Five weeks into the 2018 season and the latest edition of NFL Power Rankings at The Wife Hates Sports makes it very clear that the league’s best and most consistent overall team is the Los Angeles Rams.
The Patriots originally opened as the Super Bowl favorites but without question, the Rams have proven to be a dominant force, rattling off five straight wins to open the season. The Rams now have the shortest odds to win Super Bowl 53 (+333).
Furthermore, a deeper dive into the current Super Bowl 53 odds yields the five top contenders to be the aforementioned Rams (+333), joined by the New England Patriots (+700), Kansas City Chiefs (+750), New Orleans Saints (+1100) and Jacksonville Jaguars (+1200).
No really, we as sports fans love to hear the odds and love to see lists. Yet, so many power ranking lists are arbitrary, but at The Wife Hates Sports, there’s a secret statistical model that pieces together a point score assigned to each team, with the goal to grade out where a team should be on that day.
Whether you, the fan, agrees with it or not, well… that’s the fun part.
But how do the Super Bowl 53 odds coincide with a site’s NFL Power Rankings?
A Mainstream Peak
Many of the mainstream sites have the Rams and Chiefs – the league’s only undefeated teams – as the clear one-two punch in its Week 5 NFL Power Rankings, but as you will soon see, TWHS does not.
For example, ESPN’s Top 10 (posted below, via its Instagram feed), boasts a top five of the Rams, Chiefs, Patriots, Saints and Jaguars.
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See anything familiar?
It lists the same five top contenders as the current Super Bowl 53 odds.
In the TWHS NFL Power Rankings, the New Orleans Saints – led by record-setting QB Drew Brees – sit in second and hold a slim one-point edge over the undefeated Chiefs, while the Patriots actually land just outside the top ten.
Many will challenge that fact with expletives and goat emojis, but the fact of the matter is this: New England has yet to really get it going. Yes, the last two weeks featured two impressive wins and 76 total points, but these victories were against the Dolphins and Colts. Let’s see what the next two games bring, when the Pats host the Chiefs and travel to Chicago to take on the Bears.
Will Brady and Belichick climb the ladder? Likely so, but they’re not there yet.
Will some of these rankings spark debate? Absolutely – and that’s the point.
With that said, here’s where the TWHS rankings fall through five weeks:
KP’s NFL Power Rankings: October 10, 2018
*Stats, records and information through Week 5 of the 2018 NFL season
1. Los Angeles Rams (189 points)
The most balanced team, but will they take a hit in the pass game if Brandin Cooks and Cooper Kupp miss any time?
2. New Orleans Saints (139 points)
Drew Brees picked apart an underrated Washington defense, but can they consistently get better against the pass?
3. Kansas City Chiefs (138 points)
Pat Mahomes is a beast but don’t overlook the fact that KC’s defense is ranked in the bottom ten against both the run and the pass.
4. Chicago Bears (136 points)
The Bears are second in total defense and first against the run, allowing just 64 ypg on the ground.
5. Baltimore Ravens (126 points)
Some will say they lost to the Browns, but don’t forget Baltimore is third in total defense, allowing just 303 ypg.
6. Jacksonville Jaguars (105 points)
For the Jags to reach the next level, they’ll need healthy running backs and a more consistent Blake Bortles.
7. Cincinnati Bengals (101 points)
Winning ugly has been the theme for the Bengals in the opening month (but hey, it’s still winning).
8. Carolina Panthers (94 points)
Graham Gano’s game-winner could have been good from 67-70, but this story is even better:
— Graham Gano (@GrahamGano) October 8, 2018
9. Los Angeles Chargers (94 points)
Watch out, because Joey Bosa could be coming back soon.
10. Washington Redskins (94 points)
Monday night’s loss to the Saints was ugly, but the ‘Skins still feature a top five defense on the season.
11. New England Patriots (85 points)
Back-to-back 38-point games have the Pats charging, but let’s see how they handle the Chiefs.
12. Green Bay Packers (79 points)
The injury-plagued Packers have ten different players with at least three receptions this season.
13. Houston Texans (74 points)
Deshaun Watson has four straight 300-yard passing games and completed 75% of his throws in last Sunday’s OT win against the Cowboys.
14. Tennessee Titans (71 points)
Wasn’t this supposed to be the breakout season for Derrick Henry?
15. New York Jets (66 points)
Robby Anderson (114 targets in 2017) has just 21 targets through five games.
16. Pittsburgh Steelers (65 points)
After a blowout win over the Falcons, the question still remains: Will Le’Veon Bell play in Pittsburgh this year, or be dealt to another team?
17. Philadelphia Eagles (59 points)
Jay Ajayi (torn ACL) is out for the year, leaving the Eagles searching for running back depth.
18. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (57 points)
The unbalanced Bucs have just 278 total rushing yards as a team this season.
19. Seattle Seahawks (53 points)
We knew this wouldn’t be the same defense, but ranked in the bottom five against the run?
20. Cleveland Browns (52 points)
The usually precise Baker Mayfield has completed just 58.9% of his passes.
21. Minnesota Vikings (51 points)
Only Jared Goff has more passing yards than Kirk Cousins (1,688 yards, 11 TD, 2 INT) through five games.
22. Dallas Cowboys (50 points)
Ezekiel Elliott (93 carries, 480 yards) leads the NFL in rushing through five weeks – and where would the Cowboys be without him?
23. San Francisco 49ers (39 points)
Despite all the injuries on offense, the Niners still have managed a top five run game, averaging 136.2 ypg on the ground.
24. Detroit Lions (38 points)
Kerryon Johnson is averaging 5.7 ypc, which is fifth amongst running backs this season.
25. Miami Dolphins (37 points)
Miami’s pass defense has a league-leading ten – count ‘em – TEN interceptions.
26. Denver Broncos (36 points)
Phillip Lindsay (57 carries, 328 yards) and Royce Freeman (49 carries, 250 yards) each rank in the league’s top 20 in rushing.
27. Buffalo Bills (20 points)
With wins over the Vikings and Titans and blowout losses to the Ravens and Packers, will the real Buffalo Bills please stand up?
28. New York Giants (16 points)
Saquon Barkley is living up to the hype, nearing the 600 total yard mark through five games, with 31 receptions and five total touchdowns.
29. Indianapolis Colts (8 points)
Rookie Darius Leonard missed the last game due to injury, yet still leads the NFL in tackles (54).
30. Atlanta Falcons (6 points)
The injuries are piling up and the Falcons can’t recover from a lack of depth.
31. Oakland Raiders (-2 points)
The Raiders have just six sacks through five games, while departed star Khalil Mack has five through four games.
32. Arizona Cardinals (-20 points)
Josh Rosen made a few great throws last week, but his sub-50% completion percentage will need to improve as the season progresses.
* All stats per NFL.com
The Wife Hates Sports’ NFL Power Rankings system has a method to its madness, attempting to be different and not just rank by popularity and record. It mixes a secret formula of eight completely different categories, meshed into a points system. The categories don’t just include team results regarding record, but how each team has performed on the road, as well as incorporating some statistics on both a team’s offense and defense, too.
Reference: Sports Betting Dime