We are three weeks in. It feels like there is some separation between the present top teams in the league versus the rest. However, I reject that theory for the moment. There are still five unbeaten teams remaining and I expect most of them to regress to the mean. So you ask what is the point of this diatribe? It’s still too early buy on some teams. I also encourage you not to sell stock on others just yet. Footing has yet to be established until we see at least one more week. The 2016 NFL season is still very young.
On with the rankings…
1. New England Patriots (3-0)
LAST WEEK: #2
I am done doubting Bill Belichick. Shutting out a previously unbeaten Houston Texans team with a third string quarterback in Jacoby Brissett. Well played Hoodie. . . Well played.
2. Denver Broncos (3-0)
LAST WEEK: #4
Phenomenal performance by Trevor Siemien in his first road start of his career at the tune of 23-35 312 yards and 4 touchdowns. The Broncos are reminding people why they are the defending Super Bowl champs.
3. Minnesota Vikings (3-0)
LAST WEEK: #7
I said entering the season that losing Teddy Bridgewater was not a death nail to the Vikings season. A 3-0 start with wins vs. Green Bay and at the defending NFC champion Carolina Panthers. One of the more balanced rosters in the league. Huge Monday night game vs. the New York Giants looms next week.
4. Pittsburgh Steelers (2-1)
LAST WEEK: #1
Gigantic let down in Philly, but it’s a marathon and not a sprint. The Steelers get LeVeon Bell at just the right time and overall should be just fine.
5. Philadelphia Eagles (3-0)
LAST WEEK: UNRANKED
First legitimate win of the year for the Eagles vs. the previously unbeaten Steelers. Carson Wentz looks the part. I’m slowly buying into this team. They are certainly an NFC East contender. Kudos to the job first-year coach Doug Pederson has done thus far.
6. Green Bay Packers (2-1)
LAST WEEK: #8
Aaron Rodgers returned to previous greatness throwing 4 touchdowns in the first half of their win over Detroit. The Packers let off the gas in the second half and allowed Detroit to make it a game late. A little concerning.
7. Seattle Seahawks (2-1)
LAST WEEK: #10
The Russell Wilson injury sustained in their win over San Francisco depending on the severity can derail this season for the Seahawks. Something to look at long term.
8. Kansas City Chiefs (2-1)
LAST WEEK: UNRANKED
Forced Jets QB Ryan Fitzpatrick into 6 interceptions. They may not be the best team in the AFC West but they are still hanging around.
9. Carolina Panthers (1-2)
LAST WEEK: #5
Still not overly concerned as yet even at 1-2 despite their disappointing home loss to Minnesota. The unrest in Charlotte I imagine also loomed heavy over the franchise much of this week. Huge NFC South battle with the first place Atlanta Falcons in Week 4 should tell us more where this Carolina’s team is at.
10. Arizona Cardinals (1-2)
LAST WEEK: #3
It isn’t that they lost to the Buffalo Bills. It isn’t that they had to travel east for a 1pm EST matchup. It’s the mere fact that they were embarrassed by a team that otherwise everyone wrote off last week. The Cardinals haven’t looked the same dating back to last season and there seems to be some regression with Carson Palmer, who threw 4 interceptions. Cardinal fans were reminded of the horrid performance in last year’s NFC championship game.