The Gridiron Gentlemen Power Rankings: Week 8

We might have the most undefeated teams we’ve ever had at this point, but the rest of the league is hugely unpredictable. The result of having so many unbeaten teams is that we’re seeing a lot of ‘less-than-brilliant’ teams rise up the power rankings. Once again this is all personal opinion and the way things are, we could definitely see it turn on it’s head again. Anyway for the time beings, here’s my power rankings

 

32) Houston Texans: The team is a hot mess. The defence isn’t making tackles, the QB situation is now a revolving door of 1 poor option and Arian Foster is now out for the Season. I would be very surprised if the Texans aren’t on the clock come January.

31) Cleveland Browns: Maybe a little harsh having them this low, but the last couple of weeks have been less than impressive. The defence can’t stop the run and the offence can’t move the ball well enough to make up for the deficit the defence leaves them. This team could be due a number of huge changes at both coaching and at GM.

30) Detroit Lions: It remains to be seen whether the coaching changes will make much of a difference, but I guess we’ll find out at least if the problem is the coaching or the quarterback. There are other issues on this team, but maybe some schematic changes might get them a win in blighty.

29) Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Credit to the Bucs for going up 24 points. That all gets taken away however for throwing it away. Winston has made improvements at least, by the defence needs to step up before this team can move up the rankings.

28) Tennessee Titans: Almost certainly too high on this team, but there are at least a few impressive pieces. The defence at least looks okay and Mariota seems to be a wise investment, it’s just they can’t seem to stop slipping into old ‘titansy’ ways.

27) Chicago Bears: As  a Bears fan I might still be a little high on them. The truth is however I don’t have a clue. This is the definition of a rebuilding year, but they do seem to have performed better than at least I expected.

26) San Francisco 49ers: Kaepernick has been up and down (mostly down), in large parts down to the offensive line. The whole team is lacking in depth however, maybe we should lay off Kap a little… well, just a little.

25) Baltimore Ravens: I don’t think I can bring myself to move this team lower, but truth is they probably deserve to be. The defence has struggled since Suggs went down injured, with the real issues coming from the secondary, an area that has been a consistent problem for the Ravens. That combined with the problems at receiver this team has backed themselves into a hole that they will almost certainly be unable to get out of.  

24) Philadelphia Eagles: The team has been a huge disappointment, which stems from serious issues on the offence. Jason Peters injury doesn’t appear to be too serious and we should see him back next week. That probably won’t stop the rot however. Sam Bradford has been poor, DeMarco Murray doesn’t look like he did last year and Jordan Matthews is not the receiver we expected him to be. Not a good look for a head coach that blew up the entire team to get his own way.

23) Buffalo Bills: A valiant effort to get back into a game on Sunday doesn’t change that on defence they’ve come up short. The many offensive injuries are one thing, but the area they were supposed to dominate, they’re simply not. That being said the return of Tyrod Taylor and Sammy Watkins should make them more competitive.

22) Kansas City Chiefs: I still have some faith in this team. The secondary seems to have found it’s form and the front 7 have consistently gained pressure in the run game. Now it’s up to the offence to perform, which relies almost entirely on Charcandrick West. No pressure…

21) Washington: The team need to keep Jordan Reed healthy. He seems to be the key to the offence performing. The problem seems to revolve around the run game, that they just can’t get going. The defence however has been surprisingly good and the major reason they’re still in the running for the NFC East.

20) Jacksonville Jaguars: There is no denying that the Jags came very close to throwing away a 3 score lead, which is a serious concern. They did however put up some serious points and looked good doing it. This team has a lot of raw talent, they just need to harness it.

19) New Orleans Saints: The Saints are moving up and deservedly so. The defence has looked pretty decent over the last couple of weeks, particularly the likes of Cameron Jordan and Stephone Anthony, as well as Delvin Breaux turning out to be a great find. The offence has looked better too, with a successful run game opening up opportunities for Brees to throw the ball deep.

18) Pittsburgh Steelers: I have faith that they’ll get back to winning ways when Big Ben lines up under center, right now though the team are struggling. The Steelers need to be prepared to outscore teams in future match ups.

17) Dallas Cowboys: I don’t know what to think about this team, except that I think the wheels are coming off the tracks somewhat. The whole Greg Hardy thing shows a slight lack of leadership and the obvious holes on offence will hinder them getting wins until Bryant and Romo come back.

16) Indianapolis Colts: Way too high on this team, I just still have some faith that they can get back on track. That being said I am concerned that they’ve managed to do irreversible damage to a QB that should have been a future hall of famer. Until I have clear evidence though that this team won’t get back on track, I still have a little faith.

15) San Diego Chargers: Once again, way too high on this team. They seem to be able to put up a ton of yards, but are constantly on the back-foot thanks to a massively under-performing defence. There is so much potential on this team, they just need to hit their stride.

14) New York Giants: The defensive line has looked solid against the pass, but more than porous against the run. The offence might be potentially a little reliant on a certain wide receiver and it seems to be hurting them a little. That being said, the special teams stepped up in a big way. This team stands as good a chance as any of winning the NFC East.

13) St Louis Rams: There’s a lot of less-than-brilliant teams in the top 15 here and the Rams are one of them. That being said the defence is probably in the top 3 and Todd Gurley should be in a straight up battle for the rookie of the year with Amari Cooper.

12) Oakland Raiders: Oakland have far exceeded expectations largely thanks to the aforementioned Cooper and an exceptional pass rush. This is a decent team that will, in my opinion keep the Chiefs and Chargers away from any chance of a play off spot.

11) Miami Dolphins: The biggest climbers are… Yup, and they deserve it. Yes they’ve played some poor teams, but they’ve been lights out since promoting Dan Campbell to head coach. This team believes they can win and with the talent they’ve got on the roster, I believe it too.

10) Minnesota Vikings:  The fact that this team is winning games with a below par Peterson is a credit to how good they are. The defensive addition of Eric Kendrick has proved to be a valuable one, much like last years pick up of Anthony Barr. I do think we are still yet to see that true wow game from Bridgewater, but this is no question, a good team.   

9) Atlanta Falcon: A couple of poor performances hasn’t had me move them down too much. I think they’re still a good team, we just need to see Matt Ryan pick up his game and punch it into the endzone. The defence however is playing better than most.

8) Seattle Seahawks: Maybe I should start moving them up the rankings, but right now I think this is about the right spot. A couple of well placed wins however will have them shoot up to a potential top 5 position.

7) Denver Broncos: They are here nearly exclusively because of the defence, with Manning seeing something of a drop off that could be harmful to the team. This defence however is really good and if they can even remotely get the run game going, they could be genuine contenders. 

6) New York Jets: They’re every bit the real deal, something that I was skeptical about. Fitzpatrick has done a great job moving the ball and when fully healthy Chris Ivory looks like one of the top backs in the league. Much like the Broncos, the Jets genius is in the defence, which is remarkably reminiscent of the Cards unit Bowles was in charge of. This team actually managed to move up after an ‘impressive’ loss against the Patriots.

5) Carolina Panthers: A team that has finally had a chance to prove themselves against some half decent competition now. Cam and Jonathan Stewart are controlling the offence fantastically, whilst the defence seems crammed with potential pro bowl level pieces. This is a great team, that has been coached up to be a potential challenger.

4) Arizona Cardinals: Despite some silly losses, this team seem to have next to no weaknesses. Chris Johnson, Larry Fitzgerald and Carson Palmer are all doing a great job at looking 5 years younger and are the key pieces on a very potent offence. The defence hasn’t lost a step since the loss of Todd Bowles and are witnessing the emergence of some truly great players. This team could embarrass anyone in the league.

3) Cincinnati Bengals: A Bye week, but it doesn’t change the fact that this is easily the 2nd best team in the AFC. Now it remains to be seen whether their QB, that everyone is expecting to fall short at any point, can keep this going through to and past the 1st couple of playoff rounds.

2) Green Bay Packers: They seemed to weather injuries better than most teams. This is one of the most complete Packers teams we’ve seen in a long time. When they have a few of their injured players get back to full health this will be every but the Super bowl contender.

1) New England Patriots: They could genuinely go unbeaten. I just don’t know who can beat them when they’re playing as well as they are at the moment. Between Brady being in the form of his life and an exceptional front 7, the Patriots are easily Super bowl favourites.

Once again, let me know what you think, so hit us up on twitter!

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