We’ve officially passed the halfway point of the NFL season. Where are we at right now? The Redskins are atop the NFC East, the Bears are tied with Minnesota at the top of the NFC North, and the Jaguars are 3-5. You know, things we expected.
On paper, there weren’t a ton of surprises in Week 9. The Rams lost for the first time, Tom Brady won the elite QB battle, and the Raiders are really, really bad.
Number Five – Los Angeles Chargers
If there was any doubt of the Chargers being good, they put that to rest Sunday. They went in front of a tough Seattle crowd and took care of business.
Melvin Gordon rushed for 100+ yards for the third time in four weeks, and the Chargers won their fourth straight.
Putting it in perspective, the Chargers are 6-2 with a 12 point loss to the Rams and a 10 point loss to the Chiefs. Not bad. They should dismantle a helpless Raiders team this week.
Number Four – Kansas City Chiefs
I can already hear the majority of people reading this, Chiefs fans, yelling. Let me explain.
I’ve consistently had the Chiefs ranked over the Saints. With their win this week, I think you can understand why they are now rightfully above the Chiefs.
While you can argue they’re still better than the Patriots, they lost to the Patriots. I don’t have to explain this one any further.
So why are they worse than the Rams? Defense, as has been the case all season long. The Browns put 388 total yards of offense on the Chiefs. Baker Mayfield, who averaged 215 passing yards against the Chargers, Bucs, and Pittsburgh, was three yards shy of 300 for the game. The defense has gotten better, but they’re still not good.
A matchup with Arizona in Arrowhead this week is an easy one.
Number Three – Los Angeles Rams
The Rams finally see what being on the losing side is like. The loss was far from a bad one.
They were down 35-17 to a Saints team that was absolutely rolling in the first half, it was 35-35 with 9:48 to go in the game. One takeaway, Marcus Peters isn’t very good by himself in the secondary. When the Rams get Aqib Talib back, things change. Will it make a big difference? Maybe not, but it’ll certainly help.
The offense again showed what we already knew, they’re good.
They’ll look to bounce back against Seattle this week.
Number Two – New England Patriots
After starting the season 1-2, the Patriots have won six straight. Damn.
Did this game prove Tom Brady is by and far better than Aaron Rodgers? No. Did this game prove the Patriots are better than the Packers? Absolutely.
The thing that puts the Patriots above a lot of teams is the ‘Next Man Up’ mentality. James White went down for a short time, in stepped Cordarrelle Patterson, and he looked really damn good. White was again involved in the receiving game, Josh Gordon had a huge game, and Julian Edelman, receiving and passing, had a good game.
They’ve got the Titans this week, who are coming off a good win over the…you know what, I don’t want to talk about it.
Number One – New Orleans Saints
Quite the leap in the rankings, but I don’t think anyone can argue the Saints looked like the best team in the league Sunday.
There are two kinds of NFL fans. The fans that think Michael Thomas is a top-five NFL receiver, and the fans that are wrong. Shoutout Joe Horn.
Drew Brees picked apart a depleted Rams secondary. The defense nearly gave the game away, but a top-five NFL receiver saved the day.
That was a great game. If we got to see that game again in the NFC Championship, you would hear no complaints from me.