2008 NFL Season Analysis: Without Plaxico Burress, the Giants Stay On Top

Mike CraigCorrespondent IDecember 2, 2008

So once again, things just keep getting interesting in the NFL.

Plaxico Burress shot himself in the leg. Not very smart of him. However, the Giants proved that they do not need that ego on their team to win.

The Titans beat the Lions, making Detroit 0-12. However, this does not prove anything for Tennessee. With the remainder of their schedule easy, the real challenge will be when they meet up with the Pittsburgh Steelers.

The Vikings beat the Bears to take sole ownership of the lead in the NFC North. While the Packers lost a close one against the Panthers. Count on the NFC North race not to be decided until seasons end.

The Pittsburgh Steelers dominated the New England Patriots showing that they may very well be the best team in the AFC right now. Meanwhile, the Jets lost to the Broncos still keeping them only one game ahead in the AFC East.

Mike Craig's Power Rankings (1-32)

  1. New York Giants (11-1) (LW 1) - Who ever said they needed Plaxico?
  2. Tennessee Titans (11-1) (LW 3) - Congratulations! You beat the Detroit Kitties! Do you think you will be that dominant when you let Pittsburgh come into town?
  3. Pittsburgh Steelers (9-3) (LW 6) - Sure, it was the Matt Cassel-led-Patriots, but the Tom Brady-led-Patriots are only slightly better. Think you can handle Dallas that way?
  4. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (9-3) (LW 4) - Big game Monday night. Think you can handle them Panthers to stay on top?
  5. New York Jets (8-4) (LW 2) - Should I even ask?
  6. Atlanta Falcons (8-4) (LW 7) - It's a close division. Do you think if you win the rest of your games you could win it?
  7. Carolina Panthers (9-3) (LW 8) - The Bucs win the tiebreaker, so you have to win here no matter what. Think you can do it?
  8. Indianapolis Colts (8-4) (LW 9) - How did you not beat them by much more than that?
  9. Miami Dolphins (7-5) (LW 10) - The only team to win the AFC East this week. Now you are tied for second, how does it feel?
  10. Minnesota Vikings (7-5) (LW 11) - Now that looks like a record for a team that is headed to the playoffs, doesn't it?
  11. Arizona Cardinals (7-5) (LW 5) - Can you please tell me when you will learn how to play football on the East Coast?
  12. Dallas Cowboys (8-4) (LW 13) - You are hopeing that Carolina and Atlanta lose this weekend, right?
  13. Baltimore Ravens (8-4) (LW 14) - Aren't you a little tired of being one game behind?
  14. Denver Broncos (7-5) (LW 17) - I do not know what that was, but do you think you can do it again?
  15. New England Patriots (7-5) (LW 12) - How is anybody supposed to take you seriously when you play like that?
  16. Philadelphia Eagles (6-5-1) (LW 22) - Where was this McNabb hiding all season?
  17. New Orleans Saints (6-6) (LW 16) - How can you lose to Tampa Bay like that after that game against Green Bay?
  18. Houston Texans (5-7) (LW 23) - Keep up the good work, after all you do know people are watching right?
  19. Chicago Bears (6-6) (LW 18) - Tough break. You know if you do not beat Green Bay, your chances of winning the North are over?
  20. Green Bay Packers (5-7) (LW 19) - You do know you still have a chance to win your division right? Start finishing your games!
  21. Washington Redskins (7-5) (LW 15) - I do not blame you for losing, but is it possible that you could improve how you play football?
  22. Cleveland Browns (4-8) (LW 21) - Brady Quinn, Derek Anderson, umm, who is going to be the starter now?
  23. Buffalo Bills (6-6) (LW 20) - Your plan all along was to give up, right?
  24. San Francisco 49ers (4-8) (LW 26) - Does knowing if you won the rest of your games you could win your division if Arizona suddenly takes a royal fall send chills up your spine?
  25. Jacksonville Jaguars (4-8) (LW 24) - How did you win four games again?
  26. San Diego Chargers (4-8) (LW 25) - Who are you, and what have you done with the Chargers?
  27. Kansas City Chiefs (2-10) (LW 31) - There you go! Do you really fell better knowing you have more than one win?
  28. Oakland Raiders (3-9) (LW 27) - You already beat the Chiefs once, and then you beat the Jets and the Broncos as well. How did you lose?
  29. Seattle Seahawks (2-10) (LW 28) - Will Mike Holmgren even be able to retire or will he be fired?
  30. St. Louis Rams (2-10) (LW 29) - Perhaps if you tried to play football you would win, you think?
  31. Cincinnati Bengals (1-10-1) (LW 30) - Did Carson Palmer really make you guys that much better?
  32. Detroit Lions (0-12) (LW 32) - If you go 0-16, will that be the wake up call this team has been needing?

Division Predictions After Week 13

AFC EAST: New York Jets

New York Jets (8-4)
New England Patriots (7-5)
Miami Dolphins (7-5)
Buffalo Bills (6-6)

AFC NORTH: Pittsburgh Steelers

Pittsburgh Steelers (9-3)
Baltimore Ravens (8-4)
Cleveland Browns (4-8)
Cincinnati Bengals (1-10-1)

AFC SOUTH: Tennessee Titans

Tennessee Titans (11-1)
Indianapolis Colts (8-4)
Houston Texans (5-7)
Jacksonville Jaguars (4-8)

AFC WEST: Denver Broncos

Denver Broncos (7-5)
San Diego Chargers (4-8)
Oakland Raiders (3-9)
Kansas City Chiefs (2-10)


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

NFC EAST: New York Giants

New York Giants (11-1)
Dallas Cowboys (8-4)
Washington Redskins (7-5)
Philadelphia Eagles (6-5-1)

NFC NORTH: Minnesota Vikings

Minnesota Vikings (7-5)
Chicago Bears (6-6)
Green Bay Packers (5-7)
Detroit Lions (0-12)

NFC SOUTH: Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Tampa Bay Buccaneers (9-3)
Carolina Panthers (9-3)
Atlanta Falcons (8-4)
New Orleans Saints (6-6)

NFC WEST: Arizona Cardinals

Arizona Cardinals (7-5)
San Francisco 49ers (4-8)
Seattle Seahawks (2-10)
St. Louis Rams (2-10)


1. New York Giants
2. Tampa Bay Buccaneers
3. Minnesota Vikings
4. Arizona Cardinals
5. Carolina Panthers
6. Atlanta Falcons

Playoff Predictions

Wild Card
AFC - Baltimore Ravens @ New York Jets (Jets)
        Indianapolis Colts @ Denver Broncos (Colts)

NFC - Atlanta Falcons @ Minnesota Vikings (Falcons)
        Carolina Panthers @ Arizona Cardinals (Panthers)

Division Round
AFC - New York Jets @ Pittsburgh Steelers (Steelers)
        Indianapolis Colts @ Tennessee Titans (Colts)

NFC - Carolina Panthers @ Tampa Bay Buccaneers (Panthers)
        Atlanta Falcons @ New York Giants (Giants)

AFC - Indianapolis Colts @ Pittsburgh Steelers (Steelers)

NFC - Carolina Panthers @ New York Giants (Giants)

Super Bowl XLIII
Pittsburgh Steelers vs. New York Giants (Giants)


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