SPORTS

NFL Power Rankings Week 3 – Is Anyone Better Than The Pats?

TAGs: New England Patriots, NFL, NFL Power Rankings, Nick Gianatis

NFL Power Rankings Week 3 – Is Anyone Better Than The Pats?We’re prepping for week 3 of the season and one thing has become brazenly apparent already: teams aren’t very good this year. Want to know how I know this? The best team in the league doesn’t even have their two best players active right now and the rest of them just experienced some pretty serious injuries and have no threats to their statusPAt in the elite class.

I promise that the rankings get sorted by Week 4 but until then we have to carry some biases that will inevitably impact how we wager. Remember that all rankings are based on performance in real life and in gambling life, so a team like Seattle which isn’t covering (or playing well) will get dropped despite reputation. As for the rest, you’ll have to read on to find out.

1. New England Patriots (2-0 SU and ATS)

I really don’t know who else to put in this slot. The Patriots have looked outstanding without Tom Brady and Rob Gronkowski, and they’ve still managed to score an average of 27.0 points. Make an argument for another team that looks better than New England right now, and will only get better in two weeks time. You can’t.

Next Game: Houston at New England PK (Thursday Night)

2. Denver Broncos (2-0 SU and ATS)

You want to know why you don’t just shrug your shoulders and go all “whatever” on the quarterback position despite having the best defence in the NFL? Because of injuries. Demarcus Ware is out for a while. Now they have to let Trevor Siemian go crazy, which he might when playing against the Bengals at home.

Next Game: Denver at Cincinnati -3.0

3. Carolina Panthers (1-1 SU and ATS)

To those that truly believed that Josh Norman’s absence would derail the defence, the Panthers are now ranked 15th in pass defence. Last year they finished 11th in yards allowed. They allowed a 56.5 percent completion rate, compared to 60.0 so far this year. Norman is getting torched in Washington, but at least he’s being paid a handsome sum for his troubles. No wonder Carolina didn’t want to overpay him.

Next Game: Minnesota at Carolina -7.5

4. Pittsburgh Steelers (2-0 SU and ATS)

Think about the evolution of Ben Roethlisberger for a moment. He started his career on a really good team and then took over when their aging veterans began to retire one by one. He’s gone through a million permutations of this roster and connected for 500+ catches with three different receivers; a feat that hasn’t been accomplished by any other quarterback. Why is he so good? For one, he’s got a massive canon for an arm, and he’s not afraid to use it. Think about how many young quarterbacks are allowed to unleash hell through the skies at will. Only one comes to mind, and he’s playing against the Steelers this weekend.

Next Game: Pittsburgh -3.5 at Philadelphia

5. New York Jets (1-1 SU and ATS)

It must be weird for…holy crap they’re underdogs at Kansas City?! STOP READING THIS AND GO SMASH THAT LINE RIGHT NOW!

Next Game: NYJ at Kansas City -3.0

6. Arizona Cardinals (1-1 SU and ATS)

The Cardinals could very well be the best overall team in the NFC. I’m not even kidding. I like everything that they do, aside from when Arians tries to get too clever with his playbook. Are you going to be shocked if they win 13 games and get a first round bye? You shouldn’t be. Go bet on them to win the division right now.

Next Game: Arizona -4.0 at Buffalo

7. Cincinnati Bengals (1-1 SU and ATS)

Their matchup with the Steelers was a lot more civil without Vontaze Burfict in the mix. By the way, if and when him and Eiffert come back, the Bengals are one of the best teams in the league. Both are that important.

Next Game: Denver at Cincinnati -3.0

8. Houston Texans (2-0 SU and ATS)

I can’t believe the Texans spent $100 million on Brock Osweiler and Lamar Miller, and the detractors are the ones looking stupid.

Next Game: Houston at New England PK (Thursday Night)

9. Minnesota Vikings (2-0 SU and ATS)

Chris Collinsworth going bananas about Sam Bradford this past weekend was something else. “It’s unbelievable! I mean this is a guy who got drafted first overall in 2010, has now played for three teams in six seasons, came in to Week 2 on a Monday Night and played football, in a different jersey, on a new team, when we just figured out what’s up with Jupiter and the Emmy’s were on at the same time! I’ve never seen a player perform that well under those very specific circumstances EVER IN MY LIFE!”

Next Game: Minnesota at Carolina -7.5

10. New York Giants (2-0 SU and ATS)

I can’t get my head around this defence. They’re good I think? One of the dangers of handicapping is looking a gift horse in the mouth and saying “I’d like to overanalyze your teeth for a week first”. The Giants are winning, probably underrated and covering. What more do you want? Just keep doubling down until it doesn’t pay out anymore.

Next Game: Washington at NYG -4.5

11. Green Bay Packers (1-1 SU and ATS)

Either the Vikings are really freaking amazing, or the Green Bay Packers are once again lurking around as frauds. Remember how lucky they were last year? Well the football gods haven’t.

Next Game: Detroit at Green Bay -8.0

12. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (1-1 SU and ATS)

You know what’s more fun than watching people who preemptively jumped on the Bucs bandwagon bail like the thing is infected with the Zika virus? Seeing the reactions of fantasy owners who thought Jameis was ready for the leap.

Next Game: Los Angeles at Tampa Bay -4.5

13. San Diego Chargers (1-1 SU and 2-0 ATS)

Don’t think they deserve to be this high? Well neither does anyone else on the planet. I love Phillip Rivers and his mere presence shores up a lot of holes that they have otherwise. Watching him adjust this past weekend to losing Keenan Allen was marvelous, and this guy knows how to shovel a dumpster. You can trust the Chargers far more than the oddsmakers are the public will.

Next Game: San Diego at Indianapolis -2.5

14. Philadelphia Eagles (2-0 SU and ATS)

As you may remember from last season, I’m big on letting quarterbacks loose. You have to. If you coddle them too much, you get damaged goods like Ryan Tannehill or sheltered little babies like Tyrod Taylor who aren’t allowed to cross the street without being covered in Styrofoam. You either give him a clipboard for a few years and hope for the best, or you just let him go out there and sling it. That’s why you draft him in the first round, right? So kudos to the Eagles for giving Carson Wentz room to breathe. Hopefully the Pittsburgh Steelers won’t act like a chloroform rag this weekend.

Next Game: Pittsburgh -3.5 at Philadelphia

15. Detroit Lions (1-1 SU and ATS)

Detroit is an oddsmakers dream. Lots of offensive firepower, a veteran quarterback that almost everyone is high on and a defence that can’t get any stops when they need them. The Lions are in a precarious position. I’m still not prepared to give up on them, and a lot of their 2016 campaign will be decided against Green Bay.

Next Game: Detroit at Green Bay -8.0

16. Baltimore Ravens (2-0 SU and ATS)

Be careful when getting lured in by the Ravens. You think they’re good, and then you remember that they beat Cleveland’s backup quarterbacks (all of them!) by just five points. This is why Flacco is never considered “elite”. The Ravens struggle to consistently blow opponents out of the water. Tight lines are your friend with this team.

Next Game: Baltimore -1.0 at Jacksonville

17. Seattle Seahawks (1-1 SU and 0-2 ATS)

For the past half-decade there’s been a growing emphasis on having a great offensive line. They’re the most reliable draft picks by position. They protect all the other things you invest in. Defensive players are getting really, really good so you need guardians up front who can diffuse them.

The median that NFL teams will spend is around $22 million for an offensive line, or roughly 15% of their cap. That’s around $2.4 million per player including the reserves.

So will someone please tell me why the Seattle Seahawks spent just $8.5 million this year on their offensive line? This budget offensive line faces a great front-seven like San Francisco’s. It’s like tricking out a Kia. It’s still a Kia, guys.

Next Game: San Francisco at Seattle -9.5

18. Oakland Raiders (1-1 SU and ATS)

Spot bet team, pure and simple. The Raiders got lucky in Week 1 in beating a New Orleans team that is obviously overwhelmed. They had a classic letdown performance after an emotional high. You’d like to see more out of a team playing at home, but their Week 3 matchup will do a lot to define how good they (and their opponents) actually are.

19. Dallas Cowboys (1-1 SU and ATS)

There are collective grumblings that Ezekiel Elliott is not that good. The funny part? He’s not! He wasn’t ever meant to be. All of his value was tied to that offensive line. I haven’t seen a running back’s value plummet like this since Bishop Sankey.

Next Game: Chicago at Dallas -7.0 (Sunday Night)

20. Tennessee Titans (1-1 SU and ATS)

A lot changed for Tennessee this past summer. They went from having no running backs to having two exceptional ones, a shoddy offensive line to a serviceable one and overhauled the defense on all fronts. A massive culture change also took place. Should they roll Oakland, then the mindset on them has to shift. Lots of positives…just not enough to climb them out of the basement yet.

21. Kansas City Chiefs (1-1 SU and ATS)

It’s unfair to drop Kansas City down this low, but I’m not going to really trust them until I know that Jamaal Charles is healthy and Justin Houston is back. With those two, this is a playoff contending team. Without them, I just don’t know.

Next Game: NYJ at Kansas City -3.0

22. Indianapolis Colts (0-2 SU and ATS)

The Colts never stood a chance against Denver, and that -6.0 point line for the Broncos was as easy money as it gets. I truthfully don’t know how to assess the Colts just yet aside from assuming that they’re as bad as they’ve looked. Why would you have any faith in a team that has no foundational depth?

Next Game: San Diego at Indianapolis -2.5

23. Jacksonville Jaguars (0-2 SU and ATS)

Here’s a fun fact you probably should’ve been told about Jacksonville before last weekend’s game: they hate leaving Florida. The Jaguars went 1-7 SU and 3-4-1 ATS on the road last season. Part of it is that they’re just not good at winning close games. The other part is that they’re not good at winning games in general. Get off this wagon now.

Next Game: Baltimore -1.0 at Jacksonville

24. Washington Redskins (0-2 SU and ATS)

I know that people in Washington are generally down about Kirk Cousins…but who are you going to turn to at this point? Colt McCoy? Whoever Nate Sudfield is? Listen, there are barely enough good starters in the league. Why not try and support Cousins instead of turning on him like a pack of zombies from The Walking Dead. You literally have nothing to lose by being more optimistic.

Next Game: Washington at NYG -4.5

25. Atlanta Falcons (1-1 SU and ATS)

I’m changing my stance on the Falcons. I still think they’re bad. But when they’re on – like they were on Sunday – they’re frustratingly entertaining. Can I have a few more check downs to Austin Hooper please? But when they’re getting crushed, it’s also delightful because they’re so poorly built that you feel like they deserve to lose. In terms of betting, they might be the best OVER team in the league since their defence can’t stop anyone and their offence seems competent enough for about 20 points a game.

Next Game: Atlanta at New Orleans -3.0 (Monday Night)

26. San Francisco 49ers (1-1 SU and ATS)

San Francisco used to be one of the best halftime adjustment teams when Harbaugh was in the house. On Sunday, they were outscored 29-7 in the second half. Sure, they were crushed by the defending conference champs, but that’s worth keeping an eye on. They have no third quarter points in two games so far. Don’t overreact but…ok, well react appropriately.

Next Game: San Francisco at Seattle -9.5

27. New Orleans Saints (0-2 SU and ATS)

I’m halfway out the door with this team. On one hand, they’re supposed to be some sort of offensive juggernaut and I just don’t see that happening when Willie Snead is “the other guy” at receiver. The Saints love botching any game they’re on television for and…oh god they play the Falcons on Monday next week. I can’t. I just can’t do this.

Next Game: Atlanta at New Orleans -3.0 (Monday Night)

28. Los Angeles Rams (1-1 SU and ATS)

If you have any time on Sundays, then take a minute to enjoy Jeff Fisher’s post game press conferences. The man hates doing them to begin with, but all the media wants to know is when Goff is going to start. Fisher doesn’t even try to dodge the question like Zimmer did with Peterson this past Sunday night. He just gets visibly irritated and annoyed and dares media members to ask again…and they do. It’s exciting television and much better than watching a Rams game.

Next Game: Los Angeles at Tampa Bay -4.5

29. Chicago Bears (0-2 SU and ATS)

Great job schedule makers! The Chicago Bears get back-to-back prime time guys! This is exactly what America wanted to do at night for the rest of eternity.

Next Game: Chicago at Dallas -7.0 (Sunday Night)

30. Buffalo Bills (0-2 SU and ATS)

Hot take alert! So a weird thing happened in the Buffalo game when Tyrod Taylor had to undergo the concussion protocol. The refs made him do it. At a pivotal point in the game. Do you think that’s what Denver was trying to do to Cam in Week 1? Is that a new strategy? Not to knock a quarterback out cold, but to at least get him in the protocol during a momentum shifting drive? End hot take.

Next Game: Arizona -4.0 at Buffalo

31. Cleveland Browns (0-2 SU and ATS)

The heavens have heard your suffering, heeded your desperate calls and answered your prayers. Clipboard Jesus is coming to town!

Next Game: Cleveland at Miami -10.0

32. Miami Dolphins (0-2 SU and 1-1 ATS)

Hey guys, there’s a tire fire at the Hard Rock Stadium in South Beach this weekend and they invited the perfect guests.

Next Game: Cleveland at Miami -10.0

Odds Courtesy of http://OddsShark.com (odds current at time of publication)

Comments

views and opinions expressed are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of CalvinAyre.com