Sunday, October 30, 2011

NFL Power Rankings Week 9

Heading into Week 9 we saw a huge upset (Rams over Saints) and a couple of close ones (Giants and Dolphins, Cards and Ravens).

1. Green Bay Packers: 324 (329)
Previous Week: 1
Notes: They actually benefited from the bye week as very few of the top 10 teams stepped up and had impressive performances. They remain, easily, the #1 team in the league.

2. Detroit Lions: 293 (224)
Previous Week: 5
Notes: Back at #2, the Lions demonstrated that those two losses weren't a sign of things to come. Yes it was against the Broncos, but that was an impressive win.

3. San Francisco 49ers: 264(231)
Previous Week: 2
Notes: They move down to #3 even after a win due to the impressive win by the Lions. At 6-1, they pretty much clinched the NFC West. The next goal is to get a #1 or #2 seed in the playoffs.

4. Baltimore Ravens: 245 (222)
Previous Week: 6
Notes: After what looked another upset loss for the Ravens, they bounced back and had their biggest comeback in franchise history. Even though they etched out a win, it still shows some concerns with this team.

5. Pittsburgh Steelers: 240 (219)
Previous Week: 7
Notes: I have been saying all year that this team does not look good at all, but they were impressive against the Patriots. I'm going to say that it's mostly due to the talent on the Steelers more so than the Pats being overrated.

6. Houston Texans: 226 (195)
Previous Week: 8
Notes: Another division win for the Texans. With all the troubles in the AFC West, they no longer look like the weakest of the division leaders.

7. New England Patriots: 213 (225)
Previous Week: 4
Notes: Tough loss for the Patriots. They should win against the Giants at home next week, but you never know what kind of Giants team you'll see on the football field.

8. Cincinnati Bengals: 211 (170)
Previous Week: 10
Notes: They have been quietly emerging as one of the elite AFC teams. An away game next week against the Titans should be a good one. If they win, don't rule them out for winning the AFC North.

9. Buffalo Bills: 199 (151)
Previous Week: 11
Notes: A good win against a struggling Redskins team. While the 49ers are putting up a more surprising and impressive season, the Bills are right behind them.

10. New Orleans Saints: 196 (227)
Previous Week: 3
Notes: Ouch. Who would have thought it would be the Saints who give up the Rams first win? It wasn't even close at that. Even with that loss, they are still the clear division favorites.

11. New York Giants: 150 (135 )
Previous Week: 12
Notes: It wasn't pretty, but the Giants found a way to win. Even with being 2 games up in the NFC East, it's hard to call them the division favorites as they have the toughest remaining schedule in the NFL (remaining 9 games teams have a combined record of 29 - 15..and that includes a 3-4 Eagles who have been great as of late)

12. San Diego Chargers: 140 (171)
Previous Week: 11
Notes: Yes they should have won that game, but the fact of the matter is they played like crap for most (if not all) of the 60 minutes. Now tied with the Chiefs and Raiders for 1st in the AFC West, they are far from looking like a lock to clinch the division this year.

13. Philadelphia Eagles: 130 (68)
Previous Week: 19
Notes: Sunday night was the first time that the Eagles actually looked like the time they are supposed to be. An impressive win over the Cowboys. A win over the Bears next week will show that this team is back on track.

14. New York Jets: 110 (118)
Previous Week: 14
Notes: The Pats losing opens up the door for the Jets (even with a win by the Bills). Huge games against the Bills and then the Pats. If the Jets take both games, they will have a strong chance to take the division.

15. Chicago Bears: 109 (108)
Previous Week: 15
Notes: A win over the Eagles next week will make the Bears strong wild card contenders.

16. Atlanta Falcons: 101 (94)
Previous Week: 16
Notes: I've been disappointed with the Falcons this year, but think they are a better 4-3 team than the Buccs. They face an easy game against the Colts before going back home for an important game against the Saints.

17. Dallas Cowboys: 87 (123)
Previous Week: 13
Notes: The fact that the Cowboys couldn't' even play competitively against the Eagles shows how much trouble this team is. Romo has proven himself a good quarterback at times, but his lack of ability to perform in clutch situations is troublesome for the Cowboys. I won't be surprised if they get rid of him next season.

18. Oakland Raiders: 80 (78)
Previous Week: 18
Notes: The Chiefs pulling out a win against the Chargers benefited the Raiders as they now sit in a 3 way tie for first. If McFadden gets healthy and Palmer starts to play well this team has as good of a chance to take the division as the Chargers.

19. Tennessee Titans: 70 (46)
Previous Week: 21
Notes: An easy game for the Titans, but could have also been a trap game for them (it's easy to take the Colts lightly). Chris Johnson really needs to step up his game.

20. Washington Redskins: 49 (93)
Previous Week: 17
Notes: After looking long they can compete for the NFC East division, they have been getting worse and worse each week. As much as Grossman is not a good QB, he's better than Beck and has helped the team start off the season at 3-1. They need to put him back in the starting position.

21. Tampa Bay Buccaneers: 41 (45)
Previous Week: 22
Notes: Nothing likely made the Buccs happier than seeing the Saints get upset like that against the Rams. Now if they can take 2 out of 2 against the Saints next week, they have a legit shot of winning the NFC South. I still think this team has a lot of issues and is one of the weaker +.500 teams.

22. Kansas City Chiefs: 38 (16)
Previous Week: 24
Notes: I said last week that if they beat the chargers they'd be out of the bottom 20, but still not sold on this team. They should have lost that game and while they have made significant improvements since their horrendous 0-3 start, they still have a long way to go.

23. Cleveland Browns: 23 (60)
Previous Week: 20
Notes: Browns are a "what you see is what you get" type of team. They beat the teams you'd expect and lose to the ones you'd expect. Expect a loss next week against the Texans followed by a win next week against the Rams.

24. Carolina Panthers: 1 (23)
Previous Week: 23
Notes: Very close game against the Vikings, but come out on the losing end. They are one of the more exciting sub-.500 teams to watch and definitely have been giving 100% each week.

25. Minnesota Vikings: -38 (-53)
Previous Week: 28
Notes: The post McNabb era looks promising for the Vikings after beating the Panthers and coming close to beating the Packers. They'll be looking for redemption next week against the Packers, but even if they don't get it expect a great game the following week against the Raiders.

26. Seattle Seahawks: -59 (-19)
Previous Week: 26
Notes: Given the way the Cowboys have been playing, expect the possibility of a Seahawks upset next week.

27. Jacksonville Jaguars: -71 (-17)
Previous Week: 25
Notes: A great defensive win over the Ravens followed by a poor performance against the Texans. They follow the bye week with a, what they hope to be, a morale booster against the Colts.

28. Denver Broncos: -79 (-32 )
Previous Week: 27
Notes: I can never grasp how people can give up on a rookie QB after only a couple of games. Tebow looked bad against a great Lions team, but he'll get better as the year progresses.

29. Arizona Cardinals: -97 (-66 )
Previous Week: 29
Notes: So close to upsetting the Ravens, but couldn't hold on. This team has played close in all of their loses except against the Vikings and Steelers, but still stand at 1-6.

30. Miami Dolphins: -155 (-130 )
Previous Week: 30
Notes: Another close game, but the Dolphins still have yet to win. This team will win sooner than later (and will likely win more than 1 game this season).

31. St. Louis Rams: -174 (-219)
Previous Week: 31
Notes: Who would have thought this team's first win would be against the Saints?? What a morale booster. That being said, I couldn't put them past the Dolphins yet. While an impressive win, the Dolphins are still a better team.

32. Indianapolis Colts: -281 (-226)
Previous Week: 32
Notes: With the Rams winning, the Colts will have a long way to go before getting out of the cellar. This team can easily go 0-16 this year.

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