On this, the 11-year anniversary of the 9-11 attacks, it’s important to remember that there are more important things in life than professional football. This has nothing to do with this post. I just think that, today especially, it’s extremely important that we never forget those who died, and those that sacrifice everything in defense of our freedom.
I doubt Aaron Rodgers (right) is really this happy with losing the #1 spot to Alex Smith and the 49ers.
Now, on to this week’s Power Rankings. We had some definite movers and shakers (see the Jets), and a new #1, which shouldn’t come as any big surprise. On to the rankings, and feel free to comment as always:
1. San Francisco 49ers
Last week: #2. Defeated Green Bay, 30-22
When you’re the #2 team and you beat the #1 team, it’s only right that you then take the top spot.
2. Baltimore Ravens
Last week: #4. Defeated Cincinnati, 44-13.
The Ravens looked flat out dominant against a Cincy team that made the play-offs last year. If Flacco plays like that all season, he could be a dark horse MVP candidate.
3. Denver Broncos
Last week: #10. Defeated Pittsburgh, 31-19.
What was it I said in the first rankings? It might take a while for Peyton? Well, I was wrong. Peyton + a defense = scary good.
4. New England Patriots
Last week: #4. Defeated Tennessee, 34-13.
A dominant performance against a sub-par team. The Pats aren’t hurt by it, but it wasn’t enough to move them up any either.
5. Green Bay Packers
Last week: #1. Lost to San Francisco, 30-22.
Green Bay is still a talented team, and I think they would still be able to beat any team in the league in the playoffs. That’s why the only fall to #5.
6. Atlanta Falcons
Last week: #8. Defeated Kansas City, 40-24.
The Falcons looked unstoppable on offense this week. Matty Ice threw for 299 yards and three scores, and the defense intercepted two Matt Cassell throws.
7. Dallas Cowboys
Last week: #11. Defeated the New York Giants, 24-17.
After an early interception, Romo turned it on and looked great. The defense played well, but the Cowboys have always started fast only to crash at end.
8. Houston Texans
Last week: #7. Defeated Miami, 30-10.
The Texans didn’t do anything wrong to be knocked a spot down. It’s just that other teams did bigger things.
9. New York Giants
Last week: #5. Lost to Dallas, 24-17.
If Victor Cruz doesn’t have a severe case of the dropsies with three “epic fails,” this game could’ve been a lot different. But he did, the G-Men lost, and they slide to #9.
10. Detroit Lions
Last week: #6. Defeated St. Louis 27-23.
Yes, the Lions won, but just barely. St. Louis picked off Matt Stafford three times and overall the Lions looked very average.
11. Chicago Bears
Last week: #13. Defeated Indianapolis 41-21.
It was a dominating performance by “Da Bears,” but it was also against the Colts. Enough for Chicago to move up a few spots, but not much.
12. Pittsburgh Steelers
Last week: #9. Lost to Denver, 31-19.
Pittsburgh kept this close until the very end, but a loss is still a loss. Big Ben’s pick-6 at the end of the game was terrible.
13. San Diego Chargers
Last week: #14. Defeated Oakland 22-14.
An ugly win is enough to move the Chargers up a spot, but if Oakland’s back-up long snapper doesn’t mess up as bad as he did, they easily could have lost this.
14. Philadelphia Eagles
Last week: #12. Defeated Cleveland 17-16.
If the Iggles want to have any shot this year, Mike Vick absolutely cannot have another game like last week.
15. New York Jets
Last week: #23. Defeated Buffalo, 48-28.
Are the Jets really this good, or is Buffalo really that bad? Either way it was an impressive performance by Sanchez, who threw 3 touchdowns.
16. Washington Redskins
Last week: #24. Defeated New Orleans, 40-32.
All you can really say about RGIII’s debut is WOW.
17. New Orleans Saints
Last week: #15. Lost to Washington, 40-32.
18. Oakland Raiders
Last week: #19. Lost to San Diego, 22-14.
Oakland really needs to shore it’s mistakes up if it ever hopes to compete. McFadden also needs to improve a 2.1 yards per carry average.
19. Seattle Seahawks
Last week: #17. Lost to Arizona, 20-16.
Seattle lost a squeaker to a so-so Arizona team that can’t decide who their guy throwing the passes is.
20. Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Last week: #30. Defeated Carolina 16-10.
The Bus move up this far only because every one left is worse than they are. Rookie running back Doug Martin looked good going for 95 yards on 24 carries.
21. Carolina Panthers
Last week: #21. Lost to Tampa Bay, 16-10.
Cam Newton was effective passing the ball, but the Panthers need more from their run game if they want to sniff the playoffs. Getting Jonathan Stewart should help that.
22. Minnesota Vikings
Last week: #25. Defeated Jacksonville, 26-23.
Well, at least the Vikings won. But the Jags aren’t exactly top tier material either.
23. Cincinnati Bengals
Last week: #16. Lost to Baltimore, 44-13.
This could just be a a result of Baltimore’s top tier defense, but the Bengals didn’t look very sharp, and I wasn’t as high on them as everyone else to begin with.
24. Kansas City Chiefs
Last week: #20. Lost to Atlanta, 40-24.
It was a beat down to be sure. But Jamal Charles’ performance (16 carries, 87 yards) could be a stepping stone for the offense if Cassell can reduce the INTs.
25. Arizona Cardinals
Last week: #29. Defeated Seattle, 20-16.
Sorry Cardinals fans. You don’t get a lot of love for beating a mediocre team with a rookie starting quarterback. You do get to move up 4 spots though.
26. Buffalo Bills
Last week: #18. Lost to the New Jets, 48-28.
The Bills got completely Sanchez-ed. Again, not too sure if this is more on the Bills or the Jets, but it was ugly either way for Buffalo.
27. Tennessee Titans
Last week: #22. Lost to New England, 34-13.
Jake Lockers was actually pretty decent before he got hurt, but “CJ2K” hasn’t shown up since signing his massive contract last year.
28. St. Louis Rams
Last week: #32. Lost to Detroit 27-23.
I called the defense out last week, and they stepped up, picking off 3 passes in the loss to the Lions. Sam Bradford played a solid if unspectacular game.
29. Indianapolis Colts
Last week: #26. Lost to Chicago 41-21.
If you read my game recap, you’ll know I say this was a game of “what ifs” for Indy. I still think Chicago would have won big, but I also still think the Colts are better than they played last week.
30. Miami Dolphins
Last week: #27. Lost to Houston, 30-10.
Ryan Tannehill threw three picks and zero TDs, Reggie Bush only ran for 69 yards, and the defense couldn’t keep my grandmother out of the end zone, let alone Arian Foster.
31. Jacksonville Jaguars
Last week: #28. Lost to Minnesota, 26-23.
The good news: MJD looked strong, and Blaine Gabbert was very effective. The bad news? They’re still the Jaguars.
32. Cleveland Browns
Last week: #31. Lost to Philadelphia, 17-16.
Yes, they played a close game. Yes their defense intercepted Mike Vick 4 times. But Brandon Weeden looked absolutely terrible, and Trent Richardson was not effective at all coming off his injury. This is still a bad team.
Follow me on Twitter @expertfan1