1. New England Patriots-
The Pats made arguably one of the biggest off-season moves by acquiring Derrick Burgess from the Raiders. Brady is getting back into the flow of the game, and he seems to be coming along nicely. Add the hard running of Fred Taylor, and the continuing dominance of Randy Moss and Wes Welker, this offense looks to be back to 2007 form. The defense has improved drastically from last year. The secondary got much younger, and all indication is Darius Butler is an absolute stud. Patrick Chung is a hard hitter, and FA pick up Brandon McGowan is looking really good.
2. Pittsburgh Steelers-
The Steelers are basically the same team from last year. All they really added was Ziggy Hood from Mizzou in the draft, and they lost their 3rd wide receiver in Nate Washington and their nickleback in Bryant McFadden. Big Ben has an achilles injury, and if that offensive line doesn't start blocking for him, he is going to be in the infirmary. The defense is still sick, but perfect offense will always beat perfect defense. That is why New England gets the edge right now.
3. Minnesota Vikings-
Yes, the Vikings are the best team in the NFC. And it isn't just because they have Brett Favre now. They have the best running back in the game, a top 15 wide receiver in Bernard Berrian, and they added the gifted athlete Percy Harvin out of Florida in the draft. As of now, both William's twins are not suspended for using a banned diuretic, so they have the best defensive line in the NFL. They lose Darren Sharper, but Madieu Williams is an up and coming safety, and Antoine Winfield and Cedric Griffin are two very talented corners. Throw in E.J. Henderson who is back from injury, and this is the team to beat in the NFC.
4. Indianapolis Colts-
The Colts are still a dominate team. As long as Peyton is behind center, they are good for at least 11 wins. Losing Marvin won't hurt too much, but losing Dungy will. He is one of the best coaches ever, and Jim Caldwell can't just come in and pick up where Dungy left off in terms of chemistry and being a mentor. Manning does still have Wayne, Clark, and Gonzo as weapons, and the rookie Donald Brown was a steal at the end of the first round. The defense struggles against the run, but they beefed up the defensive line, and still have all-world safety Bob Sanders.
5. Philadelphia Eagles-
Philly was originally the third best team in my mind going into training camp. However, with the death of Jim Johnson, and the loss of Stewart Bradley and rookie Cornelius Ingram for the year, the Eagles have taken a fall. Plus, they looked dreadful in their first preseason game against the Pats. The signing of Mike Vick bolsters them very slightly, as he can't even think about playing until Week 6. I do really like their draft though, with Shady McCoy and Jeremy Maclin, who are two studs and absolute steals from the draft. The defense took a ton of hits, though, first with B-Dawk going to Denver, then the death of Jim Johnson (RIP), and then the loss of Stewart Bradley, their middle linebacker.
6. San Diego Chargers-
It is a risk putting this team this high, but they have so much talent it is hard to ignore them. Phillip Rivers has a plethora of weapons, including (an aging) LT, Darren Sproles, Chris Chambers, Vincent Jackson, and Antonio Gates. The defense isn't too bad either. However, San Diego always seems to play below their potential. In the worst division in football, San Diego should breeze through to a division title. Don't look for them to win too much else though, as history has them pegged as perenial underachievers.
7. Tennessee Titans-
This is a team that gets the job done, even without having as much talent as the elite teams in the NFL. Kerry Collins is a jourenyman quarterback who is only asked to manage the game. The running tandem of LenDale White and Chris Johnson is dynamite, but the offensive line should get alot of that credit. The defense is tenacious and nasty, but losing the big man in the middle may hurt them more than fans want to believe. Jeff Fisher is a top 5 coach in the NFL, and knows how to get the most out of his players.
8. Baltimore Ravens-
This is the second year for sophomore coach John Harbaugh and sophomore quarterback Joe Flacco. Both will try to avoid the sophomore slump, and I think they will. The Ravens have one of the deepest backfields in the game, with McGahee, Rice, and McClain, and not losing Derrick Mason will be HUGE for them. LJ Smith comes over from Philly, which may signal the end of Todd Heap's career as a Raven. The defense is still nasty, and as long as Ray Lewis is in the middle of it, they will be a tough bunch to score on.
9. Dallas Cowboys-
Again, may be a shocker to some of you. But the Cowboys have all the talent in the world. And, since it is the early part of the season, you can bet that Tony Romo is going to be on top of his game. Losing T.O.'s production is tough, but Roy Williams is ready to step up. Miles Austin is a very underrated player, and Patrick Crayton is a solid option in the passing game. Jason Witten is the best tight end in football, and the offensive line will be fully healthy. Plus, the three-headed monster at running back will wear down opposing defenses. The defense got a little better as well, adding Pro-Bowler Keith Brooking, defensive end Igor Olshansky, and losing Anthony Henry and Roy Williams. The secondary is thin, but the front 7 is dominate. DeMarcus Ware is officialy unblocable.
10. Atlanta Falcons-
Matt Ryan is the real deal. And to repay him, the Falcons went out and got him the greatest tight end to ever play in the NFL, Tony Gonzelez. Add that to Roddy White, and Michael "the Burner" Turner, and that is a formidable offense. The defensive is solid, not spectacular, but look for the Falcons to build on their Wild-Card berth and win the NFC South.
Since: Jul 2, 2009
Posted on: August 28, 2009 10:12 am
NFL Power Rankings- Preseason Week 2
Since: Oct 24, 2006
Posted on: August 26, 2009 11:09 am
NFL Power Rankings- Preseason Week 2
Since: Jun 30, 2009
Posted on: August 23, 2009 11:59 pm
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