The NFL landscape was shaken up a bit in Week 4, adding some much needed intrigue and drama as the season reaches the approximate quarter-way point.

The AFC North became a crowded conversation, with the Cleveland Browns road win over the Baltimore Ravens to even the two teams records, and the Pittsburgh Steelers getting their first win of the season to sit just one game behind.

Daniel Jones and the New York Giants have a fighting chance in the NFC East despite an 0-2 start, thanks to a New Orleans Saints victory on Sunday Night Football handing the Dallas Cowboys theiys of the season.

Otherwise in the NFC, the Green Bay Packers and Los Angeles Rams also proved they’re far from perfect, receiving their first losses of the season as well. The San Francisco 49ers will come off a bye week with command of the NFC West heading into a Monday Night Football game with the Browns.

Unlikely winners like the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Oakland Raiders, and Carolina Panthers proved we know less about the NFL than we thought we did, and that there are few teams that are truly consistent from week to week.

I haven’t done any power rankings this season (though you can check out my preseason predictions for the standings) so this will be my first shot this year.

Power Rankings After Week 4

  1. Kansas City Chiefs (4-0)
  2. New England Patriots (4-0)
  3. New Orleans Saints (3-1)
  4. Los Angeles Rams (3-1)
  5. Dallas Cowboys (3-1)
  6. Green Bay Packers (3-1)
  7. San Francisco 49ers (3-0)
  8. Chicago Bears (3-1)
  9. Baltimore Ravens (2-2)
  10. Detroit Lions (2-1-1)
  11. Seattle Seahawks (3-1)
  12. Buffalo Bills (3-1)
  13. Philadelphia Eagles (2-2)
  14. Los Angeles Chargers (2-2)
  15. Houston Texans (2-2)
  16. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (2-2)
  17. Carolina Panthers (2-2)
  18. Cleveland Browns (2-2)
  19. Minnesota Vikings (2-2)
  20. Indianapolis Colts (2-2)
  21. Tennessee Titans (2-2)
  22. Jacksonville Jaguars (2-2)
  23. New York Giants (2-2)
  24. Oakland Raiders (2-2)
  25. Pittsburgh Steelers (1-3)
  26. Atlanta Falcons (1-3)
  27. Arizona Cardinals (0-3-1)
  28. Denver Broncos (0-4)
  29. New York Jets (0-3)
  30. Cincinnati Bengals (0-4)
  31. Washington Redskins (0-4)
  32. Miami Dolphins (0-4)

Why the Chiefs over the Patriots?

Both the Kansas City Chiefs and New England Patriots had to grind out wins over their Week 4 opponents to remain undefeated. The Chiefs had played a couple close games, while the Patriots blasted their first three opponents and have only allowed one offensive touchdown on the season.

The Patriots 16-10 win wasn’t too inspiring, and New England very well may have lost if not for a defensive touchdown. Even though the Buffalo Bills were 3-0, a well-oiled Patriots team should’ve performed much better. Their Week 5 matchup is another joke in the Washington Redskins.

While Kansas City hasn’t exactly had a gauntlet of a schedule, their opponents combined win-loss record so far is 8-7-1, as compared to New England’s opposing record of 4-11.

We’ll have a clearer picture of these two teams match up in Week 14, but for now, the Chiefs have been beating better competition, and showing grit while winning close games. Being the second-best team is hardly a sleight though to an almost as dominant New England squad.

More

Header photo courtesy AP/File via Boston Globe

Preseason Predictions: Standings, Playoff Teams, Super Bowl Matchup

Weekly Picks: 1 2 3 4

Be sure to follow Sak Sports Blog on Twitter for more NFL updates, or to debate my rankings.

 

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