Week 10 may have been the most important week yet of the 2019 NFL regular season.
The previously undefeated San Francisco 49ers fell to the Seattle Seahawks, but put up a great effort in what was easily one of the best games of the year. Nevertheless, the loss has huge NFC playoff implications. The Seahawks are just a game behind now, so while the 49ers had their eyes set on a first-round bye, by the season’s end, they could see themselves playing on the road as a wildcard team.
With the 49ers losing, and the New Orleans Saints playing the lowly Atlanta Falcons, the Saints would be tied for best record in the conference now right? That’s what I would have thought, but the Falcons shockingly upset Drew Brees and the Saints.
The Baltimore Ravens rolled over the Cincinnati Bengals and sit just a game behind the New England Patriots they beat. With teams like the Kansas City Chiefs and Indianapolis Colts losing, home-field advantage will likely be a battle between just the Patriots and Ravens.
Tons of other wacky results like Browns over Bills, Dolphins over Colts, and Steelers over Rams shook up the shape of my weekly Power Rankings. Read ahead to see where all 32 teams clock in this week.
Power Rankings After Week 10
- New England Patriots (8-1) [Last Week: 3]
- Even in a bye week, the Patriots find a way to get better. With losses by the 49ers and Saints, I felt no choice but to put the Patriots back at the top after just one week away from the #1 position. You may be thinking: shouldn’t the Ravens be above the Patriots based on their head-to-head win? I wouldn’t blame you for picking Baltimore above them, but to me, the Patriots are still the team to beat. Seven of their wins were straight blow-outs, an impressive feat. They’re offense and defense together make them the most well-rounded team in the league.
- San Francisco 49ers (8-1) [Last Week: 2]
- The 49ers lasted one more week, yet the same amount of games as the Patriots: 8 straight wins before their first loss. If the Seahawks handled the 49ers, then San Francisco could have tumbled down this list. But losing in the final seconds of overtime, going toe-to-toe with the Seahawks for not 60 but 70 minutes? It was about as impressive as a loss could be. I still rate the 49ers above the Seahawks due to their superior defense.
- Baltimore Ravens (7-2) [Last Week: 4]
- The Ravens have been the only team to beat the Patriots, but if the two teams played a best-of-seven series, I would still take New England. No sleight at all to the Ravens: I think they’re a great team with a shot at a Super Bowl title this year. Just trying to explain why they’re lower than the Patriots team they beat.
- Seattle Seahawks (8-2) [Last Week: 6]
- Seattle’s two losses have come against the Ravens and Saints, who just so happen to be in the Top 5 of my Power Rankings as well. The Seahawks are an elite team, and just ended the 49ers undefeated season. Russell Wilson could be the MVP, and he could even lead the Seahawks to the Super Bowl for the 3rd time in his career.
- New Orleans Saints (7-2) [Last Week: 1]
- I’ve been high on the Saints for a while, ranking them #2 above the undefeated 49ers for a few weeks, and then finally, number one when the Patriots lost their first game of the season. The Saints loss to the Falcons easily could’ve been a fluke, and probably was. But the four teams above them have ended up impressing me just a bit more: and mainly lose to each other.
- Green Bay Packers (8-2) [Last Week: 5]
- The Packers loss to the Chargers seemed like a fluke, and maybe it was. At 8-2, the Packers are one of only five teams with two losses or less. Last week, they outdueled a good Panthers team.
- Minnesota Vikings (7-3) [Last Week: 9]
- When I think of elite teams, the Vikings don’t immediately come to mind. But at 7-3, with a dominant defense, they’re setting themselves apart from the pack.
- Houston Texans (6-3) [Last Week: 7]
- The Texans enjoyed their bye week atop the AFC South, but have some tough matchups coming up.
- Kansas City Chiefs (6-4) [Last Week: 8]
- The Chiefs didn’t look bad when Matt Moore was their quarterback. They weren’t bad offensively on Sunday either, but the defense allowed 35 points to Ryan Tannehill and the Titans. Kansas City is still a dangerous team, but their defense drastically holds them back.
- Dallas Cowboys (5-4) [Last Week: 11]
- By virtue of a close loss to a good team, and many teams around also losing, Dallas actually rises a spot despite a loss to the Vikings.
- Pittsburgh Steelers (5-4) [Last Week: 16]
- The Steelers have won four straight games, and while the AFC North crown won’t be attainable if Lamar Jackson and the Ravens keep it up, Pittsburgh could be in play for a wildcard berth. If the season ended today, the Steelers would be the 6th seed in the AFC.
- Carolina Panthers (5-4) [Last Week: 12]
- After a 4-0 personal start to kick off Kyle Allen’s season, he’s 1-2 in his last three starts. One loss was an embarrassing blowout to the 49ers, and last week a close loss to the Packers.
- Oakland Raiders (5-4) [Last Week: 17]
- With back-to-back wins over the Lions and Chargers, the Raiders season is at a high point right now. Currently, Oakland is tied with the Steelers for the AFC’s final playoff spot.
- Philadelphia Eagles (5-4) [Last Week: 14]
- Philadelphia stays put during their bye week. The Eagles are capable of impressive wins against good teams, as well as head-scratching ones to poor teams. They’ll be in play for the NFC East title all the way until the season’s end.
- Los Angeles Rams (5-4) [Last Week: 10]
- Three straight wins, three straight losses, back-to-back wins but against bad teams: who is this year’s Rams team? The Steelers came in hot, but were no world-beaters. Suddenly, the defending NFC Champions face a huge uphill battle just to make the playoffs this season.
- Indianapolis Colts (5-4) [Last Week: 13]
- Amazingly, all nine of the Colts games have been decided by 7 points or less. At 5-2, it was a mark of a team that won those close games. Now at 5-4, the Colts have to do something different to avoid a middle of the road season. They find themselves in a three-way tie for the AFC’s final playoff spot, and just a game behind the Texans in the AFC South. But losing to the Dolphins isn’t a good look.
- Tennessee Titans (5-5) [Last Week: 21]
- The Titans outdueled Patrick Mahommes and the Chiefs in a shootout. After making the switch to Ryan Tannehill at quarterback, Tennessee has won three of four games. They could be in play for the AFC South and/or a wildcard berth if they keep this up.
- Chicago Bears (4-5) [Last Week: 19]
- The Bears snapped a four-game losing streak with 20-13 win over the rival Lions.
- Detroit Lions (3-5-1) [Last Week: 18]
- The Lions aren’t a bad team. But after their 2-0-1 start, Detroit has gone 1-5 since then. Another lost, meaningless season for Mattew Stafford and the Lions.
- Los Angeles Chargers (4-6) [Last Week: 20]
- A narrow loss to the Raiders snapped the Chargers two-game win streak, but they’re playing much better football than they did the first few weeks of the season.
- Buffalo Bills (6-3) [Last Week: 15]
- The next-lowest 6-win team is the Chiefs at #9. There’s 3 and 4 win teams above them. The Bills have an elite defense, and a subpar offense. It’s been enough to win them games 66% of the time, but for some reason, the formula didn’t work against Baker Mayfield and the Browns.
- Jacksonville Jaguars (4-5) [Last Week: 21]
- The Jaguars have only been outscored by 13 points this season, which isn’t too bad. Better than the five-win Raiders. I’m not too sure how Nick Foles returning to the field will affect Jacksonville.
- Tampa Bay Buccaneers (3-6) [Last Week: 25]
- After taking the Seahawks to overtime last week, in a string of close losses, Tampa Bay edged out a win over Kyler Murray and the Cardinals.
- Cleveland Browns (3-6) [Last Week: 26]
- For the first time in over a month, the Browns emerged victorious with a 19-16 win over the Bills. It’s nice to get back in the win column, but overall this Browns team is still pretty cold (1-4 in their last five games now.)
- Denver Broncos (3-6) [Last Week: 25]
- The Broncos didn’t play this week. With Joe Flacco on the bench, Denver is 1-0 so far.
- Miami Dolphins (2-7) [Last Week: 29]
- Winning back-to-back games in the NFL is still a feat, and the Dolphins 2nd win came over a decent Colts team. For Dolphins fans, the wins may be bittersweet as they impact draft position.
- Arizona Cardinals (3-5-1) [Last Week: 23]
- I kind of like this Cardinals team, but their three wins came against three of the weakest teams in the league: #28 Falcons, #30 Giants, and #32 Bengals. Arizona’s record isn’t abysmal, but they can’t beat too many teams.
- Atlanta Falcons (2-7) [Last Week: 28]
- The Falcons shocked me with a 26-9 win over a Saints team I considered the best in the league in last week’s Power Rankings. Chalk it up as a fluke most likely.
- New York Jets (2-7) [Last Week: 31]
- Since the return of Sam Darnold, the Jets have beaten the Cowboys, been blown out by the Patriots, couldn’t keep up with the Jaguars, then pushed the Giants to new lows.
- New York Giants (2-8) [Last Week: 27]
- New York’s losing streak slides to six games, with Danny Dimes hot 2-0 career start a thing of the past. Losing to a Jets team that just lost to the Dolphins? Final nail in the coffin, as if it wasn’t already.
- Washington Redskins (1-8) [Last Week: 32]
- Dwayne Haskins will be the starter for the rest of the season: can he manage any wins? Games against the Jets and Giants will be prime opportunities.
- Cincinnati Bengals (0-9) [Last Week: 30]
- The Bengals made the switch to rookie Ryan Finley at quarterback, and lost 49-13 to the Ravens. Cincinnati avoided last place last week, even as the only winless team. But now, it’s hard to argue they’re not the worst.
- Preseason Predictions: Standings, Playoff Teams, Super Bowl Matchup
- Weekly Picks: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
- Power Rankings: Post-Week 4, Post-Week 5, Post-Week 6, Post-Week 7, Post-Week 8, Post-Week 9
- Halfway Point Updated NFL Predictions: Standings, Playoffs, and Super Bowl
- 2019-20 NBA Predictions: Standings, Playoff Teams, MVP and Finals Matchup
- NBA Season-Opening Power Rankings, Post-Week 1, Post-Week 2
- Clippers Rout Warriors, Establish Themselves as NBA’s Best Team
- 76ers Beat Trailblazers in Final Seconds to Improve to 5-0
- Lakers Down Spurs, LeBron James Gets 83rd Career Triple Double
- Lakers Beat Bulls for 6th Straight Win, LeBron James 3rd Straight Triple Double
Header photo acquired via Sports Illustrated.com