The Packers are at the top. So are the Patriots and the Ravens. That's all predictable. What's not, and what will undoubtedly stir the waters, is that we're being stubborn on two counts. First of all, we're still picking the Eagles to win the NFC East and so we're not dropping them. Sorry, they're the best 1-4 team around and they'll be just fine in the end. We also don't believe in the 49ers. That being said, our Power Rankings might look a bit funny to you.
But that's why we do this. So in the end we can say, "I told you so." Or you can laugh us out of the room. But so much changes week to week in the NFL, so don't be so quick to throw stones. The next week might just validate some of this nonsense. Here's our rankings:
1. Green Bay Packers (5-0) - Even after an ugly half of football, they put away a talented team quickly and easily enough to stay at the top spot. Let's be honest, they probably weren't moving anyway.
2. New England Patriots (4-1) - Two games up over Rex Ryan's bumbling feet gives the Pats some breathing room... wait, Buffalo? Yep, things are that upside-down.
3. Baltimore Ravens (3-1) - Division got a little better while they were gone, making for some interesting games ahead for this potent team on both sides of the ball.
4. Detroit Lions (5-0) - The offense keeps rolling, but a great, emotional statement last night against a division rival signals they could go farther than you'd expect.
5. New Orleans Saints (4-1) - Cam Newton kept it close, but Drew Brees keeps the Saints marching forward despite the lack of buzz about this fine team.
6. San Diego Chargers (4-1) - An easy division looks easier when you have Phil Rivers at the helm. Solid win at Mile High.
7. Buffalo Bills (4-1) - The Eagles beat themselves, but kudos to a Bills team that had already put themselves in a position to win. This is suddenly a team that can win in multiple ways.
8. Houston Texans (3-2) - Injuries will take their toll in a major way and opens up the division for, wait, nobody is even there to take it. Texans might still win despite loss of Mario Williams.
9. Pittsburgh Steelers (3-2) - The Titans win was the ideal statement to make at the ideal time. They're only a half game behind the division lead after a very forgettable start to the season.
10. Tennessee Titans (3-2) - Just when it seemed like someone might step up and take over the AFC South, the Steelers remind us all that it's still a rebuilding Tennessee squad.
11. New York Jets (2-3) - A losing record after five games is not acceptable. If the Eagles weren't horrible, the media would be all over Rex Ryan and his overrated cast.
12. Oakland Raiders (3-2) - The ghost of Al Davis will carry this team for some time, but honestly they only won because Matt Schaub panicked near the end zone for whatever reason.
13. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (3-2) - What in the world do you do after a performance like the doormats they played against the 49ers? Are they real?
14. Atlanta Falcons (2-3) - The Falcons are searching for any signs of life after a momentum killing defeat and loss of Julio Jones to potential injury.
15. San Francisco 49ers (4-1) - I'm not buying the hype because an offensive core of Alex Smith and Frank Gore hasn't done anything for the last 27 years. Why believe in it now after five games?
16. Philadelphia Eagles (1-4) - See above. The Eagles will be fine (despite the mass panic). I'd place a Benjamin that they still win the division.
17. New York Giants (3-2) - You can't lose to the Seahawks at any point and be taken seriously the rest of the year.
18. Cincinnati Bengals (3-2) - That defense is the best unit that no one's talking about. How they lost Jonathan Joseph and kept going forward is an incredible feat of coaching.
19. Chicago Bears (2-3) - Lifeless against Lions in key game that separates the haves and have-nots in NFC North.
20. Dallas Cowboys (2-2) - Calm down on Romo. He's a very fine QB in a league where you live and die by it. This division is wide open so Cowboys might profit from being just good enough.
21. Washington Redskins (3-1) - If you believe this record is a legit reflection of this team's talent, you either dress as a hog on Sundays or you think some guy named Thighs-man is still leading them.
22. Cleveland Browns (2-2) - The drama coming from Peyton Hillis cannot go over well on a team trying to find its identity and set a tone with Colt McCoy as leader.
23. Kansas City Chiefs (2-3) - Quick note: their last two opponents had a combined record of 0-8. Believe what you want.
24. Carolina Panthers (1-4) - Not sure whether or not saying that losing has never been so hopeful is a good thing or not.
25. Denver Broncos (1-4) - Tim Tebow moved the chains and sells the merch. Last time I checked, those were the two things that mattered most.
26. Minnesota Vikings (1-4) - Donovan McNabb deserves a better end to his career than the memories he's made the last two seasons.
27. Indianapolis Colts (0-5) - Curtis Painter found some first half life, but someone didn't make any adjustments at halftime.
28. Jacksonville Jaguars (1-4) - Gene Smith was widely praised last year for his incredible drafting ability and the Jags were legit. This year, they're a total joke. How did this happen so fast?
29. Seattle Seahawks (2-3) - Tarvaris Jackson gets injured and Seattle wins? Not a coincidence.
30. St. Louis Rams (0-4) - The Rams desperately needed some time to get it together. The talent is here to win some games and the bye week should bring some healing.
31. Arizona Cardinals (1-4) - Sad to say for the Cards' front office, it's clear the Cardinals still need a quarterback.
32. Miami Dolphins (0-4) - If there's a Suck for Luck campaign headquarters, it's definitely in South Beach.