We have reached the half way mark in the 2015 NFL regular season. As with any year, there are some shocking surprises around the NFL. The Indianapolis Colts, Detroit Lions and San Francisco 49ers are all a complete mess. Peyton Manning has more interceptions than touchdowns but he’s lead his team to a perfect 7-0 record. The Carolina Panthers own a perfect record as well while their leading receiver is a tight end. Rookie RB Todd Gurley looks as if he might be able to put the Rams on his back while making a push for the playoffs. Let’s take a look to see how teams are stacking up after eight weeks of the season.
NFL Week Eight Power Rankings-
1- New England Patriots- At 38, QB Tom Brady is playing perhaps the best football of his career. If New England gets past the Broncos defense on November 29th in Denver, this team goes 16-0 barring injury.
2- Denver Broncos- The best current defense in the NFL, bar none. Too bad the Broncos could have pulled off a deal for LT Joe Thomas at the trade deadline, injuries at that position are going to be an issue down the stretch with an aging Peyton Manning under center.
3- Cincinnati Bengals- And to think back to all of those that snickered at me after drafting Andy Dalton on my season long fantasy teams.
4- Carolina Panthers- 11 straight regular season wins but at some point you have to think that the lack of depth at the receiving position will be exploited.
5- Green Bay Packers- Absolutely steamrolled in Denver this past week. What’s more disturbing, averaging just 19 points per game in the last four. Very important game this week against the Panthers, could decide overall seeding in the playoffs.
6- Arizona Cardinals- Some of you also snickered when I drafted QB Carson Palmer. RB Chris Johnson has resurrected his career in the desert, averaging 4.8 yards per carry.
7- Atlanta Falcons- RB Devonta Freeman has been a welcome surprise for the Falcons this season. A stumble this week against divisional opponent Tampa but a favorable schedule moving forward suggests 12-4 is a reasonable finish.
8- Minnesota Vikings- Quietly one of the best teams that is rarely talked about. However, they have a brutal six game stretch upcoming. If they can somehow go 4-2 in those games, this is one of the wildcard teams.
9- Oakland Raiders- Yes, the Raiders. The team is finally turning the corner in time for long suffering fans to watch them move to Los Angeles.
10- Pittsburgh Steelers- The loss of RB LeVeon Bell hurts for the remainder of the year but QB Ben Roethlisberger is finally back in the lineup.
11- St. Louis Rams- RB Todd Gurley might have saved Jeff Fisher’s career.
12- New York Jets- Quarterback injuries are going to be the demise of the Jets this season.
13- Philadelphia Eagles- Still waiting to see someone step up in the NFC East.
14- Seattle Seahawks- Free agency and player movement over the past two seasons has finally caught up to the Seahawks.
15- New Orleans Saints- If you started QB Drew Brees in your DFS leagues this past week, you cashed a winning ticket.
16- New York Giants- See the Philadelphia Eagles above.
17- Buffalo Bills- Can the return of QB Tyrod Taylor save the Bills season?
18- Miami Dolphins- Has the Dan Campbell boost faded? Seven of the remaining eight games on their schedule are winnable, let’s see if Campbell is ready for primetime.
19- Washington Redskins- See the New York Giants and Philadelphia Eagles listed above.
20- Indianapolis Colts- Has head coach Chuck Pagano listed his house or called the movers yet?
21- Tampa Bay Buccaneers- After a horrendous first game, rookie QB Jameis Winston has now gone three straight games without a turnover.
22- Dallas Cowboys- WR Dez Bryant returns, now if they can hold on three more weeks until Romo returns, they might, might be in the mix for a division title.
23- Jacksonville Jaguars- This team has some young stars on both sides of the ball, could make some noise in 2016 but it remains to be seen if Gus Bradley will be the one calling the shots after this year.
24- Kansas City Chiefs- A totally disappointing season for Andy Reid and crew.
25- Cleveland Browns- Another lost season and more Johnny Manziel drama.
26- Chicago Bears- RB Matt Forte out for at least two weeks.
27- Baltimore Ravens- And you thought the wide receiver situation in Carolina was bad?
28- San Francisco 49ers- It’s never a sold plan when you name Blaine Gabbert as your starting quarterback.
29- San Diego Chargers- I think some of the Chargers fans might come and help the team pack as they move to Los Angeles.
30- Houston Texans- I don’t see head coach Bill O’Brien holding on to his job after January 4th.
31- Tennessee Titans- Ken Whisenhunt out, Mike Mularkey in? Meh.
32- Detroit Lions- If the Lions finish the season with one of the top-3 picks in the 2016 NFL Draft, it might be time to blow things up. Draft a young quarterback, trade QB Matthew Stafford and veteran WR Calvin Johnson and clear off some cap space while rebuilding for the future with a new coaching staff.