1. Cincinnati Bengals (3-0)
The Bengals—averaging 26.7 points per game—have yielded just 33 points in three contests this season.
2. Arizona Cardinals (3-0)
The Cardinals remain undefeated, despite Carson Palmer’s absence from the starting lineup the past two games. Backup Drew Stanton has done a commendable job in two spot starts (73.5 QBR, 2 TD, 0 interceptions), while the defense has given up just 45 points in the young season.
3. Philadelphia Eagles (3-0)
The Eagles are living on the edge this season, recording back-to-back three-point victories after overcoming a 17-point deficit to win their opener…Nick Foles leads the NFL in passing yards with 978.
4. San Diego Chargers (2-1)
Philip Rivers is the early favorite for MVP as the Chargers are rolling. Injuries at running back (Ryan Matthews out 3-5 weeks, Danny Woodhead out for season) are the lone concern.
5. Seattle Seahawks (2-1)
Russell Wilson posts a 7-0 career record against the modern-day Mount Rushmore QB's (Manning, Brady, Rodgers, and Brees).
6. Denver Broncos (2-1)
An overtime loss at Seattle is nothing to be too disappointed about, though the Broncos wanted some sort of semblance of revenge against the Seahawks after last year’s debacle in the Super Bowl.
7. Atlanta Falcons (2-1)
The Falcons’ offense has found their groove under the tutelage of Matt Ryan, who ranks second in the NFL with an 85.5 QBR.
8. New England Patriots (2-1)
The Patriots’ offensive line has underperformed and Tom Brady is struggling to find his rhythm with any of his targets outside of "Every-Play Edelman" and Gronkowski inside the red-zone. Brady has completed 84.1 percent of his passes to Edelman, but posts a 54.6 passing percentage when firing to other WRs/TEs. It’s still early, but the Pats have yet to live up to their Super Bowl contender status.
9. Detroit Lions (2-1)
The Lions rank No. 1 in total defense.
10. Buffalo Bills (2-1)
The Bills lost a tough home contest to the surging Chargers, but a road victory against the Texans would inch Buffalo closer to cementing its status as a true contender.
11. Chicago Bears (2-1)
The Bears’ defense showed major strides in their victory over the Jets, forcing three sacks and two-interceptions (one pick-six). Meanwhile, Jay Cutler and Martellus Bennett have already connected for four TDs (two on Monday night) this year.
12. Indianapolis Colts (1-2)
Andrew Luck had a career-day against Jacksonville, passing for 370 yards and four TDs in the Colts’ 44-17 thrashing of the Jaguars.
13. Baltimore Ravens (2-1)
The Ravens stole a win from the Browns at the DawgPound thanks to Joe Flacco’s clutch 37-yard pass connection to Steve Smith, setting up the reliable Justin Tucker for a game-winning 32-yard field goal as time expired. This week, Smith faces his former team, hoping to make them pay for releasing him this summer.
14. Pittsburgh Steelers (2-1)
The Steelers ground-and-pound offense leads the league in rushing yards.
15. San Francisco 49ers (1-2)
The 49ers look lost on offense and now face a “put up or shut up” contest versus the undefeated Eagles. A loss could be devastating to the 49ers—who reportedly are losing faith in Jim Harbaugh—amid the head coach’s quarrels with owner Jed York and general manager Trent Baalke.
16. Carolina Panthers (2-1)
Carolina surrendered 264 yards on the ground versus the Steelers—the most rushing yards the Panthers have allowed since 2008.
17. New Orleans Saints (1-2)
Brees was fired up after the Vikings’ Captain Munnerlyn decked him on an unnecessary roughness penalty. Brees torched Minnesota for 293 yards and two touchdowns with no interceptions. Can Brees carry this ferocity and help build momentum for New Orleans moving forward?
18. Dallas Cowboys (2-1)
The Cowboys matched their biggest comeback in franchise history behind two touchdown passes from Tony Romo and 100 yards on the ground with one score from the NFL’s leader in rushing yards, DeMarco Murray.
19. Green Bay Packers (1-2)
The Packers have scored a combined 23 points in their two losses in 2014.
20. Houston Texans (2-1)
Ryan Fitzpatrick will determine the Texans’ fate in 2014. In the two wins to start the season, he threw three TDs without an interception. In Sunday’s loss, he threw one TD (and ran for another) with three costly interceptions.
21. New York Jets (1-2)
The Jets are going nowhere this season if Geno Smith continues his porous QB play. He threw a pick-six less than a minute into the game and tossed away another in the Jets’ loss on “Monday Night Football.” Smith’s Total QBR for the game was 20.5, dropping his season rating to 33.2.
22. Cleveland Browns (1-2)
The Browns’ Brian Hoyer-led offense has far exceeded expectations, but what is wrong their supposed revamped defense? Cleveland has relinquished a ghastly 153.7 yards per game on the ground…All three of Cleveland's contests have been decided by a game-winning field goal (Loss at Steelers, Win vs. Saints, Loss vs. Ravens).
23. Washington Redskins (1-2)
Kirk Cousins displayed poise in the Redskins’ near-upset over the undefeated Eagles on Sunday. A victory over the Giants on “Thursday Night Football” could go a long way towards instilling confidence in the developing QB.
24. Tennessee Titans (1-2)
A road win against Kansas City in Week 1 had many Titans fans excited about this season. Two blowout losses later and it’s hard not to believe Tennessee is headed towards its fourth consecutive losing season.
25. Kansas City Chiefs (1-2)
Sans star running back Jamaal Charles, the visiting Chiefs pounded the Dolphins as K.C. saved their season.
26. Minnesota Vikings (1-2)
Matt Cassel’s foot injury has opened the door for incumbent rookie starter Teddy Bridgewater.
27. New York Giants (1-2)
Eli Manning finally played an interception-free game and the Giants’ defense picked off Ryan Fitzpatrick three times in New York’s first win of 2014.
28. Miami Dolphins (1-2)
Head coach Joe Philbin neglected to confirm that Ryan Tannehill—who posts a subpar 56.5-percent completion rate and a passer rating of 74.1—will be their starter in their Week 4 tilt in London against the Raiders.
29. St. Louis Rams (1-2)
Jared Cook made a fool of himself by dropping a TD pass and then shoving QB Austin Davis on the sidelines. Blowing a 21-0 lead versus the visiting Cowboys capped off a rough day for the Rams.
30. Oakland Raiders (0-3)
The Raiders’ defeat Sunday at New England was their 15th straight loss in the Eastern Time zone.
31. Jacksonville Jaguars (0-3)
Blake Bortles time in Jacksonville, though the major concern for the Jags has to be how their offensive line has been manhandled all season long.
32. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (0-3)
The Bucs lost to a backup QB at home in Week 1. They then lost to third-string QB at home in Week 2. And in their prime-time matchup against the Falcons on “Thursday Night Football,” the Bucs were pulverized 56-14.