NEW YORK (AP) — The Minnesota Vikings enjoyed their bye week as the only unbeaten team left in the NFL.
As they maintained their perfect mark, they remained on top of the latest AP Pro32 poll , which was released Tuesday.
The Vikings received six first-place votes for 378 points from balloting by media members who regularly cover the NFL.
The New England Patriots stayed at No. 2 after routing the Cincinnati Bengals 35-17 on Sunday. The Patriots received five first-place votes for 376 points.
“Tom Brady rolls again, and the 1-2 punch of tight ends Rob Gronkowski and Martellus Bennett is as good as there is in today’s NFL,” Newsday’s Bob Glauber said.
The Seattle Seahawks moved up a spot to No. 3 after their 26-24 win over the Atlanta Falcons. The Seahawks received the other first-place vote, finishing with 358 points.
Dak Prescott and the surging Dallas Cowboys moved up five spots and enter their bye week at No. 4.
“No one could possibly have foreseen how good Dak Prescott would have been,” Glauber said. “Now it may be impossible to keep him out of the lineup, even when Tony Romo is ready to play again.”
The Falcons moved up two spots to No. 5 despite losing a close game at CenturyLink Field when Seattle cornerback Richard Sherman grabbed Julio Jones’ right arm as the All-Pro receiver tried to catch a long pass over the middle and set up a potential game-winning field goal in the final 2 minutes.
“An official may have swallowed his whistle at Seattle, but Atlanta is making a loud statement as an emerging NFC power,” said Ira Kaufman of the Pro Football Hall of Fame.
The Denver Broncos slid one spot to No. 6 after losing to the San Diego Chargers. They host their former starting quarterback Brock Osweiler and the first-place Houston Texans on Monday night.
The surprising Buffalo Bills, who have won four games in a row and are in second place in the AFC East, jumped four spots to No. 7.
The Pittsburgh Steelers dropped five spots to No. 8 after their unexpected 30-15 loss to the Miami Dolphins. And now the Steelers host the Patriots without Ben Roethlisberger, who had left knee surgery on Monday and will miss Sunday’s game.
“The Steelers hope to tread water until Ben Roethlisberger returns in time for a late-season surge,” Kaufman said.
The Washington Redskins, who also have won four in a row and trail Dallas by a game in the NFC East, moved up five spots to No. 9.
And the Kansas City Chiefs jumped two spots to No. 10 after topping the Oakland Raiders.
Online: AP NFL website: www.pro32.ap.org and http://twitter.com/AP_NFL