We made it. The NFL is back and we have already been gifted with some great college football. For as great as the college scene is, however, nothing tops the NFL. Although we don’t have any regular season action to judge teams on, it’s still not difficult to separate the contenders from the pretenders. The only question is where do the teams stack up and who cracks the top 10 in the first NFL Power Rankings of the season?
Here are your NFL Power Rankings for Week 1 of the 2022-23 season. .
NFL Power Rankings for Week 1
Favorites | NFL Power Rankings
1) Los Angeles Rams
A lot has changed for the Los Angeles Rams since they beat the Cincinnati Bengals in Super Bowl LVI. Although long-time offensive lineman Andrew Whitworth, receivers Robert Woods and Odell Beckham Jr., and linebacker Von Miller are all gone, the Rams still found a way to retool. Most notably, the Rams signed linebacker Bobby Wagner and receiver Allen Robinson. Although it may take the Rams some time to get acclimated to all the changes in the locker room, they still have to be the best team in the NFL heading into the 2022 NFL season.
2) Buffalo Bills
After decimating the New England Patriots in the AFC Wild Card, the Buffalo Bills blew a late lead to the Kansas City Chiefs in the AFC Divisional round and fell in overtime at Arrowhead Stadium. In a game that very easily also could have ended in their favor, the Bills proved that they are among the class of the AFC. For the 2022 season, the already dangerous Bills added one of the most feared defensive players in the league, Von Miller, and look like the favorites in the AFC.
3) San Francisco 49ers
A magical season for the 49ers ended in heartbreaking fashion in a three-point loss to the eventual champion Rams in the NFC Championship. Quarterback Trey Lance has now had a year to grow and looks primed for a breakout campaign. The defense is as strong as ever, and the 49ers are ready to show their run in last year’s playoffs was no fluke.
4) Baltimore Ravens
The Baltimore Ravens got the short end of the stick when it came to injuries last season. After losing their top two running backs before the regular season, the Ravens also lost quarterback Lamar Jackson for part of the season as well. Baltimore comes into the 2022 season healthy again, and they arguably have the best draft class in the NFL. Even though the Bengals fell just short of winning the Super Bowl last season, on paper, the Ravens are still the team to beat in the AFC North.
5) Cincinnati Bengals
Nobody expected the Bengals to do what they did last year, but now a deep playoff run is expected. The only question for the Bengals will again be the ability of their offensive line. Offseason additions of Ted Karras, Alex Cappa and La’el Collins should be more than enough to shore up an offensive line that gave up 51 sacks last season. If the receiving corps of Ja’Marr Chase, Tee Higgins and Tyler Boyd can take another step this season, the Bengals could make yet another real push at the Super Bowl.
Contenders | NFL Power Rankings
6) Kansas City Chiefs
Before going on an incredibly hot streak to end the season, the Kansas City Chiefs looked extremely flawed to start the 2021 season. While they were able to rebound, the loss of dynamic receiver Tyreek Hill in the offseason could bring some serious growing pains for the Chiefs, even with the additions of JuJu Smith Schuster and Marquez Valdes-Scantling. As is always the case with the Chiefs, their defensive play will define how far they go this season.
7) Green Bay Packers
After winning his second consecutive NFL MVP award, Aaron Rodgers lost his top receiver in Davante Adams this offseason. The Green Bay Packers have seemingly gone “all in” on their defense and have given Rodgers one of the weakest receiving corps in the NFL. If the likes of Romeo Doubs and Christian Watson can step up quickly, this team will easily make the playoffs, but only time will tell if they can finally get over the hump and back to the Super Bowl.
8) Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Thankfully for Tampa Bay Buccaneers fans, Tom Brady came out of retirement. Unfortunately for Brady, offensive linemen Ryan Jensen and Aaron Stinnie have already been put on injured reserve with Tristan Wirfs also being questionable for their Week 1 matchup against the Dallas Cowboys. The receiving corps has somehow improved again with the addition of Julio Jones and Russell Gage, however, time will tell if Brady is granted enough time to throw the ball. Although the Buccaneers are certainly not the favorite in the NFC, you can never count out a team led by Tom Brady.
9) Los Angeles Chargers
Say what you will about his coaching style as a whole, but Brandon Staley’s “analytics” coaching style cost the Los Angeles Chargers a playoff spot last season. From constantly passing up field goals in games eventually decided in overtime to numerous blunders in a Week 18 overtime loss to the Las Vegas Raiders, the Chargers were a playoff team that was held back by their own coach. This year, the same team is back along with the addition of linebacker Khalil Mack. If Staley can stay out of his own way, the Chargers are a threat to anyone in the AFC.
10) Las Vegas Raiders
The Las Vegas Raiders may have needed a collapse by the Indianapolis Colts to get into the playoffs last year, but with the addition of wide receiver Davante Adams, the Raiders are expected to get in without needing much help this year. The defense and offensive line will be topics of some concern, but many forget the Raiders lost by just seven points in the AFC Wild Card to the eventual runner-up Bengals. However, with the third hardest strength of schedule in the league, the Raiders can’t afford to stumble out of the gates.