Herd Hierarchy: Jaguars, Bengals make the cut; Niners remain No. 1

Week 5 of the NFL season revealed that records aren’t always an effective indicator in determining the value of teams around the league — at least in Colin Cowherd’s eyes.

In the latest edition of “Herd Hierarchy,” Cowherd analyzed multiple teams that he believes are better than their records reflect, as well as his top four Super Bowl contenders. 

Let’s get into it. 

10. Cincinnati Bengals (Last week: Unranked)

Overall Record: 2-3 | Last Week: Bengals won 34-20 @ Arizona Cardinals 

Cowherd’s thoughts: “Listen, this team the last four years has struggled in September and early October. Why? Because Joe Burrow has been hurt. And then he gets healthy, and they end up in Super Bowls and winning 10 of 11 games. You don’t want to face Cincinnati.” 

Up Next: Bengals vs. Seattle Seahawks (1:00 p.m. ET) 

Seattle Seahawks


Cincinnati Bengals


9. Los Angeles Chargers (Last Week: Unranked) 

Overall Record: 2-2 | Last Week: Bye

Cowherd’s thoughts: “I don’t love the coach. I’ll say this though: Between Herbert and their weapons, they are one of two teams to score 24-plus points in every game. They had the Miami Dolphins beat [in Week 1].”

Up Next: Chargers vs. Dallas Cowboys on Monday night (8:15 p.m. ET) 

Dallas Cowboys


Los Angeles Chargers


8. Detroit Lions (Last Week: 9) 

Overall Record: 4-1 | Last Week: Lions won 42-24 vs Carolina Panthers 

Cowherd’s thoughts: “Listen, they’re 12-3 over their last 15 games. [They have] a 4-1 record, [which is] their best start in like 12 years. There’s a lot to like about them. By the way, Jared Goff, someone who I have defended for years, leads the NFL in big plays this year with 23.”

Up Next: Lions @ Tampa Bay Buccaneers (4:25 p.m. ET on FOX and the FOX Sports app)

Detroit Lions


Tampa Bay Buccaneers


7. Seattle Seahawks (Last Week: 8)

Overall Record: 3-1 | Last Week: Bye

Cowherd’s thoughts: “Geno [Smith makes] fewer mistakes; only one giveaway on the NFL season for Seattle and [their] offense [averages] 29 a game. … Geno is completing 68% of his throws. He doesn’t make a lot of big mistakes and [head coach] Pete Carroll loves that.”

Up Next: Panthers @ Miami Dolphins (1:00 p.m. ET) 

Carolina Panthers


Miami Dolphins


6. Buffalo Bills (Last Week: 2)

Overall Record: 4-1 | Last Week: Bills lost 25-20 vs Jacksonville Jaguars 

Cowherd’s thoughts: “I think they’re out of the Super Bowl hunt with [Matt] Milano and Tre‘Davious White out. They’re not the same defense [without them]. Those are their two great defensive players. … But, they still sack the quarterback, they still take the ball away, and they have Josh Allen.” 

Up Next: Bills vs. New York Giants (8:20 p.m. ET)

New York Giants


Buffalo Bills


5. Jacksonville Jaguars (Last Week: Unranked)

Overall Record: 3-2 | Last Week: Jaguars won 25-20 vs Buffalo Bills

Cowherd’s thoughts: “Here’s the thing about them: [The] offense [is] top 10 [and] would be higher except for all the drops in the first three weeks. Their defense [has] 11 takeaways, [which is] the second-most in the NFL. … I think Jacksonville is gonna now start racing and peeling off Ws.” 

Up Next: Jaguars vs. Indianapolis Colts (1:00 p.m. ET) 

Indianapolis Colts


Jacksonville Jaguars


4. Miami Dolphins (Last Week: 4)

Overall Record: 4-1 | Last Week: Dolphins won 31-16 vs New York Giants 

Cowherd’s thoughts: “They have the No. 1 offense, the three fastest players, three games with over 500 yards, [while] the rest of the NFL has zero combined. Tyreek Hill [is] just one of many guys who you can’t catch. I think they’re clever [and] I think they’re a little ahead of the league offensively, [but] I do worry about their defense.”

Up Next: Dolphins vs. Carolina Panthers (1:00 p.m. ET) 

Carolina Panthers


Miami Dolphins


3. Philadelphia Eagles (Last Week: 5)

Overall Record: 5-0 | Last Week: Eagles won 23-14 vs Los Angeles Rams 

Cowherd’s thoughts: “Listen, four straight games with 400-plus yards. [However], I still think they’re trying to find their identity. And, Jalen Hurts [has] four picks [in the] last four games. … [The] Rams [game] was a great example. They completely dominated [them], but couldn’t put it away until midway through the fourth when they were clearly the superior team.” 

Up Next: Eagles vs. New York Jets (4:25 p.m. ET on FOX and the FOX Sports app) 

Philadelphia Eagles


New York Jets


2. Kansas City Chiefs (Last Week: 3)

Overall Record: 4-1 | Last Week: Chiefs won 27-20 vs Minnesota Vikings

Cowherd’s thoughts: “[They are] 4-0 since Travis [Kelce] and Chris Jones returned. [They have] the best third-down offense in the sport, [thanks to head coach] Andy Reid and [Patrick] Mahomes, [and they have] the most talented defense in terms of speed and expense.”

Up Next: Chiefs vs. Denver Broncos on Thursday night (8:15 p.m. ET) 

Denver Broncos


Kansas City Chiefs


1. San Francisco 49ers (Last Week: 1)

Overall Record: 5-0 | Last Week: 49ers won vs Dallas Cowboys 42-10

Cowherd’s thoughts: “I mean, San Francisco just looks different [from] everybody in football. … They don’t beat you, they punish you. They don’t beat you, they humiliate you. And, they have a chip on their shoulder from last year.”

Up Next: 49ers @ Cleveland Browns (1:00 p.m. ET on FOX and FOX Sports app)

San Francisco 49ers


Cleveland Browns


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