NFL Powre Rankings: Preseason Week 1
Now that we have concluded one week of preseason play in the NFL, it’s time to assess matters. Although most teams had less than 10 days of practice together (many not even hitting in pads), some teams still looked much better prepared than others over the weekend. Here are the rankings…
1. Green Bay Packers.
I don’t move the Super Bowl champs from the previous season down until they lose a regular season game.
2. New England Patriots.
Really ran up the score on the Jaguars, but more importantly, everyone who played for them offensively looked sharp and well-coached.
3. New York Jets.
The Jets will be fine. Their offense has not had a full practice together yet, as they are waiting for WR Plaxico Burress to heal.
4. New York Football Giants.
The Giants don’t look any different offensively from last year — from a playcalling standpoint, and that is disturbing, but talent-wise, they have a lot more healthy and capable bodies at WR and RB than last year. Defensively, they could have had 10 sacks easily if this were a regular season game. Barring injury, they will have the best defense in the NFL.
5. Detroit Lions.
Can you smell what the Lions are cooking?
6. Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
I’m a fan of teams that don’t acquire a boatload of free agents to bolster their roster. Build from within, have people who thoroughly know your system and can execute it, and achieve commensurate results.
7. Philadelphia Eagles.
They have to be an asterisk for now, because no one knows what’s going on with WR Jeremy Maclin. WR Steve Smith talks like he will play in the regular season opener, but he’s more likely to sit out almost half of the regular season. Their defense still has a lot to prove.
8. Atlanta Falcons.
The first month of the regular season will give us a better understanding of this team. They’re stacked, though. And they have a lot more speed opposite WR Roddy White now.
9. Kansas City Chiefs.
I don’t place much stock in their preseason opener.
10. Indianapolis Colts.
They will be fine when Manning returns.
11. New Orleans Saints.
Impressive, not because of the score, but because they seem to have a lot more cohesion than I expected at this point.
12. Pittsburgh Steelers.
Their offensive line looks bad. And I still don’t have much confidence in their secondary.
13. Carolina Panthers.
The Panthers were missing tons of starters on Saturday, but their backups actually held the fort against Giants’ 3rd teamers most of the night. Cam Newton looked better than Jimmy Clausen.
14. Dallas Cowboys.
Floating below the radar…
15. San Diego Chargers.
Like the Giants, all the Bolts need to do is cut down their turnovers and improve on special teams (along with staying healthy). Their offense will be lethal, and their defense — returning almost all of its starters — was already ranked #1 overall last season. They do have questions with RB Ryan Mathews, whoever.
16. Baltimore Ravens.
They have more holes to fill than originally thought, and not much cap room to work with, either. NT Haloti Ngata should restructure his deal.
17. Houston Texans.
18. Seattle Seahawks.
Coach Pete Carroll gets his guys to buy in, I’ll say that much. If LT Russell Okung can’t stay healthy, they’re going to be in trouble.
19. Miami Dolphins.
20. St. Louis Rams.
Spags has the guys ready to go. Do they have enough weapons on both sides of the ball to win consistently?
21. Chicago Bears.
The Bears are still looking shabby.
22. Washington Redskins.
Hey, a win is a win, right… even if the feeling is going to be fleeting for them most of the year.
23. Jacksonville Jaguars.
Same ol’ sorry @$% Jags… get blown out by 5 touchdowns, then watch them beat the Falcons (preseason nevertheless applicable in the case of the Jags) by 3 touchdowns this weekend.
24. Oakland Raiders.
The Raiders look awful. It’s preseason, but where are they going to get offense?
25. San Francisco 49ers.
So Harbaugh is hitching his wagon to QB Alex Smith, huh? I think they’re going to tank so that they can get Andrew Luck.
26. Tennessee Titans.
You know it’s bad when the team drafts a guy too high (Jake Locker), says he looks bad, until they acquire an over-the-hill/done QB in Matt(hew) Hasselbeck, who comes in and looks worse… and then the team says Locker looks good all of a sudden. I don’t even think they have a plan down there in Nashville.
27. Cleveland Browns.
McCoy was actually pretty good!
28. Buffalo Bills.
Cutting LB Aaron Maybin, who they drafted far too high (haven’t people learned about Penn State players since the mid-1990s yet ha?
29. Minnesota Vikings.
I am quickly losing hope for them with their QB/WR situation. I hate watching the best RB in the NFL languish on bad teams (Eric Dickerson and Barry Sanders before Adrian Peterson with these Vikings).
30. Denver Broncos.
31. Arizona Cardinals.
Kolb still sucks. And they’re not going to re-sign Larry Fitzgerald. WATCH.
32. Cincinnati Bengals.
JUST SELL THE TEAM MIKE, DEAR GOD.