NFL Power Rankings: Week 10

Mike and Mike weigh in on week 10 of the ESPN.com NFL Power Rankings.

Cardinals or Patriots? That was the big question facing ESPN’s Power Panel (a group of more than 80 writers, editors and TV personalities) after an eventful Week 9.

 By crushing Denver, No. 1 the past three weeks, New England (No. 3 last week) made a strong case for the top spot. But Arizona (No. 2 last week) also bolstered its candidacy, improving to 7-1 after a convincing victory at Dallas.

 So who’s most deserving? In a close vote, the Patriots got the nod. The Broncos dropped to No. 3, with the Eagles and Colts rounding out the top five. The Steelers, up seven spots to No. 7, are the week’s biggest mover.

 Will we have another tough decision to make next week? Probably not. With New England on a bye and Arizona hosting the 3-5 Rams, signs point to our top two staying intact. That said, the season-long trend shouldn’t be ignored. No team has held the No. 1 spot for more than three weeks, so another shake-up is likely in the not-too-distant future.

 Note: The comments below are provided by ESPN Stats & Information.

2014 Power Rankings: Week 10
RANK TEAM / RECORD TRENDING COMMENTS
1
 

2
Last Week: 3

The Patriots posted the second-largest margin of victory in the Brady-Manning series and scored more points in the first half (27) than Denver has allowed in a game all season.
2

Last Week: 2

Arizona recorded its first regular-season win in Dallas since the Gene Stallings era (1989). The Cardinals’ win also completed a season sweep of their former division (4-0 vs. NFC East).
3
 

2
Last Week: 1

Peyton Manning threw as many interceptions targeting wide receivers (two) in Sunday’s loss as he had all season. TE Julius Thomas received a career-low two targets.
4
Eagles
6-2
 

1
Last Week: 5

Mark Sanchez sighting! Sanchez was 15-of-22 for two touchdowns and two interceptions, his first two-touchdown performance since 2012 (Week 6). Could Sanchez’s success make 2014 even worse for Jets fans?
5
Colts
6-3
 

4
Last Week: 9

The Giants blitzed Andrew Luck on 29 dropbacks Monday night, most by a Giants defense since 2006. It didn’t work. Luck was 25-for-46 for 354 yards and four touchdowns in the blowout.
6
Lions
6-2

Last Week: 6

The Lions’ offense didn’t exactly feast against the Vikings, Saints and Falcons (24 points or less in all three). It gets harder from here against the Dolphins, Cardinals and Patriots.
7
 

7
Last Week: 14

Ben Roethlisberger is the first player in NFL history with six passing touchdowns in consecutive games. Martavis Bryant and Markus Wheaton (three combined TDs Sunday) are complementing Antonio Brown well.
8
 

1
Last Week: 7

The Packers had won five straight games against the Bears at Lambeau before last season’s 27-20 Chicago win in Week 9. Aaron Rodgers is playing plenty well enough for revenge.
9
 

5
Last Week: 4

The Cowboys were 6-1 at one point this season with back-to-back home games coming up. They are now 6-3 and still have four games left against division rivals.
10

Last Week: 10

A six-point home win over the Raiders won’t exactly calm the nerves. Russell Wilson had a career-high 12 off-target passes Sunday, but Seattle escaped and hosts the Giants next.
11
Bengals
5-2-1
 

1
Last Week: 12

Cincinnati hasn’t lost a regular-season home game since Week 17 in 2012 (13-0-1). Against Jacksonville on Sunday, the Bengals rode Jeremy Hill (154 rushing yards, two touchdowns), who produced his first career 100-yard game.
12
Chiefs
5-3
 

3
Last Week: 15

Alex Smith has 10 touchdowns and one interception in his past seven games, yet somehow the Chiefs are the only team still without a receiving touchdown by a wide receiver.
13
 

5
Last Week: 18

The Charges are welcome in South Beach anytime (having lost six straight there). Sunday’s result was Miami’s first shutout in 123 games and the largest since a 42-0 win over the Chiefs in 1987.
14
Ravens
5-4
 

1
Last Week: 13

Joe Flacco couldn’t handle the Steelers’ blitz. Flacco finished 12-of-23 with an interception against at least five rushers, averaging a season-low 4.0 yards per attempt, and was sacked three times.
15
Saints
4-4
 

2
Last Week: 17

Has New Orleans finally turned the corner? Wins against Green Bay and Carolina are promising signs, but the Saints still have to face four straight opponents that are at or above .500.
16
49ers
4-4
 

5
Last Week: 11

Won’t try that again soon. Colin Kaepernick’s fumble on a QB sneak from the Rams’ 1-yard line was his first career rush from an opponent’s 1-yard line.
17
 

9
Last Week: 8

Philip Rivers was 8-of-17 for 110 yards and three interceptions Sunday on passes beyond the line of scrimmage, his lowest completion total on those throws under coach Mike McCoy (start of 2013).
18
Bills
5-3
 

2
Last Week: 16

Here are the quarterbacks with more touchdowns per game than Kyle Orton: Peyton Manning, Andrew Luck, Tom Brady, Ben Roethlisberger and Aaron Rodgers. That’s it.
19
Browns
5-3

Last Week: 19

Brian Hoyer has a 59.4 completion percentage on throws 10 yards or less, worst among qualified quarterbacks, but his 51.4 completion percentage deeper than 20 yards downfield is fifth-best.
20
Texans
4-5
 

1
Last Week: 21

The Texans are 1-7 against the NFC in the past two seasons, including 1-3 this year. Houston has also lost five straight games in November, including Sunday’s loss to Philly.
21
Bears
3-5
 

2
Last Week: 23

Jay Cutler has never won in Green Bay. Not only is he 0-3 against the Packers on the road, but he has never posted a QBR above 13.2 in those games.
22
Panthers
3-5-1
 

2
Last Week: 20

Cam Newton completed a career-low 10 passes with a career-worst 35.7 completion percentage Sunday. Newton totaled nine overthrown passes, tied for his second-most in a game in his career.
23
 

2
Last Week: 25

Sunday was Matt Asiata’s second game this season with three rushing touchdowns. No other player has more than two rushing touchdowns in a game.
24
Giants
3-5
 

2
Last Week: 22

Eli Manning was 0-for-7 on throws more than 20 yards downfield Monday. This season, he has completed 3 of 24 deep attempts (13 percent). The only quarterback with a worse percentage? Geno Smith (12 percent).
25
Rams
3-5
 

2
Last Week: 27

St. Louis scored its first win in San Francisco since 2007 and held the 49ers to 10 points. The Rams sacked Colin Kaepernick a career-high eight times.
26
 

2
Last Week: 24

Not a comfortable return for Robert Griffin III, who was sacked five times Sunday (one shy of his career high). Colt McCoy (80.8) has the best QBR of a Washington starter.
27
 

1
Last Week: 26

Back-to-back road division games await the 2-6 Falcons. Any hope starts with wins in Tampa Bay and Carolina in the next two weeks.
28
Titans
2-6

Last Week: 28

Tennessee’s next three opponents are all above .500 (Ravens, Steelers and Eagles). The Titans have to improve on their league-worst 29.5 third-down conversion rate.
29

Last Week: 29

The Bucs are approaching rock bottom. Mike Glennon has thrown an interception in all five starts this season. Tampa Bay lost to the Browns for the first time since 1995.
30
Jets
1-8

Last Week: 30

The Jets face the Steelers, Bills, Dolphins and Vikings in the next four games. Four more losses and they’ll tie a franchise-record losing streak (12 straight in 1995-96).
31

Last Week: 31

This season is Jacksonville’s third straight 1-8 start. The Jags will always have Week 7’s win over the Browns (though it could mean they’re stuck with the second overall draft pick).
32

Last Week: 32

Oakland was feisty in Seattle Sunday, losing by only six points and scoring 24 at CenturyLink Field. The Raiders’ reward? A Denver team coming off a loss to the Patriots.
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