2017 NFL Power Rankings: Week 4

Week 3 of the 2017 NFL regular season might go down as one of the most memorable weekends the league has seen in quite some time, both on and off of the field. But this article pertains to the action that happened on the field, with some crazy results and some jumbling up in the rankings. Where did your team land heading into Week 4?

32. Cleveland Browns (0-3, Previous Ranking: 28)

Last Week: L, 31-28, at Colts
Next Week: vs. Bengals (0-3)

The Browns have a long way to go, but there is little question that DeShone Kizer, even with the mistakes, is the quarterback that the team has been searching for years. The defense struggled against the Colts, but they are working things out. Week 3 just had too many low points.

31. San Francisco 49ers (0-3, Previous Ranking: 29)

Last Week: L, 41-39, vs. Rams
Next Week: at Cardinals (1-2)

Who thought this offense would put up 39 points against a solid Rams defense? Brian Hoyer, even with his routine interceptions, made some solid throws and kept the 49ers alive. The defense is a work in progress but there certainly was much to be excited about.

30. Indianapolis Colts (1-2, Previous Ranking: 31)

Last Week: W, 31-28, vs. Browns
Next Week: at Seahawks (1-2)

To me, this game was all about Jacoby Brissett. For starters, he is a clear upgrade over Scott Tolzien. Secondly, he is looking increasingly comfortable being at the helm of this offense. The job is unquestionably Andrew Luck’s (whenever he is able to return), but Brissett is creating a name for himself in the league.

29. Cincinnati Bengals (0-3, Previous Ranking: 27)

Last Week: L, 27-24 (OT), at Packers
Next Week: at Browns (0-3)

When the Bengals jumped out and maintained a lead against the Packers in Green Bay, I was shocked. And then the Bengals turned into the Bengals and the offense stalled. Andy Dalton has his moments but continues to be a disappointment overall. If Dalton and the offense doesn’t improve, it’ll be a long season.

28. New York Jets (1-2, Previous Ranking: 32)

Last Week: W, 20-6, vs. Dolphins
Next Week: vs. Jaguars (2-1)

For a Jets team that many thought could go winless this season, this was a quality win against a division foe. The defense looked fantastic and gave Jay Cutler and the Dolphins absolutely nothing. Also, Jamal Adams is quietly putting together a season that should put him in contention for Defensive Rookie of the Year. He is the future of that defense.

27. Los Angeles Chargers (0-3, Previous Ranking: 24)

Last Week: L, 24-10, vs. Chiefs
Next Week: vs. Eagles (2-1)

The Chargers upcoming schedule is daunting: the Eagles, Giants, Raiders, Broncos, and Patriots, with three of those games on the road. The possibility of the Chargers starting the season 0-8 is not out of the question unless things start clicking, especially offensively.

26. New York Giants (0-3, Previous Ranking: 20)

Last Week: L, 27-24, at Eagles
Next Week: at Buccaneers (1-1)

To be completely honest, I’m not sure which team is the worst one in New York. The Giants have the talent but are not playing like it at all. The offensive line continues to struggle and without a 100% healthy Odell Beckham Jr., they won’t win many games this season.

25. Miami Dolphins (1-1, Previous Ranking: 15)

Last Week: L, 20-6, at Jets
Next Week: vs. Saints (1-2)

Woof. After luckily slipping by in Week 1, we saw the Dolphins flash potentially their true colors. A season after making the playoffs, this looks to be like a team that will struggle for most of the season. The Saints are an opportunity to them to prove themselves and if they can’t do that, don’t expect much this season.

24. Chicago Bears (1-2, Previous Ranking: 30)

Last Week: W, 23-17 (OT), vs. Steelers
Next Week: at Packers (2-1)

This is a Bears team that is better than some people might think. At home this season, they narrowly lost to the Falcons and pulled off an upset against the Steelers. The strengths of this team are easily their run game and their front seven, both of which played extremely well in Week 3. Mike Glennon is simply there to get the ball to Jordan Howard and Tarik Cohen.

23. Arizona Cardinals (1-2, Previous Ranking: 21)

Last Week: L, 28-17, vs. Cowboys
Next Week: vs. 49ers (0-3)

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: I think this will be the last season for Carson Palmer and Larry Fitzgerald. Fitzgerald looked solid at times last night, but this offense is anemic. Patrick Peterson is quietly putting together another elite season, but this is not the same team without David Johnson.

22. Houston Texans (1-2, Previous Ranking: 22)

Last Week: L, 36-33, at Patriots
Next Week: vs. Titans (2-1)

Sure they lost, but going into Foxboro and losing by 3 with a rookie quarterback is no small task. Deshaun Watson is improving each week and if he can play somewhat steady, he could help the Texans be competitive in a wide-open AFC South.

21. New Orleans Saints (1-2, Previous Ranking: 23)

Last Week: W, 34-13, at Panthers
Next Week: vs. Dolphins (1-1)

A stat that has stood out for the Saints this season? Drew Brees has thrown a single interception so far. Nor has the offense turned the ball over period. But the difference in Week 3 was the defense and their ability to look like a respectable NFL defense. Beating the Panthers is a critical win in the NFC South that is the Falcons and everyone else beneath them.

20. Carolina Panthers (2-1, Previous Ranking: 16)

Last Week: L, 34-13, vs. Saints
Next Week: at Patriots (2-1)

It feels like an eternity since Cam Newton had his magical 2015 season. Losing Greg Olsen hasn’t helped and Kelvin Benjamin could be hit and miss moving forward. A talented offense is only as good as their quarterback and right now, that isn’t very good. Neither is the defense.

19. Buffalo Bills (2-1, Previous Ranking: 25)

Last Week: W, 26-16, vs. Broncos
Next Week: at Falcons (3-0)

The Bills have been the quietest team in the NFL so far this season. After looking as if they had began rebuilding their team, the Bills have allowed only 37 points on defense this season, while Tyrod Taylor has been surprisingly effective this year. The Bills were a close game away from being undefeated and the win over the Broncos was one of the most subtle upsets of the weekend. They lack any true power but continue to get the job done.

18. Jacksonville Jaguars (2-1, Previous Ranking: 26)

Last Week: W, 44-7, vs. Ravens
Next Week: at Jets (1-2)

44-7? Who saw that coming? I said before Week 1 that this defense is young and talented, but they are playing like NFL veterans and are stopping everything that comes their way. If Blake Bortles can somewhat protect the football and the defense continue to shut down everyone, this team could surprise some people.

17. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (1-1, Previous Ranking: 12)

Last Week: L, 34-17, at Vikings
Next Week: vs. Giants (0-3)

Until Doug Martin returns, this team cannot afford poor performances from Jameis Winston. The Buccaneers are loaded with talent and they should put up some points on people. But the defense can’t allow quarterbacks like Case Keenum explode every single week if they want to have a chance this season.

16. Baltimore Ravens (2-1, Previous Ranking: 11)

Last Week: L, 44-7, vs. Jaguars
Next Week: vs. Steelers (2-1)

Sure, the defense allowed 44 points and 410 total yards. But at the end of the day, your quarterback can’t have 28 passing yards and a QBR of 0.8. Joe Flacco hasn’t been taking the same deep shots that he used to take, but I expect that to change soon. The Ravens need to rebound.

15. Los Angeles Rams (2-1, Previous Ranking: 19)

Last Week: W, 41-39, at 49ers
Next Week: at Cowboys (2-1)

This offense can be summed up in one word: exciting. This is not the same offense we saw a year ago, and that is thanks to a combination of the development of Jared Goff and the genius of Sean McVay. If the defense can figure things out with Wade Phillips new scheme, and this could be a dangerous team in the weak NFC West. I’m not 100% sold yet, however.

14. Seattle Seahawks (1-2, Previous Ranking: 7)

Last Week: L, 33-27, at Titans
Next Week: vs. Colts (1-2)

If the Seahawks offense can play the rest of the season like they did in the second half this weekend, and this could be the team we expected to see as a playoff threat. The defense was surprisingly the group that held this team back in Week 3. Whenever they can play as one team, they’ll be dangerous (even with a Swiss cheese offensive line).

13. Washington Redskins (2-1, Previous Ranking: 18)

Last Week: W, 27-10, vs. Raiders
Next Week: at Chiefs (3-0)

Finally. Kirk Cousins looked like Kirk Cousins. This was the definition of a statement win against a Raiders team that looked completely out of whack. The defense was stout. The offense looked strong. Oh, and Chris Thompson was a stud dual-threat running back. The NFC East is wide open and the Redskins could be poised to strike.

12. Minnesota Vikings (2-1, Previous Ranking: 17)

Last Week: W, 34-17, vs. Buccaneers
Next Week: vs. Lions (2-1)

After falling on the road, this was the type of big win the Vikings needed with their backup quarterback. Case Keenum was an unstoppable force and should make fans comfortable until Sam Bradford returns. The Vikings have looked much better on offense this year and the defense continues to be stingy. Big things could be in store for the Vikings.

11. Tennessee Titans (2-1, Previous Ranking: 14)

Last Week: W, 33-27, vs. Seahawks
Next Week: at Texans (1-2)

This was the type of win over a playoff caliber football team that the Titans needed to prove that they belong in the contender category. They finally flashed the strong, balanced offensive attack that we expected to see this season and Marcus Mariota, while not producing huge numbers, has done everything that he needs to do to get the job done.

10. Denver Broncos (2-1, Previous Ranking: 9)

Last Week: L, 26-16, at Bills
Next Week: vs. Raiders (2-1)

Unfortunately for the Broncos, they can’t play every single game at home. Are the Broncos a bad team? No. Are they a legitimate playoff contender? Yes. But just how good can this team be? Facing a top tier defense on the road is hard for any team, but might demonstrate the Broncos’ limitations.

9. Dallas Cowboys (2-1, Previous Ranking: 10)

Last Week: W, 28-17, at Cardinals
Next Week: vs. Rams (2-1)

The Cardinals are not the intimidating team that they used to be, but winning on the road in Arizona is no small task, especially for a team with questions like the Cowboys. The defense upped their game in Week 3, led by the stunning performance by Demarcus Lawrence. Three sacks in a single game is no joke.

8. Philadelphia Eagles (2-1, Previous Ranking: 13)

Last Week: W, 27-24, vs. Giants
Next Week: at Chargers (0-3)

The Giants are not good, but division rivalry games always bring out the best in teams. The Eagles did what they needed to do to come away with the win in dramatic fashion on a 61-yard field goal by rookie Jake Elliott. I seriously believe that the Eagles are the best team in the NFC East, or at least the most consistent. This is a team that can win the division but at worst should be a Wild Card team.

7. Pittsburgh Steelers (2-1, Previous Ranking: 4)

Last Week: L, 23-17 (OT), at Bears
Next Week: at Ravens (2-1)

This loss should be a surprise to no one. We have seen the Steelers drop these road games against inferior teams more than they should. But what is the most concerning is the lack of cohesion on offense. Until things start clicking, this team will be average at best. Luckily, we have seen this type of slow start in the past by the Steelers before they explode. Be patient.

6. Oakland Raiders (2-1, Previous Ranking: 3)

Last Week: L, 27-10, at Redskins
Next Week: at Broncos (2-1)

After being the most balanced offense through the first two weeks, this Raiders team took a clear step back in a rough game against the Redskins. They are still dangerous and are still the biggest threat to the Chiefs in the AFC West, but both sides of the ball need to work for them to have a shot (especially on defense).

5. Detroit Lions (2-1, Previous Ranking: 8)

Last Week: L, 30-26, vs. Falcons
Next Week: at Vikings (2-1)

I’m not a diehard Lions fan, but that finish was painful and disappointing. One play away from being undefeated. And against the Falcons? Look out, NFC. The Lions are quietly playing like one of the best teams in the league right now and while it is still early, they look like serious competition for the Packers and Falcons.

4. Green Bay Packers (2-1, Previous Ranking: 6)

Last Week: W, 27-24 (OT), vs. Bengals
Next Week: vs. Bears (1-2)

I was shocked to see the score of the Bengals-Packers game early on. And then reality set in and Aaron Rodgers took command of the game. Elite teams find ways to beat adversity and the Packers did just that against the Bengals. Rodgers is playing better than he normally does this early in the season, which is scary for the rest of the NFL come midseason.

3. New England Patriots (2-1, Previous Ranking: 5)

Last Week: W, 36-33, vs. Texans
Next Week: vs. Panthers (2-1)

Luckily for the Patriots, Tom Brady is still their starting quarterback or else the result of this game would’ve been different. TB12 is an all-time great, but this defense… not so much. Giving up 417 total yards to a rookie quarterback at home? Not what you want to do to instill confidence in your team.

2. Atlanta Falcons (3-0, Previous Ranking: 2)

Last Week: W, 30-26, at Lions
Next Week: vs. Bills (2-1)

It wasn’t a pretty win. It was actually pretty fluky. But a win is a win against a strong team and when you are sitting alone at the top of the NFC, that’s what matters. This game was on the road, so seeing the Falcons come in and compete and win an imperfect game speaks volumes to the caliber of this football team.

1. Kansas City Chiefs (3-0, Previous Ranking: 1)

Last Week: W, 24-10, at Chargers
Next Week: vs. Redskins (2-1)

There is little question in my mind: the Chiefs are the best team in the NFL right now. And it isn’t that close. Kareem Hunt should be the clear front runner for Offensive Rookie of the Year and Justin Houston is playing like a Defensive Player of the Year candidate. As long as Alex Smith plays efficient football and this offense keeps being a threat to break off a huge play at any moment, the Chiefs will keep winning.

Suggested articles from our sponsors