2024 NFL power rankings: Cowboys free-falling, Bears surging after draft

The first post-NFL Draft NFL Power Rankings are finally here
2024 NFL Power Rankings
2024 NFL Power Rankings / Richard Rodriguez/GettyImages
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20. Pittsburgh Steelers

After what we saw from Russell Wilson with the Denver Broncos, what are we supposed to make of the Pittsburgh Steelers? They traded away Diontae Johnson this offseason and while Pittsburgh still has a good defense, it's tough to see this team winning more than 8 or 9 games at a maximum with Wilson/Justin Fields at the helm.

The Steelers are obviously banking on the unstoppable force winning out against the immovable object. Father time has been coming for Wilson, but Mike Tomlin having a .500 or above record is an inevitability. Is Wilson going to work well with Arthur Smith? Will the Steelers be able to have a dominant enough ground game to support him?

19. New York Jets

Everything with the New York Jets depends on the health of quarterback Aaron Rodgers. This team obviously has one of the best defenses in the league, and they were in playoff contention for so much of last season because of that unit.

If Rodgers can stay healthy, you expect the Jets to be legitimate contenders in the AFC East but what are they really going to get for him? This is a 40-year old quarterback coming off of an Achilles injury, one of the worst possible injuries you can have at an older age.

18. Jacksonville Jaguars

I'm going to give the Jacksonville Jaguars the benefit of the doubt after last season. What a monumental collapse. This team was well-positioned to win the AFC South, but a horrendous collapse prevented them from making the postseason.

Not only that, but everything that went down with Trevor Lawrence last year sort of raised questions about whether or not he's truly an upper-tier QB in the league right now. That might be a hot take or overreaction, but Lawrence was not himself last season, and certainly not the guy we saw in 2022. Jacksonville is going to need him to take that step forward again to truly hang with Houston right now in the AFC South.

17. Denver Broncos

It's easy to forget based on the way this team is talked about, but the Denver Broncos won 8 games last season and they were inches away from winning potentially three more. Sean Payton put his stamp on this roster rather quickly, getting rid of Russell Wilson in the 2024 offseason and taking the biggest dead cap hit for any individual player in league history. By a wide margin.

But the Broncos weren't exactly being dragged to eight wins last year by Russell Wilson. This team has slowly but surely improved over the course of the offseason and will be interesting with Bo Nix at the helm.