"Three & Out" is a weekly feature where we highlight three teams that dropped as well as three teams that moved on up in the ScouTurf team rankings formula based on their performance from their previous game.
We watch every NFL game from the previous weekend before making an assessment, and these are this week's big winners and losers:
3-1 and sitting on top of a strong AFC North division, these guys just keep winning. The offense is clicking under coordinator Bill Lazor and Andy Dalton seems like he's finally striking up some chemistry with wide receivers not named A.J. Green. Most impressively, they've been able to move the football without running back Joe Mixon and center Billy Price, both of whom are expected to re-join the team in the next few weeks. On the other side, the defensive line has been applying consistent pressure and Vontaze Burfict returns from a four game suspension this week. The Bengals are only getting started...
Mitchell read the tweets. As fun as it has been for Bears fans watching Khalil Mack terrorize offensive linemen over the first four weeks, one sobering realization has floated into their mind that has brought them down to Earth - they passed on Patrick Mahomes for Mitchell Trubisky. While revisionist history will still most likely side with Mahomes as the better pick, Da Bears have to be encouraged by Trubisky's six touchdown performance against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Hopefully a top fantasy performance in a week where it seemingly felt like every quarterback eclipsed 400 passing yards will give Trubisky some confidence heading into the second quarter of the season.
Kansas City Chiefs
Again? Again. Back-to-back appearances on the "three up" column is much deserved after overcoming a ten point fourth quarter deficit against a division rival on Monday Night Football. Quarterback Patrick Mahomes has only made five starts in his young NFL career, but he's already playing like he's made at least fifty, taking care of the football and overcoming long distance, high pressure situations with regularity - even if it means throwing the ball left handed. The Broncos defense was the Chiefs' first test against a top ten ranked defense in our formula rankings, but this week they get the top dog, er, cat, in the Jacksonville Jaguars. The Chiefs may still put up some points, but this may be the first game of the season where their track meet Big 12 offense can't overcome the poor play of their defense.
The Eagles were the biggest bummer of the week, turning in one of the most disappointing defensive performances allowing three fourth down conversions on one drive despite having a three point lead in overtime against the Tennessee Titans. They'll still be fine in regards to clinching a playoff spot, but all of a sudden, a repeat division championship seems murkier with a much-improved Redskins team waiting in the weeds. I would say they'll be better once they get Alshon Jeffery and Jay Ajayi back, but they had the pair (plus a less-rusty Carson Wentz) this past week and still lost. The question for Jim Schwartz now becomes what do they do to replace the injured Rodney McLeod at the safety position?
Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Tampa was the hottest team in the league across the first three weeks, but their momentum has come to a screeching halt after a 38-point mutiny by the Chicago Bears. Mike Smith's passing defense is a disaster, and we have to start having a conversation about why general manager Jason Licht still has a job. Second round pick wasted on a kicker who is no longer on the roster and passed on a generational safety talent in Derwin James for a nose tackle who has been injured all of 2018. Maybe Vea becomes a very good player, but if you think James wouldn't make a bigger impact on this pass defense, buddy,,,
Life comes at you fast, Miami. Swimming in the "three up" column as recently as last week, the Dolphins got hooked by the Patriots in a game that could have seen them take an enormous two game advantage over the rest of the AFC East. All is not lost, but you would have liked to have seem a better effort from Adam Gase and his team just as fans were starting to feel like those 38-7 blowouts were behind them. The Dolphins schedule doesn't get any easier this week as they square off against the red hot Andy Dalton and the 3-1 Bengals.
Here are the ScouTurf roster rankings following week four: