Which team is the best team in the NFL? It's hard to answer that question until after Week 17. But we can't wait until January to start speculating on that. For now, we know there are at least degrees of good and bad teams, and what better way to assess that than with power rankings.
The NFC is top heavy. The Cardinals, Packers, Panthers and Seahawks have the important quarterback question answered and, more importantly, they have talented, deep position groups all over the roster. Minnesota fit that bill before the Teddy Bridgewater injury, and the roster holes start to get bigger and bigger as you go down the list for the rest of the NFC.
In the AFC, it's the Patriots followed by a small handful of teams that are very good, but have serious questions to answer.
ROSTER CUTS & PRACTICE SQUADS
HERE ARE ALL THE CUTS: Tracking all the 2016 NFL roster cuts for the 53-man deadline. Final rosters for the regular season were set over Labor Day weekend.
PRACTICE SQUADS: Tracking all of the 2016 NFL practice squad signings and waiver claims. We’re keeping track of all of the practice squad additions and waiver transactions around the NFL.
SAM BRADFORD TRADE FALLOUT
VIKES WANT TO WIN NOW: The Sam Bradford trade proves the Vikings really think they can win the Super Bowl. With Adrian Peterson’s age and a team without many holes on the roster, now is Minnesota’s time to make a run.
PHILLY'S WEIRD OFFSEASON: The Bradford trade puts a bow on a wacky but productive Eagles offseason. The Eagles received a first-round pick for a stopgap quarterback, finishing the team’s mission to erase Chip Kelly’s legacy.
FANS REACT: Here’s how Vikings and Eagles fans reacted to the Bradford trade. Feelings were ... mixed.
COLIN KAEPERNICK'S PROTEST
HERO: Colin Kaepernick is doing what heroes do. Why do we cheer when fictional heroes take a stand but chastise athletes who do it in real life?
OTHERS ARE JOINING HIM: Jeremy Lane plans to keep sitting for the national anthem. Lane plans to keep sitting in support of 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick and his stated reasons for not standing. Six fifth graders take a knee during Pledge of Allegiance, follow Kaepernick’s lead.
KAEP JERSEYS FLYING OFF THE SHELVES: More Colin Kaepernick merchandise sold in last week than previous eight months combined. Non-49ers fans, and even non-football fans are getting in on the action. J Cole, Trey Songz wear Kaepernick jerseys at separate concerts.
WENTZ WILL START: Eagles name Carson Wentz starting quarterback. Philadelphia will move forward with the No. 2 overall pick under center in Week 1.
BREES, SAINTS TALKING CONTRACT: The Saints and Drew Brees have resumed contract talks. Brees is said to be seeking a four- or five-year deal worth as much as $100 million. The real news here is that he thinks he can play another five year. He's 37 now.
NINERS DUMP MILLER: 49ers release Bruce Miller following arrest. The 49ers have released tight end Bruce Miller following his arrest on assault charges. Miller was arrested Sunday evening (or early Monday morning) following a bizarre incident in which he attacked a man and his father at a San Francisco hotel.