NFL Power Rankings: Rams on the rise; Vikings, Raiders biggest fallers in Week 4

During my summer training-camp trip, I chatted with Los Angeles Rams quarterback Jared Goff. We talked about his development, how much he liked the new offense under first-year coach Sean McVay, his confident demeanor and many other things.

As he walked away, I remember telling him that this would be a building year and that next year would be the year the Rams would compete for a playoff spot.

Wrong.

The Rams are 3-1, fresh off an impressive road victory over the Dallas Cowboys on Sunday. Goff is playing at a high level, the running game is working and they are winning despite the defense still not being up to par. The Rams’ three victories have come against the Indianapolis Colts, San Francisco 49ers and Cowboys, three teams with a combined record of 3-9, so you have to temper the enthusiasm some.

But the Rams have been a disaster for a decade, so it’s not hard to understand the excitement.

We will learn a lot more about the Rams next week when they play host to the Seattle Seahawks in a big early-season division game. Seattle has been the king of the division, but the Rams have beaten them three consecutive times at home.

Those Rams teams won with defense. This Rams team is winning with offense. In addition to Goff playing well, Todd Gurley is back to his 2015 form and the offensive line is much improved.

That’s why the Rams and their 3-1 record are up to the 11th spot in my Power Rankings this week. If they beat Seattle next week, they would be a top-10 team and have the look of a playoff team.

Not bad for a team that I thought was a year away.

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