2018 NFL Power Rankings: Week 8
It took a little while longer than you might have expected, but our nERD power ratings are ready to fully buy-in on the Kansas City Chiefs.
Patrick Mahomes' squad did not crank the top 10 until after Week 5 and came into last week's showdown against Cincinnati Bengals ranked 10th by our models. After another blowout win, the Chiefs have jumped all the way up to third in the rankings, which look at how many points above average or below average a given team is.
The system's reservations centered around a defense that looks like the league's worst. That unit still looks that way and is just 30th in opponent-adjusted Net Expected Points (NEP), but the offense has continued to be so dominant, it just has not mattered.
The Chiefs' offense leads the league in NEP and is 2.2 standard deviations above the mean, while the defense is about 1.4 standard deviations below the mean. Only two teams rank better in net NEP, and those happen to be the two teams ahead of the Chiefs in our rankings.
The top-ranked Rams have an offense that has performed just slightly worse than Kansas City's, but they also boast an above-average defense. Baltimore is constructed in the opposite fashion, with the league's second-best defense and an offense that has been above-average but not great.
Here is how the rest of the league breaks down.