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NFL Power Rankings: Week 7

Rex Ryan

Rex Ryan

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Major injuries, some wild finishes and more than a handful of controversial calls highlighted a very interesting Week 6 in the NFL. As the result of some surprising wins and even a few close losses, there’s been a little shuffling in the pecking order among teams, especially at the top of the league.

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Factoring in everything from overall roster strength, to quarterback play, to the coaching staff, here is the latest edition of NFL power rankings and where every team stacks up from 1 to 32.

Week 7 NFL Power Rankings

1. Minnesota Vikings

Last week: 1
The Vikings were off this week and no doubt used that extra time to help get quarterback Sam Bradford even more comfortable in Norv Turner’s offense.

NFL Power Rankings: Vikings

2. New England Patriots

Last week: 2
Against a solid defense, we really saw how devastatingly effective the Gronk/Bennett two-tight end look is from the Patriots as they delivered a perfect homecoming for conquering hero Tom Brady.

NFL Power Rankings: Patriots

3. Dallas Cowboys

Last week: 8
Nobody in Dallas could have predicted a 5-1 record at this point in the year and after beating the Packers in Lambeau, there’s probably not anybody predicting Tony Romo will take over for Dak Prescott at this point either.

NFL Power Rankings: Cowboys

4. Seattle Seahawks

Last week: 9
The controversial final defensive play is getting all the press and taking away how good the Seahawks looked for three quarters against one of the hottest teams in the league. Seattle still needs more out of its run game though.

NFL Power Rankings: Seahawks

5. Atlanta Falcons

Last week: 4
Even in a loss, the Falcons earned plenty of respect by going toe-to-toe with a tough team like the Seahawks. The ending wasn’t what they wanted it to be but the game could serve Atlanta well in the long term.

NFL Power Rankings: Falcons

6. Washington Redskins

Last week: 11
You put up nearly 500 yards on one of the best defenses in the league coming into the week and you’re going to see a move upward in the rankings. Add in the continued improvement on defense and Washington is back to wondering about making noise in the division again.

NFL Power Rankings: Redskins

7. Denver Broncos

Last week: 6
Short week with no head coach so you can understand a sub-par outing on the road from the Broncos against a division rival. Things need to improve on Sunday night in their grudge match against Brock Osweiler though.

NFL Power Rankings: Broncos

8. Buffalo Bills

Last week: 13
The hottest team in the NFL seems to have found its groove and are suddenly back in contention in the division too. Everybody is talking about the offense clicking but the defensive resurgence is much more encouraging.

NFL Power Rankings: Bills

9. Philadelphia Eagles

Last week: 7
Was Sunday’s outing against Washington a simple blip on the radar for Carson Wentz or a sign of things to come? It won’t get any easier with the teams on tap — vs. Minnesota, at Dallas, at Giants, vs. Atlanta, at Seattle, vs. Green Bay — through November.

NFL Power Rankings: Eagles

10. Green Bay Packers

Last week: 5
The question being asked around the league is a good one with no obvious answer: What’s up with Aaron Rodgers?

NFL Power Rankings: Packers

11. Pittsburgh Steelers

Last week: 3
A bad loss at Miami means nothing compared to the health of Ben Roethlisberger’s knee. For the short term it definitely puts a hamper on the showdown with New England, and long term who knows when the Steelers will get back their star signal-caller.

NFL Power Rankings: Steelers

12. Kansas City Chiefs

Last week: 12
If every game were played after a bye, Andy Reid would be talked about in the same air as Bill Belichick. Beating Oakland on the road is great but the team has to keep things rolling with a very winnable stretch of games over coming month.

NFL Power Rankings: Chiefs

13. Oakland Raiders

Last week: 10
Neither of the team’s two losses is all that bad but the troubling thing about the game with the Chiefs is how much of a breakdown it was in all three phases for the Raiders.

NFL Power Rankings: Raiders

14. Arizona Cardinals

Last week: 14
A year after leaning on Carson Palmer to lead the team to a playoff berth, it seems the Cardinals have finally found out that leaning on David Johnson is the way to make the same kind of run this season.

NFL Power Rankings: Cardinals

15. New York Giants

Last week: 15
New York needed that win against Baltimore in the worst way, especially because the division looks like one of the best in football and keeping pace isn’t going to be easy.

NFL Power Rankings: Giants

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16. Cincinnati Bengals

Last week: 17
An injury to Ben Roethlisberger opens the door a bit in the division but we’re at the point where you have to question if the Bengals can take advantage and get back into the race after the way they’ve played the past two weeks against good teams.

NFL Power Rankings: Bengals

17. Houston Texans

Last week: 18
It took a late comeback and overtime to salvage a win but maybe, just maybe, that will be the spark that quarterback Brock Osweiler needs to get going.

NFL Power Rankings: Texans

18. Baltimore Ravens

Last week: 16
Even at 3-3, Baltimore is best positioned to take advantage of Big Ben’s absence. You just have to wonder if the Ravens are able to after the way they played against the Giants when everything was on the line.

NFL Power Rankings: Ravens

19. Detroit Lions

Last week: 20
The offense is pretty good and getting better if Golden Tate has more outings like that. Still, as everybody could see on each Case Keenum dropback, the defense needs plenty of work.

NFL Power Rankings: Detroit Lions

20. New Orleans Saints

Last week: 24
Two straight thrilling wins has New Orleans trending upward but there’s still a bit of mystery as to how good this team actually is.

NFL Power Rankings: Saints

21. Los Angeles Rams

Last week: 19
This could be a make-or-break-type stretch from now until December for the Rams, which will head to London looking to regroup defensively after that outing against the Lions. At least the offense is starting to show signs of life for Jeff Fisher.

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22. Tennessee Titans

Last week: 22
It’s crazy to think that Tennessee almost went into Monday tied for the division lead but there’s still plenty to clean up after allowing Cleveland to get back in the game in the fourth quarter.

NFL Power Rankings: Tennessee Titans

23. San Diego Chargers

Last week: 26
There may not be much time to celebrate finally holding onto a second half lead but the way Joey Bosa flashed on Thursday night is very encouraging for a team that needs a few bright spots to hold onto.

NFL Power Rankings: Chargers

24. Miami Dolphins

Last week: 29
They soundly beat Pittsburgh even aside from the Ben Roethlisberger injury but the most encouraging sign was Jay Ajayi’s emergence from the Witness Protection Program to have a big game. Perhaps that is enough to get going on a run with some winnable games upcoming.

NFL Power Rankings: Dolphins

25. Jacksonville Jaguars

Last week: 23
Two straight wins will help cool Gus Bradley’s hot seat a little but struggling to beat the Bears late isn’t a great look despite finding the win column.

NFL Power Rankings: Jaguars

26. Indianapolis Colts

Last week: 21
The win probabilities for the Colts in the fourth quarter hovered in the 90 percent range so of course they ended up losing. The defense did play well in the first half but there’s simply not enough talent in Indy.

NFL Power Rankings: Colts

27. Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Last week: 25
The Bucs can benefit from a nicely timed bye week to get healthy and maybe get something going.

NFL Power Rankings: Buccaneers

28. Carolina Panthers

Last week: 27
It’s times like these that further serve to underscore that the team didn’t use all that money saved from letting Josh Norman walk to upgrade the secondary at all.

NFL Power Rankings: Panthers

29. New York Jets

Last week: 28
Was the brief insertion of Geno Smith a sign of things to come for the Jets’ offense going forward? There’s nothing to lose at this point.

NFL Power Rankings: Jets

30. Chicago Bears

Last week: 30
Brian Hoyer throwing it 50 times a game and only scoring 16 points isn’t a recipe for success on a roster that just doesn’t have a ton of talent on it.

NFL Power Rankings: Bears

31. San Francisco 49ers

Last week: 31
It’s incredible that the team is this bad against the run defensively and that’s one reason not even a change at quarterback can help change the fortunes of this team.

NFL Power Rankings: 49ers

32. Cleveland Browns

Last week: 32
Good times in Cleveland between the Indians and upcoming Cavaliers ring ceremony. The way the Browns played down the stretch on Sunday, you probably can’t even count out a surprise win this week either.

NFL Power Rankings: Cleveland Browns

— Written by Bryan Fischer, an award-winning college football columnist and member of the Athlon Contributor Network. You can follow him from coast-to-coast on Twitter, Instagram and Snapchat at @BryanDFischer.