Week 1 of the NFL season in the books. With most games taking place without fans and without a preseason buildup, there were unexpected results and sloppy football aplenty. As football fans and many people in the United State celebrate the return of football, here is the list of the top-10 teams entering Week 2.
- Kansas City Chiefs (1-0)
Previous Ranking: 1
The Kansas City Chiefs flexed their muscles for the entirety of the NFL to witness. They dropped their Super Bowl 54 championship banner and against the Houston Texans, Kansas City won 34-20 —indicating the banner they dropped might not be the only one in the near future. Rookie running back Clyde Edwards-Helaire ran for 138 yards in his debut, becoming the first running back to rush for over 100 yards in a debut for the defending Super Bowl champions. If he can continue to perform at that level, the Chiefs’ offense will be nearly impossible to stop.
2. Baltimore Ravens (1-0)
Previous Ranking: 3
Last season, the Ravens were bullied and defeated by the Cleveland Browns 40-25 at home in Week 4, their last regular season loss. Cleveland once again came to Baltimore to play the Ravens but this time, they were the ones getting dominated as the Ravens won resoundingly 38-6. Lamar Jackson threw three touchdown passes in an efficient performance. The Ravens look to keep their regular season win-streak alive as they head to Houston Sunday afternoon.
3. Seattle Seahawks (1-0)
Previous Ranking: 2
Russell Wilson has been one of the best quarterbacks of this generation and on Sunday, he put on a QB clinic at Atlanta, throwing for 322 yards and four touchdowns on an 88.5 completion percentage. The Seahawks controlled this game but showed some flaws, giving up 450 yards passing to Falcons’ QB Matt Ryan. While some of it was garbage time, Ryan looked too comfortable in the pocket. The Seahawks will face a differet kind of challenge as they welcome dual-threat QB Cam Newton and the New England Patriots this Sunday night.
4. New Orleans Saints (1-0)
Previous Ranking: 5
The Saints’ defense showed in Sunday’s 34-23 win over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers they too are a legit unit despite the offense getting all the attention during the Sean Payton era. Cornerback Janoris Jenkins returned an interception for a touchdown and forced two more turnovers against one of the NFL’s best offenses on paper. However, the offense gained less than 300 yards, a concerning output going forward. They will head to Las Vegas as the Raiders open Allegiant Stadium on Monday night.
5. Green Bay Packers (1-0)
Previous Ranking: N/A
Week 1 overreactions can be a problem. Many analysts and I have most seasons. However, one takeaway I’m confident in is I picked the wrong team to win the NFC North. Clearly, the Packers drafting Jordan Love upset Aaron Rodgers as he played as intensely as I have ever seen him play. He torched the Minnesota Vikings’ defense for 364 yards and four touchdowns. Wide receiver Davante Adams was the main beneficiary with 14 receptions, 156 yards and two touchdowns. The Packers host the struggling Detroit Lions for their home opener on Sunday.
6. Buffalo Bills (1-0)
Previous Ranking: 8
The Bills’ 27-17 win over the Jets is one of those examples where the final score is misleading to the overall narrative of the game. The Bills handled the Jets as they led New York 21-0 in the second quarter. Despite two fumbles, QB Josh Allen had one of his best games as a passer, throwing for 312 yards and two touchdowns on top of a rushing touchdown. If he can cut down on the fumbling, he can improve on his 2019 season dramatically. Buffalo heads down to Miami to take on the Dolphins on Sunday.
7. San Francisco 49ers (0-1)
Previous Ranking: 4
I will say this: the San Francisco 49ers are in trouble. They lost at home to the Arizona Cardinals 24-20 and many problems arose from the defeat. Jimmy Garoppolo continues to prove how mediocre he is and the defense didn’t resemble last year’s dominant unit. However, they were without their top-two wide receivers in Deebo Samuel and Brandon Aiyuk. Injuries were a factor but they have to get better all-around if they are to defend their NFC title. Kyle Shanahan has a lot of work to do to get this team back on track. Time will tell if the injuries are the biggest cause of their struggles on Sunday or not.
8. Los Angeles Rams (1-0)
Previous Ranking: N/A
The Rams were left for dead coming into this season as many predicted a last-place finish for the 2018 NFC Champions. However, the Rams channeled their 2018 form in their 20-17 win over the Dallas Cowboys with an impressive opening drive and an 11-play 85-yard touchdown drive in the second half. Running back Malcolm Brown ran for two touchdowns and Robert Woods has over 100 yards receiving. The Rams looked impressive despite holding on in part due to a bogus offensive pass interference call. The Rams head to Philadelphia to play the Eagles in possibly the most intriguing game of Week 2.
9. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (0-1)
Previous Ranking: 7
The Tom Brady experiment got off to a poor start in New Orleans as Brady through two interceptions and the Bucs trailed by as much as 17 points in the fourth quarter. The offense clearly needed a preseason to gel together as Sunday’s performance was not what many were expecting with an insanely loaded roster. The Bucs’ front seven did hold the Saints’ to 2.4 yards per carry, a good sign going forward. I believe the Bucs are still too talented to push the panic button but they need to rebound against the Carolina Panthers to instill confidence in their fan base going forward.
10. Dallas Cowboys (0-1)
Previous Ranking: 6
Few had a worse Week 1 than the Dallas Cowboys as they not only lost to the Rams 20-17, a game many expected them to win, but also they lost tight end Blake Jarwin for the season and linebacker Leighton Vander Esch for six to eight weeks after he suffered a broken collarbone. To put the cherry on top, their attempt to force overtime was denied by a questionable offensive pass interference call on their final drive. The Cowboys still have loads of talent and head coach Mike McCarthy still has time to implement his scheme. The Cowboys host the Falcons on Sunday.