NFL Power Rankings: NFC West holds strong

Jeff Curry-US PRESSWIRE - Presswire

Despite a slight hiccup (or more appropriately, spewing all over themselves) the Arizona Cardinals still remain in first place in the NFC West, albeit tied for first. Unfortunately for the Cardinals, the other three teams in the once ridiculed NFC West won their games, leaving the NFC Best as the only division in which every team is over .500. Power rankings, while subjective in nature, should take note of the NFC West's supremacy, and all of its teams should undoubtedly be in every top 20. Fact.

1. Houston Texans (5-0) - The Texans can beat you in a multitude of ways. Shaub can sling it like any other QB in the league, Foster can run all over you, and the defense (lead by J.J. S.W.A.T.) is right up their with all the other elite defenses.

2. San Francisco 49ers (4-1) - "But, but, but, Atlanta is 5-0, therefore they have to be in front of every other non-defeated team." This is my power ranking, and the 49ers rank ahead of the Falcons in both points allowed and points scored, so there.

3. Atlanta Falcons (5-0) - Well, I mean, they are undefeated. I can't rank them that low. Run offense leaves a lot to be desired, but if "The Mattural" can keep up his level of play, maybe they won't need a running game?

4. Baltimore Ravens (4-1) - Have we witnessed a paradigm shift in Baltimore? It would appear that way, as this is now a stout offense carrying a capable defense. They are missing Suggs in the pass rush on defense for sure.

5. New England Patriots (3-2) - I don't care that they're 3-2, they are still the New England Patriots. Heck, this years instalment can even run the football effectively. Their offense is still tops in the NFL, and their young defense is improving as the season progresses

6. Chicago Bears (4-1) - The Bears aren't gonna wow the pants off of anybody, but they have a solid lineup top to bottom. Pass blocking could use some work, but their defense can keep them in any game. Cheer up Cutler!

7. New York Giants (3-2) - Call me foolish for expecting more out of the defense, I'm looking at you JPP, but Eli Manning and Co. are doing more than enough on offense. And, they are doing all of this without/with a limited Hakeem Nicks.

8. San Diego Chargers (3-2) - Memo to the Chargers: Ryan Matthews is a pretty darn good running back, please start using him more, especially in critical situations. Tons of talent on this team gets them into the top 10, coaching is holding them back.

9. Arizona Cardinals (4-1) - The offensive line (see: Batiste, D'Anthony) has looked overmatched all season, making Cardinals fans everywhere long for Levi Brown. Losing Ryan Williams for the year hurts a lot too. Really, not a good week for the Cardinals. Defense is still good though!

10. Seattle Seahawks (3-2) - How can a team tied for last be in the top 10? Because they have a really good defense, and likely would improve on offense if they put in Matt Flynn. Three NFC West teams in the top 10, you better believe it.

11. Minnesota Vikings (4-1) - Really, the only thing holding the Minnesota Vikings back from being ranked higher, is the fact that they are the Minnesota Vikings. As in, Minnesota Vikings, third overall selection in last year's draft before trading back to the fourth pick.

12. Cincinnati Bengals (3-2) - Boy, the Bengals hit it big when they drafted A.J. Green and Andy Dalton with their first and second round picks.

13. Green Bay Packers (2-3) - At some point losses got to start counting for something in power rankings; can't stay at the top by name alone. Green Bay has to start generating pressure outside of Clay Matthews.

14. Philadelphia Eagles (3-2) - Defense has been huge for the Eagles, but the offense will try to do anything in their power to lose the game. Doesn't help that Vick has been taking a beating.

15. Denver Broncos (2-3) By no means is the division title out of reach for the Broncos, but they are going to have to start turning good performances into 'W's. Helps that Manning is Manning again.

16. St. Louis Rams (3-2) - Whether it was a product of horrid offensive line play or an impressive showing by the front 4, the Rams pass rush was on display Thursday night. The last NFC West team just misses out on the top 15, but if they have another performance like that on defense, they'll be sure to climb.

17. Dallas Cowboys (2-2) - Bye week in Jerryland, or Jerryworld, I'm not to sure what they're calling it nowadays. Their offensive line can't pass block, and then there's the whole Romo thing.

18. Pittsburgh Steelers (2-2) - Bye weeks for the Steelers gives them time to get right, but the Pittsburgh era of having the top defensive unit may be coming to an end. Can the return of Harrison ignite the pass rush?

19. Miami Dolphins (2-3) - I know your pain Miami Dolphin's fans, a stellar defense that know body is talking about. Keep playing like you are though, and the talking heads will take notice.

20. Indianapolis Colts (2-2) - Just five short weeks into his NFL career, and the Colts have become "Andrew Luck's team". Looked very good coming off of a bye against Green Bay. Reggie Wayne also looks like he's in his prime again.

21. New York Jets (2-2) - They kept it close against the Texans, but they're not a very good team. I think Rex Ryan hates having any sort of offensive rhythm, judging by the inexplicable swapping of his quarterbacks; leaving both men incapable of finding a "grove". Just please make it Tebow Time already.

22. Washington Redskins (2-3) - RG3 confirmed on twitter that it was only a "mild" concussion, and that he expects to play next week, but that must have been a terrifying moment for Skins fans. Washington is determined to make every game a shootout.

23. Buffalo Bills (2-3) - The Bills visit Arizona this upcoming Sunday, coming off of two very disappointing losses. How will each team respond after their respective embarrassments?

24. New Orleans Saints (1-4) - Good for the Saints, they won't go winless this year. But don't think that all is good in the Big Easy, as their defense has been thoroughly unimpressive. Can Brees carry this team to the playoffs after a rough start?

25. Detroit Lions (1-3) - It would appear as though the Lions rested on their laurels, and expected inevitable improvement over last year's playoff appearance. However, those high round draft picks on defense have not panned out so far for this season. Its gonna be up to Stafford and Megatron to carry their team.

26. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (1-3) - They are better than their record would indicate. As a whole, the Bucs are very average, but deserve a much better fate than that that has befallen them so far in this young season.

27. Carolina Panthers (1-4) - Ok Ron Rivera, it's time to put away the options plays, and start playing NFL football. With Cam Newton's talent, you should not have to rely on a college style offense to be competitive, and with the way the defense is playing, you're going to have to put up point at a much more consistent level.

28. Oakland Raiders (1-3) - Not a whole lot to get excited about here. Carson Palmer is looking more comfortable, but then Run DMc has not.

29. Jacksonville Jaguars (1-4) - Speaking of not having a lot to get excited about. Gabbert is not looking like the long-term answer for the Jags, but hey at least they have one of the best left tackles in the NFL.

30. Kansas City Chiefs (1-4) - Looks like its about time for a rebuild in KC. Also, to those KC fans who did: it's never cool to cheer for an injury, even if its your own team.

31. Tennessee Titans (1-4) - Bad news, it doesn't look like Tennessee will be competing for a playoff spot. Worse news: if they end up in a position to draft Geno Smith, they are going to have to make a very hard decision.

32. Cleveland Browns (0-5) - Poor Cleveland. Not just the team, but the whole city.

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