Week 7 NFL Power Rankings

NFL Power Rankings: Week 7

Week 7 NFL Power RankingsWeek six is in the books, and we saw another great week of action! There were plenty of upsets and close games to be had, and there is no longer an undefeated team left in the NFL. The Saints look like they can make a run at the postseason, the Jets gave the Patriots all they wanted, and Vikings might be the team to beat in the NFC North even with Case Keenum at QB. This week also had a sour note to it for all football fans as Packers QB Aaron Rodgers broke his collarbone. No matter who you root for, the NFL product isn’t better when it loses players like Rodgers, Odell Beckham, and David Johnson. Let’s get into how the NFL Power rankings shake out after Week 7.

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Kansas City Chiefs

Power Ranking: 1 

  • Previous Week: 1
  • Record:
  • Week 6 result:
  • Week 7: at Oakland Raiders

I can’t knock the Chiefs out of the top spot with just one loss. They’ve been fantastic all season, and even though the offense sputtered through a good chunk of the game, they get a mulligan. It’s a little weird that it was the Steelers that dealt Kansas City their first loss after they got smacked by Jacksonville in Week 5. The Chiefs defense continues to play well even without Eric Berry. The offense could probably stand to get Kareem Hunt more touches. They also could use a wide receiver to step up aside from Tyreek Hill. The concerns of Hill being able to be a #1 option in the offense seem well founded right now. QB Alex Smith has been excellent, but there were a few plays he’d want back after this game. He won’t have time to dwell on it as the Chiefs travel to Oakland for Thursday night football.

Philadelphia Eagles

Power Ranking: 2

  • Previous Week: 3
  • Record: 5-1
  • Week 6 result: Win versus Carolina Panthers, 28-23
  • Week 7: versus Washington Redskins

Carson Wentz 1The Eagles are for real. The only reason they’re not in the number one spot is that the Chiefs beat them head to head. QB Carson Wentz left some plays on the field Thursday night that he had to be kicking himself when he watched the film. Still, it was a big win in a tough spot on the road and on a short week. WRs Alshon Jeffery and Nelson Agholor continue to get the job done. Special credit has to go to Agholor for resurrecting his career after a tough start. The Philly defense harrassed QB Cam Newton all night and forced him to throw three interceptions. CB Ronald Darby is going to be a nice boost to the already ferocious front seven. DL Fletcher Cox was a one-man wrecking crew. Philly gets the national spotlight for a divisional game versus Washington on Monday Night Football.

Pittsburgh Steelers

Power Ranking: 3

  • Previous Week: 12
  • Record: 4-2
  • Week 6 result: Win versus Kansas City Chiefs, 19-13
  • Week 7: versus Cincinnati Bengals

Truthfully, I don’t know what to make of the Steelers. Part of me knows this is kind of par for the course for any Mike Tomlin coached team. They almost always have 2 or 3 terrible losses to bad teams only to be balanced by wins like Sunday. They got destroyed by Leonard Fournette and the Jaguars last week and then went into Arrowhead to hand the Chiefs their first loss of the season. RB Le’Veon Bell is properly back into football shape as he rolled up near 200 yards. It was a good thing too because QB Ben Roethlisberger didn’t play well again. His one long TD pass to Antonio Brown likely should have been intercepted. The road doesn’t get easier next week with division rival Bengals coming to Heinz Field fresh off a bye week.

Minnesota Vikings

Power Ranking: 4

  • Previous Week: 8
  • Record: 4-2
  • Week 6 result: Win versus Green Bay Packers, 23-10
  • Week 7: versus Baltimore Ravens

Jerick McKinnon FantasyI really don’t feel comfortable having the Vikings this high with so much uncertainty at the QB position. Sorry, but Case Keenum doesn’t count as a solid option. There’s some noise about Teddy Bridgewater being ready to come off the PUP list, but I don’t see that as a viable option either. The Vikings don’t have to apologize for their win today, even though it was surely made easier by Green Bay losing Aaron Rodgers. There’s not a lot of teams that could lose their starting running back, quarterback and number one wide receiver and be 4-2 through six games. With at least one report that Sam Bradford’s knee injury could be career threatening, Minnesota better get used to being short-handed. They should be able to handle the Ravens in Minnesota next week.

Seattle Seahawks

Power Ranking: 5

  • Previous Week: 7
  • Record: 3-2
  • Week 6 result: Bye Week
  • Week 7: at New York Giants

The Seahawks had a bye week to try and work on their offensive line as that’s the one big issue holding them back. Russell Wilson and the rest of the offense have a history of getting hotter as the year goes on.They do have to travel to New York for a 1 pm start, which is typically not kind to the West Coast teams. The Giants are coming off an improbable victory Sunday against the Broncos.

Houston Texans

Power Ranking: 6

  • Previous Week: 11
  • Record: 3-3
  • Week 6 result: Win versus Cleveland Browns, 33-17
  • Week 7: Bye Week

Deshaun Watson TexansAre the Texans the best 3-3 team in football? Would they be 3-3 if they just had started QB Deshaun Watson from the get-go? I think the answers are yes and no. Watson has been unbelievable since he took over. It’s probably not fair to count his first start against him. He was on a short week and had to travel to Cincinnati. Watson just kept throwing touchdowns all over the place again on Sunday. I’m not going to put a lot of stock into working over the Browns. We’ll have to wait a week to continue to see what Watson can do as Houston is on bye next week. It comes at a good time because their defense is injury riddled and needs to try and figure out how to replace quite a few players.

Carolina Panthers

Power Ranking: 7

  • Previous Week: 5
  • Record: 4-2
  • Week 6 result: Loss versus Philadelphia Eagles, 28-23
  • Week 7: at Chicago Bears

The Panthers lost a close one Thursday night to one of the better teams in football. I don’t want to move them down too far. QB Cam Newton did his best to drag Carolina to a win. I’m not sure why the offense runs the way it does. There are points where the play designs are great. There was a point when the Panthers were on the goal line that they showed Newton threaten a QB sneak. They also spread the field and Cam had an easy TD throw to RB Christian McCaffrey. There are also points where it seems like they just have Cam throw a 50/50 ball and hope for the best. That’s likely why the offense is a bit uneven. It doesn’t help they can’t run the ball in the slightest right now. The Panthers head to Chicago to face a Bears defense that plays better at home.

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Washington Redskins

Power Ranking: 8

  • Previous Week: 12
  • Record: 3-2
  • Week 6 result: Win versus San Francisco 49ers, 26-24
  • Week 7: at Philadelphia Eagles

Washington doesn’t get many style points this week. San Francisco was on their third straight road game. QB Kirk Cousins played very well. That in and of itself isn’t surprising. What is surprising is no one receiver had a huge game. RB Chris Thompson was the leading receiver by yardage. I don’t know how long Cousins can continue to play well without major contributions from Terrelle Pryor, Jamison Crowder, or Jordan Reed. The Washington defense will be better once CB Josh Norman gets back in the action. They have a tough test this week when they travel to Philly for Monday night football.

Atlanta Falcons

Power Ranking: 9 

  • Previous Week: 4
  • Record: 3-2
  • Week 6 result: Loss versus Miami Dolphins, 20-17
  • Week 7: at New England Patriots

Matt RyanAtlanta is treading on thin ice right now. This is a really bad loss to a mediocre Miami squad. It’s compounded by the fact Atlanta was coming off the bye. They have two losses at home to inferior teams and could have easily lost two other games. The defense was gouged by RB Jay Ajayi for over 130 yards. QB Matt Ryan continued his up and down play. WR Julio Jones is still without a touchdown this season. Is it fair to wonder if the nagging injuries have finally caught up with him? He’s always capable of having a monster game; they just seem to come less frequently anymore. Both RBs Devonta Freeman and Tevin Coleman were held in check. The Falcons have to travel to New England this week with both teams looking for some confidence.

New England Patriots

Power Ranking: 1o

  • Previous Week: 6
  • Record: 4-2
  • Week 6 result: Win versus New York Jets, 24-17
  • Week 7: versus Atlanta Falcons

Speaking of the Patriots, they’re back to back with Atlanta this week. I was tempted to put the Pats even further down because the Jets were completely and utterly robbed of a touchdown. Seeing as how they only won by 7 points, this game would have looked a lot different had the Jets gotten that TD. Even with the win, the Patriots still didn’t look very good yet again. Every single QB has passed for over 300 yards against New England. The offense still doesn’t look quite as dangerous as most thought. TE Rob Gronkowski is still the best tight end in the game when he’s right. The stable of running backs are all trying to find consistency. The Pats host the Falcons this week.

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Green Bay Packers

Power Ranking: 12

  • Previous Week: 2
  • Record: 4-2
  • Week 6 result: Loss versus Minnesota Vikings, 23-10
  • Week 7: versus New Orleans Saints

Well Packer fans, I’m sorry your season ended so early. Losing QB Aaron Rodgers is flat out catastrophic to Green Bay. The gap between Rodgers and backup Brett Hundley is…quite large. There are already people calling for Colin Kaepernick and while I totally agree he should have a job, don’t hold your breath here. Green Bay is not calling Kaep. He’s filing a collusion lawsuit against the NFL. No team is going to touch him. The defense isn’t good and the skill players will all take a big hit. Even if the Packers can somehow sneak in as a Wild Card team, the season is basically over. The only slim hope is Rodgers could make it back in time for the very end of the season. I’m hard-pressed to see Hundley being able to keep up with QB Drew Brees and company next week.

Los Angeles Rams

Power Ranking: 13

  • Previous Week: 15
  • Record: 4-2
  • Week 6 result: Win versus Jacksonville Jaguars, 27-17
  • Week 7: versus Arizona Cardinals

Todd Gurley Fantasy FootballThe Rams flew across the country and managed to pull off an improbable victory against the Jaguars. It helped that they started the game with a kickoff return for a touchdown. Nobody really stood out stats wise that should be noted.The Jaguar defense did a pretty good job of keeping the Rams offense in check. It was a nice bounce-back after a tough loss to the Seattle Seahawks last week. The Rams are all alone in first place in the NFC West after six weeks, which is something I didn’t think I would say at the start of the season. A key divisional matchup looms this week when the Cardinals come to town.

Denver Broncos

Power Ranking: 14

  • Previous Week: 9
  • Record: 3-2
  • Week 6 result: Loss versus New York Giants, 23-10
  • Week 7: at Los Angeles Chargers

This might be the worst loss of the season by any team. The Broncos were coming off a bye week. They were at home. The New York Giants were missing all three of their top wide receivers. Yet, Denver couldn’t take care of business at all. This is just totally confounding that the Broncos didn’t show up for this game. Maybe they were reading all the press clippings saying it should be an easy victory. It seems like a long time ago that QB Trevor Siemian was playing well. WR Emmanuel Sander suffered a nasty ankle injury and could miss some time. Inexplicably, C.J. Anderson couldn’t do a thing Sunday night. They need to figure out what happened before they go out to Los Angeles. When your defense just got shredded by Orleans Darkwa, a player like Melvin Gordon has to be excited. This was a huge step backward for the Broncos.

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Tennessee Titans

Power Ranking: 15

  • Previous Week: 18
  • Record: 3-3
  • Week 6 result: Win versus Indianapolis Colts, 36-22
  • Week 7: at Cleveland Browns

Tennessee overcame a very sluggish start and pulled away in the second half. QB Marcus Mariota was clearly not 100% and the offense didn’t seem to know what to do when he can’t run. Mariota stepped up and got it done even without his legs. Can we talk about how Derrick Henry looked better than DeMarco Murray again? It happens every 2-3 weeks and it’s not just because Henry busted off a huge run at the end of the game. It’s because Murray looked a little slow and tentative. Henry ran with authority. Murray must still be having injury issues. Maybe a game off would do him some good. Playing in Cleveland next week would be a good spot on paper to get Murray healthy and let Henry shoulder the load.

Dallas Cowboys

Power Ranking: 16

  • Previous Week: 16
  • Record: 2-3
  • Week 6 result: Bye Week
  • Week 7: at San Francisco 49ers

Ezekiel ElliottThe Cowboys may or may not have RB Ezekiel Elliott for Week 7 as he may or may not be suspended. This whole episode just continues to drag on between Zeke and the NFL. Dallas needs to get back on track when they travel to San Francisco this week. The sting of losing in the last minute to Aaron Rodgers can’t linger anymore. There’s no reason the Cowboys shouldn’t roll the 49ers.

New Orleans Saints

Power Ranking: 17

  • Previous Week: 19
  • Record: 3-2
  • Week 6 result: Win versus Detroit Lions, 52-38
  • Week 7: at Green Bay Packers

It’s not very often the Saints will put up 50 points on the scoreboard and QB Drew Brees doesn’t eclipse 200 yards passing. That’s exactly what happened Sunday as the defense had three scores of their own. Things got a little closer at the end considering New Orleans was up by 3+ scores for a good portion of the game. RB Mark Ingram enjoyed his first game without Adrian Peterson, racking up a ton of touches and scoring twice. Alvin Kamara will still have some nice games as well but it’s clear who the lead dog is, at least when New Orleans is winning. WR Michael Thomas was exceptionally quiet in this game. He’s been a little uneven after a spectacular rookie year. The Saints have to travel to a reeling Green Bay squad next.

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Detroit Lions

Power Ranking: 17

  • Previous Week: 10
  • Record: 3-3
  • Week 6 result: Loss versus New Orleans Saints, 52-38
  • Week 7: Bye Week

The bye couldn’t have come at a better time for the Lions. They seemingly still haven’t recovered from their last second loss to Atlanta a few weeks ago. They haven’t been the same team since. The offensive line is a big problem as New Orleans sacked QB Matthew Stafford five times and forced three turnovers. The Detroit defense has come back to earth a little bit as well. They held their own against the New Orleans offense but it’s still not a great unit. The Lions looked like a real threat in the NFC as recently as 3 weeks ago. Their division is there for the taking with Green Bay now in huge trouble. It remains to be seen if the Lions can take advantage of the opportunity.

Jacksonville Jaguars

Power Ranking: 18

  • Previous Week: 14
  • Record: 3-3
  • Week 6 result: Loss versus Los Angeles Rams, 27-17
  • Week 7: at Indianapolis Colts

Leonard Fournette JagsMan, the Jaguars are a frustrating team. Every week when I think they’ve turned the corner and they can be a good team, they go out and lose a game they shouldn’t. Even though I’m a big believer in what the Rams are doing, this was still a game the Jags should have if they’re a good team. Los Angeles had to fly to Jacksonville and didn’t appear to have the offense to match the Jacksonville defense. Special teams let the Jags down immediately as the opening kickoff was returned for a touchdown. It shows how little the margin for error is since Jacksonville literally doesn’t want QB Blake Bortles to throw the ball. RB Leonard Fournette continued his excellent rookie season with another 100 yards and a touchdown. He gets to take on the soft Colts defense this week.

New York Jets

Power Ranking: 19

  • Previous Week: 24
  • Record: 3-3
  • Week 6 result: Loss versus New England Patriots, 24-17
  • Week 7: at Miami Dolphins
[the_ad id=”72513″]The Jets may have lost this game but they have been wildly impressive to this point. Three wins already and it would have been really intriguing to see what happened in this game had TE Austin Seferian-Jenkins not had a TD taken away from him for no reason. The refs called a TD on the field only to somehow review it and say ASJ fumbled…even though he never let the ball go. It’s literally the first time I can ever remember that a fumble was ruled without the ball coming loose. It’s truly a shame that turned out to be the margin of victory in the game. I still have a hard time believing that the Jets are this good. They can continue to prove me wrong with a win in Miami this week.

Buffalo Bills

Power Ranking: 20

  • Previous Week: 22
  • Record: 3-2
  • Week 6 result: Bye Week
  • Week 7: versus Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Hopefully Buffalo was able to figure out who in the world is going to catch the ball during their bye week. For a team over .500, they are frightfully low on options. TE Charles Clay had his knee scoped and WR Jordan Matthews is still recovering from a torn ligament in his thumb. QB Tyrod Taylor is going to be in a tough spot when the Bucs roll into town. Tampa may not have much going for it on defense but the Bills may not have the weapons to put up a ton of points. Thier long-term ceiling is capped at the moment by a pop gun offense.

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Los Angeles Chargers

Power Ranking: 21

  • Previous Week: 25
  • Record: 2-4
  • Week 6 result: Win versus Oakland Raiders, 17-16
  • Week 7: versus Denver Broncos

Melvin GordonIt’s hard to gauge a divisional game as far as what to take from it. A win is a win and we’re just going to settle on that. QB Philip Rivers was quiet on Sunday and the offensive charge was led by RB Melvin Gordon and TE Hunter Henry. It’s nice that the Chargers remember Henry is a part of their football team after a very uneven start to the season. Henry is a good player and needs to see the field as much as possible. Even after a 0-4 start to their season, the Chargers could be right back in the thick of things with a win versus the Broncos this week.

Cincinnati Bengals

Power Ranking: 22

  • Previous Week: 20
  • Record: 2-3
  • Week 6 result: Bye Week
  • Week 7: at Pittsburgh Steelers

The Bengals draw the Steelers coming out of the bye week and it will be interesting to see how the Steelers play after a huge win in Kansas City. Additionally, we saw two pretty good teams in the Falcons and Broncos lay a giant egg coming out of their bye week. The Bengals had a well-timed bye as they were able to take an extra week with new coordinator Bill Lazor to continue to perfect their offense. They’ll face a big challenge against the Steelers defense.

Oakland Raiders

Power Ranking: 23

  • Previous Week: 17
  • Record: 2-4
  • Week 6 result: Loss versus Los Angeles Chargers, 17-16
  • Week 7: versus Kansas City Chiefs

All the Super Bowl predictions for the Raiders are looking pretty stupid right now. Even the loudest critics would have to admit they didn’t see Oakland being 2-4 at this point in the season. The offense has looked lost even before QB Derek Carr suffered fractures in his back. There’s no run game to speak of and the passing game is in shambles. WR Amari Cooper and his doomsday season have to shoulder some of that blame. The defense has probably played better than most thought. They did hold the Chargers to just 17 points and kept the passing game relatively quiet. It’s been a very difficult month for Oakland and now they get the Chiefs on a short week. Their bye week can’t come soon enough.

Arizona Cardinals

Power Ranking: 24

  • Previous Week: 26
  • Record: 3-3
  • Week 6 result: Win versus Tampa Bay Buccaneers, 38-33
  • Week 7: at Los Angeles Rams

Larry Fitzgerald FantasyAt least for one week, I’m going to be forced to eat some serious crow about Adrain Peterson. Maybe it’s because he was playing with a lot of other old guys, but Peterson turned back the clock and had a vintage performance. He went over 100 yards rushing and found the end zone twice. I’d still like to see what he does against a good defense, but the run game helped the passing game be very effective. The Bucs had no answers for the Carson Palmer and Larry Fitzgerald connection. Arizona has fought back to a .500 record and faces a big game this week when they travel to Los Angeles.

Indianapolis Colts

Power Ranking: 25

  • Previous Week: 21
  • Record:
  • Week 6 result:
  • Week 7: versus Jacksonville Jaguars

Coach Chuck Pagano has been on the hot seat for a little while now. The hideous game plan that called for RB Marlon Mack to get two touches and WR T.Y. Hilton only four targets should be a fireable offense. It’s bad enough you don’t have QB Andrew Luck. To not funnel the ball to the two players that are actual threats in your offense makes no sense. Donte Moncrief and Jack Doyle both made numerous errors and just kept seeing the ball. I understand the Titans are going to treat Hilton like a number one receiving option but one catch is inexcusable. It doesn’t get any easier for the Colts offense when they have to try and solve the Jaguars defense in Jacksonville.

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Chicago Bears

Power Ranking: 26

  • Previous Week: 27
  • Record: 3-3
  • Week 6 result: Win versus Baltimore Ravens, 27-24
  • Week 7: versus Carolina Panthers

Bears fans might feel like I’m disrespecting their team by having them this low even though they’re a .500 team. It just seems like the win in Baltimore is more about how bad the Ravens are than how good the Bears might be. QB Mitchell Trubisky has shown a little bit of potential. It’s also highly unfair to try and grade Trubisky with the startling lack of weapons he has. RBs Jordan Howard and Tarik Cohen are the whole show in Chicago right now. Any win that the Bears get on the road is a bonus. It wouldn’t be surprising to see the Bears stay competitive against the Panthers this week.

Miami Dolphins

Power Ranking: 27

  • Previous Week: 30
  • Record: 3-2
  • Week 6 result: Win versus Atlanta Falcons, 20-17
  • Week 7: versus New York Jets

The Dolphins deserve a lot of credit for pulling this victory off. The Falcons were coming out of a bye, Miami was missing WR DeVante Parker and they were on the road. DL Cameron Wake was a terror in this game and the Dolphins likely don’t win if not for him. WR Jarvis Landry scored a touchdown RB Jay Ajayi finally got rolling to the tune of 125+ yards. All of these things sound great, so why are the Dolphins still so low? Because they still have the albatross of QB Jay Cutler on this team. Maybe they have enough otherwise to sneak into the playoffs, but that seems like a bit of a stretch. The one factor working for Miami is they already have the bulk of their travel done. The furthest they have to call is to New England and Buffalo.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Power Ranking: 28

  • Previous Week: 23
  • Record: 2-3
  • Week 6 result: Loss versus Arizona Cardinals, 38-33
  • Week 7: at Buffalo Bills

COming into the season, a lot of people were calling for the Bucs to make a run at the playoffs. I had a hard time buying it then and it’s even harder now. QB Jameis Winston was knocked out of the game early and has a sprained AC joint in his shoulder. Even if Winston had played the whole game, that wouldn’t have excused the defense for getting destroyed by the old men that compromise the Arizona offense. Tampa doesn’t have a lot of areas that stand out. WR Mike Evans has been decent but not dominant to this point. RB Doug Martin has looked good coming back from suspension but he won’t be too involved if they Bucs are getting blown out. Tampa just looks like they’re missing some pieces.

San Francisco 49ers

Power Ranking: 29

  • Previous Week: 28
  • Record: 0-6
  • Week 6 result: Loss versus Washington Redskins, 26-24
  • Week 7: versus Dallas Cowboys

The 49ers continued their trend of being competitive when they shouldn’t be and not being able to find that first win. QB Brian Hoyer was benched in this game and rookie C.J. Beathard took the reins. He looked about as good as you would expect for a later round rookie. After a week where the 49ers released LB Navarro Bowman and rumors circulated about RB Carlos Hyde, this was impressive from San Francisco. It has to be frustrating as a 49er fan to keep getting close but not winning. Still, the expectations had to be low this season. It’s hard to see the 49ers beating the Cowboys this week.

Baltimore Ravens

Power Ranking: 30

  • Previous Week: 29
  • Record: 3-3
  • Week 6 result: Loss versus Chicago Bears, 27-24 in OT
  • Week 7: at Minnesota Vikings

Joe FlaccoA rookie QB making his first career road start just walked into Baltimore and walked out with a win. Granted, Mitchell Trubisky didn’t do a lot to get the win. The Ravens still had no business losing this game to a one-dimensional offense. QB Joe Flacco has been just horrible this season. The Ravens offense has very little going for it and there’s not one player that should scare the opposing defense. They might be .500 now but it’s going to be hard for them to get to 8 wins this season.

New York Giants

Power Ranking: 31

  • Previous Week: 31
  • Record: 1-5
  • Week 6 result: WIn versus Denver Broncos, 23-10
  • Week 7: versus Seattle Seahawks

This had to be the biggest upset of the season to this point. Almost everyone, including myself, thought that the Giants had zero chance in this game. Orleans Darkwa and Evan Engram proved a lot of people wrong Sunday night. It was definitely impressive though I can’t move the Giants up off a fluke victory. The offense is still in a dreadful spot with limited weapons and the defense will likely get exposed against a better offense. Let’s see what happens when Seattle comes to town this week.

Cleveland Browns

Power Ranking: 32

  • Previous Week: 32
  • Record: 0-6
  • Week 6 result: Loss versus Houston Texans, 33-17
  • Week 7: versus Tennessee Titans

The Factory of Sadness just keeps pumping out bad results. The Browns got hammered in Houston and had to watch a QB they could have taken in Deshaun Watson play extremely well. Granted, it helps that he has DeAndre Hopkins and Will Fuller. The Browns front office has made some good moves acquiring draft picks but have done a terrible job of turning them into actual good players. Cleveland will win a game eventually, I’m just not sure when.

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