Week 1 of the NFL season always creates over-exaggeration and that’s to be expected. One game has been played, that’s it. The fans and media alike who have been hungry for football for over seven months finally get some regular season action and needless to say the disection and analysis of that one week is over the top.
That’s what is good about week 2. With that second game in the books for each team, you start to get a clear definition of each team. This year there are six 2-0 teams, 20 1-1 teams (a league record) and six 0-2 teams. After watching two weeks of football, I can honestly say that this may be the best year of football being played across the league in nearly a decade.
There’s a couple very good teams that are a little ahead of everyone else, a host of solid teams and only a few below average squads. With the exception of maybe a team like the Titans or the Raiders right now, there’s a lot of good football being played. The league is very competitive and extremely balanced.
That’s a great thing for the NFL and its fans who should be looking extremely forward to week 3.
1. San Francisco (2-0) – This team is for real. One of the strongest defenses put on the field in the last five years.
2. Houston (2-0) – The Texans haven’t even started playing well on offense and they’re still crushing teams.
3. Atlanta (2-0) – Can’t help but be impressed with the way Matt Ryan is playing right now. The Falcons will go far if his numbers stay steady.
4. Green Bay (1-1) – If that defense plays as solidly as it did against the Bears, Thursday, watch out.
5. Baltimore (1-1) – If the replacement refs don’t make that ridiculous call to bring back a touchdown, the Ravens are 2-0 and no one is really concerned. No one in Baltimore should be worried.
6. San Diego (2-0) – While their opponents haven’t been the toughest to begin, the Chargers defense has been the league’s best and that’s a huge improvement from the past few seasons. Oh and this just in, Philip Rivers is good.
7. Arizona (2-0) – Even without a clear front runner at QB, this team is capable of beating the majority of the rest of the NFL just with its defense and efficient offense.
8. Philadelphia (2-0) – For now the Eagles sit here as an undefeated football team but don’t be surprised to see them drop like a rock when their luck starts to run out.
9. Seattle (1-1) – I’m still not sure why this team is settling for the inexperienced play of a rookie at QB when it has the potential for much better on its bench, but this is a team capable of winning the old school way despite whatever they get from the QB — defensively beating teams up, elite special teams play and pounding the ball on the ground.
10. Chicago (1-1) – Don’t you dare sleep on the Bears after one tough loss at Lambeau. This team is legit.
11. Dallas (1-1) – Sure they got manhandled in Seattle and sure that looks like the typical Cowboys, losing after a big win. Seattle is for real though, they’re going to be manhandling a ton of teams this season. The Cowboys will be fine.
12. New England (1-1) – The Patriots are in trouble and I’ve been saying that for awhile to anybody who would listen. Zero pass d and a weak offensive line, if you put any kind of pressure on Brady, his play suffers.
13. Denver (1-1) – I think we saw more of the real Manning and the Broncos Monday night. This isn’t a Super Bowl team and maybe not even a playoff team. A lot of work still needed.
14. Pittsburgh (1-1) – The Steelers look OK right now. They lost to a decent Denver team wk 1 and theni beat a bad Jets squad wk 2. Big deal.
15. New York Giants (1-1) – They should be lower, really but one thing keeps this team in playoff contention — Eli Manning.
16. Detroit (1-1) – Matthew Stafford looks pretty rusty yet this team still beat a solid Rams squad and played the best team in the league tightly. Once he gets going, watch out.
17. Buffalo (1-1) – CJ Spiller suddenly looks like the real deal. Need to see some better play from the front 7 still.
18. Washington (1-1) – The loss of Brian Orakpo should be more cause for concern in the capital than the loss to the Rams.
19. Tampa Bay (1-1) – That was a tough loss to the Giants. I’m pretty sure that 510-yard passing game from Manning was a lot more Manning than it was the Bucs secondary.
20. Carolina (1-1) – A nice bounce back win for the Panthers, time to keep it up in a critical early season test against the Giants.
21. Cincinnati (1-1) – I thought this team would be a lot better than what it is showing so far. Their secondary needs work.
22. St. Louis (1-1) – A perfect example of a much stronger NFL. This team plays ferocious. Nobody is walking into St. Louis and coming out with an easy win anymore. Good for Sam Bradford.
23. Miami (1-1) – The Dolphins certainly looked a lot better wk 2 facing a team other than the Texans. Reggie Bush may just have finally realized his potential.
24. New York Jets (1-1) – The Jets are an enigma. Just not a very good one.
25. Kansas City (0-2) – Two tough games to open the season and it doesn’t really stop with a trip to the equally desperate Saints. I think we start to see the real Chiefs this weekend.
26. Indianapolis (1-1) – Good for Andrew Luck bouncing back and picking up his first win. I just hope he doesn’t start expecting that this season.
27. New Orleans (0-2) – Sure the Saints are missing a couple players and their head coach, but their problems go deeper than that. Even last year I thought this team wasn’t that good. In the year since, the league has improved while they have gotten worse, it’s going to be a tough year on the Bayou.
28. Minnesota (1-1) – They haven’t played anybody yet, but Christian Ponder’s 110 passer rating is still very encouraging.
29. Cleveland (0-2) – If their offense performs like it did in wk 2, they’ll be a tough team this season. Just don’t want to see that wk 1 performance again.
30. Jacksonville (0-2) – Sure they’re winless, but they barely lost at Minnesota and got beat up by an excellent Houston team.
31. Oakland (0-2) – I really don’t think the Raiders are as bad as they looked in wk 2 but unfortunately for them, there just aren’t many teams playing poorly right now.
32. Tennessee (0-2) – The offensive line better get itself together because this team isn’t going to win many games if Chris Johnson isn’t productive.