NFL Power Rankings: Week One

Kevin DeBenedetto@KDebo9Correspondent ISeptember 16, 2009

PHILADELPHIA - SEPTEMBER 21: Ben Roethlisberger #7 of the Pittsburgh Steelers climbs off the turf as he watches the play against the Philadelphia Eagles during the second half on September 21, 2008 at Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. The Eagles won 15-6.(Photo by Chris Gardner/Getty Images)

Week one is done.  The season is finally underway.  Tons of shockers, upsets, and great games all around.  With week one ending, power rankings start to form.

Before you read my rankings, I would like to note that I do NOT make one large list.  I split them, into the AFC and NFC.  Why, you ask?

It is a better way of looking at teams and measuring.  Who cares if the Ravens are better then the Vikings, or where the Rams match up against the Bengals.  As of now, you want to win your division and have the best record in your conference.

I will be doing these rankings every week with the same format.  As the season goes on, they will be more in-depth reasons why a team is ranked where they are.  As for now, it is hard to judge.  I am still basing some rankings based on final prediction, but trying to use the games at hand.


1) Steelers (1-0)

The champs are still atop the AFC, even with the loss of Polamalu.  They will need to lose to be dethroned from this spot. Next game: @ Chicago

2) Patriots (1-0)

They beat the Bills, needing a miraculous (and dumb) kick return to be fumbled. Reports are that Jerod Mayo are out 6-8 weeks, which will make that defense even weaker.  Next game: @ NYJ

3) Colts (1-0)

Peyton Manning to Marvin Harrison?  Not anymore, with Reggie Wayne stepping in and doing his thing.  The defense will get better as the year goes on.  Next game: @ MIA

4) Chargers (1-0)

Needed late game heroics by Darren Sproles to beat the Raiders.  Not impressive, but will definitely smooth over and be a good team.  Next game: vs BAL

5) Ravens (1-0)   

Flacco has emerged as a great young quarterback.  That defense is still a strong unit. Expect them to make a late run into January.  Next game: @ SD

6) Titans (0-1)

Played a tough game against the Steelers.  They will rebound, and keep playing hard-nosed defense. Next game: vs HOU

7) Jets (1-0)

Surprise, surprise.  Sanchez impressed. Ryan backed up his words.  This team will be competitive in every game.  Next game: vs NE

8) Texans (0-1)

Andre Johnson?  Steve Slaton?  Shut down by the Jets. They will rebound throughout the season, but they better hope the defense can step up.  Next game: @ TEN

9) Jaguars (0-1)

A tough game played against the Colts puts them here.  The defense and offensive line improved from last year, and Garrard will get back to his ball-control offense.  Next game: vs ARI

10) Dolphins (0-1)

Offense didn't do much, amassing four turnovers.  The defense played well for how long it was on the field.  They will rebound, but not next week.  Next game: vs IND

11) Bills (0-1)

What a terrible way to lose the home opener, on Monday Night, against the Patriots.  They played a tough game, but ultimately end up here.  Next game: vs TB

12) Raiders (0-1)

The Raiders have a defense? Maybe the addition of Richard Seymour made a difference.  The running game was strong, and Russell made some good throws in the pocket. Next game: @ KC

13) Browns (0-1)

Mangini tried to be secretive, but the silence was broken.  Maybe he should worry about stopping Adrian Peterson before worrying about surprising the Vikings with the starting QB.

14) Chiefs (0-1)

A Cassell-less team hung in late against the Ravens, but don't be fooled.  Their defense wasn't much, and the offense benefited from field position.  Next game: @ DEN

15) Broncos (1-0)

It took a miraculous play to beat a Cincinnati team.  You scored six points with no touchdowns before the last play.  Next game: vs CLE

16) Bengals (0-1)

You scored six points on a Denver Broncos team that is nothing to brag about, with a bad defense. Next game: @ GB

Important AFC games for week two: NE @ NYJ, BAL @ SD,


1) Philadelphia (1-0)

The Eagles ripped through the Panthers this week and shut down their great rushing game. The injury to Mcnabb hurts, but he should only be sidelined for a week or two. Next game: vs NO

2) Giants (1-0)

Welcome back, Osi!  Great defensive game this week, and it looks like the defense is back.  They will keep the Giants in all their games this year.  Next game: @ DAL

3) Minnesota (1-0)

Brett Favre, you will succeed if you do one thing: keep handing the ball to Peterson.  He is a wrecking machine and will win games for the Vikings. Next game: @ DET

4) Atlanta (1-0)

Matt Ryan, meet Tony Gonzalez.  As the best tight end in the game, he will revolutionize your game.  This duo will make a lot of noise this year.   The defense needs to stay sharp if they want to go far.  Next game: vs CAR

5) Green Bay (1-0)

The defensive switch to the 3-4 was confusing to some, but it looks alright.  Cutler threw four interceptions, and they shut down Matt Forte.  Look at them to only improve.  Next game: vs CIN

6) Dallas (1-0)

No TO?  No problem for Tony Romo.  Roy Williams looks comfortable in the number one wide receiver spot, and Miles Austin and Patrick Crayton can fill in fine.  Marion Barber will improve his running throughout the year, which will make them a terrifying offense. Next game: vs NYG

7) New Orleans (1-0)

Six touchdowns seems to be normal for Drew Brees nowadays.  The defense and special teams needs to improve drastically though, or else this season hangs in the hands of Brees.  Next game: @ PHI

8) Seattle (1-0)

A great way to bounce back this year, shutting out the Rams.  If they stay injury free, I see the Seahawks winning the West.  Next game: @ SF

9) Chicago (0-1)

Four picks for Cutler's debut didn't look good.  Now the news of Urlacher being out for the season doesn't look good.  Could be a tough year for the Bears, but I see them rebounding.  Next game: vs PIT

10) Washington (0-1)

Jim Zorn should play out of the shotgun for most of the game.  Stats for Jason Campbell: He was 14-for-17 for 155 yards out of the shotgun, but only 5-for-9 for 56 yards with two sacks and a pick when he lined up under center.  Next game: vs STL

11) Arizona (0-1)

Didn't they have this all-out aerial attack last year?  Seems like it went missing, along with the spirit of the Cardinals.  Next game: @ JAC

12) San Francisco (1-0)

Hard played game for Mike Singletary and the 49ers.  Patrick Willis once again shows why he is a top level linebacker in the league.  They could surprise some people this year.  Next game: vs SEA

13) Carolina (0-1)

John Fox, your career is in the hands of Jake Delhomme.  Word of advice: either he gets better, or Matt Moore starts.  Where was Slash 'N Dash this game?  Next game: @ ATL

14) Tampa Bay (0-1)

They have a great running game with Cadillac and Derrick Ward.  But the defense blew some plays, and Mike Nugent looks no better then when he was a Jet.  Next game: @ BUF

15) Detroit (0-1)

18 losses in a row, but they are not the worst team in the league.  Kevin Smith shows why he is an underrated back in the league, and Stafford had plenty of growing pains.  It could be a while until their first win. Next game: vs MIN

16) St. Louis (0-1)

The greatest show on turf?  Not so much anymore.  The only thing worse then their offense was their defense.  Next game: @ WAS

Important NFC games for week two: NO @ PHI, NYG @ DAL


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