Ken's Note: These rankings are the views of the author, and may/do not reflect the views of any other Windy City Gridiron contributor.
Welcome to the Week 6 Power Rankings.
Power rankings are kind of silly and entirely meaningless, and they are also completely subjective... what one person sees as a strength another might see as a weakness. I get that. My reason for doing this feature isn't "I think I know better," but rather to entertain, hopefully amuse and also to generate friendly discussion and debate (within the site rules, of course).
My feature comes out later in the week than pretty much everybody else's on the web because I actually watch every single game I talk about BEFORE posted my rankings (as far as I know, I am the ONLY person doing this in the online media). Gamepass condensed games are the greatest tool ever made for the NFL football junkie. By doing this instead of just watching the highlights (if that) or browsing the box score, I suspect my list looks significantly different than most.
Here's how I have the league shaking out after Week 6:
1) Vikings - (Last week's rating #2) The Minnesota Vikings are the only team in the NFL this season that doesn't have a serious hole in their game. Some parts are stronger than others (the running game trails the passing game), and even though they gave up the sun, moon and stars to get quarterback Sam Bradford after Teddy Bridgewater went down for the season, everything is working for the men up north. Skol!
2) Steelers - (Last week's rating #3 ) Honestly, I should knock them down 3 spots for making me watch those hideous bumble bee uniforms running around the field this weekend. The Steelers dismantled the Jets in a 31-13 romp that, frankly, was not nearly as close as the score would indicate. Yes, they will probably drop one or two more head scratchers on us and get beaten by teams they should blow out, but this team is SOLID.
3) Patriots - (Last week's rating #4 ) Tom Brady's back, the offense is back, so all is perfect in New England, right? Not so fast. Yes, they blew out the Browns, but that Patriots defense is suspect. Still, they jump Denver because of the Bronco's rather inexplicable failure to light up a very bad Falcons defense
4) Broncos - (Last week's rating #1 ) The Denver defense is fantastic, I get that. We all get that. This isn't about the defense, it's about the fact that really bad offenses have been lighting up Atlanta all year long, and Denver did very little against the birds. Paxon Lynch has a great arm, and he played "OK" for a rookie. Having said that, Cortrelle Anderson (CJ) & company got NOTHING done on the ground against one of the worst front sevens in the game.
5) Packers - (Last week's rating #5 ) Aaron Rodgers is baffling, isn't he? I mean, he is a Football God, right? Three TD's (actually four, one was called back), right? Would it be picky of me to state how much "off center" his throws were though? Usually, he puts them dead on the money, many in this last game was just "off" a bit, even that first TD pass to Jordy Nelson was low and away and a tough catch. Yeah, they beat a mediocre team at home in Green Bay, but if Will Tye catches that high pass from Eli Manning and scores what would have been an easy TD, then the Packers would have given up 24 points and had to score more to win. Meh. I'll leave them at 5.
6) Seahawks - (Last week's rating #7 ) Everybody else has them ranked higher than I do, but these guys are not good enough to have home field advantage throughout the playoffs, and that offensive line is really, really bad. Seattle at home is a totally different team than Seattle on the road.
7) Falcons - (Last week's rating #12) They stopped Denver's rookie quarterback, and somehow shut down Cortrelle Anderson (CJ), so I guess I can't say they can't stop ANYBODY any more... they stopped Denver cold. SO... there's that. They are scoring a ton of points, but I just am not convinced that Matt Ryan is the second coming of Joe Montana, not at this point of Ryan's career.
8) Cowboys - (Last week's rating #9 ) Dallas has problems on the defensive side of the ball, but that huge and talented offensive line in front of Ezekiel Elliott means ball control. Time of possession by your offense is any defenses best friend, and Elliott gives Dallas that in abundance.
9) Raiders - (Last week's rating #13 ) The Raiders beat a Chargers team that doesn't have any defense whatever to move to 4-1 on the season. Great record. But... they beat the Chargers, my 27th ranked team, at home in Oakland with late-game heroics. Yes, it was a win, but there has been very little separation for this team, indicative of a Wild Card type year. Note, if you like watching games on GamePass, this one's perhaps the best one of the week.
10) Eagles - (Last week's rating #6 ) Carson Wentz isn't perfect? Stop the presses. As impressive as the rookie is, and he had yet another good game, forcing him to go deep into double coverage late to win the game is probably not a good idea for green. What killed the Eagles is that they came out completely flat and found themselves punched in the face for 14 points in the first quarter. Never visit a bad team's house and spot them a 14 point lead early. Bad idea.
11) Rams - (Last week's rating #11 ) Remember last year when Todd Gurley was tearing the league apart with his rushing power? Apparently the Rams don't. Instead, they trust their (legit) defense and the strong arm of Case Keenum. Here's my thought... probably want to figure out a way to get the ball to Gurley in space, and stop trusting the strong arm of Case Keenum. Oh, and fake punts deep in your own end? Not so much.
12) Bills - (Last week's rating #18 ) I like Tyrod Taylor. He's fun to watch. I like the Bills. I'm glad they are playing well. Have a nice ratings bump!
13) Redskins - (Last week's rating #14 ) The Redskins won at Baltimore. That's good, right? The differences in the game were as followed. Washington's had an 85-yard punt return. Baltimore had a failed fake on a short field goal, and a wide receiver touchdown was overruled on review. Not exactly a stellar dominating win over a mediocre Ravens team, so it doesn't move the needle much. It is a win, so up they go a bit... but they didn't prove they were the better team than my next team.
14) Ravens - (Last week's rating #15 ) I moved Baltimore up for having the sense to fire Marc Trestman. They are 14th and struggling because they were dumb enough to hire Marc Trestman in the first place. The Ravens really don't deserve this ranking because they have been really, really underachieving, but I suspect they will improve after dumping the "Trest-Coast Offense" which was most definitely NOT a thing in Baltimore. Had they gotten one more foot in, they win. Had they covered a punt better, they win.
15) Texans - (Last week's rating #10 ) Losing JJ Watt really, really hurt this team, and so far, Brock Osweiler has not lived up to his pay scale. The team is now, officially, meh.
16) Cardinals - (Last week's rating #19 ) The Cardinals move up a little because Blaine Gabbert was terrible. Don't read too much more into that, it wasn't that Arizona was good... they weren't... but Blaine Gabbert was really, really "lose my job" bad.
17) Chiefs - (Last week's rating #17 ) Bye week, nothing to see here. Nothing to see in their last game either, except for KC getting greased like a wagon wheel.
18) Bengals - (Last week's rating #8 ) You see what happens when you play like that, Cincy? I punish you, just like Elliot ran over you. Boom, you go down.
19) Giants - (Last week's rating #16 ) The New York Giants. You were my second favorite team last week, but did you make me happy? Did you beat Green Bay? No, you did not. Sigh.
20) Buccaneers - (Last week's rating #31 ) Huge jump for Tampa Bay because... well... there's a whole lot of teams right in a row that lost and looked bad doing it. Don't get excited over the Bucs, this is a team with a lot of issues.
21) Jaguars - (Last week's rating #21 ) Jacksonville beat Indy then went on break. They have a lot of young talent. I'm keeping them parked at 21 this week for a "bye" bypass.
22) Saints - (Last week's rating #24 ) Another "bye" bypass, the 1-3 Saints stay put.
23) Colts - (Last week's rating #27 ) They beat the Bears, but this team has so many holes and their offensive line is so bad, they just are not moving the needle at all.
24) Titans - (Last week's rating #28 ) Tennessee actually looked pretty good. Well, they looked as good as they could look in those horrible uniforms (really, can somebody PLEASE give them a better look? Thank you!). This is an ascending team, I like them to keep improving.
25) Lions - (Last week's rating #30 ) The Lions beat the snot out of the Eagles, which means one of two things. Either Philly completely mailed it in so the big Lions win means little power-rankings wise, or the Lions stopped under-achieving their talent for once which is actually worse than option one. For them to move up my rankings, they need to start proving it week-in, week-out. Color me skeptical.
26) Panthers - (Last week's rating #20 ) The Panthers don't need a coach, they need a psychiatrist. Very rarely in the course of the NFL has a team done so little with so much talent. Honestly, somebody's head should roll. I don't know who, but this is crazy bad for a team as talented as they are.
27) Chargers - (Last week's rating #25 ) OK, here's what we've got. Joey Bosa looked really good in his debut. Phillip Rivers is good. The rest of the team? Not so much.
28) Jets - (Last week's rating #22 ) The only good thing I can say about the Jets game is that they had decent looking uniforms when compared to those awful bumble bee jobs that the Steelers had on. Brandon Marshall had some nice catches. Brandon Marshall had huge drops. Brandon Marshall ran his mouth off. "Well, all day long at school I hear how great Marshall is at this or how wonderful Marshall did that! Marshall, Marshall, Marshall!" He didn't win, though. Again.
29) Bears - (Last week's rating #29 ) Chicago doesn't drop a spot after losing to a bad Colts team, what's up with that? There are reasons to hope for improvement in the future, but the present? Not so much. The teams below had worse weeks.
30) 49ers -(Last week's rating #23 ) Blaine Gabbert was bad. Really bad. Claw my eyes out bad. So bad that Colin Kaepernick looks like a good option for them at quarterback. In reality, with a reworked deal, Kaepernick is auditioning for his next gig after he's out of San Francisco. This is a bad thing for power rankings purposes.
31) Dolphins - (Last week's rating #26 ) Wow, this team is a hot mess. They not only are losing, they are losing UGLY. They haven't shown me anything lately, so down the drain they go!
32) Browns - (Last week's rating #32 ) Cleveland's offense isn't that bad, and you can see that their rebuild is heading in the right direction. Having said that, they lost to a pissed-off Tom Brady lead New England team this week to move Cleveland's record to 0-5. The only winless team gets then the 32 spot.
So what do you think? Am I close? Am I entirely wrong? Spill the beans, let us know what you think & how you would rank them!