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Week Eight power rankings

After starting 0-3, the Houston Texans have been on a roll as they've racked up four straight wins, thanks to the play of Deshaun Watson and their fearless defense.

1. Rams (7-0; last week No. 1): It’s way too early to think about 16-0, especially with the Packers, Saints, and Chiefs looming.

2. Saints (5-1; No. 2): The next two games -- Vikings and Rams -- could be the difference between securing a bye and fighting for a wild-card berth.

3. Patriots (5-2; No. 3): With Derek Anderson at quarterback, the Patriots should only fear flying objects other than footballs when they return to Bills.

4. Chiefs (6-1; No. 4): A second straight slide to 6-6 is looking less and less likely.

5. Chargers (5-2; No. 6): An all-L.A. Super Bowl isn’t out of the question.

6. Vikings (4-2-1; No. 8): The offense needs to become much more consistent to beat the likes of the Saints and the Lions over the next two weekends.

7. Ravens (4-3; No. 5): Justin Tucker rhymes with a four-syllable phrase that plenty of Ravens fans were surely shouting when that extra point sailed wide of the post.

8. Packers (3-2-1; No. 9): The defense needs to step up, or the Rams may score 50.

9. Steelers (3-2-1; No. 10): The Steelers secured the rare bye-week trifecta, with every other team in their division losing.

10. Washington (4-2; No. 13): Don’t be shocked if/when Washington upsets the Rams in January.

11. Panthers (4-2; No. 14): Don’t be shocked if/when Carolina upsets the Rams in January.

12. Eagles (3-4; No. 11): Don’t be shocked if this team isn’t playing in January.

13. Bengals (4-3; No. 7): The Bengals would very much like to no longer be asked to face the loser of a Chiefs-Patriots game the following week.

14. Texans (4-3; No. 19): More than a few Texans defenders are likely looking forward to the chance to put their full body weight on former Texans quarterback Brock Osweiler.

15. Lions (3-3; No. 20): Kerryon Johnson could lift the Lions to a division title.

16. Dolphins (4-3; No. 12): It’s starting to feel a lot like 2017 for the Dolphins.

17. Bears (3-3; No. 15): With the Jets and Bills up next, 5-3 is realistic. Which would have seemed unrealistic in August.

18. Seahawks (3-3; No. 18): Rested and ready and motivated to honor their late owner, the Seahawks could be one of those teams that gets hot at the right time.

19. Falcons (3-4; No. 21): With five home games played in seven weeks, the Falcons will need to do much better than 0-2 on the road after the bye week.

20. Buccaneers (3-3; No. 25): Now could be the time to get value for Ryan Fitzpatrick.

21. Cowboys (3-4; No. 16): As the old saying goes, desperate times call for giving up a first-round pick for a receiver who has underperformed for most of the last two seasons.

22. Jaguars (3-4; No. 17): This is the closest the Jaguars may come to playing a playoff game in London.

23. Browns (2-4-1; No. 22): This season is playing out perfectly for G.M. John Dorsey; the team is improved, but not so improved that it won’t be able to change coaches.

24. Broncos (3-4; No. 28): On Thursday night, the Broncos were like the kid who suddenly brings home straight As after consistently getting Cs.

25. Titans (3-4; No. 23): At some point, a difficult conversation will need to be had regarding Marcus Mariota as the future of the franchise.

26. Jets (3-4; No. 24): The 20-point margin is misleading; the Jets played well against Minnesota and should feel good about their progress.

27. Colts (2-5; No. 29): A win against the Raiders would set the table for a bye and an intriguing three-game home stand that could put the Colts to the fringes of contention.

28. Bills (2-5; No. 26): On Monday night, we’ll be reminded why the Bills don’t get many Monday night games.

29. 49ers (1-6; No. 27): Hello, Nick Bosa.

30. Raiders (1-5; No. 31): Goodbye, Derek Carr.

31. Giants (1-6; No. 32): Goodbye, Eli Manning.

32. Cardinals (1-6; No. 30): Hello, Jim Harbaugh.