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Week 8 Pundit Power Rankings: Chiefs return to second place

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It’s not surprising the Chiefs moved up a notch — it’s just surprising how few of the pundits thought they deserved it

Cincinnati Bengals v Kansas City Chiefs Photo by David Eulitt/Getty Images

Following their 45-10 win over the Cincinnati Bengals. the Kansas City Chiefs were rewarded with a slight uptick in our aggregated Pundit Power Rankings for Week 8 — moving back into second place. Here’s how the NFL shook out once all of Tuesday’s pundit rankings were tabulated.

Pundit Power Rankings for Week 8

Chiefs AFC West Teams Other AFC Teams

Rank Team ESPN MMQB NFL SBN SpNws Yahoo CBS USA
1
(1)
Rams
7-0
1
(1)
1
(1)
1
(1)
1
(1)
1
(1)
1
(1)
1
(1)
1
(1)
2
(3)
Chiefs
6-1
2
(3)
3
(4)
3
(3)
3
(3)
4
(4)
2
(2)
4
(4)
4
(4)
3
(3)
Saints
5-1
4
(4)
2
(3)
4
(4)
4
(4)
2
(3)
4
(4)
2
(2)
2
(3)
4
(2)
Patriots
5-2
3
(2)
4
(2)
2
(2)
2
(2)
3
(2)
3
(3)
3
(3)
3
(2)
5
(5)
Chargers
5-2
5
(8)
7
(8)
6
(6)
5
(5)
6
(5)
6
(7)
5
(6)
5
(5)
6
(6)
Vikings
4-2-1
6
(10)
5
(5)
5
(5)
7
(7)
5
(6)
5
(5)
8
(8)
6
(9)
7
(9)
Steelers
3-2-1
8
(9)
8
(7)
9
(8)
8
(10)
8
(8)
8
(11)
7
(7)
8
(7)
8
(7)
Ravens
4-3
7
(5)
10
(12)
8
(7)
6
(6)
10
(7)
10
(9)
6
(5)
7
(6)
Rank Team ESPN MMQB NFL SBN SpNws Yahoo CBS USA
9
(11)
Panthers
4-2
9
(13)
8
(13)
7
(9)
10
(14)
7
(10)
7
(8)
10
(15)
10
(13)
10
(11)
Packers
3-2-1
12
(14)
6
(8)
13
(13)
13
(13)
11
(13)
11
(14)
11
(14)
11
(12)
11
(16)
Redskins
4-2
14
(16)
12
(19)
10
(16)
9
(16)
9
(12)
12
(15)
9
(9)
9
(11)
12
(8)
Eagles
3-4
10
(6)
11
(6)
14
(12)
12
(9)
13
(9)
9
(6)
17
(13)
13
(10)
13
(10)
Bengals
4-3
11
(7)
14
(10)
16
(10)
15
(8)
12
(11)
13
(12)
12
(10)
12
(8)
14
(14)
Bears
3-3
13
(12)
18
(18)
11
(11)
11
(12)
16
(15)
14
(13)
16
(12)
15
(15)
15
(20)
Texans
4-3
17
(21)
13
(17)
15
(21)
14
(20)
14
(21)
19
(25)
13
(20)
17
(18)
16
(22)
Lions
3-3
20
(23)
16
(20)
12
(17)
17
(24)
18
(22)
15
(18)
14
(21)
19
(23)
Rank Team ESPN MMQB NFL SBN SpNws Yahoo CBS USA
17
(18)
Seahawks
3-3
16
(17)
17
(21)
17
(18)
18
(18)
17
(16)
16
(19)
19
(19)
16
(17)
18
(15)
Dolphins
4-3
18
(15)
21
(14)
21
(19)
16
(11)
15
(14)
17
(16)
15
(11)
20
(14)
19
(19)
Falcons
3-4
19
(19)
15
(15)
20
(23)
25
(23)
19
(19)
24
(24)
21
(23)
14
(16)
20
(13)
Jaguars
3-4
15
(11)
19
(11)
23
(15)
20
(15)
21
(18)
20
(10)
23
(17)
24
(21)
21
(17)
Cowboys
3-4
22
(20)
20
(15)
18
(14)
23
(21)
20
(17)
22
(20)
18
(16)
18
(19)
22
(21)
Titans
3-4
21
(18)
23
(22)
22
(24)
19
(17)
25
(23)
23
(23)
24
(18)
23
(24)
23
(26)
Broncos
3-4
23
(24)
22
(26)
19
(26)
21
(27)
23
(24)
25
(26)
20
(28)
26
(25)
24
(25)
Buccaneers
3-3
24
(26)
25
(25)
24
(25)
26
(26)
24
(26)
21
(21)
22
(25)
21
(26)
Rank Team ESPN MMQB NFL SBN SpNws Yahoo CBS USA
25
(23)
Jets
3-4
27
(25)
26
(23)
26
(22)
24
(22)
22
(20)
18
(17)
25
(22)
25
(22)
26
(23)
Browns
2-4-1
25
(22)
24
(24)
25
(20)
27
(19)
27
(25)
26
(22)
27
(24)
22
(20)
27
(27)
Colts
2-5
26
(27)
27
(28)
27
(29)
22
(28)
26
(30)
27
(30)
26
(26)
27
(27)
28
(29)
Giants
1-6
28
(29)
28
(27)
28
(27)
29
(30)
30
(29)
29
(29)
31
(31)
28
(31)
29
(28)
Bills
2-5
29
(28)
30
(30)
29
(28)
30
(29)
28
(27)
30
(27)
28
(27)
29
(28)
30
(30)
49ers
1-6
30
(30)
29
(29)
31
(31)
28
(25)
29
(28)
28
(28)
29
(29)
31
(30)
31
(32)
Raiders
1-5
31
(32)
31
(32)
32
(32)
32
(32)
32
(32)
31
(31)
30
(30)
32
(32)
32
(31)
Cardinals
1-6
32
(31)
32
(31)
30
(30)
31
(31)
31
(31)
32
(32)
32
(32)
30
(29)
Numbers in parentheses are the previous week's ranking.
The left-hand column is the aggregate of all rankings.
ESPN and MMQB rankings are weighted 2.5 times all others.
Other questions?
Read the True Power Rankings Methodology

Here's what the pundits we're tracking said about the Chiefs this week:

ESPN (2nd from 3rd)

Need more from: CB Kendall Fuller. According to NFL Next Gen Stats, Fuller is allowing 9 yards per target when he is the nearest defender, 10th-most among cornerbacks who have been targeted at least 30 times. The Chiefs will need his contributions as they are being attacked deep. Opponents have a 9.5 air yards per target average against the Chiefs, the fourth-highest average in the NFL.

MMQB (3rd from 4th)

The Chiefs rebounded from their loss to the Patriots in a big way. They’re going to be around all year. So big our voters put the Chiefs back ahead of those Patriots.

NFL.com (Elliot Harrison - 3rd from 3rd)

Who wants to have a morsel of box-score fun from Sunday night's shellacking of Cincy? Pretend it's 1998, when you still needed to monitor your fantasy team (which featured Tony Gonzalez as your TE and Eddie George as your RB1) by poring over the USA Today sports section. Stat talk: Kansas City ran up 551 yards of offense, an insane number against a defense with the talent level of the Bengals. Patrick Mahomes threw four touchdown passes. Kareem Hunt averaged almost 6 yards per carry and scored three times. Eight Chiefs caught passes from Mahomes, with none going over 100 yards -- that's hard to do when the quarterback chucks it for 358. Going to the other side ... K.C.'s defense might not be of the 1969 variety, but 10 points allowed is 10 points allowed. Bob Sutton's unit gave up all of 239 yards. #ChiefsKingdom

SBNation (Rebecca Toback - 3rd from 3rd)

While there’s still many questions to be answered regarding contenders and pretenders, the top teams (the Rams, Patriots, Chiefs, Saints, and Chargers) are starting to paint a clear picture of who they are this season

Sporting News (Vinnie Iyer - 4th from 4th)

Patrick Mahomes and Kareem Hunt are becoming almost impossible to stop, as they work well together to keep producing chunk plays. Credit the defense for getting scrappier and playing better complementary football in producing sacks and turnovers.

Yahoo! Sports (Frank Schwab - 2nd from 2nd)

Kareem Hunt had 141 total yards and three touchdowns in Sunday night’s blowout win. When you consider the 2017 NFL rushing champion has been relatively quiet and overshadowed in this offense, I’m not sure how anyone can stop the Chiefs.

CBS Sports (Pete Prisco - 4th from 4th)

Can they be stopped on offense? It sure doesn't look like it. That offense is unreal.

USA Today (Nate Davis - 4th from 4th)

Things that make you go, "Hmm." Kansas City has outscored its opponents by 78 points this season, yet outgained them by a mere 14 yards.

Other power rankings we noticed so far this week:

NBCSports.com (Cam Ellis — 3rd from 3rd) It is so impressive watching them gain 15, 20 yards per play like it’s second nature. There isn’t a more *fun* team to watch in football.

Bleeding Green Nation (Brandon Lee Gowton — 3rd from 3rd) Andy Reid’s team bounced back with a big win. Kansas City leads the league in points scored with 260. That’s over 37 per game. Must be nice.

Washington Post (Mark Maske — 4th from 4th) QB Patrick Mahomes and the offense kept doing their thing Sunday night against the Bengals. And the defense, for a change, was quite good. That was probably the most encouraging development of all on a good night for the Chiefs.

NESN.com (Joshua Schrock — 3rd from 3rd) Patrick Mahomes and the Chiefs rebounded from their loss to the Patriots by hammering the Cincinnati Bengals 45-10. It looks like the weather might be the only thing that can stop Andy Reid’s high-powered offense.

Mile High Report (Pete Baron — 2nd from 2nd) Does this upcoming game count as a 2nd bye week? Like the first time, I’m not all that optimistic. This team, honest to God, is Super Bowl bound. I think the Pats have to march into Arrowhead in January and beat them... and it ain’t happening. I know we love giving the Chief fans grief because they haven’t won a playoff game since the NFL moved away from leather helmets, but bringing up that sort of history when this team is clearly vastly superior to any team the Broncos might be trotting out just reeks of desperation.

Chicago Tribune (Brad Biggs — 3rd from 3rd) For all of the focus on Patrick Mahomes, running back Kareem Hunt is third in the NFL with 542 yards and has five touchdowns.


In the view of the national writers, the Los Angeles Rams remain the unanimous pick at number one in Week 8. That’s what remaining undefeated will do for you.

When we opened the power rankings live update on Tuesday morning, the Chiefs were in second place, followed by the New England Patriots. But the Chiefs were just barely in second place; the margin between the Chiefs and the Patriots was about a tenth of a point.

So when I saw that some of the other early rankings (those outside the group we’re tracking) had the Chiefs in third or fourth place, I considered it a real possibility the Chiefs and Patriots would switch places before the day was out. Instead, the Chiefs remained solidly in second, and the New Orleans Saints moved ahead of the Patriots into third place, where they had been tied with the Chiefs last week.

I was surprised there weren’t more pundits who moved the Chiefs up this week. The Bengals are, after all, a decent team — and the Chiefs walloped them. I thought it would be a stretch to see pundits move the Chiefs to first place, but I was surprised how many still have them in fourth.

The Detroit Lions had the biggest uptick this week — moving up six spots to 16th — followed by the Washington Redskins and Houston Texans, each of which gained five places. The Jacksonville Jaguars — with their third straight loss — took the biggest fall, dropping seven positions to 20th.

The biggest disagreement among the pundits this week was about the Denver Broncos. SBNation’s Rebecca Toback and CBS Sports’ Pete Prisco both decided to give the Broncos a nice bump following their 45-10 defeat of the hapless Arizona Cardinals — while USA Today’s Nate Davis wasn’t impressed at all, dropping the Broncos one spot after their blowout victory. I’ve spent time thinking about it, and I can’t decide which of these three pundits looks the most foolish.

Snark of the week

I’ve decided to pick out the best snarky comment I find about a team each week to share with you. But I’m telling you right now: any comment including the phrase “dumpster fire” will be automatically eliminated from consideration. These folks are writers. They’re going to have to do better than that to get my attention.

The inaugural snark is about the Oakland Raiders — from the MMQB’s Mitch Goldich:

Congrats to Amari Cooper, who moved up 12 spots in the Power Poll.


Join us on Wednesday, when we round up all the data from the number-crunchers, fold it in with what we learned from the pundits, and give you Arrowhead Pride True Power Rankings — the most complete view of the state of the NFL each week!