14. Miami Dolphins (+1)
Tua is great, but I mean he is no Nik Needham or Andrew Van Ginkel, those are the real stars of the Miami Dolphins. Honestly, I’m only partially kidding.
But if you have kept up with these power rankings all year, you know that I have been preaching how the only thing that matters this season is to make sure that Tua is healthy and ready to take a leap in Year 2 with an even better roster. Well, so far so good and it looks like Miami is going to be playoff-bound this year.
This team could set themselves up to be incredibly dangerous over the next 12 months.
13. L.A. Rams (+1)
I think the Rams win was more about the utter collapse of Russell Wilson and the Seattle Seahawks, but give credit where credit is due. The Rams defense was absolutely suffocating against the pass and the Seahawks weren’t healthy/talented enough to keep their running game involved all day.
Suddenly the Rams, Cardinals, and Seahawks all have the same record and it is anyone’s guess which team should be considered the favorite in that division. Right now I think the Rams have the best defense of that group and an offense that isn’t making many mistakes right now.
We will have to see how the loss of Andrew Whitworth impacts this team, but if they can overcome that then the Rams are quietly real threats again.