Redskins interested in Aqib Talib
Percy Harvin heading to Seahawks
Anquan Boldin traded to the 49ers for 6th round pick
Ravens made Joe Flacco highest paid QB in NFL
Bruins beat Senators in overtime shootout 3-2 Monday March 12
Blackhawks lose 2 straight games
Yankees targeting Derrek Lee and Chipper Jones
Deron Williams drops 42 points in Nets victory over Washington
Giants Pulling for 49ers to join Championship Party
NHL'ers picking 49ers to win Super Bowl
Allen, Ogden, Carter, Parcells, Sapp among Hall of Fame Class 2013
Peterson edges Manning for NFL MVP
Peyton Manning named A.P. Comeback player of the year
RGIII named A.P. Rookie of the year
J.J. Watt Named Defensive Player of the Year
Bruce Arians first interim to win A.P. Coach of the year
B.C. Alum Luke Kuechly wins Defensive Rookie of the Year
Captials John Erskine suspended 3 games for elbowing
Chris Bourque scores 1st goal as Bruins take down Maple Leafs 1-0
Celtics Jared Sullinger out rest of the season with Back Injury
A-Rod back on the hot seat for PED's
Giants Pulling for 49ers to join Championship Party
Kevin Millwood to retire after 16 Seasons
NFL CONFERENCE CHAMPIONSHIPS
New England gets dominated by Baltimore Ravens 28-13
San Francisco 49ers overcome 24-0 halftime deficit and beat Falcons 28-24
John Harbaugh praises class of Bill Belichick
David Akers to remain 49ers Kicker for Super Bowl
Bill Belichick to return as Patriots Head Coach Next Season
Tom Brady mentions he would like to see Wes Welker resigned Next Season
Tom Brady, Wes Welker, Vince Wilfork and Logan Mankins pull out of Pro Bowl
Doc Rivers threatens Trades if Celtics do not improve
Doug Hamilton looking sharp for Bruins
Bruins improve to 2-0 after overtime shootout win again Winnipeg
Who will win the 2013 Super Bowl, teams in order of least to most likely
12) Minnesota Vikings (10-6) - Adrian Peterson otherwise known as 99% of the Vikings offense had a legendary year and the Vikings have much improved since last year but A.P. and a so-so defense will not be enough to bring the Lombardi Trophy to Viking land.
11) Indianapolis Colts (11-5) - The Colts have come a long way since last year and Andrew Luck certainly has brought a bright light to Indy since the Peyton Manning days. The Colts will continue to get better but there's too much inconsistency in their offense and their defense is questionable and with a road that involves the Ravens and perhaps Patriots in the 2nd round, it will be very tough for the Colts to come out on top.
10) Cincinnati Bengals (10-6) - The Bengals proved to be a force in the AFC and if they can get by the Houston Texans anything is possible but a meeting with the Broncos or Patriots in the next round will prove too much to handle for the Bengals.
9) Baltimore Ravens (10-6) - I ranked the Ravens a little higher than I would have if Ray Lewis did not announce his retirement after this season, I think the announcement of Ray hanging up the cleats will provide some momentum for the Ravens to potentially have a special year in the post season but their is still way too much inconsistency with the Ravens offense.
8) Seattle Seahawks (11-5) - The Seahawks showed they can win on the road, they're a legitimate contender and they can compete with the best, but I would give it 1 or 2 more years before you see Seattle in a Super Bowl.
7) Houston Texans (12-4) - The Texans were the best all around team in the AFC for the better part of the season but only beat 2 teams above .500 and showed they struggle against the elite as they played themselves out of a bye week in the last few games of the season.
6) Washington Redskins (10-6) - The Redskins ended the season on a 7 game winning streak. RG3 has taken control of the Skins offense and the Redskins are scary because they have a great defense and now with RG3 they have the offense they need to compete with the best.
5) Atlanta Falcons (13-3) - The Falcons struggled in their last 5 games going 3-2 and have been 1 and done the last few seasons in the playoffs but since they have a much improved defense if Matt Ryan can get the Falcons offense going the Falcons can compete with the best.
4) S.F. 49ers (12-4) - The 49ers are a solid all around team but showed they are beatable as they went 3 and 2 in their last 5 and did not have the hardest schedule this season, it is still a question as to if Colin Kaepernick can keep up with a high powered offense on a consistent basis.
3) Green Bay Packers (11-5) - After a rough start to the season, Aaron Rodgers did what he normally does and the Packers were firing on all cylinders for a better part of the season. They have arguably the best offense in the playoffs but their shaky defense could end up being a downfall.
2) Denver Broncos (13-3) - Peyton Manning returned and did what he does best all season long. Manning showed he is still the same elite Q.B. he has been his entire career and has helped the Broncos become the best team record wise in the AFC.
1) New England Patriots (12-4) - Even though I am a Patriots fan, I have not favored them usually to win the Super Bowl but with Gronk back healthy and the fact the Patriots defense has played better on a weekly basis, I give Brady a great shot to bring home his 4th ring.
Wild Card Weekend
Houston Defeats Cincinnati 23-20
Green Bay Defeats Minnesota 33-27
Baltimore Defeats Indianapolis 24-21
Washington Defeats Seattle 27-24
Denver Defeats Baltimore 31-24
Atlanta Defeats Washington 27-24
New England Defeats Houston 34-27
Green Bay Defeats S.F. 31-28
New England Defeats Denver 34-31
Green Bay Defeats Atlanta 30-21
New England Defeats Green Bay 37-34
Here is the Week 11 Power Rankings Based on the way Week 10 of the NFL Season Went
32) Jacksonville Jaguars (1-8)
31) Kansas City Chiefs (1-8)
30) Cleveland Browns (2-7)
29) Carolina Panthers (2-7)
28) Oakland Raiders (3-6)
27) St. Louis Rams (3-5)
26) Buffalo Bills (3-6)
25) New York Jets (3-6)
24) Tennessee Titans (4-6)
23) Washington Redskins (3-6)
22) Philadelphia Eagles (3-6)
21) Arizona Cardinals (4-5)
20) Cincinnati Bengals (4-5)
19) Miami Dolphins (4-5)
18) Detroit Lions (4-5)
17) San Diego Chargers (4-5)
16) Dallas Cowboys (4-5)
15) Tampa Bay Buccaneers (5-4)
14) New Orleans Saints (4-5)
13) Minnesota Vikings (6-4)
12) Seattle Seahawks (6-4)
11) Indianapolis Colts (6-3)
10) Pittsburgh Steelers (6-3) - Not definite yet but Big Ben could be out for the season which could mark the end of Steelers playoff run chances.
9) New York Giants (6-4) - The Giants have been on and off all season but remember they were 9-7 last season and won the Super Bowl.
8) Denver Broncos (6-3) - The Broncos are on fire as they have won their last 4 and with Peyton Manning anything is possible for the Mile High.
7) Baltimore Ravens (7-2) - The Ravens defense is depleted but they are still finding ways to win and will be a threat in the AFC.
6) New England Patriots (6-3) - The Defense continues to struggle giving up over 400 yards to the Buffalo Bills but the offense continues to flourish and look strong
5) Green Bay Packers (6-3) - The Packers like the Patriots are very much an offensive team but they are on a 4 game winning streak even with missing 2 of their best receivers in Greg Jennings and Jordy Nelson.
4) San Francisco 49ers (6-2) - The 49ers are one of the most well rounded teams in the NFL but the question is will they have enough offensive power to go to the next level.
3) Chicago Bears (7-2) - The Bears have shown their defense has drastically improved but Jay Cutler has not proved that the offense can fare well against a strong defense with last weeks loss to the Texans, another negative is Cutler suffered a concussion during the game.
2) Atlanta Falcons (8-1) - Despite losing to the Saints, the Falcons are still the best all around team in Football and should have no problem getting the number 1 seed in the NFC.
1) Houston Texans (8-1) - The Texans showed with the win against the Bears they can win the low scoring defensive games as well as the high scoring games and are the best all around team in the AFC. The Texans have the best point differential in the league as they have scored 250 and only given up 143 points.
Week 2 NFL Power Rankings
Much Like a good Sandwhich, the two end pieces of the Rankings stay roughly the same, the bad teams are still bad, and the good teams are still good, its the meat of the rankings that have changed quite a bit. Lets see how everyone looks this week.
32.(30) Miami Dolphins
Not much to say about this team here, they were dominated in every area of the game Sunday against Houston. They could not stop the run game, Arian Foster and the rest of the running game ran all over them, Andre Johnson was not covered at all, and J.J. Watt wasn't blocked, from the opening kickoff till Ryan Tannehill's last interception, this game was an overall failure.
The only bright spot I took from this game? Tannehill didn't look atrocious, he just doesn't have a supporting staff. He showed good arm strength and accuracy that led the 'Fins to draft him so early in the draft. He should give Dolphins' fans some hope...not this year though...or next...or next
31.(31) Cleveland Browns
No movement here. Yup, the Browns lost this week, you'll see that a lot with the Browns, but hey, at least they put up a fight against the Eagles. Sure, they lost, but you know what, they were in the game all 60 minutes. I doubt anyone in Cleveland is complaining about a one point loss to a team that most assume (myself included) will win the NFC East. The Browns showed me something I haven't seen from them in a long time, toughness, especially on the defense, which was outstanding, the secondary and linebacker units will make this team palatable for Cleveland this year.
That being said, the offense was equally abysmal. Rookie quarterback Brandon Weeden struggled from the first snap, completing just 12 of 35 passes for 118 yards, and 4 picks. How bad was he? His quarterback rating was...wait for it...out of 158.3...HE HAD A 5.
In a game where the defense did their part, the offense is the sole reason for a loss and the team's No. 31 overall ranking.
30.(30) Seattle Seahawks
Tough loss to the Cardinals this week, more of a choke job really. The Seahawks won't be able to find many positives from this game, but there were a few. Russel Wilson (who is 5'11, a midget if your a quarterback) was solid for the most part, solid enough that he might have won the starting QB job going forward...at least until Matt Flynn comes to form...if he comes to form.
The defense looked solid, keeping the game close when the offense couldn't generate points. There's enough potential here that if the Seahawks can find a spark on offense, they'll be able to rise up the board. The glaring thing this team needs right now...a healthy Marshawn Lynch...and some clutch.
29.(32) Arizona Cardinals
The NFL is a tough place to play, and you get wins when you get them, and the Cards got one this week. The Arizona Cardinals survived an injury to quarterback John Skelton and came away with a win thanks to backup Kevin Kolb's go-ahead drive. They were not great by any stretch of the imagination, but you know what? They were good enough to win late. The defense stepped up as well.
That being said...the offense is still a huge concern for the Cardinals heading into week 2 against the Patriots. Skelton went out injured and the mobile Kolb had to move around in the pocket to make plays. The offensive line allowed only one sack, but that's as much a credit to the quick throws of the quarterbacks. Further complicating matters was the fact that the run game remained grounded by the same offensive line problems.
28.(28) Indianapolis Colts
Probably not the start Andrew Luck wanted in his first NFL contest (four turnovers.) But lets all remember, the Colts are still rebuilding, and when he wasn't turning the ball over, Luck looked very good at times. Reggie Wayne had an unbelievable game, he clearly still has it. Despite allowing 41 points, the defense did show some flashes, even with Dwight Freeney going out, its a small something...but its something.
The offensive line really needs to improve, Luck was constantly under pressure with the elite pass rush Chicago has, and that alone shut down Indy's offense.
Its going to be a bumpy road for the Colts, but there is promise.
27.(27) Oakland Raiders
The only good thing coming out of this game for the Raider's is that Darren McFadden finally appears to be back...and healthy. That will be an important thing because after watching that game Monday night, it appears the Raiders will be relying on him a lot this season, rushing 13 times for 86 yards. McFadden showed he still had the breakaway speed that made him a fan favorite when he was drafted. The defensive front seven also looked strong, constantly putting pressure on Phillip Rivers.
All that being said, besides McFadden, The Raiders offense just stunk up the joint. The Raiders have good wide receivers, but play after play, Carson Palmer just kept going to McFadden, but he had too, because his O-Line was so bad he just kept getting pressured all game. Hell, even their special teams were bad, not looking very good for Oakland this year, duh.
26.(22) Jacksonville Jaguars
It goes without saying, but with this team it all starts with Blaine Gabbert and MJD. Gabbert looked very strong in the preseason, and he continued his play into the regular season. Everyone picked on Gabbert last year for his poor play making and lack of pocket presence, but Gabbert clearly focused on that during the off season and came out Sunday a new composed and accurate self.
So many players, when they do the whole “holdout” thing struggle into the season and see their production slip, see: CJ2K, but that clearly wasn't the case here, MJD looked like his old self, okay maybe not 100% old Jones-Drew, but he was able to take a lot of pressure of Gabbert on offense.
But saying all that, it was still a loss, and a tough one in overtime. Coming into the season, the defense was supposed to be a strength of this team but allowing 26 points TO THE VIKINGS is not a good defense. Adrian Peterson racked up nearly 100 yards on a still recovering knee and allowing Christian Ponder to only throw 6 in-completions was just too much for this team to overcome.
25.(19) Carolina Panthers
Good news for the football world: It would appear Cam Newtons phenomenal season last year was not a fluke and there won't be a sophomore slump, for this week at least. Newton was excellent Sunday, throwing for over 300 yards, and he showed much of the energy that we all came to enjoy last season. The defense steeped up as well, holding the Bucs to just 16 points.
Why didn't they win? The run game...where was it? I spoke of this team having a 3 headed monster out of the running back spot, but that was nowhere to be seen. Normally, if the running game had been working from the running back spot, you would have seen Newton running, but because the running from the RB's was not there, Newton was forced to throw the ball a lot more.
24.(29) St. Louis Rams
Yes, they lost. But losing by 4 points to the Lions when your projected to be one of the worse teams in the league is a big win for this team. Janoris Jenkins and Cortland Finnegan were superb in forcing Matthew Stafford into poor decisions—and that led to three first-half interceptions by the Lions quarterback. The fact this team was hurt going into this game and were able to stick around is a major moral victory.
As good as the defense looked, they couldn't finish the job. By the fourth quarter, Stafford was back on track and was finding openings without missing a beat. It also looks like the problems the Rams had last year with their offensive line have carried on into this season, with Bradford under pressure most of the game.
23.(24) Minnesota Vikings
Adrian Peterson is back, and that is very good news for the Vikings. Christian Ponder had a surprisingly effective day, working the ball down field, but he put the team in a good position when the team could run it in, which this team needs to do as a running team.
The defense was hot and cold, and the cornerback play is still an issue. For as good as the run game was, the passing game will have to be much more complex if they want to win games. And where was Jared Allen? The guy who led the NFL in sacks last year and almost tied the single-season sack record was invisible on Sunday against a quarterback who couldn't stay in the pocket last year.
22.(23) San Diego Chargers
A win is a win, and the San Diego Chargers will take it. Moving to 1-0 on the schedule puts the Chargers in an early tie with the Denver Broncos as the division leaders. The San Diego defense settled down in this game, showing up in the second half and completely shutting down the Oakland run game. Melvin Ingram looked like he could be the player the Chargers hope he will become. The Special teams play of the Chargers was particularity effective.
However, for as good as Phillip Rivers looked at times, he looked terrible at others. He struggled to set his feet in the pocket, which led to overthrows on wide-open receivers. The offensive line let Rivers and the offense down in this one
21.(16) Buffalo Bills
BAD, BAD, BAD, BAD, BAD. The best thing that happened to the Bills in their game against the Jets is that the game came to an end. You can't take much good away from a 48-28 thumping, especially when the game wasn't as close as the final score might indicate. If the Bills are even going to dream about having a chance this season, they have to get over this game NOW.
There was nothing good about the absolute beat down the Bills suffered at the hands of the New York Jets. Fred Jackson's injury is the lasting black eye from this punch in the face, and it's an injury that will severely limit what Buffalo can do over the next four to six weeks. The offense wasn't great with Jackson; \they'll be in even more serious trouble without him.
20.(21) Tampa Bay Buccaneers
The defensive line played an amazing all-around game, shutting down the Carolina Panthers run game and keeping Cam Newton from getting comfortable as a runner. That alone was good enough for the Bucs to get their first win in 11 games. The rookies played very well in this one.
the passing game on offense was missing however. Josh Freeman didn't take many chances down field, and his 16 yards passing in the second half left the door open for the Panthers. For the Buccaneers to compete in the NFC South, they need Freeman to open things up offensively.
19.(18) Tennessee Titans
After a strong showing in the preseason, the Tennessee Titans pass rush looked very good against the New England Patriots. Before going down with an injury, Jake Locker looked solid at quarterback. Locker wasn't blowing the doors off the defense, but he was showing why the Titans made him the starting quarterback. Very good runner as well.
That being said, An injured Jake Locker and a loss isn't how the team wanted to end the first week of the season. Chris Johnson looked terrible, rushing for just four yards all game on 11 carries. The Patriots aren't known as an elite defense, but they bottled up Johnson without much trouble. The offensive line did struggle to push the Patriots defense, but Johnson was going down at first contact too often. The Titans have talent, but with or without Locker, the team simply did not play well enough versus the Pats, in every aspect.
18.(26) New York Jets
Admit it, we all knew the Jets would lead the NFL in points in week one, come on, we all knew they would. But seriously, this just goes to show you that preseason means absolutely nothing. Mark Sanchez must have been saving his touchdowns for the regular season, tearing apart a Buffalo defense that was supposed to be elite. Sanchez was phenomenal in the opener, giving us all good reason to reevaluate our opinions on the QB. If this is the Sanchez the Jets will play with all season, a wild-card berth is an absolute possibility.
However, there are things to be concerned with. An injury to Darrelle Revis will change the fundamentals of the Jets defense in every way. Revis left the game early with an apparent head injury, and he could miss the next game. All in all, this was a very good game for the Jets. They've quieted many of those who doubted Rex Ryan's ability to get this team playing together as a unit.
17.(13) Kansas City Chiefs
If you ignore the score and just watch the game, the Chiefs didn't look terrible. Matt Cassel played a very solid game. His stat line doesn't accurately reflect the interception that bounced off his receiver, or the dropped passes of his targets. Cassel was good, not great, in a game that showed he can be the leader of this team. The best news is that Eric Berry and Jamaal Charles are back.
After keeping the game close until halftime, the Chiefs rolled over and let the Atlanta Falcons run all over them. The hope is that the absences of Tamba Hali, Brandon Flowers and Kendrick Lewis are to blame for the team's massive capitulation on Sunday—not a schematic or coaching problem.
16.(24) Washington Redskins
Hey, This RG3 kid ain't half bad. The Redskins were dominant, and even when the New Orleans Saints fought back, the team was able to fight point for point to keep their lead and win a game that no one thought they had the right of winning. A big reason for that was the rookie quarterback.
Where Washington can look to get better is on defense. Allowing 25 points is too much, I don't care who you are facing.
15.(10) Philadelphia Eagles
The Eagles won, no got injured and LeSean McCoy is one of the best runners in football. Other then that, Otherwise, there's not much good to write home about for Philadelphia. The defense allowed just 16 points, but they were playing the Cleveland Browns...with a rookie quarterback who threw for 188 yards.
At times it looked the Eagles were trying to loss this game. Michael Vick threw the ball 56 times, all while Andy Reid ignored his top-ranked running back McCoy. The general thought around the league was that the only good part about the Browns would be their pass defense, and in that respect it looked like Reid was trying to fit a round peg in a square hole.
14.(14) Pittsburgh Steelers
No change here for the Steelers, yes they lost, but they didn't look like a loser. Ben Roethlisberger is back to being Ben Roethlisberger. In a good way. The Steelers offense rolled—despite playing in the Mile High atmosphere, despite drops by Antonio Brown and despite multiple injuries on the offensive line. Big Ben was the captain this team needed for a tough, hard-fought game against a very good defense. The Pittsburgh defense also looked solid in limiting Peyton Manning. Ike Taylor matched up well—save for one play—against Demaryius Thomas, and the loss of Ryan Clark and James Harrison weren't major factors throughout the game.
The O-line wasn't great. Injuries are to blame, especially once Marcus Gilbert went down, but overall, this unit gets a poor grade for their play. The Steelers were in this game all along, but the offense could have been much more effective with some strong protection. On the flip side, the Steelers were able to keep this game close, but in the fourth quarter they couldn't stop the Broncos from running through the middle of the defense. The major hurdle is to find a starting five who can consistently line up and protect the passer, and then to get healthy on both sides of the ball.
13.(12) Cincinnati Bengals
Well...no one got injured...other then that, its back to the drawing board for the Bengals. If there was one bright spot for Cincinnati, it has to be slot receiver Andrew Hawkins. His ability to catch and run will give the Bengals a nice option outside of A.J. Green in the passing game.
The Bengals entered half time trailing 17-10 and managed to lose 44-13. The Baltimore Ravens took Cincy to the woodshed in the second half, pulling away in every way imaginable. The Bengals must find a way to protect Andy Dalton better.
12.(15) Denver Broncos
Okay, I was wrong, Peyton Manning isn't done quite yet. No. 18 looked like the future Hall of Famer we've all come to know and love. He was lacking the old arm strength, but other then that, it was good old Manning, and by old..I mean wise, he still can command a game like no ones business. Demaryius Thomas and the wide receivers played great.
Only thing I can complain about...the defense allowed too many completions. Other then that, a very solid showing.
11.(11) Detroit Lions
You can't complain about a win, and the Detroit Lions were able to put the St. Louis Rams away. This one was too close for comfort, though. The fact that the team was able to overcome so many turnovers by Stafford was encouraging. The Team will have to improve all around if they want to move up.
Still have to worry about three interceptions in the first half and allowing the St. Louis Rams to score 23 points.
10.(6) New York Giants
Losing to the Dallas Cowboys always hurts, and the New York Giants' weaknesses were exposed in this one. Eli Manning was rattled by dropped passes and hard hits, which forced him to make questionable throws that killed drives. The defense was supposed to anchor this team, but the feared front four produced just two sacks Romo was too easily finding targets when flushed from the pocket.
The Giants' key players did what they're supposed to. Eli Manning, Jason Pierre-Paul and Hakeem Nicks all played well enough to win on Wednesday night. The team was in position to win several times, and as we saw last year, if the Giants aren't put away early they can hang around and make a run late.
9.(5) New Orleans Saints
While the offense generated a ton of points, their game plan was flawed. They failed to try and establish a run game, opting instead to continue dropping Drew Brees back against a pass rush and secondary that was causing problems. The rhythm of the offense was terrible in Week 1, which is where the loss of Sean Payton really shows up. For the Saints to bounce back, they need the offense to find more balance, but the real key is on defense. Allowing 40 points to a rookie quarterback isn't going to cut it. The defense never got going. Griffin was able to stand tall and find time to throw without any real struggles.
Brees had a big day with 339 yards and three touchdowns, but ultimately that wasn't enough. The good news is that the Saints can now regroup and figure out what's working and what's not. Against the Panthers next week, they have an opportunity to get back on track.
8.(17) Dallas Cowboys
A win over the Superbowl Champions...not a bad way to start the season. The Dallas Cowboys were better than the 24-17 final score would indicate. The offensive line did a fine job protecting Tony Romo against a front four that was hyped as the best in the game, which only sacked Romo just twice all game. However...I thought Romo would end up choking in this one...just like they always do...but they didn't!
I want to know if Dallas can keep up the hype, they've knocked off the champs, but now they have a big target on their back. Romo looked good, but he showed he still prone to make the stupid mistakes hes always been prone to.
7.(9) Atlanta Falcons
Matt Ryan and the offense were rolling on Sunday. Julio Jones scored twice, Ryan ran another in and the passing game in general looked as good as it ever has during Ryan's time in Atlanta.
The Falcons did win, but they also beat up a Kansas City team missing three starters on defense.
6.(7) Chicago Bears
The Bears didn't play their best football Sunday, and that is concerning when your playing the Colts. The mark of a good team is that even on their worst of days, they find a way to win. The Bears didn't have their best day, especially in the first half, but they were still 20 points better than the Indianapolis Colts—a huge margin of victory no matter the opponent.
Brandon Marshall had a big game for fantasy football players, but a look at his actual play will leave many disappointed. Marshall dropped too many passes, leaving Jay Cutler out to dry twice in the end zone. For the Bears' passing attack to really take off, Marshall can't have two dropped touchdowns. Chicago's schedule is also going to get a lot tougher as well.
5.(4) Houston Texans
When you get to the Top 5, the Rankings get really tough to move up and down, that's the case for Houston here, who stays pat despite a win, against the Dolphins. J.J. Watt is quickly becoming one of the NFL's most dominant defenders. We saw it in the 2011 playoffs, and that same ability was on display again this week. Watt and the Houston defense did exactly what was expected of them against the Miami Dolphins. Arian Foster and Andre Johnson looked like their regular All-Pro selves in this one. Johnson led the way for the passing game, and Foster's two touchdowns contributed to a 20-point win.
The Houston Texans will win a lot of football games if they play like they did in this one. They are my Super Bowl pick moving forward.
4.(8) Baltimore Ravens
The Baltimore Ravens turned a seven-point game at halftime into a 44-13 beat down on the strength of Joe Flacco, Ray Rice and a defense that didn't look like they miss Terrell Suggs at all. There is an absurd amount of talent on this team all-around, and it was on display Monday. Baltimore was able to get pressure off the edge by blitzing Ray Lewis more, but rolling in Paul Kruger and Albert McClellan, and by adjusting the scheme so that someone was consistently pressuring Andy Dalton. And it worked.
On offense the Ravens couldn't have looked better. Joe Flacco showed off his arm strength and Torrey Smith's first game in his second season was a great start for a player with breakout potential.
Hard to find anything bad to say about the Ravens...but didn't we see this last year?
3.(1) Green Bay Packers
Losing at home in Week 1 is tough, but there are correctable issues here. The offensive line played fairly well, but the ball has to come out faster. Running against the 49ers is almost impossible, but if the Packers can establish more of a run game moving forward, it will give Rodgers more time to execute off play action and a moving pocket.
However, on the plus side, Rogers still looked like an MVP candidate, Clay Mathews is still a beast. Bottom line: The Packers still have more talent than most teams in the NFL. One loss is easy to overcome, its up to them to do it.
2. (2) New England Patriots
Surprise...The Pats are still elite. Offense rolled through a very good Tennessee Titans defense en route to 34 points and an easy Week 1 win. The Boston TE Party was in full effect with tight ends Rob Gronkowski and Aaron Hernandez each scoring a touchdown,. And if they couldn't get any better, THE PATRIOTS FINALLY HAVE A RUN GAME! Stevan Ridley went over 100 yards and put the ball in the end zone.
The defense is tougher, younger and faster. They made Chris Johnson look like Laurence Maroney in the back field, knocked Jake Locker out of the game, and held Tennessee to just 13 points.
Only bad thing to say about the Pats is the O-Line is still a concern. Not as bad as they looked in preseason, they were much improved from what we last saw of them. Still, defenders were able to get to Brady, just ask his nose.
1. (3) San Francisco 49ers
Knocking off Green Bay in impressive fashion puts the San Francisco 49ers in the driver's seat in the NFC. It's early, but the 49ers are clearly the team to beat in the NFC as of this morning.
The offense was very efficient on Sunday, with Alex Smith working on quick reads and making timing-based throws to keep the Packers secondary and pass rush off balance. It worked well, as San Francisco was able to keep a comfortable lead all game.
NFL Replacement Referees: B
While I, like the rest of us I'm sure miss the actually NFL Referees, I give the Replacement Refs a B for this week, missed some calls if you go to deadspin.com they point out all the missed calls, nothing major, some holding calls, some pass interference calls, but I think even the regular refs would have missed them. But they did make some fundamental errors, and the one that sticks out in my mind was giving Seattle a 4th time out when they already used them up, that was just bad management by the Refs and something I think would not have happened if the NFL Refs were in place.
The reason I think the league will be relatively safe while the NFL/Owners and Refs work out their differences is because the game now-a-days pretty much runs itself. Referees will never be responsibly for missing a touchdown that may or may not have been in bounds or if a player has possession, or whether a player turns the ball over or not because all of those plays are now automatically reviewed without a coach's challenge, the owners made sure they put that in the CBA, which makes me think whether they saw this lockout coming.
Right now, the NFL has let teams know to prepare for Replacement Refs for the first 5 weeks of the season, and unless one of them really botches a call, the advantage is with and will remain with the NFL and the owners. But I still feel the game will be better managed with the real officials, then the ones we have now, but for now, as long as the focus remains on the teams in the shiny colors, and not the zebra's, we should still all be able to enjoy our football.
My Picks for this Week (9-7 Last Week(9-7 Overall))
Gotta do better to defend my crown!
Green Bay over Chicago
There’s going to be a lot of points given up this week, with most of them coming through the air. Aaron Rodgers' and Co. get back on track with a momentum-building win in a very tough game.
Kansas City over the Bills
If the Bills team we say this past Sunday is the real Bills team, then they are going to be in for a world of hurt. Cassel is a lot better then what he showed this week and the Chiefs should run over the Bills
Cincinnati over Cleveland
The Browns' defense was impressive against the Philadelphia Eagles, but the Bengals' offensive attack will be more balanced, and the Browns showed a weakness against the run. Cincy will shut down Brandon Weeden en route to a big win.
Colts over the Vikings
The Vikings' defense will be a tough test for Andrew Luck, especially their pass rush. If Luck can find time to throw, he'll be able to get completions against the sub-par cornerbacks in Minnesota's secondary.
Raiders over the Dolphins
Ryan Tannehill couldn't get the offense going in Week 1. That should be the same case against Oakland who didn't look bad against the Chargers.
Patriots over the Cardinals
Duh. But Larry Fitzgerald will be a real test for this Patriots secondary.
Giants over Buccaneers
Giants need to put that loss to the Cowboys behind them, and with such a bad passing offense like the Bucs have, that should be easy..
Eagles over the Ravens
This was probably the hardest pick of the week, the Eagles are one of the most talented teams in the NFL on paper and the Ravens are just plain nasty, but I just have a feeling the Eagles we saw against the Browns wasn't the real Eagles, plus I know Tom, Eric, Andy, and Steve will all pick the Ravens. I will say this though, if Vick has another game like he just had...Philly may put out a hit on him.
Saints over the Panthers
The Saints shouldn't have to pass 50 times against a Panthers defense that can't stop the run. Expect a big day from Pierre Thomas, Mark Ingram and Darren Sproles as the Saints pick up their first win
Houston over Jaguars
Blaine Gabbert looks good, but he will do nothing against Houston's D. Nothing to see here, moving on
Cowboys Over the Seahawks
Seattle is one of the toughest places to play for any team, but Dallas has the hot hand right now. If the offensive line plays like it did in Week 1, the Cowboys will leave Seattle with a 2-0 record.
Rams over Redskins
Robert Griffin III has proven in one game that he's going to be a nightmare for NFL defenses. The Rams have a very good defense and the overall speed to corral RG3 when he gets outside. I'm taking Jeff Fisher over Mike Shanahan in this one.
Jets over the Steelers
Two hard-hitting defenses face off, but it's New York who comes in with the hot-handed quarterback. Mark Sanchez quieted doubters in one game, and it's the New York offense that's being talked up as the reason for a 1-0 start. A banged up Pittsburgh roster is looking worse by the day.
Titans over the Chargers
The availability of Jake Locker will make the difference in this one. Kenny Britt is back, which helps the Tennessee offense, but the Titans will need more than four yards rushing from Chris Johnson to win this one. San Diego is talented, but the offensive line woes will have Tennessee dominating the line of scrimmage.
49ers over the Lions
The 49ers don't get a break after beating the Packers. The Lions were terrible in the first half as Matthew Stafford threw three interceptions. To beat the 49ers at home, Detroit has to be much more composed. It's tough to see that happening.
Falcons over the Broncos
Two of the best passing attacks from Week 1 face off in what should be a fun game. The Broncos beat a banged up Steeler team that may be overrated at this point. The Falcons' passing game, and what they can do with Michael Turner, will give them a slight edge in this one.
Here is the Week 2 Power Rankings Based on the way Week 1 of the NFL Season Went (#) represents Last Week Ranking
32 (31) Miami Dolphins (0-1) - Even worse than I thought, they might win 1 or 2 at most.
31 (32) Cleveland Browns (0-1) - Gave the Eagles a tough run, the defense looks pretty good for Cleveland but they have nothing offensively.
30 (30) Jacksonville Jaguars (0-1) - If you can't beat the Vikings good luck beating almost anyone.
29 (27) Seattle Seahawks (0-1) - Seattle could not keep up with an Arizona team with no offense...ick, perhaps they should have kept T.O.
28 (29) Arizona Cardinals (1-0) - They beat the Seahawks, still a lot to prove in Arizona.
27 (28) Minnesota Vikings (1-0) - They had a nice win against the Jags, but then again it was the Jags.
26 (26) Kansas City Chiefs (0-1) - The Chiefs defense looked awful against the Falcons but perhaps some promising signs on the offense.
25 (15) Buffalo Bills (0-1) The Bills drop 10 spots this week because their defense looked miserable against a scrappy Jets offense.
24 (22) Tennessee Titans (0-1) - The Titans looked miserable against the Patriots on both sides of the ball, it will be interesting to see what adjustments they make as next week comes.
23 (24) St. Louis Rams (0-1) - The Rams gave the Lions a run and played well on both sides of the ball perhaps a sign of good things to come for St. Louis.
22 (23) Oakland Raiders (0-1) The Raiders kept it close with the Chargers, but what continues to hurt the Chargers is the lack of discipline on their defense and it has cost the Raiders countless yards.
21 (20) Indianapolis Colts (0-1) - The Colts played the Bears in week 1 so I will give them a break and who expects the 1st game for a new quarterback to go well. Luck will get better, give it time.
20 (18) Cincinnati Bengals (0-1) The Bengals defense was completely garbage against the Ravens and got tired out and blown out.
19 (16) Carolina Panthers (0-1) - Panthers fans should be a bit concerned after a loss to the Bucs, especially with Cam Newton in his sophomore season, there is just something about sophomore starters.
18 (25) Tampa Bay Buccaneers (1-0) - After a nice win against Carolina perhaps Josh Freeman and the Bucs are back on track, there defense looked solid.
17 (11) Philadelphia Eagles (1-0) - The Eagles had a tough go at it with the Browns and even with so much talent on offense they struggled, if Vick goes down which always has a 50-50 shot the Eagles could be in big trouble.
16 (19) New York Jets (1-0) - The Jets crushed the Bills and dominated an awful defense and looked good but will have to get some W's against better defense to prove there not the same team that fell apart last season
15 (13) New Orleans Saints (0-1) - RG3 completely owned the Saints defense and Drew Brees will need a defense if New Orleans plans to win anything
14 (21) Washington Redskins (1-0) - RG3 could perhaps be better than anyone expected he was a powerhouse against the Saints throwing 19 for 26, 320 Yards and 2 touchdowns, the Redskins running game also looks like it could be a factor this year.
13 (8) Detroit Lions (1-0) - The Lions offense looked solid against the Rams, but the defense brings up big questions for Detroit, a little too close for comfort against the Rams this week.
12 (12) S.D. Chargers (1-0) - The Chargers had a nice game against the Raiders and the brand new running game looked good while Rivers looked solid, so the Chargers should be a threat all season long, but a lot of new faces for a deep playoff run.
11 (17) Dallas Cowboys (1-0) - The Cowboys got a great division win against the Giants Wednesday Night but early in the season the Cowboys have always been good, let's see if they can keep it up.
10 (10) Atlanta Falcons (1-0) - The Falcons crushed the Chiefs and the offense was terrific but let's face it, it was the Chiefs they beat. Show me more!
9 (9) Chicago Bears (1-0) - The Bears offense looked great against the Colts, and the O-Line appears to have gotten better but they must beat a better defense to move up.
8 (5) Pittsburgh Steelers (0-1) - The Broncos gave the Steelers a beat down and Peyton got the best of the Pittsburgh defense. The big questions for Pittsburgh is can their aging defense still keep up with the elite Qb's.
7 (7) Baltimore Ravens (1-0) - The Ravens looked good against the Bengals and Flacco was throwing bullets, we will see if they can keep it up but Flacco looks as if he may have improved with the passing game.
6 (14) Denver Broncos (1-0) - Peyton looked like vintage Peyton Manning on the field against the Steelers and if the Denver defense can play as strong as they did Sunday, Denver can beat anyone.
5 (4) Green Bay Packers (0-1) - The Packers defense still looked to have some kinks against Alex Smith and the 49ers but playing perhaps the toughest defense in the league in week 1 is always tough.
4 (1) New York Giants (0-1) - The Giants move down this week as they lost week 1 against the Cowboys, The Giants should be okay but Dallas seemed to have a solid formula to shut down Eli Manning.
3 (3) Houston Texans (1-0) - The Texans crushed Miami, but it was Miami. I am looking forward to seeing the Texans against a better offense. They did look terrific on both sides of the ball however.
2 (6) S.F. 49ers (1-0) - If you can put up 40 against the Packers and beat them in week 1 that makes you the current best in the NFC in my book. Alex Smith seems to have improved and Randy Moss appears that he will be a threat for the 49ers this year.
1 (2) New England Patriots (1-0) - I know they played a Titans team with a new Quarterback but the Patriots looked solid on both sides of the ball and if Brady has a good defense this year look out!
The NFL is back and based on last season, training camp and all the roster moves here is this seasons power rankings!
32) Cleveland Browns - The Browns have an extremely loyal fan base but they will continue to be terrible for years to come sorry Cleveland.
31) Miami Dolphins - They have no Quarterback, Wide Receivers or Running backs and on top of that they have no defense and pretty much no team. The Dolphins will sink fast.
30) Jacksonville Jaguars - Maurice Jones Drew is all they have and he does not even want to be there.
29) Arizona Cardinals - The Cardinals will likely start John Skelton and will not have to many wins with a slim offense and a very shaky defense.
28) Minnesota Vikings - The Vikings will need Adrian Peterson to be a monster this season as Joe Webb and Toby Gerhart are their Qb's. They do have hope but it is very little hope in a tough NFC North.
27) Seattle Seahawks - The Seahawks are in the weakest division in the NFL so who knows maybe they will get a playoff run if the 49ers somehow fall apart. Matt Flynn should give the Seahawks a decent QB.
26) Kansas City Chiefs - Matt Cassel has shown the past couple years to not quite be what the Chiefs hoped, expect Brady Quinn or Alex Tanney to give Cassel a run for his job if the Chiefs season starts out rough.
25) Tampa Bay Buccaneers - Josh Freeman had a rough year last year but a very good first year, so the Bucs season will really rely on how Freeman plays in his 3rd year.
24) St. Louis Rams - The Rams could be a surprise this year if Sam Bradford and Steven Jackson can step it up, last year Bradford threw a ridiculous amount of interceptions and like Freeman had a bad Sophomore year after a terrific first season.
23) Oakland Raiders - You never know what you are going to get out of the Raiders, they usually start off strong but fall apart because of disciplinary problems on their defense. Last year McFadden faced numerous injuries and the Raiders never were able to overcome it. If Carson Palmer is able to go back to his prime they could have a solid season and be competitive but don't expect a playoff birth anytime soon in Oakland.
22) Tennessee Titans - The Titans will likely end up starting Jake Locker over Hasselbeck to bring in the youth as they know Hasselbeck's time is limited as a legit starter. The Titans season will depend on if Chris Johnson can be more consistent with the running game and if Kenny Britt can stay out of jail or off the IR.
21) Washington Redskins - The Skins actually have hope this year and finally may have a QB as Robert Griffen III is set to start and with Pierre Garcon on the receiving core and a strong defense, the Skins may be a competitive team this year but don't expect a playoff birth as they are in the same division as Philly, Dallas and the Giants but within the next couple years look out for the Redskins they have a big pay role and are starting to put together a pretty solid team.
20) Indianapolis Colts - The Colts will be a wait and see team this year but should give the Texans a run for the division as Andrew Luck looks to be a solid QB that makes smart decisions. I don't think it will take Luck long to run the Colts offense and within the next couple years the Colts should be back to a competitive team within the AFC.
19) New York Jets - I may be ranking them too high here considering they went 8 and 8 last year and looked terrible in preseason but Rex Ryan knows how to run a defense so perhaps the Jets will be competitive and maybe Tim Tebow will play a role in their running game cough cough I mean as a QB and help the Jets but don't count on a playoff birth for the Jets.
18) Cincinnati Bengals - The Bengals did a terrific job last year getting a playoff birth under QB Andy Dalton and should be competitive this year as they have a solid running game and a pretty good defense but the fact they are in the same division as Baltimore and Pittsburgh does not help their cause.
17) Dallas Cowboys - I have lost faith that Romo can be clutch, I just don't see it happening lookout for another collapse by America's Team.
16) Carolina Panthers - Thats right Panthers at the half way mark of my rankings and it's for one reason CAM NEWTON! Look out NFC!
15) Buffalo Bills - I have high hopes for the Bills this year and they should be in the run for a wild card. If Ryan Fitzpatrick and the Bills offense can do what they did last year in the first half all season long they will be good. This year the Bills also added some defensive pieces such as Mario Williams that should help their defense quickly go from terrible to pretty good.
14) Denver Broncos - Peyton Manning will be the key this season for the Broncos. The big question is will Peyton be what he used to be or a shadow of his old self. The defense is not to strong in Denver and the receiving core is decent at best so it will certainly be interesting to see what Peyton can do.
13) New Orleans Saints - Despite being without head coach Sean Payton and a number of players such as Jonathan Vilma due to Bounty Gate, they will be a good team and a threat to win the NFC South because they have Drew Brees and he can run any offense.
12) San Diego Chargers - The Chargers performed well below expectations last year, I can't imagine they will be an 8 and 8 team this year but this year they have Peyton Manning in their division.
11) Philadelphia Eagles - The Eagles have a terrific all around team but the so called "Dream Team" was plagued by injuries last year and with Vick already getting shook up once in the preseason don't count on the Eagles being a Super Bowl contender.
10) Atlanta Falcons - The Falcons have a great shot at making the playoffs and even winning the NFC South but the question is can Matt Ryan get past the first round and unfortunately I have to say the B.C. Alum will not because he is a choke in the playoffs. Prove me wrong Matt I am rooting for you!
9) Chicago Bears - I have a feeling the Bears are going to be awesome this year because Jay Cutler finally has a solid offensive line and the Bears defense should be great this year if they can stay healthy.
8) Detroit Lions - The big question with Lions this year as it has been for the past couple seasons is can Matt Stafford stay healthy. The Lions have an improved defense and could be a very competitive team if Stafford can stay healthy. Another big concern for the Lions is Jahvid Best, he will most likely be out the first 6 games of the season so it will depend if the running game will be okay without him and it is certainly a big question mark.
7) Baltimore Ravens - The Ravens will be a playoff contender and have a solid season but their defense is another year older and they are still starting Joe Flacco. Ray Rice and the defense will be key for the Ravens.
6) San Francisco 49ers - The 49ers were the 2nd best team in the NFC last year and with their hard hitting incredible defense that could be the case this year. The edition of Randy Moss could also help out Alex Smith, it should be a very interesting season in 49er land.
5) Pittsburgh Steelers - The Steelers after this season will have serious contract issues as they did in this preseason but since they got their biggest receiving threat in Mike Wallace back, Big Ben and the Steelers should once again be a tough team to beat.
4) Green Bay Packers - The Packers had a terrific draft upgrading their defense and should be a very solid team all around, with Aaron Rodgers having the majority of his receiving core back look out for the Packers.
3) Houston Texans - Last year the Texans fell in the playoffs because of a season ending injury to Matt Schaub but with everyone back healthy the Texans should once again be one of the best all around teams in the NFL.
2) New England Patriots - The Patriots had a terrific draft and upgraded their defense significantly. They also added Brandon Lloyd to Brady's arsenal of receiving weapons so the Patriots should once again take the AFC East and make a deep post season run despite being the youngest Patriots team ever under Belichick.
1) New York Giants - Despite going 9 and 7 last season, the Giants won the Super Bowl, you must dethrone the champs to take the number one spot on my NFL Power Rankings.
Read More for Craig's Power Rankings
By: Tom Nappi
Well if you read my article, I was wrong about just about everything once again proving why the NFL is the best league on earth and the playoffs are the most fascinating.
Here is what I said in my last article that was completely False because I am willing to admit my faults:
I ranked Denver 12th in the playoff rankings last week and said this: "Tim Tebow has been revealed for what he truly is, an average Running Back at the Q.B. position, there is no way I can see the Broncos beating the Steelers in the 1st Round therefore they are ranked last."
Clearly that statement was False as Tim Tebow threw for 316 yards and had 2 touchdowns including a 80 yard game winning TD pass in the opening seconds of over time too Demaryius Thomas.
I ranked Houston 11th in the playoff rankings and said this: "The Texans have a good shot to upset the Bengals in the first round but after that, not to much of a chance at anything with T.J. Yates as their starting QB because Schaub is down, but look out next year."
I gave the Texans the benefit of the doubt against the Bengals but T.J. Yates is better than I thought and the Texans defense gives them a legitimate shot to beat the Ravens next Sunday if Flacco plays bad.
To Sum up from last week, if you want to see what else I said read the damn article it's 4 down from this one but I was half right about the Giants but I did say "They are too much of a shaky team to beat good opponents" This is kind of false, the Giants have a shot to beat the Packers next week, especially if Eli plays like he did against the Falcons and Jason Pierre-Paul is his usual self, I am picking Packers but upset alert is officially in affect on this one. The Bengals I was less than half right on but shame on me for crediting a team that is now 0 and 8 against opponents above .500, Bengals cannot beat good teams and will not be even close to a contender next year, this year was a fluke, they beat a bunch of tomato cans and made the playoffs. I think Andy Dalton will eventually be a good QB but the Bengals have a lot of show and tell to do next year in order to make me think differently.
Games This Week (My Picks are in Bold):
Sat 4:30pm New Orleans Saints @ S.F. 49ers
Sat 8:00pm Denver Broncos @ New England Patriots
Sun 1:00pm Houston Texans @ Baltimore Ravens
Sun 4:30pm New York Giants @ Green Bay Packers
Without further or do here is playoff week 2 Power Rankings of the Final 8, by the way do not take my advice into consideration while betting, there is a reason I do not bet anymore except on Super Bowl squares, I am damn good at those!!!
(#) - Last Week's ranking
8-(5) S.F. 49ers (13-3) - The 49ers have a shot to beat the Saints next week with there amazing defense, but with the way Drew Brees is playing and the Saints are playing overall, don't count on it, then again remember I am wrong a lot, but so is Peter King!!
7-(12) Denver Broncos (9-8) - The Broncos proved how wrong I could be, I know Mendenhall was out and Ben was not 100% but hey that's football and the Broncos won fair and square. Tim Tebow showed balls this game, pure brass balls as he threw 3-4 passes over 50 yards, 2 of them for touchdowns and showed he can do more than run and throw short slant routes. The dude can throw the long ball and with the Patriots past 2 years of one and done, Tim Tebow has a shot to beat them! I am picking Pats, but Tebow has a shot!
6-(11) Houston Texans (11-6) - The Texans proved that their defense is good enough to do it without Schaub. I also have a huge respect for T.J. Yates, the 3rd stringer looked pretty damn good against an average Bengals defense. If Flacco has a bad day Sunday and the Texans are able to produce a couple turnovers, do not count them out.
5-(8) New York Giants (10-7) - The Giants have the offense and the defense to upset the Packers and shock the world, they did it to the Patriots in 2007 and they have the skill set to upset the overall Super Bowl favorite this year as well. The Packers have been playing below average lately and with the way this season has gone, who knows what to expect in this matchup of 2 high powered offenses and 2 of the top 5 QB's this season. Yes I said it Eli is a top 5 QB, I know it sucks!
4-(4) Baltimore Ravens (12-4) - The Ravens have a shot to be upset by the Texans this week, I still pick Ravens to win, but Yates is looking good stepping in for Schaub and the Texans defense is outstanding. Big credit goes to Wade Phillips, expect him to be a head coach somewhere once again next season.
3-(2) New Orleans Saints (14-3) - The Saints are playing outstanding and completely trashed the Lions last week, the reason I move them below the Patriots is because I feel the 49ers have a better shot to beat the Saints than the Broncos do to beat the Patriots, it's that simple but I am picking Saints over 49ers this week.
2-(3) New England Patriots (13-3) - Patriots if you let me down against the Broncos and go one and done against this team, you are a disgrace. Losing to Giants, Ravens and Jets back to back to back in the playoffs is forgivable if you end Tebowmania, if you don't I am just about done with you.
1-(1) Green Bay Packers (15-1) - I had a hard time ranking the Packers number 1 this week with the upset bound Giants coming to town, but until someone beats Aaron Rodgers besides a fluky Kyle Orton and the Chiefs in a pointless game, they stay here and are still my Super Bowl favorites this year!
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It is time for Final 4 action. I was pretty pumped I went 3 and 1 in picks last week, I don't think anyone saw the 49ers beating the Saints however and if you say otherwise you are lying. Now that Brady and Eli are the best Qb's left in the playoffs, the Pats have a great shot at the Super Bowl title, but do they have the best shot? Read below to find out.
4) S.F. 49ers - I am not counting out the 49ers against the Giants this week especially considering the way they played against the Saints last week. Alex Smith looked really good, the best he has ever looked (fact not opinion), but I am convinced the Saints are the NFC version of the Patriots, great offense, shaky at best defense. The 49ers have a chance to beat the G-Men but Eli is arguably playing better than anybody right now and the Giants offense looks unstoppable.
3) Baltimore Ravens - The Ravens defense is good in fact one of the best but they are substantially older and the way the Patriots offense is playing is ridiculous and they look unstoppable. I do not think the Ravens matchup well against the 3 headed monster in Gronk, Hernandez and Welker. Ravens have a legit shot to win the game if they get a couple of turn overs and if we find out the miraculous way the Pats defense played last week against the Broncos is a fluke, but I expect Pats to head to Indy.
2) New England Patriots - I hate to do it but I cannot say the Patriots or anyone else for that matter is playing hotter than the Giants right now. I do expect a Pats-Giants rematch in the Super Bowl although I may not pick that way on the Sports Blast because I need to come back in picks but if the Patriots even do half of what they did defensively against Flacco next week, hello Indianapolis!
1) New York Giants - They crush the Falcons and then the G-Men roll over everyones Super Bowl favorite Green Bay in extraordinary fashion shutting down Rodgers and all his weapons. Eli looks to be playing better than he ever has in his career and has a legit shot to surpass his brother Peyton in Super Bowl titles this year.
Patriots - 27 Baltimore - 17
Giants - 24 49ers - 17
Un-biased Super Bowl prediction
New York Giants - 37 New England Patriots - 30
ITS THAT TIME OF YEAR! Down to 12 teams and we are ready for Wild Card Weekend Next week with a great slate of NFL games. BTW what a last week of the season, every game but 3 games meant something! With that being said the games this week our listed below along with the 12 teams ranked 12 to 1, 1 being the team with the best chance to bring home the Vince Lombardi Trophy!
Sat Jan 7th 4:30pm/et
Cincinnati Bengals @ Houston Texans
Sat Jan 7th 8:00pm/et
Detroit Lions @ New Orleans Saints
Sun Jan 8th 1:00pm/et
Atlanta Falcons @ New York Giants
Sun Jan 8th 4:00pm/et
Pittsburgh Steelers @ Denver Broncos
Byes: New England Patriots, Baltimore Ravens, S.F. 49ers, Green Bay Packers
POST SEASON POWER RANKINGS
12) Denver Broncos (8-8) - Tim Tebow has been revealed for what he truly is, an average Running Back at the Q.B. position, their is no way I can see the Broncos beating the Steelers in the 1st Round therefore they are ranked last.
11) Houston Texans (10-6) - The Texans have a good shot to upset the Bengals in the first round but after that, not to much of a chance at anything with T.J. Yates as their starting QB because Schaub is down, but look out next year.
10) Detroit Lions (10-6) - If the Saints do not make the Lions one and done this week and they pull what they did last year against the Seahawks, I am going to start calling Drew Brees the Lebron of the NFL, this should be an easy Saints win, Stafford and the gang will keep it close, but don't expect much.
9) Cincinnati Bengals (9-7) - The Bengals have an interesting scenario, they have a Matt Schaubless Texans squad in the first round then could end up with a defenseless Patriots, the Bengals could upset their way to the AFC Championship, but if they make it to New England, I am picking Pats! A great season by the most surprising team of the year in the rookie QB led Bengals.
8) New York Giants (9-7) - I may even pick the Giants to beat the Falcons in the first round, but the Giants are way too much of a shaky team against good opponents to rank them any higher than this.
7) Atlanta Falcons (10-6) - The Falcons have had a questionable year, they started terrible and really turned things arounds especially once Julio Jones got back, beating the Giants will be no easy task however as I think this is an even matchup and both these teams match up well against each other on both sides of the ball.
6) Pittsburgh Steelers (12-4) - No one knows how healthy Big Ben actually is and Rashard Mendenhall may have a torn ACL, this could cost the Steelers dearly, I expect them to get past Denver, but to beat New England again this year with those offensive injuries would really take a lot of luck or New England sleeping defensively.
5) S.F. 49ers (13-3) - The 49ers have arguably the best defense in the league at this current time, but with an unreliable Alex Smith and a very good but stoppable Frank Gore, if they meet a team like the Saints or Giants next round, it could be upset city in San Francisco. Also one other relevant point to make look at the teams that have won Super Bowls the past few years, Packers, Saints, Steelers, Colts, all have great QB's, Alex Smith is not in that category.
4) Baltimore Ravens (12-4) - The success of the Ravens will completely bank on what kind of Joe Flacco plays, will it be the kind that throws countless interceptions and miss fires 50% of his passes or will he be sharp and hit his targets, defensively they are fine, but offensively they have many questions with Flacco as their Q.B.
3) New England Patriots (13-3) - The Patriots have the best offense in the A.F.C. and could have an easy road to the Super Bowl with the 1 seed and home field locked up and the fact they may play the Bengals in the first round, but if the Patriots struggle defensively like they have all season and they end up with the Steelers next week, an upset is very possible.
2) New Orleans Saints (13-3) - In my opinion, the Saints are the only team besides the Patriots that could keep up scoring wise with the Packers, Drew Brees has played outstanding this year and I will not rule the Saints out of a matchup with Green Bay in the NFC championship pending they don't lose to someone ridiculous as they did in the playoffs last year to the 8 and 8 Seahawks.
1) Green Bay Packers (15-1) - Matt Flynn threw 6 touchdowns last week and the Green Bay Packer B Squad beat the Detroit Lions who were playing for a higher seed, I can't wait to see what the A Squad does in the playoffs, repeat more than likely in Cheesehead City!
There you have it folks, these will change next week, enjoy the NFL and read Craig's article below this one on what the Red Sox need to do as we are only 2 months or so away from Spring Training!
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Here are the Tom Nappi Week 15 NFL Power Rankings, (#) - Last Week
If the Team is not bold there is no shot in hell they will make the playoffs.
Power rankings are in order by teams that have best shot at the Super Bowl!
I will adjust this after Monday Night Football but notice the MNF matchup is pointless as it is between 2 awful teams!
Here is a pic of God's Favorite Tim Tebow who did it again in week 14, a last minute comeback against the Bears and the Broncos win 6th straight 13-10!
32-(32) Indianapolis Colts (0-13) - Awful, they continue to throw the season, shameful, awful, horrible.
31-(31) St. Louis Rams (2-11) - Why did Sam Bradford go from first to worst?
30-(25) Tampa Bay Bucs (4-9) - How the heck is it possible to give up 41 points to Jacksonville? The Bucs are terrible.
29-(26) Cleveland Browns (4-9) - Peyton Hillis one and done One great year and that could be it and the Browns are consistently awful.
28-(30) Minnesota Vikings (2-11) - They could have very well beat the Lions this week, if the refs saw the face mask on the last play of the game, they are looking better every week and I think Ponder will eventually be a good QB.
27-(18) Kansas City Chiefs (5-8) - Head Coach Todd Haley just got tanked after a beating by the Jets, the injury of Cassel wrecked the Chiefs already questionable season.
26-(23) Buffalo Bills (5-8) - Is it just me or are the Bills getting worse and worse every week? 37-10 beating by the Chargers this week.
25-(22) Miami Dolphins (4-9) - Dolphins took a tough loss this week to Philly but they have serious potential to upset the elite.
24-(28) Washington Redskins (4-9) - Most of the Redskins losses have been very competitive games, they have potential to upset playoff teams and you can never under prepare for the Redskins deadly pass rush.
23-(29) Jacksonville Jaguars (4-9) - They ran over the Bucs this week, so they have potential to end some seasons as bad as they have been. Maybe its the fact Jack Del Rio is gone!
22-(24) Carolina Panthers (4-9) - Don't every underestimate Cam Newton, he is by far rookie of the year, if Panthers ever get a defense to support him look out!
21-(27) Philadelphia Eagles (5-8) - Vick is back and so is some winning in Philly, they will not make the playoffs but they could upset playoff contenders. A nice 26-10 beating of the Dolphins this week.
20-(20) Seattle Seahawks (6-7) - MNF was a Seahawk Slaughter Fest 30-13 over the Rams.
19-(21) Arizona Cardinals (6-7) - They beat the 49ers this week 21-19. I love the wild wild NFC west, Cardinals could win out and grab a NFC wild card. Don't count on it though.
18-(19) S.D. Chargers (6-7) - I hate how the Chargers win in december and suck every other month, I think Tebow will hold them from the AFC West title this year however!
17-(17) Chicago Bears (7-6) - A major shot at the Wild Card in NFC took a major hit this week because of Marion Barber, who runs out of bounds with the lead and less than 2 minutes left honestly! Well the Denver Tim Tebow Divine Interventions got to the Bears this week.
16-(16) Oakland Raiders (7-6) - Probably the most undisciplined team in the NFL. Detroit, K.C. and Chargers left, with the way they have been playing, the Raiders are dead!
15-(15) Cincinnati Bengals (7-6) - Rams, Cardinals and Ravens to finish out the season, must win at least 2 of those games to stay in playoff contention after blowing a must win game against the Falcons this week.
14-(12) Tennessee Titans (7-6) - Still a shot at a Wild Card even though the division was clinched with the Jags and Colts coming up, Titans will have to win out the rest of the season.
13-(10) Detroit Lions (7-6) - Should have lost to the Vikings but a missed face mask call in the last play of the game, the Lions look undisciplined and the defense is playing not close to as good as the beginning of the season.
12-(11) Dallas Cowboys (7-6) - Blew an 11 point lead against the Giants on Sunday Night Football with 5:00+ left, the Giants are now right back in the race and own the tie-breaker against the Cowboys.
11-(10) New York Giants (7-6) - Giants saved their season by beating the Cowboys Sunday Night, but still will likely have to win out to grab a playoff spot. It has been a very inconsistent NFC East this year and the Giants are no exception.
10-(13) New York Jets (8-5) - Jets are in line at a AFC Wild Card spot as long as they win 2 of the next 3, as far as competing with elite teams such as the Ravens, Steelers and Patriots, it has yet to be seen if they are capable.
9-(9) Atlanta Falcons (8-5) Got the job done against Carolina now has Jacksonville, New Orleans and Tampa Bay coming up, should be in line for a NFC Wild Card spot and overall has a nice all around team with upset potential!
8-(5) S.F. 49ers (10-3) The proud winners of the NFC west, now I have to say the 49ers have an outstanding defense but there offense comes up short at times and I am not sure they have enough clutchability (made up my own word there) to go far into the playoffs.
7-(7) Denver Broncos (8-5) - Broncos have won 6 straight and if you watched the game this week against the Bears, the way the Broncos won was one of the rarest most flukey things I have ever seen and Tim Tebow I am now convinced has divine intervention on his side, this guy is nothing but a winner! He sucks at throwing and I cannot emphasize that enough but he has the power of the Lord!
6-(6) New England Patriots (10-3) - Another shaky win for the Patriots as they beat the Redskins 34-27, not only did they get torched by the awful Rex Grossman, but this week even their ground defense was awful, giving up 126 yards to Roy Helu. With this kind of defense, one and done, as I am still a huge believer in the fact defense wins championships! I CAN'T WAIT TO WATCH BRONCOS VS PATS THIS SUNDAY AT 4:15PM/ET!
5-(8) Houston Texans (10-3) - Schaub may be done, but the Texans are in the playoffs after clinching the South and even though T.J. Yates is there QB they got the job done the past 2 weeks against a tough Falcons and a tough Bengals team, Patriots take note this is how defense is played, only 29 points given up in the past 2 weeks by the Texans!
4- (4) Pittsburgh Steelers (10-3) - Beat up on the Browns and I hate to admit it but Big Ben is one tough S.O.B. coming back into the game after spraining his ankle on Thursday nights beating of the Browns.
3-(3) Baltimore Ravens (10-3) - Chargers, Browns and Bengals left, Chargers probably the toughest game left, but have a great shot to clinch the AFC North.
2-(2) New Orleans Saints (10-3) - Drew Brees is unstoppable. Vikings, Falcons, Carolina coming up, so the Saints are in great shape for the NFC South and a Bye Week. Prediction: Packers and Saints in NFC championship, Packers win 55-48.
1-(1) Green Bay Packers (13-0) - Once again showed why they are the best and Rodgers is on a level of his own!
READ MORE CHECK OUT CRAIG's POWER RANKINGS!!!!!! THEY ARE ALMOST AS GOOD AS MINE!
Here are the Week 12 from Tom Nappi Power Rankings, (#) - Last Week
If the Team is in Bold they are still mathematically in the playoff hunt, by the way you will notice only 4 teams out of it....WOW!
Power rankings are in order by teams that have best shot at the Super Bowl!
32-(32) Indianapolis Colts (0-10) - Peyton Manning may play this season.....but no point
31-(31) Minnesota Vikings (2-8) - Christian Ponder will be better as time goes on.
30-(25) St. Louis Rams (2-8) - Lloyd is a huge improvement, but still can't win.
29-(30) Carolina Panthers (2-8) - The Carolina Cam Newton's have a chance to beat you but probably won't if your team has any kind of offense.
28-(27) Jacksonville Jaguars (3-7) - Hanging on for dear life, most likely out. A pretty good season for Blaine Gabbert
27-(23) Arizona Cardinals (3-7) - Out of the division race, but an extremely slim wild card chance, a team with good pieces on offense but could never put it together.
26-(28) Washington Redskins (3-7) - Hanging on for dear life in the East, but playing awful. Rex Grossman got benched last week, Skins never seize to fall apart.
25-(26) Miami Dolphins (3-7) - No way in hell they win the division, but if they run the table they could open up a wild card spot. Dolphins have won 3 straight and Reggie Bush looks great.
24-(24) Seattle Seahawks (4-6) - Have won 2 straight, 49ers own the west, but if they somehow manage to run the table they could slide in to the playoffs, they should have a win this week against the Redskins.
23-(19) Tampa Bay Buccaneers (4-6) - 4 Losses in a row in the south with the Falcons and Saints, must run table for any hope what so ever...don't count on it.
22-(29) Cleveland Browns (4-6) - Potential for some upsets, no shot at playoffs but mathematically still in.
21-(21) Kansas City Chiefs (4-6) - In the AFC west but Matt Cassel is done for the season and so are the Chiefs.
20-(20) Buffalo Bills (5-5) - Very much alive but went from good to garbage in a span of 3 weeks.
19-(15) Cincinnati Bengals (6-4) - Andy Dalton is going to be fantastic in the future, but they still meet the Steelers and Ravens and there schedule is brutal....Get Em' Next Year!
18-(18) S.D. Chargers (4-6) - Very much alive in the new NFC West a.k.a. the AFC West, but 5 losses in a row, please don't tell me they could actually slip in after that!
17-(16) Tennessee Titans (5-5) - With Matt Schaub down, the Titans have a real chance to win the A.F.C. South with a reasonable schedule coming up and Matt Hasselbeck playing well.
16-(22) Philadelphia Eagles (4-6) - Vince Young and good defensive play may have resurrected the Eagles, the win over the Giants was HUGE, but the G-men played awful!
15-(14) Houston Texans (7-3) - Would be ranked a lot higher but Matt Schaub is gone and Matt Leinart is not really a great QB to rely on....Call Favre up!
14-(10) New York Jets (5-5) - Obviously a lot of talent, but they got T-Bowed last week and upcoming schedule is not too easy.
13-(17) Denver Broncos (5-5) - A real shot to win the West, only a game out and Tebow scares me, he can't throw too good but somehow wins games and proved he can beat good teams, plus the defense has played superb!
12-(13) Oakland Raiders (6-4) - Looking very good lately and may be a candidate for a playoff upset special if they manage to win the West over the Denver Tebows.
11-(6) Chicago Bears (7-3) - No Jay Cutler for the rest of the season really hurts, but the Bears no how to win using defense and a QB that can manage the game, QB Caleb Hanie does have big game experience and showed last year in the NFC championship he could put up some points, The Bears are also rumored to have brought back the recently waived QB Kyle Orton.
10-(11) Atlanta Falcons (6-4) - Have lost both games to the Saints this year, but always a threat with their strong running game and defense.
9-(8) New York Giants (6-4) - The Cowboys are getting red hot and the Giants are getting ice cold with 2 straight losses.
8-(12) Detroit Lions (7-3) - Tough Schedule coming up as they meet the Packers twice, thanksgiving will determine everything!!!
7-(9) Dallas Cowboys (6-4) - Tony Romo starting to look sharp, 3 straight wins heading into a thanksgiving battle with the Dolphins, Cowboys looking to be a huge threat after an awful start.
6-(7) Baltimore Ravens (7-3) - They are very unpredictable, one week they lost to the Seahawks, then the next week they beat the Steelers....I just don't know anymore.
5-(3) New Orleans Saints (7-3) - Looking very good but defense gives up a lot of points, but with Brees the Saints are always in Super Bowl contention.
4-(5) New England Patriots (7-3) - They have a pee-wee football schedule coming up that can lead them right to a bye week in the playoffs. Be careful or you might get GRONKED!
3-(2) Pittsburgh Steelers (7-3) - The only consistent team in the AFC, but certainly NOT a dominate force that can't be beaten, if they meet the Ravens in the playoffs look out!
2-(4) S.F. 49ers (9-1) - 8 Wins in a row, I have to rank them here, a monster of a game thanksgiving night against the Ravens that could chance everything but it is guaranteed the 49ers will win the NFC West unless they get hit by an asteroid.
1-(1) Green Bay Packers - Will they ever be beaten!!!! Close call with the Bucs last week but the key word is close, one of the most dominate teams I have ever seen! Between this season, last season and 2010 post season, the Packers have won 16 games in a row.
STAY TUNED TO THESE RANKINGS AFTER THANKSGIVING FOOTBALL AS THEY WILL CHANGE....PERHAPS DRASTICALLY
NFL Week 6
Bills - 24 Giants - 27
Colts - 17 Bengals - 27
Jaguars - 13 Steelers - 17
Eagles - 20 Redskins - 13
49ers - 25 Lions - 19
Rams - 3 Packers - 24
Panthers - 17 Falcons - 31
Browns - 17 Raiders - 24
Texans - 14 Ravens - 29
Saints - 20 Bucs - 26
Dallas - 16 Pats - 20
Vikings - 10 Bears - 39
Dolphins - 6 Jets - 24
Take a look at these final scores and read more for Craig's Power Rankings and all the Latest News about your favorite NFL Team!
After the San Francisco 49ers dealt the Detroit Lions their first loss on the season, 49ers Coach Jim Harbaugh trotted happily over to Lions Coach Jim Schwartz for the traditional coaches’ handshake and gave him a strong grip and spirited pat on the back. Then we see Schwartz turn around with fire in his eyes and chase after Harbaugh, bumping Harbaugh’s shoulder with his. As a growing number of players from both sides rally around their coaches, we see Schwartz continue to follow Harbaugh.
Schwartz refuses any culpability in the incident, saying:
“I went to congratulate Coach Harbaugh and got shoved out of the way,” Schwartz said. “And then I didn’t expect an obscenity at that point, so it was a surprise to me at the end of the game.”
I’ve seen the video several times, and don’t clearly see an obscenity being mouthed by Harbaugh. Regardless, it seems that Schwartz was already upset by his team’s first loss of the season and Harbaugh’s overzealous contact threw him into a fit. But that is no excuse for Schwartz’s behavior. This is a passionate game, and Schwartz should know that as his overreactions on the sideline this season have been plentiful – cursing at players and referees alike. Hypocritical much? Perhaps.
What should be mentioned is Harbaugh’s statement after the game. He said, simply:
“That is totally on me,” Harbaugh said. “I shook his hand too hard. I really went in, and it was a strong, kind of a slap-grab handshake.”
A classy statement to be sure, but no expletive or overzealous pat could warrant Schwartz’s inappropriate reaction. Being an NFL coach, you need to behave with a certain measure of integrity and class, which may in some instances require ignoring barbs and insults. Because, as the leader of your team, you set a very powerful example. What does it say to the Lions that their Coach could not maintain his composure in this situation?
We may have more information tomorrow from the league about whether an investigation will occur or if the coaches will face any fines.
Carson Palmer traded to the Raiders for two first round draft picks
Brandon Lloyd to the Rams for 5th or 6th round draft pick
Jon Lester say's the Red Sox only drank beer and ate fried chicken in the clubhouse once a month
Jets crush the Dolphins on Monday Night Football 24-6
Jim Scwarts, Jim Hardbaugh not fined after confrontation