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NFL Power Rankings, Week 6: ESPN Gives 49ers, Raiders Sizable Bumps

ESPN released their week six NFL power rankings and both the San Francisco 49ers and the Oakland Raiders are getting a bit more respect following significant wins for both teams. The 49ers had the biggest jump of the week at ESPN, rising from No. 16 to No. 9 and the Raiders rose from No. 15 to No. 11.

The 49ers were 3-1 entering the week but were considered near the bottom of the 3-1 teams in part because they were riding close victories to that record. Wins are wins, but in terms of assessing a team compared to the rest of the league, there remained some question marks based on the quality of the wins. The 48-3 shellacking of the Buccaneers cleared up some of those concerns. The 49ers still have a lot of work to do in the coming weeks, but they appear to be on the right path.

The Raiders were 2-2 entering the week and had been beaten down pretty badly by the New England Patriots the week before in Oakland. The Raiders went into Houston not necessarily in a must-win situation, but needing a win to maintain their status in the AFC playoff race. Al Davis passed away the day before the game and the Raiders proceeded to win an inspired and emotional game for their legendary owner. It was big both for the emotional reasons, but also for the long term playoff picture reasons.

Here is the top 11 via ESPN:

1. Green Bay Packers
2. New England Patriots
3. New Orleans Saints
4. Detroit Lions
5. Baltimore Ravens
6. Buffalo Bills
7. San Diego Chargers
8. Pittsburgh Steelers
9. San Francisco 49ers
10. Washington Redskins
11. Oakland Raiders