Rams still top AP Pro32 poll; Patriots, Chiefs tied at No. 2
NEW YORK (AP) — The Los Angeles Rams are in seventh heaven.
The Rams (7-0) remain the league’s only unbeaten team after a 39-10 rout of the San Francisco 49ers.
They will look to stay unbeaten when they host Aaron Rodgers and the Green Bay Packers on Sunday.
And the Rams are the unanimous top team in the latest AP Pro32 poll for the fifth consecutive week. They received all 12 first-place votes and 384 points in balloting Tuesday by media members who regularly cover the NFL.
“With (running back) Todd Gurley and (defensive lineman) Aaron Donald doing the dirty work, the league’s only unbeaten team is blessed with superstars on both sides of the ball,” said Ira Kaufman of Fox 13 in Tampa, Florida.
The New England Patriots and Kansas City Chiefs are tied for second with 365 points. The Patriots (5-2) have won four in a row and are back on top of the AFC East. They will close out Week 8 when they head to Buffalo to take on the Bills on “Monday Night Football.” New England has won 31 of its past 35 meetings with the division rival.
The Chiefs (6-1) have the AFC’s best record and rebounded in a big way from their only loss with a 45-10 rout of Cincinnati.
“They call him ‘Showtime,’ and Patrick Mahomes continues to live up to the nickname with yet another spectacular showing in a four-touchdown performance against the Bengals,” Newsday’s Bob Glauber said. “There may not be a defense capable of stopping him.”
The Chiefs will face the Broncos on Sunday for the second time this month. In the first matchup, the Chiefs rallied in the fourth quarter with two late touchdowns for a 27-23 win. It’s their closest margin of victory in a game this season.
The New Orleans Saints and Minnesota Vikings are next at Nos. 4 and 5. The first-place NFC teams will meet on Sunday night in one of the top matchups of Week 8.
The Los Angeles Chargers slipped a spot to No. 6 after holding on for a 20-19 win over the Titans in London when Tennessee coach Mike Vrabel went for a 2-point conversion instead of attempting a game-tying PAT.
There was another tie in the top 10 as Pittsburgh and Carolina are both No. 7. The Steelers (3-2-1) lead the AFC North after their bye week and will face Cleveland on Sunday for the second time this season.
Also Sunday, the Panthers will host the Baltimore Ravens, who slipped three spots to No. 9 after losing 24-23 to the Saints when Justin Tucker missed a game-tying PAT in the final minute. Tucker had been 222 for 222 on PATs since turning pro in 2012.
“I feel like I cost us the game,” he said Sunday night. “Every single one of my teammates thus far has told me the opposite, and no one play wins or loses a game. But that’s a tough thing to grapple with when you’re the guy in that situation at the end of the game.”
Washington (4-2) jumped six spots to round out the top 10. The Redskins were the beneficiary of a missed kick against Dallas. Matt Baher’s 52-yard attempt hit the left upright as time expired in Washington’s 20-17 win.