Week 7 Power Rankings: Familiar Face Back at No. 1

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Week 7 Power Rankings: Familiar Face Back at No. 1
Gregory Shamus/Getty Images
In his 2010 debut, Big Ben threw for 3 TDs.

Week 6 had close games all around, with eight games being decided by four points or less. 

The 49ers got their first win and the Vikings may have salvaged their season with a must needed win over the Cowboys. 

Perhaps the biggest storyline from the week were all the nasty hits defenders were giving out, causing the NFL to look into the possibility of suspending players for helmet-to-helmet hits. 

Brandon Meriweather of the Patriots, James Harrison of the Steelers and Dunta Robinson of the Falcons were all given steep fines for their vicious tackles. 

Here are the latest rankings heading into Week 7, which includes two primetime games of two of the best rivalries in football, as the Packers and Vikings face off on Sunday night, while the Cowboys and Giants conclude the week on Monday Night.

Teams’ previous rankings in ( ).

 

1. Pittsburgh Steelers (3): Despite facing a below average Browns team, Big Ben looked solid in his return from suspension and led the Steelers to their fourth win of the season.

2. New York Jets (4): A nice comeback win for the Jets to extend their five game winning streak as they head into their bye. The Jets need Darrelle Revis to get 100 percent healthy during their bye, as they have a rough schedule in the second half of their season.

3. Baltimore Ravens (1): Another tough loss to swallow against the Patriots. The Ravens played well and just couldn’t hold on to a 10 point lead. The defense is starting to show its age.

4. Indianapolis Colts (6): The Colts took away both positive and negatives from their three point win against the ‘Skins. The positive was Joseph Addai finally got on track, rushing for over 100 yards. The negative was the Colts fumbled four times, losing three of them.

5. New England Patriots (8): The Deion Branch acquisition paying dividends faster than even the Patriots could have imagined.

6. New York Giants (7): They avoided a letdown against the Lions and now must go on the road to face a very angry Dallas team.

7. Philadelphia Eagles (10): Philly improved to 4-2 with an impressive win against the Falcons. DeSean Jackson took a nasty hit and looks to be out this week for sure and may miss more than that.

8. Atlanta Falcons (2): The defense continues to be the weak spot for Atlanta. Michael Turner hasn’t been as affective as he usually is either.

9. Chicago Bears (5): Chicago missed a great chance to take a commanding division lead.  Tough test in Week 7 as they face the Redskins.

10. New Orleans Saints (12): Now that’s the Saints were more accustomed to seeing.  Let’s see if they can build off of that win or if their inconsistency continues to plague them.

11. Washington Redskins (9): Tough loss on Sunday Night Football to the Colts. Washington sits at 3-3, but they’ve shown they are a different team this year and can play with anybody.

12. Houston Texans (14): It’s amazing what a difference maker Andre Johnson is. A huge fourth quarter for the Texans kept them tied for the division lead.

13. Tennessee Titans (15): Tennessee throttled the Jags on Monday Night Football, but the injury to Vince Young could loom large.

14. Kansas City Chiefs (11): Two straight tough losses to quality opponents leaves the Chiefs at 3-2. However, Kansas City has a favorable schedule the entire rest of the season.  Seeing them finish at 10-6 or better would not surprise me in the least.

15. Miami Dolphins (17): Squeaking out a win against a nicked-up Packers team was huge for the Dolphins as they face a brutal schedule from here on out, especially in the next month. 

16. Green Bay Packers (13): All three losses on last second field goals, including the last two in overtime. They officially lose Jermichael Finley for the season, but if the defense can get healthy, they can still hang with anyone.  The offensive line problems from last year have begun to return and losing Aaron Rodgers is the last thing Green Bay can afford.

17. Jacksonville Jaguars (16): Jacksonville turned in a Monday Night Football performance to forget. As if Maurice Jones-Drew didn’t already shoulder enough of the load, losing David Garrard just makes things worse.

18. Minnesota Vikings (20): The Vikings salvaged their season against Dallas but must continue their winning ways this week against the Packers. Expect Jared Allen and Brett Favre to play well on Sunday Night.

19. Arizona Cardinals (19): It hasn’t been pretty, but the Cardinals sit at 3-2 after six weeks and hope rookie QB Max Hall can help fans begin to forget about Kurt Warner.

20. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (18): Ugly loss against the Saints, but at 3-2 they’ve already exceeded some people’s expectations for the season.

21. Seattle Seahawks (26): Seattle played well against the Bears and proved once again they will contend in the NFC West. 

22. Cincinnati Bengals (22): The Bengals are coming off a bye and hopefully they have figured out some things on offense or they simply aren’t going to be able to keep pace with the Ravens and Steelers.

23. St. Louis Rams (25): I thought the Rams would be better than last year, but I still didn’t see them winning more than three or four games. They are playing extremely well and have an outside chance at winning the division with rookie QB Sam Bradford at the helm.

24. San Diego Chargers (21): Who would have thought that the Chiefs, Rams, Seahawks and Bucs would have more wins after six weeks than the Chargers? Probably nobody. San Diego is notorious for slow starts, but it looks as if this year might have a different result. 

25. San Francisco 49ers (30): San Fran finally got into the win column in week six, even if it was against the Raiders. Expect more of the same this week against the Panthers.

26. Denver Broncos (23): The Broncos gave the Jets everything they could handle but came up just a little short. Back-up QB Tim Tebow recorded his first career touchdown but there is no indication he will be the starter anytime soon.

27. Oakland Raiders (24): I thought the Raiders cut JaMarcus Russell? You would never know it by this week’s stat line: 8-21 for 83 yards, no touchdowns and two interceptions. 

28. Dallas Cowboys (27): Wade Phillips said the Cowboys will be abiding by college rules when it comes to celebrations. Perhaps a better idea would be to join a conference and play on Saturdays. At least then they might win some games.

29. Detroit Lions (28): The Lions, despite their record, are clearly improving. When you can hang around with the New York Giants with your third string quarterback, you’re getting somewhere. Imagine where they could be with a healthy Matthew Stafford all season.

30. Cleveland Browns (29): Can you expect anything more from a quarterback in his first career start against a dominating defense than what Colt McCoy gave the Browns?  Probably not. Despite the 18 point defeat and two interceptions, McCoy played better than anyone thought.

31. Carolina Panthers (31): The Panthers are going back to Matt Moore at quarterback this week, but in all honesty, what’s the point? They are going nowhere this year, or anytime soon.

32. Buffalo Bills (32): For the first time all year, the Bills didn’t lose this week, and that in itself is quite an accomplishment, even if they were on a bye. This team stinks and there’s no way around it.

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