Super Bowl 55 is done, with Tom Brady'sBuccaneers finishing at thetop of the NFL heap to end the 2020 season. But that also means it's Jake Arrieta Jersey a perfect way-too-early time to consider how all 32teams project to stack up against each other from best to worst for 2021.
Despit the Buccaneers' championship run, theChiefs are againthe early favorites to win it all with Patrick Mahomes like they were after earning their rings a year ago. A lot of the teams that just fell short in the AFC and NFC playoffs also figure to remain contending heavyweights.
Knowing that league fortunes can see dramatic change from one season to the next, here's a longview look ahead with Sporting News' first power rankings of the year:
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1. Kansas City Chiefs
Mahomes gives the Chiefs an extremely high floor and they don't have too many i sues with personnel drain yet in 2022 with their core players still around or getting to their primes.
2. Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Tom Brady made Chase Utley Jersey a two-year commitment and this young team otherwise should be considered the clear NFC favorites, rising from wild-card status with the Saints expected to slip in the South. The key will be navigating through the free agency of wide receiver Chris Godwin and linebackers Lavonte David and Shaquil Barrett.
3. Buffalo Bills
The Bills need to keep working to push the Chiefs in the AFC and already know they have the quarterback to get them there in Josh Allen. Look for a bump in running game and defense to help toward that end.
4. Green Bay Packers
Aaron Rodgers isn't going anywhere and their running game will go on with great succe s, with or without Aaron Jones. They also made a needed defensive shakeup in dismi sing Mike Pettine. The Chiefs made a similar change a couple years ago and shot up because of it.
5. Los Angeles Rams
The Rams lost Brandon Staley but they still can field a dominant defense with their plus talent, with a couple of key re-signings from linebacker Leonard Floyd and defensive backs Troy Hill and John Johnson II. Matthew Stafford gives them a much higher offensive floor and ceiling.
6. Baltimore Ravens
The Ravens found their groove with Lamar Jackson in the second half of 2020 and their defense was steady against both run and pa s when healthy for most of the way. Here's to getting a little more explosive and reliable around Jackson in the pa sing game to build off their strong running game.
7. Cleveland Browns
The Browns scratched the surface of their offensive potential with Baker Mayfield under Kevin Stefanski. Defensively, they will shore up some holes in the front seven around Myles Garrett and be healthier in the secondary. They now have the wild-card winning experience off which to build.
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8. San Francisco 49ers
The 49ers were an injury-ravaged me s on both sides of the ball. They should rebound in the defensive Chuck Klein Jersey front seven with NIck Bosa healthy and work on getting reinforcements to overcome asecondary full of free agents. The offense will return to buzzing at a much higher-level with all the key skill players pushing Kyle Shanahan's scheme toward its ceiling.
9. Seattle Seahawks
The Seahawks are trying to find more juice and le s predictability in their offense with a new scheme for Ru sell Wilson. Their defense, even with some vital pieces such as Bobby Wagner and Jamal Adams, must continue to rebuild with more reliability in the pa s rush and secondary.
10. Miami Dolphins
Tua Tagovailoa should get plenty more offensive skill and line help in Year 2, a suming Sean Rodriguez Jersey he's still the quarterback. The defense for Brian Flores is an exceptional unit that can also get better in the pa s rush and second level.
11. Los Angeles Chargers
Justin Herbert and the offense should keep humming along with top skill players and definite line improvements. Defensively, Staley's influence will get the best out of Joey Bosa and the rest. Watch out for them emerging as a strong second-best to the Chiefs in the AFC West again.
12. Dallas Cowboys
This might seem high for the Cowboys, but this is how much a healthy return of Dak Prescott, locked and loaded with a long-term deal, would mean to them, a lot offensively and some defensively, too. MIke McCarthy can build on how he coached better in the second half with his new team in 2020.
13. Tenne see Titans
The Titans can feel good about remaininga dangerous offensive team with the 1-2 punch of Derrick Henry and A.J. Brown and figure to be aggre sive making some key defensive changes to help them with the pa s rush and outside secondary coverage.
14. Arizona Cardinals
Kyler Murray and Kilff Kingsbury had them on the verge of the NFC playoffs with a run-heavy attack buoyed by some improved downfield pa sing. Their defense also showed Drew Hutchison Jersey how many playmakers it had. They might be out of luck to get in the tournament again, however, in a division that's only getting stronger.
15. New Orleans Saints
The Saints are bound for a drop based on the strong po sibility of Drew Brees retiring and some upcoming key defensive defections. The Buccaneers will continue their mojo with Brady to displace them atop the division.
16. Pittsburgh Steelers
The Steelers could see Ben Roethlisberger retire or move on from him. They also have a slew of offensive and defensive free-agency concerns for Mike Tomlin's aging team.
17. Indianapolis Colts
The Colts have a good defensive foundation and will remain sturdy in the running game. But it's hard to project them higher than this with quarterback becoming the great unknown again.
18. New England Patriots
The Patriots should be better in many areas with improved health of veterans and improved play from youngsters. But they stay in the middle of the pack until we know whether Bill Belichick can find a much better post-Brady QB answer in 2021.
19. Philadelphia Nick Williams Jersey Eagles
The Eagles need to figure out whether it's Carson Wentz or Jalen Hurts starting for offensive-minded new coach Nick Sirianni. There's a good bet the former rebounds or the latter breaks through. They have the potential to flip back into an efficient high-scoring unit. Defensively, they will need to adjust to a new scheme with key secondary changes.
20. Atlanta Falcons
The Falcons s