Lets have a look at the Statsational computer generated Power Rankings after Week 4 in the NFL
1. Houston Texans – 29.83 (-)
Once again no change at the top as the Texans took care of business. Outside of a late charge by Denver on the road this team has not been challenged. Their average margin of victory has been 17.5. I have them 1 in defense and 7 in offense. Impressive start for the Texans that looks to continue against a weak banged up Jet team this week.
2. Denver Broncos – 29.57 (+1)
They have surprised with their placement on this list all season. I thought playing a weak Oakland team would see them slide this week but they beat up on the Rainders so badly they were able to move up a spot. Denver’s #4 defense gets a test this week against the #2 offense in New England. Denver holds teams to 40 yards below their average in passing. New England averages 294 ypg passing.
3. San Francisco 49ers – 28.82 (+5)
The Niners are back to where we expected them to be. After a shocking loss to Minnesota the 49ers took care of the Jets quite handily. SF moves to 9th in offense and 2nd in defense. Alex Smith drops a bit to a 98.1 passer rating but he doesnt turn it over. Just one pick on the season. The NFC West is much stronger this year but SF is still the team to beat.
4. Atlanta Falcons – 28.14 (-2)
Atlanta wins, goes 4-0 and drops 2 spots. But that win was almost a loss after Carolina recovered their own fumble a yard short of what would have been a game ending first down. Atlanta is ranked 5th in offense and 8th in defense. Matt Ryan is now tops in passer rating at 112.1. He has 11 TD to just 2 Int. Atlanta has a tough matchup in Washington this week.
5. New England Patriots – 27.56 (+4)
After demolishing Buffalo the Pats move up 4 spots to 5 on the list. The offense is tops in the rankings now. 52 points will help that. The defense needs to improve now ranked 16th. There will be a shakeup at the top this week when they face Denver at home. A solid win should move them up the rankings.
6. Baltimore Ravens – 27.40 (-2)
Not a very impressive win on Thursday for the Ravens. Barely hanging on to beat the lowly Browns. Baltimore is still top in offense but 13th in defense. Flacco wants to be elite. I am not sure if he is elite or not but he has been solid completing 63.5% of his passes with 7 TDs to 3 picks. This week another slumping opponent in KC, 22nd ranked, is on the schedule. Baltimore averages 30.25 points per game and KC is giving up 34.
7. Arizona Cardinals – 24.46 (-2)
They just wont go away but they do drop 2 spots. A rather unimpressive win at home against Miami is the reason for the slide. Arizona’s 3rd ranked defense is keeping them in these games. They are holding teams to just 15.25 points per game. They have given up 344 more yards then they have gained. Very unusual for a 4-0 team. Perhaps that is a sign of things to come.
8. Chicago Bears – 24.43 (+7)
Big road win on Monday for the Bears over the Cowboys. The Bear offense is ranked slightly higher than its defense, 11 vs 12. Chicago is banking on their offense to finally break out. Thus far they are averaging 27 ppg, 3.5 points over the league average. Chicago will try and get the running game going against a weak run stopping Jaguar team. The Bears run it 20 yards less per game than their opponents give up.
9 Philadelphia Eagles – 24.39 (+3)
Philly held on to win against the Giants after a 54 yard FG by Tynes came up just short. The win helped move them up 3 spots. This was the first game the Eagles did not lose the turnover battle. In fact they did not turn it over at all. The talent offensively is there. 149 ypg rushing, 269 ypg passing but just 16.5 ppg. Next up 18th ranked Pittsburgh.
10. Green Bay Packers – 24.09 (-3)
They win but fall after just barely beating a winless team, the Saints. The Packers are not the offensive team we have been accustomed to. I have them as my 12th best passing team and 14th overall in offense. Rodgers had a 319 yard game against the Saints but who hasn’t. Another weak defense is on tap for the Packers when they face Indianapolis this week. Look for Rodgers and company can find a groove.
11. New York Giants – 23.85 (-)
The Giants stall at the 11th spot after a painful loss at Philly. Giant fans have gotten used to Eli pulling those games out late. Questionable play calls late and an odd decision to kick a 54 yarder with 15 seconds left led to the defeat. The Giants offense drops is 4th overall but remains number 1 throwing it. The 25th ranked Browns are next up.
12. Seattle Seahawks – 22.60 (-6)
Big slide for Seattle after losing to St. Louis. The Seahawks are a bad offensive team and that is killing them. They are ranked 26th in offense while the defense ranks 5th. Playing great defense will keep you in ball games but they will need to score more than 17.5 ppg to be a contender.
13. Dallas Cowboys – 22.55 (-3)
Dallas gets blown out at home on Monday night against Chicago. Down 17-7 going in for the score Romo turned it over for a TD the other way and then the route was on. Dallas has had its share of turnover issues and is now dead last in the NFC at -7 in give/take. They get the week off.
14. Minnesota Vikings – 22.11 (+4)
Minnesota picks up another win, this time against the Lions. The Vikings have performed better than most thought coming in to the season. Ponder continues to impress connecting on 68.3% of his passes while not throwing an interception. The Vikings play a weak Tennessee team. They could be looking at 4-1 and staying on top in the NFC North.
15. Miami Dolphins – 21.47 (-2)
Tough loss for the Dolphins as they looked to have Arizona beat. The loss drops them just two spots. Miami’s defense has not been great ranked just 21st. The big reason is their pass defense is giving up 61 more ypg than their opponents have averaged. To stay in the hunt they have to go into Cincinnati and beat a team they are ranked slightly better than.
16. Detroit Lions – 21.28 (+7)
After a loss the Lions still move up 7 spots. The main reason is perhaps those losses were not as bad as the computer once thought. Each team they played has moved up this week. The Lions have the week off but this could be an under valued team as the weeks go on. They will have to improve on their 27.75 ppg against though.
17. Cincinnati Bengals – 20.60 (+7)
A win over a bad Jacksonville team helps boost the Bengals 7 spots to 17. The Bengals record and their rankings do not match up. The computer has them barely being a .500 team right now. The Bengals are struggling stopping the run (133.5 ypg) and they play a Miami team that has been averaging 26 ypg more on the ground than opponents give up.
18. Pittsburgh Steelers – 20.59 (-2)
The Steelers drop 2 spots while off. The loss to Oakland looks worse and the computer has slid them down a tad. They have an opportunity to improve when they face a good Eagle team this week. The Steelers run game is non existent. They are averaging 65 ypg on the ground. It wont get easier as the Eagles have been giving up just 91 on the ground thus far.
19. St Louis Rams – 19.87 (+3)
Nice win for the Rams over Seattle last week. Fishers defense has improved and is now ranked 14th. The offense still leaves something to be desired ranked 25th. The offense will not have an easy go of it Thursday night when they face the Cardinals. The Rams have held opponents to 10 fewer ypg passing than they average and the Cards are averaging 45 fewer ypg passing than their opponents give up.
20. San Diego Chargers – 19.75 (-)
San Diego stays flat at 20 after soundly beating the Chiefs in KC. The win just proves San Diego can handle inferior opponents but they have not been able to hang with anyone good. Their only chance was Atlanta though. This week they face another bad team, on the road, the Saints. The Chargers defense is ranked high at 7 but the offense is a terrible 29th. The offense should get a boost playing a Saints team that gives up 7 more points than their opponents average.
21. Washington Redskins – 19.18 (+7)
One of the bigger movers of the week is the Redskins. Up 7 spots after holding off Tampa on the road. Washington ranks 6th overall in offense thanks in large part to their number 1 rushing offense. On the flip side the defense ranks 29 and is giving up a whopping 81 ypg more passing than opponents average. This week they face the Falcons who can throw it. The good thing is Atlanta hasn’t stopped the run giving up 146.25 ypg so far.
22. Kansas City Chiefs – 18.31 (-3)
The Chiefs got run over by the Chargers after shocking a lot of people and winning in New Orleans. But New Orleans has not beaten anyone yet and that is the Chiefs only win. Kansas City has rushed it well averaging 168 ypg on the ground. They face a defense that has been good against the run this week in Baltimore.
23. Carolina Panthers – 17.34 (+7)
Impressive in defeat were the Panthers. They had the Falcons all but beat. But nonetheless it is another loss. Like KC, the Panthers only win is against the winless Saints. The Panther rush defense has been bad giving up 45 more ypg than opponents average. Up next a team that can and will run it, the Seahawks.
24. New York Jets – 16.82 (-10)
Well at least they didn’t give up 40. That is about the best thing I can say for the Jets performance last week. And if not for a slide on the way to the endzone late, the game would have been 41-0. The Jets are banged up and they can not move the ball. They are ranked 28th in offense. The once great defense is now merely average at best ranked 20th. With Houston coming into NJ this week for MNF it could be ugly once again.
25. Cleveland Browns – 16.63 (+4)
The Browns really had a chance to beat Baltimore on the road if they had a receiver who could catch the ball. Far too many drops are hurting this team. Ranked 31st in offense the Browns go to the Giants to try and score enough points to hang with the 4th ranked offense. They were able to stay close with the top offense last week.
26. Buffalo Bills – 16.48 (-9)
Up 21-7 at Sunday things looked good but in a blink the Patriots put up 45 more points for 52 in all. The Bills defense is ranked 31st. They give up 32.75 points per game. This week they head out west to San Francisco. The 49ers give up just 15.25 ppg. One positive is the Bills have run it well averaging 158 ypg. SF has only given up 79.5 ypg on the ground however.
27. Indianapolis Colts – 16.14 (-2)
The Colts had the week off but slid two spots. The loss to Jacksonville is not helping the rankings as the Jags have not looked good. This week the Colts face a Packer team looking to get the offense going. This could be a bad matchup for the Colts who are not very good at stopping the pass ranked 29th in pass defense.
28. New Orleans Saints – 15.66 (+3)
Well they didn’t get their first win but they do move up the rankings a bit. This was the best the Saints have looked all year. Barely losing to the Packers on the road. The Saints have never been much of a defensive team but giving up 181 ypg on the ground is tough for any team to over come. San Diego has not been great rushing it and they are up next for the Saints. San Diego is rushing it 31 yards less than their opponents are giving up. I would feel good with SD running backs in this game.
29. Tampa Bay Buccaneers – 15.65 (-3)
After week 1 things looked so promising for the young Bucs but its been a downhill slide since then. Last week they lose a tight one to the Redskins and they are quickly falling out of any sort of playoff contention. The Bucs are off this week and they can use it to regroup.
30. Tennessee Titans – 15.17 (+2)
The Titans were not competitive against the Texans last week. The Titans average just 68.75 ypg running. Where is Chris Johnson? This week they face a Minnesota team that is 5th against the run in my rankings. I do not expect Tennessee to find the run game this week.
31. Jacksonville Jaguars – 15.06 (-10)
The Jaguars lose at home to a Bengals last week. The offense could never get things going putting up 212 total yards. That performance moves them to last in my offensive rankings. The Jags ranked 2nd worst in passing ahead of just Seattle. The Bears are up next and with the Bear offense starting to get better the Jags may have to find some offense quickly.
32. Oakland Raiders – 14.35 (-5)
Oakland is the new bottom team this week. They do have one win which is better than a few teams in the league but they have not been impressive. They are averaging 16.25 ppg while giving up 31.25 per game. This week they get a bye.