Welcome back, football! Oh how we missed you so much.
Week 1 of the 2023 NFL season certainly did not disappoint. Highlight reel plays. Hilarious bloopers and brain farts. Crazy finishes. And to think we have 17 weeks of this left until the playoffs commence.
With that all said, let’s dive into how all 32 teams stack up against each other heading into Week 2:
32. Arizona Cardinals (32)
Credit to the Cardinals for playing their tails off under Jonathan Gannon in his NFL coaching debut. But as expected, the limited offense was easily overmatched by the Washington Commanders’ suffocating defense on Sunday.
Tougher QB opponents await the Redbirds, but they showed some fight in Week 1 of what figures to be a long season. That counts for something.
31. Indianapolis Colts (31)
Anthony Richardson flashed his dual-threat abilities and led Indy with 40 rushing yards, but he also threw an interception and was sacked four times.
When all was said and done, the Colts fell 31-21 to the heavily-favored Jacksonville Jaguars. This is a year of growing pains in Indianapolis, but at least Richardson gives this fanbase something that’s fun to watch.
30. Houston Texans (30)
CJ Stroud just had no chance whatsoever against that stingy Baltimore defense. The Texans’ banged-up o-line was helpless, and Stroud had nobody but Nico Collins to feed the ball to in the passing game.
DeMeco Ryans oughta be happy with how his defense mostly contained Lamar Jackson. Will Anderson Jr. was a beast in his NFL debut, with six tackles and one sack.
29. Chicago Bears (27)
The Bears were outclassed in every aspect by their archrivals, allowing 38 points to a team with a QB making his second NFL start. Prized offseason addition DJ Moore had two catches for 25 yards, and the rebuilt front seven was practically non-existent.
28. Carolina Panthers (25)
Bryce Young’s NFL debut was nothing short of a flop: 20 of 38 for 146 yards, one touchdown and two interceptions.
Young looked completely confused and lost against an Atlanta secondary that, ahem, has been one of football’s worst for more than a decade now.
27. Denver Broncos (22)
Russell Wilson certainly looked more efficient and confident in Sean Payton’s offense…but there’s never time for moral losses in football. The Broncos gave this game away to the Raiders despite committing zero turnovers and despite allowing just 261 total yards.
Will Lutz missed a field goal and an extra point, and those proved costly. We know Denver was missing top wideout Jerry Jeudy, but putting up just 16 points against a woeful Raiders defense is inexcusable. And to think this was supposed to be one of the easier games on the Broncos’ 2023 schedule…
26. New York Giants (14)
What in the world WAS THAT?!
Three turnovers. Seven sacks allowed on Daniel Jones. Six penalties for 72 yards. Held the Dallas Cowboys’ vaunted offense to just 265 yards on nine offensive possessions. And the result was….a humiliating 40-0 shutout loss at home?
Um, okay then. The Giants had how long to prepare for this game again?
Because they were a playoff team a year ago, and because it’s only Week 1, we’re obviously not sticking a fork in the Giants just yet. Luckily, they get the Cardinals on the road in Week 2.
It can’t get any worse than what we saw on Sunday. There’s a bright spot.
25. Washington Commanders (26)
Sam Howell had an uneven performance in Week 1, but it was the Commanders’ D that did the heavy lifting in the club’s 20-16 win over Arizona. FedExField was a sellout, and Washington fans really brought a playoff-like atmosphere for that game. Such is life when Dan Snyder is out of the picture.
The Josh Harris ownership era is certainly off to a promising start. Now let’s see if the Commanders can carry the momentum to Mile High City when they visit the Broncos on Sunday afternoon.
24. Las Vegas Raiders (28)
Jimmy Garoppolo was good enough to help the Raiders win a defensive slugfest in Denver. He had excellent chemistry with Jakobi Meyers and Davante Adams, who combined for 15 receptions in 147 yards — with Meyers hauling in TWO TDs as well.
Considering that reigning rushing champion Josh Jacobs had just 48 yards on 19 carries, the Raiders oughta be happy with the win — even if it wasn’t pretty. The Silver and Black will get the chance to make a statement when they visit the Buffalo Bills on Sunday.
23. Tennessee Titans (20)
If Tannehill doesn’t improve, and quickly, Mike Vrabel has to give rookie Will Levis a shot, no?
22. New England Patriots (19)
The Patriots kept it close against a far superior Eagles team, but Bill Belichick is the first guy who will tell you that moral losses aren’t a thing at this level.
Mac Jones outplayed Jalen Hurts, whom the Pats’ D did a masterful job containing. But Jones’ pick-six, curious fourth-down play-calling and woeful pass protection resulted in a 25-20 New England loss.
Coulda-shoulda-woulda has been a common theme for the Patriots in the post-Tom Brady era. The sky will really start to fall in Foxborough if the Pats can’t take down their longtime Kryptonite, the Miami Dolphins, on Sunday.
21. Minnesota Vikings (20)
We’ve spent all offseason ripping the Vikings’ defense which could be even worse than the unit that ranked 28th in scoring a year ago.
Fortunately, the Vikings still have Justin Jefferson and Kirk Cousins to headline a potent offense. And with Aaron Rodgers out of the NFC North, the Vikes’ chances of repeating as division champs are that much better.
We don’t classify them as a true Super Bowl contender, but they’re good enough to at least push for double digit wins and a wild card spot.
20. Pittsburgh Steelers (13)
We don’t want to jump into annual Week 1 overreactions, but that was a very uninspiring effort by a usually well-coached Steelers team on Sunday. They had no answer on either side of the ball for the San Francisco 49ers, who pummeled Pittsburgh into submission with a 30-7 win at Acrisure Stadium.
An 0-2 start in this loaded AFC will immediately put their playoff hopes on ice.
19. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (29)
The Bucs kept a high-powered Vikings offense in check for most of the contest, and Baker Mayfield played mistake-free football in a 20-17 Tampa Bay victory.
That’s how the Bucs are gonna have to win this year. Mayfield isn’t Tom Brady, and the rest of the offense has its limitations. If Baker can excel in a game-manager role, and if the defense plays like it did on Sunday, the Bucs will definitely contend for the NFC South division crown.
18. Atlanta Falcons (24)
The Falcons won the old-school way: With a smash-em-in-the-mouth defense and a prolific rushing game that racked up 130 yards and two touchdowns on just 26 carries.
Considering how quiet Atlanta’s passing game was, they have to be especially encouraged with a 24-10 win over a division rival in the Panthers. Just imagine if Desmond Ridder can find a way to get in a rhythm with Kyle Pitts and Drake London…
17. Seattle Seahawks (8)
The Seahawks aren’t strangers to slow starters, so we’ll put extra emphasis on the “time to turn the page” phrase here. You know their defense and star-studded offense will get better.
16. New Orleans Saints (17)
It wasn’t pretty, but Derek Carr’s 305-yard day and TD strike to Rashid Shaheed was more than enough for New Orleans to grind out a tight 16-15 win over Tennessee.
You just know that Carr will get better in this offense – especially when Alvin Kamara returns. This just in: That Chris Olave guy is pretty good too, having hauled in eight catches for 112 yards.
15. New York Jets (11)
After a win like that, we’d like to put the Jets higher, but that’s tough to do knowing they’ll have to rely on Zach Wilson the rest of the way.
The good news is their defense is good enough to win them some games. And they still have a ton of playmakes on offense. If they can pull off the win in Dallas, we’ll start showing this version of the Jets a lot more respect.
14. Green Bay Packers (21)
Aaron Rodgers who?! Coach of the Week honors should go to Matt LaFleur, because his Packers came to play on Sunday, alright.
Jordan Love had 245 passing yards and three touchdowns without an interception. Aaron Jones, Luke Musgrave, Romeo Doubs and Jayden Reed all made big plays in the passing game…and to think Christian Watson hasn’t even suited up yet!
13. Buffalo Bills (5)
Ugly loss for the Bills, especially after Aaron Rodgers went out. In the end, it doesn’t matter who the other team’s quarterback is when your QB is turning the ball over four times.
The good news is it’s just week one. This team is way too talented. They have a chance to bounce back with games against the Raiders and Commanders over the next two weeks…
If they lose those, it’s time to hit the panic button.
12. Los Angeles Chargers (12)
In this latest edition of “Chargers gonna Chargers”, JC Jackson committed a 30-yard defensive PI penalty with no time remaining in the first half which set up a Miami go-ahead field goal. And the Dolphins went on to win by two.
That’s just the Chargers for you. Justin Herbert was solid as always, and the ground game racked up 234 yards against a stingy Miami D. But the defense allowed 466 yards passing to Tua Tagovailoa and failed to record a single sack.
Looks like Herbert is gonna have to be Superman again for the Bolts to win games.
11. Los Angeles Rams (23)
The Rams have won a lot of big games under Sean McVay, but the Week 1 shellacking in Seattle will go right up there as one of his greatest statement victories.
The Rams crushed the Seahawks in every aspect of the game. Matt Stafford lit it up with Tutu Atwell and Puka Nacua, who both finished with 119 yards. If that’s a preview of what’s to come in La La Land…just you wait until Cooper Kupp returns.
10. Cincinnati Bengals (4)
Try not to worry too much, Bengals fans. We know Joe Burrow stunk it up in Cleveland, but dare we remind you that these Bengals started 0-2 last year — only to finish 12-4 en route to an AFC title game appearance?
Not gonna worry yet. The Browns have been giving Burrow issues since his rookie year. And the soaking conditions in Cleveland didn’t help matters. Do not hit the panic button. It’s all going to be okay.
9. Cleveland Browns (18)
Deshaun Watson had another lackluster outing as the Browns’ QB, but it didn’t matter whatsoever. The Nick Chubb-led ground game had 206 yards, and the rebuilt Cleveland D held Joe Burrow and company to just three points.
Jim Schwartz’s debut as Cleveland’s DC couldn’t have gone any better. If that’s just a preview, then this D could very well be a top-five unit in 2023.
8. Detroit Lions (15)
Sorry Mike Tirico, but Thursday’s win in Kansas City carries no “asterisk here. Yes, KC was missing Travis Kelce and Chris Jones, but it’s not like KC was without Patrick Mahomes or its five starters on the o-line.
Dan Campbell’s Lions played near-perfect situational football, grinding out a 21-20 win thanks to a suffocating D and a prolific ground game. And with that, the Lions are 1-0 for the first time since 2017.
7. Miami Dolphins (10)
What a thriller in La La Land. Tua outdueled Justin Herbert, his 2020 NFL Draft QB counterpart, 36-34 in an early candidate for “Game of the year.” Is it too early to suggest that Tyreek might actually hit 2K receiving?
6. Jacksonville Jaguars (9)
Yeah, this is unfair. The Jaguars’ high-powered offense added Calvin Ridley last year in a trade with Atlanta. Then in his Jacksonville debut, Ridley racks up eight catches for 101 yards and a touchdown.
Wasn’t it unfair enough that Trevor Lawrence had Zay Jones, Christian Kirk, Evan Engram and Travis Etienne Jr.?
5. Baltimore Ravens (7)
Congrats to the Ravens and Texans on achieving Scorigami. That’s right, Baltimore’s 25-9 victory marked the first-ever NFL game with that final score.
Though Baltimore won by two scores, we can’t think they’ll be super happy with the offensive performance. Lamar Jackson and company really played down to a highly inferior Houston Texans’ squad.
The offense must be better with a showdown in Cincinnati next on the table.
4. Kansas City Chiefs (1)
No overreactions allowed, Chiefs fans. It was Week 1. They were missing two of their three superstars. They only lost by one point to a quality Detroit team. It happens.
Win or lose in Jacksonville this week, the Chiefs will be just fine one way or another.
3. Dallas Cowboys (6)
WOW, is that defense gonna be a problem this year.
Dak Prescott only had 13 completions for 143 yards and no passing TDs…and his Cowboys won 40-0 in New York?! Wowza. Dan Quinn’s defense just never gave the Giants a chance, and the league’s No. 1 team in takeaways over the last two years forced three from Daniel Jones and company on Sunday night.
Will Dak really have to do much of anything for Dallas to win if their D is gonna be lights-out like that all year?
2. Philadelphia Eagles (2)
Championship teams find ways to win games they might not deserve to win. Case in point: The Eagles in Foxborough on Sunday.
That’s as bad a game as you’ll see from Jalen Hurts, yet the Eagles maintained control and squeaked out a 25-20 win in New England. It’s sure nice having a ferocious pass rush – hello Jalen Carter – to take over and win games when your offense is struggling.
1. San Francisco 49ers (3)
The 49ers had the most complete team performance from start to finish in Week 1. Brock Purdy had two passing touchdowns without an interception.
Who do you think should be No. 1 in the NFL power rankings?
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