With new upsets, new teams emerge as top contenders in the league. Here are my current power rankings heading into week 6 of the NFL season:
1. New England Patriots (5-0): Although they have played subpar teams thus far, it is hard to not have them as number one in the league. Brady is defying all odds at age 42 and still winning. Belichick is once again proving he is the best coach in the league and maybe of all time. For once though it looks like their strength is not in their offense, but in their defense. Their defense ranks first in the league in all categories and looks to be unstoppable. Unfortunately, we will not know if this is true because they have two easy matchups back to back against the Giants on Thursday night and against the injury-ridden Jets on Monday Night Football.
2. Kansas City Chiefs (4-1): Despite their loss to the Colts, I still think they are one of the best teams in the league. Mahomes is still putting up MVP numbers, all without Tyreek Hill. I believe though, that if this team is going to win a Super Bowl they need to establish their running game. They need to find that balance in order to keep teams on their toes and make their play calls less predictable. However, I believe that they will bounce back in Week 6, and return to the high scoring team we are used to seeing.
3. Green Bay Packers (4-1): The Packers showed after an impressive win over the Cowboys that they mean business this year. I believe that they are the best team in the NFC right now. Their defense looks very impressive, especially their secondary. If their defense can keep it up and their offense can continue this explosiveness, they could be the team to beat this year.
4. Seattle Seahawks (4-1): With an impressive win on Thursday night, the Seahawks are proving themselves to be serious Super Bowl contenders, especially if Russel Wilson can continue playing at the MVP caliber lever he has been playing so far this season. Also, with Chris Carson’s impressive performance of 118 yards on 27 carries accompanied by a receiving touchdown, the Seahawks show that they can run to balance out the pass. The defense had some issues, although, it is hard to judge since they played an explosive Rams offense.
5. New Orleans Saints (4-1): The Saints look strong even with the absence of Drew Brees. Their defense with an outstanding performance of 9 sacks in Week 5 is proving that they are not only an offensive team but have strength in their defense. Teddy Bridgewater is proving that he is still an elite NFL QB, with an outstanding performance on Sunday, throwing for 314 yards and 4 touchdowns.
6. San Francisco 49ers (4-0): The 49ers are the underdog team of the season. No one expected them to be undefeated, especially after Jimmy Garoppolo’s rough preseason. The defense captained by rookie Nick Bosa and All-Pro Richard Sherman, look strong. The most impressive part of the 49ers thus far is their RBs. Their crew of Raheem Mostert, Tevin Coleman, and breakout star Matt Breida look very impressive so far this season. The only worry I have for this team is their consistency. Their offense tends to look a bit shaky most games. However, if they can continue this, they could be a powerful team in an already competitive NFC West division.
7. Dallas Cowboys (3-2): Despite their upsetting loss against the Packers, the Cowboys still look strong. Their defense presents some worries, allowing close to 350 yards a game. Dak Prescott and the explosive offense, on the other hand, look great. They average almost 470 yards a game, making them one of the most explosive offenses in the league. I believe they will not only bounce back in Week 6 with a win over the injury-ridden Jets but explode these next couple of weeks.
8. Houston Texans (3-2): Houston Texans looked strong this weekend against a struggling Falcons team. Their defense could use some work. They allow close to 400 yards a game, which makes it difficult on the offense. However, the offense seems to be up to the challenge, averaging almost 27 points and 400 yards a game. The Texans look promising if they can get their defense under control.
9. Los Angeles Rams (3-2): The Rams look like a high scoring, offensive-oriented team. Jared Goff needs to minimize the turnovers in order for them to have more success. I believe the team would have more success balancing the passing game with the running game. This would keep the pressure off Jared Goff and keep him from having to throw 50-some times a game. This would allow their defense to be more successful. It would slow the tempo of the game and allow the Rams’ time of possession to be greater, which in turn would give their defense more rest. After all, they have the highest-paid RB, and arguably the best RB in the NFL today. Therefore, they might as well use him.
10. Indianapolis Colts (3-2): The Colts look strong after a huge win over the Chiefs on Sunday Night. The Colts defense, captained by Darius Leonard, looks very impressive, holding the best offense in the league to only 10 points. Also, it looks like the Colts may have found their perfect replacement for Andrew Luck in Jacoby Brissett. I think he has shown all the haters out there that not only is he worthy of being a starting QB, but he can be a successful one too. Paired with an explosive runner in Marlon Mack, the Colts offense looks great, especially coupled with their offense busting defense.
11. Baltimore Ravens (3-2): Despite their defensive issues, the Ravens offense looks strong as they rank among the top 5 in all offensive categories. However, the Ravens may struggle in the upcoming weeks as they suffered injuries to Marquise Brown, Mark Andrews, and a season-ending injury to Tony Jefferson. This leaves the already vulnerable defense even more vulnerable. I believe they will be very active before the trade deadline, maybe signing former all-pro safety Eric Berry or make a trade for Jalen Ramsey. I do not think this team can make a deep playoff run without a significant signing or change to their defense.
12. Buffalo Bills (3-2): With the return of Josh Allen to the lineup, the Bills offense looks strong, but not as strong as their young defense. Allowing only 290 yards per game, the Bills defense is showing they can win games with their defense. After a disappointing loss in a close game to the patriots Week 4, Josh Allen bounced back defeating an impressive Titans team. Allen is looking like the answer at QB the Bills organization was looking for.
13. Carolina Panthers (3-2): Christian McCaffrey is a beast. 4 total touchdowns this weekend almost single-handedly giving them the win. Having said that, Kyle Allen has shown flashes and the Panthers are 3-0 under him. The pairing of a time-consuming, run-heavy offense and their pretty good pass stopping defense seem to be an impressive combination. I think this streak will come to an end soon, but if they can keep it up they will be in the playoff mix.
14. Philadelphia Eagles (3-2): Despite their defensive struggles, the Eagle’s defense showed promise in Week 5. The offense looks great, however. Jordan Howard seems to be the answer to their offense. Balancing out the run with the pass has seemed to help this team even if it means less impressive numbers for Carson Wentz. If they can continue this, paired with Carson Wentz and that explosive offense, they will be a playoff contender.
15. Minnesota Vikings (3-2): After the scandal last week, the Vikings offense was revamped and looked great. Kirk Cousins finally looks like he can play what he is worth in salary. If they can balance the passing game with Dalvin Cook’s breakout year, they should have a lot of success.
16. Detroit Lions (2-1-1): Coming off an impressive Week 4 and a bye week, the Lions surprisingly look impressive. Matthew Stafford is having one of his best seasons yet. I think they will struggle down the road as they are apart of one of the toughest and most competitive divisions in football. They will be tested this weekend against the highly ranked Packers. It should be a good game, however, I think the Lions will fall to 2-2-1 after Week 6.
17. Los Angeles Chargers (2-3): The Chargers are the most disappointing team this season. After a preseason full of hype, they have done nothing but disappoint, especially after this weekend’s loss to the Broncos. Despite their struggles, I believe they will pick it up in the coming weeks, especially since they will be getting back their All-Pro RB, Melvin Gordon.
18. Chicago Bears (3-2): The Bear’s defense has seemed to get stronger and stronger as the year goes on. The defense, however, is not their issue. It is the offense. Whether it’s Chase Daniel or Mitchell Trubisky at QB I believe the Bears will continue to struggle unless they can re-establish their running game.
19. Tennessee Titans (2-3): Marcus Mariota looks to be having his best season yet. This might be because of the help of Derrick Henry and their outstanding defense. I still don’t see them making the playoffs, but they could upset some good teams.
20. Jacksonville Jaguars (2-3): Minshew Mania! After the emergence of Gardner Minshew III, the Jaguars have looked impressive. Despite their loss last week, I believe they may make a push towards the playoffs, upsetting some strong teams along the way.
21. Oakland Raiders (3-2): The Raiders have bounced back well after the loss of Antonio Brown and Vontaze Burfict. Players like Josh Jacobs and Tyrell Williams have shown that the Raiders can win without All-pro players on their offense. This team is the scariest moving forward in the NFL as they are one of the youngest teams. I believe they will continue to surprise and upset some good teams for the rest of the season and maybe even make a run at the playoffs as a wild card.
22. Cleveland Browns (2-3): After an impressive Week 4 win against the Ravens, the Browns looked like they would finally live up to the hype, but this is not what we saw last night. They got completely blown out. Baker looked terrible and their defense got picked apart by a pretty good 49ers’ offense. We will see if they can bounce back after the short break, but I don’t see them breaking .500 this season.
23. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (2-3): After a huge upset against an impressive Rams team, the Buccaneers looked like they could be good. In Week 6, they had a hard-fought loss to a very good Saints team. Their defense does not look very good at all, except for Shaquil Barrett who has registered 9 sacks in just 5 weeks.
24. Atlanta Falcons (1-4): The Falcons are another surprisingly disappointing team. Their offense looks great, but it’s their defense that is killing them. If they are going to make a playoff push, their defense is going to have to pick it up.
25. New York Giants (2-3): Daniel Jones proved all the haters wrong up until now. In Week 5, he looked like a rookie against a very good Vikings defense. Granted they don’t have their star running back, but they still look pretty good, especially for a young team.
26. Pittsburgh Steelers (1-4): The steelers seem like they cannot catch a break this year. Big Ben gets knocked out for the year. Then, Mason Rudolph almost gets killed. Despite these crucial injuries, their defense has looked strong. I believe this will be a big building year for them with Juju Smith Schuster and James Conner leading the way.
27. Arizona Cardinals (1-1-3): Kyler Murray and the Cardinals offense has looked explosive. It’s their defense that is holding them back. Hopefully, they can have some success so that Kyler Murray’s confidence is not killed by the end of the season.
28. Denver Broncos (1-4): After a huge upset defeating the Chargers in Week 6, the most important question in the NFL reemerges: Is Joe Flacco Elite? All jokes aside, the Broncos’ offense looked impressive as Joe re-established his long ball.
29. New York Jets (0-4): With the many injuries to a young impressive team on paper, the Jets have struggled. Although they get back their starting QB this week, I do not see them getting their first win until at least Week 9.
30. Cincinnati Bengals (0-5): The Bengals do not look good. After showing some flashes Week 1, they have struggled since. However, their future looks better with the return of John Ross III and AJ Green, nearing.
31. Washington Redskins (0-5): After the firing of their head coach, Jay Gruden, the Redskins seem to be rebuilding. However, not everything about them this season has been bad. Terry Mclaurin has been a breakout star setting records and despite the 3 interceptions, Dwayne Haskins shows potential.
32. Miami Dolphins (0-4): Ah, what is there to say about the Miami Dolphins. They stink. They won’t win a game this season. They play the second-worst team in the league this Sunday so we’ll see if they will be able to get a win.