Five weeks into the season there have been plenty of surprises, both good and bad. There are several teams that are surprisingly much better or worse than I had expected, Green Bay and New Orleans come to mind. Looking at power rankings on Yahoo and CBS there are some teams that stood out to me as being overrated or underrated. First off, the top four seems locked in with NE, IND, DAL, and PIT (in that order). All three polls are the same except that CBS has IND #1 and NE #2. I can't argue with that order very much although I still think Pittsburgh would beat Dallas if they played, but Dallas is 5-0 and Pittsburgh is 4-1 so I understand.
Tennessee Titans Average rank: 5.3
Sure they're 3-1 and a really good defense (59 points allowed), but they rank 24th in the league in offense and 30th in passing. Vince Young is a leader who knows how to win but is not a good quarterback yet. He's completing an impressive 62% of his passes but is only averaging 5.8 yards per attempt and he's thrown 5 picks compared to just 3 touchdowns. The running game is a `by committee' approach with Chris Brown and LenDale White, as they both have over 50 carries so far. They average 153 yards per game on the ground (4th in the NFL), but after exploding for 282 yards in week one, they've only broke 100 yards in one other game. The opponents they've beaten this year are also a combined 4-9.
Baltimore Ravens Average rank: 9
They've only played one team that has a winning record and they've still lost two games. The defense has been the staple of this team for nearly ten years but it looks like father time is wearing them down as they rank 14th in scoring after giving up 97 points through 5 games. The Ravens won't win a ton of games giving up 20 points per game because their offense just isn't strong enough. McNair isn't the MVP he was several years ago as injuries and age have reduced him little more than a bus driver. He's averaging just less than 6 yards per pass attempt and has a QB rating just above 80. They should be 5-2 heading into a week 9 game at Pittsburgh, but the real test for this team will be weeks 12-17 when they play SD, NE, IND, SEA and Pitt.
Philadelphia Eagles Average Rank: 22.6
They're 1-3 but haven't played a team with a losing record yet; their opponents are a combined 13-6. They've still scored more points than they've allowed (84-73) and they rank in the middle of the league or better in scoring offense and defense (15th and 11th respectively). Donovan has been harassed so far with 17 sacks through four games but his TD to INT ratio is still very good at 5:1. Uncharacteristically the Eagles have been good running the ball with 126 yards per game (11th) but have struggled throwing the ball with 211 yards (18th). The schedule won't lighten up for the Eagles because the NFC East looks much better than expected through 5 weeks, but they should still be in the running for a wild card spot.
Oakland Raiders Average Rank: 22.3
Hey stop laughing, the Raiders aren't that bad this year. They're 2-2 and should be 3-1 because they were burned by the now unpopular "coaches' timeout" to freeze the kicker. Janikowski nailed a 52 yard field goal in overtime only to have it erased by a timeout and he missed the retry. Their defense has been surprisingly bad so far ranking 24th in scoring and 26th in yardage but an even bigger surprise is how good the offense has been. They rank 6th in scoring and 9th in yardage. Culpepper looks to have taken over the reins, at least until the youngster is ready, and if he is half the quarterback that he was in 2004, this should be a fun team to watch. LaMont Jordon is proving that when he's healthy, he's a good back and he'll get some help this week as Dominic Rhodes comes off his 4 game suspension. With Denver and KC struggling so far this year, the Raiders could sneak up and win 7 or 8 games.
So who do you think is overrated or underrated and are my teams way off?