Updated: October 21, 2014, 4:00 PM ET
2014 NFL Power Rankings: Week 8
Thanks to impressive hot streaks, a handful of 5-2 teams have made significant headway in our hierarchy.
The Colts, winners of five straight, jumped from No. 8 to No. 4. The Packers, riding four straight victories, just missed the top five, rising from No. 9 to No. 6. The Ravens (No. 9) cracked the top 10 for only the second time this season, while the Patriots gained two spots to No. 8.
It wasn't all good news for the 5-2 contingent, as ESPN's Power Panel (a group of more than 80 writers, editors and TV personalities) punished San Diego for losing at home to Kansas City. The Chargers sit at No. 7 after boasting the No. 2 ranking a week ago.
Denver is No. 1 for the second straight week, while Dallas moved to the No. 2 spot, its best rank of the season. The biggest loser of the week was slumping Seattle, which plummeted from No. 5 to No. 11 after its record fell to 3-3.
Note: The comments below are provided by ESPN Stats & Information.
• SN: Rank 'Em | Why Seahawks have slipped | Vegas Rankings | Team Power Rankings charts since 2002
|Peyton Manning has the passing TD record and Demaryius Thomas has been on fire since the bye week (174 yards per game). And Von Miller leads the NFL with eight sacks.|
|DeMarco Murray has an NFL-record seven straight 100-yard rushing games to start the season and the Cowboys get a home game against a Brian Orakpo-less Redskins defense. Look out.|
|Seven of the Eagles' 21 touchdowns have come on defense or special teams (33 percent). No other team has more than 20 percent of its touchdowns on defense and special teams.|
|Just punt the ball on third down against the Colts. Opponents have converted just 8 of 51 third-down tries during the Colts' five-game winning streak and opposing quarterbacks have a Total QBR of 3 on third down.|
|The Cardinals start 5-1 or better for the first time since 1976. QB Carson Palmer is 10-2 in his past 12 starts.|
|Aaron Rodgers is up to four straight games with at least three TD passes and no INTs, tying the longest streak in NFL history (Tom Brady, 2007). He faces a Saints defense that ranks 29th in defensive efficiency.|
|Philip Rivers will take his No. 2-ranked QBR and 5-2 record into Denver to face Peyton Manning, who boasts the No. 1 QBR and a 5-1 record.|
|Tom Brady has the highest completion percentage (68 percent) and most passing touchdowns (5) on throws 15 or more yards downfield since the start of Week 5. Brady is 3-0 in his career against the Bears with a QBR of 90 in his past two starts against them.|
|When the Ravens win, they win big. Their points margin per game is up to plus-12.7 after beating the Falcons by 22, the highest margin in the NFL.|
|The Lions' defense has added 52 net points compared to an average defense. No other defense has added more than 20 this season. They get a Falcons team that can't run and struggles to protect its QB.|
|The Seahawks pressured opposing quarterbacks on an NFL-high 33 percent of dropbacks in 2013. They rank last at 17 percent in 2014.|
|Injuries depleted a 49ers defense that allowed 42 points to the Broncos, tied for most in a game during the Jim Harbaugh era.|
|It can't get much worse than a 27-0 Week 7 loss to the Colts that featured eight straight drives without a first down to start the game and a third-down efficiency in the single digits (8 percent).|
|Andy Reid's teams improved to 14-2 in the first game after a bye. The Chiefs don't get another bye but they do host the Rams (2-4) and Jets (1-6) the next two weeks.|
|Two players have at least 100 yards from scrimmage in every game this season. Dallas' DeMarco Murray is one; Pittsburgh's Le'Veon Bell is the other.|
|Kyle Orton has two game-winning drives in his three starts this season but running backs Fred Jackson and C.J. Spiller will miss time with injuries.|
|The Panthers have allowed an NFL-high 24 touchdowns in 2014, already three more than their NFL-low 21 in all of last season.|
|The two best QBR games of Ryan Tannehill's career have come in his past three games. He faces a Jaguars team in Week 8 that has allowed the most passing yards this season.|
|The Bears have been better on the road, but New England QB Tom Brady is 86-13 at home as a starter and is heating up.|
|What looked like an easy path to 6-2 was interrupted by the Jaguars' first win of the season. The Browns face Oakland on Sunday and will need to get back on track to avoid losing to 0-6 teams in back-to-back weeks.|
|The Giants dropped their third straight game to the Cowboys but their young receivers are emerging. Rueben Randle and Odell Beckham Jr. have combined for 17 receptions, 194 yards and two TDs the past two games.|
|The Saints are 10-0 at home and 3-9 on the road since the start of 2013. They will have their hands full at home against Aaron Rodgers and the Packers Sunday night.|
|The Texans' win probability was 88 percent when they were up 13-3 with 1:46 left in the second quarter Monday night against the Steelers. Just 1:32 later, Houston trailed 24-13 with a 14 percent chance to win.|
|QB Austin Davis posted the highest completion percentage against a defending Super Bowl champion in a win over the Seahawks. Robert Quinn recorded his first sack of the season, helping the Rams quadruple their season sack total (four).|
|Matt Ryan was constantly under pressure against the Ravens Sunday and just lost his starting center for the year. It's a bad time to host the NFL's most efficient defense (Detroit).|
|Colt McCoy will get his first start with the Redskins. But Brian Orakpo may have played his last snap with the team.|
|After posting a Total QBR of 86 in his first career start, Teddy Bridgewater has a Total QBR of 6 in his past two games. That's the lowest QBR in the NFL in that span.|
|Good news: The Titans forced Redskins QB Kirk Cousins to the bench Sunday. Bad news: They made Colt McCoy look like a Pro Bowl passer in his first extended game action since Week 16 of 2012.|
|The Jets held their own against the Patriots and traded for Percy Harvin to help improve their 4.8 yards per play average (31st in NFL).|
|The Buccaneers have been outscored by 96 points in the first half of games, the worst margin in the NFL.|
|Good news: The Jaguars won a game. Bad news: Blake Bortles' Total QBR was 9, the lowest for a quarterback in a win since Cincy's Andy Dalton posted a 4 in Week 11 of 2013 against the Browns.|
|The Raiders are 0-6 for the first time since 1962. Their 12-game losing streak is the second-longest in franchise history. They rank 30th in offensive efficiency and 28th in defensive efficiency.|