NFL Week 6 Power Rankings

October 20, 2020

Week 6 of the NFL season is in the books. For NFL bettors, that means it is time to recalibrate their power ratings. In this edition of our NFL power ratings, we see several teams climb the charts based on inspired performances in Week 6. Meanwhile, others drop based on some disappointing results. From the worst team in the league to the best, these rankings can help shape yours so you can make better NFL betting picks.

32. New York Jets (Last Week: 32)

The New York Jets were the only team to be shut out in Week 6 in the NFL. Their 24-0 loss to the Miami Dolphins dropped their scoring average below 13 points per game this season. While they are using their backup quarterback, that quarterback is Joe Flacco. Given that Flacco has won a Super Bowl before, that is hardly an excuse for what appears to be organizational ineptitude from the top down.

31. Jacksonville Jaguars (Last Week: 29)

Jacksonville did a lot to improve its draft stock this week, but that is the only positive to be found from them lately. The Jags lost 34-16 to the hapless Detroit Lions at home this past week. They allowed over 100 yards and two touchdowns to rookie running back DeAndre Swift. Jacksonville, since its surprising Week 1 win over the Colts, has proven itself to have the worst defense in the league in 2020.

30. New York Giants (Last Week: 31)

The New York Giants have entered the win column, moving up a spot in our rankings. The Giants defeated the Washington Football Team in a dramatic 20-19 game. But when quarterback Daniel Jones is the team’s leading rusher with 74 yards, it is hard to celebrate the Giants’ victory too passionately. This team still has some major warts.

29. Washington Football Team (Last Week: 27)

Washington lost to the Giants this past week, but are still a spot ahead of them in these rankings. Why, you ask? The reason is that the Washington Football Team still have individual talent at some spots on the field that is better than that of the Giants. The Washington pass rush can keep them in more games than can any unit on the Giants’ roster, which is important even if Washington isn’t very good right now as a whole.

28. Detroit Lions (Last Week: 28)

It may have come against the lowly Jacksonville Jaguars, but the Detroit Lions got a drama-free victory in Week 6. The Lions’ offense was clicking, while the defense did enough to limit Gardner Minshew and avoid getting sucked into a late-game comeback situation. The Lions still have a long way to go, but they have to be impressed with what they got from D’Andre Swift this weekend.

27. Atlanta Falcons (Last Week: 30)

It took the firing of head coach Dan Quinn, but the Falcons are now in the win column as well in 2020. Atlanta put up 40 points on the Vikings defense in Minnesota in Week 6. Matt Ryan threw for 371 yards, which was tied for the best mark in the league in Week 6. And the Falcons didn’t relinquish their double-digit lead in the fourth quarter this time around. The question is whether or not Atlanta can keep the post-Quinn momentum rolling.

26. Cincinnati Bengals (Last Week: 24)

Cincinnati got out to a 21-0 lead against the Indianapolis Colts on the road this week. Joe Burrow had 150 passing yards after the first quarter. But Burrow failed to build on that start over the final three quarters. The Bengals struggled to move the ball in the second half, and the Colts were able to come back and win comfortably. Burrow showed flashes in this game, but the Bengals need him to be more consistent over four quarters.

25. Dallas Cowboys (Last Week: 22)

This might just be who the Dallas Cowboys are this season. Without Dak Prescott, the Cowboys were blown out by a 38-10 margin by the Arizona Cardinals. Arizona was able to take advantage of the Cowboys’ poor defense. And without Prescott to help the offense keep up with their bad defense, Dallas never stood a chance in this game. To tell you how bad Dallas is without Dak, they are roughly a pick ‘em against Washington in NFL betting markets for Week 7.

24. Minnesota Vikings (Last Week: 20)

Minnesota was not able to build on the relative success that they had over the last couple of weeks. They were a trendy pick as a four-point favorite against the Atlanta Falcons. But Minnesota was run off of their home field by Matt Ryan and company in that game. Ineptitude in short yardage situations allowed the Falcons to get stops early in the game, and the Vikings were never able to recover.

23. Philadelphia Eagles (Last Week: 26)

It is hard to judge the Eagles based on their Week 6 performance against the Baltimore Ravens. On one hand, they fell way behind in the game early. But they came back and were a two-point conversion away from tying the game. Given the way their season had been going, give the Eagles credit for showing some heart when they looked down and out against one of the best teams in the NFL.

22. Denver Broncos (Last Week: 25)

The most surprising win in Week 6 came from the Denver Broncos. A big underdog on the road against the New England Patriots, Denver put on a defensive clinic against Cam Newton and the Pats. Denver was only able to muster six field goals on offense, but the Broncos won 18-12. Now the question is whether or not the Broncos can bring the same defensive intensity at home against the Chiefs in Week 7.

21. Los Angeles Chargers (Last Week: 18)

The LA Chargers had the week off in Week 6. And, unfortunately for the Chargers, Week 7 is unlikely to tell us much about the quality of their team. The Chargers play the Jacksonville Jaguars in Week 7. On the bright side, that game will be a great chance for Justin Herbert to show out against one of the worst defenses in the NFL this season. Off of a bye, the Bolts are expected to cruise in that game. 

20. Carolina Panthers (Last Week: 14)

Carolina was one of the most disappointing teams in the NFL in Week 6. They could not get their offense going against the Chicago Bears, losing a 23-16 game at home. Teddy Bridgewater led the game in passing yards with just 216 yards, which isn’t enough given the amount of trust that was put in him by this Panthers organization.

19. Las Vegas Raiders (Last Week: 16)

The Raiders had a bye week in Week 6, allowing them to prepare for a marquee Week 7 matchup. Las Vegas will host Tom Brady and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on Sunday Night Football this coming week. And given the way the Raiders beat the New Orleans Saints at home in primetime earlier this season, the Raiders could make another statement there.

18. Houston Texans (Last Week: 23)

Houston lost in overtime to the Tennessee Titans in Week 6. It was a high scoring game, which the Texans lost 42-36. But this is the second straight week that the Texans have played well on the offensive side of the ball. And there is no shame in giving up a lot of points to a Titans team that has scored in large quantities against everyone so far this season. Things are trending upward in Houston.

17. New Orleans Saints (Last Week: 15)

New Orleans had a Week 6 bye, so they hold relatively steady in the power rankings. Next week, they face the Carolina Panthers at home in a key NFC South matchup. With the Buccaneers continuing to win games, New Orleans can’t afford to drop home games like this next one and fall too far behind in the standings.

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16. Miami Dolphins (Last Week: 17)

The Miami Dolphins blew out the New York Jets in Week 6. That is not a grand accomplishment by any means. But it does leave the team in a good place heading into its bye week. When the Dolphins return from their bye, they will do so with Tua Tagovailoa as their starting quarterback. His first test will come in Week 8 against the Los Angeles Rams.

15. Chicago Bears (Last Week: 19)

Chicago hasn’t done anything with style this season, but they are now a 5-1 football team. The Bears stifled the Panthers offense in a 23-16 win in Week 6. With back to back wins over quality NFC South opponents, the Bears are starting to look like a legitimately good football team in spite of their luck early in the season. They will still need better production out of the quarterback position to be viable contenders, though.

14. Indianapolis Colts (Last Week: 13)

The Colts drop one spot this week despite winning over the Cincinnati Bengals. Indy fell behind by 21 points to start that game, which is something that you can’t afford to do against a team as bad as the Bengals. Philip Rivers had an early turnover in this game that set up Cincinnati’s first touchdown. If he can’t fix his turnover problems, the Colts will never break into the upper echelon in the league.

13. Cleveland Browns (Last Week: 12)

Cleveland was blown out 38-7 by the Pittsburgh Steelers in Week 6. But some perspective is required here. While this loss was bad, it came to an undefeated Steelers team that has historically dominated the Browns in the past as well. This loss isn’t too indicative of the Browns’ season as a whole, as Cleveland is still a rock solid 4-2 on the year.

12. Los Angeles Rams (Last Week: 9)

The concern for the Rams heading into Week 6 was whether or not they could win against a team outside of the NFC East. For this week, at least, the answer was no. They were beaten 24-16 by the San Francisco 49ers on Sunday Night Football. Jared Goff and the Rams’ offense looked out of sync at times, as the Niners were able to disrupt their rhythm and prompt further questions about the Rams.

11. San Francisco 49ers (Last Week: 21)

The aforementioned Niners move up a whopping 10 spots this week, thanks to their resurgence this past Sunday. The return of Jimmy Garoppolo to relative health was important for them. His threat in the passing game allowed the Niners to use misdirection and force the Rams to respect skill position players more than they would with one of their backup quarterbacks in the game.

10. Buffalo Bills (Last Week: 8)

Buffalo has had a rough couple of weeks against elite competition. After losing to the Titans in Week 5, they were shut down at home by the Kansas City Chiefs in Week 6. Josh Allen has looked bad at times in each of those games, though the weather in Buffalo did not help against Kansas City. Allen needs to be more consistent against high-quality opponents, or there will always be a ceiling for this Bills team.

9. Green Bay Packers (Last Week: 6)

The Green Bay Packers went up 10-0 against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers this week. But that was as good as things got for them, as the Packers allowed the next 38 points in a blowout loss. Aaron Rodgers was turnover prone in the game for the first time all season. This is likely more of an exception than the rule for the Packers, but it was a disappointing game from them nonetheless.

8. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (Last Week: 11)

On the flip side, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers were dominant in the win against the Packers. The most impressive thing about them in that game was their resilience. Going down by 10 points to an Aaron Rodgers-led team can be deflating. But the Bucs took the opening punch from Green Bay and did an incredible job the rest of the way to assert themselves as legitimate NFC contenders.

7. Arizona Cardinals (Last Week: 10)

What is scary about the Arizona Cardinals is how dangerous they are even when the passing game isn’t at its best. Kyler Murray struggled to connect with his receivers all night in the team’s 38-10 blowout win over the Dallas Cowboys. But Murray’s mobility and the effectiveness of Kenyan Drake in the running game allow this offense to keep moving, even when it’s not at its best.

6. New England Patriots (Last Week: 3)

New England had the most disappointing loss of the week with their 18-12 loss to the Broncos. But it is hard to dock them too aggressively for that loss given what the Patriots dealt with recently. Their team facility was shut down due to some positive COVID-19 tests. Without adequate practice time, they struggled in their first game back post-shutdown. If they continue to struggle, there will be cause for concern.

5. Pittsburgh Steelers (Last Week: 7)

Ben Roethlisberger is making a great case for comeback player of the year this season. He led the Steelers to their fifth win in five games with a blowout victory over the Cleveland Browns. Pittsburgh’s offense is starting to click, with weapons emerging alongside Juju Smith-Schuster in the receiving corps. A big test awaits the Steelers in Week 7, as they take on the Tennessee Titans.

4. Tennessee Titans (Last Week: 5)

Tennessee stayed undefeated with a thrilling overtime victory over the Houston Texans in Week 6. But that win came at a price. Starting left tackle Taylor Lewan was lost for the season with a knee injury. Now the Titans are tasked with facing a Steelers team that leads the NFL in sacks this season, without their best offensive lineman to protect Ryan Tannehill. This is a huge test for a team that has put up points in bunches all season.

3. Seattle Seahawks (Last Week: 4)

Seattle came off of a bye in Week 6, after getting by the Minnesota Vikings the week before. Russell Wilson’s status as the frontrunner for the league’s MVP award has not changed at all. And the Seattle offense is still the most dangerous in the league so far. The question for Seattle is whether their defense can raise its collective game post-bye week.

2. Baltimore Ravens (Last Week: 1)

Baltimore took care of business against the Philadelphia Eagles in Week 6. But there have to be concerns with the way the Ravens let the Eagles back into that game in the second half. Baltimore’s defense was carved up by Carson Wentz and company in the fourth quarter, with a stop on a two-point conversion attempt being the only thing separating the teams when all was said and done.

1. Kansas City Chiefs (Last Week: 2)

To go to Buffalo and gut out a win over the Bills in terrible weather is no small task. But the Kansas City Chiefs did just that, and they did it relatively comfortably as well. The Chiefs defense made Josh Allen look incompetent at times, while their offense was able to make just enough plays to overcome the weather and get out of Orchard Park with a win. The Chiefs now head to Denver for an AFC West showdown at Mile High.

NFL Betting FAQ

Who is going to win the Super Bowl this year?

Right now, there are several favorites to win the Super Bowl. The Kansas City Chiefs are among them. But teams like the Baltimore Ravens, Seattle Seahawks, Tennessee Titans and Pittsburgh Steelers are all in the mix as well. And, of course, another team can get hot and come out of nowhere to win the title as well.

Why did the San Francisco 49ers move so much in the rankings?

The Niners had one of the most impressive weeks in the NFL in Week 6. They seemed to have recovered nicely from the injuries that were plaguing them in the weeks prior. They also scored a dominant home win over a previously top-10 team in the Rams. Their performance in Week 6 did a lot to silence the doubt surrounding their ability to contend in the NFC again this year.

Which division is the best division in football?

Right now, the answer would have to be the NFC West. Every team in the NFC West has looked like a playoff contender for at least a part of the season so far. It is highly unlikely that four teams from one division make the playoffs, given that there are only three wild card slots per conference. But the NFC West looks equipped to give it a try.

Jay Sanin
Jay Sanin is a sports writer and broadcaster from Albany, NY. He has covered sports betting and the gambling industry since 2013.