NFL Power Rankings – Week 4

September 23, 2008 | Thyrl Nelson

Here are the week 4 NFL Power Rankings. Again, there is no scientific formula or panel of expert consultants, just my opinion based on what we’ve seen so far this season. Last week’s ranking is in parenthesis.
  1. Dallas Cowboys (1) – 3-0 – The offense keeps rolling along in Dallas, and this week it appears that the defense may be catching up too.
  2. NY Giants (2) – 3-0 – Fault the Giants if you’d like for their near loss to Cinci, but the Big Blue just avoided a potential trap game and held off what looked like a desperate Bengals club.
  3. Denver Broncos (6) – 3-0 – This team will go as far as Cutler is able to carry them, and right now it looks like he’s up to the task.
  4. Philadelphia Eagles (7) – 2-1 – The Eagles are hitting on all cylinders against some pretty tough competition, Philly will be an opponent’s nightmare for as long as they can stay healthy.
  5. Buffalo Bills (9) – 3-0 – They’re winning ugly, but it’s still winning. Being comfortable in close games could pay huge dividends for these Bills down the stretch.
  6. Pittsburgh Steelers (5) – 2-1 – It seems that pressuring Ben Roethlisberger is the way to stop the Steelers, and given Pittsburgh’s offensive line woes it could be the downfall of the Steelers this season.
  7. Tennessee Titans (10) – 3-0 – You can’t talk about winning ugly without speaking of the Titans but they don’t appear to be going away anytime soon. Jeff Fischer will still have a heck of a decision to make once his franchise QB is healthy again.
  8. Green Bay Packers (4) – 2-1 – If Green Bay can’t get a running game together to balance their offense, they’re going to have a tough road ahead. But isn’t that the same thing we’d have said about them last year at this time?
  9. Carolina Panthers (3) – 2-1 – Getting Steve Smith back should have given the Panthers a boost on offense; instead they struggled to get out of their own way last week.
  10. San Diego Chargers (11) – 1-2 – This probably isn’t me reading too much into a single big win, but rather reading too little into a couple of close losses.
  11. Baltimore Ravens (22) – 2-0 – The Ravens were able to get back to business on Sunday and looked like they hadn’t lost a step. Next up, a Monday night showdown in Pittsburgh and a chance at a 2 game lead in the division.
  12. Washington Redskins (17) – 2-1 – Watching the Skins on offense makes it clear that it will take them some time to adjust to Jim Zorn. However, in the meantime they just keep winning.
  13. Arizona Cardinals (12) – 2-1 – The Cards look poised to take advantage of a weak NFC West. The Colts, Patriots, Steelers and Chargers are all struggling and the Cards look playoff bound, it is just week 4 after all.
  14. San Francisco 49ers (24) – 2-1 – JT O’Sullivan and Frank Gore doesn’t sound quite like Warner and Faulk just yet, but Mike Martz is certainly making his mark on the Niners’ offense.
  15. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (15) – 2-1 – Say what you want about their QB situation but the Bucs keep rolling along. A healthy Joey Galloway would go a long way toward making any QB look better.
  16. Jacksonville Jaguars (19) – 1-2 – The Jags have had a tough way to go in the first 3 weeks, but they look to be headed in the right direction.
  17. New Orleans Saints (18) – 1-2 – You might have better luck picking this division by just flipping a coin, it appears up for grabs. Flip a coin with these Saints too; they are like 2 different teams, from game to game and even from quarter to quarter.
  18. Indianapolis Colts (8) – 1-2 – The Colts were struggling against the run when they had Bob Sanders, without him they’re no longer the type of team that can consistently give up 100+ yards on the ground and still win games.
  19. Atlanta Falcons (25) – 2-1 – Offensively, the Falcons appear to be at least better than average, if the defense can keep up, they could be an unlikely force.
  20. Chicago Bears (14) – 1-2 – The only thing for sure about the NFC North is that Detroit is already a wrap. Everyone else it seems is still searching for their identities.
  21. New England Patriots (13) – 2-1 – Maybe this season is payback for keeping Tom Brady on the injury report every single week last season. At any rate, the Pats will have to get back to their 2001 offensive identity to stay afloat this year.
  22. Minnesota Vikings (20) – 1-2 – You see what the lack of a preseason has done to Peyton Manning, which is why it was inconceivable to believe the Vikes could have Tavaris Jackson ready for week one. Luckily for the Vikings, no one in the division looks poised to run away and Bryant McKinnie is just one game from returning.
  23. NY Jets (16) – 1-2 – Many appeared ready to hand the AFC East to the Jets after Tom Brady went down for the season, whether the Jets are able to step up and take it however appears to be another matter all together.
  24. Oakland Raiders (26) – 1-2 – It’s not like I think Lane Kiffin deserves to keep his job, but he’s got the Raiders looking better than they have since Jon Gruden left town. Does Al Davis think that firing him will make the team better? Then again, when you go to work for Al Davis, you get what you get, and you have to approach the job expecting these types of things.
  25. Seattle Seahawks (23) – 1-2 – The Seahawks have a pulse, now let’s see if they can keep it going and send Holmgren out with a respectable season.
  26. Miami Dolphins (30) – 1-2 – Even when the Patriots were great and the Dolphins were awful, the Phins always gave the Pats all that they could handle head to head. Well, the Pats are no longer great, but the Dolphins may still be awful.
  27. Detroit Lions (27) – 0-3 – Once again the focus is off of the field and squarely on Matt Millen in Detroit, and it’s not even October yet. I know that he makes a lot of money, but at a certain point coming to a job that you hate and that you aren’t good at has to wear on you, especially if you were a guy who was pretty successful in TV before taking on the job as Lions GM. I wonder if Matt Millen is anywhere near that point yet. I think most of us would have been out, long, long ago. If his credibility continues to plummet, TV might even be out of the question by the time he’s finished.
  28. Cincinnati Bengals (29) – 0-3 – The Bengals looked like a cornered animal on Sunday they gave everything they had in a desperation effort and still came up short. It’s time to forget about the Bengals being a force again this season already.
  29. Kansas City Chiefs (31) – 0-3 – I know the Chiefs couldn’t have had much in the way of expectations for this season, but it could be downright embarrassing to be looking up at the Raiders in the standings all season long.
  30. Cleveland Browns (21) – 0-3 – It’s not too late for the Browns to get things together and make a run, but it’s getting there very quickly.
  31. Houston Texans (28) – 0-2 – The Texans looked like they could have used their second game to continue working out the kinks. This team is reeling right now and Gary Kubiak will have a tough job getting and keeping them focused this season.
  32. St. Louis Rams (32) – 0-3 – Although the Lane Kiffin watch is on already, don’t be surprised if Scott Linnehan beats Kiffin, Millen and Marvin Lewis to the unemployment line.


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