NFL power rankings: Nos. 20-11
L, 31-24 @ Raiders
Offensively, the Lions were outstanding on the road against the Raiders. Quarterback Matthew Stafford tossed for over 400 yards with three touchdowns against an interception, and two of his receivers, Kenny Golladay and Marvin Jones Jr., had over 100 receiving yards apiece.
But Detroit didn’t have an answer for Raiders running back Josh Jacobs, who has been outstanding, and that lone Stafford interception seemed to provide the boost Oakland needed to turn the game in its favor towards the second half.
The Lions fall considerably in NFL power rankings, seeing how much they needed to keep pace in the tough NFC North.
L, 26-3 vs. Texans
Well, maybe the Jaguars didn’t adjust to the time change playing in London against the Texans. That might be the only explanation.
Either way, Jacksonville was entirely outclassed by Houston in every phase. Quarterback Gardner Minshew might have lost his starting job back to Nick Foles, considering the former’s two interceptions thrown and 59.6 passer rating. Head coach Doug Marrone will consider such during the team’s bye week, which the Jaguars need if they want to get back into the AFC South discussion.
W, 26-24 vs. Colts
How about that? The Steelers have now won three in a row after knocking off the Colts in exciting fashion.
OK, so the Colts lost quarterback Jacoby Brissett to a leg injury, but backup signal-caller Brian Hoyer looked good enough against Pittsburgh’s defense. On the flip side, Steelers quarterback Mason Rudolph was OK, tossing for 191 yards with a touchdown against an interception.
The Steelers can feel good about getting back to the .500 mark, although it took a missed field goal in the waning seconds by Colts kicker Adam Vinatieri to ensure it.
W, 26-11 vs. Packers
If the Chargers played like they did against the Packers in Week 9, they’d easily be a seven- or eight-win team by now.
EDGE Joey Bosa was awesome, taking over the game to the tune of 1.5 sacks and four quarterbacks against Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers, who was flustered all day long. Chargers wide receiver Mike Williams had himself a day, too, hauling in 111 yards off three receptions, while running back Melvin Gordon found the end zone twice.
Los Angeles saved its chances to make the playoffs with this victory, and it climbs notably in our NFL power rankings this week.
W, 31-24 vs. Lions
The Raiders defense still needs to find answers, particularly in the secondary and after trading away cornerback Gareon Conley not long ago.
That said, head coach Jon Gruden and Co. won’t care after beating the Lions in an exciting matchup, getting back to the .500 mark in the process.
And, gosh. Jacobs is sure fun to watch. He can carry the offensive load for Oakland if he wants to, and he should.
Think about what happened in Oakland last year, and now consider the reality Gruden’s team is very much alive in the playoff hunt.
W, 22-14 vs. Bears
A win in Week 9 was exactly what the Eagles needed to move on from a rough patch earlier this season. Now with a two-game win streak, Philadelphia can safely put itself back in the conversation for NFC East champions, since no one is exactly running away with the division.
Tight end Zach Ertz finally had a statement game, hauling in over 100 yards for the first time this season. And while the Bears offense is awful, give credit to Philly for holding Chicago to a mere 164 yards.
L, 26-24 @ Steelers
Yes, a big tumble for the Colts in our NFL power rankings. But that has more to do with Brissett going down with what appeared to be an MCL injury.
Hoyer came in for Brissett and tossed three touchdowns against one interception. Don’t let that fool you, however. Hoyer isn’t a quality quarterback at this point in his career, if ever. Just ask 49ers fans, who saw more than enough back in 2017.
If Brissett misses significant time, the Colts could be in some serious trouble.
W, 30-20 vs. Titans
Panthers quarterback Kyle Allen was embarrassed against the 49ers a week ago, yet he bounced back nicely enough against the Titans in Week 9.
Allen was picked off again, yes. But his two touchdowns and 232 pass yards should be enough for head coach Ron Rivera to at least consider keeping him in the starting role over Cam Newton for another week.
And in case you didn’t know, running back Christian McCaffrey is awfully good at football. He’s carrying this team on his shoulders and is squarely in the MVP discussion.
W, 37-18 @ Giants
It was far from perfect. And it took the Cowboys a couple of quarters to start finding their offensive rhythm.
When it did, however, the Giants had zero answers. Especially for Ezekiel Elliott, who rushed for 139 yards on 23 carries, while quarterback Dak Prescott managed 257 yards through the air and three touchdowns against an interception.
Fortunately for Dallas, no one else is running away with the NFC East, and a 10-win season could be beyond enough to pull away with the division crown.
No change in NFL power rankings for the Rams, who are coming off their Week 9 bye.
Los Angeles’ hopes to get back into the NFC West race will face a tough challenge on the road against the surging Steelers, which could ultimately determine whether or not head coach Sean McVay’s squad has a chance to make the playoffs this year.