FanPost

Week 5 Power Rankings

Pro Football Weekly ranks them 2nd:  Proved they could win games on the ground, as well.

National Football Post ranks them 2nd:  The Patriots used a balanced game plan to win up front vs. Rex Ryan and the Jets.

ESPN ranks them 2nd:  Little-known fact: New England's offense is sixth in the NFL in rushing.

Peter King (SI) ranks them 3rd:  Wes Welker, five catches for 126 yards. I'm beginning to think we just might discuss him in the Hall of Fame room someday. Might.

The Sporting News ranks them 3rd:  Logan Mankins was the last pick of the first round and remains a fixture as their best offensive lineman in front of Brady and their running game

Pete Prisco (CBS Sports) ranks them 3rd:  The good thing is the defense played better against the Jets. That side of the ball is a work in progress. It is improving.

WEEI ranks them 4th:  The versatility of the Patriots offense makes Tom Brady and crew one of the most dominant teams in the game. Whether they need to pass, run, go to the no-huddle, or sustain a long drive, the Pats can do it all and are only going to get better. The production from the run game has been key. Brady can rely on his backs to move the chains, and it has helped balance the offense. Defenses have to worry about both the run and pass. The win against the Jets has to bolster the defense’s confidence as well. Although they faced a poor offensive team, the Pats should be encouraged after making big stops on third down. They’ll face a major test this Sunday against the Cowboys pass offense.

NFL.com ranks them 4th:  Those throwback uniforms look awesome. I don't care if they remind you Pats fans of Tony Eason getting swarmed under by a guy who didn't want to attend President Obama's White House re-vite. Consider this an unusual comment after they allowed four sacks, but the most underrated aspect of the 2011 Patriots is the play of the offensive line. Considering how much Tom Brady throws, how little the Pats max-protect with their tight ends, and the fact that New England averages 4.7 yards per carry this season, the O-line deserves some love for the 4-1 start. The Pats and that front line racked up 152 yards rushing on Rex Ryan's defense.

Pro Football Talk ranks them 5th:  Leave it to a team from near Harvard to make the Jets look like a bunch of dummies.

Brian Billick (Fox Sports) ranks them 5th:  Whether it comes from Steven Ridley or BenJarvus Green-Ellis, by adding a running game to what Tom Brady is doing this year, they could be lethal. Even with a good outing against the Jets, New England's D continues to be a concern, but between Brady's efficiency and an improved running game, it doesn't matter.

SB Nation ranks them 5th:  Impressive stat: the Pats have scored at least 30 points in 13 straight regular season games. Gotta go back to last year's loss to the Browns to find the last time they didn't.

Posted Wednesday:

Michael Silver (Yahoo! Sports) ranks them 2nd:  Does the fact that BenJarvus Green-Ellis has zero fumbles in 406 career rushing attempts pretty much make him Bill Belichick’s favorite back of all time?

Don Banks (SI) ranks them 3rd:  It was pretty impressive to see the pass-happy Patriots run the ball straight down the Jets' throats on Sunday's game-icing fourth-quarter drive. New York simply couldn't stop New England running back BenJarvus Green-Ellis, who gouged the Jets 10 times for 59 of the 69 yards the Patriots gained on their final and fateful field-goal drive. It was just the sort of imposition of will that Rex Ryan wants his running game to feature. But it doesn't. This time, it was the Jets who got grounded and pounded.

Cold Hard Football Facts ranks them 4th:  The Patriots’ running game is always moving forward; New England has only run for a loss on 5.8 percent of their attempts this year, best in the league.

AVERAGE RANK:  3.4

The views expressed in these FanPosts are not necessarily those of the writers or SBNation.

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