Football

Raiders enjoy slight climb in NFL power rankings roundup

Oakland Raiders defensive end Khalil Mack (52) pressures Carolina Panthers quarterback Cam Newton (1) in the second quarter during an NFL football game, Sunday November 27, 2016 in Oakland.
Oakland Raiders defensive end Khalil Mack (52) pressures Carolina Panthers quarterback Cam Newton (1) in the second quarter during an NFL football game, Sunday November 27, 2016 in Oakland. pkitagaki@sacbee.com

The only poll that stood between the Raiders and an average ranking of 2.8 this week, was a No. 5 assigned to them by USA Today. That 2.8 would have been possible if the Raiders were ranked third. Can’t imagine the 9-2 Raiders are worried too much about that.

Despite the lone ‘low’ mark this week, the Raiders still rose to an average ranking of 3.2, up slightly from last week’s 3.8. As they have for weeks, the Raiders, who came back to defeat the Panthers 35-32, easily lead California’s other NFL teams in the five polls sampled here (ESPN, Bleacher Report, USA Today, CBS Sports and The Associated Press).

Keep your eyes on the Chargers (17.6), who rose an average of 5.2 spots following their 21-13 road win over the Texans.

Following a 49-21 road loss to the Saints that the Rams can’t blame on rookie quarterback Jared Goff, they fell slightly to a 26.6 average ranking.

The 49ers, who made things interesting in a 31-24 road loss to the Dolphins, rose to 29th in USA Today and improved from a 30.8 to a 30.6. They’ll bring an 10-game losing streak into Chicago (2-9) this week.

Sorting the data:

Raiders

Average rank: 3.2

Average change: +0.6

High/low: 2/5

From USA Today (No. 5): “Derek Carr may not study his playbook by light of the jukebox, but how much would Al Davis have extolled the toughness he showed Sunday?”

Chargers

Average rank: 17.6

Average change: +5.2

High/low: 15/21

From ESPN (No. 15): “They are 3-1 against the AFC South this season and 2-5 against all other divisions, including 1-3 against the rest of the AFC West.”

Rams

Average rank: 26.6

Average change: -0.6

High/low: 25/27

From CBS Sports (No. 27): “Jared Goff did some really good things against the Saints. That gives them hope for the future.”

49ers

Average rank: 30.6

Average change: +0.2

High/low: 29/31

From USA Today (No. 29): “Colin Kaepernick is starting to commit ugly turnovers on political front, but his quarterbacking has drastically improved … .”

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