Hey, remember last week when I said we know nothing? Well, except how good the Chiefs are? This week really hammered that home. In fact, after this week, I don’t think there are those couple teams that can be considered elite or top dogs. Just a bunch of very good teams that we still need a couple of weeks to filter through.
I am fairly confident in two things only. One, everyone is going to have at least one nitpick with these rankings, and two, Russell Wilson pretends to be a human being much in the same way Mark Zuckerberg does. They are simply not from this planet.
Before we begin I want to put it out there once again that these are my rankings and if you disagree that is completely okay.
TIER 1- VERY GOOD
- Green Bay Packers – 2-1
- Philadelphia Eagles – 3-0
- Kansas City Chiefs – 2-1
- Miami Dolphins – 3-0
- Buffalo Bills – 2-1
- Los Angeles Rams – 2-1
- Baltimore Ravens – 2-1
I wasn’t kidding about there being a bit of a logjam at the top here. No one has really separated themselves from the others yet, and that was really evident when I sat down and tried to decide on a number one team. It was a different kind of challenge than the previous few weeks, where I felt the Bills and Chiefs were still far ahead of the pack. This week, no one stood above the rest. Just a sea of very good teams.
Ultimately I went with Green Bay. Defensively, they have one of the top units in the league, and offensively, they have started to step it up, especially with the emergence of Romeo Doubs, Their only competition was the city of brotherly love, Philly. Jalen Hurts, A.J. Brown, Skinny Batman. A stout offensive line. A ferocious defensive line. These Eagles really have it all. The lack of a huge win ultimately has them here at two, but I’m not sure how long the rest of the league will be able to hold them off.
Looking down the list, Kansas City and Buffalo each moved down. Both teams looked uninspired, made bad decisions, and fell in the last moments of the game. These are still two of a handful of teams that you believe will win every game, and I fully expect both to be up here for the whole season.
The reason for Buffalo’s drop can be attributed to the team one spot ahead of them, the Miami Dolphins. I am almost ready to be a Tua Tagovailoa apologist. He has beaten three quality teams in three weeks. Shook off a, uh, “back” injury to come back in and beat the Bills. (Definitely, no concussion here, keep walking. Concussion protocol was absolutely followed. Why do you ask?) Tyreek Hill and Jaylen Waddle have been superb, and the defence stepped up big against Diggs and the Bills. (Also sidenote on the Bills, Allen finally got called for the unsportsmanlike penalties he commits after he’s tackled every week. Always happens. Nice to see the refs call it, even though it didn’t end up mattering.) The Dolphins are the only undefeated team in the AFC which I really don’t think was on anyone’s bingo card to start the year. I have to move on or I’m going to talk myself into moving them up just for them to get smoked on Thursday night in Cincy.
We wrap up this tier with the Rams and Ravens who have been fairly impressive. Stafford looks like he can throw again, Lamar Jackson does Lamar Jackson things. It’s pretty simple, these two could beat anyone below them and I wouldn’t be shocked. Cooper Kupp is an animal.
TIER 2- JUST GOOD
- Tampa Bay Buccaneers – 2-1
- Jacksonville Jaguars – 2-1
- Los Angeles Chargers – 1-2
- Dallas Cowboys – 2-1
- New York Giants – 2-1
The Bucs aren’t good right now. Their defence is good, keeps them in games and gives them chances. They are one of the worst teams in the red zone, and have only scored four touchdowns on the year. Last place has three. (The $240 million dollar man of course. Let’s ride!) Tom Brady got a warning sent to all 32 teams because he breaks tablets like Jimmy Garoppolo breaking hearts. It’s just not good right now. Yet, they are 2-1, at the top of their division and pretty much a shoo-in for the playoffs. Obviously, I don’t want to throw around the “D” word with Brady, because history shows us that is a bad idea, so I will us it in an abbreviated sense: Brady is done being an elite guy at the quarterback spot. There’s a good five or six I’d rather have as it stands right now. Now I know I’ll look silly when they are in the NFC Championship game in January, but oh well, I’m taking a stand here.
We also have two pairs of teams that just played. Trevor Lawrence is for real, and the Chargers might not be. They got stomped. They are very injured in fairness, however, I think Jacksonville might just be the better team. I’m confident they take the division now. That might seem like a week three overreaction, but I truly don’t believe in the Chargers as everybody else does.
Lastly, I have thrown in the Dallas Cowbots and the New York Giants Giants here. Carson Wentz’s doppelganger is killing it in Dallas, and if you squint really hard, Daniel Jones looks like Josh Allen when he runs, which has to be a win. Both of these teams could contend for the playoffs, or win six games, and I wouldn’t be totally surprised either way.
TIER 3- GOODISH
- Minnesota Vikings – 2-1
- Detroit Lions – 1-2
- Arizona Cardinals – 1-2
The end of the Minnesota/Detroit was classic from both sides. Detroit loses a heartbreaking close game, and Cousins throws check downs the whole game, and then one throw over 20 yards and wins the game. You just can’t write it. Overall, I would say both of these teams are decent playoff threats, especially getting to play Chicago twice. Arizona is just kind of there. Kyler Murray doesn’t look great outside of a half against the Raiders, the roster isn’t great. I don’t really expect them this high much longer.
TIER 4- ONE FOOT OUT OF THE GRAVE
- Cincinnati Bengals – 1-2
- Tennessee Titans – 1-2
- New England Patriots – 1-2
- New Orleans Saints – 1-2
Life. A little bit of life, but still life. Cincy and Tennessee both looked dead in the water to start the season, but a big week three win keeps them from being dead. Meanwhile, the Patriots and Saints are trending the opposite direction. Mac Jones looks like he’s done for six to eight weeks, which could be a blessing the way he’s been playing. Jameis Winston just isn’t performing how he can. It’s not even fun Winston where he could throw two touchdowns and three interceptions but you felt like you had a good time. It’s just sad to watch. I miss Sean Payton.
TIER 5- JACOBY BRISSETT SEASON
- Cleveland Browns – 2-1
Jacoby is energy. He’s bringing it for the Browns. Nick Chubb and Kareem Hunt are probably the best running back combo in the league. I like Cleveland. It’ll be interesting if Cleveland is like 7-3 or so when Deshaun Watson is set to come back. You almost have to wonder, do you run with Brissett? They’d be crazy too. Unless…
TIER 6- MATT RYAN IS FINALLY SHOWING UP
- Indianapolis Colts – 1-1-1
Hey, Matt Ryan can still sling it. Indy got themselves a big win on Sunday. A huge win. But you have to rid the stench of the Houston tie and the Jags shutout with more than one win.
TIER 7- DEAD
- Las Vegas Raiders – 0-3
- Denver Broncos – 2-1
- San Francisco 49ers – 1-2
- Pittsburgh Steelers – 1-2
The best 0-3 team in history. The Raiders have lost three close games, all to opponents who who were either playoff teams last year, or crowned Super Bowl champs before this year even started. Is it blasphemous to have them ahead of the Broncos? Maybe. Anyone who watched the game between the Broncos and Niners on Sunday night might agree with me. Russell Wilson is awful and the defense keeps allowing them to get away with it. Not going to work all season.
TIER 8- BAD BUT FUNNY
- Atlanta Falcons – 1-2
- New York Jets – 1-2
- Washington Commanders – 1-2
Falcons are frisky. The Jets are about to get Zach Wilson back, which is a good thing for Joe Flacco’s shoulder. They have this man throwing over 50 passes a game. Unreal. Washington is going through the love-hate with Wentz right now, pining for Jimmy G. (Which is sad.) Fun teams for the most part though.
TIER 9- AWFUL
- Seattle Seahawks 1-2
- Chicago Bears 2-1
I refuse to put Chicago any higher than this. They would have been good back when the forward pass was outlawed. That’s it. Justin Fields makes Johnny Manziel look like prime freaking Peyton Manning. They’re awful. Khalil Herbert is pretty fun though and definitely suits the Bears a bit better than David Montgomery does. Seattle isn’t good, Geno Smith isn’t bad until he is. He channels 2019 era Jameis Winston three times a game and it’s really a beautiful thing to watch. Pete Carroll probably needs to retire. I hear the Nebraska job is open.
TIER 10- WORSE THAN BAMA
- Carolina Panthers- 1-2
- Houston Texans- 0-1-1
Baker sucks and Houston lost to Chicago. CHICAGO. Good grief. Mills Mafia though baby don’t get me wrong.
See everyone next week. I’m sure all my takes will age beautifully as they always do.
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