After just three weeks of play in the 2022 regular season, there’s a new No. 1 team in the NFL, and that’s a pretty big surprise. The new-look Dolphins have fought their way to the top with back-to-back victories over the Ravens and Bills.
As predicted, the early results are unpredictable. While some of the familiar forces still remain close to the top, there are plenty more shockers and disappointments to come as all 32 teams try to discover who they are.
From the rising contenders to the slipping contenders, from the most successful clubs to the most chaotic organizations on the pitch, here’s the latest look at the league from best to worst:
MORE: Jalen Hurts and Lamar Jackson emerge as MVP leaders after Week 3
NFL Power Rankings Week 4
1. Miami Dolphins 3-0 (Previous Position: 8)
The Dolphins have an impressive opening resume in Mike McDaniel, with a multitude of wins – losses, big comebacks and grueling battles of attrition. They maximize their offensive efficiency and defensive aggressiveness to frighteningly earn first place after beating the previously “best team.”
2. Buffalo Bills 2-1 (1)
The Bills dominated game volume and possession time against the Dolphins but made just a few too many critical errors and failed to finish. Josh Allen is still rolling and his defense was impressive in the Miami Heat loss even if well undermanned in the secondary.
3. Philly Eagles 3-0 (4)
The Eagles have been blasting a favorable schedule all season as they look to move beyond dethroning the Cowboys in the NFC East and contend for the conference championship. Jalen Hurts and his receivers deserve a lot of credit, but now so does the loaded playmaking defense.
4. Green Bay Packers 2-1 (10)
The Packers pulled a disastrous Week 1 out of their system with their defensive dominance and offensive resilience in support of Aaron Rodgers. They’re back to prove they’re a complete team and also firmly shortlisted to clinch the NFC title.
5. Tampa Bay Buccaneers 2-1 (3)
The Buccaneers did their best to win with limited offensive security around Tom Brady, but just didn’t have enough against the Packers. They’re still figuring out the level of their defensive identity under Todd Bowles.
6. Kansas City Chiefs 2-1 (2)
What was that? Patrick Mahomes and the offense went through some rare dysfunctions while facing a zone defense in Indianapolis. Her latest adjustment should be to streamline her weapons a bit more instead of being too determined to scatter the ball around.
MORE: How Chiefs special teams mistakes cost Kansas City stunning loss
7.Los Angeles Rams 2-1 (5)
The Rams flexed a bit more defensively in Arizona but held off from breaking thanks to Aaron Donald and the rest of their front seven covering up some secondary issues. Matthew Stafford also gets the crucial help he needs to get out of a mini burglary.
8. Baltimore Ravens 2-1 (11)
How about Lamar Jackson? Jackson has once again become an absolute passing and running force to make up for any other issues they may have. The defense is giving up big plays, but they’re finally asserting their opportunistic potential to make more big plays in response.
9. Denver Broncos 2-1 (12)
The Broncos’ offensive struggles in trying to get Russell Wilson and Nathaniel Hackett on the same side are one thing, but they’ve proven they still have a strong backbone of a defense to pull them through. They’re back on track for a playoff push right there with the Chiefs in the AFC West.
10. Minnesota Vikings 2-1 (9)
The Vikings were a bit muddled with their offensive identity with Kevin O’Connell, with Kirk Cousins and Justin Jefferson cooling off after Week 1 and giving way to the rushing attack. The 3:4 defense will also be a rollercoaster ride. But they should take a positive view of their start to the season with two division wins.
11 Dallas Cowboys 2-1 (15)
The Cowboys shocked everyone with their strong defensive performance to make up for Dak Prescott against the Bengals and Giants. But it’s also Cooper Rush’s impressive, efficient play that keeps them afloat early in the NFC East race just behind the Eagles.
12. San Francisco 49ers 1-2 (6)
The 49ers offense has made a bumpy swing back to Jimmy Garoppolo. They need to find a way to be a more complementary high-floor force without Trent Williams’ support for their disruptive defense.
13. Cincinnati Bengals 1-2 (16)
The Bengals looked a lot more like the Bengals from 2021, with Joe Burrow taking no sacks and getting the downfield passing game going. Her defense also responded like the solid complementary playmaking unit that she can be. The next part gets the rushing attack rolling again.
MORE: How Doug Pederson has the AFC South-leading Jaguars firing on all cylinders
14. Jacksonville Jaguars 2-1 (25)
The Jaguars made a complete 180, with the organized and offensively savvy Doug Pederson flipping the script from Urban Meyer’s mayhem. Trevor Lawrence looks to be the role of an elite passer and any youth-related changes in defense are paying off early.
15. Cleveland Browns 2-1 (19)
The Browns should be 3-0 if it weren’t for the poor final two minutes of Week 2. Without Deshaun Watson, their Nick Chubb, Jacoby Brissett and Amari Cooper offense has found a way to thrive more than enough. However, Myles Garrett and the defense could rev up a little more.
16. New York Giants 2-1 (13)
They had to catch up with the offensive problems of the Giants around Daniel Jones and Saquon Barkley against the defense of the Cowboys. They’re not good enough to rely on constantly winning battles of attrition.
17. Los Angeles Chargers 1-2 (7)
What was that? Justin Herbert plus bad ribs plus no Keenan Allen plus no real running game isn’t the best formula, especially when adding a side of an injured Joey Bosa to bring down the running defense. The pressure for a team with massive expectations is already on Brandon Staley.
18. Indianapolis Colts 1-1-1 (27)
The Colts drew a classic game under Frank Reich: They dug deep after a big win against the Chiefs at home when they found their backs to the wall after two lousy street performances. They should have more confidence that they can beat anyone with a clean game plan without a dominant Jonathan Taylor.
19.Chicago Bears 2-1 (23)
The Bears don’t get style points for Justin Fields pulling down limited passing offense, but Roquan Smith and the defense do their job to play reliable strong running play, even more so without David Montgomery.
20. Tennessee Titans 1-2 (22)
With the right offensive combination of Derrick Henry and Ryan Tannehill, a tough home win for the Titans was overdue. They also made the right defensive plays to confuse and confuse Derek Carr. Like the Colts, they’re right back in the AFC South race.
21 Pittsburgh Steelers 1-2 (14)
The Steelers don’t have enough offensive juice with Mitchell Trubisky to make up for their significant defensive deficits without TJ Watt. Matt Canada and Mike Tomlin need to be creative and maybe make a big change from rookie Kenny Pickett.
22Arizona Cardinals 1-2 (17)
The Cardinals are playing a tighter defense behind JJ Watt, but they’re still inconsistent at stopping the run and being effective in cover. Their real concern is the fact that despite the big new contract, Kyler Murray insists on being first and not just making all the plays it takes to win games.
MORE: Breaking down the Patriots’ QB depth chart without Mac Jones
23.New England Patriots 1-2 (18)
Credit Mac Jones and the offense for seeing the rushing attack ramp up again with a revolving door receiving the corps. Unfortunately, at that moment, big turnovers and Jones’ ankle injury happened. Even Bill Belichick is not used to a defense with so many blatant holes.
24. New Orleans Saints 1-2 (20)
The Saints marched into the Panthers with a sloppy but sometimes exciting offense centered around the injured Jameis Winston, leaving questions about whether they need a QB change. They’re also still figuring out their post-Sean Payton identity with defensive-minded Dennis Allen.
25.Detroit Lions 1-2 (21)
The Lions will be involved in many more exciting close games because of an explosive offense but their defense is always a major drag behind Aidan Hutchinson. There’s a difference between being competitive and actually winning consistently.
26. Washington Commanders 1-2 (24)
The commanders also don’t make a hasty QB move from Carson Wentz, although the passing game against the Eagles had a rocky outing. The real problem is a defense that can’t stop anything from putting a lot of pressure on him.
27. Las Vegas Raiders 0-3 (26)
The Raiders’ offense is complicated, sure, but it’s up to them not to get the desired results with Derek Carr early on under Josh McDaniels. You can’t afford to be so lost and find out things early or late in games when Maxx Crosby doesn’t have much help defensively.
28. New York Jets 1-2 (28)
Joe Flacco gave them some respectable downfield passes to energize the redesigned offense, but it’s time to see what Zach Wilson can do with a higher head. Defense has blitzed a bit for Robert Saleh in their still developing phase.
29.Atlanta Falcons 1-2 (31)
Marcus Mariota lightened the Falcons offense with some fighting spirit to lift Cordarrelle Patterson, Drake London and Kyle Pitts. The defense did well to excel as they are like the NFC South Lions overall.
30.Carolina Panthers 1-2 (32)
The Panthers’ offense with Baker Mayfield leaves a lot to be desired, but their defense and special teams were able to clinch a win. Matt Rhule’s relief is likely to be temporary with some very tough games ahead.
31.Seattle Seahawks 1-2 (29)
The Seahawks are getting more than expected offensively around Geno Smith, but their defense is as poor as advertised at all levels against pass and run after the initial emotional week 1 performance.
32. Houston Texans 0-2-1 (30)
The Texans have found a rushing jewel in Dameon Pierce and some young players on defense are also performing well for Lovie Smith, but they seemed to hit a QB wall with Davis Mills.
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