Week 4 NFL Power Rankings: New Teams at the Top

Sep 25, 2022; Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA; Minnesota Vikings head coach Kevin O'Connell. Mandatory Credit: Jeffrey Becker-USA TODAY Sports.

Perhaps this is on me for being terrible at ranking NFL teams, but four of the top five teams from Week 3’s power rankings lost this weekend. On top of that, three of the bottom five teams won. The NFL season is regularly unpredictable, but this season seems to have gotten off to a particularly strange start.

Through three weeks of play, the only two 3-0 teams are the Philadelphia Eagles and Miami Dolphins. Prior to the season’s start, the Eagles had 25-1 odds to win the Super Bowl while the Dolphins sat at 40-1. We’ve got some major shuffling happening again this week after another strange series of events in Week 3.

1. Philadelphia Eagles

  • Last Week: 24-8 win @ WSH
  • Trending: +2
  • This Week: 10/2 vs. JAX

The Eagles continue to dominate opponents, winning their second consecutive games by double digits. The one concern with Philadelphia moving forward is that they can’t quite seem to string together back-to-back halves on offense. Once again, they scored all 24 of their points in the first half.

2. Miami Dolphins

  • Last Week: 21-19 win vs. BUF
  • Trending: +6
  • This Week: 9/29 @ CIN

Regardless of whether Tua Tagovailoa suffered a back injury or a concussion on Sunday, this was a huge win for the Dolphins. The offense had an off day, but the fact that their defense was able to hang with this Buffalo Bills offense was extremely impressive. Now, they have to come off a short week and go into Cincinnati to take on the reigning AFC champs.

3. Buffalo Bills

  • Last Week: 19-21 loss @ MIA
  • Trending: -2
  • This Week: 10/2 @ BAL

The Super Bowl favorites hit a bit of a snag on Sunday in Miami. Obviously, they were never going to go 20-0, and the heat certainly played a factor in both Florida games this weekend. However, the fact that they continue to struggle running the ball has to be a concern moving forward.

4. Los Angeles Rams

  • Last Week: 20-12 win @ ARI
  • Trending: +2
  • This Week: 10/3 @ SF

The Rams jumped out to an early 13-0 lead in the first half, and they were able to ride that to a win. The defense did a great job of shutting down the Cardinals run game as well, and after their blowout loss on opening night, they suddenly find themselves at the top of the NFC West.

5. Kansas City Chiefs

  • Last Week: 17-20 loss @ IND
  • Trending: -3
  • This Week: 10/2 @ TB

Early in the season, Patrick Mahomes has been one of the luckiest players in terms of intercept-able passes, but that luck did not prevail on Sunday in Indy. Mahomes threw his first interception of the season, and it came on the last-gasp effort to either tie or win the game.

6. Green Bay Packers

  • Last Week: 14-12 win @ TB
  • Trending: +1
  • This Week: 10/2 vs. NE

It’s the same old story for the Green Bay Packers. Their offense still hasn’t hit its stride yet, but their defense has held their last two opponents to a total of two touchdowns.

7. Baltimore Ravens

  • Last Week: 37-26 win @ NE
  • Trending: +3
  • This Week: 10/2 vs. BUF

It’s Lamar Jackson’s world, and we’re just living in it. He recorded 100+ rushing yards for the second week in a row, and then as if that weren’t enough, he also added four touchdown passes.

8. Tampa Bay Buccaneers

  • Last Week: 12-14 loss vs. GB
  • Trending: -4
  • This Week: 10/2 vs. KC

Tampa Bay’s offensive line simply isn’t healthy enough to keep Tom Brady upright, nor can they open up holes for running backs to burst through. Add in that they’ve been missing weapons virtually all year, and it’s going to be hard for this team to put up points. Their defense will need to come up huge against Kansas City.

9. Minnesota Vikings

  • Last Week: 28-24 win vs. DET
  • Trending: —
  • This Week: 10/2 @ NO (London)

The Vikings showed exactly who they are at this point in the season. They’re a good team, but they remain a team needing to improve in some respects before they truly can be considered contenders. Either way, a win is a win for this team after two-straight seasons below .500.

10. Cincinnati Bengals

  • Last Week: 27-12 win @ NYJ
  • Trending: +3
  • This Week: 9/29 vs. MIA

Cincinnati needed a team to beat up on after starting the season 0-2, and the reigning AFC champs found that team in the New York Jets. Joe Burrow had a very nice game, and the defense held New York without a touchdown.

11. Los Angeles Chargers

  • Last Week: 10-38 loss vs. JAX
  • Trending: -6
  • This Week: 10/2 @ HOU

The injuries are starting to pile up for the Los Angeles Chargers. Justin Herbert played through his rib injury that he suffered last week. Now Rashawn Slater is out for the year, and Joey Bosa suffered a groin injury that could keep him sidelined. As a result, wins might be difficult to come by for the foreseeable future.

12. Denver Broncos

  • Last Week: 11-10 win vs. SF
  • Trending: —
  • This Week: 10/2 @ LV

The Broncos continue to play games that get uglier and uglier. Somehow, they still won on Sunday night, but really, did anyone actually win by being involved in that game?

13. Jacksonville Jaguars

  • Last Week: 38-10 win @ LAC
  • Trending: +8
  • This Week: 10/2 @ PHI

Don’t look now folks, but Trevor Lawrence may be arriving right before our eyes. He’s had a spectacular start to the 2022 season for the Jaguars and has them atop the AFC South.

14. Dallas Cowboys

  • Last Week: 23-16 win @ NYG
  • Trending: +2
  • This Week: 10/2 vs. WSH

The Cowboys pass rush is absolutely ferocious, and they terrorized Daniel Jones for the entire night. Cooper Rush is 2-0 as the starter in Dallas this year and 3-0 for his career.

15. San Francisco 49ers

  • Last Week: 10-11 loss @ DEN
  • Trending: -4
  • This Week: 10/3 vs. LAR

For the first time this season, the San Francisco 49ers were held under 170 rushing yards, and as a result, their offense found no rhythm for the entire night. Adding insult to injury, Jimmy Garoppolo recreated the Dan Orlovsky safety.

16. Arizona Cardinals

  • Last Week: 12-20 loss vs. LAR
  • Trending: -2
  • This Week: 10/2 @ CAR

The Arizona Cardinals failed to score a touchdown for the first time since Week 15 of the 2021 season against the Detroit Lions. This time around, it makes much more sense.

17. Indianapolis Colts

  • Last Week: 20-17 win vs. KC
  • Trending: +7
  • This Week: 10/2 vs. TEN

The Colts still haven’t quite figured out how to consistently get production out of Jonathan Taylor, but this time around, Matt Ryan woke up and found a way to carry the Colts offense to their first win.

18. Tennessee Titans

  • Last Week: 24-22 win vs. LV
  • Trending: +5
  • This Week: 10/2 @ IND

You have to go all the way back to 2019 to find the last time Derrick Henry recorded fewer than 100 rushing yards in the first three games of a season. Whether it’s just a slow start or a sign of things to come, Titans fans and fantasy owners cannot feel too confident right now. Nonetheless, Tennessee got their first win of the season.

19. Las Vegas Raiders

  • Last Week: 22-24 loss @ TEN
  • Trending: -4
  • This Week: 10/2 vs. DEN

Converting 8% of your third down attempts is never going to end well, and ultimately, it held the Raiders back from putting together a complete comeback on Sunday.

20. Cleveland Browns

  • Last Week: 29-17 win vs. PIT
  • Trending: +3
  • This Week: 10/2 @ ATL

I said it last week, and I’ll say it again: the best thing for a team that got embarrassed the way the Cleveland Browns did last week against the New York Jets is to get back on the field. They played Thursday night against the Pittsburgh Steelers and simply overwhelmed their inferior division rivals.

21. New York Giants

  • Last Week: 16-23 loss vs. DAL
  • Trending: -3
  • This Week: 10/2 vs. CHI

Daniel Jones had absolutely no time to throw the ball and was under duress the entire night. The Giants offensive line has struggled throughout the season, and now this week we get a matchup between two of the most fraudulent 2-1 teams in the league.

22. Detroit Lions

  • Last Week: 24-28 loss @ MIN
  • Trending: +3
  • This Week: 10/2 vs. SEA

If there was ever a Lions-esque way to lose a game, it was Sunday against the Vikings. Detroit’s offense had Minnesota’s defense on the ropes for much of the afternoon, and Dan Campbell inexplicably took his foot off the gas down the stretch.

23. Pittsburgh Steelers

  • Last Week: 17-29 loss @ CLE
  • Trending: -3
  • This Week: 10/2 vs. NYJ

The loss of T.J. Watt cannot be overstated for the Pittsburgh Steelers. Their defense, especially against the run, looks completely hopeless without him. They allowed the Browns to get whatever they wanted on the ground.

24. New England Patriots

  • Last Week: 26-37 loss vs. BAL
  • Trending: -5
  • This Week: 10/2 @ GB

Mac Jones left Sunday’s game with an ankle sprain, but even when he’s been available to play, the production simply hasn’t been there. He made a few very poor decisions on throws down the stretch, and it wasn’t enough to keep up with the Ravens.

25. Carolina Panthers

  • Last Week: 22-14 win vs. NO
  • Trending: +6
  • This Week: 10/2 vs. ARI

The Carolina Panthers defense has been sneaky good through the first three games of the season. When you go up against a trigger-happy QB like Jameis Winston, that is a recipe for creating turnovers.

26. New Orleans Saints

  • Last Week: 14-22 loss @ CAR
  • Trending: -9
  • This Week: 10/2 vs. MIN (London)

The aforementioned Winston may be trigger-happy, but he’s also playing with a broken back. He has not been nearly as accurate on his throws as he was early in the 2021 season, and it has cost the Saints each of the last two games.

27. Chicago Bears

  • Last Week: 23-20 win vs. HOU
  • Trending: +1
  • This Week: 10/2 @ NYG

Despite Justin Fields completing eight or fewer passes in each of Chicago’s first three games, the Bears have scraped together enough points to start the season 2-1. If their defense can keep putting pressure on Daniel Jones, there’s a very good chance they’ll be 3-1 by the time this weekend ends. Talk about Sunday scaries.

28. Atlanta Falcons

  • Last Week: 27-23 win @ SEA
  • Trending: +4
  • This Week: 10/2 vs. CLE

Neither one of the Atlanta Falcons or the Seattle Seahawks wanted to win this game down the stretch, and that’s really the only way the Falcons can win games in 2022. Cordarrelle Patterson continues to tear defenses apart though, recording 141 rushing yards at 8.9 yards per rush.

29. Houston Texans

  • Last Week: 20-23 loss @ CHI
  • Trending: -2
  • This Week: 10/2 vs. LAC

Houston’s run defense was horrible even when David Montgomery left. They allowed Khalil Herbert to run for 157 yards and two touchdowns. They somehow stayed in the game despite that, but a Davis Mills interception on their own side of the field allowed Chicago to kick the game-winning field goal.

30. New York Jets

  • Last Week: 12-27 loss vs. CIN
  • Trending: -4
  • This Week: 10/2 @ PIT

37-year-old Joe Flacco has now attempted over 40 passes in each of the first three games this season, and finally, it looks like his arm is starting to fall apart. This strategy is simply unsustainable for New York.

31. Seattle Seahawks

  • Last Week: 23-27 loss vs. ATL
  • Trending: -2
  • This Week: 10/2 vs. CLE

The Seattle Seahawks never play a normal game, and while Geno Smith was driving the offense down the field to potentially win the game, he threw a game-sealing interception on a play that started at Atlata’s 38-yard-line.

32. Washington Commanders

  • Last Week: 8-24 loss vs. PHI
  • Trending: -2
  • This Week: 10/2 @ DAL

Carson Wentz was sacked on five of his first eight dropbacks on Sunday, and this pretty much sums up how things went for the Commanders on Sunday.

Josh Frey is a Class of 2020 graduate of The College of Idaho with a bachelor’s degree in Creative Writing as well as minors in History, Human Biology, and Journalism. When he’s not writing about the NFL, Josh can often be found training for a marathon, playing video games, or rooting for the Milwaukee Brewers and Bucks. For more of his takes, NFL and otherwise, check out his Twitter account: @Freyed_Chicken