Credit: Kirby Lee/Image of Sport-US PRESSWIRE

NFL Power Rankings


While no one is in love with the BCS they do at least give it a few weeks before they throw rankings out there. The NFL season is a quarter way thru, 5/16ths for most,  and there finally is enough knowledge to compare all 32 teams.

Teams such as Houston, San Francisco, and Baltimore are right where you expected them to be while everyone in the NFC West not located in the bay is a lot better than we expected. All 4 teams are above .500 and are positive net points for the year. Looks like that article posted here a few weeks ago claiming that the NFC West was the toughest division in football wasn’t so far-fetched.

 

  1. Houston Texans- Houston has no problems so far this season. Their division is weak, their defense is good no matter what you run at them, and they can run and pass the ball on offense. They were the best team last year before the injury bug bit.
  2. Atlanta Falcons- Their defense is stellar and the offense has too many weapons to be shut out.  Their is no competition in their division so they could lock this thing up early.

  3. San Francisco 49ers- 79-3 point differential following the loss to the Vikings. Impressive. The defense is just as good as last year and the offense has gotten better. Scary.  Alex Smith has grown in this offense and is now a top 10 quarterback. They are hitting their stride at a perfect time for their revenge matchup versus the Giants.
  4. Baltimore Ravens- The focus this team has put into making the offense better is starting to pay off.  Flacco could strike gold in his new contract if he keeps up the great play.
  5. New England Patriots- That quick to the line running game was very affective and this team as a whole is coming together nicely. If the defense can be average then they should be the favorite to win it all.
  6. Chicago Bears- My dark-horse team is a quiet 4-1. They have the potential to be the best team in the NFC. The biggest issue is the offensive line because once they collapse, Cutler makes bad decisions.
  7. Arizona Cardinals- I give them credit for the hot start, but we’ve seen teams come out of the gate strong then falter down the stretch. Think Buffalo from last year.
  8. Minnesota Vikings- Behind only the Cardinals this is the surprise team this year. QB Christian Ponder really grew in the off-season and if other teams in the NFC keep struggling they could sneak into the playoffs.
  9. Green Bay Packers- Don’t push the panic button on this team yet. They aren’t as good as a year ago, but that doesn’t make them bad. Go through their 3 losses and you’ll find a tough 49er team, a blown call, and a blown lead on the road against an inspired team. Something tells me this team won’t allow those excuses to turn into reasons for missing the postseason.
  10. Philadelphia Eagles- I don’t understand how so many people had this team picked as their NFC representative. They make the top 10 for now…
  11. New York Giants- Two division losses this early into the season could spell doom to their playoff future. As it looks only one team will make it out of the NFC East.
  12. San Diego Chargers- If the replacement refs were still officiating, the nation would be in an uproar about the calls versus the Saints. They should be sitting at 4-1 with their only loss to Atlanta. Instead they are 3-2 and only 1 up in the division.
  13. Cincinnati Bengals- Losing at home to Miami is inexcusable by a team that has to win the games they are supposed to.  They are young, they will improve.
  14. Denver Broncos- They are 2-3 and are heading to San Diego for Monday Night Football. They have been very competitive for a team with a new quarterback facing a difficult schedule. They will have it easier late in the season and a win this weekend puts them in first place.
  15. Pittsburgh Steelers- They are a middle of the pack team now, but as long as they have Big Ben they have a chance in every game. The defense is getting healthy, but that doesn’t make them any younger.
  16. Seattle Seahawks- Wilson is on the hot seat early, I can’t say that is surprising. The defense is vastly improved compared to previous years and that makes them dangerous.
  17. St Louis Rams- 3-2 is a promising start to the Fisher regime. Just think of what they’ll do with all the picks they got from Washington for RGIII.
  18. Dallas Cowboys- It’s time for this team to blow it up. It’s one thing if you can consistently make the playoffs, but when you average 8-8 for over a decade things need to change. Garrett is not a good enough game planner and his offense is struggling. Romo is a nice option at quarterback, but the line is terrible, the run game is not existent, and the receivers don’t know what routes to run.  Their defense is stellar though.
  19. Washington Redskins- They are at least watchable now, which is a positive. The negative is a small framed quarterback mobile quarterback already dealing with concussions this early in his career is doomed to stay on the injury report or injured reserve.
  20. Detroit Lions- I don’t think many were expecting the same production as last year from this team, but being 1-3 this early is somewhat surprising. Madden curse?
  21. Indianapolis Colts- What a performance from them playing for their head coach. Luck is playing great for a rookie on a bad team. Reggie Wayne is having a record breaking type season that is going unnoticed on the national scale.
  22. Carolina Panthers- They head into the bye week with a lot of question marks. This was the team that was supposed to make the playoffs with the Saints issues and now they have to worry about their quarterback turning into a hot head. Is Cam Newton the next Vince Young?
  23. New Orleans Saints- This team has hope… come next season. Sean Payton is really proving the value a head coach has on a team. Congratulations to Brees breaking Unitas’ record, even though Unitas streak was more impressive for the era he played in. Brees can also thank a garbage touchdown in the waning seconds in a loss to the Rams last year to keep the streak alive.
  24. New York Jets- Their next 2 games are against the Colts then Patriots. If they lose both expect Tebow to takeover. The loss of Revis makes them look a lot worse on paper than they probably are.
  25. Miami Dolphins- They have made great gains in the last few weeks. While they are ready to compete this year, there is promise for the future and that is enough to inspire Dolphin fans.
  26. Buffalo Bills- They spent all that money in free agency and still won’t have anything to show for it. Add in that terrible contract they gave Fitzpatrick midway thru last year and you end up with cap issues for a bad team.
  27. Oakland Raiders- This is why you don’t trade high draft picks for veterans past their prime. The best part is the fan base can’t blame Al Davis for the move to get Carson Palmer.
  28. Tennessee Titans- They are 1-4 and are a league worst -93 in net points. It’s one thing to be bad in one area, but they need help everywhere.
  29. Jacksonville Jaguars- Just wait a few years and they will relocate to LA. The sooner the better because noone in Florida cares about this team.
  30. Tampa Bay Buccaneers- If you want to watch two teams fight for draft position in week 6 tune in to them hosting the Chiefs. If you are looking for something more entertaining, go mow the lawn.
  31. Kansas City Chiefs- This was a team that had the players in place to make a push for the division. It turns out that they aren’t anywhere close.  They are the one team definitely going quarterback early in the draft.
  32. Cleveland Browns- The only thing worse than starting 0-5 with a rookie quarterback is starting 0-5 with a 28 year old rookie quarterback. It was a waste of a 1st rounder for a team that is light years away in its division.

Tags: 49ers 2012 San Francisco 49ers