Where do things stand after five weeks?
The NFL season is five weeks in, so the ranks are starting to form. Let’s take a look back at what each division is looking like so far and what is in store for them in the coming weeks.
The AFC East is a different landscape without Tom Brady. The Buffalo Bills have taken control of the division with a 4-0 record. Quarterback, Josh Allen, has popped off for Buffalo and helped them jump to one of the top teams in the AFC.
Despite having no Brady, the New England Patriots are holding strong at 2-2 with Cam Newton. The Miami Dolphins are keeping their first-round pick, Tua Tagovailoa, under Ryan Fitzpatrick to learn. Lastly, The New York Jets…the number one overall pick may be on the horizon.
The AFC North is a battleground. The Pittsburgh Steelers, Baltimore Ravens and Cleveland Browns are 4-0, 4-1 and 4-1 respectively. The Steelers have Ben Roethlisberger back from injury slinging the rock to rookie WR, Chase Claypool.
Meanwhile, the Browns seem to finally have themselves in order with new coach Kevin Stefanski. The Ravens are as good as they were last year but still can’t get past the Kansas City Chiefs (the one team they’ve lost to). The last team in the division, the Cincinnati Bengals are making waves as well having some moderate success with rookie quarterback Joe Burrow.
The Tennesse Titans were the first team to be struck with a COVID outbreak and have had their schedule all messed up (but seem to be getting back to normal). They, along with the Indianapolis Colts, are the two strong teams with 3-0 and 3-2 record respectively. The Colts can thank their record to their stellar NFL leading defense.
The Jacksonville Jaguars and Houston Texans are both on the other end of the spectrum. Both are 1-4 and not much else should be expected from these two teams. The Texans have even gone far enough to fire coach and GM, Bill O’Brien.
The Chiefs don’t appear to be slowing after their Super Bowl win. They’ve easily gotten themselves ahead of AFC West but were served their first loss this weekend. The 3-2 Las Vegas Raiders (the team that just beat the Chiefs) are having some solid success in their new city.
The Denver Broncos and Los Angeles Chargers (both with only one win) are both falling behind despite having potential coming into the season. The Broncos have been hit with some major injuries all-around their roster. Justin Hebert looks like the real deal for the Chargers, but three straight close losses hurt any potential playoff run.
The NFC East is easily the worst division in the NFL. The division leaders, the Dallas Cowboys, are only 2-3. They just lost their starting QB, Dak Prescott, to a horrific ankle injury. Lucky for them, their backup, Andy Dalton, is a seasoned veteran who could keep the team afloat.
Behind them are the 1-3-1 Philadelphia Eagles, 1-4 Washington Football Team and 0-5 New York Giants. It’s just not going well in the NFC East, but Alex Smith is now starting for Washington after benching Dwayne Haskins. It was Smith’s first game back after a life-threatening leg injury nearly two years ago.
The NFC North is led by the 4-0 Green Bay Packers. The Packers are coming off a by week though and facing Tom Brady and Tampa Bay next week. Behind them is the surprise team, Chicago Bears. Chicago somehow found themselves at 4-1, with each win seeming more improbable than the last.
The Minnesota Vikings and Detroit Lions are both sitting low with only one win each. The Vikings almost beat the Seattle Seahawks this weekend but were bested due to some late Russell Wilson and DK Metcalf heroics.
It’s quite a toss-up in the NFC South. The New Orleans Saints, Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Carolina Panthers all share a 3-2 record. All three teams appear to be good, but also show off some major weak points.
The Atlanta Falcons are 0-5, and like the Texans, have now fired their head coach Dan Quinn and longtime GM Thomas Dimitroff. Of course, the other big story of the NFC South is Tom Brady in Tampa. The Bucs have been very streaky through the first five weeks. Time will tell if the GOAT and the rest of Tampa Bay’s roster can get in sync to make a deep playoff run.
Another tough division to be in is the NFC West. The division’s combined record is 14-6. Their worst team, the San Francisco 49ers, is only 2-3 (even after being devastated by injuries). The leaders of the division are the undefeated Seattle Seahawks. Russel Wilson has played lights out and leads the league with 19 touchdowns.
The Los Angeles Rams and Arizona Cardinals are 4-1 and 3-2 respectively. Both are good but will have a tough road to get through the Seahawks and into the playoffs. Otherwise, they may be battling each other for a wild card spot at the end of the season.