Man oh man the NFL was drunk last week. The Browns finally won, the Jags had no answer for the Titans, the BILLS beat the VIKINGS, and the Lions shocked the world Sunday night by handling the Pats with ease.
1-3 was pretty simple this week, but picking No. 4 and 5 was hell. I went a little risky with a pick this week, but they’ve got a chance to prove me right this Sunday.
Number Five – Miami Dolphins
Spoiler alert: This was the risky pick. That’s right, I’ve got the Miami Dolphins in my top five. They’re 3-0, why not? Here’s how they got there:
They beat the Titans, who now have a victory over the Jags (transitive property, folks), the Jets, coming off Sam Darnold’s impressive MNF game, and put together a gritty performance to overcome the Raiders last week.
Throw shade at me while you can, and keep it in your back pocket. They play the Patriots this week. If they get embarrassed, I’m prepared to hear about it. BUT if they win, remember I had them in my top five before it happened.
Number Four – New Orleans Saints
Speaking of gritty performances, Drew Brees and company put together one on Sunday (it also murdered my fantasy team)
They lost Week 1 in a shootout with Tampa Bay as the first sacrificial lamb to face Fitzmagic. They responded with perhaps a lucky win over Cleveland in Week 2, so this ranking could be in question, but I saw a lot of good things in Week 3.
The QB is the anchor for every team, and when Drew Brees is playing well, the Saints are normally playing well. He’s #3 in passing yards through three weeks and Michael Thomas has been a big benefactor of that, who currently leads the league in receiving yards.
The problem for the Saints has been defense. They’re giving up an average of 421 yards per game, third worst in the NFL. To put it simply, the defense has to get off the field for Drew Brees to be able to get on it.
Number Three – Philadelphia Eagles
I dropped the Eagles a spot this week for a combination of underwhelming play and really good Chiefs play (I’ll get to that shortly).
Carson Wentz wasn’t great against the Colts, but considering the injury he’s coming off of, he looked pretty damn good. His play will improve as he gets more time and the Eagles will benefit from that.
They currently lead the league in rushing defense but they also haven’t gone against any terrific backs.
A Titans matchup will be interesting this week. The Titans, as has been mentioned more than once, are coming off a win over the Jags but who knows what their QB situation will look like. Mariota is still sporting the elbow injury and Blaine Gabbert is still in concussion protocol. It’s a mess.
Number Two – Kansas City Chiefs
I have played a lot of Madden in my life, and I’m not sure I could pull off some of the plays Pat Mahomes has.
Aside from Mahomes, Travis Kelce remains one of the top tight ends in the league, Tyreek Hill can use his freakish speed to fool defenses at any given time, Kareem Hunt is still a good running back, and Sammy Watkins has been a welcome addition from the Rams.
All things considered, the Chiefs offense is phenomenal.
But when they go off the field, it’s a disaster.
Simply put, the Chiefs defense is terrible. They give up an average of 474 yards per game, worst in the NFL, and 30.7 points per game, third worst in the NFL. Reports say they are exploring the addition of Earl Thomas, which would be a big help, but he would come at a steep price. Are they willing to give up a first and third round pick for him?
If they want to avoid another postseason disaster, the defense has to be fixed. This week, Mahomes gets a chance to shine in front of the world against the team it all started against, Denver on Monday Night Football.
Number One – Los Angeles Rams
The Rams are far and above the rest of the league thus far with the third-ranked offense and sixth-ranked defense.
Todd Gurley is fourth in the league with 255 rushing yards, Jared Goff is fifth with 941 passing yards, and Brandin Cooks is fifth with 336 receiving yards.
They never saw a deficit against a Chargers team still trying to find their groove despite losing a fumble, Goff throwing an interception, and missing a field goal all in the first half. They followed the interception with a defensive drive that ended in a blocked punt returned for a touchdown.
Their defense took a huge hit. Aqib Talib and Marcus Peters both left with injury. Talib is out for at least a month with a high ankle sprain and, thankfully, Peters’ injury isn’t as bad as expected, though a Thursday night game hurts his chances this week.
The Thursday night game against the Vikings should be fun. Minnesota looked completely flat against the Bills, so we’ll see how Mike Zimmer adjusts to face the 3-0 Rams.