It was a week full of comebacks and some startling results. So how did it all affect the latest edition of the NFL Power Rankings? There’s a new No. 1.
Cincinnati Bengals 1-11
Last week: W, 22-6 vs NYJ
Last rank: 32nd
Recap: Off to the worst start in franchise history, head coach Zac Taylor turned back to veteran quarterback Andy Dalton as the Bengals hosted the rejuvenated New York Jets. And the nine-year signal-caller threw a first-quarter TD pass to Tyler Boyd as Cincinnati owned a 7-3 lead after 15 minutes of play. As it turned out, the Bengals’ defense was never really threatened by a Jets’ attack that had been rolling in recent weeks. Dalton finished with 243 yards through the air and the aforementioned score and Taylor’s club did not commit a turnover. The much-maligned Cincinnati defense did not allow a touchdown while Carlos Dunlap had three of the club’s four sacks.
Next Week: It’s the first of two meetings between the NFL’s Ohio teams as the Bengals head to Cleveland. A year ago, Cincinnati was swept by this divisional rival for the first time since 2002. The club fell at home, 35-20, in Week 12 and fell, 26-18, four weeks later at Cleveland. Prior to ’18, the Bengals had won seven consecutive meetings.
Draft Talk: The franchise hasn’t used a first-round pick on the quarterback position since 2003, when the club had the number one overall selection and opted for USC’s Carson Palmer. Of course, the organization still has to decide whether it’s ready to move on from Dalton. And the Bengals certainly have plenty of holes to fill elsewhere.
New York Giants 2-10
Last week: L, 31-13 vs GB
Last rank: 31st
Recap: Pat Shurmur’s team had dropped seven consecutive games since its 2-2 start and would now host a Green Bay Packers’ squad coming off an embarrassing primetime loss at San Francisco. And New York’s generous defense gave up a pair of first-quarter touchdowns and didn’t put a lot of heat on Aaron Rodgers all afternoon as James Bettcher’s unit didn’t record a sack or force a turnover. The Giants allowed 322 total yards but most of that was though the air as Rodgers riddled the New York defense for 243 yards and four touchdowns. Daniel Jones threw for one score but was picked off three times as Shurmur’s club has turned over the ball 28 times in a dozen games.
Next Week: It’s the first of two meetings in the final four weeks of 2019 between the Giants and Eagles. The teams meet on a Monday night at Philadelphia and Big Blue looks to snap a five-game losing streak to the Birds. A year ago, New York fell at home on a Thursday night, 34-13 (Week 6) and later at Philadelphia, 25-22, six weeks later.
Draft Talk: The club’s eighth consecutive loss means the Giants won’t be going to the playoffs for the third straight year. As far as the 2020 NFL Draft, general manager Dave Getttleman may want to focus on the defensive side of the ball as the club is devoid of play-makers when it comes to this unit. And the offensive line could use more help.