Here’s an interesting note from the first three weeks of the NFL season; all of the losses suffered by teams in the AFC East have been delivered by other teams in the AFC East. Of course, Lavonte David helped insure a Jets’ win in Week One, but it is interesting that the much-maligned division has been more than holding its own through three weeks, while the NFC East, often thought to be a competitive and bruising division, is turning out to be anything but. The Giants are falling apart, the Redskins aren’t far behind, the Eagles are in the first year of a two or three year rebuilding cycle, and the mediocre Cowboys appear to be the class of the division early in the season. The AFC east will be tested this week as the Patriots travel to Atlanta and the Dolphins visit New Orleans; both games could offer first out of division defeats for what has become affectionately known as the AFC Least.
On to our Power Rankings, our writers are nearly unanimous on the top two teams, with Denver and Seattle coming in at 1/2 for all of our writers except our Country Preacher. Now I do indeed love our Preacher, but I am really starting to think that his method for ranking teams consists of a dartboard, a blindfold, and a crack pipe. He ranked the Miami Dolphins #1 this week… OVER the Denver Broncos and OVER the Seattle Seahawks. If the Fins don’t beat the Saints this week, he might want to consider a sick day or two to avoid some serious heckling. Anyway, here are the Gridiron Rats Power rankings for Week Four; last week’s ranking is in [brackets].
1. Denver Broncos (3-0, 5 first place votes)  – So far the offensive line woes aren’t coming home to roost; will it last?
2. Seattle Seahawks (3-0)  – Road test against Houston serves as an early test
3. Chicago Bears (3-0)  – I’m not a Cutler fan, but loved the shoulder move
4. New Orleans Saints (3-0)  – Sean Payton’s revenge tour gets Monday night lights
5. New England Patriots (3-0)  – That’s right; they’re winning on defense
6. Miami Dolphins (3-0, 1 first place vote)  – We’ll start believing IF they beat New Orleans
7. Kansas City Chiefs (3-0)  – A visit from the Giants offers hope for a 4-0 start
8. San Francisco 49ers (1-2)  – Offensive woes now compounded by trouble in the defense
9. Houston Texans (2-1)  – Schaub needs to take better care of the ball
10. Cincinnati Bengals (2-1)  – Dramatic win over the Packers may be useful come January
11. Atlanta Falcons (1-2)  – Offense is fine, but walking wounded defense has team off to rough start
12. Indianapolis Colts (2-1)  – Richardson may well elevate this team
13. Green Bay Packers (1-2)  – Ugly loss to the Bengals with ugly play by Rodgers and a not-so-improved pass defense
14. Detroit Lions (2-1)  – Can the offense avoid mistakes against the opportunistic Bears?
15. Dallas Cowboys (2-1)  – From famine to feast for DeMarco Murray
16. Tennessee Titans (2-1)  – Jake Locker maturing before the eyes of Titans’ fans
17. Baltimore Ravens (2-1)  – Defense keeps the Ravens relevant for another week
18. St. Louis Rams (1-2)  – Will they continue to give the 49ers fits this season?
19. Carolina Panthers (1-2)  – A much needed blowout win for a team that was close to imploding
20. New York Jets (2-1)  – Geno Smith isn’t perfect, but a hell of a lot better than Sanchez
21. Philadelphia Eagles (1-2)  – The excitement lasted one half of one game, but it’s a start
22. San Diego Chargers (1-2)  – Rivers was outstanding in Week Three, but needs more from Matthews
23. Arizona Cardinals (1-2)  – At least they play the Bucs this week
24. Buffalo Bills (1-2)  – EJ Manuel wishes he was Geno Smith this week
25. Minnesota Vikings (0-3)  – Ponder is on thin ice in the land of the lakes
26. New York Giants (0-3)  – Hard to imagine playing any uglier than they did Sunday
27. Cleveland Browns (1-2)  – A spirited win after a disheartening trade; is Hoyer the new answer?
28. Pittsburgh Steelers (0-3)  – Has Mike Tomlin unleashed hell yet?
29. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (0-3)  – The Mike Glennon era begins on the Gulf Coast
30. Oakland Raiders (1-2)  – They showed life against the Broncos, but this team is a year away from competing with good teams
31. Washington Redskins (0-3)  – For any problems they have with RGIII, that is one bad defense
32. Jacksonville Jaguars (0-3)  – Let me get this right… the Jags are happy that Gabbert is back this week?