Whether it is a professional, college, or high school basketball game, walk into any gym during the warm-ups and you will undoubtedly hear hip-hop music. The relationship between hip-hop and sports has been present for years. From the days of NWA sporting Raiders gear on their rise to fame to Allen Iverson having Jadakiss appear […]Continue reading
It sucks when your team is inching closer to being part of the 5 Worst NFL Teams as Week Five is closing in. Thanks, Minnesota, close to being part of the five worst teams are you kidding me? What happened to that vaunted Mike Zimmer defense? Better get it right in Philly, or I cant save you next week for being in the five down, the five worst NFL teams oh my! I need a drink.
Ah yes, it’s that time of the week for 5 Up 5 Down: The five best and five worst teams in the NFL. We are Unafraid to piss you off by adding clubs who probably don’t belong in the Top 5. Sorry, Jacksonville at least your team doesn’t stink right now! Week 5 is here as the Colts and Patriots kick things off tonight. As always, There are some movers and shakers in our rankings, but we also have the Bills and Cardinals who are staples at being part of the Worst 5 in the NFL. What did we learn in Week 4? The Titans have a head coach with brass balls, seeing Quarterbacks with 50 or 60 passes and 400 yards is becoming a typical thing, Earl Thomas has a unique way of saying goodbye, Patrick Mahomes II is a star, and the Rams are the ultimate show in the NFL.
5 UP: The Five Best NFL Teams
1. LOS ANGELES RAMS (4-0) Last Week: 1st
No surprise here these Rams could overtake, “The Greatest Show on Turf” soon with the numbers they are putting up. I think the Rams just scored another touchdown against the Vikings while you were reading this. My question was, could Jared Goff take the next step? He has climbed over that step and is now atop the mountain. In my mind, Jared joined the elite in the NFL as witnessed by these picture-perfect passes vs. a shell-shocked Vikings defense. Goff tossed a perfect game (158.3 Rating) and has amassed some fantastic numbers so far this year (72.4 % 1,406 Yards 11 Td’s just 2 INT’s with a stunning 127.3 OBR). The Los Angeles Rams are the best team in football right now, but they are not as complete as I thought they were.
The defense has real issues at the LB position, and the secondary got torched by Kirk Cousins. The Rams are number one in our 5 Up due to the perfect record, high octane offense and an impressive plus 73 point differential. What is scary is they can be much better than this. A battle with division rivals, the Seattle Seahawks (2-2) on Sunday afternoon in the Emerald City is next. Las Vegas has the Rams at 7.5 favorites, and the all-time series stands at 23-17 for Seattle (they split both games last year). For the Rams, this kicks off three straight weeks on the road against some stiffer defenses (Seahawks, Broncos, and 49ers), but I fully expect them to win all of these game. Congrats Rams, two straight weeks atop our five up rankings.
2. KANSAS CITY CHIEFS (4-0) Last Week: 2nd
We wanted to see Patrick Mahomes II (1,200 Yards, 14 Touchdowns, 126.5 QBR, with zero INT’s) get tested and he did in Denver on Monday night. I’m going to call him “Kid Dynamite,” found a way to get his 2nd win in the Mile High City (won last year in his first start as a Pro). The Broncos had some pressure on Patrick who once again used his feet to buy time to make big plays. He showed us some rookie throws which were fortunately not intercepted, but when the team needed him in the 2nd half, he delivered. This kid has that Brett Favre quality with improvising ability like changing hands to make a key play. He is pure excitement at the highest level becoming my favorite QB to watch in the NFL.
The Chiefs defense which has struggled a lot this year (ranked 32nd coming into the match-up) made some big plays as well. That interception by Eric Murray was a thing of beauty. An aspect that the “D” has done well all year is making some key stops on third down. They prevented another Keenum miracle at the end of the game to keep the record perfect. K.C. will have its toughest test of the year so far as the Jacksonville Jaguars (3-1) come to town. The Chiefs are 3 point favorites, but the Jags lead the all-time series six games to five.
3. TENNESSEE TITANS (3-1) Last Week: Unranked
I had to bump Jacksonville out of our Top 5 this week since they won ugly on Sunday (plus the Titans beat them). A team that won me over for having the gutsiest coach in the NFL are the Tennessee Titans. What a dramatic call against the Eagles to go for the win and sidestep the tie. A huge 4th down conversion with game-tying FG in reach. Thank you, Mike Vrabel we hate ties! That win vs. the defending Super Bowl Champs is one that builds team unity, confidence and a season of epic success. You don’t believe me watch this postgame speech by my new favorite Head Coach. Oh, by the way, Marcus Mariota is growing into an amazing leader, and we might have also seen the birth as well of an elite wide receiver, in Corey Davis.
Tennesee is quickly becoming a team that many around the NFL don’t want to face. The Defense is playing great, and a dramatic gutsy overtime victory versus Philly is why the Titans hold the third position in our 5 Up rankings. The Titans will travel to Buffalo (1-3) to battle the Bills. Tennessee is 3 point favorites to get the road win, and they lead the all-time series 28-17. One can never forget the Music City Miracle between these two teams in 2000 one of the great endings of all-time.
4. CHICAGO BEARS (3-1) Last Week: Unranked
So I am mixing it up in my five up. This team deserves a chance to be here since they should be (4-0) right now. Mitch Trubisky had a career day throwing for six touchdowns and the Bears receiving core (Robinson, White (amazing at blocking), Gabriel, and Miller) is improving right before our eyes. Some things the Bears need to do better is run blocking and running the ball. Neither Howard or Cohen have been consistent and with a young QB that is still developing that needs to improve. I like how Matt Nagy goes after it very aggressive, similar to Sean McVay.
The biggest monster of the midway is Khalil Mack. He is the first player since Robert Mathis (2005) to record a sack and force a fumble in four straight games. It’s incredible to watch the rest of the defense pick up its energy level and try to emulate the play of the defensive MVP of the league right now. Chicago Bears fans should be very excited with a young team on the rise, and they will get a week off to enjoy it and root against the NFC North rivals.
5. NEW ORLEANS SAINTS (3-1) Last Week: Unranked
It’s all about the spectacular Alvin Kamara who created history on Sunday. He was a monster last week, and he can beat you in so many ways. The Saints offense keeps getting more creative. Sean Payton might be the best play-caller in the business. Drew Brees is on the verge of becoming the all-time leading passer in NFL history. We don’t talk enough about him, but we are watching one of the all-time greats continue to play at a very high level.
If the defense can get its act together (allowing 30 points a game), then this team could represent the NFC in Atlanta for Super Bowl 53. The Saints battle the Redskins on Monday Night at home and are currently 7 point favorites. Washington leads the all-time series 17-9, but the Saints beat the Skins last year in OT, 34-31.
Closing in or falling out of our top 5 this week: Honorable Mention
Miami Dolphins (3-1), Cincinnati Bengals (3-1), Jacksonville Jaguars (3-1), Baltimore Ravens (3-1), Philadelphia Eagles (2-2).
5 DOWN: The Five worst NFL teams
28. HOUSTON TEXANS (1-3) Last Week: Unranked
The Houston Texans should send Indianapolis Colts Head Coach Frank Reich a thank you card. Thanks to a horrible decision to go for it in OT on their side of the field, the Texans were able to end a horrific 9 game losing streak. DeShaun Watson played well (375 Yards 2 touchdowns) despite being sacked seven times and hurried on numerous occasions. Like many offensive lines in the NFL (Vikings, Cardinals, Bills) the Houston Texans Big Boys up front stink right now! I realize that Patrick Mahomes II is the new fancy toy to drool over but watching DeShaun versus the Colts, you know he is going to be a Super Star.
The defense needs to get its act together. When you have Watt, Clowney, and Whitney things shouldn’t be this poor (every game they have allowed 20 or more points). A Battle of Texas this Sunday Night as the Cowboys (2-2) come to town. Houston is favored by three and a half points, but the Cowboys lead the all-time series three games to one. I’m going to go on a limb to say; the Texans will not be part of the five worst NFL teams next week.
29. N.Y. JETS (1-3) Last Week: Unranked
Well after week one, New York Jet fans were thinking Super Bowl. Okay maybe that is a little much but a road win in Detroit by a ton of points this might be a 9 or 10 win season. Nope, rookie quarterback falls back down to Earth, but it’s not all his fault. Sam Darnold has been okay, but the offense is so intricate without any stars that things need to be simplified quicky. The bigger issue might be developing on the other side of scrimmage.
The defense is holding a players-only meeting to talk about eliminating miscommunications. The Jets are making way too many mistakes, and this is squarely on Todd Bowles shoulders. An ominous sign for a Head Coach who is already on the hot seat. New York will welcome the Denver Broncos to MetLife Stadium. The Jets will be two-point favorites, but Denver leads the all-time series 20-15-1. How long will the J-E-T-S be part of the five worst NFL teams, this week will be a true indicator.
30. OAKLAND RAIDERS (1-3) Last Week: 30th
The Raiders are fortunate to have won on Sunday against Baker Mayfield and the Cleveland Browns. They came within an inch of being 0-4. In a must win, the offense got it done. Derek Carr put up huge numbers (437 yards 4 TD’s 2 INTS), and Jared Cook is becoming an unstoppable weapon. The offense has been putting up big numbers, but the problem is on the other side of the ball.
While Khalil Mack is doing things we haven’t seen since 2005 in Chicago, The Raiders defense can’t stop the run, pass, or opposing teams from scoring. Only Tampa Bay has given up more points. One shining star has been the play of rookie Maurice Hurst who has shown on tape over and over. Oakland’s defense needs only to be average for this sinking ship to float again. In four games though that defense looks like it will keep the Silver and Black in the five worst teams in the NFL. The Raiders will play what seems to be a home game in LA versus the Chargers (2-2). San Diego will be 6 point favorites, but the Raiders lead the series 63-52-1.
31. BUFFALO BILLS (1-3) Last Week: 28th
After shocking the world with a huge upset the week before in Minnesota, the Bills true colors came out as they got embarrassed 22-0 to the Packers at Lambeau. Josh Allen, as our George Wrighster has pointed out on many occasions, was very inaccurate on Sunday. He looked like a deer in headlights thanks to an offensive line that allowed seven sacks. LeSean McCoy returned and ran for a paltry 24 yards. The Buffalo Bills showed us all at Lambeau field why they might be picking first in the 2019 NFL Draft. An awful football team who will use this year to gain experience. Hopefully, Josh Allen’s confidence won’t be destroyed.
The Bills will always be part of the 5 worst NFL teams here in 2018-2019. Arizona is somehow below them right now in our rankings, but I wouldn’t be surprised to see the Cards overtake Buffalo at some point this year. The Good news for the Bills is they are home this Sunday, but the bad news is it’s against the red-hot Tennessee Titans. Hey, at least the Buffalo Wings are really good, and the Sabres drop the puck this week.
32. ARIZONA CARDINALS (0-4) Last Week: 32nd
The Cards look to be a staple in the 5 worst NFL teams. Another week and another poor outing by the Cardinals offense. In four weeks of play, this team has put up an NFL worst 37 points. I am guessing soon the defense might take out some anger on that offense in practice. The Cardinals have shown some fight the last two weeks, but 0-4 is pathetic. Josh Rosen did provide a glimmer of hope (180 Yards 1 TD’s no interceptions), but this offense is just brutal. Please set Larry Fitzgerald free. He deserves a chance to finish his career with something better than this. What is going on with running back David Johnson? Fantasy owners are going crazy!
The Cardinals travel to San Francisco to battle division foes the (1-3) 49ers. Niners are 4 point favorites at home and lead the all-time series 29-24, but the Cards have won the last six match-ups.
Teams that are Knocking on futilities door:
San Francisco 49ers (1-3), N.Y. Giants (1-3), Detroit Lions (1-3), Minnesota Vikings (1-2-1), Pittsburgh Steelers (1-2-1)
Come back next Thursday for Five Up Five Down, The five best NFL Teams and the five worst NFL Teams for Week 6.
Mistakes happen, its part of life. What the Oakland Raiders did last week was unforgivable. I scratched my head wondering what the hell the Oakland Raiders were thinking when trading arguably the best defensive player in football. Money? They could have found it. Raiders Head Coach Jon Gruden said, “He (Khalil Mack) didn’t want to be here.” Really? I never heard that from him, and his teammates loved him. Maybe it was bloated salary to leave the cushy booth and that of a regressing QB the reason you dealt him to Chicago. Mack should have been a HOFer in Silver and Black from start to finish of his career sort of like Howie Long.
What did you get for the Ferrari on defense that you sent to the Windy City? Two first-round picks. Seems fair, but it’s not since it’s a lottery when drafting – ask the Vikings in 2005 how that worked out for them when they traded Randy Moss and ended up with Erasmus James and Troy Williamson. That was a disaster, and this trade will be as well. I hear you Raider fans; he wanted too much money. The price to field the best defensive player needed to be accounted for. His play (Mack) on Sunday Night against the Packers, reminded me of Lawrence Taylor while watching Derek Carr versus the Rams, reminded me of his older brother. That’s not good.
You don’t trade the best player at his position unless you like to see fans, wins, and a pink slip comes to your door. Hey Coach Gruden, I still like AOL but the game is different today, and you just made a colossal mistake. Al Davis wouldn’t have moved Mr. Mack. The return is a wait and see, and Raider fans will hope they end up with someone 75% of the value of Khalil Mack.
I write this as a signal to those in the LA Angels of Anaheim, California front office who might be reading this. Maybe the Angels should trade Mike Trout? Um, NO! NEVER! Money is money, Do whatever it takes to keep him in town and build the team to match his abilities. The team added Ohtani last year – maybe get some stud pitching this offseason. You will never win trading Mike Trout away. I think they know that even though bored baseball writers/tv shows continue to propose the idea. It’s lunacy! Khalil Mack will wreck opposing teams offensive lines while cool Coach Gruden counts his money and plays Raiders historic movies (wonder if he used a projector for that?). I like Gruden and hope Derek Carr finds himself, but trading Khalil Mack was stupid. Von Miller, who is a pretty good LB as well, called him “untradeable!”
I would have moved Carr to have kept Mack, and yes I realize you don’t win without a QB. Khalil Mack will be a Hall of Famer and Derek Carr will not. Hey, Angels front office – make sure you offer Mike Trout a lifetime contract because you will never get back equal value. It’s a losing proposition. Just ask the Bears how nice it is to see the sales of Mack jerseys skyrocket to the top. Build around the superstars not trade it away! Watch the Raiders this year – they traded away an Aston Martin Valkyrie for a Coach who hasn’t been in the league for 10 years and a QB resembling a beat-up Tesla that has lost confidence in throwing the football.
It’s the Oakland Raiders commitment to chaos!
Well, well, well, what do we have here. The Eagles won ugly, Cowboys game didn’t end well… for them, the Lions reality check has started, Bills lost, 49ers continue their run to the playoffs, and the AFC South is still weak. Don’t be mad at me… Facts are Facts!
The Aluminum Foil Curtain
The Steelers defense is not what it was. They are giving up more rushing yards than usual and were embarrassed against Baltimore. Big Ben is a good quarterback but without a defense to clean up his mistakes I’m afraid Pittsburgh is no longer a Superbowl contender. Roethlisberger is a 2 time Superbowl winning QB, but he can hardly carry the team with his arm. Unless they find a fountain of youth, the Steelers are going to have a tough time getting into the playoffs this year.
Yea… So… Uh… About the Raiders!
Remember last week I said the Raiders would make the playoffs. That’s probably out the window now. Kyle Boller is my guy and I’ve known him since high school, but I don’t think he can lead the Raiders in the same fashion as Jason Campbell. All you Raiders fans thinking that Terrell Pryor will be Cam Newton part 2, I got some ocean from property in Wyoming to sell you too. Darren Mc Fadden has emerged as one of the top backs in the league. The defense is playing great, but without a good QB not even the ghost of Al Davis can save them.
Is it 2000 or 2011?
The Ravens defense is playing lights out right now. They are fast, physical, rough, tough, and nasty! This defense looks like it has the makings to be even better than the 2000 Superbowl winning team. Haloti Ngata (Go Ducks!) is the engine that makes this aging defense go. I’m not sure what is in the water in Baltimore but Ray Lewis and Ed Reed are 100 years old and still playing great. Ray Fried Rice went over 100 yards for the 25th time in his short career which makes him tops in the league during that time. This running game plus this defense are making the Ravens frontrunner’s in the AFC. If Flacco can manage the game, and make the occasional big play, you could be looking at one of the teams to play in the AFC Championship game.
The Green Bay Packers are scary. Normally teams this good you say, “if they can stay healthy”, but not the Packers, they won the Superbowl without some of their best players. There’s nothing to say about them good or bad they blew out the Rams.
It’s gotta be the coach
What a difference a year makes. Jim Harbaugh has Alex Smith looking like the player the 49ers expected to get when they spent a 1st round pick on him. San Fran is running the ball well, playing good/tough defense, and making plays on special teams. As a fan of the game of football I really appreciate watching good football. The 49ers are impressive right now, but the jury is still out. Their potential and growth will be judged as the season grows longer.
The Cowboys will start this segment. The good news for Dallas fans is Tony Romo did not throw the game away. The bad news is he didn’t win the game either. The Cowboys defense forced Tom Brady into mistakes and stoned the Patriots high powered offense, which is more good news. The defense only lasted 58 minutes and surrendered the game winning TD, which obviously is the bad news.
The New Orleans Saints head coach Sean Payton broke his leg and tore a ligament and could not finish the game. They proceeded not to “Win one for the Gipper”, and lost a divisional game to the Bucs. Obvious bad news. You are probably wondering where the silver lining is. The good news is next week they play the Colts and advance to 5-2.
Weakest division update
AFC South… 0-3… Still the weakest division. Jaguars, Texans, and Colts all had a rough Sunday.
Power Rankings will be out on Wed.
The much maligned Patriots defense actually showed up when it mattered this week. It was about 3:30 on the clock and they had to force a three and out to give Tom Brady a chance to win the game. The Pats defense got the stop and Brady took his team down and scored without a hiccup.
I don’t know why I am mentioning the Colts for the second straight week. Call me crazy, but for some reason I can’t see them going 0-16.
Just when you started to believe the Redskins were for real Rex Grossman had a flashback to his days in Chicago. If he doesn’t get this under control quick there will be a permanent John Beck sighting.
The NFC East is the hardest division to pick a winner. The Individuals (Eagles) are still down even after a victory, but will come off their Bye and string together a bunch of wins. The Cowboys have the talent to beat anyone, but they rarely play four quarters. The Redskins, at the end of the day, just don’t have it.
The Cincinnati Bengals could have a promising future with the Dalton-to-Green QB/WR combo.
The Detroit Dougies (Lions) have started their “reality check” I predicted. They just lost to the 49ers and the trend will continue this week when the Falcons come to town.
Too many injuries to key players for the Houston Texans right now. Unless the Titans lose a few games this season will be like every other, no playoffs.
Ladies and Gentleman… Those are the facts!
The Titans did not lose this week. They didn’t play either.
This weekend of football is EXACTLY why I don’t and would never bet on sports (also I don’t wanna be Pete Rose’d). NFL games are one of the most unpredictable things, but everyone tries to predict them. Every week there are no shortage of office pools, fantasy leagues, and sports books taking bets. This week on paper looked like it would have a few good games, Giants v. Saints, Ravens v. Vikings, and a few locks like Eagles v. Raiders and Bills v. Jets, but “That’s why they play the game”.