The field is rounding the turn but not yet headed for the home stretch and some things are becoming rather clear. There are perhaps more teams with what Red views as a legitimate shot at Conference title games than Red would have expected a few weeks ago. But the cream is still on top and most of the jockeying (to continue Red’s racing analogy) is among the second tier who might put together a stretch drive for good playoff positioning. Let’s get to it again with the caveat that Red is not waiting for the MNF result as he has a busy week ahead.
Red’s Top Ten
- Pittsburgh Stealers (9-0). There is no reason to shake things up at the top after Stealers dismantled the Bengals on Sunday. Red does question how long the Stealers can keep it going with a bare semblance of a rushing attack.
- Kansas City Chiefs (8-1). Red wants to put them on top. That day is likely coming soon. But there are no complete pushovers left on the schedule. Sunday the Chiefs have a chance to even the score against the Raiders. Red predicts a blowout win.
- New Orleans Saints (7-2). This might be short-lived depending on Drew Brees’ condition. But the Saints probably have the easiest remaining schedule of any of the prime contenders. Other than a strong test against the Chiefs, the Saints should be heavily favored in every other game.
- Buffalo Bills (7-3). Despite a tough loss to the ascendant Cardinals, Josh Allen will be the regular season MVP. Two costly interceptions yesterday allowed the Cards to stay in the game long enough to pull out a squeaker.
- Green Bay Packers (7-2). Red isn’t sure how the Packers are doing it, but they are doing it. Eking out a win over the Jaguars is not a good sign.
- Arizona Cardinals (6-3). Now official atop the glorious NFC West, the Cards get a chance to secure the lead on Thursday against the Seahawks – the rare game that Red is actually looking forward to.
- Tampa Bay Buccaneers (7-3). They are going to have a tough road to catch the Saints who currently hold all the tiebreakers in the NFC South. Red thinks the Rams just might beat them next Monday.
- Indianapolis Colts (6-3). Despite having handily handled the tanking Titans on Sunday, Red still predicts a dogfight between the Colts and Titans for the AFC South Crown. The best 9-7 is probably going to win it.
- Baltimore Ravens (6-3). Red wants to believe, but the Ravens are a mere loss away from dropping out of his top ten. The Ravens’ offense right now looks like BIll O’Brien is in charge. They have talent – use it!
- Tennessee Titans (6-3). This team has a very limited window of opportunity to right the ship. The Titans and Ravens play on Sunday – whichever team loses is in danger of missing the playoffs.
The Best of the Rest
The Miami Dolphins have won 5 games in a row. And yes you read that correctly. The Chicago Bears desperately need a win tonight to maintain relevancy. The Seattle Seahawks are reeling as the MVP slips from R. Wilson’s grasp. The LA Rams will be back in the mix with a win over the Buccaneers next week. The LV Raiders and Cleveland Browns are hanging in there for a Wildcard spot.
The Bottom Feeders
- Houston Texans (2-7). No team has done less with more. Red had predicted a decent finish for the Texans but now it’s hard to see more than one more win on the schedule unless there is a dramatic turnaround in Houston.
- Dallas Cowboys (2-7). Now sucking more than ever. Their two wins were miracles. Miracles are all used up for the season.
- Washington FT (2-7). Following the lead of Trump, the FT’s are now refusing to admit that they have lost any games.
- Jacksonville Jaguars (1-8). They should be ranked lower, but Red gets tired of piling on.
- New Jersey Jets (0-9). See Jacksonville Jaguars.