defence and Jimmy Garapolo’s position at quarterback. While Jimmy’s return to the lineup after missing two weeks with an ankle sprain was supposed to rejuvenate this offence, he was instead benched at halftime. This raises the question that’s if Jimmy is the right quarterback to help lead this 49ers team to a championship? With a flurry of tough opponents ahead, the 49ers may sink into the sea of irrelevance soon enough. 

22. Minnesota Vikings (1-4)

The Vikings did almost everything right against the Seahawks, controlling them for 55 minutes of the game. It’s those 5 minutes that will haunt them. Seattle managed to score three touchdowns in almost two minutes to start the third quarter and it started to go downhill for the Vikings. Near the end of the fourth quarter, Minnesota failed to convert a fourth-and-1 from Seattle’s 6-yard line, and they couldn’t stop Russell Wilson and DK Metcalf as Seattle blitzed the Vikings for 94 yards to get the game-winning touchdown. The Vikings controlled almost 55 of the game’s 60 minutes and still somehow lost. The Vikings will be looking to try to revive their season with a game against the 0-5 Falcons in Week 6.

23. Houston Texans (1-4)

Deshaun Watson led the way for the Texans first victory this season, throwing for a season-high 359 yards and three touchdowns. The Houston defence took advantage of the Jaguars' mistakes on offence to seal the game in the second half. Brandin Cooks enjoyed a season-high 161 receiving yards and one touchdown, and David Johnson seemed to have a return to form who had over 100 yards from scrimmage for the first time since Week 1. An interesting match against the Titans will show what the Texans are really made of in Week 6.

24. Philadelphia Eagles (1-3-1)

Even in a disappointing 39-28 loss against the Steelers, there were some positives to take out of the game. Miles Sanders and Travis Fulgham both had great games, combining for 226 yards and two touchdowns. The defence had no answers for Big Ben or rookie wideout Chase Claypool in the loss though. The Eagles showed heart by nearly coming back being down 31-14, but mistakes from Carson Wentz and the defence is what held the Eagles back. It won’t get any easier for the Eagles in Week 6 against the 4-1 Ravens.

25. Detroit Lions (1-3)

With a bye week for the Lions and a team regrouping after a tough loss to the Saints in Week 4, it’s hard to believe that Matt Patricia is still employed. The Lions will have an easy next two games against the Jaguars and Atlanta to try to reboot their season, but the Lions haven’t shown us that they’ll take advantage of this in the Matt Patricia era. 

26. Cincinnati Bengals (1-3-1)

The Bengals were beaten up badly against the Ravens in a tough 27-3 loss. Burrow was mauled by Ravens defenders every play, getting sacked seven times and getting hit 15 times. The Bengals offence could only muster 205 total yards of offence. The Bengals offensive line has shown that they can’t protect Burrow, who’s been sacked more than any other passer in the league through the first five games of the season. This raises concerns against another stingy defence in the Colts in Week 6.

27. Denver Broncos (1-3)

The Broncos did secure their first win of the season two weeks ago before a surprise bye week, but it was against the lacklustre Jets, a team that is embracing 0-16 at the moment. What’s even worse is that the Broncos gave up 28 points to the Jets, a team that hasn’t scored more than 17 in any other game. 

28. Jacksonville Jaguars (1-4)

This team is too mistake-prone to win any games right now. While the defence actually showed some improvement against the Texans despite Josh Allen, Myles Jack and C.J. Henderson being injured, missed field goals and fumbles from the Jacksonville offence held them back in breaking their losing streak. Nothing is going right for the Jaguars right now. 

29. Atlanta Falcons (0-5)

The Falcons finally did it. They fired head coach Dan Quinn and general manager Thomas Dimitroff after an embarrassing 0-5 start to the year. Defensive coordinator Raheem Morris takes the place of head coach for a Falcons team that hasn’t been able to recover ever since their crushing defeat against the Patriots in Super Bowl LI. The team is obviously heading towards a rebuild, but does the 35-year-old Matt Ryan still fit on this rebuilding team?

30. Washington Football Team (0-5)

Washington has never been able to regain the magic they had in the week 1 upset over the Eagles. While sacking Wentz eight times in week 1, the Football Team has only been able to muster seven sacks since. Dwyane Haskins was benched, and in Alex Smith’s long-awaited return, was hit way too much for his first game back since 2018. Rivera has said that Allen will remain the starter if he’s cleared to play in the tank bowl against the New York Giants.

31. New York Giants (0-5)

Coming into this season, the football world was excited to see what Danny Dimes would do to build off of a good rookie season, even while having way too many turnovers. What’s been shown is that Jones has taken a step back this year while the turnovers pile up. The Giants blew an early 14-point lead against the Cowboys and let Andy Dalton lead Dallas to a game-winning field goal. Jones has an astounding 31 turnovers in 18 games and it’s clear he will have to increase his level of play to ensure he is a part of the Giant’s future.

32. New York Jets (0-5)

Le’Veon Bell is gone and the Jets haven’t won a game yet this season. It’s clear Adam Gase is not the man for the imploding Jets. The only question is if acting owner Christopher Johnson waits to make a move or follows the prompt path made by the Falcons and Texans.


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