NFL Power Rankings, Week 4 edition

Don't look now, but Aaron Rodgers and the Packers are creeping up our rankings.

Here they are, from No. 1 to No. 32, the top teams in the NFL. Call it the real referee edition …

1. Falcons (4-0): It keeps getting better for Matty Ice and Co. They finally played in a nail-biter and pulled it out in dramatic fashion. Backed up at his own 1-yard line, Matt Ryan hit Roddy White on a 59-yard bomb to set up the game-winning field goal. The last time Atlanta started this fast? In 2004, when they reached the NFC title game. These Falcons might be better — they have no quit, and that dome is a scary, scary place to play.
 
2. Texans (4-0): Granted it was Tennessee, but Texans’ defense (NFL’s top-ranked unit) is a one-man wrecking crew starring MVP candidate J.J. Watt. Wade Phillips was right, get his Canton bust ready.
 
3. 49ers (3-1): Run the ball. Play smothering defense. Throw in a wildcat play. Rinse. Repeat. The Niners only lose when they beat themselves.
 
4. Ravens (3-1): Joe Flacco declared himself a top-5 quarterback and he keeps stating a strong case for that. The defense isn’t what it used to be, but Ravens are resilient.
 
5. Cardinals (4-0): So much for Kevin Kolb as game manager. He chucked it up 48 times, including a 22-yard TD toss to win it with 22 seconds left. This might not be fool’s gold after all.
 
6. Bengals (3-1): Andy Dalton to AJ Green is as potent a 1-2 combo as any in football right now. Cincy has three straight wins and leads NFL in sacks (17).
 
7. Eagles (3-1):
Call them the Fightin’ Forrest Gumps, like a box of chocolates, you never know what you’re going to get. Need to turn field goals into touchdowns in red zone.
 
8. Packers (2-2): Aaron Rodgers is starting to go into Hulk mode, looking stronger and stronger by the second. Plus, remember, the Pack is really 3-1.
 
9. NY Giants (2-2):
Bit of a tumble after tough divisional defeat, a game they lost by about two yards and some questionable coaching decisions. NY fans already calling for Tom Coughlin’s head on Twitter.
 
10. Patriots (2-2): Who thinks Tom Brady is soft? F—k you bitches! Brady’s second-half performance — 199 yards passing and three touchdowns — was vintage Pats. Watch out.
 
11. Vikings (3-1): No one expected Adrian Peterson to be this healthy, this soon — and Vikes’ special teams is a weapon in itself. We told you to believe last week. Paying attention yet?
 
12. Bears (3-1): Jay Cutler is still throwing tantrums (this time at Mike Tice) but when he’s on, he’s on. Defense — while very good — can thank Tony Romo for a few freebies.
 
13. Chargers (3-1): Yet to beat what would be considered a legit “contender” (with wins over OAK, TEN, KC) but as long as Philip Rivers is under center, San Diego is in the conversation. They get winless Saints this week.
 
14. Broncos (2-2): It’s going to take a few more weeks for Peyton Manning to have this offense humming … however, that was a great preview, right?
 
15. Seahawks (2-2): Tough spot for Seattle after controversial win. Defense is great but it’s hard to overcome three turnovers. That’s on Russell Wilson.
 
16. Cowboys (2-2): You can blast Dez Bryant all you want for running bad routes (and he did). But this team isn’t going anywhere until Tony Romo puts his stamp on a game that matters.
 
17. Redskins (2-2): Skins easily could be 4-0, Robert Griffin III looks like he’s back at Baylor, willing this team to wins. Yes, DC, you have a quarterback.
 
18. Steelers (1-2): We’re keeping Pittsburgh at last week’s spot since they were on bye. Only fair. Besides, Troy Polamalu and James Harrison had a week to rest up.
 
19. NY Jets (2-2): We’ll repeat what we said last week, only with a different name. The Jets were a very flawed team with Santonio Holmes. Without him, watch them slip lower and lower.
 
20. Panthers (1-3): One Cam Newton fumble away from being that powerhouse Atlanta team on the road. Quarterback needs to do a better job handling adversity.
 
21. Rams (2-2): When was the last time a team named its kicker the MVP? That’s what’s happening in St. Louis where rookie Greg Zuerlein is 12-for-12, with a 60-yarder last week.
 
22. Bills (2-2): Despite leading by 14 points, Buffalo never had control. The Pats were just toying with them, playing sloppy football, and the Bills took advantage — for two-plus quarters, at least.
 
23. Lions (1-3): The Madden Curse has come to Motown, thanks Calvin Johnson, and the uber-talented Lions keep finding new ways to lose.
 
24. Dolphins (1-3): Throw the record out the window. Miami has been competing week in and week out. Ryan Tannehill — if he can cut down the picks — could be a franchise quarterback.
 
25. Buccaneers (1-3): Really bad breaks bound to happen with a young team. That’s three straight losses by a 5-point average margin of defeat. Rough.
 
26. Oakland (1-3): If the Raiders can get their starting corners back maybe, just maybe, they can improve. Enjoy the bye week, up next is a road date with Atlanta.
 
27. Chiefs (1-3):
You’re not going to win many games in the National Football League when you turn it over six times. Chiefs have talent, time.
 
28. Saints (0-4): Sean Payton’s absence on the sideline could be the best argument that he’s the best coach in football. Like the Chiefs, too much talent, too much time.
 
29. Jaguars (1-3): Rashean Mathis and Eben Britton still searching for their jock straps. Jags are what they are — and that’s not very good.
 
30. Colts (1-2): Golden rule: Thou shalt not bump a team on a bye.
 
31. Tennessee (1-3): Jake Locker’s shoulder injury could be one that lingers all season. If that’s the case, might be time to start thinking about 2013.
 
32. Browns (0-4): Actually showed poise and potential vs. Ravens. Perhaps the future is bright in Cleveland.



News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
International

Sierra Leone Ebola patient, recovered from family, dies…

An Ebola patient whose family sparked a nationwide hunt when they forcefully removed her from a treatment center and took her to a traditional healer has died.

Local

VIDEO: Cop reassigned as NYPD investigates alleged head…

An officer alleged to have stomped on a Brooklyn man's head last week had his gun taken away and placed on modified duty.

National

New York Times calls for legalization of pot

The New York Times editorial board on Saturday endorsed a repeal of the federal ban on marijuana, becoming the largest paper in the nation to back the idea.

National

Two injured after cable snaps on Ohio amusement…

(Reuters) - A cable on a large swing ride at an Ohio amusement park snapped and struck two riders as the swing was in motion,…

Music

Newport Folk Festival: Photo gallery of 35 moments…

As has been the tradition since Bob Dylan plugged in a bajillion years ago, the Newport Folk Festival embraces more musical genres than its name implies.

Music

MKTO: Behind the bromance

MKTO's Malcolm Kelley and Tony Oller talk about the American Dream tour, Demi Lovato and getting turned down by girls.

Arts

James Earl Jones and Rose Byrne head to…

Two-time Tony winner James Earl Jones returns to the New York stage next month as an eccentric grandfather in a revival of the 1930s comedy…

Movies

Box office: Scarlett Johansson wins battle of brains…

Scarlett Johansson's "Lucy" handily dispatched with Dwayne Johnson's "Hercules" over the weekend.

MLB

Yankees looking to trade for Josh Willingham: Report

CBS Sports’ Jon Heyman reported Sunday the Yankees are interested in Twins outfielder Josh Willingham.

MLB

Joe Torre: I'm in Hall of Fame because…

Joe Torre spent 18 years putting together a near Hall of Fame career as a player. But it was the 12 years he spent as…

MLB

Yankees GM Brian Cashman breaks down art of…

The action frequently accelerates as the non-waiver trade deadline approaches, as it will on Thursday.

Auto racing

Jeff Gordon captures fifth title at Brickyard 400

Jeff Gordon captures fifth title at Brickyard 400

Wellbeing

This Week In Health: Friends share similar DNA,…

Friends share similar DNA, study finds Location: U.S. Study subjects: Nearly 2,000 people Results: When it comes to our social networks, it seems that birds of…

Education

Are liberal arts colleges turning away from the…

Bryn Mawr College, a small women's college located just outside of Philadelphia, announced last week that it would be making standardized tests like the SAT…

Education

Recent grads discover school superintendent plagiarized parts of…

  Two recent high school graduates made a surprising discovery about the commencement speech their school superintendent delivered at their graduation: portions of it was copied…

Career

Feeling stuck? Get out of the entry-level job…

Television and movies may be littered with 20-something characters who seem directionless when it comes to their careers, but author Mary Traina says she finds…