NFL power rankings: Cleveland Browns still highly regarded after loss to Kansas City Chiefs

Akron Beacon Journal

On Sunday, the Browns once again positioned themselves to beat the powerhouse Kansas City Chiefs.

But much like the divisional-round playoff game between the two, the Browns fell short. This time it was a 33-29 loss following a late interception by quarterback Baker Mayfield. 

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After the game, Mayfield told reporters he was attempting to throw the ball away. Instead, it ended up in the hands of Chiefs cornerback Mike Hughes.

The interception overshadowed a game by Mayfield in which he completed 75 percent of his pass attempts for 321 yards.

Now at 0-1, are the Browns getting similarly overshadowed in NFL power rankings? Here's a look at where the Browns rank on different sites: 

USA Today, Nate Davis

Browns ranking: No. 4 | Link

"Their past two games have been at Arrowhead Stadium, where they've given Chiefs all they can handle. Now imagine if Cleveland had Odell Beckham Jr. in the lineup ... or merely a punter who could field a snap."

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ESPN, NFL Nation

Browns ranking: No. 6 | Link

In their writeup, ESPN and reporter Jake Trotter, put the spotlight on Browns rookie wide receiver Anthony Schwartz. Here's what Trotter had to say about the third-round pick: 

"The third-round pick out of Auburn had a nice debut after battling a hamstring injury in training camp. He caught three passes for 69 yards and also had a 17-yard rush off a reverse. He wasn't able to come up with a third-down grab downfield in the fourth quarter that might have been the difference in the 33-29 loss."

Browns takeaways: Baker Mayfield laments late letdowns, addresses team after Week 1 loss, Dan Hanzus 

Browns ranking: No. 8 | Link

Despite losing, the Browns didn't move up or down in Hanzus' rankings. And he summed up things pretty well writing, "There's a version of Hell where the Browns are forced to play the Chiefs in Arrowhead for all of eternity. Cleveland now has two painful losses to Kansas City in the space of nine months, both games sprinkled with moments of great optimism but ending with the cruel amputation of hope."

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CBS Sports, Pete Prisco

Browns ranking: No. 12 | Link

In Prisco's rankings, the Browns fell from No. 7 down to No. 12 after Week 1. Here's what Prisco had to say: "They have to learn how to win the big games. That's the difference between the Browns and the Chiefs."

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The Ringer, Danny Kelly

Browns ranking: No. 5 | Link

What about a morale victor for Cleveland? In Kelly's rankings the Chiefs are No. 2 after beating the Browns. No moral victories? Fine. Kelly does his rankings in tiers. The first tier he calls "The Top Shelf" and it includes the Buccaneers, Chiefs, Seahawks and Rams. The Browns are the first team in Kelly's "The Contenders" tier.

Yahoo! Sports, Frank Schwab

Browns ranking: No. 11 | Link

For Schwab the Browns dipped on spot after starting at No. 10 in the preseason. What's the deal? "I don't want to be too hard on the Browns, but they have graduated from moral victories," Schwab wrote. 

New York Daily News, Ryan Dunleavy

Browns ranking: No. 4 | Link

In Dunleavy's rankings, Browns punter Jamie Gillan gets the blame for the loss. "That’s twice in their last two games that they could’ve beaten the Chiefs – only to fail to make one more play," Dunleavy writes. "This time, a dropped punt snap doomed a legit Super Bowl contender."

Sports Illustrated, Connor Orr

Browns ranking: No. 5 | Link

Orr remains optimistic about the Browns writing, "While bounces of the ball often define a season, one botched punt snap should not overshadow the fact that this team is loaded and will win the AFC North."

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