Football is back. Everyone is 0-0. It’s a clean, fresh slate. There are 32 teams fighting for the #1 spot. Not in power rankings, but hoisting the Lombardi. These power rankings in particular, are my best guess at who has the best odds of raising the trophy above their heads in Las Vegas in February 2024.

1) Kansas City Chiefs

There’s no doubt about it. The Kansas City Chiefs are the team to beat. Fresh off of a 38-35 victory over the Philadelphia Eagles, the Chiefs look to defend their title and become the first repeat Super Bowl Champions in 2 decades. In what might be the most loaded either conference has ever been in the history of the NFL, they’ve got a tough task ahead of them. Having to beat out Josh Allen, Joe Burrow, Justin Herbert, Lamar Jackson, Trevor Lawrence, Aaron Rodgers, Tua Tagovailoa, and Russell Wilson is no easy task. Granted, they aren’t guaranteed to play all of those quarterbacks and their respective teams, but if they do, and I had to bet money on it to save my life, I’m betting on the Chiefs. They’re the Patriots of the 2020’s.

2) Baltimore Ravens

The Ravens 2022 season didn’t neccesarily go as planned. Lamar got injured when they were leading the entire AFC, and never returned. They managed to squeak into the playoffs, but lost off a 98 yard fumble return for a touchdown. Not how you neccesarily want to go out. Now while many may overlook the Ravens, I look at them and see one of football’s elite. When Lamar Jackson is healthy in his career, this Ravens team has been near unstoppable. Not to mention, he now has the best weapons of his entire career, a new offensive co-ordinator with a pass-first mindset and a top 10 defense, this Ravens team is not to be messed with. They will do damage this season. Expect them to win the AFC North with ease.

3) Dallas Cowboys

This really might be the Cowboys year. The defense is loaded with talent. The offense has incredible depth. They did lose TE Dalton Schultz in free agency to the Houston Texans, but they added WR Brandin Cooks, who is exceptional even at this point in his career. The joke as old as time with Dallas is “it’s our year!” which they do say every year. But the NFC has never been so wide open. The best quarterback Dallas has to face in their own conference is Jalen Hurts, and compared to what they’d be up against in the AFC, they’ll take that any day of the week. And I’ll take Dallas to cakewalk their division.

4) Buffalo Bills

The Buffalo Bills disrespect this offseason has been getting out of hand. Although they didn’t make the flashy moves that their fellow division rivals did this offseason, no team (other than Kansas City) has been more consistent and won more games over the past 4 seasons. Allen has thrown over 35 touchdowns in the past 3 seasons, on top of 6+ rushing touchdowns in each of those. That’s not even including the 5000 total yards in each one of those years too. The only player other than Allen doing that, is Mahomes. It’s really just trendy to hate Buffalo right now, and that’s fine. They don’t need the media telling them they’re a good team, they just continue to show it year after year.

5) Cincinnati Bengals

Joe Burrow has completely turned the culture around in Cincinnati. The Bengals have made a Super Bowl appearance and a run to the final 4, but have brought home no hardware. There’s no doubt in my mind that the Bengals are a good team loaded with all-pro talent. There is questions about Joe Burrow’s health, but if he misses time he won’t be out long enough to de-rail the season. Cincinnati is easily a 10+ win team, will challenge for the AFC North title, and will more than likely win a playoff game.

6) Philadelphia Eagles

Last season, the Eagles went on a run in the weakest the NFC has probably ever been. Rodgers and Brady fell off to their standards, and there is no other Top 10 QB talent in the conference. This year, Hurts might be the only Top 10 QB in the conference. Albeit he might be overrated, he’s still very good, and this Eagles roster is the best in the league. Their schedule was a cakewalk last season, so expect a slight fall off in the wins department this season.

7) Miami Dolphins

As a Bills fan, I’m expecting to hate the Dolhpins. Now, don’t get me wrong, I do. But one thing I’m not ashamed to admit; I think Tua is a top 10 QB in the league. Now his first 3 seasons haven’t neccesarily been as smooth or as good as Burrow or Herbert, but when healthy last season, Tagovailoa was amongst the league’s elite. Arguably in the toughest division in football, Tua and Miami have a lot set out for them. But year 2 in Head Coach Mike McDaniel’s scheme will take Tua’s game to the next level. Only up from here for Miami.

8) Jacksonville Jaguars

This feels like a pretty low ranking for the Jaguars, especially because I believe they’ll be the #1 seed out of the AFC this season. But being the #1 seed doesn’t always mean you’re the best team. Some teams have easier schedules than others, and it truly is a week to week league. Jacksonville might be the only team in the league that will go 6-0 in the division; they play 2 rookie QBs and a Titans team that is just… average. With the addition of Calvin Ridley, expect Trevor Lawrence to take that next step to becoming the MVP caliber QB he’s been hyped to be for so long.

9) San Francisco 49ers

Brock Purdy getting injured in the NFC championship might have costed the franchise another trip to the Super Bowl- that is up for debate whether Purdy could’ve won that game. But that’s behind us. Purdy is healthy, but even though he’s healthy, I am still scared that this 49ers team is just going to not be good. They’re loaded with superstar talent, which reminds me a lot of the Los Angleles Rams on their Super Bowl run. Which in theory, sounds like a good thing. They did add McCaffrey last season, but remember when Jimmy Garropolo would get injured in the past? This team became poverty. After all, it’s how they landed reigning Defensive Player of the Year Nick Bosa. Purdy has an elbow that could potentially be shot, and only 8 games of experience in his career. The 49ers have huge boom or bust potential this year, and it needs to be talked about more.

10) New York Jets

Aaron Rodgers has brought Super Bowl aspirations to the state of New Jersey. After last season’s chaos at the QB position, Rodgers brings stability and mentorship for 2021 2nd overall pick Zach Wilson. This Jets team is talented. You could even argue they have more high end talent than some of the teams above them on this list. Talent isn’t the concern. The concern is the media overrating this team based off the potential. Which is normal for media to do. The Jets have an incredibly tough schedule, and if Mac Jones can find his groove and return to rookie season form, the Jets could end up as the 4th best team in this division. Expectations are high so there’s no exceeding them. Only inevitable dissapointment.

11) Detroit Lions

Some aren’t buying into the Lions hype in 2023. I am. There’s a reason the NFL has them taking on Kansas City on the Thursday Night opener; they believe too. Although the Lions didn’t make the playoffs last season, and even started 3-8 in 2022, they found their groove, and made great additions to their defense. The Vikings got very lucky last season, Green Bay has question marks with the departure of Rodgers, and let’s be honest, the Bears stink. The NFC North has never been more wide open, and a page might be finally starting to turn for a franchise that has been the dictionary definition of poverty for theirn entire existence.

12) Los Angeles Chargers

I’m not here to make excuses for the Chargers. But Justin Herbert did play last season injured, and still had an alright season. It’s a struggle being stuck behind the Chiefs in the same division, but if the Chargers can stay healthy, the potential is there to take them down. Kansas City isn’t invincible. Injuries aren’t even my biggest concern with this team- it’s the coaching. Brandon Staley has proven to be a pretty poor coach through his tenure, and as a defensive first head coach, his defenses have stunk. If all the pieces of the puzzle fit this season, Los Angeles can do some damage.

13) Pittsburgh Steelers

Let’s put the talent of this defense into perspective- if the Chiefs had all the players on this Steelers defense (along with their scheme, obviously) they quite literally would never lose a game again. Even with Watt missing several games last season, and getting below average play and production from the quarterback position, they still managed to finish with a winning record at 9-8. Not to mention, they haven’t had an efficient run game either. Now, imagine if both the QB position and RB position can give Top 15 production, they could win their division. Imagine if they got Top 10 production from either of those positions. They’d win the Super Bowl. Don’t overlook Pittsburgh and 2nd year QB Kenny Pickett.

14) Seattle Seahawks

After trading Russell Wilson in the 2022 offseason, many had projected Seattle for the deepest depths of poverty franchise- myself included. But, Geno Smith emerged and ended up leading the Seahawks to the playoffs. If Smith can perform close or even above the level he did in 2022, the Seattle Seahawks will have a very good 2023 campaign. They’ve attempted to address their run defense, bringing back Bobby Wagner. They’ve even added new weapons for the offense in Jaxon Smith-Njigba and Zach Charbonnet. Smith-Njigba was regarded by many as the best reciever in the 2023 class, and he joins a solid core of DK Metcalf and Tyler Lockett. No excuses for Seattle this season.

15) Minnesota Vikings

The Vikings might have been the luckiest team in NFL history last season. Not only did they make the playoffs with a negative point differential, they went 11-0 in one-score games. It’s not the fact that they won all those games, it’s how many they won. Most teams get lucky if they win half that amount, and if the Vikings went 6-5 in one score games, they would’ve been under .500. They lost some key pieces this offseason, added some nice weapons to the offense like Jordan Addison. New defensive coordinator Brian Flores has some work to do with that defense, he’s done some magic in the past, but will it be enough to get Minnesota back to the playoffs?

16) Cleveland Browns

For a little while, it looked like Cleveland was climbing out of dumpster fire status as a franchise. In 2020, they won 11 games, even won a playoff game, and almost won another. Things were looking up for the dawg pound. It all came crashing down, stuff happened and now Deshaun Watson is their quarterback. Seems like a mess, doesn’t it? That’s because it is. Watson looked horrid when he returned from suspension last season, but missing nearly 30 games, which is almost 2 full seasons, will leave you with some rust. With that being said, I would bet on Watson returning to Top 10 form. I just can’t see how a nearly 28 year old peak athlete falls off as hard as he potentially could. Watson is just too talented. But there’s no excuses if he does, because a lot of people will lose their jobs for attempting what will go down as the worst trade in NFL history.

17) Denver Broncos

Anyone with 2 eyes and a single braincell knows whatever happened in Denver was quite literally one of the worst coaching jobs in the history of ever. Russell Wilson and the Broncos had Super Bowl aspirations, only to have their first year head coach fired mid-season- that’s how you know it’s bad. Now, enter Sean Payton. The head coach looks to revitalize Wilson’s career and help the Broncos return to the postseason for the first time since 2015. Although I’m unsure if this roster can make the playoffs, I’m confident to say that Russell Wilson will be significantly better than he was last season.

18) New Orleans Saints

Derek Carr walks into New Orleans and instantly becomes the best QB in the division. With Tom Brady retiring, the NFC South is wide open. Although I don’t think this division is as terrible as everyone thinks it is, with the unpredictability and instability of the QB position on the other 3 teams in the division, I’m taking the team with the best and most proven QB. Although the Saints won’t be great, Carr will be good enough to get them to the playoffs.

19) New York Giants

The Giants exceeded all expectations in the first year under head coach Brian Daboll. Daniel Jones cut back big time on turnovers, Saquon ran all over teams, and the Giants even won a playoff game. Now, Jones got paid, and Barkley is back on a 1-year deal. Not much has changed in New Jersey. The Giants represent what it means to be an average team, and this year, they’ll be average once again. Not too good, not too bad. If Daniel Jones can take another step, then maybe it’s a different story.

20) Tennessee Titans

The Titans are one of the more interesting franchises right now. They’ve got talent on both sides of the ball, they’ve got a capable starter and a good head coach. Sounds like a playoff team to me. But they’re very hot and cold. After starting 7-3 last season, the Titans proceeded to lose every single game. If they won their Week 18 game, they would’ve been a playoff team, albeit not a good one. Tennesse has the potential to be one of the biggest risers on this list, but they also have great potential to be the biggest faller. Could we see Tennessee selecting one of the top QBs in this year’s draft?

21) Green Bay Packers

The Packers did not have a good season in 2022, finishing with a losing record. They also moved on from QB Aaron Rodgers, which means 4th year quarterback Jordan Love is finally getting his chance to start fulltime. The Packers didn’t do much to help Love succeed and the NFC got slightly better than it was last year. I wouldn’t expect the Packers to do much at all. They could be one of the bottom 5 teams in football if Love can’t put it together.

22) Carolina Panthers

Carolina Panthers quarterback Bryce Young runs with the ball during the first half of an NFL preseason football game against the New York Giants, Friday, Aug. 18, 2023, in East Rutherford, N.J. (AP Photo/John Munson)

The Panthers traded away your parents’ mortgage to select Alabama QB Bryce Young 1st Overall in the 2023 Draft. The roster they’ve inevitably left him with is adequate for a Year 1 QB to grow and get better. With a weakened NFC South, if all goes right in Carolina and Bryce Young exceeds expectations, Carolina could win the division. But I wouldn’t bet on it.

23) New England Patriots

Pittsburgh, PA – 9/18/2022 – 19PATRIOTS-STEELERS- (4th quarter} – New England Patriots quarterback Mac Jones (10) lets out a howl as he shows his frustration after failing to convert on third down during the fourth quarter. The Pittsburgh Steelers host the New England Patriots on September 18, 2022 at Acrisure stadium in Pittsburgh. PA. – (Photo by: Barry Chin/Globe Staff) Section: Sports, Reporter: Jim McBride, Arc ID:

Bill Belichick should’ve been put in a retirement home for what he did to Mac Jones last season. After a solid rookie year, they decided to allow Matt Patrica to be his offensive coordinator. If that was anyone other than Belichick, they would’ve been sent on the first trip to the sun. New England’s defense will be good once again, so their seaason hinges on the success of the offense.

24) Washington Commanders

CLEVELAND, OH – AUGUST 11: Washington Commanders quarterback Sam Howell (14) during a pre-season game between the Washington Commanders and the Cleveland Browns at the FirstEnergy Stadium on August 11, 2023 in Cleveland, OH. (Photo by John McDonnell/The Washington Post)

It’s a new era in Washington. The old, corrupt ownership has been replaced. Fans in D.C. have reason for optimism in 2023. The defense has plenty of potential. The offense is solid. The main question is at quarterback with Sam Howell leading the charge. If new offensive coordinator Eric Bieniemy can help Howell breakout and be a Top 15 Qb, Washington could be on path to make the playoffs once again.

25) Las Vegas Raiders

Josh McDaniels and Jimmy Garropolo have reunited once again. They lead a Las Vegas roster that has plenty of weapons on offense; Davante Adams, Jakobi Meyers, Josh Jacobs and even rookie tight end Michael Mayer. Not to mention Hunter Renfrow, who is not too far removed from a 1000 yard season. Garropolo isnt much of an upgrade over Carr in terms of skill, but in terms of ability to work in McDaniels scheme? The upgrade is huge. Carr wasn’t the only Raider that struggled last season, the defense did. This defense has been poor since Khalil Mack was traded to the Bears in 2018, and that’s not going to change anytime soon. Expect a long season for Las Vegas.

26) Los Angeles Rams

Ever since winning Super Bowl 56, it’s been nothing but downhill for the Rams. Stafford, Kupp and Donald all missed significant time in 2022, and all 3 are expected to make a return in 2023 (Kupp is still out with a hamstring issue). This team lacks talent, and money- they’ve got a historic number of rookies on their roster. Even with all the inexperience, I think their top end talent and elite head coach is too good to have Los Angeles be the bottom of the bottom this season. They won’t be good, but their star talent will win them some games.

27) Tampa Bay Buccaneers

2022 was something many Bucs fans would like to forget. Tom Brady retired after a dissapointed 8-9 season, and he was replaced with Baker Mayfield. Ongoing contract issues with star WR Mike Evans could make it his last in Tampa. The reciever has given the team until September 9th to reach a deal. It’s likely going to be a long and sad season in Tampa. Start looking forward to the draft, Bucs fans.

28) Indianapolis Colts

Florida quarterback Anthony Richardson reacts after being chosen by the Indianapolis Colts with the fourth overall pick during the first round of the NFL football draft, Thursday, April 27, 2023, in Kansas City, Mo. (AP Photo/Jeff Roberson)

Anthony Richardson is another on the long list of Week 1 starters since 2016 for Indy. Richardson is very raw as a prospect, so there’s not many expectations for him to succeed this season. It doesn’t help that running back Jonathan Taylor is goinv to miss atleast the first 4 games of the season. Indianapolis should be excited for their young quarterback, who was named captain. That speaks volumes to his character, leadership and should have fans raving in the crowd this season.

29) Chicago Bears

Dec 18, 2022; Chicago, Illinois, USA; Chicago Bears quarterback Justin Fields (1) practices before the game against the Philadelphia Eagles at Soldier Field. Mandatory Credit: Mike Dinovo-USA TODAY Sports

I am not buying into the Justin Fields hype. Through 2 seasons, he’s shown a tremendous ability to run the ball, establishing himself as the best running QB in the league. But unfortunately for him, that’s not the primary job requirement; he simply cannot throw the ball, or read a defense to save his life. Chicago managed to add D.J. Moore when they traded down from first overall, but I imagine this time they won’t be trading down.

30) Atlanta Falcons

Aug 18, 2023; Atlanta, Georgia, USA; Atlanta Falcons running back Bijan Robinson (7) pulls down a catch during pregame warmups before their game against the Cincinnati Bengals at Mercedes-Benz Stadium. Mandatory Credit: John David Mercer-USA TODAY Sports

Going into the season with Desmond Ridder as your QB1 is a bold move. The Falcons have surrounded Ridder with more than enough to succeed. They’ve got the best runningback room in the league, paired with young studs in Kyle Pitts and Drake London. The issue isn’t neccesarily offense, it’s their defense. It’s not good, and it hasn’t been good for a while. It doesn’t get to the quarterback and they don’t get turnovers. It’s going to be a long year.

31) Houston Texans

If it wasn’t for the very obvious choice to pick first overall fielding a high school varsity team, the Texans would be dead last. They stink. The roster sucks, and they’re throwing rookie QB C.J. Stroud out there and basically saying “good luck kid.” The hiring of Demeco Ryans was a good one, and hopefully it can start to be the turning of the tide in Houston

32) Arizona Cardinals

If kyler somehow ends up playing 0 games this season, this team will win 0 games. Plain and simple.

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