Only MLS league games will be reflected in the rankings. Rankings are voted on by MLSsoccer.com editorial staff; words by Alicia Rodriguez.
BIGGEST MOVERS: SEA +4; TOR, LA -4
LAST WEEK: 2
HIGH: 1 | LOW: 7
Atlanta knock NYCFC off their perch and hit the top spot for the first time this season after rather comfortably dispatching the Galaxy in LA. The Five Stripes are a point behind the Shield lead with a game in hand, so they are looking good at the moment.
LAST WEEK: 1
HIGH: 1 | LOW: 2
NYCFC's unbeaten run to start the season is over, and while no team wants to lose, dropping a game can take the pressure off the attention that comes with a long unbeaten streak. Of possible concern, however, is the uncertainty about Patrick Vieira's future, despite his verbal commitment to the team in the past.
LAST WEEK: 5
HIGH: 3 | LOW: 15
Right now, Sporting appear to be the class of the Western Conference and it's not especially close. The big question is whether they're going to relinquish that hold or if their frailties will be exposed as spring turns to summer.
LAST WEEK: 7
HIGH: 4 | LOW: 18
FC Dallas are now the final unbeaten team in MLS this season, and have been rewarded with a steady climb up the Power Rankings. A win over Philly is nice but may not be the stiffest test right now — the Yankee Stadium clash against NYCFC on Sunday — will be a much bigger yardstick in which FCD can measure themselves by.
LAST WEEK: 8
HIGH: 5 | LOW: 17
LAFC have to be the ESPN+ team of choice these days, as they've yet to play a boring game, with their wild 5-3 win over Montreal being 90 minutes of pure entertainment. The next challenge for them is to open Banc of California Stadium in style, against a Seattle team that is showing more than a few signs of life.
LAST WEEK: 4
HIGH: 3 | LOW: 7
The Red Bulls turned in a somewhat unlucky performance against the Fire at home, not the first time they've been unlucky to the point of losing a game but the first time they've done it at home in the league this season. There's no chance Jesse Marsch will replicate his famous "Welcome to MLS" tackle on Zlatan in LA, is there?
LAST WEEK: 3
HIGH: 1 | LOW: 7
The readers who eagerly wait to see how high TFC are ranked will note they have dropped this week. After CCL ends on Wednesday, the real (league) TFC and the theoretical (CCL) TFC will merge, and we will no longer have to parse the two. In the meantime, there's a pretty big game coming up ... against Chicago.
LAST WEEK: 10
HIGH: 8 | LOW: 19
Orlando City have the longest current win streak at four, and seem to have turned a corner. Of course, up next is a road game against the Rapids, the kind of game where the Lions could find a banana peel easily. If they get the win, though, they'll jump even higher, possibly into the elite group at the moment.
LAST WEEK: 11
HIGH: 7 | LOW: 15
A dominant home win against a mostly USL side was just what the doctor ordered for the Dynamo. Can they build on this, or will inconsistency be the trend for Houston this season? One sign of particular promise was that five different players scored in the win over Toronto.
LAST WEEK: 6
HIGH: 6 | LOW: 12
The Galaxy haven't put together any kind of streak yet this year. Coming off a loss, if form holds they're bound to get a result of some kind against the Red Bulls. But questions about the best lineup and the best defense for this team look like they will persist for some time yet.
LAST WEEK: 9
HIGH: 2 | LOW: 11
Columbus' struggles continued with a home draw, albeit against an improved New England side. After four games unbeaten, Crew SC are now four games winless, but a game against a slumping Earthquakes defense may be just what they need to get back in the win column.
LAST WEEK: 15
HIGH: 5 | LOW: 18
Giovanni Savarese, counterattacking master. In all seriousness, the Timbers had a tall task, and they had the plan to get three points, so full credit to the coach and players. Even better, they'll have a bye next week to take stock and build on a two-game winning run.
LAST WEEK: 13
HIGH: 11 | LOW: 22
Teal Bunbury continues his fantastic season with a goal in the draw in Columbus, and with all the attention paid to Matt Turner, Diego Fagundez, and the continued absence of Lee Nguyen, the resurgence of Bunbury may be the story under the radar that has been essential in the opening weeks of the Brad Friedel era.
LAST WEEK: 18
HIGH: 4 | LOW: 21
The Sounders finally notched their first win of the season but they've still got games in hand on the rest of the West. Is it time to ask if this is really Cristian Roldan's team? The midfielder is getting it done all over the field.
LAST WEEK: 12
HIGH: 8 | LOW: 15
The Whitecaps have lost three in a row, and while there may be discussion about the two red cards handed out against Sporting KC, the truth is Vancouver had already lost the game by the time the ejections came. Here's hoping Kei Kamara gets healthy ASAP.
LAST WEEK: 14
HIGH: 12 | LOW: 16
Florian Jungwirth nearly spearheaded a comeback for the ages with his late brace in the loss in Orlando, but otherwise there was nothing to write home about for the Quakes. San Jose appear to have hit the new manager growing pains with a vengeance.
LAST WEEK: 16
HIGH: 12 | LOW: 21
The most shocking result of the weekend was the Impact losing a 3-1 game 5-3 against LAFC. Yes, they picked up a red card, but seldom do teams collapse that much in 45 minutes, even when they're playing a man down.
LAST WEEK: 21
HIGH: 6 | LOW: 21
Even Mike Petke wasn't sure RSL would have gotten the win over the Rapids without Tim Howard's red card and a late handball. But with events turning their way, in a rivalry game, no less, and an opportunity against the Whitecaps, they may finally find some traction on their campaign.
LAST WEEK: 17
HIGH: 17 | LOW: 23
The Rapids endured a tough evening in the loss to RSL, but more out of a feeling they should have taken a result. Anthony Hudson's team isn't a finished product, and there are still some questions in certain positions, but the plans he's laying appear to be coming together, and that's a good sign in Colorado.
LAST WEEK: 23
HIGH: 11 | LOW: 23
The Fire needed a win and they got one in a tough location against the Red Bulls. Aleksandar Katai and Richard Sanchez, two players who had come in for considerable criticism in the press, really showed up in the win. Maybe that's all it will take for Chicago to get going.
LAST WEEK: 20
HIGH: 15 | LOW: 23
It was more of the same for Minnesota this weekend, as they fell behind, put together a rally, but couldn't manage a result. Questions about the defense, never fully answered in their short MLS history, are being asked once again.
LAST WEEK: 19
HIGH: 12 | LOW: 20
The Union are five games winless and look completely lethargic. Their game against D.C. United will offer a huge opportunity, but it's also an occasion D.C. will be up for, and with the problems already mounting for Philly, this season is starting to look like it's going to be very, very long.
LAST WEEK: 22
HIGH: 18 | LOW: 23
D.C. were the team on a bye, but an extra week of prep and spirits high after finally notching their first win will leave them optimistic they can get another victory on the short road trip to Philadelphia.
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