NFL

2020 NFL Power Rankings: Week 3

More drama for the Philadelphia Eagles, injuries galore, and a wild finish between the Dallas Cowboys and Atlanta Falcons -- what will Week 3 have in store? Hopefully no more injuries...please.

As a reminder, numberFire's nERD rating is our efficiency metric based on in-game data and measures a team's performance relative to points above or below average. This view of team performance determines our rankings.

Risers and Fallers

The Eagles took on the Los Angeles Rams, and that did not go any better than their Week 1 effort against the Washington Football Team. They followed up that catastrophic performance (when they surrendered a 17-point lead and dropped 11 spots in our rankings) with an 18-point loss to the Rams. This sent them tumbling down another seven spots, and their nERD rating also decreased by 3.79 points, the largest decrease in Week 2. numberFire now projects a 6-10 record for the Eagles.

The struggles of Carson Wentz continued as he threw two more interceptions. After two weeks, Wentz has -25.35 Passing Net Expected Points (NEP), which is dead last in the league by an even larger gap than after Week 1.

Washington’s victory over the Eagles vaulted them up our rankings last week, and the Rams' drubbing of Philadelphia did the same. They climbed up eight spots to sit at number two overall, and their nERD increased by 3.16 points -- both tops in Week 2. Jared Goff, rather surprisingly, ranks fourth in Passing NEP per drop back after two weeks.

Here are our Week 3 NFL Power Rankings:

Teams Ranked 32nd to 23rd

Rank Team nERD Record Playoff Odds Rank Change Off. NEP Rank Def. NEP Rank
32 Miami Dolphins -6.63 0-2 3.20% -1 21 31
31 New York Jets -6.14 0-2 3.70% -3 31 21
30 Cincinnati Bengals -6.13 0-2 2.40% 2 26 17
29 Detroit Lions -5.85 0-2 9.20% -4 22 32
28 Carolina Panthers -5.7 0-2 4.20% 1 19 24
27 New York Giants -5.42 0-2 8.20% 3 29 14
26 Houston Texans -4.67 0-2 24.10% -4 28 30
25 Philadelphia Eagles -4.2 0-2 18.80% -7 32 28
24 Jacksonville Jaguars -4.17 1-1 14.70% 3 8 22
23 Cleveland Browns -3.6 1-1 17.80% 3 25 25


The New York Jets sit at 31st in our rankings after losing handily to the San Francisco 49ers (31-13). Oh, but Jets' fans shouldn't worry -- head coach Adam Gase is looking to put the Jets into hyperdrive. Heading into the Jets’ third game, their offense ranks 31st in schedule-adjusted offense by numberFire's metrics. Gase may need ludicrous speed to get this offense going.

The Cleveland Browns and Baker Mayfield were able to ease some tension with a solid offensive performance in the team’s win over the Cincinnati Bengals in what was a great Thursday night game. Both teams improved their standing in our rankings, moving up three and two places, respectively.

Teams Ranked 22nd to 13th

Rank Team nERD Record Playoff Odds Rank Change Off. NEP Rank Def. NEP Rank
22 Washington Football Team -2.81 1-1 22.00% 2 27 3
21 Denver Broncos -2.61 0-2 10.00% 0 30 11
20 Atlanta Falcons -2.02 0-2 24.60% 3 15 27
19 Minnesota Vikings -1 0-2 19.40% -5 11 26
18 Las Vegas Raiders -0.53 2-0 45.20% 1 5 29
17 Arizona Cardinals -0.36 2-0 46.20% 3 17 8
16 Chicago Bears 0.26 2-0 53.80% 0 16 10
15 Los Angeles Chargers 0.54 1-1 46.10% 0 23 6
14 Dallas Cowboys 1.08 1-1 68.20% -2 20 20
13 Indianapolis Colts 1.32 1-1 47.50% 4 18 9


The Falcons, who sit in the 20th spot this week, managed to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory in one of the most peculiar endings you’ll see. While the Falcons avoided the Cowboys' onside kick that ultimately led to their demise, neither team’s quarterbacks avoided racking up the passing stats with Matt Ryan finishing fifth in Passing NEP (18.15) in Week 2 and Dak Prescott finishing seventh (16.68).

My Green Bay buddies have given now-Dallas head coach Mike McCarthy a lot of flack over the years -- maybe it was deserved, maybe not. But he made the right call going to the two-point conversion when a touchdown brought his team to within nine in the 4th quarter. I really don’t know how his decision is still debatable.

Despite the victory, Dallas dropped two spots to 14th. And despite the loss, Atlanta rose three to 20th in arguably the most fun game of the week.

Teams Ranked 12th to 1st

Rank Team nERD Record Playoff Odds Rank Change Off. NEP Rank Def. NEP Rank
12 Tampa Bay Buccaneers 2.08 1-1 55.00% 1 24 5
11 Seattle Seahawks 2.34 2-0 82.20% -4 3 19
10 New Orleans Saints 2.62 1-1 73.50% -6 12 16
9 Tennessee Titans 2.78 2-0 72.00% -1 9 15
8 Buffalo Bills 3.52 2-0 70.20% 1 7 12
7 Pittsburgh Steelers 4.33 2-0 81.20% -1 14 2
6 New England Patriots 4.67 1-1 70.30% -3 6 13
5 Green Bay Packers 4.93 2-0 85.50% 6 1 23
4 Kansas City Chiefs 4.97 2-0 93.80% -2 10 18
3 San Francisco 49ers 5.29 1-1 61.00% 2 13 7
2 Los Angeles Rams 5.52 2-0 68.40% 8 2 4
1 Baltimore Ravens 10.86 2-0 97.80% 0 4 1


The Kansas City Chiefs survived an unexpected challenge from the Los Angeles Chargers, a close call dropped that cost them a two-spot drop in our rankings (to fourth), and a 1.12-point drop in nERD rating.

The Packers, New England Patriots, and Pittsburgh Steelers follow closely behind the Chiefs. Cam Newton is second in Rushing NEP among quarterbacks (15.25), second only to Kyler Murray (17.19), and he leads quarterbacks in Rushing Successes with 18.

I don’t mention kickers too often, but Harrison Butker hit two 58-yard field goals, the second of which was the game winner in overtime. What is extra impressive is that he hit that winner essentially three times: Butker first connected from 53 yards (nullified by false start), then was good from 58 yards (timeout called right before the kick), and finally hit one that counted to win the game.

Injuries took no mercy on teams across the league with the 49ers possibly getting the worst of it. They lost Nick Bosa and Solomon Thomas for the year, along with injuries to Jimmy Garoppolo, Raheem Mostert, and Tevin Coleman. Oh yeah, and George Kittle is also still recovering from his knee injury, though he is expected to play this week. The 49ers are ranked third in our rankings this week, but we'll see if they can hold on to a top-three spot with all of these recent injuries.

Another week, another dominating performance by the Baltimore Ravens, who still hold our top ranking. Their defense has been just as impressive as their offense. The Ravens have the league’s top ranked defense in terms of Adjusted Defensive NEP per play.

It’s going to be a heck of a Monday night when the Chiefs and Ravens' matchup in Baltimore. Currently, the Ravens are a three-point favorite on FanDuel Sportsbook.