Nobody wants to admit these are the top 5 teams in the NFL
Updated: Oct 15, 2021
I will be the first to say that players and teams can earn their way into the spotlight. Avoiding losses, quality wins, and consistent scoring - that should get you on mainstream sports broadcasts. I believe this is why College Football has a flawed system - those teams who earn the spotlight (although boring to admit) are not always the best teams. Does anyone really believe that Oklahoma, Cincinnati, and Iowa can really beat Alabama? All of those teams are ranked higher. We fall guilty of this mindset as we rank NFL teams as well.
The numbers can say one thing, but my eyes, gut, and brain tell me these are still the top 5 teams in the NFL.
Which NFL Teams did not make the Top 5 List?
First, let's talk about the teams not on this list that quite possibly could be.
Lamar Jackson is now 4-1 with INCREDIBLE performances. If the season ended today, I would name him MVP. The Ravens may very well win that division. But ultimately, their roster falls short in may areas, and if Lamar can't be INCREDIBLE for 3-4 games straight in the playoffs, they won't win.
I love Baker. I love Chubb/Hunt. I love the Browns Defense. The Browns are a really good team. But they fall off of my Top 5 list mainly because I see at least 5 teams better than them. Is any part of their team Top 5? I would say the run game is obviously #1 but is that enough? They have had a couple opportunities to change my mind and have come up just short.
Aaron Rodgers is a baaaad man. Davante Adams may be even better. After a dismal offseason and a hiccup in Week 1, the Packers have been nearly perfect, winning four straight. They don't make my Top 5 for two main reasons. First, that messy offseason got in the way of possibly recruiting some helpful free agents that would have made a difference down the stretch. Second, relying so heavily on one receiver has rarely gone well in the postseason. Playoff teams find a way to minimize that threat. When Aaron Rodgers won his Super Bowl, he completed passes to 8 different receivers (none of them were named Davante Adams). Can he consistently utilize other weapons enough to beat great teams if Adams was shut off? I am not really impressed by any of Green Bay's wins thus far, as opponents total a record of 10-15. For now, they are Top 10, but not Top 5.
If I had the time to watch every Cardinals game by itself after Red Zone, I would gladly do so. You just never know what Kyler Murray is going to do. When the ball is in the air, you know Deandre Hopkins is working harder than anyone else to get to it. Their whole receiving group has been amazing. The Cardinals are playing fun-to-watch football. But. Do I think they can do this for four more months in the hardest division and conference in the league? No, I don't. They should have lost to Minnesota. Their wins against Jacksonville and San Francisco don't mean much to me. Beating the Rams was an absolute shock, and that gets them on this list, but I highly, highly doubt they get Sean McVay twice.
Justin Herbert is all that and a bag of chips. Another MVP candidate, he is Top 5 in most passing stats. He is a proven winner, capping off quality wins with 4th quarter drives. The Chargers defense is also incredible. Before Sunday, their defense had only given up a max of 24 points -and that was to Patrick Mahomes. They struggled against the Browns, but Herbert found a way to win. If this was a Top 6 list, the Chargers would be on it.
What are the Top 5 NFL teams going into Week 5 of the 2021 season?
5. Kansas City Chiefs
Yea, I said it. The 2-3 Chiefs are better than the teams I listed above for two main reasons: Super Bowl 54 & Super Bowl 55. Of course, what I mean by this is that the Chiefs still have Andy Reid, Patrick Mahomes -and most of his weapons. While the defense has been less impressive than we have seen in recent years, I believe they have the staff and the team capital to fix that. Why are they 2-3? Simple. Turnovers. The Chiefs LEAD THE LEAGUE in turnovers (tied with Jacksonville). I watch the games. Many of these turnovers have been flukes. Through receivers' hands, batted balls at the line, fumbles - does anyone think the Chiefs' receivers will continue to drop and deflect passes to defenders as often as they have been? Me neither. Nobody likes what-ifs, but if just half of those turnovers would have instead led to scoring drives, the Chiefs would be 5-0 and lead the league in scoring (they are still 5th). Get this: in five games, the Chiefs have only punted eight times. They have scored 20 touchdowns, 5 field goals, turned the ball over 11 times, and only punted 8 times. These champions are going to stop turning the ball over. Patrick Mahomes will right the ship and continue to prove that he is the best QB in today's NFL. I am still worried about the defense, but more times than not, Mahomes will make up for it.