NEW YORK – Through five weeks, the Los Angeles Rams have handled every challenge thrown their way.
Doesn’t matter if they’ve been involved in blowouts, shootouts or close games that come down to the final moments, the results have all been the same: another Rams win.
And because of that, they are the unanimous top team in the latest AP Pro32 poll for the third consecutive week.
Once again, the Rams received all 12 first-place votes and 384 points in balloting Tuesday by media members who regularly cover the NFL.
“The Rams keep finding different ways to win,” Newsday’s Bob Glauber said.
“On a day when Jared Goff isn’t sharp, Todd Gurley scores three touchdowns and Sean McVay makes a gutsy fourth-down call to ice the Seahawks in a shootout win.”
And the Rams will look to extend their perfect start as they head to Denver to take on the Broncos.
The league’s other 5-0 team, the Kansas City Chiefs, stayed at No. 2. The Chiefs face their biggest test of the season so far when they travel to Foxborough, Massachusetts to face Tom Brady and the Patriots on Sunday night. The Patriots jumped three spots to No. 4.
“Showdown looms with KC,” Fox Sports’ John Czarnecki said.
The Saints inched up a spot to No. 3 after Drew Brees became the NFL’s all-time leader in yards passing in New Orleans’ 43-19 rout of Washington on Monday night.
The Cincinnati Bengals, who pulled off an unlikely fourth-quarter rally to beat the Miami Dolphins 27-17 on Sunday, moved up a spot to No. 5. The next two weeks could go a long way in determining how the Bengals do this season. This week, the Bengals host the Pittsburgh Steelers in a key AFC North matchup. Coach Marvin Lewis is 2-15 at home against their rivals, including the postseason.
And the following week, their matchup against the Chiefs got flexed into the Sunday night slot. Cincinnati is 6-14 in prime-time games since 2011, including 0-5 on Sunday night.
“We’ll know a lot more about the Bengals after they face the Steelers and Chiefs in the next two weeks, but this team is playing smart, winning football,” said Ira Kaufman of Fox 13 in Tampa.
The Carolina Panthers, who squeaked past the New York Giants on Graham Gano’s 63-yard field goal with 1 second remaining Sunday, jumped three spots to No. 6.
The Jacksonville Jaguars dropped four spots to No. 7 after getting routed in Kansas City.
“Injuries are taking a heavy toll on an offense struggling to overcome injury issues at running back and left tackle,” The Sporting News’ Alex Marvez said of the Jaguars.
The Chicago Bears stayed at No. 8 during their bye week and will return to action against the reeling Miami Dolphins.
The Minnesota Vikings jumped five spots to No. 9 after topping the Philadelphia Eagles 23-21 in a rematch of last season’s NFC championship game.
Baltimore dropped five spots to No. 10 after losing 12-9 in overtime to AFC North rival Cleveland.
And in a Bay Area bummer, the Oakland Raiders, who are down four spots to No. 31, and the San Francisco 49ers, down one place to No. 32, round out the poll.
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