Consistency has finally arrived to the NFL season, as no teams shifted their position in the Power Rankings by double digits for the first time this season. With impressive road wins, the 7-2 Saints and Vikings have established themselves as true contenders, while the Cowboys saw the biggest fall of the week as they were blown out at Atlanta without Tyron Smith and Ezekiel Elliott. Looking ahead to Week 11, there will be a number of games between top teams, with the Titans taking on the Steelers Thursday night, the Rams playing the Vikings, the Eagles facing the Cowboys and the Falcons traveling to Seattle to play the Seahawks on Monday night.
1. Philadelphia Eagles (8-1, 1st NFC East): Last week: 1
2. Los Angeles Rams (7-2, 1st NFC West): Last week: 2
After a 33-7 demolition of a reeling Texans team, the Rams continued their surprising run of success. First-year head coach Sean McVay is the front-runner for Coach of the Year, while Jared Goff, who threw for 355 yards and three touchdowns against the Texans, is a dark-horse MVP candidate.
3. New England Patriots (7-2, 1st AFC East): Last week: 4
We may have been witness to the end of the great Broncos-Patriots rivalry of recent years on Sunday night, as the Pats demolished the hapless Broncos 41-16 at Mile High. New England has quietly won five in a row, and face just two teams with a winning record the rest of the way.
4. Pittsburgh Steelers (7-2, 1st AFC North): Last week: 3
A late rally was needed in the Steelers 20-17 road win over the Colts, a squad that should have been a pushover for a Pittsburgh team with considerable talent. In his age-35 season, it seems like the years of big hits have taken their toll on Ben Roethlisberger, whose season passer rating of 83.8 is nearly ten points below his career average.
5. New Orleans Saints (7-2, 1st NFC South): Last week: 8
The Saints have won seven games in a row, and added a quality win to their resume with a 47-10 blowout of the Bills in Buffalo. In very un-Saints fashion, Drew Brees took a backseat to the running game, as Mark Ingram and Alvin Kamara rushed for 131 and 106 yards respectively and the team scored six times on the ground.
6. Minnesota Vikings (7-2, 1st NFC North): Last week: 5
Minnesota outlasted the Redskins in a 38-30 shootout in Washington, as the Vikings have cemented their status as the team to beat in the NFC North. Teddy Bridgewater made his emotional comeback to the NFL, and while he didn’t play, it was great to see the quarterback in uniform again.
7. Kansas City Chiefs (6-3 1st AFC West): Last week: 7
8. Carolina Panthers (7-3, 2nd NFC South): Last week: 10
After struggling for much of the 2017 season, the Panthers offense came alive in a 45-21 victory over the Dolphins. Cam Newton threw for 254 yards and four touchdowns without turning it over, and rushed five times for 95 yards to boot. The NFC South race will be tight, and the Panthers still have crucial games against New Orleans, Tampa Bay and Atlanta left.
9. Jacksonville Jaguars (6-3, T-1st AFC South): Last week: 9
Escaping with an overtime win over a subtly dangerous Chargers team at home, some of the Jaguars’ flaws were exposed. Leonard Fournette was stymied, as the Chargers forced Blake Bortles to beat them. The embattled signal-caller threw 51 passes and turned it over twice, but did just enough to get the W.
10. Seattle Seahawks (6-3, 2nd NFC North): Last week: 12
Despite having a solid record, the Seahawks have been unimpressive in 2017, and beat a Carson Palmer-less Cardinals team by just eight points on Thursday Night Football. The 22-16 win came at a price, however, as star corner Richard Sherman was lost for the season to a ruptured Achilles.
11. Tennessee Titans (6-3, T-1st AFC South): Last week: 13
Another unconvincing team with a strong record, the Titans scraped out a win at home over a weak Bengals squad 24-20. However, the Titans schedule is easy the rest of the way as well, and Marcus Mariota and Co. should find themselves playing postseason football.
12. Atlanta Falcons (5-4, 3rd NFC South): Last week: 16
With all of the talk about the downfall of the Falcons, they are still in the playoff hunt. Their 27-7 victory over the Cowboys was impressive even when considering Dallas was without Ezekiel Elliott. Adrian Clayborn was a one-man wrecking crew, sacking Dak Prescott six times by himself.
13. Detroit Lions (5-4, T-2nd NFC North): Last week: 14
While the winless Browns scored a decent amount of points in the Lions 38-24 home win, Detroit still has strong playoff aspirations. Facing the Ravens, Bucs, Bengals and the Bears twice the rest of the way could mean a second-straight playoff berth.
14. Washington Redskins (4-5, 3rd NFC East): Last week: 11
Kirk Cousins is going to need some help if the Redskins want to get back to the playoffs. With Robert Kelley injured, Samaje Perine was held to 35 yards in the loss to the Vikings, while the receiving corps really needs to step up; running back Chris Thompson is leading the team in receiving yards.
15. Dallas Cowboys (5-4, 2nd NFC East): Last week: 6
The reinstatement of Ezekiel Elliott’s suspension clearly affected the Cowboys as they were dominated by the Falcons in the Georgia Dome. However, the injury of Tyron Smith seemed to have a bigger impact, as Dak Prescott was sacked eight times.
16. Oakland Raiders (4-5, 2nd AFC West): Last week: 17
17. Los Angeles Chargers (3-6, T-3rd AFC West): Last week: 19
An Austin Ekeler fumble away from beating a good Jaguars team on the road, the Chargers seem to have had bad luck for years now. In their six losses, two were by more than one possession, and those came against the Patriots and Chiefs.
18. Green Bay Packers (5-4, T-2nd NFC North): Last week: 23
Brett Hundley got his first win as a starter as the Pack topped the Bears 23-16 on the road. However, both Aaron Jones and Ty Montgomery will be missing time due to injury going forward, which could put additional pressure on the arm of their young signal-caller.
19. Baltimore Ravens (4-5, 2nd AFC North): Last week: 21
20. Buffalo Bills (5-4, 2nd AFC East): Last week: 15
After a hot start to the season, the Bills are reeling. Tyrod Taylor completed nine of 18 passes for just 56 yards and a pick against a Saints defense not particularly known for its secondary, and was benched for rookie fifth-rounder Nathan Peterman. The Bills have indicated that Peterman will likely be the starter going forward.
21. Arizona Cardinals (4-5, 3rd NFC West): Last week: 20
Adrian Peterson seems to be the Cardinals’ X-factor since coming over in a midseason trade. In his four games in a Cardinals uniform, he has rushed for single-game totals of 134, 21, 154 and 29 yards, and it isn’t hard to guess which of those games Arizona emerged with the victory.
22. Miami Dolphins (4-5, 3rd AFC South): Last week: 22
The owners of the league’s 4th-worst point differential despite being nearly .500, the Dolphins are not as good as their record would indicate. Fantasy owners were quick to target Damien Williams and Kenyan Drake after Miami traded Jay Ajayi, and while Drake had a 66 yard touchdown run, neither back showed any signs of relevance.
23. Cincinnati Bengals (3-6, 3rd AFC North): Last week: 27
The Bengals played the Titans tight on the road, narrowly missing out on a win. However, Jeremy Hill elected to undergo season-ending ankle surgery, though that could open the door for rookie Joe Mixon to show what he is truly made of as a lead back.
24. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (3-6, 4th NFC South): Last week: 29
Despite being without Jameis Winston, the Buccaneers were able to beat the Jets with New York’s former quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick under center. While points were hard to come by in the 15-10 win, the Bucs defense battered Josh McCown, hitting the 37 year-old 14 times.
25. New York Jets (4-6, 4th AFC East): Last week: 18
The Jets have lived on the edge this season, as six of their last seven games have been decided by one touchdown or less. While they have hung on to a decent record in 2017, the Jets will face the Panthers, Chiefs, Saints and Patriots in their last six games.
26. Indianapolis Colts (3-7, 4th AFC South): Last week: 25
After taking a lead over the Steelers into the fourth quarter, the Colts couldn’t hang on at home. With their last prayer of playoff hopes snuffed out and Andrew Luck on the IR, another big move for the future was made as the team released veteran corner Vontae Davis, who is an impending free agent and had recently undergone groin surgery.
27. Houston Texans (3-6, 3rd AFC South): Last week: 26
The nightmare continued for the Texans, as they were thoroughly beaten by the explosive Rams in their second loss without Deshaun Watson. Tom Savage will continue to be the Texans starter, but they have no other viable options on their roster (though clearly Josh Johnson and TJ Yates are better football players than Colin Kaepernick, right?).
28. Chicago Bears (3-6, 4th NFC North): Last week: 24
Mitch Trubisky was just three yards away from his first career 300-yard passing game, though the Bears’ loss to Green Bay was actually his first time surpassing 200 yards. However, he was sacked five times, which needs to improve.
29. Denver Broncos (3-6, T-3rd AFC West): Last week: 28
The Broncos continue to fade away into obscurity, as the image of them as a serious contender from just over a month ago is long-gone. With Brock Osweiler there was little to no change from when Trevor Siemian was under center, and the defense could do little to slow down Tom Brady as they let up 41 points.
30. San Francisco 49ers (1-9, 4th NFC West): Last week: 31
With their first win of the season, the 49ers have finally moved out of the bottom-two of these power rankings. Topping the Giants at home 31-21, the 49ers locker room post-game looked like San Francisco had won the Super Bowl.
31. New York Giants (1-8, 4th NFC East): Last week: 30
Despite strong performances from Eli Manning, Wayne Gallman and Sterling Shepard, the Giants were unable to beat a winless 49ers team on the road. The rest of Big Blue’s schedule doesn’t seem to have any winnable games on it, and they could seriously contend for the first overall pick.
32. Cleveland Browns (0-9, 4th AFC North): Last week: 32
There’s not much good to say about the Browns these days. Cleveland kept it close at Detroit before being gapped in the fourth quarter, though they did get their running game going, as the Browns averaged 6.1 yards per carry en route to 201 yards and two touchdowns.