Matt Ryan #2 of the Atlanta Falcons gestures at the line of scrimmage during the first half against the Green Bay Packers at Mercedes-Benz Stadium on September 17, 2017 in Atlanta, Georgia.
(Sept. 17, 2017 - Source: Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images North America)
1. (5.) Atlanta Falcons 2-0
The Atlanta Falcons put on quite a show in the first NFL game at the new Mercedes-Benz Stadium. Jumping out to a 31-7 lead early in the third quarter there was never any doubt about a win over the Green Bay Packers.
2. (6.) Kansas City Chiefs 2-0
Rookie RB Kareem Hunt keeps making the headlines as he rushed for 2 touchdowns in the 27-20 win against the Philadelphia Eagles. He now has 3 rushing touchdowns on the season and averages 7.6 yards per carry.
3. (3.) Pittsburgh Steelers 2-0
The Steelers aren’t playing flashy but they are winning ball games. Two early touchdown passes from Ben Roethlisberger paved the way to a 26-9 win over the Minnesota Vikings.
4. (4.) Oakland Raiders 2-0
Derek Carr went 23-of-28 for 230 yards, 3 touchdowns and a QB rating of 136.6. Michael Crabtree caught 3 touchdown passes, the backfield rushed for 180 yards and the O-line protected the passer perfectly. The Raiders may well have the most exciting offense in the NFL.
5. (7.) New England Patriots 1-1
Let’s just say Tom Brady is back as he completes 30 of 39 passes for 447 yards, 3 touchdowns and a passer rating of 139.6 en route to a 36-20 win at the New Orleans Saints.
6. (9.) Denver Broncos (2-0)
I keep wondering how much better Trevor Simien would be if he had a better downfield vision when he has to improvise or scramble. It didn’t matter much on Sunday as the Broncos thumped the Dallas Cowboys 42-17 anyway.
7. (1.) Green Bay Packers (1-1)
Including last season’s NFC Championship Game this was Green Bay’s second painful loss in Atlanta within a year. On a positive note, Aaron Rodgers threw the 300th touchdown of his career, ranking him tied 10th with John Elway.
8. (8.) Seattle Seahawks (1-1)
It wasn’t easy and it wasn’t pretty but after a little more than 7.5 quarters the Seahwaks finally found the end zone for the first time this season and secured a 12-9 win over the San Francisco 49ers.
9. (11.) Detroit Lions (2-0)
DE Ezekiel Ansah showed why he was a Pro Bowler and NFC sacks leader in 2015. He brought down QB Eli Manning three times as the Lions win at the New York Giants 24-10.
10. (16.) Tampa Bay Buccaneers (1-0)
Tampa Bay’s defense limited the Chicago Bears to 20 yards on the ground and forced four turnovers en route to a 29-7 win in their season opener.
11. (2.) Dallas Cowboys (1-1)
Granted, the Cowboys had to play catch-up early against the Denver Broncos but rushing for a total of 40 yards and one first down won’t win you many games. Ezekiel Elliott managed just 8 yards on 9 carries.
12. (13.) Carolina Panthers (2-0)
After giving up just three points each in their first two games of the season the Panthers rank first in defense. According to DE Julius Peppers, it’s the best defense he’s ever played on.
13. (14.) Baltimore Ravens (2-0)
The Baltimore Ravens recorded 10 takeaways this season (8 interceptions and 2 forced fumbles). That’s twice as many as the Detroit Lions and Jacksonville Jaguars have, who are ranked second in this category.
14. (10.) Minnesota Vikings (1-1)
QB Sam Bradford was unable to play due to a knee injury but is expected to be active in week 3 at the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
15. (18.) Tennessee Titans (1-1)
This was more like the Titans we expected to see in 2017 as they win 37-16 at the Jacksonville Jaguars. Nursing a big lead in the second half they amassed a total of 179 rushing yards in this game.
16. (12.) Philadelphia Eagles (1-1)
Despite the loss QB Carson Wentz keeps demonstrating that he belongs in this league. Philly’s pass rush recorded four sacks for a second straight game, ranking them 4th in the league to date.
17. (17.) Arizona Cardinals (1-1)
The Cardinals never had a lead at the Indianapolis Colts until S Tyrann Mathieu intercepted QB Jacoby Brissett on the first play in overtime to set up the game-winning field goal by Phil Dawson.
18. (21.) Houston Texans (1-1)
QB Deshaun Watson was Houston’s top rusher with 67 yards and scored the only touchdown of the game on a 49-yard run as the Texans left Cincinnati with a 13-9 victory.
19. (24.) Miami Dolphins (1-0)
The unretired Jay Cutler was very effective in his Miami debut, completing 24 of 33 passes for 230 yards and 1 touchdown. Jay Ajayi added 122 yards on 28 carries as the Dolphins win their season opener 19-17 at the Los Angeles Chargers.
20. (26.) Washington Redskins (1-1)
RB Chris Thompson ran for 77 yards and 2 touchdowns on 3 attempts. That’s what I call efficient.
21. (15.) New York Giants (0-2)
The Giants honored the 10th anniversary of their Super Bowl XLII victory over the New England Patriots during halftime of their Monday Night Football game against the Detroit Lions but they aren’t even playing like a playoff contender this year.
22. (19.) Los Angeles Rams 1-1
The Washington Redskins brought the Rams back to reality. Los Angeles had no answer to Washington’s ground attack and surrendered a whopping 229 yards.
23. (22.) Cincinnati Bengals 0-2
If you cannot win your home games, especially against division and conference rivals, then you will struggle making the playoffs. The Bengals have yet to find the end zone this season.
24. (20.) Jacksonville Jaguars 1-1
The Jaguars gave up 30 unanswered points against the Tennessee Titans, 17 of those in the third quarter alone. QB Blake Bortles threw two interceptions and lost a fumble.
25. (23.) New Orleans Saints 0-2
The Kansas City Chiefs upset the New England Patriots last week and the Saints seemingly had to pay the price for it. New Orleans didn’t play badly but they were outplayed on every level.
26. (25.) Buffalo Bills 1-1
RB LeSean McCoy was held to 9 yards rushing on 12 carries against the Carolina Panthers. In fact, the Bills managed only 176 total yards against one of the best defenses in the league.
27. (27.) Los Angeles Chargers 0-2
You have to feel sorry for the South Korean rookie K Younghoe Koo, who missed a game-tying field goal last week and a game-winning field goal this week to have the Miami Dolphins spoil the Chargers’ home debut in Los Angeles.
28. (28.) Indianapolis Colts 0-2
QB Jacoby Brissett played a solid game against the Arizona Cardinals until his fatal interception on the first play in overtime. QB Andrew Luck (shoulder) has been ruled out for week 3 against the Cleveland Browns and is likely going to be inactive for week 4 as well.
29. (29.) Chicago Bears 0-2
It took the Bears 58:17 minutes to avoid a shutout at the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Chicago was held to 20 rushing yards and QB Mike Glennon threw two interceptions on this return to Raymond James Stadium, where he spent his previous three seasons.
30. (30.) Cleveland Browns 0-2
QB DeShone Kizer had to leave the game with migraine after going 15-of-31 for 182 yards, 3 interceptions and a passer rating of 27.3. He is expected to play in week 3.
31. (31.) San Francisco 49ers 0-2
The 49ers have gone the first two weeks of the season without scoring a touchdown for the first time in franchise history.
32. (32.) New York Jets 0-2
QB Josh McCown had a good game, completing 16 of 24 passes for 166 yards and 2 touchdowns, but the Jets were no match for the Oakland Raiders.