NFL Power Rankings

NFL Power Rankings heading into the fourth quarter of the 2021 season:

There are five weeks left in the NFL season and with the last four teams wrapping up bye weeks, this is as close to the three-quarter mark as we’ll get to. Therefore, it was time for me to go through all the numbers, watch some more film and rank all 32 teams against each other heading into the final stretch.

I think there’s a fairly clear top-five, which you could order a few different ways and a couple of teams with the potential to join that group. And similarly, there’s a group at the bottom, which consists of about the same amount of teams, that have practically – and one even technically – eliminated themselves from playoff contention – and their play also reflects that. The middle group is really what’s hard to figure out, because some of those teams look like contenders one week and then let us down the very next.

Still, this is the list I came up with in the end, not just purely ranking the teams based on record, but also taking recent form into account and where they should come in, as I evaluate them at this very moment. Let’s dive into it:

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There are five weeks left in the NFL season and with the last four teams wrapping up bye weeks, this is as close to the three-quarter mark as we’ll get to. Therefore, it was time for me to go through all the numbers, watch some more film and rank all 32 teams against each other heading into the final stretch.

I think there’s a fairly clear top-five, which you could order a few different ways and a couple of teams with the potential to join that group. And similarly, there’s a group at the bottom, which consists of about the same amount of teams, that have practically – and one even technically – eliminated themselves from playoff contention – and their play also reflects that. The middle group is really what’s hard to figure out, because some of those teams look like contenders one week and then let us down the very next.

Still, this is the list I came up with in the end, not just purely ranking the teams based on record, but also taking recent form into account and where they should come in, as I evaluate them at this very moment. Let’s dive into it:

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Power Rankings

NFL Power Rankings after the first quarter of the ’21 season:

As I always do after the first four games of a season, I wanted to rank all 32 teams once again. Unfortunately, with the 17th game added, it’s not exactly a quarter of the season anymore and we’ll have to see how that impacts teams down the road, who may otherwise have already pre-determined their outcome for the full year, but I think at this point we have a pretty good indication of where almost everybody stands.

The thing I want to make very clear here is that these are my personal rankings and I judge what I’ve seen on the field, rather than what the records say. So there may a couple of 2-2 teams over others at 3-1 for example, as I don’t want to be a prisoner of the moment.

So looking at this whole list, I wanted to quickly share my general thought on the individual teams, aided by a couple of key statistics, but I’m more than willing to discuss certain rankings, maybe in comparison to others, in the comments or on my social media outlets (links in the top bar).

Now let’s go through this list:

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NFL Power Rankings

Power Rankings ahead of the 2021 NFL season:

Just three weeks away from the season-opener between the Cowboys and Buccaneers, I once again ranked all 32 NFL teams and split them into six different tiers, from Super Bowl contenders to – how I liked to call it – tanking teams. Putting this list together, I considered talent on the roster, how all the pieces fit together, the level of coaching and I project these teams to develop until the new year.

Of course, these will change over the course of the season, as injuries become a bigger factor, players improve/regress and teams get into a certain rhythm. Therefore I’ll come back to it, at the latest, mid-way through the 2021 season and move these groups up or down the board accordingly.

Here’s my list:

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Power Rankings

Top 10 defenses in the NFL after ten weeks:

Scoring in the NFL is at an all-time high. There are so many young, exciting quarterbacks and we see passing records being broken every single week, especially with Tom Brady and Drew Brees going back and forth for the title as the all-time touchdown leader. However, the best teams in this league still play great defense. Some of them may have the individual talent while others do a better job of game-planning and putting their players in position to succeed, but when we talk about the really special units, that’s where both those things come together.

I want to look at the top ten defenses in the NFL as of right now, which of course is largely based on what they have done through ten weeks, but I try to put things into context in terms of who they have played and how some of the statistics or point totals came to be. And funnily enough, only the very last one on the list is below-.500, while eight of these teams have won at least six games.

Make sure to also check out my detailed recap of week ten!

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Power Rankings

The 10 best combinations of offensive and defensive lines for 2018:

The game of football has evolved over the last decade plus. Fullbacks have disappeared, wide receivers are getting paid big bucks, teams use a variety of guys in the backfield and everything is just so much more about getting your playmakers the ball in space. While all these things might be true and everybody knows the names of the superstars with the ball in their hands, to me there’s no doubt that the game is still won and lost in the trenches. If you can dictate the pace of the game and set the tone up front, you put yourself in a very good position to succeed. Therefore I wanted to take a look at which teams have the most dominants fronts on both sides of the ball. I expect about eight of these ten teams to make the playoffs in 2018.

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Power Rankings

Top 10 defenses of the 2017 NFL season:

It was really hard to compile this list, because of all the moving pieces, players being injured and just what these defenses have become as units. So the base I judge them on is the way they are constructed right now. Therefore, I couldn’t quite put the Seahawks and definitely not the Texans on this list, since they have suffered immensely with injuries to top of their three best defensive players. Sometimes the major statistics, like total yards allowed, can be misleading, for example, until a week ago, the Denver Broncos were the number one defense in terms of yardage allowed. Even though they still have an excellent trio of cornerbacks combined with Von Miller to rush the passer and they could easily bounce back big-time next season, that’s absurd, considering since after a hot start to the season at 3-1, they gave up an average of just over 30 points per game during an eight-game losing streak. The numbers I do care about are points allowed, takeaways, third down and red zone percentage allowed. Most importantly though, I want to look at the scheme each unit runs, how well they execute, and what my eyes tell me.

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NFL Power Rankings

Post-week Six NFL Power Rankings:

Now six weeks into the season we have a pretty good picture of all 32 NFL teams. Sure, you never know what will happen over the rest of the year, but I tried to rank them by the way they’ve played so far and factor in how they’ve improved since the season started or what they can still get better at. As of right now the list looks like this:

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Player Rankings

Top ten offensive players in the league outside of the O-line:

At this point of the season a lot of analysts like to rank their top players by position, as we have gotten a good impression of the top players in the league. I chose a different way, as I decided to rank my top ten offensive players in the league right now outside of the O-Line regardless of position. My criteria includes playmaking ability, consistency and health. By that I mean players who have been contributors for their teams for the majority of the season and in critical moments. At the top stands:

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