The 2022 NFL season is upon us, the time of year when all 32 fanbases share in their optimism, all believing that their team has a chance. There will be some familiar faces at the top, some surprises, and a few shakeups from last season. Let’s take a look at the Raider Ramble’s NFL Power Rankings, Week 1 edition.
NFL Power Rankings: The Cream Of The Crop
1. Buffalo Bills
The Bills lost offensive coordinator Brian Daboll but still have the best roster in the league on paper. If Josh Allen has the MVP season he is capable of, this team could bring in a Lombardi Trophy.
2. Los Angeles Rams
Last year’s Super Bowl Champions are back this year. The only question is Matthew Stafford’s health. As long as everything on the front goes okay, this team is dangerous.
3. Tampa Bay Buccaneers
A team with Tom Brady is always going to be in the hunt. It helps that there is a stacked roster around the 45-year-old.
4. Kansas City Chiefs
Patrick Mahomes is without speedster Tyreek Hill, but the offense remains balanced. No one will want to see the Chiefs late in the season.
5. Cincinnati Bengals
The Bengals greatly improved in the offseason, especially with regard to their offensive line. They are potentially the best offense in the league and should score at will this year.
6. Los Angeles Chargers
Justin Herbert might take that MVP-like step this season. The Chargers improved immensely by adding Khalil Mack and J.C. Jackson, and Derwin James will be healthy too.
7. San Francisco 49ers
It is the Trey Lance era now in San Francisco. The 49ers will go as Lance does in his first season at the helm. All around, the 49ers have a chance to get it done.
8. Green Bay Packers
An Aaron Rodgers-led team is always going to be in the hunt. The Packers will have to develop some receivers, but the defense should give them the time to do that over the season.
9. Baltimore Ravens
There was not a team with more injuries in the league last year, it seemed. Lamar Jackson is paired with a good rookie class as well as some healthy players back, such as J.K. Dobbins. The Ravens will be in the hunt for the AFC North.
10. Dallas Cowboys
Though Dallas traded their top wideout, they still boast a very good team. The defense should be good, and the offense will have a nice balance.
NFL Power Rankings: Who Cracked The Second Tier?
11. Philadelphia Eagles
The Eagles have quietly put together a great wide receiver room led by DeVonta Smith and A.J. Brown. If Jalen Hurts’ arm can do the work, Philadelphia will be making some noise.
12. Denver Broncos
The Broncos looked to be a quarterback away last year, but the rest of the roster was pretty good. They now have that guy in Russell Wilson.
13. Arizona Cardinals
Adding Marquise “Hollywood” Brown to a room with DeAndre Hopkins once he’s back will be nice. The Cardinals’ offense should be good because they have some pieces in place on defense as well. A nicely balanced team.
14. Las Vegas Raiders
Another exciting offense on paper. Davante Adams paired with Darren Walker and Hunter Renfrow will give Derek Carr all the help he needs.
15. Cleveland Browns
The Browns would be ranked higher if Deshaun Watson hadn’t been suspended for 11 games. In terms of the rest of the roster, it is stacked.
16. Indianapolis Colts
Maybe the best running back in the league, along with a veteran quarterback and a nice receiving group. The Colts could surprise some teams this year.
17. Tennessee Titans
The Titans decided to change course in the wide receiver room by trading A.J. Brown. They also drafted rookie quarterback Malik Willis. It will be interesting to see how long Ryan Tannehill can keep Willis off the field.
Playoff contenders? Pretenders?
18. New Orleans Saints
Jameis Winston is back for the Saints this year, the season rests on how good he can be. The receiver room is good, along with a solid defense. Don’t be surprised if the Saints end up competing for a playoff spot.
19. New England Patriots
Mac Jones made the Pro Bowl in Year 1, but can he make a jump in his second season two against an improving AFC East?
20. Miami Dolphins
Miami made a splash move by trading for the speedy Tyreek Hill. Now, the Dolphins find out this year if Tua Tagovailoa can be the guy for the long-term future.
21. Minnesota Vikings
The Vikings have Kirk Cousins signed until 2024, but will they be looking for a quarterback sooner rather than later?
22. Pittsburgh Steelers
Maybe Kenny Pickett is the guy for the Steelers, or Mitchell Trubisky can revive his career. The offensive line is not very good, and that may be their downfall.
23. Washington Commanders
The Commanders have some pieces on offense and defense still. Carson Wentz is at quarterback for his third team, so is third time the charm for him?
24. New York Jets
Zach Wilson’s getting back healthy is step No. 1. The Jets had a good draft. This may be a development year, however.
25. New York Giants
New head coach Brian Daboll will try to fix Daniel Jones, but neither he nor the general manager are attached to the draft pick. This is maybe another spot for a rookie quarterback next season.
Who’s The Bottom Of The Barrel?
26. Detroit Lions
The Lions have a young roster that is improving, that includes rookie defensive end, Aidan Hutchinson. However, Jared Goff is still under center.
27. Carolina Panthers
The Panthers will need a career year from Baker Mayfield to be a better-than-average team. That is something that will have to be proven.
28. Jacksonville Jaguars
Jacksonville could surprise some people, maybe they end up better than a bottom-tier team again. They have a young roster, but a very talented one. Trevor Lawrence needs to take a big step forward this season.
29. Chicago Bears
You just have to feel for Justin Fields. Mostly due to the environment the Bears have put him in.
30. Houston Texans
Everyone in the Houston organization wants you to believe that Davis Mills is the guy, he’s yet to prove it though.
31. Atlanta Falcons
Calvin Ridley is suspended for the season, which would have helped a young offense with Kyle Pitts and Drake London. The Falcons have a lot of holes remaining.
32. Seattle Seahawks
Seattle moved on from Russell Wilson, putting them in this final spot. It may be worth it in the end if Bryce Young or CJ Stroud are their draft selections next year.
Stay tuned, the Raider Ramble will be bringing you another edition of NFL Power Rankings halfway through the season!
*Top Photo: Sportingnews/NFL