NFL Power Rankings, Week 3
NFL’s Top 25
1. Seahawks (3-0): Not only did they cover that ridiculous 19.5-point spread, they looked good doing it. The ’Hawks racked up 479 yards of total offense — 323 through the air — in a 45-17 old-school beatdown of hopeless Jacksonville. They could be in for real letdown this week, on the road in Houston — but we’re not betting against them. BEAST team in football, right Marshawn Lynch?
2. Broncos (3-0): Peyton Manning is still wiping Jon Gruden’s slobber off his orange uniform, and rightfully so. Has Peyton ever had this many weapons?
3. Saints (3-0): Sean Payton gets an early vote for MVP. Seriously. No coach has ever won that award. He deserves it for bringing back that Voodoo that he do down in the Bayou.
4. Bears (3-0): We messed up. We had then ranked too low last week. Jay Cutler is initiating contact, and the Bears are dominating on both sides of the ball.
5. Patriots (3-0): It looks like Tom Brady is finally getting the young guys to buy in amid reports he reached out to Deion Branch. We’ll know for sure if they go down to Atlanta and steal one.
6. Bengals (2-1): Going toe-to-toe with the Pack is no small feat. Marvin Lewis celebrated his 55th birthday in style and moves up as a reward. Underrated at No. 6.
7. 49ers (1-2): Jim Harbaugh’s group appears to be in free-fall mode. Is there a blueprint on Colin Kaepernick? He needs to adjust if he wants to be elite. This is a must win game Sunday in St Louis. Won’t be easy.
8. Ravens (2-1): They should get T-Pain to be the mascot because all they do is win. Despite injuries — and now the “party bus” incident — Baltimore doesn’t skip a beat.
9. Texans (2-1): What happened to the D? Still ranked No. 2 in yards allowed, but Houston has just eight sacks and one interception as a team. Pressure and picks win games.
10. Packers (1-2): One fumble return away from being a lot higher on this list. More disturbing was a possible sideline spat between coach Mike McCarthy and quarterback Aaron Rodgers.
11. Chiefs (3-0): Through three games, Kansas City hasn’t coughed the ball up yet. That, and Justin Houston is stating case for Defensive Player of the Year.
12. Dolphins (3-0): Miami won’t wow you with their statistics, not appearing in the top-10 in a lot of key categories. They do all the little things well — well-coached, efficient, resilient.
13. Falcons (1-2): A preseason Super Bowl favorite has been plagued with high-profile injuries. Even so, the offense is still potent enough for Atlanta to make a lot of noise and get this fixed.
14. Colts (2-1): We can’t say enough about the Indy front office for the way they rebuilt this team, that rings true before the Trent Richardson trade. The Colts put the entire NFL on notice with that statement win in San Fran.
15. Cowboys (2-1): The best of a bad NFC East may come back to reality soon. That being said, there’s no denying an offense averaging 27.7 points per game.
16. Lions (2-1): Wow, can we coin the term “DUIP” — driving under the influence of pizza? — after Nate Burleson crashed his car adjusting a box of pie. Another huge loss for a team that was rising.
17. Titans (2-1): The old formula rings true: run the ball and play defense — and hopefully Jake Locker can make a play down the stretch, like he did last week.
18. Rams (1-2): St. Louis won’t win a lot of games with Sam Bradford throwing the ball 48 times. He’s already chucked it up 141 times this season.
19. Chargers (1-2): New coach Mike McCoy is a sharp offensive mind. Bolts’ two losses have come by a combined total of just six points. He’ll figure it out.
20. Eagles (1-2): The Eagles’ offensive line looked almost as gassed as Donovan McNabb after that awkward speech. Three games in 11 days in Chip Kelly’s hyper-speed offense might do that.
21. Panthers (1-2): We understand you are what your record says you are, but Carolina could easily be 3-0 right now. Cam Newton is good, this defense might be better.
22. Cardinals (1-2): Cards earn this spot based solely on the fact that a player — starter Rashad Johnson — lost a piece of his middle finger and kept playing. Now, that’s playing with heart.
23. Steelers (0-3): Ben Roethlisberger and the offense showed flashes last week, especially in his connection with Antonio Brown. This team is very much a work in progress.
24. Browns (1-2): We’re not saying Brian Hoyer is the answer, but he definitely breathed some much-needed life into this perennial doormat. Ride the hot hand.
25. Jets (2-1): No, they are not good. But, Geno Smith showed improvement in his reads and the skill players are getting better — and somehow they have two wins.
Best of the worst: 26. Redskins (0-3); 27. Vikings (0-3); 28. Giants (0-3); 29. Raiders (1-2); 30. Bills (1-2); 31. Buccaneers (0-3); 32. Jaguars (0-3).
Follow Mike Greger on Twitter, too: @mike_greger