Power rankings revisited: Week 4

October, 4, 2010
10/04/10
12:00
PM ET
Good luck finding a consensus No. 1 team in the NFL heading into Week 5.

Three of the six highest-ranked teams from last week -- top-ranked Pittsburgh, third-ranked Indianapolis and sixth-ranked Chicago -- lost Sunday. The three winners among the six highest-ranked teams prevailed by a combined six points against teams ranked 25th, 29th and 31st last week.

ESPN.com's NFL Power Rankings come out Tuesday based on voting from me, John Clayton, Paul Kuharsky and James Walker (the chart shows how we voted last week, with red lettering for teams that lost in Week 4).

New Orleans has been No. 1 on my ballot every week since the first offseason rankings ran in April. The Saints will probably stay there even though they barely beat Carolina.

Pittsburgh, anyone? The Steelers lost to Baltimore, but they have allowed only 50 points and they'll get Ben Roethlisberger back following a Week 5 bye.

The reckoning: Seven games featured lower-ranked teams beating higher-ranked teams:
  • (8) Baltimore 17, (1) Pittsburgh 14: The team with the best quarterback won the game. At least the Steelers get Roethlisberger back after their bye.
  • (26) Jacksonville 31, (3) Indianapolis 28: The Colts are 2-2 for the second time in three seasons. They finished 12-4 the last time (2008).
  • (24) New York Giants 17, (6) Chicago 3: The Bears are headed for their third road game in four weeks. Pass protection is always tougher away from home.
  • (30) Cleveland 23, (12) Cincinnati 20: Terrell Owens became the oldest receiver to reach 200 yards in a game, breaking the record James Lofton set in 1991. But the Bengals' offense hasn't run the ball well enough.
  • (23) Denver 26, (13) Tennessee 20: Time to put Kyle Orton on the weekly MVP Watch? It's looking that way.
  • (21) Washington 17, (14) Philadelphia 12: Trading away Donovan McNabb and losing Michael Vick to injury left the Eagles with the quarterback they wanted all along. Strange.
  • (27) St. Louis 20, (19) Seattle 3: The Rams are seeking their first three-game winning streak in a season since enjoying two in 2006.
Still to play: "Monday Night Football" featuring New England at Miami.

My early favorite for the No. 1 spot: New Orleans, my top team from a week ago and as good a choice as any.

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