Now with every team playing at least half of their games for their 2017 campaigns, it is becoming more and more noticeable that some struggles may be without a cure. Teams looking to find a glimmer of hope after disappointing starts have not been able to get out of the ashes, some like the New Orleans Saints have become the hottest teams at the halfway mark.
Quarterback injuries for the Houston Texans and Green Bay Packers have dropped them not only in division title hopes, but also in this week’s rankings, proving that without their stars, the rest of the season will be unbearable. As for others, many are starting to prove themselves, such as the Philadelphia Eagles and Los Angeles Rams, regardless of competition.
Looking forward to Week 10, expect more teams to either prove or disappoint for later season aspirations, as this will be a common case for not only later Power Rankings, but with the 2017 NFL season’s Week 10 Power Rankings.
New England Patriots (6-2) (Last Week: 1) The Patriots had a Week 9 bye sandwiched in between AFC West matchups, following a Week 8 victory against the Chargers. This Sunday, they’ll visit Denver in primetime, where they look to move their win streak to five, before their AFC West strand ends against the Raiders the week later.
Philadelphia Eagles (8-1)(Last Week: 3) Carson Wentz is not just making his case but proving he is the front runner for MVP, as the Eagles continued to dominate with a 51-23 win against the Broncos. The NFL leaders at 8-1 get a much deserved bye this week before their fourth division game of the season occurs the following Sunday night against the rival Cowboys.
Pittsburgh Steelers (6-2)(Last Week: 2) The Steelers Week 9 bye allowed them to watch fellow AFC competitor Kansas City fall behind in the AFC home-field advantage race, now leaving only Pittsburgh and New England. Looking ahead, the Steelers will only see two teams above .500 in the second half of their season, and before they host the 5-3 Titans on Thursday night in Week 11, they will visit Indianapolis this Sunday.
Seattle Seahawks (5-3)(Last Week: 4) The Seahawks were held up at home against the Redskins 17-14, moving them behind in the divisional race. Taking a step back on their season, they’ll be able to reiterate positive play and stay undefeated in the division on primetime this Thursday, when they visit the .500 Cardinals, who could be looking to make a surprise run in the second half of the season.
New Orleans Saints (6-2)(Last Week: 6) The Saints have kept rolling since an 0-2 start, wining six straight games and only one game behind the top spot in the NFC. Now leading their division, they look to keep their winning ways against winnable competition, but first will play the 5-3 Bills this Sunday, who themselves are looking to get back into the playoffs for the first time this century.
Kansas City Chiefs (6-3) (Last Week: 5) After being the final undefeated team this season, the Chiefs have lost three of their last four games, capped with a 28-17 loss at the Cowboys last Sunday. Finding themselves behind the superior teams of the AFC, they will need to address the issues that hurt them the most, most prominently both offensive and defensive lines. Fortunately for Kansas City, they’ll have a bye this week to work on their problems before visiting the current 1-7 New York Giants in Week 11.
Los Angeles Rams (6-2)(Last Week: 8) The Rams took advantage of playing the now 1-7 Giants last Sunday, winning 51-17 as they are now lead alone in the NFC West thanks to a Seahawks lost. They have been able to get help by playing average competition, and will be able to continue that when they host the Texans next Sunday, however their challenge will see a stark increase following their Week 10 matchup with their next four out of five matchups coming against teams with at least five wins.
Carolina Panthers (6-3) (Last Week: 9) Cam Newton and the Carolina Panthers took a fantastic division win against the Atlanta Falcons on Sunday, winning 20-17 after controlling the last three quarters. However, they are still a half-game behind the division leading Saints, therefore not allowing them to have a loss to give. Next week, they’ll be able to sneak another win before a Week 11 bye against the Dolphins again at home, in front of the primetime lights of Monday Night Football.
Minnesota Vikings (6-2)(Last Week: 11) The Vikings had a Week 9 bye to split their season in half, after winning four consecutive games in October. Next week, however, their schedule starts to stiffen up, as they visit the Redskins, who are looking to get out of .500 after some quality wins in their season. Following that, the Vikings’ November gets no easier, as they see games against the Rams, Lions, Falcons, and Panthers, four games that will end up shaping their playoff hopes.
Dallas Cowboys (5-3) (Last Week: 13) Not only did the Cowboys manage to keep Ezekial Elliott this week, but he helped in giving his team a 28-17 home victory against the AFC Chiefs on Sunday. Now on a three game winning streak, they’ll go on the road next week as their schedule does not give the 5-3 Cowboys a break, when they visit the Falcons on Sunday before a Week 11 Sunday night divisional matchup against the Eagles.
Jacksonville Jaguars (5-3)(Last Week: 12) Although an ejection may have been the story of their game this week, the Jacksonville Jaguars still managed to win at home against the struggling Cincinnati Bengals 23-7 on Sunday. Their stress free schedule will continue, as only one of their remaining games come against teams currently above .500, however it will remain to see if they will still be able to continue to excel against the lack of competition – which has been an issue at some times this season – where they start their second half of their season against the Chargers on Sunday.
Buffalo Bills (5-3)(Last Week: 7) The Buffalo Bills’ quick break was not help for them, as they lost to the Jets 34-21, moving them behind their playoff aspirations. Now 5-3 and a game behind the Patriots for the AFC East, they’ll need to get their act together as they see tough competition at home next week, playing against the six game winning streak New Orleans Saints.
Washington Redskins (4-4) (Last Week: 16) The Redskins’ season summary took a similar approach on Sunday, where they one on the road against the Seahawks 17-14, showing that this .500 teams could be characterized by their thrilling wins or disappointing losses. Looking to get back in the playoffs after not clinching a spot last season, they’ll host a hot yet beatable Vikings team on Sunday when they host the Vikings.
Atlanta Falcons (4-4) (Last Week: 10) The Falcons goal to return to the playoffs took a bigger blow last week when they lost last week against the Panthers, losing four of their last five in a quest to erase last season’s miserable ending. Unfortunately for them, their next two games before Thanksgiving will maintain to not be an easy quest, as a Week 11 visit to Seattle follows this week’s home game against the 5-3 Cowboys.
Detroit Lions (4-4)(Last Week: 19) They may have been at Lambeau Field on Monday night, but the Detroit Lions benefited from an absent Aaron Rodgers as they beat the Green Bay Packer 30-17. Now two games behind the division leading Vikings, next week home game against the 0-8 Browns will give them a near gift to catch up in the NFC North as the second half of their 2017 season begins on Sunday.
Oakland Raiders (4-5) (Last Week: 17) The Raiders managed to hold off the Dolphins in Miami on Sunday night, now nearing closer towards .500. With playoff aspirations starting to be on hold, their Week 10 bye allows Oakland to return the drawing board before a three game home streak against the Patriots, Broncos, and Giants could help be a final turn around to their season.
Tennessee Titans (5-3) (Last Week: 20) The Titans prevailed against the Ravens last Sunday, winning 23-20 and now tied atop the AFC South. Looking to get back into the playoffs for the first time since the 2008 season, they’ll have another chance to get an easy win when the Cincinnati Bengals visit next Sunday for a noon game.
New York Jets (4-5)(Last Week: 23) The New York Jets stole a win against the Buffalo Bills on Thursday night, winning 34-21. They’ll go on a two game streak against the NFC South in the next three weeks, separated by a Week 11 bye, but first starts with a visit to Tampa Bay this Sunday, where the Jets will try to ride another winning streak in an 0-16 expected season.
Los Angeles Chargers (3-5)(Last Week: 22) The Los Angeles Chargers had a Week 9 bye to help them re-navigate their season after going .375 in the first half of their 2017 season. Next week, they’ll play their first game of November, traveling to Jacksonville to take on the defensive-minded Jaguars, who although are 5-3 have yet to find an accurate offense.
Denver Broncos (3-5)(Last Week: 14) The Broncos’ playoff hopes are at a low, now tied at the bottom of the AFC West following an embarrassment on the road against the Eagles, losing 51-23. They have the luck of getting a bit of an easier opponent: the 6-2 New England Patriots in Denver on Sunday night. Looking to get their first win in seven weeks, they hope to upset the defending champions and make a historic transformation to their 2017 season.
Houston Texans (3-5)(Last Week: 15) The Texans disappointed without Deshaun Watson on Sunday, showing that it will be a struggle the rest of the season with their rookie quarterback injured. Now two games behind the divisional race in the AFC South, they are now looking at being the dream crushers for others’ seasons, especially next week when they visit the soaring 6-2 Rams in Los Angeles.
Arizona Cardinals (4-4)(Last Week: 27) The Cardinals still survived without Carson Palmer, winning in San Francisco 20-10, keeping the 49ers without a win this season. Now at .500, they’ll be able to see if they can still be a challenge in the NFC West, only one game behind the Seahawks at second. On Thursday night, they’ll be able to host the Seahawks to show how serious the Cardinals are for their second half of 2017, a quick turn to be able to get back into this season.
Baltimore Ravens (4-5)(Last Week: 21) The Ravens could not keep their wings flying following their blowout against the Dolphins in Week 8, losing last week to the Titans 23-20. Battling for .500 their entire season, they’ll get a Week 10 bye before visiting the Packers the following week, where without Aaron Rodgers gives the Baltimore Ravens a great and favorable chance of getting to 5-5.
Miami Dolphins (4-4)(Last Week: 26) Jay Cutler and the Miami Dolphins could not close it out in Oakland on Sunday night, losing 27-24 and falling back to .500. Next week, they’ll get an extra day to rest with a Monday night primetime game at the Carolina Panthers, whose 6-3 record does not have an absence of flawed play throughout the season thus far.
Chicago Bears (3-5) (Last Week: 24) The Bears had a Week 9 bye following a 20-12 loss to the New Orleans Saints to close out October. Although their season looks to be done, they could sneak out a win next week when the rival Packers come to visit next Sunday. Without Aaron Rodgers, the Chicago Bears have an advantage-seeking chance to not only steal a win, but tie their rivals through ten weeks at the bottom of the division.
Green Bay Packers (4-4)(Last Week: 18) The Packers continue to pummel without their star Aaron Rodgers, losing a divisional game at home against the Lions, dropping to .500 mid-way through their season. Although next week’s game in Chicago would usually be an easy win for Green Bay, without their starting quarterback this game may prove to be a struggle, as they are most likely favored to lose another divisional game.
Cincinnati Bengals (3-5) (Last Week: 25) The Bengals’ empty season continued in Jacksonville last weekend, where their offense disappointed again, losing 23-7. Their hope for the season is gone, and they now look to simply challenge their opponents to their full strength before looking ahead at the NFL Draft. Next week, they visit the AFC South co-leading Tennessee Titans, who although atop their division have yet to prove poise and comfortability through their season.
Indianapolis Colts (3-6)(Last Week: 30) The Indianapolis Colts stole a divisional win in Houston last week, winning 20-14 to get their third win this season. However next week’s challenge will grow substantially, looking to upset the Steelers in Indianapolis, trying to ruin their opponents’ confidence for their Super Bowl hopes.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers (2-6)(Last Week: 29) The Buccaneers’ disappointing season topped itself this week after losing to the Saints 30-10, with reports now out that their quarterback Jameis Winston will not play next week for unspecified reasons. Although close to a postseason spot last season, the Buccaneers are at the bottom of the NFL in 2017, and before they can look ahead to their off season in eight weeks, they first will look to get a positive win against the Jets on Sunday.
New York Giants (1-7) (Last Week: 28) The Giants have not just disappointed this season, the organization has been a pure humiliation, especially with a 51-17 home loss to the Rams on Sunday. Trying to keep away from the absolute bottom, they will look to get a win in San Francisco this Sunday, where the 49ers will look to not start 0-10.
San Francisco 49ers (0-9)(Last Week: 31) The San Francisco 49ers have the worst record through Week 9 of the 2017 NFL season. Looking to get their first win, they have no better chance than next week, right before their bye, when the equally disgusting 1-7 New York Giants visit for a game between the worst.
Cleveland Browns (0-8) (Last Week: 32) The Cleveland Browns were lucky to not start November with a loss, due to Week 9 bye being a highlight to their season so far. With eight games left, they will hope to find a win, and may be able to sneak out in upset in Detroit next week, as long as they can have luck on their side.