2011 NFL Power Rankings – Week 5

NFL Power Rankings 2011 Pre 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 Playoffs

Here are our rankings for Week 5 as Aaron Rodgers and the packers remain a unanimous #1, and the 0-4 Vikings slide into the #32 spot:

Rank Team Comment
1 Green Bay Packers The Packers continue to dominate, this time by stomping Denver behind a 6 total TD performance by Aaron Rodgers. Sure, the Packers D has given up a lot of passing yards through the first four games but when you can put up points like GB can, does it really matter?
2 New Orleans Saints The Saints might not be the top team in the NFC, but they’re pretty close. They didn’t put up a ton of points against the Jaguars as was expected, but they won and are tied with TB for the division lead.
3 Detroit Lions The comeback Lions pulled off another stunning second half surge, this time to beat the Cowboys. Megatron has 8 TDs over the first four games and has looked virtually unstoppable on those jump ball deep passes. Any doubt about the Lions being for real should be gone now.
4 Baltimore Ravens The Ravens got a 34-17 win Sunday night in one of the craziest games you’ll ever see. They had 3 defensive touchdowns, and won despite a lackluster performance from the offense that dominated the Rams just a week earlier. With the defense playing this well, they can win regardless, and anything from the offense will be just a bonus.
5 New England Patriots One week removed from a letdown in Buffalo, the Patriots traveled cross-country and beat the Raiders 31-19. Injuries remain a concern on defense as New England prepares to host the Jets.
6 San Diego Chargers After injuring the Dolphins’ Chad Henne, San Diego had a workmanlike show in a 26-16 win over Miami. The Chargers have avoided a slow start so far this year and travel to Denver in Week 5.
7 Houston Texans The season continues to look promising for Houston as they won 17-10 over the Steelers; the Texans continue their strong start and host the Raiders in Week 5.
8 Buffalo Bills If last week’s gutsy win over New England was a coming-out show for the Bills, their collapse and 23-20 loss to the Bengals was a reminder of dark times past. The Bills will hope to rebound when they host the Eagles next weekend.
9 Tampa Bay Bucs It was harder than expected, but the Bucs walked away with a win on Monday night against the Colts. LeGarrette Blount had his best game of the season and will be a big factor in this team’s success moving forward.
10 Tennessee Titans With a 31-13 win over Cleveland, Matt Hasselbeck and the Titans are 3-1 in the AFC South and surprising many onlookers. A big test awaits next weekend as Tennessee travels to play the Steelers.
11 New York Giants The Giants are tied with the Redskins at the top of the NFC East, though wins against the Rams, Eagles and Cardinals are less than impressive. A favorable schedule should keep them in the running for a division title.
12 New York Jets Rex Ryan’s Jets were thoroughly out-“D”‘ed by a Ravens team that was able to score three defensive return touchdowns for the first time in team history in a 31-17 win. Mark Sanchez may not have been wholly to blame for the effort, but much better will be needed next weekend at New England.
13 Washington Redskins As crazy as it might seem, the Redskins are a field goal away from being 4-0. The offense is getting it done when they need to and the defense looks stout. It’ll be interesting to see if they keep it up to contend for a division title.
14 San Francisco 49ers The 49ers had an impressive comeback win against the Eagles to go to 3-1 on the year and take a 2 game lead in the division. The 49ers are the team to beat in the NFC West right now.
15 Pittsburgh Steelers As if things couldn’t get worse after a loss to the Texans, Steelers QB Ben Roethlisberger is now injured, in large part because of terrible offensive line play. It’s a huge issue that they’ll have to correct if they want to get back to the Super Bowl.
16 Atlanta Falcons Atlanta came away with a win against Seattle, but they almost gave the game away and made Tavaris Jackson look like a legit QB. Even though they are 2-2, they don’t look like contenders right now.
17 Oakland Raiders The Raiders’ good fortune against AFC East teams didn’t continue through to this week as they fell 31-19 to the Patriots. It gets no easier in Week 5 as they go on the road to play the Texans.
18 Chicago Bears The Bears held on for a close win over Panthers, another team that inexplicably forgot that that you don’t kick it to Devin Hester. A great sign for the Bears was Matt Forte’s rushing explosion of 205 yards. The Bears will need to play great football to keep pace with their two undefeated division foes.
19 Dallas Cowboys The Cowboys blew a huge lead against the Lions and appear to be headed for another season of underachieving. Fans calling for Tony Romo’s job is not something that Jerry Jones wants to deal with, especially early in the season.
20 Philadelphia Eagles The Dream Team just can’t seem to get things going. A 1-3 start, with the only win being against the Rams, that includes 3 consecutive losses, 2 of which were at home, is not what they were looking for when they made all that noise during the offseason.
21 Cincinnati Bengals Cincinnati notched what might be considered an upset against the surging Bills this weekend. They are still a long way from contending, but the Dalton-Green combo looks like something they can build on.
22 Carolina Panthers It looks like Carolina will be the team this year that doesn’t win many games but will compete with everyone (they haven’t lost by more than a TD so far). Cam Newton is definitely proving worthy of being this years top draft pick.
23 Cleveland Browns The Browns find themselves amidst controversy involving Peyton Hills’ performance and contract situation. As a result, Colt McCoy had to throw 61 passes on Sunday, which is not going to be a template for them to improve on last year’s record.
24 Arizona Cardinals Four games into the season and Kevin Kolb is probably starting to realize that it takes more than one great WR to make a team. Winless Minnesota is up next, giving the Cardinals a chance to go into the bye week on a good note.
25 Seattle Seahawks Seattle fell just short of a great comeback win against Atlanta but instead find themselves at 1-3 heading to NY to face the Giants. Tavaris Jackson had a pretty good game and has been improving, is it a pattern or an abberation?
26 Kansas City Chiefs In a battle between winless teams, the Chiefs finally got “off the schneid” by beating the Vikings 22-17. A battle of AFC divisional champions from a year ago awaits as Kansas City visits the Colts for Week 5.
27 Denver Broncos The Broncos had little hope against the defending Super Bowl XLV champions, and Green Bay romped to a 49-23 victory. Denver hosts the Chargers next week; another loss on the season seems likely.
28 Jacksonville Jaguars Jacksonville was overmatched by the visiting Saints, falling 23-10 in a game few expected they’d be able to win, even at home. There is hope for a win as the Bengals visit Florida next weekend, however.
29 Indianapolis Colts Curtis Painter’s first career NFL start didn’t change Indianapolis’ fortunes, and the team remains winless through four games. Can they finally put one in the win column when they host the Chiefs next weekend?
30 St. Louis Rams The supposed NFC West favorite Rams are 0-4 going into the bye week and have the Packers to look forward to the following week. It’s pretty safe to say that they will be 0-5.
31 Miami Dolphins Could Miami angle their way towards the number one draft pick next season? A 26-16 loss to the Chargers puts the Dolphins at 0-4, and an injury to starting quarterback Chad Henne doesn’t help anything. Lucky for Dolfans, next week is a bye.
32 Minnesota Vikings The Vikings deviated from their formula of dominating the first half and ended up in a close game against the Chiefs. The end result, however, was the same and at 0-4 it’s time for the Vikings to see what rookie QB Christian Ponder can do.

Commentary breakdown: Alex (AFC North, NFC East), Brian (AFC East/South/West), Pat (NFC North/South/West).

Alex Chalupka - Originally from the Baltimore-Washington area, Alex is a huge Baltimore Ravens and Maryland Terrapins fan who currently resides in Little Rock, Arkansas. He’s also an Orioles fan and follows the NBA and other sports as objectively as possible. He enjoys writing about all sports and is the founder/editor of theSportsGeeks.com. - Follow him on Twitter here - Visit his personal website

Brian Parker - Born in Maine, a state with no professional sports team, Brian Parker is nonetheless a huge statistics nerd and fan of the NFL and NHL, with some passing interest in the MLB. Regional ties see him as a Patriots and Red Sox fan, though a childhood of watching Patrick Roy tend the net as a Montreal Canadien puts him on the opposite side of his fellow New Englanders for that NHL rivalry. Brian has both an M.A. and a B.A. in English with a concentration in Creative Writing from the University of Maine. - Follow him on Twitter here - Visit his personal website

Pat Lussenhop - Pat was born and raised in rural Minnesota and is currently living in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. He graduated from St. John's University (MN) with a degree in psychology and went on to get his masters in school psychology at the University of Northern Iowa. He's a lifetime sports fan and follows basketball and football the most. His favorite teams include any team that has "Minnesota" in it's name and he enjoys sports statistics and any good sporting debates. - Follow him on Twitter here

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