By Bryan Dietzler
The fourth week of the 2017 season has come and gone, and it was another interesting weekend in the NFL. The Atlanta Falcons, the top team in this poll last week, lost and are no longer at the top. The Patriots begin another slide down the poll while some of the teams that this writer felt would stay near the bottom all season are starting to make their way up.
Who would have thought that the Cowboys would have lost or that the Lions would be sitting where they are now? This season has been tough to predict that’s for sure. But that’s what makes it fun.
Maybe the picture of who’s who in the NFL is starting to become clearer now.
So, let’s take a look at this fan’s sometimes late but always consistent NFL Power Poll for the fifth week of the NFL season.
- Kansas City Chiefs-(LW 2, 4-0)-The Chiefs remain the class of the NFL. They did struggle a bit against Washington but persevered. Can they continue to keep winning games and get to the Super Bowl?
- Atlanta Falcons-(LW 1, 3-1)-Either the Falcons are sliding or the Bills are that good. Still the class of the NFC but there are some teams that could sneak up on them.
- Green Bay Packers-(LW 4, 3-1)-The Packers had quite a few key players injured Thursday night and still trounced the Bears. Granted, it was the Bears but this team can overcome adversity. Could they be the team to beat in the NFC?
- Pittsburgh Steelers-(LW 5, 3-1)-After slipping up against Chicago, the Steelers took it to the Ravens and proved that they are one of the best teams in the AFC. Can they get to another Super Bowl before Big Ben retires?
- Detroit Lions-(LW 6, 3-1)-This team may just be for real. The Lions are going to give the Packers a run for it in the NFC North.
- Philadelphia Eagles-(LW 8, 3-1)-The Eagles are looking better all the time. Could this be their year? Will Carson Wentz lead them to the promised land?
- Denver Broncos-(LW 10, 3-1)-The Broncos are poised to compete with the Kansas City Chiefs for the top spot in the AFC West. Their defense is tough and their offense isn’t that bad. Are they headed for another playoff run?
- New England Patriots-(LW 3, 2-2)-The Patriots defense has taken the team down and Tom Brady cannot keep up. This may not be the Patriot’s year but there is still a lot of football left to be played so it’s too soon to say anything yet.
- Carolina Panthers-(LW 12,3 3-1)-Handing the New England Patriots a loss will move you up in any poll. While their defense seems to be hot and cold, their offense can put some points. They will be competitive in a very competitive NFC South.
- Tampa Bay Buccaneers-(LW 11, 2-1)-The Bucs barely beat the lowly Giants but showed people that they have a decent offense. With Atlanta losing they have a chance to keep pace with the Falcons and may even have the personnel to beat them twice this season.
- Oakland Raiders-(LW 7, 2-2)-The Raiders are starting to come down to earth and will drop further with Derek Carr out a few weeks.
- Dallas Cowboys-(LW 9, 2-2)-The Cowboys are hot and cold through four games this season. They need to recapture the magic they had last season and push their way to the playoffs. But the Eagles will be in their way.
- Houston Texans-(LW 19, 2-2)-The Texans move up big in this week’s poll. The biggest question here is, are they for real? Is DeShaun Watson for real? If this team can keep it up, they will go deep in the playoffs.
- Seattle Seahawks-(LW 14, 2-2)-Seattle got a big win against a weaker team. Can they continue to move forward or will they struggle against better teams?
- Tennessee Titans-(LW 13, 2-2)-If Marcus Mariotta misses a lot of time, this team will fall. There is a lot of talent but without their young leader, they will struggle.
- Baltimore Ravens-(LW 14, 2-2)-The Raven’s offense is struggling and isn’t helping them out. It was thought this team was going to be very competitive but so far, they are having a lot of problems.
- Washington Redskins-(LW 15, 2-2)-The Redskins put up a good fight against the NFL’s best team. They can compete and have a shot at winning the NFC East.
- Los Angeles Rams-(LW 21, 3-1)-I keep getting more impressed with the Rams each week and think that they will move up higher in this poll as time goes on. This team is different than they were in 2016 and are looking good.
- Arizona Cardinals-(LW 20, 2-2)-The Cardinals last-second win was exciting, wasn’t it? But can they win without the drama?
- Minnesota Vikings-(LW, 2-2)-There may be help on the way for the Vikings in the form of the Chicago Bears. However, the Bears usually play them tough so it’s not a guaranteed win by any means.
- Buffalo Bills-(LW 22, 3-1)-Are the Bills for real? I have a hard time moving them up that far because I don’t believe who they are. But, slowly, they are starting to become convincing.
- Jacksonville Jaguars-(LW 18, 2-2)-The Jags lost a close game Sunday to one of the worst teams in football. Or so we thought they were. Jacksonville is hot and cold but still very talented. They just can’t connect the dots yet.
- New Orleans Saints-(LW 26, 2-2)-The Saints take a jump this week thanks to a strong offensive performance. If they can repeat this and solidify their defense they might have a better than predicted season.
- Miami Dolphins-(LW 23, 1-2)-The Dolphins will probably continue to head further down this poll. There may be some internal issues in Miami that are affecting the team and their on the field performance.
- Cincinnati Bengals-(LW 29, 1-3)-The Bengals finally got a win and can start building off that. Marvin Lewis will keep crossing his fingers in hopes that they win more games because his job is on the line.
- New York Jets-(LW 30, 2-2)-The Jets get to move up a few spots thanks to their new found winning ways. Can the Jets keep it up? Could they be the surprise team of 2017?
- Indianapolis Colts-(LW 25, 1-3)-When will Andrew Luck be back? Does anyone know? And can he bring the defense with him, please?
- Chicago Bears-(LW 27, 1-3)-The Bears are the worst of the one-loss teams right now. Will starting rookie quarterback Mitchell Trubisky turn things around?
- New York Giants-(LW 24, 0-4)-The winless Giants will play the winless Chargers. Someone has to win right? Or they could tie and probably will.
- Los Angeles Chargers-(LW 28, 0-4)-This team has a lot of work to do but can win. They just need to get it together. There is too much talent not to win some games.
- San Francisco 49ers-(LW 31, 0-4)-The 49ers have a lot of work to do but have the right front office personnel to get things done. They are easily a couple years away from contention.
- Cleveland Browns- (LW 32, 0-4)-You heard it here first, the Cleveland Browns will get their first win this weekend. It’s about time too.
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