NFL Week 8 Power Rankings

By Josh Shippen, Reporter

1. Arizona Cardinals (7-0)

The Cardinals have made it all the way to week eight without taking a loss, and their contest against the Packers will be a statement win if they can pull it off, which I believe they are fully capable of doing. The Cardinals have officially made the strongest case of any NFL team to be in the Super Bowl this year.

2. Dallas Cowboys (5-1) +1

There are few better quarterbacks than Dak Prescott, few running back tandems better than Ezekiel Elliott and Tony Pollard, and seldom wide receiver groups that can compete with Amari Cooper, CeeDee Lamb and Michael Gallup. I would also keep an eye out for tight end Dalton Schultz, who is having an amazing season.

3. Los Angeles Rams (6-1) -1

The Rams still have a little ways to go before they can beat a powerhouse like the Cardinals or Cowboys, but they are well on their way to becoming the second seed in the NFC, and their team looks legit. I guess the Matthew Stafford trade really was a front office masterpiece for the Rams, and a total embarrassment for the Lions.

4. Green Bay Packers (6-1) +2

I would worry about an underwhelming Packers effort as they enter Thursday Night Football without Davante Adams and Allen Lazard, two of Aaron Rodgers’ favorite weapons, but missing Lazard and Adams does not negate the fact that the Packers are far and away one of the best teams in the NFL.

5. Cincinnati Bengals (5-2) +4

I can finally say it, the Bengals are legit. The offensive line has finally stopped creating craters that defensive bulls can rip through and decimate Joe Burrow. No team has come quite as far as they have since their disappointing 2020 season where Burrow suffered a gruesome injury and the Bengals had a lost season.

6. Tennessee Titans (5-2) +5

I know the Chiefs are playing poorly, but give credit to Ryan Tannehill and the Titans for holding the once best offense in the NFL to a field goal and beating them by 24 points. After a slow start, the Titans are clearly looking to contend in this tough AFC race.

7. Baltimore Ravens (5-2) -3

Baltimore’s success streak was halted against the Cincinnati Bengals who brought everything they had to beat Baltimore 41-17. After a much needed bye week to regroup, the Ravens will be properly prepared to beat the Minnesota Vikings

8. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (6-1) 

I’m sure every team would like to have as deep of a roster as the Bucs who seemingly cannot be affected by injuries. Tampa has been a high scoring team with a tough defense even if it does have a beat up secondary, and I would trust them to at least keep it close with a matchup with any other NFL team.

9. Buffalo Bills (4-2) -4

Are the Bills getting a little too much hype? After a few weeks of people on Twitter carrying the Bills as their patron sons on their back and singing Super Bowl praises, the mighty Bills fell to the Titans and looked like a shell of their former self against a better opponent. Perhaps matchups against the Dolphins and Texans will make people believe you are a Super Bowl contender, but their easy matchup with the Dolphins will get the Bills up to 5-2. 

10. Los Angeles Chargers (4-2) -3

The Chargers have had one of the best offensive performances in the league followed by an absolute offensive disappointment that left everyone scratching their heads about what was to come for the Chargers. A matchup with the Patriots will prove whether their offensive greatness was a fluke, or whether Justin Herbert can lead the charge to the AFC Championship.

11. Las Vegas Raiders (5-2) +1

The loss of head coach Jon Gruden does not seem to have affected the Raiders in as big of a way that most thought it would, although it should be acknowledged that any offense should have a heyday against the Eagles’ defense.

12. Cleveland Browns (4-3) +1

A statement win for a coach is rolling into a game against the Denver Broncos without the four players most vital to offensive success in Baker Mayfield, Nick Chubb, Kareem Hunt and Jack Conklin and still pulling away with the victory. Kevin Stefanski was the correct choice for this team, and I expect the Browns to go far this year.

13. Indianapolis Colts (3-4) +8

I think the Colts finally deserve some credit for playing better than their record. Their matchup against the 49ers showed the first signs of life for the Colts defense, and despite three dropped interceptions by the 49ers defense, Carson Wentz and the Colts offense played exceedingly well.

14. Atlanta Falcons (3-3) +8

The Falcons are officially in the playoff race after a three game win streak following a disappointing 0-3 start with bad offensive and defensive play. Especially with the recent failures of the Carolina Panthers and the boring nature of the New Orleans Saints, the Falcons have an increasing likelihood to be in the NFC South race.

15. New England Patriots (3-4) +3

The Patriots have a surprisingly high powered offense following their early season slump with rookie quarterback Mac Jones, and if they can hold back the Chargers on Sunday they could be in good position to be back in the race in the AFC.

16. New Orleans Saints (4-2)

There is perhaps no more boring team than the New Orleans Saints, and their aggressively mediocre team will land them at the 16th spot until any argument otherwise can disprove this position.

17. Pittsburgh Steelers (3-3) +2

It is time to start worrying about the Steelers depth at quarterback. Ben Roethlisberger is sure to be done after this year, and Mason Rudolph has proved that he is nowhere near starting caliber in the NFL. Expect the Steelers to continue losing close games  as the season progresses.

18. Kansas City Chiefs (3-4) -8

If the Chiefs were to collapse against the New York Giants on Monday Night Football then I will be officially done with the Chiefs, but for now I still believe that Patrick Mahomes and the remnants of a great offense can pave the way for a late season comeback.

19. San Francisco 49ers (2-4) -2

After a 2-0 start, injuries and a hard schedule coupled with inconsistent quarterback play have caused the 49ers to lose four in a row and earn the third spot in the NFC East. Even though their coaching and roster talent should be enough to get them a better record, their early struggles have all but taken them out of contention.

20. Minnesota Vikings (3-3) -5

The Vikings’ roster is loaded with talent, and late season success would propel them to a Wild Card spot. Unfortunately, Kirk Cousins’ failings in primetime would likely result in their downfall. The Vikings should be in the market for a quarterback for next season.

21. Philadelphia Eagles (2-5) +2

The Eagles could keep up in offensive contention with most NFL teams, but their defense is bad enough to single handedly lose a game against any team better than the Jacksonville Jaguars.

22. Washington Football Team (2-5) +3

Taylor Heinicke’s steady decline is finally taking form as Heinicke fails to move this offense with the same level of efficiency and skill than was present in the late playoff game and in the early part of the season.

23. Denver Broncos (3-4) +1

The Browns were missing their four most important offensive starters, and yet the Broncos still fell on Thursday Night Football in a game that effectively takes them out of contention, especially with the competitiveness of their remaining schedule.

24. Carolina Panthers (3-4) -4

It’s official, Sam Darnold is not a good quarterback. Horrible throws and other bad decisions are resulting in the Panthers being one of the worst offensive teams in the NFL. People say that defense wins championships, but offenses this bad negate anything that a defense can do.

25. Chicago Bears (3-4) -11

After two straight weeks of improving play from Justin Fields, the Bears were only able to muster a field goal against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers defense on Sunday. This continuous inconsistency will likely be the downfall of the Bears who are hanging on by a thread.

26. New York Giants (2-5) +4

The Giants may have decisively knocked off the Carolina Panthers, but until they start showing even a base level of consistency there is nothing to be excited about with this highly underperforming roster.

27. Seattle Seahawks (2-5) -1

One Name: Geno Smith. Smith’s inability to move the ball down the field and crushing fourth quarter mistakes in every single game are the reason for the Seahawks’ inability to win any of their past three games.

28. Jacksonville Jaguars (1-5) -1

A late season surge from the Jaguars would not be surprising as their team starts to take form, and a win against the failing Seahawks will be exactly what the Jaguars need to get themselves out of the last place in the AFC South.

29. Miami Dolphins (1-6) +2

The Dolphins may not have a good record, but with quarterback Tua Tagovailoa back in the starting lineup there is finally something to be excited about in the starting lineup. Expect the Dolphins to win at least four more games as their season progresses.

30. Houston Texans (1-6) +1

Even if the Texans get Tyrod Taylor they are far too deep in their own failures to be considered a serious AFC threat. This could however convince the rest of the NFL that they are not among the bottom five teams in the NFL.

31. Detroit Lions (0-7) +1

In many ways, the Lions are the inverse Ravens. There is no data to show that the Lions have any ability to close out games. This slow offense and dirt poor defense are likely going to kill both Dan Campbell’s and Jared Goff’s career.

32. New York Jets (1-5) -5

The Jets have more roster talent than the Lions, but their rookie quarterback is injured and is leaving a quarterback room featuring Mike White, Joe Flacco and Josh Johnson in its place. This quarterback room would have been absolutely fine in 2016.

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