Updated: September 16, 2014, 3:11 PM ET

2014 NFL Power Rankings: Week 3


ESPN.com

After Seattle's Week 1 pasting of the Packers, you probably thought the defending champs were destined for a lengthy run atop our rankings.

Well, the NFL remains full of surprises.

Sunday's 30-21 loss at San Diego dropped the Seahawks to No. 2 and propelled the unbeaten Broncos -- No. 2 the past two weeks -- to the top spot. ESPN's Power Panel (a group of more than 80 writers, editors and TV personalities) bumped the Bengals up to No. 3, followed by the Eagles and Patriots.

Other teams on the upswing include the Panthers (No. 11 to No. 6) Chargers (No. 16 to No. 10), Cardinals (No. 14 to No. 9) and Bills (No. 23 to No. 12).

Is Denver's hold at No. 1 secure? Maybe not. As scheduling luck would have it, the Broncos just happen to play at Seattle in Week 3. With the winner almost guaranteed the top spot here, it's just one more reason to watch what's already a much-anticipated Super Bowl rematch.

Note: The comments below are provided by ESPN Stats & Information.

• SN: Rank 'Em | Panthers not regressing | Vegas Rankings Insider | Team Power Rankings charts since 2002

Rk(LW)TeamRec
1(2)
Denver
2-0-0
Thanks, Peyton! Julius Thomas is the first player in Broncos history with four receiving touchdowns in the first two games of the season.
2(1)
Seattle
1-1-0
The nine-point loss was Seattle's largest margin of defeat since Week 9 of 2011. Russell Wilson is 16-1 at home, but fell to 9-8 on the road in his career.
3(5)
Cincinnati
2-0-0
No A.J. Green, no problem. Green left with a toe injury and didn't make a catch for the first time when active in his career, but the Bengals handled Atlanta.
4(4)
Philadelphia
2-0-0
Darren Sproles caught all seven targets for a career-high 152 yards Monday night, including a 17-yard catch to set up the game-winning field goal. Sproles is a big reason Philly is 2-0.
5(7)
New England
1-1-0
Tom Brady won his 149th career game Sunday, passing John Elway for third most among quarterbacks. A home opener against the Raiders next could be number 150.
6(11)
Carolina
2-0-0
Carolina scored 18 unanswered points after Detroit took a 7-6 lead. Not a bad debut for Cam Newton (22-of-34 for 281 yards and a touchdown), who gets Pittsburgh next.
7(3)
San Francisco
1-1-0
Not a good way to open the building. San Francisco had won 37 straight games when leading by at least 13 points after three quarters. They head to Arizona next.
8(8)
Green Bay
1-1-0
Jordy Nelson finished with nine catches for a career-high 209 yards and a touchdown. Don Beebe in 1996 is the only Packer with more receiving yards (220) in a game.
9(14)
Arizona
2-0-0
Brace yourself: Drew Stanton has won his past three starts dating to 2010 with Detroit. He passed for nine first downs, as many as Tom Brady and Russell Wilson.
10(16)
San Diego
1-1-0
Antonio Gates posted his first three-touchdown game since Week 8 of 2005. More importantly, the Chargers had no turnovers, snapping an 11-game streak (including playoffs) for the Seahawks' defense.
11(18)
Chicago
1-1-0
Great win for Chicago. Sunday was the Bears' first victory in a game in which they trailed by at least 17 points since 2006. ("They are who we thought they were!")
12(23)
Buffalo
2-0-0
Buffalo ranks sixth in both rushing yards and rushing yards allowed per game. The Bills are 2-0 for the first time since 2011 but host the Chargers next.
13(20)
Baltimore
1-1-0
Joe Flacco was excellent against the Steelers' blitz. Flacco was 11-of-13 for 114 yards and two touchdowns when Pittsburgh committed extra pass-rushers. This week's game at Cleveland could be tricky, though.
14(22)
Houston
2-0-0
Add red zone threat to J.J. Watt's ever-growing resume. His first career catch was a touchdown Sunday against the Raiders. Now get back to defense (zero tackles).
15(10)
Indianapolis
0-2-0
A tough opening stretch has Indy 0-2, but getting back to .500 shouldn't be too tough. The Colts head to Jacksonville and host the Titans in the next two weeks.
16(6)
New Orleans
0-2-0
Why are the Saints losing? The defense and special teams have combined for a minus-34 point efficiency, worst in the first two weeks since the 2012 Chiefs (finished 2-14).
17(9)
Atlanta
1-1-0
Atlanta yielded at least 450 yards in back-to-back games for the first time since Weeks 6 and 7 of 2010. That must improve for a meaningful run at the NFC South crown.
18(13)
Detroit
1-1-0
After the duo was deadly in Week 1, Matthew Stafford was 1-of-7 for 25 yards and an interception targeting Calvin Johnson deeper than 10 yards downfield.
19(12)
Pittsburgh
1-1-0
Antonio Brown extended his streak of at least five receptions and 50 receiving yards to 18 straight games Thursday night, the longest such streak since 2002-03 (Laveranues Coles, 19 games).
20(15)
Miami
1-1-0
Still waiting on Ryan Tannehill's breakout game. His QBR hasn't reached 35.0 in a game yet, but he has a pair of 0-2 defenses next (Chiefs and Raiders).
21(21)
NY Jets
1-1-0
Some combination of Sheldon Richardson and Marty Mornhinweg called a timeout that shouldn't have been allowed and nullified a game-tying touchdown. Just another day at the office for the Jets.
22(27)
Dallas
1-1-0
Sunday was just the eighth time in Jason Garrett's head-coaching career (58 games) that Dallas has run more than passed. The Cowboys are 7-1 in those games.
23(29)
Cleveland
1-1-0
Terrence West had 90 yards from scrimmage Sunday, the first rookie running back with at least 90 yards from scrimmage in Weeks 1 and 2 since 2008 (Chris Johnson and Matt Forte).
24(19)
Tennessee
1-1-0
Delanie Walker was the first Titan with 10 catches for 140 yards and a touchdown since Drew Bennett in 2004. Other than that, not a pretty Week 2 for Tennessee.
25(28)
Washington
1-1-0
All is not lost. Kirk Cousins passed for 250 yards, two touchdowns and no interceptions Sunday. Robert Griffin III had accomplished those numbers only twice in his career.
26(17)
Minnesota
1-1-0
Why were fans calling for Teddy Bridgewater? Matt Cassel is the first quarterback since 2006 to start Weeks 1 and 2 without completing multiple attempts deeper than 10 yards downfield.
27(25)
Kansas City
0-2-0
Three touches for Jamaal Charles before an ankle injury sidelined him. Knile Davis does have four rush touchdowns in the past three games, and the Chiefs may need even more.
28(32)
St. Louis
1-1-0
Elias tells us the Rams snapped a 12-game losing streak in road openers, the longest in NFL history. Can anyone stop Austin Davis and Greg Zuerlein (four field goals)?
29(24)
Tampa Bay
0-2-0
Josh McCown had two rushing touchdowns Sunday. Since the start of 2013, McCown has as many games with multiple rushing touchdowns as Alfred Morris, Eddie Lacy and DeMarco Murray.
30(26)
NY Giants
0-2-0
Sunday was the Giants' fifth straight game dating to last season with at least four turnovers, the longest active streak.
31(30)
Jacksonville
0-2-0
Since a 17-0 halftime lead in Week 1 against the Eagles, Jacksonville has been outscored 75-10. Hosting the Colts won't make it easier on the Jaguars.
32(31)
Oakland
0-2-0
Typical rookie quarterback so far. Derek Carr's QBR against four or fewer rushers is strong (78.9, 11th in NFL). Carr's 4.2 QBR against the blitz ranks 34th of 35.

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