Last night, the Indianapolis Colts and Houston Texans played an exciting game at NRG Stadium. Indianapolis jumped out to a 24-0 lead in the first quarter on the strength of the connection between Andrew Luck and T.Y. Hilton. The latter would finish with 9 catches for 223 yards and a touchdown.
But despite Hilton’s domination, this game would turn out to be much closer than expected. The Texans mounted a rally while Arian Foster ran for 109 yards and two touchdowns. However, it wasn’t enough as the Texans fell just short in this battle by a score of 33-28. See how far Indianapolis rises and Houston falls in our NFL power rankings for Week 6.
1. Denver Broncos (3-1); beat Arizona Cardinals 41-20, retains same ranking – An anticipated matchup between the Broncos and undefeated Cardinals turned into a blowout as Arizona QB Drew Stanton got knocked out early with a concussion. But the real story here was Demaryius Thomas’ 226 receiving yards.
2. Seattle Seahawks (3-1); beat Washington Redskins 27-17, retains same ranking – Seattle won, as predicted, thanks to 122 rushing yards by Russell Wilson, the most by a quarterback in Monday Night Football history.
3. San Diego Chargers (4-1); beat New York Jets 31-0, moves up two spots – People expected the offense to be good again. But nobody expected San Diego’s defense to be so effective.
4. San Francisco 49ers (3-2); beat Kansas City Chiefs 22-17, moves up two spots – A week after rushing for 119 yards, Frank Gore added another 107 yards against the Chiefs. Gore is getting great blocking from the line, as his 4.8 yards-before-contact numbers suggest.
5. Philadelphia Eagles (4-1); beat St. Louis Rams 34-28, moves up two spots – Philadelphia really got their two-headed rushing attack going with 145 yards on the ground. RT Lane Johnson’s return from suspension had a lot to do with this.
6. Arizona Cardinals (3-1); lost to New England 41-20, drops two spots – We can’t fault the Cardinals too badly for this blowout loss, given that they were playing at Denver and with brutally ineffective Logan Thomas at QB.
7. Indianapolis Colts (3-2); beat Houston Texans 33-28 (Thursday Night), moves up one spot – Andrew Luck still doesn’t have an outstanding supporting cast. But they are definitely good enough to help this team win the AFC South.
8. New England Patriots (2-2); beat Cincinnati Bengals 43-17, moves up four spots – Last week, half the NFL stories were about Tom Brady’s decline. This week, it’s all praise for the 37-year-old quarterback.
9. Cincinnati Bengals (3-1); lost to New England Patriots 43-17, drops six spots – The darlings of many power rankings a week ago, Cincinnati got smashed in New England. The key stat for Cincy: 0-for-7 on third downs.
11. Dallas Cowboys (4-1); beat Houston Texans 20-17, moves up two spots – DeMarco Murray became just the third running back to rush for over 100 yards in the first five games. His company: Jim Brown and O.J. Simpson.
12. Detroit Lions (3-2); lost to Buffalo Bills 17-14, drops three spots – Detroit is now on to its third kicker of the season, and for good reason because they’re 4-of-12 on field goals.
13. Baltimore Ravens (3-2); lost to Indianapolis Colts 20-13, drops three spots – The offense looked pretty tame until the last quarter while the defense did its best to make this a tough, gritty game.
14. Carolina Panthers (3-2); beat Chicago Bears 31-24, moves up three spots – It’s a good thing that Carolina got this victory because they’re entering the meet of their schedule, beginning with a trip to Cincinnati.
15. New Orleans Saints (2-3); beat Tampa Bay Buccaneers 37-31 (OT), moves up one spot – Predictably, New Orleans won at home again; they’re 2-0 at home and 0-3 on the road.
16. Chicago Bears (2-3); lost to Carolina Panthers 31-24, drops two spots – Chicago started off well but faded down the stretch. Both of Jay Cutler’s interceptions were downfield throws, and he’s completing just 23% of these attempts.
17. Pittsburgh Steelers (3-2); beat Jacksonville 17-9, moves up one spot – Pittsburgh seems to be a pretty middling team. A week after losing to Tampa Bay, they won a tight contest against league-worst Jacksonville.
18. Buffalo Bills (3-2); beat Detroit Lions 17-14, drops two spots – After a terrible start by Kyle Orton, he rallied the troops for 17 straight points to win this one.
19. Miami Dolphins (2-2); bye week, retains same ranking – Miami faces a pivotal home game against Green Bay that will go a long way towards determining their AFC East title chances.
20. Kansas City Chiefs (2-2); lost to San Francisco 22-17, drops five spots – After scoring on their first two drives, Kansas City’s offense completely staggered, failing to get a drive of more than six plays going.
21. New York Giants (3-2); beat Atlanta Falcons 30-20, moves up one spot
22. Atlanta Falcons (2-3); lost to New York Giants, drops one spot
23. Cleveland Browns (2-2); beat Tennessee Titans 29-28, moves up four spots
24. Houston Texans (3-2); lost to Indianapolis 33-28 (Thursday Night), retains same ranking
25. St. Louis (1-3); lost to Philadelphia Eagles 34-28, retains same ranking
26. Tennessee Titans (1-4); lost to Cleveland Browns, moves up three spots
27. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (1-4); lost to New Orleans Saints 37-31 (OT), moves up three spots
28. New York Jets (1-4); lost to San Diego 31-0, drops two spots
29. Washington Redskins (1-4); lost to Seattle 27-17, moves two spots
30. Minnesota Vikings (2-3); lost to Green Bay 42-10, drops three spots
31. Oakland Raiders (0-4); bye week, retains same ranking
32. Jacksonville Jaguars (0-5); lost to Pittsburgh Steelers 17-9, retains same ranking