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Saturday, July 20, 2024
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Week 1 NFC Power Rankings

Week 1 is in the books and the NFL had a few surprises, but for the most part, the top teams in the NFC did what they were supposed to do. Some looked better than others and some looked downright awful.

There are still 17 weeks left in the regular season, but Week 1 left us with some impressions on how good teams are going to be.

Before we move on to Week 2, here are the NFC power rankings based on what we have seen through one week. These rankings are based on the results on the field through Week 1.

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1. Dallas Cowboys

If this Cowboys team shows up all season then they could finally end their Super Bowl drought. Nobody looked as dominant as the Cowboys did in Week 1 as the defense scored twice and they whipped the Giants 40-0 at MetLife Stadium. The Cowboys gave up just 171 yards on the game and 48 of that was on the first drive. The Cowboys looked great and will now head home to take on the Jets in week 2.

2. San Francisco 49ers

The 49ers were almost as dominant as the Cowboys as they also went on the road to get an easy victory. They had little trouble with the Steelers in Pittsburgh winning 30-7. Brandon Aiyuk scored twice, Christian McCaffrey had an impressive 65-yard touchdown run and the defense looked great as always. This team is going to be tough to beat. Next week they stay on the road to take on the Rams.

3. Detroit Lions

They might not have been the most dominant team in Week 1, but the Lions had arguably the most impressive win. The expectations have been high for the team coming into the season, but could they actually produce? For one night they proved that they could as they went into Arrowhead and beat the defending Super Bowl champion Chiefs 21-20. The Lions are a threat in the NFC.

4. Philadelphia Eagles

The defending NFC champs didn’t do anything wrong on Sunday to drop to four, but the three teams ahead of them just looked more impressive in their first game. The Eagles did what they needed to do in going to New England and beating the Patriots 25-20. It was a little closer than they liked, but they still got a big road victory.

5. Los Angeles Rams

The Rams were one of the few surprises in Week 1. They were bad last year and they were playing without star wide receiver Cooper Kupp. It didn’t seem to matter as Stafford threw for 334 yards and they routed the Seahawks 30-13.

6. Green Bay Packers

No Aaron Rodgers, no problem for the Packers. Green Bay was supposed to take a step back without Rodgers, but for one week they look like they could still be a pretty good team. They broke open a close game at halftime and scored 28 second-half points to get a 38-20 win over the rival Bears. Jordan Love looked good in his season debut going for 245 yards and three touchdowns.

7. New Orleans Saints

The Saints didn’t look explosive, but they scored just enough to beat the visiting Titans 16-15. Derek Carr threw for 305 yards and a touchdown in his debut in New Orleans. Chris Olave was his favorite target as he hauled in eight receptions for 112 yards.

8. Tampa Bay Buccaneers

The Buccaneers were another team that many thought would take a step back after the retirement of Tom Brady. For a week they proved those people wrong as Baker Mayfield and the offense did just enough to beat the Vikings on the road 20-17. Mayfield connected with Mike Evans and Trey Palmer for touchdowns and the Bucs earned an impressive win.

9. Atlanta Falcons

The running backs ruled the day for the Falcons in their season-opening win. First-round pick Bijan Robinson rushed for 56 yards on 10 carries and then caught another six passes, one of which went for a touchdown. His backup Tyler Allgeier was also good as he went for 75 yards and two touchdowns to help pace the Falcons in their 24-10 win over the Panthers.

10. Washington Commanders

The last of the winning teams in the NFC in Week 1 and the one that looked the least impressive. The Commanders were taking on a bad Cardinals team, but found themselves down 16-10 after three quarters. Sam Howell, though, led the Commanders to 10 fourth-quarter points to get the comeback win. The goal is to win games in the NFL and that is what they did but it wasn’t impressive.

11. Minnesota Vikings

There were questions coming into the season for the Vikings after they traded away running back Dalvin Cook, but the defense was still supposed to be good. Minnesota didn’t look horrible as Kirk Cousins threw for 344 yards and two touchdowns, but they still couldn’t get the win and suffered a tough home loss. It doesn’t get any easier for the Vikings next week as they must travel to Philadelphia to take on the Eagles.

12. Chicago Bears

Justin Fields showed flashes again on Sunday, but he was also bad at times throwing an interception and he also lost a fumble in their loss to the Packers. The offense was supposed to be better coming into the season, but it was more of the same. The defense also couldn’t off the field on third downs and and it doomed them. A trip to Tampa Bay is next for the Bears.

13. Seattle Seahawks

Geno Smith and the Seahawks were one of the feel-good stories in the NFL last year, but that came to a crashing halt for at least a week on Sunday. Smith threw for just 112 yards in the loss and Kenneth Walker III was shut down. The Seahawks actually led 13-7 at halftime, but they gave up 23 unanswered points in the second half. They now must travel to Detroit to take on the confident Lions.

14. Carolina Panthers

It was not a good start for the Panthers and top draft pick Bryce Young. Young struggled in his debut as he threw for just 146 yards and tossed two interceptions. Despite that, they were still tied heading into the fourth quarter, but the Falcons scored 14 in the final frame to come away with the win. The Panthers return home next Sunday to take on the Saints.

15. Arizona Cardinals

The Cardinals are one of the worst teams in the league on paper, but Sunday they nearly knocked off the Commanders. Without starting quarterback Kyler Murray, the Cardinals led Washington heading into the fourth quarter. They couldn’t hold the lead, though, and with it threw away a chance to shock the Commanders. They will play their first home game on Sunday against the next team on the list.

16. New York Giants

Nobody looked as bad as the Giants did in Week 1. They were absolutely dominated in a 40-0 loss to the rival Cowboys. Daniel Jones looked good on the first drive, but the Cowboys blocked the field goal attempt and ran it back for a touchdown. Things only got worse as Jones went just 15-28 for 104 yards and two interceptions. The Giants were a playoff team last year, but on Sunday they looked like the worst team in the NFC.

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