The NFL has completed its third week of play, but just what are the big takeaways from another fascinating week?
The NFL is through three weeks, and whilst this might sound like something of a repeat and is probably going to be repeated a lot more between now and the end of the season, but it gave us plenty to talk about and left us dazzled once again with what went on.
Quite what that does to the balance of power within the league though is a different matter, as every week tells us more and more about how teams are and what they look like they’re going to be able to do moving forward.
You never want to be too reactionary, with the season still in its infancy and some teams still trying to work some things out, for instance the Denver Broncos are still making some adjustments to their coaching staff in an attempt to get their team to run smoothly.
And with players picking up injuries, something that will pop up a bit during this article, you don’t want to rule anyone out off the back of a loss just yet, especially if they are scheduled to come back soon.
And so without further ado, now that Week 3 is over, we run the rule over who we think are the top ten teams in the NFL right now:
10 – Jacksonville Jaguars (Not Ranked last week)
We’ll admit, we’re a little stunned to see them on this list too, but you can’t deny that they have done an incredible job, especially on the offensive side of the ball led by Trevor Lawrence, with the team as a whole showing that Urban Meyer may have been holding them back last season.
On the defensive side of the ball, whilst Devin Lloyd was their second pick in the first round after #1 pick Travon Walker, he’s proving to be incredibly effective when they need him to and could have an outside shot at Defensive Rookie of the Year if he and the Jaguars can carry on like this.
9 – Los Angeles Chargers (-2 from last week)
A lot of questions will be asked about the injury situation of Justin Herbert and how he was able to stay in the game, and whilst he was able to put in a reasonable performance with 246 passing yards and a touchdown, you worry about what the toll on his body on Sunday will do to his body.
How this game impacts him will greatly impact their fortunes for the long-run, and it might be worth them sitting him a week to get up to 100% health and be ready for the rest of the season. ‘Lose the battle, win the war’ kind of situation if you will.
8 – Miami Dolphins (Not Ranked)
Took advantage of a Bills team that suffered for multiple reasons (see below), but you can’t deny that they have been impressive in every aspect of the game so far this season, with this being arguably their most impressive performance yet on both sides of the ball.
The one thing you just want from them is to see some consistency, with the offense scoring 20, 42 and 21, and the defense giving up 7, 38 and 19 in each of their three games so far.
7 – Tampa Bay Buccaneers (-4)
This one falls on Tom Brady, who whilst it has to be acknowledged was without a number of key members on offense, still had enough that he should have been able to put up more than the 12 that they did, and when you have the G.O.A.T status, you need to be able to get more out of a team than that.
Credit needs to go to the defense for keeping the score as close as they did though and it might well be that they have to carry the bulk of the load moving forward if the availability of players doesn’t get better.
6 – Baltimore Ravens (+2)
Another incredible performance from quarterback Lamar Jackson, as he torched the New England Patriots for 325 yards both through the air and on the ground, giving us just a glimpse into the MVP form that he showed back in 2019.
The defense certainly didn’t cover itself in glory as they gave up another big score, but did show enough when needed, including 3 interceptions of Mac Jones to hold them in their tracks. Just need to have that on a more consistent basis moving forward.
5 – Los Angeles Rams (-1)
Something of a mundane week for the Rams considering the talent that they have all over the field, but enough to get the job done when it mattered, especially when you consider the collapse that they went through the week before.
Note that Cam Akers was able to be more involved in the offense again this week, and that is going to be something they need to keep other teams honest and give them another gear to kick into when they need to moving forward.
4 – Philadelphia Eagles (+1)
This was arguably the week that the Eagles announced themselves as contenders and a lot of that has to go down to the defense who were ruthless in their pursuit of Carson Wentz on the other side as they registered 9 sacks on the day to put them at the top of the league for team sacks at the end of Sunday’s games.
That’s of course before we get to quarterback Jalen Hurts who with 340 passing yards and 3 touchdowns might be a dark horse for the MVP conversation.
3 – Green Bay Packers (+3)
In what was a defensive battle for the most part, it was the Packers that came out on top by a narrow margin, and that is where we need to focus for this, as they did an incredible job shutting down a Buccaneers offense that was certainly depleted, but still had a lot of people who can cause damage, most notably #12.
If they can perform to this level for the rest of the season, then they will be able to cause even the best offenses trouble on any given day.
2 – Kansas City Chiefs (No Change from last week)
This was a game that probably said more about the Indianapolis Colts than it did the Chiefs, as the home side finally managed to ‘click’ after a tough first few weeks. We’ve predicted in our season preview that the Colts were going to be a good team when all was said and done, and the Chiefs just happened to be the first victim.
The first few weeks of the season show you that the Chiefs are going to be just fine for the rest of the season.
1 – Buffalo Bills (No Change)
This might be arguably the biggest argument that you’ll see (and it will come up a lot this season), that just because you lose doesn’t mean you drop places, and a win doesn’t automatically mean you shoot up. Given the sheer number of injuries that the Bills had to deal with, combined with having to play in tremendous South Florida heat, Josh Allen and crew get a pass for this game.
Assuming they get back to full health, they are still the best team in the league and will be able to overcome this slight blip pretty soon.