Week 8 of the NFL season has passed, and we now approach the NFL trade deadline. Some big names are reportedly on the market, and some are surprisingly left off. As the halfway point approaches, the playoff picture still isn’t too clear, but the clear bottom teams appear to already be figured out. Here’s how all 32 teams stack up going into week 9:
32. Miami Dolphins (0-7)
For about one quarter, there was some hope in Miami. Some hope that the Dolphins may actually be able to steal a game from the Pittsburgh Steelers in Pittsburgh. The Dolphins lead 14-0 after the first quarter. Then the Dolphins proceeded to give up 27 unanswered points. The tank for Tua is still on in Miami, though it wouldn’t have hurt too much to win this one, considering they own the Steelers’ first round pick in the draft this year.
31. Cincinnati Bengals (0-7)
The Bengals were no match for the Rams, even in another country. The loser of the week 16 matchup between the Dolphins and Bengals may very well finish 0-16 on the season. The next move for the Bengals should be moving some pieces at the trade deadline. A.J. Green should provide a good haul of draft picks in return for his Pro Bowl caliber services. Geno Atkins could also be moved in exchange for a good return.
30. Washington Redskins (1-7)
The Redskins’ offense is a train wreck. After putting up nine points against the Vikings on Thursday Night Football, nobody knows who the starting quarterback in the Nation’s Capital is. Dwayne Haskins still doesn’t look ready, but it could be time to get him some reps at this point. Case Keenum or Colt McCoy could put up decent stats, but the Redskins still wouldn’t win too many games. The best news for Redskins fans is that according to Ian Rapoport, Washington is now willing to deal Trent Williams. Whether or not he actually gets moved is a whole different story.
29. New York Jets (1-6)
The New York Jets are in a bad spot. Sam Darnold was mercilessly trolled by the Jaguars and there wasn’t a thing he could do about it. Darnold threw three more picks against Jacksonville, making it seven in the last two games. Le’veon Bell was stifled by the Jags defense, with nine carries for 23 yards. The defense also yielded 29 points to the Gardner Minshew led offense. The Jets should continue to pile up draft picks, and dealing Leonard Williams is a good start. Robby Anderson should be the next to go.
28. Atlanta Falcons (1-7)
Matt Schaub had an impressive statline on paper. 460 yards is not an easy thing to do against the Seattle Seahawks. But it does get easier when you throw the ball over 50 times. The Atlanta Falcons will get a bye this week, and Matt Ryan should be back in week 10. The Falcons’ hopes of the playoffs are likely dead, but this team has too much talent to be losing so many games.
27. New York Giants (2-6)
The Giants may have lost, but Daniel Jones’ performance should be a bright spot. He played very well against the Lions despite not coming away with the win, throwing for over 300 yards and four touchdowns. The defense however, is not so much of a bright spot. The Leonard Williams addition is a confusing one for the Giants, as he will be a free agent after the season. If he is not re-signed, the addition will only do more harm than good.
26. Denver Broncos (2-6)
The Denver Broncos need a lot of help. Joe Flacco called the team out after their most recent loss, stating that coach Vic Fangio was scared to go for it in the two minute drill. And now, he is set to miss a significant amount of time with a neck injury (Ain’t it interesting how that works?) Denver is believed to be selling at the trade deadline, with the most significant piece available being Chris Harris Jr. Philadelphia needs to get that deal done.
25. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (2-5)
Another Buccaneers game, another mixed bag performance from Jameis Winston. Over 300 yards, but multiple turnovers. He still has one of the best wide receiver duos in the league in Chris Godwin and Mike Evans, as well as two capable tight ends with Cameron Brate and O.J. Howard (who really doesn’t see the field), so inconsistency should not be an issue. Bruce Arians continues to stick up for him though, a positive sign for his future. If O.J. Howard is not going to be involved, Tampa Bay should seek out a trade partner.
24. Cleveland Browns (2-5)
After watching Freddie Kitchens’ Browns for seven games, it is clear that Kitchens is not an NFL head coach, if at any level. The Browns are too talented for the little things to be holding them down. If the Browns are going to commit as many penalties as they are, and continue to play undisciplined, no amount of talent will be able to help them. That includes acquiring Trent Williams from Washington or getting Damarious Randall back.
23. Pittsburgh Steelers (3-4)
Pittsburgh would have been number 32 if they would have lost to the Dolphins. Thankfully, the defense was able to figure it out, and the offense put up a good number of points. Rudolph’s early struggles should be a concern for the Steelers, and James Conner leaving early is worrisome. Despite the win, the Steelers should not be seen as contenders.
22. Chicago Bears (3-4)
Just when Bears fans think they’ve escaped, the kicking struggles have returned with a vengeance. Eddy Pineiro missed a game winning kick at the end of the game vs the Chargers, and didn’t even get one doink. Matt Nagy should take heavy criticism for this loss, as he made the decision to take a knee killing around 40 seconds of clock, rather than try to get closer for the game winning kick. And even worse, it is looking more and more like Mitch Trubisky is not the answer at starting quarterback for this team.
21. Los Angeles Chargers (3-5)
The Chargers were victorious in what could have been a potential Super Bowl matchup last year. Instead, it was the battle of the two biggest underperformers in the NFL this year. Melvin Gordon’s name continues to be in the trade rumors, but don’t expect him to be moved before the trade deadline. If the Chargers want to be in the playoffs, they must start a massive hot streak starting with this win vs Chicago.
20. Oakland Raiders (3-4)
Jon Gruden’s group of Gruden Grinders fought valiantly against a good Houston Texans team, but came up just short. With Patrick Mahomes coming back quicker than anyone could have expected, any chance of making up ground in the AFC west is quickly evaporated. The Raiders only hope is to keep winning, because if they drop too many in a row, they will drop out of the playoff picture quickly.
19. Detroit Lions (3-3-1)
By no means are the Detroit Lions a bad team. They just play in the NFC North, which features the Green Bay packers and the Minnesota Vikings. The loss of Kerryon Johnson will hurt the Lions’ offense a lot, but if Matt Stafford can play at a high level, they should be ok. Darius Slay’s name has been popping up on the trade block, but he is not a piece that should be moved. If he is traded however, Detroit should receive a large supply of quality picks.
18. Tennessee Titans (4-4)
The Ryan Tannehill experiment is off to a 2-0 start. At this rate, Marcus Mariota may become a career backup. Still, what was asked of Marcus was tough. An offensive coordinator change almost every year, and he never really had a true elite threat at receiver. For the titans, however, they will need Tannehill to win a lot more if they want to end up in the playoff picture.
17. Arizona Cardinals (3-4-1)
The Arizona Cardinals ran into a buzzsaw in the form of a returning Drew Brees. The defense was carved up by both Brees and Latavius Murray. The Cardinals look to be in position to drop two in a row, as they get the 49ers on Halloween night. As for the roster, it is an interesting mix of talneted veterans and youth. They recently acquired Kenyan Drake from Miami, and Patrick Peterson’s name repeatedly shows up in trade rumors. The Cardinals must figure out if they are buyers or sellers.
16. Jacksonville Jaguars (4-4)
No Ramsey, no problem. The Jaguars coasted to a victory this week, although it was against the Jets. Gardner Minshew is for real, and he shows it every week. The Jaguars look like they are rallying behind him, which will make the eventual decision of Foles or Minshew a very tough one for Doug Marrone. Should jacksonville, keep winning, it is not hard to see them as a playoff team.
15. Philadelphia Eagles (4-4)
The eagles bounced back in a major way. They went down to Buffalo, one of the hardest places to win in the NFL, and beat the brakes off of a pretty good Bills team. It was very encouraging to see the Eagles run the ball successfully, something they had been missing for a while. The eagles should be very active at the trade deadline, and a number one corner should be their priority. Their best bet is Chris Harris in Denver.
14. Carolina Panthers (4-3)
Kyle Allen’s Panthers were brought back down to Earth by the undefeated 49ers on Sunday. With Carolina unlikely to deal Cam Newton before the trade deadline, there is no reason not to start him when he comes back from injury. With matchups against the Packers and Saints looming large over them, the Panthers may hope that Cam is back to 100% sooner rather than later.
13. Los Angeles Rams (5-3)
The Rams stacked roster is paying off on the field. The biggest star on offense isn’t Robert Woods, or Brandin Cooks. It’s not even Todd Gurley. Cooper Kupp dominated in London with over 200 yards receiving against the Bengals. Jared Goff may be over whatever struggles he was facing in weeks prior, and if he is that is bad news for the NFC west. The Rams playing at their full potential are a scary good team. Given their willingness to trade, do not be surprised if they make a move before the trade deadline.
12. Houston Texans (5-3)
Houston may have won, but their defense suffered a significant blow. J.J. Watt suffered a torn pec, and will miss the entirety of the remaining season. This loss is significant enough to cripple the Texans’ playoff hopes, but not completely crush them. As long as Deshaun Watson is healthy, the Texans can win any game.
11. Seattle Seahawks (6-2)
Seattle was able to end off the Matt Schaub-led Atlanta Falcons on Sunday, but it was much closer than it should have been. The Seahawks are a force in the NFC west, but they are in danger of being overshadowed by both the 49ers and Rams. Seattle should wind up in the postseason, but this team will only go as far as Russell Wilson will take them.
10. Dallas Cowboys (4-3)
Dallas had a bye week this week, and should be able to get back into the win column against the Giants. All is not perfect though, as the Eagles have bounced back from getting demolished by the Cowboys in primetime. Michael Bennett is a nice addition to the Dallas pass rush, and gives them a nice trio of Lawrence, Quinn, and Bennett to get after the passer. Dallas controls their own destiny.
9. Buffalo Bills (5-2)
The Bills did not look good against the Eagles on Sunday. Josh Allen continues to turn the ball over, and that is something that Buffalo will need to control if they want to seriously contend in the AFC. The newfound run defense issue is a concerning one for a defense that looked near impenetrable early in the season. Buffalo should be in the trade market for a wide receiver.
8. Indianapolis Colts (5-2)
Jacoby Brissett is proving all of the doubters wrong every week. He led an incredible comeback on Sunday against the Denver Broncos, including evading a sack from Von Miller, which is not easy. Adam Vinatieri proved that after all these years, he is still the man to call if you need a clutch field goal. With Watt’s injury, and a loaded roster, the AFC south may very well go to the Colts, and they can contend.
7. Minnesota Vikings (6-2)
Kirk Cousins had a fantastic October. If he has a good November and December, there is no reason that the Vikings shouldn’t be considered Super Bowl contenders. The regressiion of cornerback Xavier Rhodes is a story that bears watching, however, as he is a key piece of the Vikings defense. Minnesota should look at adding another piece on defense if they can afford it.
6. Kansas City Chiefs (5-3)
Give Matt Moore credit. He was able to help the Chiefs hang with the Packers on primetime, in a game where everybody thought they would get crushed. Patrick Mahomes may be back as soon as soon as this Sunday, continuing to prove that he may not be human. Kansas City will appreciate getting their franchise quarterback back, but they will need their defense to start playing well if they want to contend in the AFC.
5. Baltimore Ravens (5-2)
The Ravens got a bye this week, giving them an extra week to prepare for the New England Patriots in their toughest test to date. This game will be very telling to their status in the AFC. They don’t have to win to prove they belong with the top dogs in the AFC, but they need to keep it close. Lamar Jackson will have to back up all the hype against arguably the best defense in the NFL.
4. Green Bay Packers (7-1)
Aaron Rodgers has brought himself to the top of the MVP conversation within the span of two games. Maybe it’s a bit of a stretch, but he has taken everybody back to the days of prime Aaron Rodgers over the last couple of weeks. The defense has regressed since week one, but you’re not going to look fantastic against the Kansas City Chiefs. The Packers are serious Super Bowl contenders.
3. San Francisco 49ers (7-0)
It is becoming hard to put into words how good these 49ers are. The defense is tremendous and Nick Bosa is receiving defensive player of the year hype. He put on a show against the Panthers, and Tevin Coleman ran all over a good Panthers defense. If Jimmy Garoppolo can limit his turnovers, there is no reason the 49ers on’t earn a first round bye in the playoffs.
2. New Orleans Saints (7-1)
They may not be undefeated, but the Saints are the best team in the NFC. Drew Brees is back in a big way, and he didn’t skip a beat against the Cardinals aside from one interception. The defense still looks great, and the Saints have great pieces across the team. Latavius Murray was a great a ddition, and when Kamara is resdy to come back, that 1-2 punch will be deadly.
1. New England Patriots (8-0)
New England is halfway there on the path to a perfect season. The defense was able to get a turnover from the Browns on three straight plays, including two fumbles from Nick Chubb. That is not easy, as Chubb rarely coughs the ball up. Although, buried beneath all those turnovers is a struggling run defense. Expect that to be put to the test by Lamar Jackson and Mark Ingram.