After five weeks of NFL football, only two teams remain undefeated: New England Patriots and the San Francisco 49ers. One of these is more surprising than the other. Here are my NFL power rankings entering week 6:
1. New England
I was anticipating dropping the Patriots down to at least No. 2 after their gritty win over the Buffalo Bills last week. However, their convincing win and continued dominance on defense (along with a Chiefs; loss) made me keep the champs in the No. 1 spot for now. Sure, their schedule has been easy, there’s no denying that. Their defensive numbers are out of this world. I don’t care if they play college teams—those numbers would still be impressive. The Pats have two more easy games followed by an intense stretch of seven difficult tests. We’ll see how they hold up in that stretch. Until then, though, the Patriots continue to impress while other teams have struggled with inferior teams.
2. Kansas City
Every team has a bad game. This week just so happened to be a bad game for the Kansas City Chiefs. The Colts owned the underdog mentality and played out of their minds. Combined with an abysmal performance by the Chiefs, it was the perfect storm. The combination of two out the three of Patrick Mahomes’ favorite targets being out with injuries and him tweaking his ankle himself led to a heartbreak in Arrowhead. Are the Chiefs done? Not a chance. I don’t hold this loss against the Chiefs at all. They’ll be fine. Another loss like this, though? It might be time to panic a bit. We’ll see how Mahomes responds against a powerful Texans team next Sunday.
Seattle might be the surprise of the season for me. Russell Wilson is playing at an MVP-level. After throwing four TD passes in their win against the Rams, it’s time to take the Seahawks seriously. They have a matchup against the slumping Browns this next week. I see Seattle making yet another statement victory against them.
Is there a better story than Teddy Bridgewater filling in for future Hall of Famer Drew Brees and lighting it up? After Bridgewater’s unfortunate NFL career so far, this makes me so happy to see him playing well. The combination of him, Alvin Kamara, and Michael Thomas makes the Saints contenders even without Brees. Just imagine how they’ll be when Brees returns to the lineup.
5. San Francisco 49ers (4-0)
It’s time to take the 49ers seriously. Their running game looks a lot like what Baltimore’s was supposed to look like, but the combination of Jimmy Garoppolo and George Kittle, paired with their surprisingly successful running back corps has landed the 49ers with an undefeated record after five weeks. Their schedule is very difficult in the coming weeks—we’ll see if they can keep up their success.
Honorable Mention: Green Bay Packers (4-1)
I couldn’t leave the Packers off this list. My third, fourth, fifth, and sixth ranked teams were all so close together. After the Packers ran all over the Dallas Cowboys, I realized the Packers are for real this time. If they can continue to run the ball like they did against Dallas, watch out as the field will open for Aaron Rodgers to make shots down the field. Also, Green Bay’s defense has been surprising. I wouldn’t be a suprise to see them make a run for the Super Bowl.
It will be interesting to see which teams keep their good play up as the season continues.