01. Dallas Cowboys (8-1): Eight wins in a row and the two best rookies in the NFL. These are good times in Big D.
02. Seattle Seahawks (6-2-1): If there is one team built to stop the Cowboys from their first Super Bowl appearance in 21 years, it’s these guys.
03. New England Patriots (7-2): Narrow loss at home to Seattle ironically reinforces their position as the class of the AFC.
04. Kansas City Chiefs (7-2): The hottest team in the AFC just finds ways to win. Alex Smith needs to get better, though.
05. Oakland Raiders (7-2): Just to annoy Donald Trump, Derek Carr makes his Monday Night Football debut in Mexico City.
06. Denver Broncos (7-3): You know you’re in a good division when you’re 7-3 and only the third-best team in your division.
07. Atlanta Falcons (5-4): Need to spend the bye week working on a defense that allows over 68 percent of all passes to be completed. They can’t win unless Matt Ryan plays out of his mind. Often he does, but the Falcons are asking too much of him.
08. Washington Redskins (5-3-1): Frequently look very average, but they’re 4-0 in games when their opponent has a winning record. They’ll go as far as Kirk Cousins can take them.
09. New York Giants (6-3): Eli’s not having a good year, but they’ve won 4 straight and should make it 6 with wins over the Browns and Bears the next two weeks. If they can start running the ball the way they did against Cincy, they might actually earn that playoff spot. Must avoid the Nov-Dec swoons that became common-place under Tom Coughlin.
10. Philadelphia Eagles (5-4): Carson Wentz is a game manager right now, but that makes sense if Philly’s defense is going to play as well as they are.
11. Miami Dolphins (5-4): Winners of four straight thanks to Jay Ajayi’s running and Ryan Tannehill’s giving him the ball and otherwise not screwing up. Should make it 5 straight wins with a win in LA in Jared Goff’s pro debut.
12. Detroit Lions (5-4): Matt Stafford is playing great ball. Will it be enough to take advantage of Green Bay’s problems and vault the Lions to a division championship?
13. Arizona Cardinals (4-4-1): Struggled to beat the 49ers, which is not a good sign. What’s wrong with these guys?
14. Buffalo Bills (4-5): Scored 75 points in their last three games, all losses. Defense needs to step up against a reeling and inferior Bengals team. These Bills have the talent to win 10 games. Rex Ryan’s job probably depends on it.
15. Pittsburgh Steelers (4-5): Soul-crushing loss to Dallas caps a miserable 4-game losing streak, but hope still lives: they play the Browns on Sunday.
16. Baltimore Ravens (5-4): Atop the lousy AFC North thanks to Pittsburgh’s 4-game losing streak and a 3-0 division record.
17. Minnesota Vikings (5-4): Offensive line is a complete catastrophe and it is taking down the rest of the team.
18. Green Bay Packers (4-5): Thrashed by the Colts and Titans in consecutive weeks. What the hell??
19. Houston Texans (6-3): Their record means nothing to me. They’re lucky to play in the NFL’s worst division, but their QB is a (predictable) disaster and they will lose the next time they play a decent team. Oh, look — they’re in Oakland this week. That should be fun.
20. Tennessee Titans (5-5): One of the most inconsistent teams in the league. You never know who will show up, but Marcus Mariota has come a long way since September.
21. New Orleans Saints (4-5): Still capable of beating anyone with that offense.
22. San Diego Chargers (4-6): Disastrous 4-INT game for Rivers, but he’s a stand-up guy and I’ll bet he bounces back big-time on Sunday.
23. Cincinnati Bengals (3-5-1): Can’t seem to win a game in the final minutes, even when they deserve to.
24. Carolina Panthers (3-6): How did they lose that game?!?!
25. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (4-5): What do you know — their defense actually showed up to play for once! Of course, they were playing the Bears, so…
26. Indianapolis Colts (4-5): Upcoming game against division rival Tennessee is their last chance to revive their season.
27. Los Angeles Rams (4-5): Here comes Jared Goff!
28. New York Jets (3-7): The Bryce Petty era started well, eh?
29. Chicago Bears (2-7): Jay Cutler had a crappy game and his team lost. Stop me if you’ve heard this one before.
30. Jacksonville Jaguars: Blake Bortles looks like a bad rookie QB and that means some people are going to get fired.
31. San Francisco 49ers: Upcoming game against the Patriots has the Niners as 78-point underdogs. Still, very few takers.
32. Cleveland Browns (0-10): Previously bad-but-scrappy team is now just bad.