NFL power rankings after Week 2:
1. San Francisco: There doesn’t appear to be a weakness. Owning the league’s best defense is a solid foundation. Now the offense is showing improvement. Alex Smith and the passing game are contributing. A very impressive start.
2. Houston: The Texans haven’t played a playoff caliber team but have played well. How Houston fares on the road at Denver will provide some insight, especially how the defense fares against Peyton Manning.
3. Green Bay: The Packers rebounded from their opening loss to the 49ers with a never-in-doubt win over the Bears. Green Bay has some concerns but with Aaron Rodgers the Packers have a chance to win any game.
4. Baltimore: The Ravens owned the lead much of the game at Philadelphia. It slipped away at the end. A couple of questionable calls were a factor. This team is solid on both sides of the ball. A showdown with New England will leave one of the top AFC contenders at 1-2 after Week 3.
5. Atlanta: The Falcons are off to a 2-0 start. The offense is one of the most explosive in the league. How the defense plays will determine whether Atlanta is one of the higher seeds in the NFC. New Orleans’ 0-2 start makes the Falcons the overwhelming favorite in the NFC South.
6. New England: The Patriots laid an egg in their home opener against the Cardinals. Arizona has a solid defense but it was strange to see Tom Brady and the offense struggle. A loss to Baltimore would raise even more questions.
7. Philadelphia: The Eagles could just as easily be 0-2 as 2-0. The good news is they’ve found a way to rally for wins despite a rash of turnovers. The bad news is Michael Vick and the Eagles haven’t played well.
8. Denver: Peyton Manning throwing three interceptions the first quarter in a Monday Night loss at Atlanta was shocking. Manning, though, showed in the second half why the Broncos are much improved.
9. Dallas: The Cowboys followed an impressive win Week 1 at the Giants with a loss to Seattle, a game the Seahawks controlled with their ground game. Inconsistency has been an issue the past 15 years. Until the Cowboys prove otherwise there will be skeptics.
10. San Diego: The Chargers won two games they were favored to win. The defense has played well. Running back Ryan Matthews is expected back in Week 3. San Diego hosting the Falcons in Week 3 is a good matchup.
11. Chicago: A week after the offense showed signs of putting up big numbers, quarterback Jay Cutler struggled against a mediocre Green Bay defense. The offensive line is a concern but the Bears have a well rounded roster when Cutler plays well.
12. Arizona: The Cardinals escaped the first week against Seattle then duplicated it with a noteworthy win at New England, dodging a bullet (field goal) at the end. The defense is underrated but the offense has issues.