NFL Power Rankings: Week 5 | Football | CBC Sports

NFL Power RankingsNFL Power Rankings: Week 5

Posted: Wednesday, October 12, 2011 | 12:16 PM

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Members of the New York Jets reflect on a 2-3 start after losing to the New England Patriots in Week 5. (Jim Rogash/Getty Images) Members of the New York Jets reflect on a 2-3 start after losing to the New England Patriots in Week 5. (Jim Rogash/Getty Images)

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Once a week, CBCSports.ca's Tony Care breaks down the balance of power in the National Football League.

Once a week, CBCSports.ca's Tony Care breaks down the balance of power in the National Football League.

 

1. GREEN BAY PACKERS [unchanged]
Overall record: 5-0
Streak: Won five
Aaron Rodgers has caught up to Tom Brady in the race for MVP. The Packers pivot is simply on another level this year, one that could take him to a second straight Super Bowl title, plus the moniker of best QB in the NFL. From a defensive standpoint, it seems Green Bay is beginning to shore up some issues in the secondary.
2. DETROIT LIONS [up from 3]
Overall record: 5-0
Streak: Won five
You could see the defence was too anxious in the early stages of the team's first Monday night game in years. By the start of the second half, the unit returned to its dominant ways against the Bears.
3. NEW ORLEANS SAINTS [down from 2]
Overall record: 4-1
Streak: Won four
Was there any question the Saints were going to rally against Carolina on their final scoring drive? Predictably, Drew Brees was razor sharp, completing 8-of-9 passes for 80 yards and a final TD toss to running back Pierre Thomas.
4. NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS [unchanged]
Overall record: 4-1
Streak: Won two
The best thing that's happened to New England in the last two games has been the running game, which has taken the pressure off a lousy defence.
5. BALTIMORE RAVENS [unchanged]
Overall record: 3-1
Streak: Won two
After a bye week, the Ravens get the injury-riddle Texans at home in Week 6. Still, it should be a good test for the defence.
6. SAN DIEGO CHARGERS [up from 7]
Overall record: 4-1
Streak: Won three
With some key injuries on offence, it was good to see receiver Malcolm Floyd return and post a 100-yard game, and a TD against the Broncos.
7. BUFFALO BILLS [up from 10]
Overall record: 4-1
Streak: Won one
Head coach Chan Gailey is no dummy. He knows Philadelphia has a porous run defence so he made Fred Jackson, who rushed for 111 yards and a touchdown, the focal point of the offence.
8. WASHINGTON REDSKINS [up from 12]
Overall record: 3-1
Streak: Won one
Washington's next five games - Philadelphia, @Carolina, @ Buffalo, San Francisco, @Miami - aren't daunting, and with the Cowboys, Giants and Eagles all struggling with various issues, the Redskins appear to be in great shape in the NFC East.
9. SAN FRANCISCO 49ERS [up from 14]
Overall record: 4-1
Streak: Won three
Did anyone expect the 49ers to start off this well? Not me. But this just shows the influence of head coach Jim Harbaugh, who has his team playing with a lot of confidence.
10. OAKLAND RAIDERS [up from 16]
Overall record: 3-2
Streak: Won one
Here's an obscure tribute to the late Raiders owner Al Davis, who died on Saturday. In the 2000 draft, Davis selected kicker Sebastian Janikowski with the 17th overall pick. While I loved Janikowski at Florida State, I thought it was crazy for any team to take a kicker in the first round. But the Polish Cannon has been quite a weapon for the Raiders. In this season alone, Janikowski equalled the longest field goal (63 yards) in NFL history, and during Week 5's emotional win in Houston, he tied a league record with three field goals of 50 yards or more in a game. After 11 years I finally say to you, Mr. Davis, great pick!
11. PITTSBURGH STEELERS [up from 17]
Overall record: 3-2
Streak: Won one
No one has ever questioned Ben Roethlisberger's toughness. He proved it again by throwing five TD passes against Tennessee on a badly sprained left foot.
12. HOUSTON TEXANS [down from 6]
Overall record: 3-2
Streak: Lost one
Losing Andre Johnson (hamstring) and now Mario Williams (torn pectoral muscle) in back-to-back weeks could be a big blow for a team looking to make the playoffs for the first time in franchise history. Williams is done for the season while Johnson's return could still be two weeks away.
13. N.Y. GIANTS [down from 8]
Overall record: 3-2
Streak: Lost one
I'm not going to put the entire blame on Eli Manning for that ugly loss to Seattle. Yes, he threw three interceptions, but the final one at Seattle's six-yard line wasn't his fault. Receiver Victor Cruz slipped, then tipped the ball before Seahawks corner Brandon Browner returned it for a Pick Six.
14. TENNESSEE TITANS [down from 9]
Overall record: 3-2
Streak: Lost one
There's no sugar coating the fact that Tennessee got its rear end kicked in Pittsburgh. On a positive note, every team in the AFC South also fell, so no ground was lost.
15. DALLAS COWBOYS [unchanged]
Overall record: 2-2
Streak: Lost one
Unless the Cowboys' defence can create some turnovers, I foresee an ugly defeat in New England.
16. N.Y. JETS [down from 13]
Overall record: 2-3
Streak: Lost three
This once vaunted Jets' defence is getting gashed by the run. And how many times do teams have to find out the hard way that you don't play zone against Tom Brady.
17. TAMPA BAY BUCCANEERS [down from 11]
Overall record: 3-2
Streak: Lost one
It's one thing to lose an NFL game to a team you're expected to beat. It's quite another when you get annihilated 48-3 and show no fight. I still don't think head coach Raheem Morris knows what hit his Bucs in San Francisco.
18. ATLANTA FALCONS [up from 19]
Overall record: 2-3
Streak: Lost one
The Falcons have already fallen two games behind the Saints in the NFC South and are looking ragged after five games, to say the least.
19.CINCINNATI BENGALS [up from 21]
Overall record: 3-2
Streak: Won two
It's evident rookies Andy Dalton and A.J. Green are getting more comfortable with one another. This QB-receiver combination should become a formidable duo in the AFC North.
20.CHICAGO BEARS [down from 18]
Overall record: 2-3
Streak: Lost one
There's no reason for committing that many false starts in a football game. I understand crowd noise can be overwhelming at times, but come on.
21. CLEVELAND BROWNS [up from 22]
Overall record: 2-2
Streak: Lost one
Despite a .500 record in the tough AFC North, the Browns face several issues, including whether QB Colt McCoy really is the team's face of the franchise.
22. PHILADELPHIA EAGLES [down from 20]
Overall record: 1-4
Streak: Lost four
Andy Reid continues to take responsible for his team's horrid start. Here's another problem that's on you, Andy: appointing offensive line coach Juan Castillo defensive coordinator. The guy hasn't been involved with that side of the ball since coaching high school and you put in him charge of a defence with several new faces? What were you thinking?
23. SEATTLE SEAHAWKS [up from 25]
Overall record: 2-3
Streak: Won one
Charlie Whitehurst did a nice job in replacing Tarvaris Jackson at QB, but there remain too many inconsistencies in his game.
24. KANSAS CITY CHIEFS [up from 28]
Overall record: 2-3
Streak: Won two
If the Chiefs have any hope of getting back into the thick of the AFC West, they'll need wins @Oakland and home to San Diego in the next two games following their Week 6 bye week.
25. CAROLINA PANTHERS [down from 23]
Overall record: 1-4
Streak: Lost two
All this losing Cam Newton is experiencing can't be easy, but knowing he's playing well against some top competition will go a long way in his maturation process.
26. JACKSONVILLE JAGUARS [down from 24]
Overall record: 1-4
Streak: Lost four
There is no way head coach Jack Del Rio lasts the season with his team struggling this badly. Ok, I've said this before but I've got to be right one of these years.
27. ARIZONA CARDINALS [down from 26]
Overall record: 1-4
Streak: Lost four
The biggest reason for Arizona's awful start isn't QB Kevin Kolb. Look no further than both the offensive and defensive lines. There's your main culprits.
28. DENVER BRONCOS [down from 27]
Overall record: 1-4
Streak: Lost three
I'm with the fan base on this one, John Fox. Starting Tim Tebow at QB is the right move. You probably won't win much, but he'll make things interesting.
29. MINNESOTA VIKINGS [up from 31]
Overall record: 1-4
Streak: Won one
You see what happens when Adrian Peterson gets the ball regularly - it stabilizes the offence and the defence isn't always on the field.
30. INDIANAPOLIS COLTS [down from 29]
Overall record: 0-5
Streak: Lost five
As if an 0-5 start isn't bad enough, now players are getting asked about the team possibly drafting Stanford QB Andrew Luck.
31. MIAMI DOLPHINS [down from 30]
Overall record: 0-4
Streak: Lost four
Of the nearly 3,000 people asked in a South Florida Sun Sentinel poll, 79 per cent said the Dolphins should "purposely try" to get the No. 1 overall pick. I'm surprised that number isn't 100 per cent.
32. ST. LOUIS RAMS [unchanged]
Overall record: 0-4
Streak: Lost four
After what must have been a frustrating bye week, the Rams are rewarded with a trip Green Bay in Week 6. It just keeps getting worse, doesn't it?

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