After calling it a career after 45 years of sports writing — including 36 Super Bowls covered — former Philadelphia Inquirer columnist Paul Domowitch is bringing his weekly power rankings to the 33rd Team. Here he gives us the skinny on the good news and bad news that each NFL team is dealing with.
1) Cardinals (9-2) Previous: 3
Last week: W23-13@SEA
This week: Bye
Good news: The Cardinals, who will be getting Kyler Murray back after the bye, won two of the three games he missed.
Bad news: Cardinals have averaged just 3.0 yards per carry in the two games since Chase Edmonds’ ankle injury. They were averaging 4.2 before he got hurt.
2) Bucs (7-3) Previous: 6
Last week: W30-10NYG
This week: at 6-5 Colts
Good news: The Defense played one of its most complete front-to-back games of the season against Giants.
Bad news: Jonathan Taylor is up next. Buckle your chin straps.
3) Packers (8-3) Previous: 2
Last week: L31-34@MIN
This week: v. 7-3 Rams
Good news: Aaron Rodgers was unstoppable, throwing for 385 yards and four TDs.
Bad news: All three of the Packers’ losses have come on the road.
4) Titans (8-3) Previous: 1
Last week: L13-22HOU
This week: at 7-4 Patriots
Good news: The defense held Houston to 190 total yards and didn’t give up a passing TD.
Bad news: Five turnovers? To Houston? WTF, guys?
5) Patriots (7-4) Previous: 7
Last week: W25-0@ATL
This week: v. 8-3 Titans
Good news: Five straight wins. Just 50 points given up by the defense in those five wins.
Bad news: The offense was just 1-for-3 in the red zone against the Falcons.
6) Chiefs (7-4) Previous: 8
Last week: W19-9DAL
This week: Bye
Good news: The Chiefs once again have a defense that their offense can be proud of. After a 3-4 start, they’ve won four in a row and have given up just 47 points in those four wins.
Bad news: Chiefs have the second most turnovers (22) and fourth worst turnover differential (minus-7) in the league.
7) Cowboys (7-3) Previous: 4
Last week: L9-19@KC
This week: v. 5-5 Raiders
Good news: They’re getting the slumping Raiders at home in a short-week game.
Bad news: Ezekiel Elliott has averaged just 3.5 yards per carry in the last four games.
8) Rams (7-3) Previous: 9
Last week: Bye
This week: at 8-3 Packers
Good news: The bye week gave Sean McVay an extra week to fix whatever the hell is wrong with QB Matt Stafford, who has thrown 4 INTs in the last two games.
Bad news: Opposing QBs have completed 74.1% of their passes against the Rams in the last 3 games, and Aaron Rodgers is waiting on deck.
9) Bills (6-4) Previous: 5
Last week: L15-41IND
This week: at 5-5 Saints
Good news: Josh Allen and Stefon Diggs collaborated on their 12th and 13th touchdown passes Sunday.
Bad news: Even with a running QB, Bills have become too dependent on the pass. They have a 32.0 run percentage in their last five games. They’re 2-3 in those five games.
10) Ravens (7-3) Previous: 10
Last week: W16-13@CHI
This week: v. 6-5 Browns
Good news: The Ravens proved they can beat a bad team without Lamar Jackson.
Bad news: Jackson’s replacement, Tyler Huntley, was sacked six times by that bad team.
11) Vikings (5-5) Previous: 11
Last week: W34-31GB
This week: at 5-5 49ers
Good news: Belittle Kirk Cousins all you want. The frickin’ guy has 21 TDs and just 2 INTs this season.
Bad news: Aaron Rodgers shredded the Vikings’ defense for 385 yards and four touchdowns.
12) Colts (6-5) Previous: 14
Last week: W41-15@BUF
This week: v. 7-3 Bucs
Good news: NFL rushing leader Jonathan Taylor has rushed for 473 yards in the last three games.
Bad news: Defense has given up a league-high 25 touchdown passes.
13) Chargers (6-4) Previous: 12
Last week: W41-37PIT
This week: at 5-5 Broncos
Good news: Their Justin Herbert-led offense racked up 533 total yards, the most by the Chargers since Week 1 of 2018 season.
Bad news: Defense gave up a disconcerting 27 fourth-quarter points to the Steelers.
14) 49ers (5-5) Previous: 15
Last week: W30-10@JAX
This week: v. 5-5 Vikings
Good news: Jimmy Garoppolo has had just 10 incompletions in the last two games as the Niners’ ground game has kept defenses off-balance.
Bad news: Defense has just four interceptions in 10 games.
15) Bengals (6-4) Previous: 17
Last week: W32-13@LVR
This week: v. 5-4-1 Steelers
Good news: Joe Mixon has four rushing TDs in the last two games.
Bad news: Joe Burrow threw just one TD pass and averaged a season-low 5.1 yards per attempts against the Raiders.
16) Eagles (5-6) Previous: 21
Last week: W40-29NO
This week: at 3-7 Giants
Good news: The Eagles have 870 rushing yards and 58 rushing first downs in their last four games.
Bad news: The defense still is a concern. It gave up four fourth-quarter scores to the Saints.
17) Saints (5-5) Previous: 13
Last week: L29-40@PHI
This week: v. 6-4 Bills
Good news: Mark Ingram had his best game since re-joining the Saints last month, rushing for 88 yards on 16 carries against the Eagles.
Bad news: Saints have lost three in a row for the first time since the beginning of the 2016 season. They finished 7-9 that year.
18) Broncos (5-5) Previous: 15
Last week: Bye
This week: v. 6-4 Chargers
Good news: Broncos are 10th in rush average (4.5) and 10th in runs of 10 yards or more (33).
Bad news: After starting 3-0, Broncos have lost 5 of their last 7 games. Just one of those 5 losses was by a touchdown or less.
19) Raiders (5-5) Previous: 16
Last week: L13-32CIN
This week: at 7-3 Cowboys
Good news: TE Darren Waller had his first 100-yard receiving game since Week 1.
Bad news: Derek Carr has six turnovers in the Raiders’ three-game losing streak.
20) Steelers (5-4-1) Previous: 20
Last week: L37-41@LAC
This week: at 6-4 Bengals
Good news: Ben Roethlisberger had his first 3-touchdown game of the season.
Bad news: The 41 points by the Chargers were the most given up by the Steelers in 56 games.
21) Browns (6-5) Previous: 19
Last week: W16-13DET
This week: at 7-3 Ravens
Good news: Nick Chubb had his fourth 100-yard rushing performance in his last five starts.
Bad news: Baker Mayfield is playing hurt and playing poorly. He had his second straight game with a sub-60.0 passer rating.
22) Washington (4-6) Previous: 25
Last week: W27-21@CAR
This week: v. 3-7 Seahawks
Good news: Taylor Heinicke has a 127.0 passer rating in Washington’s back-to-back season-saving wins over the Bucs and Panthers
Bad news: Washington is last in the league in third-down defense (53.0). Opposing QBs have a 132.7 passer rating with 12 TD passes against Washington on third down.
23) Panthers (5-6) Previous: 22
Last week: L21-27WAS
This week: at 4-7 Dolphins
Good news: Cam Newton was impressive in his first start, throwing for two TDs and running for another.
Bad news: Panthers ran just 49 offensive plays as Washington controlled the ball on the ground the entire game.
24) Bears (3-7) Previous: 23
Last week: L13-16BAL
This week: at 0-9-1 Lions
Good news: Thanksgiving in Detroit against the winless Lions.
Bad news: Cardinals, Packers and Vikings are on their dance card after that.
25) Falcons (4-6) Previous: 26
Last week: L0-25NE
This week: at 2-8 Jaguars
Good news: It’s Jaguar Week!!
Bad news: The Falcons’ offensive line couldn’t protect Matt Ryan from an angry band of woodchucks.
26) Giants (3-7) Previous: 24
Last week: L10-30@TB
This week: v. 5-6 Eagles
Good news: They’re not as bad as they looked against the Bucs. Really.
Bad news: Even with Saquon Barkley and LT Andrew Thomas back, Giants turned in their worst offensive performance of the season Monday night.
27) Seahawks (3-7) Previous: 27
Last week: L13-23ARI
This week: at 4-6 Washington
Good news: Seahawks have created a league-low six turnovers.
Bad news: Russell Wilson’s return has had little impact. The Seahawks have scored one touchdown in 19 possessions in the two games since he came back.
28) Dolphins (4-7) Previous: 28
Last week: W24-17@NYJ
This week: v. 5-6 Panthers
Good news: They’ve won three in a row and don’t play a team that currently has a winning record until Week 17.
Bad news: Sunday was just the third time this season the Dolphins have rushed for more than 80 yards. They are tied for 30th in rush average (3.4).
29) Texans (2-8) Previous: 32
Last week: W22-13
This week: v. 2-8 Jets
Good news: Their win over the Titans gives them something to put in their highlight film besides pictures of massage tables.
Bad news: Texan QBs have thrown a TD pass in just one of the last five games.
30) Lions (0-9-1) Previous: 30
Last week: L10-13@CLE
This week: v. 3-7 Bears
Good news: Almost beat the Browns with a guy at QB – Tim Boyle – who had never thrown an NFL regular-season pass.
Bad news: Close only counts in horseshoes and hand grenades.
31) Jaguars (2-8) Previous: 29
Last week: L10-30SF
This week: v. 4-6 Falcons
Good news: Second-year RB James Robinson is a very nice building block. He’s sixth in yards-per-carry (5.1) among players with at least 80 carries and tied for sixth in rushing TDs (7).
Bad news: Six of the Jags’ eight losses have been by 10 points or more.
32) Jets (2-7) Previous: 31
Last week: L17-27MIA
This week: at 2-8 Texans
Good news: Jets currently have the second (their own) and fifth (Seattle’s) picks in the first round of next spring’s draft. They can’t screw that up, can they?
Bad news: The defense is an absolute mess. They’ve given up 39.8 points per game in their last five games. They have a league-worst 108.2 opponent passer rating.