2016 NFL Week 3 Powre Rankings
The rankings are going to get a massive shakeup after Week 2’s games. This shakeup is not about Overreaction Monday or a prediction of where teams will ultimately finish, of course. However, some teams showed so poorly during Week 2 that it must reflect in the rankings.
1. Pittsburgh Steelers (2-0).
So many people are automatically putting the Patriots in the Super Bowl (for some strange reason), but the Steelers (along with Denver [both are teams that]) can beat them with their style of play. Just imagine if Martavis Bryant could lay off the weed? But they will get Le’Veon Bell back after Week 3, he who is only the best RB in the NFL.
2. Denver Broncos (2-0).
The B-men MIGHT be better than they were last year. DeMarcus Ware’s injury isn’t all that big of a deal, as they have Shane Ray and Shaq Barrett waiting in the stead. Trevor Siemian hasn’t been staggeringly good — although he has not been bad, either — nor does Denver need him to be. Denver did not have stellar QB play at any point last season. Now they have a consistent, unquestioned bell cow at RB with CJ Anderson, and it is paying dividends.
3. Minnesota Vikings (2-0).
Losing Adrian Peterson (although presumably not for season) may set them back slightly, but if they can protect Sam Bradford, the Vikes will be fine. They need to get Xavier Rhodes and Shariff Floyd back in order to further bolster their defensive depth.
4. Houston Texans (2-0).
Houston’s defense is top notch, now they have an offense to go along with it. Although we did not really see that in Week 2, they have several weapons now, instead of one like last season.
5. New York Football Giants (2-0).
The Giants spent nearly a quarter billion dollars in total contracts in order to bolster their league-worst/all-time team worst defense from 2015, and in 2016, no one has been able to run the football on them. Only Green Bay and Seattle have stuffed the run better to this point. This was expected going into training camp, manifested in preseason and continues thus far. The issue has been the offense, which has not hit its stride (and has too many turnovers), but once the team finds a groove, the Giants will arguably be among the top three offenses in the NFC.
6. New England Patriots (2-0).
A plug-and-play system; such as the one the Patriots feature, speaks to the magnificence of the head coach and offensive coordinator over players. This cannot be emphasized enough.
7. Arizona Cardinals (1-1).
The Cards simply didn’t show up Week 1 prepared to play. That was not the case against the Tampa Bay team, which was discombobulated in every single facet of the game.
8. Cincinnati Bengals (1-1).
Cincinnati is gonna play in a lot of dogfights this season. More times than not, they will come out on the positive end.
Until the playoffs, then it is wait-and-see.
9. Carolina Panthers (1-1).
They aren’t as good defensively. They’re opportunistic, but giving up 27 to a Blaine Gabbert-led team — and a game that was a one-score game until the final five minutes of the 4th quarter; thereby distorting how close the game was before Gabbert turned it over at will in comeback mode after Carolina made it 41-27.
10. Green Bay Packers (1-1).
Michael Lombardi made a salient point about the Packers’ offense lacking tendencies (although they do have tendencies; just that it is a tendency to LACK a tendency), and they are pretty easy to defend with most of the looks they provide offensively. Additionally, Lombardi says the Packers’ system favors players over plays, and when too much emphasis is placed upon Aaron Rodgers’ offensive weapons to win their routes (or run effectively, in the case of Eddie Lacy). When they don’t Rodgers is overthinking it in the pocket, leading to some of the struggles the Packers have seen from their offense. It is fixable, however.
11. Seattle Seahawks (1-1).
Darrell Bevell’s at it again, huh? Every season the Seahawks seem to look like 11 guys who just met each other at SeaTac International just before kickoff. To only muster 3 points against a Rams team with an enigmatic defense, and little to no diversity in playcalling is an abomination. The defense is fine, 2nd best in the NFC against the run, but this has been an all-too-common theme for Seattle in the past few seasons.
12. Baltimore Ravens (2-0).
Least impressive 2-0 team, but wins are wins.
13. Kansas City Chiefs (1-1).
The Chiefs aren’t ever going to win anything of substance when they refuse to consistently attempt to pass the ball downfield.
14. New York Jets (1-1).
The Jets got back on track with an obliteration of Rex Ryan’s leaky defense. No one’s really worried about the Jets defensively, or their skill players; although Brandon Marshall may not play in Week 3 with what initially appeared to be a gruesome knee injury. He says he’s fine, but will likely be a gametime decision. The Jets’ fate is all tied to Ryan Fitzpatrick’s ability to avoid choking when the chips are at the middle of the table.
15. Atlanta Falcons (1-1).
This game was more about what the Raiders didn’t do (two vintage tipped passes off Matt Ryan, one resulting in a touchdown, instead of both ending up as Raiders interceptions) and less about what the Falcons did.
16. Oakland Raiders (1-1).
Ken Norton’s defense has major issues. Yes, they are without Mario Edwards, but he’s not the reason they’re getting pushed around and gashed on the back end.
17. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (1-1).
An outlier game. Blowouts aren’t indicative of much, unless they are a regular occurrence. All this game showed is that Tampa is not quite ready to roll with the big dogs. They could be by season’s end, but not now.
18. Detroit Lions (1-1).
Only the Lions find ways to lose games the way they did to Tennessee.
19. Philadelphia (2-0).
The Wentz hype train needs to sit in between stations for a while, like the Morris & Essex line does between Newark and Secaucus until the Eagles actually play an NFL team.
20. San Francisco 49ers (1-1).
How is this team averaging 27.5 points per game?
21. San Diego Chargers (1-1).
The Chargers seem to lose a guy for the season every week (and since Week 3 of the preseason, they actually HAVE), but managed to blow out the Jaguars like THAT? That speaks volumes about how Gus Bradley is not ready to be an NFL coach (12-38 record), more than the Bolts, who blew a lead to a team missing its best player on both sides of the ball.
22. St. Louis Rams (1-1).
We figured the Rams would be amped and ready to play against the team that they own (Seattle), but no one expected Seattle to look completely inept for an entire 60 minutes.
Then there’s this eternal gold nugget that occurred during that game: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X_iH4XatU3E
23. Dallas Cowboys (1-1).
Battle for the NFC East basement. The winner either way isn’t good.
24. Tennessee Titans (1-1).
The Titans still have a few holes to fill, but they were persistent enough to pull it off on the road in Detroit.
25. Miami Dolphins (0-2).
You knock “Jimmy G” out of the game and STILL lose?
26. New Orleans Saints (0-2).
The Saints still can’t score on the road. Now they are down both of their starting corners.
27. Indianapolis Colts (0-2).
Andrew Luck doesn’t have much in the name of an offensive line or defense, but he doesn’t escape blame — although many are determined to continue to give him passes. The entire organization is a joke from owner, general manager (personnel lacking) and execution on the field.
28. Jacksonville Jaguars (0-2).
Gus Bradley is squandering a ton of talent down in Jacksonville…
29. Washington Redskins (0-2).
Kirk Cousins has a chance to get off the 0-26 schneid in East Rutherford against the Giants. We cannot confirm, but almost certain the dissenter who is snaking Cousins to the media is Pierre Garçon. After seeing Garçon’s hissy fit on an end zone interception thrown by Cousins, it is not a far-off assumption.
Cousins has to find Garçon (and not the defenders covering him) if he expects to actually beat a winning team for once. Relying on Jordan Reed and a substandard running game (never mind the soft defense) hasn’t gotten it done for Washington thus far.
30. Buffalo Bills (0-2).
Rex Ryan is on a week-to-week watch in terms of his job status from this point. If the Bills lose to the Cardinals, he may not even get a chance to travel to New England and get embarrassed yet again.
31. Cleveland Browns (0-2).
The Browns aren’t ALL that bad. They’re very bad, but they have talent. It just doesn’t seem to ever be on the same page for more than a half during a game. At best. And this was the case in Week 2. A fantastic 1st half vs. Baltimore, before the bottom dropped out and the Browns blew a four score lead.
32. Chicago Bears (0-2).
What has John Fox gotten himself into. Mercy. Jay Cutler is Jay Cutler, that he has ridiculous turnovers, and is now injured, is no surprise. Danny Trevathan (who Foxy had before and recruited from Denver) is dealing with an injury, so is Lamarr Houston (out for season with an ACL), Eddie Goldman is out for a month, along with several other injuries. Of even more concern long-term, Kevin White looks slow. No one could run with him in college. He is noticeably two steps slower.