NFL Division Rankings after Week 1
How the West was won
Jay Biggerstaff-USA TODAY Sports
The first week of the NFL season is over, and it was all about the West: the AFC West and NFC West are a combined 8-0, sealed by the Las Vegas Raiders' thrilling victory over the Baltimore Ravens in overtime on Monday Night Football. How do the divisions stack up after Week 1? Let's take a look...
8. NFC North
Must have thought they were playing baseball as this division took an ofer. It was awful, and the best team was given the biggest beating—the Green Bay Packers via the New Orleans Saints. The Lions and Bears were competitive, sort of, against NFC West foes. The Vikings continue to show why they are nothing but hype and hope.
7. AFC South
Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports
When the Houston Texans are the only team with a victory, you know things have to be teetering on awful. (The Texans' win should come with an asterisk because it was played against a team that was 1-15 last season, and a coach that belongs in college football.) The Titans were throttled at home by the Arizona Cardinals. The injury-riddled Colts had their secondary strafed by Russell Wilson and the Seahawks.
6. NFC East
John David Mercer-USA TODAY Sports
This was a difficult decision: which East was worse? The nod goes to the NFC East because the Philadelphia Eagles' victory came against the Atlanta Falcons, a putrid bunch. The Cowboys played the Super Bowl champs tough, but are going to have to learn to run the ball. The Giants were pathetic at home against the Broncos. Washington lost its quarterback, Ryan Fitzpatrick, and the game to a good Los Angeles Chargers team.
5. AFC East
Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports
One point separated the AFC East from going winless. Sure, if the Miami Dolphins and New England Patriots had tied, we would have had two 0-1 teams and a pair of 0-0-1 teams. The Jets are horrible. No way to make Zach Wilson and Robert Saleh's debut pretty. It wasn't. The Bills, a team expected to contend for the Super Bowl, watched a lead at home evaporate against the Steelers. Not a good omen for the 17-game season.
4. NFC South
Bob Self/Florida Times-Union
This was actually a pleasant surprise. Tampa Bay won, barely. The New Orleans Saints, with Jameis Winston in charge, were a juggernaut against the Packers. Sam Darnold got his revenge against the Jets. Arthur Smith and the Falcons didn't deliver anything against the Philadelphia Eagles. That performance in the first game for their coach was beyond stinky.
3. AFC North
AP Photo/Aaron Doster
Two teams won and two teams lost. The surprise is the Cincinnati Bengals are one of the teams in first place. The Steelers had a nice rally at Buffalo. They catch the Raiders in Pittsburgh this week coming off their Monday Night Football thriller. A short week and a trip East should set Pittsburgh up nicely to go 2-0. On the downside, the Ravens lost a thriller in overtime despite all their injury woes. The Browns battled the Chiefs for four quarters but in the end wound up with the "L."
2. AFC West
Chris Pedota, NorthJersey.com
The decision to put the AFC West in this slot, despite going 4-0, is based on Denver's win at the New York Giants—while impressive, it does not carry enough weight against the West teams in the other conference. The Orange Crush was impressive against a Big Blue team that is dismal. The Chiefs are fantastic. The Chargers won a close game on the road. They specialized in losing those contests the last two years, no matter where they were played. The Raiders' game with the Ravens was nothing short of marvelous. Not convinced they are anywhere near "real."
1. NFC West
The biggest surprise out of this foursome was the beating the Arizona Cardinals put on the Titans in Tennessee. Could Kliff Kingsbury have things figured out? Will be intriguing to watch in this tough division. The Rams rocked the Bears as Matthew Stafford looked like a new quarterback. Don't fall for the fact the 49ers almost blew a huge lead against Detroit. Like what we saw getting the lead, which is more important than trying to run down a team from way behind. And the Seahawks, Pete Carroll and Russell Wilson are simply marvels.