It's the halfway point of the NFL season, and so far it's been eight weeks filled with plenty of surprises and not too much great football.

Among the surprises:

  • The Buffalo Bills were supposed to be tanking, and yet they're 5-2 heading into a brutal stretch of their schedule the next five weeks.
  • The Los Angeles Rams come out of their bye tied for first place in the NFC West.
  • The Minnesota Vikings lead the NFC North with their starting quarterback playing two games and Case Keenum taking over as the starter.
  • The Oakland Raiders, a preseason Super Bowl pick by many, are now 3-5 heading into the second half of the season.
  • The New Orleans Saints lead the NFC South and may actually have a defense. Yes, the Saints have a defense.

Will all these things stay this way as we head to the second half? Probably not, but November is a month for separating from the pack and showing growth as a team. The teams that do that will be playoff teams.

For now, the Rams, Saints, Vikings and Bills are top-10 teams in my Power Rankings. How many are still there come December? I say at least two, but you try and guess which ones it will be. In this wacky season, we really have no idea about this league. Do we? 

Biggest Movers
13 Ravens
6 Dolphins
Rk
Teams
 
Chg
Rcrd
1 Eagles They have a quarterback and pass rushers. That's usually a good combination. They are rolling. --1-4-1
2 Patriots The defense is getting better, even without some key players. That's a good sign moving forward. The trade of Jimmy Garoppplo was the smart thing to do. --2-3-0
3 Steelers They are peaking now and might be the most-balanced team in the league. Will it be that way come January? --5-0-0
4 Chiefs They bounced back in style against the Broncos Monday night to take command of the division race. They face a tough one at Dallas this week. --5-1-0
5 Rams They come off their bye with a long road trip to play the Giants. But they've had some long ones already, including at London two weeks ago. Are they ready to push for a division title? --4-2-0
6 Seahawks The offense is explosive with the way Russell Wilson is playing. He is carrying this team right now. --5-0-0
7 Saints Is the defense for real? It sure looks like it is for now. Dennis Allen is doing a heck of a job with that side of the ball. --3-2-0
8 Vikings The defense continues to carry this team, but Case Keenum is doing a nice job. Can it continue? --1-5-0
9 Bills Sean McDermott is in the conversation for Coach of the Year. He's done a heck of a job, but the next five weeks will define this team. The schedule gets tougher. 14-2-0
10 Falcons Was that a season-saving victory against the Jets? They face a brutal division game this week on the third of three straight road games against Carolina. 11-5-0
11 Cowboys They've won two straight, both on the road, to get back on track. But now comes word that star runner Ezekiel Elliott is likely gone for the next six games -- pending an appeal of his suspension. 12-4-0
12 Jaguars They traded to get defensive tackle Marcell Dareus from the Bills during the bye. It's obvious they think they can make a playoff push. 31-5-0
13 Panthers The offense still isn't clicking, but they found a way to beat the Bucs behind the defense. They will need to score more this week against Atlanta. 43-3-0
14 Ravens That was an impressive showing against Miami last Thursday night. The defense looked to be back. 135-1-0
15 Dolphins That was really ugly at Baltimore. Coach Adam Gase was wise to call out his offense because it's offensive. 63-3-0
16 Titans The bye came at a good time for Marcus Mariota and his ailing hamstring. They face a tough Ravens defense this week. 25-0-0
17 Texans Deshaun Watson has made this an offensive team. With the way the defense is playing, it needs to be. 41-5-0
18 Packers The bye had to help to get them healthy, and give Brett Hundley more time as the starting quarterback. Can he get them to the playoffs? 24-1-0
19 Football Team At 3-4, with two straight losses, they face an almost must-win this week at Seattle. That won't be easy with a banged-up offensive line. 11-5-0
20 Broncos Is it time to make a change at quarterback? They just aren't good enough on offense with Trevor Siemian right now. 12-3-0
21 Lions They've lost four of their last five games and face a big division road game this week. 12-3-0
22 Chargers They continue to lose close games, which they did at New England. At some point, they have to change that. 11-4-0
23 Bengals They made it interesting against the struggling Colts, and now must go to Jacksonville and face that good defense. That won't be easy. 51-4-1
24 Raiders This season is going bad. They have major defensive issues, which show up every week. That puts too much pressure on the offense. 23-2-0
25 Bears The defense shows up every week, which helps keep them in games. But they aren't good enough on offense yet. 25-1-0
26 Jets They are a feisty team, but two straight losses have them at 3-5. They face a big division game against the Bills Thursday night. 20-6-0
27 Cardinals They come out of the bye with Drew Stanton as their starting quarterback with Carson Palmer out. That will be a challenge for this team. 24-2-0
28 Buccaneers At 2-5, a season that seemed so promising in the preseason looks to be going off the rails. They have to win this week at New Orleans -- or else. 24-2-0
29 Colts With news that Andrew Luck will get his shoulder looked at again, they might be without him all season long. It's going to be a long season. --4-2-0
30 Giants They come out of their bye hoping to turn things around. But the reality is they are playing for next year. --1-5-0
31 49ers They aren't getting much production from rookie passer C.J. Beathard, which probably led to the trade for Jimmy Garoppolo. Now they have to pay him. --3-3-0
32 Browns Is there any reason to think they won't be in this spot at the end of the season? They just aren't good enough to win right now. --4-2-0