Well I realize this week this post is a bit at the 11th hour, but I post my rankings yearly on multiple sites, so I might as well do the same here. Each week I will list NFL teams in order from best to worst. I will group them as the Fine Fifteen and as the Insignificants. Each week I will at least post comments by my Fine Fifteen.
The Fine Fifteen
1. Indianapolis Colts- Make any case you want for the teams below them, but no one else man-handled a team that nearly everyone is picking to make it to the Super Bowl in week one like the Colts did. If the defense can be half as affective as they were last week through the entire season, we will be looking at 16-0.
2. New England Patriots- They looked incredible versus the Jets, cheating or no cheating you cannot deny that Moss is back and that Tom Brady has more weapons than he could ever need. Pats-Chargers should be an excellent game this week.
3. Denver Broncos- Early curveball, eh? I absolutely love their secondary and in today's NFL that is vastly underrated. Lee Evans essentially didn't even exist in their last game. Travis Henry fits their running scheme perfectly as a power back with cutback ability and I absolutely love Jay Cutler as an NFL QB. Javon Walker and Marshall will provide a solid WR core and Daniel Grahm is possibly the best blocking tight end in the league. Expect a first round bye for the Broncos this year.
4. San Diego Chargers- Okay, the Chargers are hardly free falling, but I hate Norv Turner as a head coach, he is hardly an upgrade of Martyball. I don't hold their inability to run against the Bears against them, but I would prefer to see more out of Philip Rivers.
5. Cincinnati Bengals- I realize I seem to do this every year, but they looked impressive against a Ravens team predicted to win the division again. If you need a fantasy defense bad this week, consider the Bengals against the lowly Browns.
6. Tennesse Titans- Listen, I don't think they'll make the playoffs either, but when Chris Brown (who could have been anyone's free agent pick-up) and Lendale White (all 240lbs of him) light up a top three run defense for over 250 yards, you get the 6th spot in my power rankings. This offensive line was previously the most underrated unit in football.
7. Dallas Cowboys- I love the Cowboys in the NFC this year. I love their offense. I think that Tony Romo is for real, that Patrick Crayton is an even better complement to TO that Glenn, that Witten is a perfect safety valve, that Marion Barber III has one of the best noses for the end zone, and that Julius Jones is a decent tailback. I am beginning to wonder if Wade Phillips will work that defensive magic I promised. I know their were missing their best corner, but you can't give up that many points to a team deemed as offensively challenged especially when they lose their runningback early.
8. Carolina Panthers- Simialr to the Bengals, I expect too much out of them every year. This year all I expect is for them to be in playoff contention maybe 8-8ish, but they impressed me a lot in week one.
9. Pittsburgh Steelers- I realize they played the Browns, which may soon become a bye week in the NFL this year, but Big Ben produced, Holmes seems to be growing, and Tomlin and Leabau have their defensive balance figured out.
10. New Orleans Saints- I understand their offense looked anemic, but that won't repeat. If anyone else here happens to be a fantasy football player (which is you are please let me know), trade for Drew Brees overreactions are happening everywhere. You might get him for Tony Romo.
11. Chicago Bears- Well until the fourth quarter, they looked like the much better team in San Diego. Cedric Benson will be their downfall though. Trading Thomas Jones for peanuts will cause them to lose an additional two or three games this year. Their defense certainly played well enough to win, their special teams played well enough to win, Rex Grossman even played well enough to win, but their runningbacks did not.
12. Philadelphia Eagles- Last year the Packers charged the Patriots with taping their defensive signals like the Jets did this year. Oh you need to cheat to beat the Packers? Someone should have let Andy Reid know. The bottomline though, if they would have a punt returner on their roster they would be 1-0 today. For the love of God never let Greg Lewis field another kick or to quote Joe Buck, "Greg Lewis is doing a good job of letting everyone know he has never fielded punts before."
13. Baltimore Ravens- Oh boy four straight teams with losing records. They lost to Cincinnati in Cinci during a game they should have at least taken to overtime (pass interference on Todd Heap? For what?). I don't like Steve McNair, but this team should be in fine shape with their defense this year.
14. Seattle Seahawks- Shaun Alexander certainly looked up to his old tricks. So much for my expected D.J. Hackett breakout, granted he is injured, but I don't know if he gets the job back from Burlesson. We'll consider them more once they beat a team not named the Buccaneers.
15. Minnesota Vikings- So what if I don't have a reason? I am getting my favorite team in here because they may not be able to again this year. I love the formula for winning though: face Joey Harrington, have two interception returns for touchdowns, turn over the ball only once (on a deflected pass), and let Adrian Peterson bust a big play. Gosh Adrian Peterson looked good.
16. Detroit Lions (1-0)
17. San Fransisco 49ers (1-0)
18. Washington Redskins (1-0)
19. St. Louis Rams
20. Jacksonville Jaguars
21. Green Bay Packers (1-0)
22. New York Jets
23. New York Giants
24. Buffalo Bills
25. Arizona Cardinals
26. Oakland Raiders
27. Houston Texans
28. Miami Dolphins
29. Kansas City Chiefs
30. Tampa Bay Buccaneers
31. Atlanta Falcons
32. Cleveland Browns
Its sad that it takes us to a seventh team to get an NFC team listed and honestly that might be high for the Cowboys after their loss of Jason Ferguson. Also, I'm looking forward to seeing Jared Lorenzen play for the Giants not for his ability, but because he is Jared Lorenzen. The Falcons and Browns will probably find themselves fighting at the bottom of this board all year. I bet Jerry Jones does cartwheels on a regular basis on the thought of stealing Darren McFadden with a number one or two pick (don't get yourself fooled, Atlanta will take Brohme).