So much can change over one week in the NFL. That’s the case after Week 5 for the Atlanta Falcons.
On NFL.com’s list, the Falcons jumped five spots. ESPN moved Atlanta up six spots.
“Desmond Ridder delivered the performance on Sunday that some critics said he couldn’t, which was a huge development for this team,” wrote NFL.com’s Eric Edholm. “He made several big throws, but none were bigger than the 23-yarder to Drake London with 55 seconds left — after a low snap, and with pressure in Ridder’s face.
“From there, the Falcons just had to drain the clock and turn it over to their kicker.”
More importantly than the rankings, Edholm argued the Falcons are “back in good shape” to compete in the NFC South.
“This game checked a lot of boxes, with Ridder, London, Kyle Pitts, Bijan Robinson and Atlanta’s underrated defense playing big roles in the victory,” Edholm wrote. “We’d still love for the Falcons to score more points, but they are 3-2, and aside from Tampa in Week 7, none of their opponents before their Week 11 bye are currently above .500.”
The upcoming schedule sets up nicely for the Falcons. Atlanta’s next opponent, the Washington Commanders, dropped in the NFL.com and ESPN power rankings. Washington lost at home to the Chicago Bears on Thursday night.
The Commanders sat outside the top 20 on both the newest NFL.com and ESPN power rankings.
In Week 7, the Falcons will face the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Then, they will play the Tennessee Titans, Minnesota Vikings and Arizona Cardinals before the bye week.
Of those three teams, NFL.com and ESPN ranked the Titans the highest at No. 23. The Vikings and Cardinals were ranked at No. 25 and 27, respectively, on both lists.