NFL Standings: NFC West continues to be a tight race, Steelers and Ravens heading toward key AFC North matchup


Seven weeks of NFL football are in the books and we’re now getting a crisper view of how each division is shaking out. As evidenced by that thrilling Sunday Night Football matchup between the Seahawks and Cardinals, the NFC West has continued to be one of the toughest divisions that the league has to offer. In the other conference, the AFC North has also proven to have a number of playoff-caliber clubs, two of which will go head-to-head in a key Week 8 matchup. As for the NFC East, well, one team will inevitably be crowned champion, despite every single club currently sitting below .500. 

Below, you’ll get a division-by-division breakdown of the current standings, how each team looks coming out of Week 7 and who they have next up on the schedule as they either try to maintain their lead or continue to climb the ladder. 

AFC East

Bills 5-2
Dolphins 3-3
Patriots 2-4
Jets 0-7

Bills: Buffalo had a bit of a scare last week against the winless Jets, trailing at halftime and settling for field goals throughout. Thanks to kicker Tyler Bass — who needed six of his eight field goals — they were able to maintain some breathing room in the division and avoid an embarrassing loss. 
Next game: vs. Patriots

Patriots: Jimmy Garoppolo made his return to Foxborough after that infamous 2017 trade and his 49ers blew out the Patriots at Gillette Stadium. That 33-6 final score is the biggest loss by scoring margin in Foxborough since Bill Belichick took over as head coach. Cam Newton was benched for Jarrett Stidham for the fourth quarter as the Patriots offense appears to be in shambles. While it’s still early, next Sunday’s game against Buffalo feels like a make-or-break contest. 
Next game: at Bills

Dolphins: The Dolphins were on a bye in Week 7, but about to embark on a new era as Tua Tagovailoa has been named the starter going forward in Miami. Given that Miami is still in the thick of the AFC East race, this move away from Ryan Fitzpatrick was surprising. That said, the Dolphins want to see what the No. 5 overall pick can do and will be faced it a tough test out of the shoot with Aaron Donald and the Rams defense. 
Next game: vs. Rams

Jets: New York was pretty feisty in Week 7, flirting with an upset win over the Bills. However, Buffalo was able to do just enough to avoid its third loss of the season and the Jets continue to remain winless on the year. Outside of possibly playing spoiler, New York is too far gone to make much noise the rest of the way. 
Next game: at Chiefs

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AFC West

Chiefs 6-1
Raiders 3-3
Chargers 2-4
Broncos 2-4

Chiefs: Kansas City flexed its Lombardi muscles in the Denver snow in Week 7, blowing out the Broncos, 43-16. By looking at just the final score, you’d assume this was a dominant display by Patrick Mahomes, but it was actually the Chiefs defense and special teams that were putting up points. Corner Daniel Sorensen picked off Drew Lock and returned it 50 yards for a touchdown and Byron Pringle took a kickoff 102 yards to the house. It is noteworthy that Las Vegas currently has the tiebreaker in their head-to-head this season, but K.C. has plenty of breathing room in the AFC West and will host the Jets in Week 8. 
Next game: vs. Jets

Raiders: Las Vegas felt the wrath of Tom Brady and the Buccaneers offense as the quarterback lit up the Raiders secondary for 369 yards and five total touchdowns. Derek Carr and company simply couldn’t go toe-to-toe with that kind of offensive firepower. From here, they’ll look to remain in the playoff hunt and avoid going below .500 when they travel to Cleveland in Week 8. 
Next game: at Browns

Chargers: Justin Herbert continues to impress and make a late run for Offensive Rookie of the Year. The Chargers first-round pick threw for 347 yards and three touchdowns while also rushing for 66 yards and a score in Los Angeles’ win over Jacksonville. He’ll now try to carry this momentum into Denver as the Chargers and Broncos will duke it out with the loser landing in last place of the division. 
Next game: at Broncos

Broncos: Denver simply couldn’t handle the multi-faceted attack by the Chiefs, who dropped 43 points in their Week 7 win. Both Drew Lock and Melvin Gordon turned the ball over twice in the loss, while running back Phillip Lindsay is in the concussion protocol. Next Sunday’s Week 8 matchup with L.A. will determine who gets out of last place in the AFC West. 
Next game: vs. Chargers

AFC North 

Steelers 6-0
Ravens 5-1 
Browns 5-2
Bengals 1-5-1

Steelers: Pittsburgh was able to stay undefeated on the year and hand Tennessee its first loss of 2020 in a thrilling win down in Nashville. After going up 27-7, the Steelers saw the Titans claw back into this game and nearly send it to overtime, but kicker Stephen Gostkowski missed the 45-yard field goal in the final seconds. 
Next game: at Baltimore

Ravens: Baltimore was on a bye in Week 7 but now has a massive game against the Steelers coming up. If Lamar Jackson and company are able to hand Pittsburgh its first loss of the season, they’d not only move to 6-1 on the year but also be in sole possession of first place in the division thanks to the head-to-head tiebreaker. 
Next game: vs. Steelers

Browns: Cleveland narrowly escaped Cincinnati with a win in Week 7 as Baker Mayfield was able to connect with Donovan Peoples-Jones with just 11 seconds remaining. While the Browns are still in the thick of the AFC playoff picture and the division, they’ll go the rest of the way without star receiver Odell Beckham Jr., who suffered a season-ending ACL tear in the midst of the win. 
Next game: vs. Raiders

Bengals: While the Bengals have just one win on the year, the development of No.1 overall pick Joe Burrow should be the focus. He was once again sensational in Week 7, throwing for 406 yards and totaling four touchdowns. Clearly, he’s a piece they can build around going into 2021 and beyond. With three more games against divisional opponents (two against Pittsburgh and one against Baltimore), Cincy could also play spoiler for how the AFC North shakes out. 
Next game: vs. Titans

AFC South 

Titans 5-1
Colts 4-2
Texans 1-6 
Jaguars 1-6

Titans: Mike Vrabel’s club was hit with its first loss of the season after Stephen Gostkowski’s 45-yard field goal with 19 seconds left in the game couldn’t force overtime against Pittsburgh. While it was handed the loss, you do have to light the fight that Tennessee showed, rallying from a 27-7 deficit to make it a ballgame. They’ll look to stay atop the division when traveling to Cincinnati to face the Bengals in Week 8. 
Next game: at Bengals

Colts: Indy was on a bye, but should love the developments of Week 7 after the Titans fell to the Steelers inching them closer to that top spot in the AFC South. Philip Rivers and company will travel to Detroit to take on a Lions team fresh off a dramatic last-second win over the Falcons
Next game: at Lions

Texans: Houston had no answer for Davante Adams and the Packers offense as the wide receiver put up 196 yards in a 35-20 win that was much more of a blowout than the final score suggests. They head into the bye with one of the worst records in the league and will face Jacksonville in Week 9 to see if they can climb out of last place in the division. 
Next game: at Jaguars (Week 9)

Jaguars: James Robinson was impressive for the Jaguars in Week 7 with 119 rushing yards, but it wasn’t enough to beat the Chargers in Los Angeles. When they come out of the bye, they’ll host the 1-6 Texans in a game that will do more for the 2021 NFL Draft board and the division standings. 
Next game: vs. Texans (Week 9)

NFC East 

Eagles 2-4-1
Washington 2-5
Cowboys 2-5
Giants 1-6 

Eagles: Carson Wentz and the Eagles were able to pull out a last-minute win over the New York Giants on Thursday Night Football and move into first place in the lowly NFC East. They’ll look to add a bit more cushion to that lead and inch closer to .500 when they host the Cowboys, who may be without quarterback Andy Dalton, who is now in concussion protocol. 
Next game: vs. Cowboys

Washington: Thanks to a dominant front seven, Washington does have a legit chance to make a run at the division crown and win the NFC East for the first time since 2015. Ron Rivera’s club dominated the Cowboys to the tune of a 25-3 rout where they allowed just 142 yards of total offense. 
Next game: vs. Giants (Week 9)

Cowboys: Dallas’ quarterback situation going forward is once again in flux after Andy Dalton left Week 7 due to a concussion. His status for Week 8 is unclear in what is set to be a pivotal game against the Eagles where the Cowboys could end up in first place in the NFC East if they come away with a win. 
Next game: at Eagles

Giants: You’d think that a 1-6 record would put you out of contention in the division race, but because it’s the NFC East, New York is still in spitting distance. That said, they do appear to be the least talented of the bunch, despite Daniel Jones flashing his potential at times. The road doesn’t get much easier for the Giants, however, as they’ll face Tom Brady and the Buccaneers on Monday Night Football next week. 
Next game: vs. Buccaneers

NFC West 

Seahawks 5-1
Cardinals 5-2
Rams 5-2
49ers 4-3

Seahawks: Despite a dominant display by Russell Wilson and Tyler Lockett, Seattle was handed its first loss of the season after the Cardinals were able to pull out the overtime win on Sunday Night Football. Given how deep this division is, the Seahawks find themselves in a rather important game in Week 8 when they host the 49ers. Not only is San Francisco trying to claw back into the division race, but a Seattle loss would knock them out of first place thanks to Arizona now owning the head-to-head tiebreaker. 
Next game: vs. 49ers

Cardinals: Arizona can rest up after that thrilling win over the Seahawks and could conceivably come out of the bye in first place in the division. They’ll come out of this week-long break in Week 9 where they’ll host the Dolphins. 
Next game: vs. Dolphins (Week 9)

Rams: L.A. was able to handle the Bears on Monday Night Football to keep up with a tightly contested NFC West. This win keeps them above the 49ers and right in the thick of the Cardinals and Seahawks, who also have five wins on the year. 
Next game: at Dolphins

49ers: They blew out the Patriots in Foxborough. Jimmy Garoppolo threw for 277 yards against his former club while the 49ers totaled 197 yards and four touchdowns on the ground. Week 8 will prove to be a massive game for Kyle Shanahan’s team as they’ll face the Seahawks with a chance to get themselves back into the conversation in the NFC West. 

Next game: at Seahawks

NFC North 

Packers 5-1 
Bears 5-2
Lions 3-3
Vikings 1-5

Packers: Even without Aaron Jones, Green Bay’s offense continues to light up the scoreboard. Davante Adams had 13 receptions for 196 yards and two touchdowns against the Texans in a blowout win in Houston. Thanks to the Rams defeating the Bears on Monday Night Football, the Packers sit in first place in the division and have a chance to extend that lead when they host the 1-5 Vikings at Lambeau Field. 
Next game: vs. Vikings

Bears: Chicago’s offense couldn’t get off the ground against the Rams on Monday night and, as a result, have now fallen out of first place in the division and are now looking up at Green Bay. They’ll have a tough challenge in Week 8 as they try to keep pace with the Packers when they face the Saints
Next game: vs. Saints

Lions: Matthew Stafford connected with T.J. Hockenson with no time remaining for a touchdown to tie the game at 22 points and a Matt Prater extra point brought Detroit the Week 7 win and a .500 record. They’ll look to build off that comeback against a stout Colts defense in Week 8. 
Next game: vs. Colts

Vikings: Minnesota looks like a team in transition after a 1-5 record heading into the bye last week. The road doesn’t get easier for them after the week-long break as they’ll have to head into Lambeau Field to face the red-hot Packers.
Next game: at Packers

NFC South 

Buccaneers 5-2
Saints 4-2 
Panthers 3-4
Falcons 1-6 

Buccaneers: Tampa Bay is arguably the hottest team in the NFL at this point after Tom Brady was able to total five touchdowns in a blowout win over the Raiders in Las Vegas. Not only do they stand alone atop the NFC South, but the team is looking at a layup again against New York and is primed to add Antonio Brown to the offense. 
Next game: at Giants

Saints: Even without Michael Thomas and Emmanuel Sanders, Drew Brees was able to total three touchdowns in New Orleans’ win over the Panthers. That allowed New Orleans to not only stay on Tampa Bay’s heels but avoided a situation where the Panthers could leap them in the standings. 
Next game: at Lions

Panthers: Carolina fell to the Saints in Week 7, but could be on the verge of getting a boost on offense as Christian McCaffrey has returned to practice. While it appears like the Bucs and Saints will be duking it out for the division crown, All-Pro back could be a key factor in the Panthers making a push for a Wild Card spot. 
Next game: vs. Falcons

Falcons: Atlanta just invents new ways to lose. After Todd Gurley accidentally scored a touchdown, the Lions were able to score a last-second touchdown to move the Falcons to 1-6 on the year. At this point, Arthur Blanks’s team is simply playing out the rest of the schedule and determining who is part of the long-term plan. 
Next game: at Panthers





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