The old saying is that defense wins championships. But one has to dig back to 2015 before finding an offense that fell outside the top 10 in EPA and won a Super Bowl. The truth is that having a top-10 unit on both sides of the ball is the key.
The Detroit Lions were the only NFL team to miss the playoffs with a top-10 offense in 2022. Meanwhile, five of the top-10 defenses missed the dance. Only one top-10 offense missed the playoffs in 2021 compared to three top-10 defenses.
More often than not, having top-10 units on both sides of the ball is key. In the case of the best offense in the league, they also boast a defensive coordinator who may be the sickest single-game planner in the NFL.
From the current NFL standings to team depth charts to coverage of every game in the 18-week NFL schedule, we have all the news from around the league to keep you up to speed.
Who Has the Best Offense in the NFL?
The Miami Dolphins have the best offense in the NFL. The speed at which they operate is unmatched. Mike McDaniel and Chris Grier have set out to assemble the fastest team in NFL history, and they succeeded.
Being fast alone is not enough to be good — ask the Las Vegas Raiders’ draft strategy at WR for years. But schematic excellence, speed, and technical prowess have all met in Miami with devastating results for opposing defenses.
It’s nearly impossible to slow the offense down because Tua Tagovailoa’s mental game has entered a new level. His anticipation is outrageous, and his accuracy in the short and intermediate areas of the field has been sublime.
Ranking the Remaining NFL Offenses
2) San Francisco 49ers
The San Francisco 49ers entered the year as another offensive unit that could be much higher on this list by the end of the season — by Week 5, they’ve done just that. Despite losing their first two quarterbacks on the depth chart a season ago, they found lightning in a bottle with Brock Purdy.
MORE: Top NFL Defenses in 2023
A midseason deal for Christian McCaffrey helped the rushing attack improve drastically. They ranked 25th in rushing EPA from Weeks 1-6 and were third from Weeks 7-18 with CMC. This offense is firing on all cylinders in 2023.
The passing attack topped Miami heading into Week 5 and remained there despite a poor showing against the Browns. The 49ers have the highest dropback EPA and second-highest success rate in the league. Miami’s rushing attack has allowed them to keep the top spot.
3) Buffalo Bills
The Buffalo Bills ranked second in the NFL in EPA and success rate last season. Josh Allen is almost impossible to defend, and Stefon Diggs is one of the best wide receivers in the NFL.
While the Bills need Allen’s legs to maximize their potential, the young QB must realize if he wants to add “long” in front of “illustrious” at the end of his career, he must take fewer unnecessary hits. He has done a better job of that as the 2023 season has rolled on.
Buffalo is currently third in EPA and second in overall success rate.
4) Kansas City Chiefs
The Kansas City Chiefs are still an unbelievable offensive product, but their results have been underwhelming early in the season. It will likely take time to figure out what the ideal rotation is for their makeshift wide receiver corps.
But until then, Patrick Mahomes will continue to do Mahomes things, and Travis Kelce will continue to play with … style.
The Chiefs offense feels subdued, but that’s only because it’s not quite living up to our heightened standards. And even their slight downturn hasn’t mattered because the Chiefs defense is playing at a higher level than any prior season with Mahomes under center.
5) Philadelphia Eagles
The Philadelphia Eagles have built one of the most bulletproof rosters in recent memory. And while Howie Roseman has bought many of the defensive pieces looking to push for another Super Bowl appearance, the offense has been almost entirely homegrown.
They have the best offensive line in the NFL. A.J. Brown, DeVonta Smith, Dallas Goedert, and D’Andre Swift are a formidable group of skill-position talent. Meanwhile, Jalen Hurts has done absolutely nothing but get better every year since he first stepped foot in Tuscaloosa.
Although the passing attack has started a tad slow, they’re still able to run it through a defense’s face on the ground, which will keep the offense humming even with an underwhelming passing game.
6) Detroit Lions
The Detroit Lions’ offensive line is outstanding. They possess continuity from left to right and even boast some depth on the interior.
David Montgomery and Jahmyr Gibbs are a nice combination of consistency and explosiveness, and Detroit has enough weapons on the outside to move the ball consistently.
Jared Goff is still playing some of his very best ball in 2023. Sam LaPorta has exploded onto the scene over the middle in Ben Johnson’s offense, and Amon-Ra St. Brown continues to be one of the league’s premier pass catchers.
7) Los Angeles Chargers
The days of seeing Justin Herbert continuously throwing passes inside of five air yards are over. Kellen Moore has brought a more explosive element to the offense; Herbert has been more aggressive over the middle of the field and downfield to truly maximize the offense.
8) Baltimore Ravens
Stacking the top offenses is incredibly difficult. A Todd Monken-led Baltimore Ravens passing attack with Mark Andrews and Isaiah Likely at tight end already sounds good. Monken knows how to feature the TE position.
MORE: NFL Prime-Time Games 2023
But Baltimore also added Odell Beckham Jr. and Zay Flowers to the outside, moves that prove the Ravens are finally ready to shift their focus from a run-heavy unit to an evolved pass-first attack.
Week 5 was ugly, as the Ravens receivers decided to coat their gloves in motor oil before the game to make catching the ball a challenge. They were successful in their endeavors.
9) Seattle Seahawks
Seattle remains one of the most successful offenses on the list, but they’ve also not played up to the standard we set for them after a strong campaign in 2022. Jaxon Smith-Njigba is coming along slowly, and the offensive line has struggled with injuries.
Despite inconsistent play at times, they rank ninth in EPA and fourth in success rate. However, there are only 10 teams currently boasting positive EPA results on a per-play basis compared to the 19 teams that accomplished the same thing over the entirety of 2022.
Overall, offense is down league-wide.
10) Los Angeles Rams
The Los Angeles Rams have been one of the most surprising teams in the NFL early on. Puka Nacua has turned an outstanding training camp and preseason into one of the best first months ever.
Matthew Stafford is back to being his normal self, meaning he is making physics-bending plays and mind-numbing decisions alike.
Getting Cooper Kupp back should take this offense to the next level. They’re already running the ball better than expected. If the passing attack can develop with two ball-hogs on the outside, this offense could be difficult to stop in the long run.
11) Dallas Cowboys
The Dallas Cowboys offense has been interesting to track early on. They lack any sort of explosive element almost entirely. They can’t seem to find space on deep crossing routes, and they have practically eliminated the middle of the field.
They’ve also figured out a way to make a receiver with 1,000-yard seasons with four different franchises practically invisible. So, despite having a talented roster, they have not been maximizing their offense schematically.
12) Houston Texans
C.J. Stroud has played out of his skull in the first month of his NFL career. It’s been an unbelievable journey, considering how he looked during his first preseason outing. That lost puppy dog has turned into an all-out attack dog in a matter of mere weeks.
It is truly incredible to see the speed at which he is operating mentally. And he’s doing all of that behind a completely makeshift OL.
13) Jacksonville Jaguars
The Jacksonville Jaguars finished eighth a season ago in EPA, and they added a year of experience for their young quarterback along with a guy named Calvin Ridley. If you haven’t heard of him, he’s pretty decent at the whole playing football thing.
The Jaguars offense is still coming back from early self-inflicted wounds. However, Trevor Lawrence is playing some incredible football, and Ridley has been even better than expected for Jacksonville so far in 2023.
14) Minnesota Vikings
The addition of Jordan Addison complicated things for opposing defenses. Addison’s speed and ball-tracking ability will come in handy. The way he complements all-world talent Justin Jefferson and T.J. Hockenson is perfect.
Continuity on the offensive line is another positive for the Vikings. Christian Darrisaw has ascended into one of the better left tackles in football, and the rest of the unit took positive steps in 2022.
It will be fascinating to see how this offense operates without Jefferson for the foreseeable future. But early returns haven’t been positive.
15) Cleveland Browns
Losing Nick Chubb is never going to be a net positive, but it’s interesting to see Deshaun Watson have his best game as a Brown immediately after Chubb’s injury.
But Watson has been on the sidelines since that performance with an injury to his throwing shoulder. That hamstrung the offense in Week 4, and even coming off of the Bye Week, it appears P.J. Walker will be taking the first-team snaps for Cleveland in Week 5.
16) Denver Broncos
The Denver Broncos offense might not be entirely fixed yet, but you wouldn’t know it from the first four weeks of the NFL season. They’re currently 15th in success rate and 12th in EPA. However, a contest against the New York Jets will be the first major defensive test.
17) Tampa Bay Buccaneers
The Tampa Bay offensive line and Baker Mayfield have been better than many anticipated in 2023. Tristan Wirfs might be the best left tackle in the league, which is incredible, considering he’s barely played on the left side since high school.
Mike Evans and Chris Godwin are a treat for Mayfield on the outside as well.
But they’re still an average offense, even when outperforming expectations.
18) Arizona Cardinals
The Arizona Cardinals’ offensive staff is doing an outstanding job of maximizing their potential on the ground and in the air. They are using Josh Dobbs’ legs intelligently, and he is playing the best football of his professional career.
This is all happening despite an underwhelming OL and less-than-stellar offensive weaponry.
19) Indianapolis Colts
Shane Steichen is a wizard. No matter if it’s Anthony Richardson or Gardner Minshew, the Colts are moving the ball. It’s certainly not perfect. Minshew can’t bring out the explosiveness in the Indianapolis Colts offense the way that Richardson can.
But the offensive line is playing much better than a season ago, which was expected.
20) Green Bay Packers
After a strong start from Jordan Love and the Green Bay Packers offense, things could be unraveling quickly for this unit. Love threw three interceptions to a team in the Raiders that only produced seven interceptions in their previous 21 games.
Their left tackle is out for the season, and Aaron Jones has been banged up to start the campaign.
21) Cincinnati Bengals
It’s been really ugly for the Cincinnati Bengals so far in 2023. A bad weather game in Week 1 makes their offense look worse than it is. However, even when we take that game away, things have not gone well for Joe Burrow and Zac Taylor. They will likely figure it out, but early returns have been underwhelming.
Things got better for Cincinnati in Week 5. But Burrow needs to get back to 100 percent health if this offense wants to maximize its potential before January rolls around. Week 6 against the Seahawks brought the offense back down to Earth.
22) Las Vegas Raiders
The Las Vegas Raiders offensive line has both overperformed and underperformed. They’ve been outstanding in pass protection but have struggled mightily to get the run game going.
MORE: NFL Bye Weeks Schedule 2023
Jimmy Garoppolo has been efficient in the offense, just like he was in San Francisco, but he’s also turning the ball over at an alarming rate. Depending on how long Garoppolo is out with his current back injury, the Raiders offense could get ugly.
23) New Orleans Saints
It at least appears as though the New Orleans Saints have figured out that their space weapon in the backfield should probably be used in space.
Chris Olave is primed for a monster second season, and if Trevor Penning can improve his consistency in pass protection, New Orleans OL should be back closer to what we’ve gotten used to seeing from them. Derek Carr’s injury complicates things, but 2023 hasn’t been too kind to New Orleans.
24) Atlanta Falcons
The Falcons have the talent. Kyle Pitts and Drake London are two large targets to hit crossing over the middle of the field, and Bijan Robinson stepped onto an NFL field for the first time as a top-five back in the league. He’s LaDainian Tomlinson reincarnated.
Ridder just hasn’t hit them yet. Subsequently, the offense is stalling out. It does not help that the QB lauded for his processing ability has six interceptions over his past three outings, either.
25) Washington Commanders
The Commanders currently rank higher in offensive efficiency than their ranking on this list. However, Sam Howell is on pace to absolutely shatter the sack record, and no, he is not an edge rusher or interior defender. The QB is currently on pace for over 90 sacks. But that can only happen if he remains healthy for 17 games.
Nonetheless, when he’s not taking sacks and occasionally losing his mind and the football to interceptions, he’s shown that he can absolutely spin it. Washington’s coaching staff may not have the luxury of seeing Howell’s development past 2022, but the organization at large might.
26) Carolina Panthers
Bryce Young has been bad as a rookie. While the same sort of flashes we saw at Alabama are still in there, he’s been completely overwhelmed by the speed of the NFL game. He’s also continued taking far too many unnecessary hits, something he needed to work on at the NFL level.
It certainly doesn’t help that his offense lacks speed. His best wide receiver is Adam Thielen, and it’s not particularly close.
27) Pittsburgh Steelers
The Pittsburgh Steelers offensive line is about as underwhelming as the New York Giants. Left tackle, center, and right tackle are all issues. Matt Canada’s offense is a problem, and Kenny Pickett simply has not shown the mental sharpness of an NFL QB.
He’s quick to panic and try to escape pressure, and he’s not trusting the picture given to him by the defense.
28) New York Jets
Their offensive line has been incredibly underwhelming and is now missing multiple key pieces. The loss of Aaron Rodgers thrust the worst starting QB in the NFL back into action in what was supposed to be a redshirt season, if not more.
But the Jets are competing. And while most of that comes on the other side of the ball, Zach Wilson has shown strides, and the offense, in general, has been better than expected, given the circumstances.
29) New York Giants
Things have not gone well for the Giants, and everything points to the offensive line. They can’t protect Daniel Jones, and while he’s doing everything in his power to play smart and fast, there is only so much he can do. There’s no explosion to the offense because he doesn’t have any time.
30) Chicago Bears
To say it was a surprise seeing the Chicago Bears offense devolve into a pumpkin would be an understatement. The QB run game that was dominant a season ago has been largely ignored.
But even when used, it has been unimaginative. Meanwhile, the offensive line is still a dumpster fire, and the passing attack is completely lost.
31) Tennessee Titans
Speaking of underwhelming offensive lines…
The left side of the Tennessee Titans’ OL improved from last season. However, an offensive line must work as a cohesive unit, and the right side is unnervingly bad on paper.
The run-heavy, play-action attack lessens their overall burden on the line. However, if Tennessee struggles to open holes for Derrick Henry, Ryan Tannehill will be forced into a more traditional dropback game, which is not the Titans’ strength.
Who Has the Worst Offense in the NFL?
The New England Patriots have the worst offense in the NFL. After early signs that the Patriots offense might be alright, those signs were burnt to the ground and trampled on. The Jets, Cowboys, and Saints defenses are all good, but an NFL cannot score three points in a two-week span.