Updated: Sept. 26
Cleveland Browns (0-3) - Previously: 28.
I suppose the Browns have to be considered the worst team in the NFL after Indianapolis defeated them, though they lost by just three to the Steelers in Week 1 and didn't have much of a chance against the Ravens after losing their quarterback to migraines. I don't know. I'm disappointed, as Cleveland's offensive line should have the team be more competitive. Perhaps Myles Garrett will be able to play next week. That should help a defense that couldn't contain Jacoby Brissett.
New York Jets (1-2) - Previously: 32.
The Jets are still an epically horrific NFL team, but they managed to beat the Dolphins. This means that their chances of landing Sam Darnold, as seen in the current 2018 NFL Mock Draft - have been reduced.
It's OK, though! Perhaps the Jets don't believe they need to find a long-term answer at the position. Maybe they believe Josh McCown is their long-term solution at quarterback. And hey, they could be right. McCown can certainly play for them for 10, maybe even 12 years. Sure, McCown will be 50 by then, but hey, if the Jets don't think they need Darnold, their next-best option will be riding McCown for the next dozen seasons.
San Francisco 49ers (0-3) - Previously: 30.
The 49ers have now fought hard in two of their three games, covering as underdogs. I'd like to know where this was when I picked them in Week 1 versus the Panthers.
Prior to the game, it was clear that once again, the 49ers' stadium would be empty. This prompted this exchange on Facebook:
Indianapolis Colts (1-2) - Previously: 31.
Last week, I spoke of the dual 0-16 dream between the Jets and Colts. Unfortunately, the dream is over. We've awakened to a cruel reality where we won't have two 0-16 teams. How absolutely horrible.
Jacoby Brissett has been impressive through two games, by the way. I wonder what the Colts will do with him. They could trade him for something viable - he's highly regarded, with Bill Parcells stating that he'll be a solid NFL starter - but I think they should keep him because Andrew Luck hasn't been able to stay healthy.
Cincinnati Bengals (0-3) - Previously: 29.
Overrated NFL Team: I think people were a little too impressed by what the Bengals did at Lambeau. They were battling a skeleton-crew Packer team that basically was willing to accept a loss with a divisional game on Thursday coming up. Cincinnati's offense looked better than last week, but the team scored just three points in two quarters plus overtime after intermission. The blocking still sucks, which is the most important thing in this evaluation.
Los Angeles Chargers (0-3) - Previously: 21.
Overrated NFL Team: It might seem odd that I'd list multiple 0-3 teams as overrated, but people, for some reason, always expect the Chargers to win or at least be competitive. They've been blown out in two of three games thus far - they were trailing the Broncos by 17 in the fourth quarter - and their sole close call came against the Dolphins, who went on to get crushed by the Jets. The Chargers can't block or do anything impressive. Philip Rivers' record in his past 35 games is 9-26. Think about how bad that is. I don't know why, but everyone always makes excuses for the Chargers, but they are just losers. They're the guy who can't get a date and ends up being a 40-year-old virgin. They're the person who gets passed over for promotions. They're the girl who doesn't get asked to the prom. They are losers.
Chicago Bears (1-2) - Previously: 27.
The Bears may have won, but Marcus Cooper nearly cost his team the game with his idiot showboating tactics on the blocked field goal return. That play didn't affect the result, but it easily could have. I still don't understand what Cooper was thinking. Why even slow down before reaching the goal line? What does that do, exactly?
I blame these stupid touchdown celebrations for this. Cooper was probably trying to conjure up what to do when he reached the end zone, so he took his time crossing the goal line. This new rule has been a disaster. We have Odell Beckham Jr. peeing like a dog, and DeSean Jackson doing crazy jigs while down 31-17. The NFL needs to get rid of this nonsense.
At any rate, Chicago would be 2-1 right now had Jordan Howard not dropped a touchdown versus the Falcons. Kind of crazy, right?
Miami Dolphins (1-1) - Previously: 15.
The Dolphins were a huge disappointment, getting shut out against the epically bad Jets until the final play of regulation. It was a humiliating showing, and it could be considered the most embarrassing loss in Dolphins franchise history. I didn't understand what happened until something popped into my head. I think you know what it's time for...
The Adventures of Derek Anderson's Magic Flask!
Jay Ajayi: Hey Jay, you ready for the game!? We got an hour till kickoff!
Jay Cutler: I dunno.
Jarvis Landry: What do you mean, "I dunno?" You're our leader. Show some fire!
Jay Cutler: Meh.
DeVante Parker: Meh? Come on, Jay!? We gonna win today, or what!?
Jay Cutler: Maybe. I dunno.
Jay Ajayi: Coomme on Jayy. Whooaoa whaatt juusst happenened? I feel wooozzzy.
Jarvis Landry: Memmee totoot, I jjuusst toook a ddrrink froorm Gagototadddee boottle anndd whoooaa.
DeVante Parker: I allssoos drriirnk froormm iitt hic!
Jay Cutler: Meh. Don't care. I'm gonna take a nap. If I sleep through kickoff, so be it.
Arizona Cardinals (1-2) - Previously: 19.
I think Bruce Arians has lost his mind. Why did he move Jared Veldheer to right tackle? Why is he challenging obvious calls? Why can't he do basic math? I used to consider Arians a great coach. Unfortunately, not only has he lost a step; he fell down the damn stairs.
Carolina Panthers (2-1) - Previously: 16.
I listed the Panthers as overrated last week, but they were blown out as home favorites against the winless Saints. They are now huge underdogs in New England, so I suppose they aren't overrated anymore.
I'm pretty pissed, by the way. How the hell did Carolina cover -6 at San Francisco in Week 1!? Ever since, the 49ers have covered all of their games, while the Panthers nearly lost to the Bills and then were crushed by the Saints. I had a big play on the 49ers that lost. What the hell!?
Baltimore Ravens (2-1) - Previously: 18.
I listed the Ravens as overrated last week, but I guess I can't do that now in the wake of the embarrassing 44-7 loss. Facebook friend Trevor B. asked me what the hell happened to Baltimore, and this was my response:
"They are missing their best offensive lineman and best defensive lineman, so this is not the same team that started 2-0. This is also the first time they're playing a 9:30 am start whereas the Jags do this every year."
New York Giants (0-3) - Previously: 20.
I can no longer call the Giants overrated, as they're 0-3 (notice a trend, here?) It should be noted, however, that New York only moved the ball because the Eagles lost Fletcher Cox and Jordan Hicks to injury. Had those players remained in the game, New York's offense would've continued to sputter.
How bad was it before Cox and Hicks got hurt? Take a look (thanks, Riley D.):
New Orleans Saints (1-2) - Previously: 26.
Saints rookie tackle Ryan Ramczyk struggled in the season opener, but he looked much better in Week 3. He was a first-round pick, so his improvement isn't a surprise. Still, I think we saw the potential of the Saints when they get their starting tackles back from injury. The offense will be explosive, while the defense has some interesting, young talents, including Marshon Lattimore, who missed the Carolina game.
Houston Texans (1-2) - Previously: 25.
The good news for the Texans is that Deshaun Watson looks awesome. He made some mistakes against the Patriots, but showed some serious potential, indicating that he could become a star quarterback in the NFL. The bad news is that the offensive line sucks, and Watson saw plenty of pressure from a team with almost no pass rush. Things will prove to be more difficult for Watson against better defenses, so hopefully Duane Brown ends his silly holdout soon.
By the way, I'm having a serious problem with Houston's record. I nearly made the team 2-1 twice (once here, one on the Week 4 picks page), and I think I'm going to screw up on one of these instances. My apologies in advance!
Jacksonville Jaguars (2-1) - Previously: 24.
The Jaguars are right in the thick of the playoff race, now owning a 2-1 record. That puts in them in a tie with the Titans, with the Texans and Colts trailing them by just one game. What a highly contested divisional race!!!
To be serious, I have a crazy crackpot theory: What if Roger Goodell has an agreement with the teams to allow the Jaguars to win every time they go to London? I don't see how Jacksonville could be so capable across the pond otherwise. So, what it Goodell had teams intentionally drop games to the Jaguars so that people in London begin rooting for them? Goodell would love this, because if he ever gets the Jaguars to move to London, they'll already have a fan base in place, which means their games will sell out. This would be a strange concept for the Jaguars, who can't even lure Jacksonville citizens to their stadium despite their super cool swimming pool.
Buffalo Bills (2-1) - Previously: 23.
The Bills were a Tyrod Taylor-to-Zay Jones connection away from upsetting the Panthers, meaning they are one drop away from being 3-0. Unreal. Unfortunately for the Bills, they're going to have a heavy dose of reality when they visit the Falcons in Week 4. I don't anticipate that game being close - spoiler alert for my picks! - and neither does Vegas, as it set Atlanta as an eight-point favorite.
Los Angeles Rams (2-1) - Previously: 22.
The Rams have beaten up on two horrible teams thus far, with a loss on a short week coming up sandwiched in between. Next week will be a huge test, as they take on the Cowboys on the road.
By the way, how good is Todd Gurley? I have him in a PPR league, and I was battling my friend Body Burner, who was not pleased at all by his Thursday night performance:
Seattle Seahawks (1-2) - Previously: 11.
Overrated NFL Team: The Seahawks continue to be large favorites, which I don't understand. They can't score at all because their blocking is atrocious. Also, no one seems to be talking about it, but Richard Sherman is playing like crap this season. He is banged up, so this isn't natural regression, but his poor play is still impacting the defense, which has some major issues at cornerback.
Speaking of Sherman, how was he not thrown out of the game for the late hit on Marcus Mariota? He already had one infraction for a personal foul, so shouldn't have a second one prompted his ejection?
Tampa Bay Buccaneers (1-1) - Previously: 9.
I don't want to read too much into Tampa's loss to Case Keenum. Yes, the Buccaneers lost to Casey f***ing Keenum, but they were missing half of their defense because of the flu and other various injuries. That said, Lavonte David's injury hurts, and so will Gerald McCoy's if he's out for a while.
Dallas Cowboys (2-1) - Previously: 10.
Overrated NFL Team: The Cowboys were definitely legitimate in 2016, but I think they'll take a step backward this season. They lost two members of their fantastic offensive line, while three key players in their secondary have departed as well. Now, Orlando Scandrick is banged up. Things won't go as smoothly for the Cowboys in 2017, and that has been apparent thus far. The Cowboys easily could've lost the Cardinals if Arizona didn't commit a billion mistakes.
Washington Redskins (2-1) - Previously: 17.
Was Washington's dominant victory over the Raiders a fluke? Perhaps, but I'm leaning toward no. The offensive line, which has been a disappointment to date, finally lived up to its talent. The Redskins have decided to use Chris Thompson more on offense, which has been a great decision. Meanwhile, some young defensive backs - Kendall Fuller and Montae Nicholson - are really stepping up. Now, if only Terrelle Pryor can live up to the hype.
The Raiders may not have been focused, but a victory that effectively was 27-0 can't be a fluke. If the Redskins won a sloppy 19-16 affair, or something, I might think so, but they absolutely dominated Oakland.
Oh, and speaking of Pryor...
Terrelle Pryor's Race for 1,800:
Current Receiving Yards: 116
Currently on Pace for: 618
Yards Per Game Needed for 1,800: 129.5
Don't give up on Pryor just yet. ESPN analysts really know what they are talking about!
Detroit Lions (2-1) - Previously: 14.
I can't believe what happened in Detroit. The Lions are cursed. There's no other explanation for it. They keep getting screwed in these heart-breaking moments, and this may have been the worst one. The Lions were inches shy of defeating the defending NFC Champions to improve to 3-0. Alas, they lost because of an absolutely horrible rule.
And yes, the rule is horrible. There should not be a 10-second run-off for something like that. Perhaps a five-second run-off makes sense, but we've seen teams snap the ball in fewer than 10 seconds before. The Lions even tweeted out a video in which they covered 27 yards to snap the ball in SEVEN seconds last year! And they didn't have to cover 27 yards. Everyone was close by. I think they could've done it in six, perhaps even five.
Oh, and the 10-second run-off rule probably should've given them one more snap, anyway! Take a look:
Perhaps the senile Walt Coleman should've looked at how much time was on the clock! Derp dee derp!
Unreal. Lions, you deserve better than this. I think Detroit fans should storm Coleman's farm and steal a couple of jugs of milk, just to send a message.
Minnesota Vikings (2-1) - Previously: 13.
I still don't understand how Sam Bradford is hurt. He never suffered an injury in the Saints game. It's like a gust of wind shattered his knee. It's unbelievable. The good news is that the Vikings have a new plan to keep Bradford safe:
By the way, I have to say that I'm saddened by what happened in the NFL this weekend. I don't know if I want to watch professional football anymore. A football world where Case Keenum blows out a potential playoff team is not something I want to be a part of.
Philadelphia Eagles (2-1) - Previously: 8.
Underrated NFL Team: The Eagles won their season opener (against the Redskins, who haven't lost since) and battled the Chiefs extremely tough, yet they still aren't recognized as one of the better teams in the NFL despite having no weaknesses outside of the secondary. The defensive backfield is an issue because Ronald Darby and Rodney McLeod have both suffered injuries. However, the Eagles could have beaten the Chiefs had a series of unfortunate events not have happened; Torrey Smith's dropped touchdown, Darren Sproles' fumbled punt return, Jake Elliott's missed 30-yard field goal, Carson Wentz's late interception off a deflection, Vinny Curry's missed sack of Alex Smith to force a punt in a tie game in the middle of the fourth quarter. I think if the Eagles and Chiefs battled each other 10 times, each team would win on five occasions. Philadelphia could be 3-0 right now, and the team would've blown out the Giants had Fletcher Cox and Jordan Hicks not left the game.
Tennessee Titans (2-1) - Previously: 12.
I was ready to call Marcus Mariota the most disappointing player in the NFL this season when the Titans were either trailing or losing to the Jaguars in the first two-and-a-half quarters. Five-and-a-half quarters later, and the Titans look like a dominant team. They crushed the Jaguars, who went on to blow out the Ravens, and they also posted 33 points on Seattle's supposed stellar defense. I think the opening-week loss to the Raiders threw everyone off their scent. They seem to be one of the best teams in the league, and it helps that Jurrell Casey finally seems like he's recovering from his back injury.
Green Bay Packers (2-1) - Previously: 7.
Underrated NFL Team: The Packers nearly lost to the Bengals, and I think too many people noticed that. However, the victory wasn't completely unimpressive, as the Packers were missing countless starters, including their left tackle, top defensive lineman and best edge rusher. Once the Packers begin getting everyone back - and I have to believe they were conserving some energy for Thursday - they'll start playing on a higher level.
Denver Broncos (2-1) - Previously: 6.
Denver's loss to the Bills was a bit disappointing, but it could have gone differently. The Broncos moved the chains throughout the afternoon, but constantly bogged down in the red zone. Plus, it was an early start time. The Broncos are still a great team, though Trevor Siemian's performance was disconcerting. Siemian's accuracy was horrendous, which was disappointing, considering how impressive he looked in the first two games of the season.
Oakland Raiders (2-1) - Previously: 4.
I am just going to give the Raiders a mulligan for their blowout loss to the Redskins. I think that was more about Washington being better than everyone thought it was, and also Oakland showing up to the game, thinking it was going to win easily. I think that if the Raiders had to play the Redskins again next week on a neutral field, knowing what they know now, they would win the game, though it would be close because the defense absolutely sucks.
Pittsburgh Steelers (2-1) - Previously: 2.
What I wrote last week still applies: "Ben Roethlisberger doesn't seem like himself. He hasn't been terrible, but he looks like he's regressed. Perhaps those are just early-season jitters, but Roethlisberger thought about retiring this offseason, so it's fair to wonder if his head is completely in the game right now."
I considered listing the Steelers as overrated, but they were missing Marcus Gilbert, their talented right tackle, as well as Stephon Tuitt. Pittsburgh will improve once both key players return, but it's really up to Roethlisberger. Will he snap out of his funk?
New England Patriots (2-1) - Previously: 5.
Remember when these people wanted Tom Brady benched two weeks ago?
I know I posted that last week as well, but I don't think I can ever get over that. Again, no one should ever listen to idiots who complain 140 characters at a time.
Brady himself kept the Patriots from losing to a rookie quarterback at home for the first time in the Bill Belichick era. It's amazing that he's still the greatest at 40. The Patriots have many other problems right now, though things will improve once Dont'a Hightower and Marcus Cannon return from injury.
Kansas City Chiefs (3-0) - Previously: 3.
Five of the top six teams in my power rankings last week were road favorites in Week 3. The Steelers lost to the Bears. The Broncos lost to the Bills. The Raiders lost to the Redskins. The Falcons were inches away from losing to the Lions. The Chiefs, however, were the only team that dominated the competition. I considered slotting Kansas City No. 1, but I'm going to keep the Falcons there, as they didn't have right tackle Ryan Schraeder for that game.
Atlanta Falcons (3-0) - Previously: 1.
The Falcons were inches away from losing to the Lions, but they suffered some serious bad luck in that game, with two Matt Ryan interceptions coming off drops. Atlanta outgained Detroit by 1.7 yards per play and didn't even punt until the fourth quarter, so that game could've gotten out of hand. And yet, the Falcons didn't even have their second-best offensive lineman, Ryan Schraeder! I still believe Atlanta is the best team in the NFL.