After waiting for what felt like an eternity, we successfully and joyfully made it through Week 1! Here are this week’s NFL Power Rankings.
Football is back! In what has been an insane and unforgettable year, it was uncertain a few months ago whether or not football would be able to return. Football fans will likely never take their favorite sport for granted again.
While it was incredible to be able to watch real, live football this weekend, there were not as many surprising upset wins as in previous years. That being said, it was still an interesting first week.
The Kansas City Chiefs looked to be in midseason or even postseason form, whereas the L.A. Chargers looked lost offensively without Philip Rivers under center. The Las Vegas Raiders looked sharper offensively than in previous seasons with some newfound speed on the outside from Henry Ruggs III.
Storylines began to form in Tampa Bay, where Tom Brady‘s first start in a game that didn’t include Bill Belichick looked shaky. Meanwhile, Belichick’s Patriots, led by Cam Newton, knocked off the Miami Dolphins. These are just a few of the storylines that emerged in Week 1, but who looked impressive? Here are our first power rankings of 2020.
The Chiefs look like they are at the top of their game. In fact, with the debut of Clyde Edwards-Helaire, the Kansas City offense looks more electric than the one that led them to a Super Bowl a season ago. With the defense destined to improve when Bashaud Breeland and Mike Pennel return from suspension, the entire team may just get better. The Chiefs rolled over the Houston Texans this week, who looked completely outmatched in both talent and coaching.
Baltimore is still nipping at the Chiefs’ ankles. Lamar Jackson and the Ravens steamrolled the Cleveland Browns by a final of 38-6. Jackson had a total of 320 yards and 3 touchdowns and the offense did not skip a beat. What may be more impressive, however, is that the defense looked impressive despite the release of former All-Pro Earl Thomas. NFL fans likely have the matchup between the Ravens and Chiefs in Week 3 circled on the calendars with expectations of it being one of the best games of the season.
Aaron Rodgers was brilliant on Sunday, returning to his true top 5 quarterback form. Whether it be a newfound energy due to the drafting of Jordan Love or just returning to the game fully healthy, there was no denying how good Rodgers was against the Minnesota Vikings. The Packers look ready to be a contender behind an elite level quarterback.
The Saints didn’t look as dominant as the Chiefs or Ravens, but they did beat a decently talented opponent in Tampa Bay. In that matchup Drew Brees and Tom Brady looked shakier than in previous openers. That being said, New Orleans has a talented roster with two talented running backs and one of the top receivers in the NFL. Michael Thomas tweaked his ankle, which will be something to keep an eye on going forward. For now, the Saints remain among the top teams in NFC, despite not looking as dominant as some expected.
Like many of the other teams at the top of this list, the Seahawks have excellent quarterback play. Wilson was dealing on Sunday after throwing for 4 touchdowns and nearly 350 yards against the Falcons. Seattle looks destined for greatness if they can stay at this pace and continue to get production out of their big-time receiver D.K. Metcalf. Seattle certainly looked like a contender this week.
Pittsburgh started the season with a win. Although they did not look electric, they easily defeated the Giants with a smothering defense. Ben Roethlisberger worked on knocking off the rust and the offense looked serviceable enough to allow their defense to carry them the rest of the way. Mike Tomlin and company will undoubtedly figure it out and the Steelers are destined for a playoff spot this season.
It was a disappointing start to the season for the 49ers who dropped game one to the Cardinals, who looked impressive on both sides of the ball. While Jimmy Garoppolo remains somewhat of a question mark, the rest of that team remains one of the most talented rosters and coaching staffs in the NFL. Look for the 49ers to rebound.
The Bills are not a world beater, but they have an effective gameplan that should keep them hovering in the top ten all season. Buffalo has a very talented defense with some playmakers. With a dominant win over the Jets in Week 1, the Bills are eyeing a first-place finish in the AFC East for the first time since 1995 led by their dominant defense and uneven offensive play.
While everyone clamors about the excitement that Aaron Rodgers showed with the Packers victory, very little is being made about how competent the Vikings looked. While obviously not dominant, they hung with Green Bay throughout and put up 34 points. Once they settle in, they should be in good shape in the NFC North.
Not all went as planned in so-called “Tompa Bay.” Brady looked… Well, his age. Brady threw two interceptions, one of which resulted in a defensive touchdown for the Saints. With all of the hype surrounding the Bucs to start the season, it was a let down to see them start 0-1. Expect them to bounce back soon.
Tennessee had a weird game in Denver. Stephen Gostkowski missed everything that he kicked except for the one that mattered most. Derrick Henry didn’t have much space to operate. It looked as though Tennessee was rustier than some teams. However, it is still clear that they are well coached and have the talent to hang with some of the tougher teams in the NFL.
Look out for Arizona. In a shocking upset, the Cardinals beat the 49ers in their opener. Kyler Murray looked like he was playing college ball again rushing for nearly 100 yards on top of the 231 yards he threw for. DeAndre Hopkins has provided new life for that passing offense and the defense has some swagger. Arizona may be a team to watch down the stretch.
To the surprise of no one but Skip Bayless, the Rams knocked off the Cowboys, looking their best since their Super Bowl run in 2018. Aaron Donald looked like one of the best defensive players in football and the offense looked more effective running the football than they had in some time. The Rams are a team that remains a question mark, but could surprise.
Tom Brady? No. How about something completely different? Cam Newton looked as much like Superman as we have seen in some time. The Pats sliced and diced the Dolphins by running the ball an obscene amount. With Bill Belichick running the show and Newton’s ability to make plays, the Patriots may have some mobility in the power rankings in weeks to come.
Denver looked like they had some grit. When the game got tough against Tennessee, they refused to back down and pushed themselves to a late lead. Unfortunately, they could not slam the door and lost the lead late in the game. Melvin Gordon looks very effective and if Courtland Sutton can get healthy, their offense could see some room for growth.
Dallas was a disappointment. After being lauded as the team with the most talented roster for what seems like the 20th season in a row, they laid an egg against Los Angeles. While Cowboys fans will cry foul about a poor call by a referee at the end of the game, the truth of the matter is that the Cowboys struggled to move the ball and convert on third down. Dallas can figure it out, but it isn’t a great start.
Philip Rivers threw for a bunch of yards and a couple of picks. In the AFC West, that is nothing new. For the Colts, it is. Indy looked sharp with Parris Campbell making plays with his speed. However, the defensive effort looked lackluster to say the least as they allowed Gardner Minshew to throw for 3 touchdowns. The Colts will need to turn it around quick if they hope to win the AFC South.
It doesn’t seem fair to play the Andy Reid-led Chiefs the first week of the season, but someone had to do it. Houston showed promise early, but ultimately faltered and got dominated after the first quarter. David Johnson looked solid, but Bill O’Brien did not.
Atlanta got beat up by the Seahawks, but they still showed a competitive spark. If the Falcons can work it out on defense, they could be a very solid team.
Philadelphia embarrassed themselves by blowing a lead to the Washington Football Team led by Dwayne Haskins. The Eagles always seem to be beat up, but many projected Washington to be at the bottom of the NFL’s barrel this season. It’s early but that looked rough.
Among things that were a pleasant surprise, the Raiders showed some speed on offense. While Josh Jacobs got most of the load, Henry Ruggs III burned down the field for a big play and it will be interesting to monitor their success from week to week. Las Vegas needs to get the most out of their youngsters and they did in Week 1.
The Chargers held on to win against the Bengals, but it could have easily went to overtime. The offense certainly didn’t look flashy. Going forward they will need better results if they want to be competitive this season.
Mitch Trubisky and the Bears had a rocky start, but came together in the second half to rally for a win to start the season. While the Bears have a long way to go, Matt Nagy has his team moving in the right direction.
Ron Rivera has brought a winning mindset to Washington. With a solid defensive performance, the Football Team took major steps toward being competitive in the NFC East. They now find themselves in first after this week. It seems unlikely that their lead will hold, but anything is possible.
Teddy Bridgewater looked like a game manager for Christian McCaffrey. Carolina fell to the Raiders in a tight game. In a tough division, it doesn’t seem like their is much wiggle room for the Panthers to drop games like that.
Jacksonville pulled off a victory that very few saw coming. Minshew Magic was flying all around when the Jags took care of business against the Colts. Unfortunately, they don’t have a ton of talent on either side of the ball. Jacksonville will need to find some sustainability in the coming weeks.
Joe Burrow was interesting to watch as the Bengals lost yet again in heart-breaking fashion. Cincinnati has some upside, but they must show something on the offensive side of the ball.
The Lions had a victory in their paws, but dropped it. Rookie De’Andre Swift had a shot to put the Lions ahead with seconds remaining but dropped the ball in the end zone. Such is life in Detroit. The Lions have some tougher games ahead and need to win against teams like the Bears if they hope to do much of anything in 2020.
Cleveland looks as bad as ever. While it could be a flukey game to start the season, the Browns got slaughtered by a good Ravens team. They didn’t even put up much of a fight despite the weapons they have on offense.
The Giants looked like a similar team to what we saw in 2019. Daniel Jones and company look incapable of making good decisions. The Giants are doomed until they can adequately use the talent that they have.
Miami was a sleeper team for a lot of teams, but looked as though they could not even slow the Patriots down. Ryan Fitzpatrick looked like the Mr. Hyde version of himself. It was an ugly game to start the season. Plenty of time to fix it, though.
Adam Gase is a joke for everyone but Jets fans. His team looked unprepared and unwilling to play in a competitive football setting. Unfortunately for those that like the Jets, it seems as though there will be no change until Gase is not the person running the show.