2011 NFL Week 8 Powre Rankings
THIS IS THE BEST TIME OF YEAR. You separate the contenders from the teams whose glass slippers (REDSKINS, TITANS) are finally coming off.
LET’S GET IT.
1. Green Bay Packers (7-0).
2. New England Patriots (5-1).
I’m not 100% sold that their defense is legitimate enough to stop teams that routinely score 26+ PPG, but we’ll see.
3. San Francisco 49ers (5-1).
4. New Orleans Saints (5-2).
I put more stock in that loss to Tampa Bay, a team that looks like it has no idea what it’s doing one week to the next, than a 62-7 win against a team that has quit across the board without the league’s best QB.
5. Pittsburgh Steelers (5-2).
Is it possible for the Steelers to really sneak up on anyone? Lo and behold, they are flying under the radar and in first place in the AFC North.
6. New York Football Giants (4-2).
Two fluke losses, and the one break they’ve gotten from the refs after 15 years of being on the short end of those calls (Cruz vs. ARZ). They’re getting critical players healthy, and they will be needed.
7. Buffalo Bills (4-2).
The Bills just came off a BYE and are heading into another one in Week 8.
8. Cincinnati Bengals (4-2).
I’m bullish on the Bengals. Exhibit A for why chemistry matters over big names and salaries (looks at Joe Banner).
9. Houston Texans (4-3).
I see them easily going 0-fer November.
10. San Diego Chargers (4-2).
They really just have not looked impressive at any point this season. Easily Rivers’ worst, statistically. No pass rush on defense is putting their secondary in precarious situations every week.
11. Detroit Lions (5-2).
No shame in the losses with respect to the teams they’ve lost to, but they’re coming apart at the seams. Teams mirror their head coach and Schwartz went into the tank in Week 7; clearly reeling from the fallout of the much-ado-about-nothing post-game back slap vs. SF.
12. Chicago Bears (4-3).
13. Baltimore Ravens (4-2).
I’ve seen this team look absolutely PUTRID three different times this season. I’m talking worst-EVER putrid. Each of those they lost, the other (vs. NYJ) they should have lost, except Mark Sanchez was even worse than Joe Flacco on that night.
14. Atlanta Falcons (4-3).
I’ve never seen a whinier team, like a bunch of tattle tales after recess where their pick up squad wins, but they complain that someone dunked on their last-picked pudgy guy “too hard” on a fast break.
15. New York Jets (4-3).
You would have thought Rex Ryan’s dog had died with the way he looked in press conferences when they lost three straight. Now they win two against the arguably worst team in football and another that finds new ways to lose games every other week and he’s bragging again.
Their defense will be formidable, however, as it has shone brilliantly of late.
16. Oakland Raiders (4-3).
Hue Jackson must have been a used car salesman at some point between coaching gigs. I swear he was…
Some people will get where I am going with that.
17. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (4-3).
How does a team get blown out by 45 points, then handily beat the second best team in the NFC and get manhandled by a sleep-inducing-level boring team the following week?
18. Dallas Cowboys (3-3).
I don’t know what’s worse, the fact that their fans act as if they just clinched a Super Bowl berth after beating the woeful Rams, or the fact that a .500 team is “unbeatable”.
19. Kansas City Chiefs (3-3).
This team looked dead in the water a month ago. Now, three straight wins later, and a Monday Night Football game vs. division-leading San Diego coming up in Week 8 and they could literally be in first place. A month is all it takes, people.
20. Tennessee Titans (3-3).
They’re going to finish 6-10.
21. Washington Redskins (3-3).
So are they.
22. Carolina Panthers (2-5).
They are a couple of rookie mistakes from being 4-3 or 5-2. Literally. Considering they are missing the heart and soul of their defense, which gets handed a short field quite frequently; they are going to be a force to be reckoned with in 2012 — and potentially ruin the Bucs’ and/or Falcons’ playoff hopes come December THIS YEAR.
23. Cleveland Browns (3-3).
They won, yes, but 6-3 against a horrid team that had its once-a-season Shouldn’t Have Won game in Week 5, when they should have won this game going away, by at least two touchdowns.
24. Philadelphia Eagles (2-4).
One win (against a team that committed FIVE turnovers, and eking it out by 7 points???) does not undo all the problems that plague this team. Dallas will put one of the three final nails in the coffin of their season in Week 8. The Giants will hammer in the last one on Week 11.
25. Jacksonville Jaguars (2-5).
They only seem to win those ugly, bloodbath games. I felt tortured watching Monday Night Football last night. Guys appeared to have been shaving points across the board (other than Josh Scobee).
26. Denver Broncos (2-5).
I’m sick of hearing/reading the Tebow jokes. It was old before UF won its FIRST national championship with him. Here, five years later and it’s even worse than ever. KNOCK IT OFF. He’ll go 6-21 for 54 yards against the Vikings in Week 8 and the same people who were pulling Reach Arounds on Tebow on Sunday will go back to bashing him like they did before the season began.
27. Seattle Seahawks (2-5).
Pete Carroll needs to stick to college. The whole vibe around this team is reminiscent of the ones that followed Carroll’s Jets and Patriots teams.
28. Minnesota Vikings (1-6).
They probably should have started Ponder out of the gate. Everyone knows Don is done. If you had enough faith to draft the kid 2-3 rounds too soon (which they did, and I’m saying this as a HUGE Ponder/FSU fan), then why let him languish on the bench behind a guy who just can’t get it done; while wasting Young All Day’s prime years?
29. Arizona Cardinals (1-5).
They need a new regime across the board. Whisenhunt is clueless as a play caller, game manager and gets outfoxed in situational decisions. When you are at a decided disadvantage as is, you cannot afford to have that type of leadership.
Switching to a 3-4 alignment without the personnel to run it effectively was brilliant, also, by the way.
30. Miami Dolphins (0-6).
Okay, they didn’t quit, but I’d be harder on them if their coach, front office and owner weren’t running the team like someone who just awoke out of a five day Coke bender.
31. St. Louis Rams (0-6).
Spags knows defense. The Rams have a good defense.
Just too bad it spends nearly 40 minutes a game on the field.
32. Indianapolis Colts (0-7).
Why does Jim Caldwell always look like someone who has Post Concussion Syndrome, or That Guy who falls asleep on the 4 line after boarding in Clinton Hill, only to find himself in Woodlawn and the ensuing “Oh S$&!” that comes with realizing he’s out of his Hipster Element? That’s Caldwell’s face all game. You can never tell if the Colts have won a game or got blown out by 55. Unlike Tony Dungy, you don’t have Peyton Manning to cover your team’s ills. He’s going to get canned either during their BYE or in the offseason.
SIDE NOTE: I’m going to laugh myself into a smoker’s cough if the Colts actually win a game and don’t get the #1 pick, only to have Luck either return to Stanford or pull an Elway/Eli and say he’ll only play for the Vikings or Redskins (which is close to where his father is from).