NFL Season Analysis after Week Three

Mike CraigCorrespondent ISeptember 24, 2008

The Miami Dolphins got their first win of the season by beating the New England Patriots. How many touchdowns did Ronnie Brown have? Oh yeah, five. Welcome to the NFL, Matt Cassel.

Yes, the Green Bay Packers did lose to the Dallas Cowboys, but when it comes to the playoffs, the Packers are still the favorites. The Cowboys may have defied history once this season, but they won't do it again. The Cowboys' record in Lambeau now stands at 1-5.

Last week I predicted the Pittsburgh Steelers to win the Super Bowl. Ummm, ha! Even I make some pretty bad predictions. I mean my record for week three was 7-9. If this team cannot get its offensive line to protect Ben, how the hell do they expect to do anything?! If they don't watch it, the Ravens are going to win the division.

How 'bout them Giants? Oh yeah, the defending Super Bowl champs are 3-0. But didn't they go into overtime against the Bengals. What?! Whoa! This is what I was talking about when I said they haven't impressed me yet. And seeing that actually depressed me. It's a shame. If they played the Rams this week they might have actually lost with that performance. Come on, Champs!

The Jets are starting to look like a bust with Brett Favre at the helm. They might want to get him some more practice with the system. And did he look hurt in that Chargers game or is that just me? Come on Brett, don't make the Jets think they wasted their money on you, because as of right now, they did.

Undefeated Teams (Alphabetical Order)

Baltimore Ravens (2-0) - AFC
Buffalo Bills (3-0) - AFC
Dallas Cowboys (3-0) - NFC
Denver Broncos (3-0) - AFC
New York Giants (3-0) - NFC
Tennessee Titans (3-0) - AFC

Playoff Bound (Undefeated Teams)


Mike Craig's Power Rankings (1-16)

1. Dallas Cowboys (3-0) (LW: 1)

The Dallas Cowboys proved that they are the best team in NFC Sunday night when they beat the Green Bay Packers 27-16. Of course, they do still have that pesky problem of not having won a single playoff game since their Super Bowl victory over the Pittsburgh Steelers in the '95 season. Is this finally the year they make it back to the Super Bowl?

2. Denver Broncos (3-0) (LW: 8)

So now the Denver Broncos are 3-0. Yes they should in fact be 2-1 right now; however there isn't anything anybody can do about that. However, the Broncos are showing that they are the real deal. Look at their offense. Okay, so their defense may have let up the most points out of any team, but if they are still finding ways to win, it's hard to argue how good they are. Will Denver let up a lot of points against the Chiefs?

3. Tennessee Titans (3-0) (LW: 11)

Nobody expected the Titans to be undefeated. Especially when Vince Young is still sitting on the bench. He is injured, and they are doing better without him. The moment they put him back in, this team is going to start falling down the ladder. Until then, they belong at number three. Will they be able to have as much success now when Young comes back?

4. Buffalo Bills (3-0) (LW: 6)

Another team that nobody expected to be undefeated. The best part is that they should be 4-0 after week four, when they go and play the St. Louis Rams. Will they be the AFC East Champions?

5. Philadelphia Eagles (2-1) (LW: 5)

They took advantage of a weak Pittsburgh offensive line and destroyed Ben and the Steelers. Donovan McNabb has thrown more touchdowns than any other quarterback in Eagles history. Is the NFC East really up for grabs?

6. Green Bay Packers (2-1) (LW: 2)

Their Sunday Night loss to Dallas in Lambeau showed people that Aaron Rodgers and this team still need work. They won't have to play Dallas again unless it's in the playoffs, where this team still could end up. The real question is will this defense be fine without Al Harris?

7. New York Giants (3-0) (LW: 4)

I have been saying it for the past couple of weeks now and I was finally shown why I am right. The Bengals forced the Giants into overtime, and that showed me that this is NOT the same team that I saw beat the Patriots in Super Bowl XLII.

Yes, they are undefeated, however it won't be too long until that changes. They have a bye week, and then they play Seattle. Their first real challenge won't come until week eight when they play the Pittsburgh Steelers. Can this team make the Giants repeat?

8. Washington Redskins (2-1) (LW: 15)

This team looks like it has kicked it up a notch since their loss to the Giants in week one. However, they have another challenge this week when they face the Dallas Cowboys. Green Bay couldn't stop them; can Jim Zorn and Jason Campbell be the deciding factor?

9. Pittsburgh Steelers (2-1) (LW: 3)

This was a team I saw going to the Super Bowl. That was until I saw their offensive line give up eight sacks. Ben Roethlisberger isn't made of metal, you know. If they fix their line problem, this team is still capable of being dominant. Until then, expect to see this team start going down the ladder as well. If the Eagles could sack them that badly, how will the Ravens fair?

10. Arizona Cardinals (2-1) (LW: 7)

So these angry birds fell to 2-1 Sunday when the Washington Redskins beat them. It was a pretty good game and the Cardinals didn't look too bad. Kurt Warner couldn't seem to find his rhythm against the Redskins. The running game had over 100 rushing yards. This is still a team to watch out for. Will they win the NFC West?

11. Baltimore Ravens (2-0) (LW: Not Ranked)

They may have only had two games, and they were against the Bengals and Browns, however Baltimore had an easier time with the Browns than the Steelers did. Will this Baltimore defense do better than the Eagles' defense did against the Steelers?

12. San Diego Chargers (1-2) (LW: 14)

Yes, the Chargers moved up two spots on my rankings. Should they have moved further up? No. Maybe they should have only moved up one spot. That is okay though. The way they played against the Jets showed why they are still a dominant team in the AFC.

However, if they allowed the Jets to almost come back on them the way they did, how will they fair for the rest of the season?

13. Minnesota Vikings (1-2) (LW: 16)

This team moved up three and with good reason. They beat a team that was undefeated. The Carolina Panthers were looking like a good team before their game against the Vikings. Yet, what happened? The Vikings beat them. Perhaps the Vikings might have a shot now that Tarvaris Jackson is out of the picture.

14. Indianapolis Colts (1-2) (LW: 13)

They barely beat the Vikings in week two. Then they lose to the winless Jaguars, who seem to be doing nothing but sucking up the field. Are Peyton Manning and the Colts on a fall from the elite of the AFC?

15. New England Patriots (2-1) (LW: 10)

This is a team that lost to the Miami Dolphins. The Dolphins are not a good team. I don't understand how you can beat the Jets, who beat the Dolphins, and then let the Dolphins walk all over you like that.

Don't expect this team in the playoffs. Next week they won't even be on here unless everybody else ahead of them does bad. After all, they have a bye week to think some things through. This team's first hard game comes against the Chargers. However, they were supposed to win against the Dolphins, so how will they fair against the 49ers?

16. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (2-1) (LW: Not Ranked)

The Bucs are starting to look good. If they work on their defense, then they will be a hard team to beat. They have a big challenge in their next game as Green Bay travels to Tampa Bay in week four. Can Brian Griese and the Bucs beat the second best team in the NFC?

Disgrace of the NFL after Week Three

St. Louis Rams & Detroit Lions

The Lions might actually be worse than the Rams now. At least the Rams have potential to be good.

Division Predictions after Week 3

AFC EAST: Buffalo Bills

Buffalo Bills (3-0)
New England Patriots (2-1)
New York Jets (1-2)
Miami Dolphins (1-2)

AFC NORTH: Pittsburgh Steelers

Baltimore Ravens (2-0)
Pittsburgh Steelers (2-1)
Cincinnati Bengals (0-3)
Cleveland Browns (0-3)

AFC SOUTH: Tennessee Titans

Tennessee Titans (3-0)
Jacksonville Jaguars (1-2)
Indianapolis Colts (1-2)
Houston Texans (0-2)

AFC WEST: Denver Broncos

Denver Broncos (3-0)
Oakland Raiders (1-2)
San Diego Chargers (1-2)
Kansas City Chiefs (0-3)

1. Denver Broncos
2. Buffalo Bills
3. Tennessee Titans
4. Pittsburgh Steelers
5. Baltimore Ravens
6. New York Jets

NFC EAST: Dallas Cowboys

Dallas Cowboys (3-0)
New York Giants (3-0)
Philadelphia Eagles (2-1)
Washington Redskins (2-1)

NFC NORTH: Green Bay Packers

Green Bay Packers (2-1)
Chicago Bears (1-2)
Minnesota Vikings (1-2)
Detroit Lions (0-3)

NFC SOUTH: Carolina Panthers

Atlanta Falcons (2-1)
Carolina Panthers (2-1)
Tampa Bay Buccaneers (2-1)
New Orleans Saints (1-2)

NFC WEST: Arizona Cardinals

Arizona Cardinals (2-1)
San Francisco 49ers (2-1)
Seattle Seahawks (1-2)
St. Louis Rams (0-3)

1. Dallas Cowboys
2. Green Bay Packers
3. Arizona Cardinals
4. Carolina Panthers
5. New York Giants
6. Philadelphia Eagles


Wild Card Round


Titans over Jets
Steelers over Ravens


Eagles over Cardinals
Giants over Panthers

Divisional Round


Steelers over Broncos
Bills over Titans


Cowboys over Eagles
Packers over Giants

Conference Championships


Bills over Steelers


Packers over Cowboys

Super Bowl

Packers over Bills


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