Our rankings heading into Week 10:
|Green Bay Packers
|The Packers got in a shootout with the Chargers and walked away with a 45-38 win. QB Aaron Rodgers is on pace to break a lot of records and the team is halfway to a perfect regular season. The Packers are a cut above the rest of the league right now.
|San Francisco 49ers
|San Fran is 7-1 and have a five game lead in the bad as usual NFC West. With 5 of their final 8 games coming against division opponents, San Fran is looking at a 12+ win season which could get them a first round playoff bye.
|The Joe Flacco-led Ravens swept the season series against the Steelers, which puts them in the driver’s seat to be a top seed in the AFC, especially if that offense can continue to improve.
|Sunday’s loss to the Ravens drops the Steelers down to third place in the division, but a pretty easy schedule down the stretch will keep them in the playoff hunt.
|New Orleans Saints
|After an awful loss to the Rams, the Saints bounced back with a big win against Tampa Bay pushing them to the lead of the NFC South. Their final stretch is not an easy one as they face Atlanta twice, the Giants, and the Lions.
|Detroit was on a bye and Ndamukong Suh had a tea party with the commish to discuss his “dirty” plays. They have the Bears up next who are just one game behind them in the NFC North and then get their first of two shots to take the Packers down a peg the following week.
|The Texans are beginning to break away from the pack in the AFC South with a handy 30-12 win over the Browns. Houston visits Tampa Bay next week hoping to keep the winning streak going.
|New York Giants
|The Giants made themselves known as an NFC contender with a last-minute win over the once-mighty Patriots. They’re looking more and more like the favorite to win the division.
|New England Patriots
|With a last-second 24-20 loss to the Giants, the Patriots are on a rare two-game losing streak heading into a Sunday Night Football match-up against the Jets for control of the AFC East. New England technically holds the tie-break for first in the AFC East, but it might be fleeting.
|New York Jets
|New York manhandled the Bills on their way to a 27-11 victory which has allowed them to claw their way back to relevance in the AFC East. Next week’s game hosting the Patriots in prime time could decide the fate of the division this season.
|Atlanta easily handled the Colts and will face the Saints next week for the first of their two meetings. If they win, they’ll be tied for first in the NFC South. They haven’t lived up to their lofty preseason expectations yet, but a win this week keeps them on track for a playoff spot.
|For the first time all year, the Bears didn’t give up a sack and they ended up beating up on the Eagles for their fifth win of the year. They’ll look to avenge their week 5 loss to Detroit this week and move into a tie for second place with the Lions. The Bears definitely remain in the playoff hunt with this weeks win.
|The Bengals won again this week against a mediocre Titans team. They’ll be forced to show what they’re really made of with back-to-back games against the Steelers and Ravens.
|Buffalo hardly showed up in a 27-11 loss to the rival Jets, falling into a three-way tie in the AFC East with New York and New England. Next up is a visit to Dallas for a game which may spiral things further out of control.
|San Diego Chargers
|A late rally nearly brought the Chargers back into the game, but they still fell to Green Bay by a final of 45-38. The AFC West remains crowded at the top as San Diego prepares to host Oakland on a short week.
|Tampa Bay Bucs
|With a loss to the Saints the Bucs fell behind rising Atlanta as well. They are going to need to win some big games coming up and get some help from other teams beating up on Atlanta and New Orleans if they hope to stay in the playoff race.
|A strong second half led to a win this weekend for Dallas. They are doing their best to stay in the playoff picture, and the struggling Eagles are helping them out.
|With another rough outing from Carson Palmer, Oakland fell to Denver by a final score of 38-24. The Raiders travel to San Diego for Thursday Night Football this week.
|Tennessee continues to slip further behind in the AFC South after a loss to the Bengals. The Titans have a small window of opportunity to keep pace, and will need a win in Carolina next Sunday.
|The Bears may have ended the Eagles’ season on Monday Night. A 6-10 pace is not what they were hoping for when they made all those offseason moves.
|Kansas City Chiefs
|After a hard-fought Monday Night Football win over San Diego, the Chiefs laid an egg in a 31-3 loss to the Dolphins. Kansas City hosts Denver next as they try to keep pace in the AFC West.
|The Browns look like a disaster offensively. I’m not sure how they’ve managed to win 3 games.
|Carolina, who had a bye in week 9, will return to take on Titans at home. The Panthers won’t be making the playoffs barring a miracle and should end up with a decent draft pick which they can use to continue to build around the very impressive Cam Newton.
|Tim Tebow’s performance proves to be as polarizing as the way people react to him; #15 led the Broncos to a divisional win over Oakland, 38-24. Denver travels to Kansas City for another AFC West showdown next week.
|The Vikings were on a bye in week 9 and come back to face the Packers. Christian Ponder’s first start was against Green Bay and he did better than expected in what turned out to be a much closer game than expected. It’s hard to expect a similar outcome this time as the game is in Green Bay and the Packers are on fire.
|Before the season, if you had told the Redskins fans they’d be tied with the Eagles through 8 games, they would have been pretty happy. The problem is they’re tied at 3-5.
|Arizona picked up their second win of the year on an overtime Patrick Peterson punt return TD. As exciting as that was, Arizona went from playoff hopeful before the year to one of the worst teams in the league. The Cardinals have some good pieces, but need to shore up areas in the offseason to become competitive.
|Little changed for the Jaguars in their bye week, as they sit four games behind Houston for the AFC South lead. Jacksonville travels to Indianapolis next week to play the hapless Colts.
|Seattle played Dallas relatively well, but ended up with their sixth loss on the year. The Seattle D is ranked 13th against the rush and 18th against the pass but their offense lags far behind. Lots of work needs to be done here.
|If the goal was to “Suck for Luck,” then the Dolphins failed by beating the Chiefs 31-3. The win sets Miami up for Pick #2–not the one they’ll likely need for Andrew Luck–going into a home game against the Redskins.
|St. Louis Rams
|The Rams weren’t able to follow up their first win of the year with another as they fell in overtime to the Cardinals. The reemergence of Steven Jackson has been good to see, but can we expect that again next year because the playoffs aren’t happening this season.
|The Colts were hardly competitive in a 31-7 loss to Atlanta, and now sit alone as the final winless team in the NFL. Indianapolis hosts Jacksonville next Sunday; will they have the pride to try and fight for win #1?
Commentary breakdown: Alex (AFC North, NFC East), Brian (AFC East/South/West), Pat (NFC North/South/West).