Here’s a look at New Arena’s NFL Power Rankings heading into Week 3:
32. Buffalo Bills
Week 2 result: Lost to Los Angeles Chargers 31-20
Up Next: @ Minnesota
Cornerback Vontae Davis retired at halftime during the loss to the Chargers. That’s how bad things are in Buffalo at the moment. In addition to Davis’ decision to leave the team, the Bills had another poor showing. LeSean McCoy left the game due to cracked rib cartilage, and rookie quarterback Josh Allen was all over the place in his first career start. Perhaps the most discouraging takeaway from their loss was the play of their secondary. Arguably the best group on the team, the secondary was torched by Philip Rivers. Rivers went 23-of-27 for 256 yards and three touchdowns. Allen and the Bills are in for another rough week as they travel to Minnesota.
31. Arizona Cardinals
Week 2 result: Lost to Los Angeles Rams 34-0
Up Next: vs. Chicago
Through two weeks, Arizona is clearly one of the most disappointing teams in the league. After being held to six points in their home opener against the Redskins, Arizona failed to move the ball past midfield until late in the fourth quarter against the Rams. An offense featuring David Johnson shouldn’t be held to six points through two games. Sam Bradford has been inept at quarterback — 17 completions for 90 yards — and the pass defense has been underwhelming. It’s only a matter of time before rookie QB Josh Rosen takes over the starting job.
30. New York Giants
Week 2 result: Lost to Dallas 20-13
Up Next: @ Houston
It’s time for the Giants to move on from Eli Manning. The writing has been on the wall for the past three seasons, and the organization has continued to ignore it. Now it is clearer than ever: The Giants are suffering because of their below-average quarterback play. Even with an improved offensive line (Nate Solder), running game (Saquon Barkley) and a healthy Odell Beckham Jr. back in the fold, the Giants offense is pitiful. Maybe another season at the bottom of the NFC East will get the point across.
29. Cleveland Browns
Week 2 result: Lost to New Orleans 21-18
Up Next: vs. New York Jets
Even when the Browns should win a game, they find a new way to blow it. For a second consecutive week, the defense proved they are a good unit. They limited the Saints to three points through the first three quarters of the game. Even then, Cleveland couldn’t pull out a victory due to poor special teams play. A week after missing a would-be game-winning kick against Pittsburgh, Zane Gonzalez went 0-for-2 on extra points and 2-for-4 on field-goal attempts. The Browns should be 2-0 with surprising wins over the Steelers and Saints. Instead, Cleveland is still looking to win their first game in over a year. Facing a rookie quarterback on a short week may be Cleveland’s best chance to capture a victory in quite some time.
28. Detroit Lions
Week 2 result: Lost to San Francisco 30-27
Up Next: vs. New England
The Lions looked more like themselves in Week 2. Matthew Stafford rebounded from a horrible opening week performance with three touchdowns and nearly 350 passing yards. With an angry Patriots’ team coming to town, the Lions are in real danger of falling to 0-3 — a mark which could already end their playoff chances. There is still time for Detroit to turn it around, but their early season results aren’t promising.
27. Seattle Seahawks
Week 2 result: Lost to Chicago 24-17
Up Next: vs. Dallas
Seattle’s offensive struggles continued in Chicago. Russell Wilson was pummeled throughout the night. Seattle’s shoddy offensive line was overwhelmed by Chicago’s pass-rush, thus resulting in six sacks. Wilson sorely missed star wide-out Doug Baldwin. The Bears were able to load the box and force Wilson to beat them with his arm. Seattle must win their Week 3 home-opener against Dallas if it has any chance of contending for a playoff spot in the loaded NFC.
26. Oakland Raiders
Week 2 result: Lost to Denver 20-19
Up Next: @ Miami
Jon Gruden is still searching for his first victory following his 10-year hiatus. There were a few promising signs for Oakland in their loss to the Broncos. Gruden put together a solid game-plan in the first half for the second week in a row, resulting in a 12-0 lead at the break. Derek Carr was incredibly efficient — 29-of-32 — and the offensive line protected Carr well (one sack). The most encouraging take away from this week has to be Amari Cooper’s inclusion in the offense. The highly-talented receiver caught 10 passes for 116 yards. Oakland could have easily pulled out a victory, and should feel confident heading into Miami.
25. New York Jets
Week 2 result: Lost to Miami 20-12
Up Next: @ Cleveland
The Jets were flying high following their impressive Week 1 win in Detroit. Week 2 served as a gentle reminder that quarterback Sam Darnold is only a rookie, and thus is still prone to growing pains. Darnold threw two interceptions, and seemed a bit more uncomfortable than he did against the Lions. For a second week in a row, the defense performed well — causing three fumbles and recovering two of them. New York faces a stiff test this week in Cleveland. This contest is far from a ‘gimme’.
24. Houston Texans
Week 2 result: Lost to Tennessee 20-17
Up Next: vs. New York Giants
It may be time to pump the breaks on Houston’s hype train. Deshaun Watson took a long time to get going against Tennessee. He doesn’t appear to be as confident as he was last year since coming off his ACL injury. There is far too much talent on the Texans’ roster to perform this poorly.
23. Indianapolis Colts
Week 2 result: Defeated Washington 21-9
Up Next: @ Philadelphia
After a poor showing against Cincinnati, the Colts’ defense stifled Washington’s offense. The Colts allowed a paltry 65 yards on the ground, and held the Skins to three field goals on the day. The offense wasn’t clicking on all cylinders but Andrew Luck still led the Colts to three touchdowns. This was a promising victory for Indianapolis as it gets set to take on the reigning Super Bowl Champs.
22. Dallas Cowboys
Week 2 result: Defeated New York Giants 20-13
Up Next: @ Seattle
The Cowboys’ defense dominated their annual Sunday Night matchup with the Giants, sacking Eli Manning six times on the evening whilst forcing the washed-up quarterback into 17 check-downs. Dak Prescott is at his best when incorporated into the running game. The Cowboys played to that advantage well this week. Prescott accumulated a 6.4 yard-per-carry average (45 rushing yards)
in addition to throwing for 160 and one touchdown. A win in Seattle could go a long way in cementing this team as a contender in the East.
21. Washington Redskins
Week 2 result: Lost to Indianapolis 21-9
Up Next: vs. Green Bay
A week after dominating the Cardinals in all facets of the game, Washington struggled to get going offensively in their home opener. Adrian Peterson was held to 20 yards rushing on 11 carries. Alex Smith took care of the ball, but there is no excuse in only scoring nine points (at home) against a below-average defense. The defense did well to pick off two passes, but Smith and company couldn’t convert those extra opportunities into touchdowns. Their performance next week against a hobbled Aaron Rodgers will be very telling.
20. Tennessee Titans
Week 2 result: Defeated Houston 20-17
Up Next: @ Jacksonville
Tennessee picked up its first win of the season, but it wasn’t an overly-inspiring performance. The offense only managed to put 13 points on the board (including two fourth-quarter field goals) to overcome an underwhelming Houston squad. Without Marcus Mariota and Delanie Walker available, the Titans could only muster 183 yards through the air. If they have any chance of upsetting the Jaguars this week, they will need Mariota to start at quarterback this weekend.
19. San Francisco 49ers
Week 2 result: Defeated Detroit 30-27
Up Next: @ Kansas City
Jimmy Garoppolo greatly improved his play following a start against the Vikings. Jimmy G was pressured for much of the game — sacked six times — but still completed 18-of-26 passes for 206 yards and two touchdowns. Matt Breida rushed for 138 yards and a touchdown. After two weeks, Breida is the NFL’s leading rusher. The play of former first-round pick DeForest Buckner has been very encouraging thus far. Buckner has accrued 3.5 sacks thus far, and has unquestionably been the team’s best pass-rushing threat off the edge.
18. Baltimore Ravens
Week 2 result: Lost to Cincinnati 34-23
Up Next: vs. Denver
An incredibly poor start cost the Ravens against the Bengals. Three A.J. Green touchdowns put the Ravens in a 21-0 hole less than a quarter and half into the game. Joe Flacco had another solid performance, airing it out for 376 yards and two touchdowns. However, three Flacco turnovers were converted into 10 Cincinnati points. The Ravens should factor heavily into a convoluted AFC North.
17. Chicago Bears
Week 2 result: Defeated Seattle 24-17
Up Next: @ Arizona
On Monday night, the Bears’ impressive defense sacked Russell Wilson six times, forced three fumbles, and took an interception to the house. Mitchell Trubisky will have to do a much better job protecting the ball going forward — as he was picked off twice and was lucky to avoid at least one more. Thus far, Khalil Mack, Allen Robinson, and Trey Burton have all proved to be tremendous additions to the team. Although they are most likely disappointed to not be 2-0, Chicago has a chance to climb above .500 when they visit the downtrodden Cardinals next weekend.
16. Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Week 2 result: Defeated Philadelphia 27-21
Up Next: vs. Pittsburgh
You would be hard-pressed to find one person who believed the Buccaneers would open the season with wins over the Saints and Eagles. The biggest reason for Tampa’s shocking start? QB Ryan Fitzpatrick. The Harvard graduate leads the NFL with 819 passing yards, eight touchdown passes, and holds a 78.7 completion percentage. What the Bucs have done so far is remarkable. If the Bucs can beat Pittsburgh on Monday night, they may finally convince everyone they are a serious threat.
15. Miami Dolphins
Week 2 result: Defeated New York Jets 20-12
Up Next: vs. Oakland
After going into the Meadowlands and coming away with the victory, the Miami Dolphins are in sole possession of first place in the AFC East for the first time since 2010. Ryan Tannehill was productive both through the air and running the ball for Miami. The Dolphins will be favored over the Raiders in Week 3 and have a good chance of entering their Week 4 battle with the Patriots at 3-0.
14. Denver Broncos
Week 2 result: Defeated Oakland 20-19
Up Next: @ Baltimore
Denver doesn’t lose in September. Over the past six years, the Broncos have only lost one September game. A blocked extra-point attempt and a late game-winning field goal gave the Broncos a one-point victory over heated rival Oakland. Phillip Lindsay has been a surprising force in the backfield. Lindsay ran for 107 yards and currently ranks third in the NFL in rushing yards. A defensive battle with the Ravens awaits this weekend. Regardless of the outcome, the Broncos have shown they will be a tough team to play.
13. Pittsburgh Steelers
Week 2 result: Lost to Kansas City 42-37
Up Next: @ Tampa Bay
After a disappointing season-opening tie in Cleveland, the Steelers hoped to notch their first victory when the Chiefs came to town. Instead, the once-vaunted defense allowed Patrick Mahomes to throw for six touchdowns. The Le’Veon Bell situation has no end in sight. Antonio Brown reportedly was also a no-show on Monday. Pittsburgh has to have a good showing in Tampa this week to avoid a potential catastrophe.
12. Cincinnati Bengals
Week 2 result: Defeated Baltimore 34-23
Up Next: @ Carolina
Cincinnati is 2-0, and looking like a contender in the AFC. Andy Dalton threw for four touchdowns (three of which went to A.J. Green) in the Bengals’ win over Baltimore. Starting running back Joe Mixon is expected to miss 2-4 weeks due to minor knee surgery. This is about the only bit of bad news for Marvin Lewis’ team at the moment.
11. New Orleans Saints
Week 2 result: Defeated Cleveland 21-18
Up Next: @ Atlanta
The loss to Tampa Bay doesn’t look as bad as it did a week ago. However, that doesn’t mean the start to the season is any less disappointing for New Orleans. The Saints were lucky to beat Cleveland — as it took four missed kicks from Zane Gonzalez to avoid being 0-2. However, this shouldn’t come as much of a surprise. Over the last three seasons, the Saints lost their first two games. Last year, they rattled off eight victories following their poor start. Who’s to say that won’t be the case this year?
10. Carolina Panthers
Week 2 result: Lost to Atlanta 31-24
Up Next: vs. Cincinnati
Cam Newton was great against the Falcons. He compiled 377 total yards and three touchdowns. Christian McCaffrey also continues to be explosive. However, Carolina just couldn’t string together enough stops. Playing in arguably the best division in all of football, it is imperative to win the games you are supposed to win. One such game for the Panthers is coming up this weekend. Although the Bengals enter the game 2-0, Carolina will be favored to win. They can’t afford to slip up at home and risk falling two games behind a division foe.
9. Los Angeles Chargers
Week 2 result: Defeated Buffalo 31-20
Up Next: @ Los Angeles Rams
There is nothing like playing the abysmal Buffalo Bills to get a team back on track. Philip Rivers was astounding — going 23-of-27 with three touchdowns. The defense also had two takeaways. With the Chiefs and Broncos off to 2-0 starts, the Chargers don’t have too much room for error. In what should be the best game of the week, the Chargers head to the Coliseum to take on their future roommates. A win against the Rams could signal the arrival of a team ready to challenge the likes of Jacksonville, New England, Kansas City and Pittsburgh in the AFC.
8. Green Bay Packers
Week 2 result: Tied Minnesota 29-29
Up Next: @ Washington
While clearly limited by his knee, Aaron Rodgers did enough to keep the Packers in the game — a game which they should have won in regulation…and then should have lost in overtime. With tough division games against the Bears and Vikings now in the rear-view, Rodgers will likely welcome the upcoming game versus the Redskins. The Packers best bet for any success is to keep Rodgers upright. If he is consistently sacked four times per game, this season can end on a very sour note.
7. Atlanta Falcons
Week 2 result: Defeated Carolina 31-24
Up Next: vs. New Orleans
Matt Ryan accounted for four touchdowns in the win over Carolina — including two on the ground. Tevin Coleman looks like the best back on the roster, and the Falcons finally overcame their red zone failures. The main thing working against Atlanta thus far is the rash of injuries they’ve suffered on defense. They have no time to relax, as the Saints come to Atlanta looking to right the ship.
6. New England Patriots
Week 2 result: Lost to Jacksonville 31-20
Up Next: @ Detroit
It is never wise to count out the Patriots. Though after being throttled by the Jaguars, the accusations of their demise will begin. Rob Gronkowski was rendered useless by Jacksonville’s vicious defense. New England will most likely win 10-12 games once again, but the air of invincibility seems to be fading fast.
5. Philadelphia Eagles
Week 2 result: Lost to Tampa Bay 27-21
Up Next: vs. Indianapolis
Not even the Super Bowl champions could slow down Ryan Fitzpatrick and the electric Buccaneers. While the loss isn’t pretty, the Eagles have shown they will not let anyone run on them. They held Tampa to only 43 yards on 23 carries a week after holding Atlanta to 74 yards on the ground. Carson Wentz is due to make his return in Week 3, and thus should provide the Eagles with a welcomed spark.
4. Minnesota Vikings
Week 2 result: Tied Green Bay 29-29
Up Next: vs. Buffalo
Kirk Cousins led the Vikings to three touchdowns in an incredible fourth quarter performance. Trailing Green Bay by 13 entering the fourth, Cousins connected with Stefon Diggs for two scores, and found Adam Thielen with 31 seconds left to send the game to overtime. Minnesota only came away with a tie due to a missed field goal at the end of overtime. Daniel Carlson was cut after the game as a result. In his place, the Vikings signed Dan Bailey to take over the kicking duties.
3. Kansas City Chiefs
Week 2 result: Defeated Pittsburgh 42-37
Up Next: vs. San Francisco
Patrick Mahomes proved he’s the real deal in Pittsburgh. Following up a four touchdown performance in his debut, the Chiefs signal-caller ripped apart the Steelers’ defense to the tune of six touchdowns and 42 points. Travis Kelce and Sammy Watkins both had over 100 yards, Tyreek Hill added 90, and Kareem Hunt averaged 4.2 YPC. If the Chiefs have an Achilles’ Heel, it is their defense. They allowed 37 points after allowing 28 to the Chargers in Week 1. There is no reason to believe the Chiefs won’t continue to produce the rest of the way, but they will need better play defensively to assure themselves a spot in the postseason.
2. Jacksonville Jaguars
Week 2 result: Defeated New England 31-20
Up Next: vs. Tennessee
What a statement. The Jags completely dominated the Patriots in a rematch of last year’s AFC Championship Game. Jacksonville built a 24-3 lead on the Pats, and never left the game in doubt. If they continue to play like they did against New England, we may be seeing the next great AFC team.
1. Los Angeles Rams
Week 2 result: Defeated Arizona 34-0
Up Next: vs. Los Angeles Chargers
The Rams were so dominant against the Cardinals, that it was almost boring to watch. Los Angeles’ defense didn’t allow Arizona past midfield until the last drive of the game — and even the Cardinals only reached the opponent’s 46 yard-line. Sam Bradford finished the game with only 90 passing yards, and running back David Johnson was held to 48 yards on the ground. The Chargers should offer the Rams their first true test of the season in Week 3. At this point, the Rams look deserving of being the Super Bowl favorites.
Image Source: Tommy Gilligan/USA TODAY Sports