Welcome to the MMQB Week 2 Power Rankings! We are doing things a little differently this year. For years we have held the MMQB Power Rankings survey, where a panel of our writers and editors ranks each team from 1 to 32 and we calculate the points. (See our preseason survey here.) This year, we will be taking turns with the power rankings most weeks, and we will stop the survey at some key points of the season. My number was the first, so here I am with week 2.
Sure, what are you interested in? I know that no one is reading the introduction of a post on power charts. I could tell you that I spent my Sunday aboard an alien spaceship or that I have the latitude and longitude coordinates for a chest full of gold and jewels buried in the Montana desert and you would scroll through the past to see where I ranked. your favorite team.
1. Kansas City Chiefs (1-0)
Last week: win over Houston 34-20
Next week: to the Los Angeles Chargers
Honestly, I could have kept the Chiefs in first place even if they lost to Houston. They are so good. Obviously, they didn’t put me in a position to have to, reminding everyone exactly how good they are with a win on the opening night of the season.
2. New Orleans Saints (1-0)
Last week: victory over Tampa Bay 34-23
Next week: in Las Vegas (Monday)
This was one of the hardest decisions to make, choosing between New Orleans and Baltimore for second place. Eventually I went with the saints. Partly because I saw them for the second time this season and they didn’t do anything to deserve to be bumped. They also beat a better opponent in Tampa Bay than Baltimore in Cleveland.
3. Baltimore Ravens (1-0)
Last week: Win over Cleveland 38-6
Next week: in Houston
The Ravens went 14-2 last season but spent this offseason answering questions about their second consecutive playoff defeat. They are in the unenviable position of having to go through the entire regular season without being able to prove to their doubters they were wrong until the playoffs, but it was encouraging to see them pick up where they left off last regular season when they were beating teams.
4. Seattle Seahawks (1-0)
Last week: Win in Atlanta 38-25
Next week: against New England
I was very high with Seattle earlier in the year, picking Russell Wilson to win the MVP and giving them the honor of losing to the unstoppable Chiefs in the Super Bowl. Then I was slightly disappointed to see how popular they were the official forecasts of MMQB personnel. Turns out some of mine [smart] colleagues agree with me and we should all feel good after Wilson’s big 1 week.
5. Pittsburgh Steelers (1-0)
Last week: Win at the New York Giants 26-16
Next week: against Denver
This is such a fun defense to watch. They gave up on a couple of long drives against the Giants, but every few shots there were a handful of defenders in the backfield at one time or three guys waiting in the area for an intended pass. Ben Roethlisberger’s return lifts the team’s pitch considerably, but defense is what gives them a high roof.
6. Green Bay Packers (1-0)
Last week: Win at Minnesota 43-34
Next week: against Detroit
We are all familiar with the narrative surrounding Green Bay coming this season. They didn’t get the respect that a 13-3 team with a Hall of Fame quarterback would normally earn, but they clearly looked like a team of that caliber when they went to Minnesota this weekend. Some of the other NFC second tier teams have struggled in their openings and I have Green Bay as one of the big winners of the week.
7. New England Patriots (1-0)
Last week: win over Miami 21-11
Next week: in Seattle
It was a very encouraging debut for Cam Newton in New England. We’ve always wondered what it would be like when they moved on to the Tom Brady era and it’s no surprise that the coaching staff are able to build a pattern around their new star’s unique abilities. I can’t get over the fact that the Patriots are fun and I’m having fun. How did it happen?
8. Buffalo Bills (1-0)
Last week: win against New York Jets 27-17
Next week: in Miami
The weekly horse race between Bills and Patriots in AFC East has the potential to be a highlight of the season. The Bills took care of business against a listless team of Jets, with Josh Allen’s entire experience on display. I will give the Patriots a head start for this week, but for now they are hip related.
9. Los Angeles Rams (1-0)
Last week: win against Dallas 20-17
Next week: in Philadelphia
I liked what I saw since the Rams attack on Sunday night, even though they only came out with 20 points. I must also admit that I may have underestimated them this off-season. The great thing about our anonymous survey was that you didn’t know where I rated anyone. But I wanted to be honest with you, reader. While we all rightly focus on division games, the NFC has a large pool of teams fighting for those seven playoffs and the Rams’ win over Dallas could prove to be very important at the end of the season.
10. Arizona Cardinals (1-0)
Last week: Win in San Francisco 24-20
Next week: against Washington
The Cardinals were such a popular sleeper team this past spring and summer that I think they were almost post-hype when everyone made their actual predictions just before the season. Everyone will be back on the bandwagon now, as they should after one of the most impressive wins of week 1. You can’t overreact in week 1, but look at the NFC: The 49ers, Eagles, Cowboys, Vikings and Bucs all lost. With big vibes in Arizona this week, I’m putting them in the top 10!
11. Dallas Cowboys (0-1)
Last week: Los Angeles Rams 20-17 defeat
Next week: against Atlanta
Everyone walked out of Sunday night’s game talking about Michael Gallup’s OPI, but even before that game I thought it was remarkable how often Dak Prescott watched Amari Cooper, during the game and about their crucial push that wasn’t all. ‘height. He has more than double the targets of anyone else on the team, when I would have expected a little more balance. We all know this team has a lot of talent, but injuries in the first week are a real concern.
12. Tennessee Titans (1-0)
Last week: Denver 16-14 win
Next week: vs. Jacksonville
It’s hard to know what exactly to do with a game that obviously would have had more breathing room if Stephen Gostkowski hadn’t lost four kicks. But sometimes you just take the W and move on. The Titans may be happier on Tuesday morning than the seven teams right below them on this roster, who all started their seasons in the losing column.
13. San Francisco 49ers (0-1)
Last week: Defeat to Arizona 24-20
Next week: New York Jets
Losing a division game at home is never a good way to start the season, but especially in a very competitive NFC West where any of the four teams could win. To state the obvious, George Kittle’s injury is potentially very alarming. The receiving group is already slammed and is a great blocker in the racing game, which is what the Niners would rather do anyway.
14. Philadelphia Eagles (0-1)
Last week: defeat in Washington 27-17
Next week: against the Los Angeles Rams
The Eagles suffered one of the most disappointing losses of the first week given the combination of their pre-season expectations (specifically on this same site), their opponent and the size of the advantage they blasted. With four of the next five games against the Rams, 49ers, Steelers and Ravens, they will need to get back to health and / or figure things out with a patchwork offensive line, otherwise they may find themselves trying to dig out of a hole as they have lost the stretch. last season.
15. Minnesota Vikings (0-1)
Last week: loss to Green Bay 43-34
Next week: in Indianapolis
That loss was far worse than the final score shows. Aaron Rodgers set fire to many teams over the years, but I had more hopes for the Vikings’ defense. But Minnesota made history on Sunday, as Dalvin Cook and Adam Thielen became the first teammates to both have an octopus in the same match. (Listen, if you put me in charge of the power charts, this is the analysis you will get.)
16. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (0-1)
Last week: defeat in New Orleans 34-23
Next week: against Carolina
The Bucs have moved all-in to win this season with Tom Brady, and right now I find them perfectly in the middle of the pack. But of course you can minimize the defeat because they played the Saints. And you’d think Brady’s attack should improve as he and his teammates become more familiar with each other.
17. Houston Texans (0-1)
Last week: defeat in Kansas City 34-20
Next week: against Baltimore
I still think the Texans are able to have a really good season. It may not have felt like Thursday night, but I want to judge them against teams other than the Chiefs. Kansas City will make a lot of teams look overrated this year. However, as a result, I moved Houston a few places.
18. Atlanta Falcons (0-1)
Last week: lost to Seattle 38-25
Next week: in Dallas
I feel for Atlanta a lot like I feel for Houston. I think they stumbled upon a Russell Wilson circular saw and should look better against most other teams. Next week will obviously be another test for a team that has continued to struggle after a brutal start last year.
19. Indianapolis Colts (0-1)
Last week: defeat in Jacksonville 27-20
Next week: against Minnesota
I wasn’t as optimistic as some of my colleagues about the Philip Rivers experiment in Indy, but I was willing to keep an open mind. A disappointing defeat to Jacksonville is not a promising start for a team I already had outside the playoffs.
20. Los Angeles Chargers (1-0)
Last week: win in Cincinnati 16-13
Next week: against Kansas City
Wait, wait, wait, you’re telling me the shippers won a match on a basket that blew up at the end of the match? The Chargers fled Cincinnati with a win and now we’ll see if they’ve spent the entire summer preparing something special for Kansas City.
21. Las Vegas Raiders (1-0)
Last week: Carolina 34-30 win
Next week: v New Orleans (Monday)
The Raiders have held out for a win in Carolina, but this week looks like it will be the official start of the Las Vegas era, which will christen the new stadium against the Saints on Monday night. Of all the games that would be improved upon by the usual NFL sell-out crowds, this one would be at the top of the list. (That said, we pour one for Oakland fans whose team has moved.)
22. Denver Broncos (0-1)
Last week: Defeat to Tennessee 16-14
Next week: in Pittsburgh
I have the Chargers, Raiders and Broncos like total jolts to get to second place in AFC West. But for a week, at least, I will put the two teams that squeaked their victories against the lower tier teams in front of the team that (thanks to three missed baskets) brought a playoff contender to the edge.
23. Chicago Bears (1-0)
Last week: Detroit 27-23 win
Next week: against the New York Giants
Nick Foles’ narrative looking over Mitchell Trubisky’s shoulder is not even week to week, but half to half. But if Trubisky puts together a little more like in the second half against Detroit, he can reassure the skeptics for a little while.
24. Detroit Lions (0-1)
Last week: defeat to Chicago 27-23
Next week: in Green Bay
D’Andre Swift, friend. This is not how you imagine the first NFL game. But for some of his teammates who have been around the block and those poor fans, it must have felt woefully familiar and predictable to lose like that. Some people are optimistic about a Matthew Stafford-led turnaround under Matt Patricia, but they aren’t good enough to give away matches.
25. New York Giants (0-1)
Last week: defeat to Pittsburgh 26-16
Next week: in Chicago
The Giants were overwhelmed by the Steelers for much of Monday night (Saquon Barkley running 15 times for 6 yards gives you an idea) but I thought Daniel Jones showed some promising signs. There is a lot of talent in the league right now. I watch a lot of teens and twenties teams and I think they will be higher until I sit down and rank them. The same goes for individual players, actually:
26. Miami Dolphins (0-1)
Last week: defeat to New England 21-11
Next week: against Buffalo
There is some concern that the Dolphins who unexpectedly won five games last year may have recalibrated expectations for 2020 in an unrealistic way. Let us remember that they are still undergoing a major reconstruction project. Tua Tagovailoa is just the first of several prizes they hope to earn in the draft, and they shouldn’t bring him out just because some people think they can challenge for a 7 seed.
27. Washington (1-0)
Last week: win over Philadelphia 27-17
Next week: Arizona
The NFL’s most dysfunctional franchise ran into a memorably awkward offseason, but a first-week win was a surprising turnaround. The most important thing for the team this season is finding out what they have at Dwayne Haskins, and it looks like that rush to pass will give him a chance to win some games.
28. Jacksonville Jaguars (1-0)
Last week: win against Indianapolis 27-20
Next week: in Tennessee
Imagine not cheering for 2020 Jaguars. It couldn’t be me.
29. Cleveland Browns (0-1)
Last week: defeat in Baltimore 38-6
Next week: vs. Cincinnati (Thursday)
It was such a disaster against Baltimore, you now have to ask yourself if it’s good or bad that the Browns are back on the pitch on Thursday night. Now they will face a rookie quarterback in his first street game (who cares this year?) And in the first game of the short week (it looks like it would be). However, they will have to score more than six points.
30. New York Jets (0-1)
Last week: Defeat at Buffalo 27-17
Next week: against San Francisco
Adam Gase is in the hottest seat of any manager in the league, and that seems to unfold faster by the day. When a season starts with This so much negativity, how many times does it flip?
31. Carolina Panthers (0-1)
Last week: defeat to Las Vegas 34-30
Next week: in Tampa Bay
The era of Teddy Bridgewater is on, with 30 points in Week 1. But do him a favor and give Christian McCaffrey the ball in the fourth and 1 with the match in line.
32. Cincinnati Bengals (0-1)
Last week: Los Angeles Chargers 16-13 defeat
Next week: in Cleveland (Thursday)
Joe Burrow was dropped into a tough spot, starting week 1 not having gotten a breeze in a preseason game (no matter how hard his team tried to prepare him). But Bengal fans had to feel good about what they saw from him leading the team onto the pitch in what was almost a winning match (and should have been a winning match). This year it’s all about showing promise. I felt bad putting them last, but with Washington and Jacksonville earning victories, someone had to fall.