The Seahawks are ranked as high as No. 2 and as low as No. 9 in our weekly survey. Their opponent Sunday, Atlanta, is ranked as high as No. 3 and as low as No. 7.

Share story

The Seahawks made a move in the standings during their bye week, taking sole possession of the NFC West’s top spot thanks to the Rams’ loss to the Bills, but they didn’t gain much ground in our latest survey of NFL power rankings.

In fact, many in this week’s survey of national media members ranked the Seahawks below their next opponent: the Atlanta Falcons, who are coming off a win over defending Super Bowl champion Denver.

Seattle (3-1) is ranked as high as No. 2 by Yahoo! Sports and as low as No. 9 by Fox Sports. Atlanta (4-1) is ranked as high as No. 3 in multiple power rankings and as low as No. 7 by the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

The Seahawks and Falcons meet at 1:25 p.m. Sunday at CenturyLink Field. Kickoff is at 1:25 p.m., and Fox (Ch. 13) has the telecast. The Seahawks are favored by six points.

Here’s our roundup of Week 6 NFL power rankings:

SEATTLE TIMES (Jayson Jenks)

Seahawks rank: 3 (4).

Seahawks comment: Can the Seahawks get the run game going? The Seahawks are 30th in yards per carry through five weeks.

Falcons rank: 5 (12).

Falcons comment: Falcons QB Matt Ryan leads the NFL in passing yards, but just as dangerous is Atlanta’s two-headed monster at running back.

Top 5: 1, Minnesota; 2, New England; 3, Seattle; 4, Green Bay; 5, Atlanta.

SI.COM (Chris Burke)

Seahawks rank: 7 (6).

Seahawks comment: An early bye week can make later portions of the schedule all the more grueling, but Seattle needed to get Russell Wilson and Tyler Lockett healthy. The Rams losing during the Seahawks’ time off was an added bonus. The NFC West is theirs to lose now, even more so than it was before.

Falcons rank: 3 (11).

Falcons comment: Shredding the Saints’ defense, or even the current version of Carolina’s defense, is one thing. Moving the ball almost at will, on the road, against Denver is on another level entirely. Maybe the Falcons cannot maintain this pace, but other than “they fell apart in 2015,” there’s not much evidence to suggest an offensive slide is coming.

Top 5: 1, Minnesota; 2, New England; 3, Atlanta; 4, Pittsburgh; 5, Denver.

MMQB.COM’S FINE 15 (Jenny Vrentas)

Seahawks rank: 7 (7).

Seahawks comment: No easing back in after the bye. The Seahawks are preparing for a red-hot Falcons team that is fresh off defeating the defending Super Bowl champs.

Falcons rank: 4 (8).

Falcons comment: We know what happened to the Falcons last season. They started 5-0, only to finish 8-8. But a road win over the Broncos is a pretty good assurance that this year’s hot start is not fool’s gold. The best news for the Falcons is that they seem to have found a pass rush, led by Vic Beasley.

Top 5: 1, Minnesota; 2, New England; 3, Pittsburgh; 4, Atlanta; 5, Denver.


Seahawks rank: 5 (2).

Seahawks comment: The Seahawks are 3-1 and have allowed the third-fewest points per game, so Pete Carroll’s team is sitting pretty. However, Falcons QB Matt Ryan has given Carroll’s defenses trouble in the past. The Seahawks are 1-3 (including playoffs) against Atlanta under Carroll, allowing 26.0 points per game.

Falcons rank: 6 (8).

Falcons comment: The Falcons fell apart after a 5-0 start last season, but Dan Quinn’s 2016 squad seems poised for bigger and better things after defeating the defending champs in Denver in Week 5. A win in Seattle against Quinn’s former team this week would further solidify the Falcons’ claim as a top team.

Top 5: 1, Minnesota; 2, New England; 3, Pittsburgh; 4, Denver; 5, Seattle.

YAHOO! SPORTS (Frank Schwab)

Seahawks rank: 2 (3).

Seahawks comment: The Vikings are a very good team, and I assume most power rankings will have them No. 1 or 2 because they’re undefeated. And that’s fine. But if the Vikings and Seahawks played tomorrow on a neutral field, I’d pick the Seahawks. We haven’t seen close to the best of them yet on offense, because of injuries. But we started to see it in their last game, against the Jets.

Falcons rank: 4 (8).

Falcons comment: That was one heck of a victory at Denver. We have to look at the Falcons in a different way now. One aspect that was very positive was a breakout game from pass rusher Vic Beasley. In Beasley’s first 20 NFL games, the eighth overall pick of the 2015 draft had five sacks. He had 3.5 sacks in his 21st game. The Falcons desperately need him to keep that up.

Top 5: 1, New England; 2, Seattle; 3, Minnesota; 4, Atlanta; 5, Denver.


Seahawks rank: 7 (7).

Seahawks comment: Russell Wilson rested his gimpy legs, while Seattle moved atop NFC West standings. Bye weeks don’t get much better.

Falcons rank: 3 (9).

Falcons comment: Yes, it faced rookie QB making his first NFL start, but promising to see six sacks Sunday from D that had four in first four weeks.

Top 5: 1, New England; 2, Minnesota; 3, Atlanta; 4, Pittsburgh; 5, Denver.

NFL.COM (Elliot Harrison)

Seahawks rank: 3 (4).

Seahawks comment: Seattle was on a bye last week, allowing Seahawks fans to enjoy a Sunday free of serious stress about their offensive line. So given that unit’s previous struggles, why are the Seahawks not lower? The return of Germain Ifedi, the team’s top draft pick, has much to do with it. The rush totals weren’t great in Week 4 at New York, but even the Great Wall of Dallas couldn’t get Seahawks running backs to average 5 yards per carry against that Jets front. That said, there were also plenty of pass plays where Russell Wilson was getting more than enough time to throw. Look no further than the long touchdown to Tanner McEvoy (… whom nobody started in fantasy).

Falcons rank: 4 (10).

Falcons comment: What a showing. What. A. Showing. Tevin Coleman (163 scrimmage yards) and Devonta Freeman (123 scrimmage yards) sprinted, meandered, cut, curdoodled, spun and frolicked their way through the Broncos’ defense Sunday. They were like William Andrews and Gerald Riggs out there, circa 1983. Too dated a reference? Fine. How about a more recent callback, while staying in this division: ‘Member when Warrick Dunn and Mike Alstott were so difficult to stop on those Tony Dungy Bucs teams? Atlanta controlled the entire affair in Denver, partially due to fantastic play calling from Kyle Shanahan. Over the past two weeks, the Falcons have scored 71 points on the two Super Bowl combatants from last year.

Top 5: 1, Minnesota; 2, New England; 3, Seattle; 4, Atlanta; 5, Denver.

CBS SPORTS (Pete Prisco)

Seahawks rank: 7 (7).

Seahawks comment: They come off their bye with the Falcons coming to town. That won’t be easy. But they have the talent to slow that offense.

Falcons rank: 4 (11).

Falcons comment: That was an impressive road victory at Denver. The surprising part was how well the defense played.

Top 5: 1, Minnesota; 2, New England; 3, Green Bay; 4, Atlanta; 5, Denver.

FOX SPORTS (Cameron DaSilva)

Seahawks rank: 9 (7).

Seahawks comment: The Seahawks were off this week, but they’re unfortunate fallers due to wins by the Cowboys, Raiders and Falcons. The bye should help Russell Wilson and the ailing Seahawks recover, hopefully bringing them to full strength for Week 6.

Falcons rank: 6 (13).

Falcons comment: The Falcons have proved they’re legitimate contenders by beating the Broncos, but let’s not get too far ahead of ourselves. Atlanta started 6-1 last season only to finish 8-8. Additionally, the Falcons beat the Broncos without Trevor Siemian, which takes a bit away from the win. Still, they’re fast risers in the NFC.

Top 5: 1, Minnesota; 2, Pittsburgh; 3, Green Bay; 4, New England; 5, Denver.


Seahawks rank: 4 (6).

Seahawks comment: Soon, they’ll be vying for the top spot.

Falcons rank: 6 (8).

Falcons comment: Soon, they’ll be vying for the top spot. (Same comment for Seahawks, Falcons and No. 5 Steelers.)

Top 5: 1, Minnesota; 2, New England; 3, Green Bay; 4, Seattle; 5, Pittsburgh.

BLEACHER REPORT (Kristopher Knox)

Seahawks rank: 7 (10).

Seahawks comment: None.

Falcons rank: 3 (6).

Falcons comment: The Vikings might not be so great at running the ball, but the Falcons have figured out how to dominate the competition with their backfield. Atlanta went into Denver to face the previously undefeated Broncos in Week 5 and used running backs Tevin Coleman and Devonta Freeman to keep that championship defense off balance. The duo combined for 119 yards rushing, 167 yards receiving and two touchdowns. This is an offense that also boasts the great Julio Jones at receiver and a refreshed Matt Ryan at quarterback. The Falcons are rated second in overall offense by Pro Football Focus and are playing well enough on that side of the ball to match up with any team.  This week, the Falcons have to travel to Seattle to face another strong defense in the Seahawks. It’s another daunting challenge, but it’s one Atlanta has a realistic chance of overcoming. What makes this Falcons team different than the offensive-driven teams we’ve seen in Atlanta in years past is its pass rush. The Falcons are rated eighth in pass rush by Pro Football Focus, and the team’s ability to get after the quarterback gives it a chance in Seattle. A leaky offensive line is one of the few weaknesses on this Seattle team. It is rated 26th in pass blocking by Pro Football Focus. Atlanta’s offense is good enough to score in Seattle. If the defense can force some mistakes from Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson, the Falcons can steal this road game. This is a team reminiscent of Peyton Manning’s old Indianapolis Colts squads. It’s virtually unstoppable on offense and features just enough defense to be dangerous down the stretch.

Top 5: 1, Minnesota; 2, New England; 3, Atlanta; 4, Denver; 5, Pittsburgh.


Seahawks rank: 5 (4).

Seahawks comment: None.

Falcons rank: 3 (8).

Falcons comment: The Falcons are for real. Yes, the team was 5-0 last year before self-destructing, but things are different this time around. That 5-0 team edged bad teams and didn’t have any performances as impressive as the Falcons’ win over the Broncos. It remains to be seen if the pass rush that showed up in Denver was a mirage or if it’ll be a factor for the Falcons all season. If it is, Atlanta’s a team that’s going to be really tough to beat because the offense is capable of absolutely tearing apart anybody. A road trip against the Seattle Seahawks in Week 6 is another huge test, but the Falcons have looked ready for it and have an easier schedule down the stretch.

Top 5: 1, Minnesota; 2, New England; 3, Atlanta; 4, Denver; 5, Seattle.


Seahawks rank: 5.

Seahawks comment: The bye week gave QB Russell Wilson time to rest his sore knee. The Falcons really need some LBs to get healthy to deal with Wilson and TE Jimmy Graham.

Falcons rank: 7.

Falcons comment: I don’t care that the Broncos had at Paxton Lynch (above) at QB. It’s impressive that the Falcons went to Mile High and put that D on skates.

Top 5: 1, New England; 2, Minnesota; 3, Denver; 4, Green Bay; 5, Seattle.