NFL Power Rankings: Which Teams Just Plain Suck?
There are generally three basic tiers you can use to separate NFL teams on a yearly basis. You have the contenders, pretenders and teams that basically just suck.
The NFL has really become a quarterback league, making it almost impossible to do anything without a quality passer. That means that teams that are at the bottom of the league probably have major issues at quarterback.
While the running game used to carry a lot of weight, that isn't really the case anymore. The Green Bay Packers won the Super Bowl last year without a big-name runner, and even though Minnesota's Adrian Peterson has continued to be a top runner this year, his team is 1-6.
With that being said, the following takes a look at five of the teams that literally have no hope this season. And I can assure you that all of them would love to have a better passing game than they currently do.
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Who knew how much one player could mean to a team?
The absence of Peyton Manning in 2011 due to a neck injury has the Indianapolis Colts looking more like a pee wee team than an NFL franchise.
Since the Colts have never rostered an adequate backup to Manning during his career (they never needed to because he basically plays every snap), there's no wonder that their offense has taken a downward plunge this year.
But that doesn't explain why their defense has given up the most points by far in 2011. They are coming off allowing 62 points to the Saints in Week 7, the most in the NFL in three decades.
Indianapolis sits at 0-7 and has a legitamate chance at going winless this season. While Curtis Painter has the offense looking a little better than Kerry Collins did, there doesn't seem to be any motivation right now for the Colts.
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Well, you can't say you didn't see this coming. Neither Miami Dolphins head coach Tony Sporano nor quarterback Chad Henne were backed by the franchise in the offseason.
Miami is another one of the winless teams, and Henne has found himself on IR. Henne was one of the bottom-tier quarterbacks to begin with, and now Brandon Marshall is running routes for the less-talented Matt Moore.
The Dolphins should have a nice offensive future, as rookie Daniel Thomas has looked solid when healthy and Marshall is one of the league's better wide receivers. But in order to make that come to fruition, they need to find a franchise quarterback.
Saint Louis Rams
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The Saint Louis Rams headed into the 2011 season as a contender for the NFC West title at worst. Instead, they now find themselves at 0-6, five games behind San Francisco.
The Rams have just 56 points through six games, and have a chance to set the kind of records you don't want to achieve. Quarterback Sam Bradford has been beat-up and inconsistent due to a subpar offensive line.
While they have had a lot of injuries, no one expected the Rams to be as bad as they have been. The only game that they were even close to winning was the 17-10 loss to Washington in Week 4.
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Arizona is another shockingly bad team from the NFC West this season. Many thought that all the Cardinals needed was a quarterback to become a threat, and the trade for Kevin Kolb gave them optimism heading into 2011.
Instead, Kolb has struggled, showing his lack of experience. He hasn't been able to use Larry Fitzgerald as much as he should, as Fitzgerald is one of the most talented receivers in all of football.
After defeating the Carolina Panthers in Week 1, the Cardinals had three consecutive heart-breaking losses. While that stretch of games showed they could hang with their opponents, they also showed what kind of team they really were.
Arizona got blown out by Minnesota and Pittsburgh the last two weeks, and is now clearly out of the picture in the division.
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Even though the Jaguars had a fluke win against Baltimore on Monday night, they are not really a good team. The win was more of a product of the Ravens not coming to play than Jacksonville actually winning the game.
After releasing starting quarterback David Garrard just before the 2011 season, Jaguars quarterbacks Luke McCown and Blaine Gabbert have been epically bad. Running back Maurice Jones-Drew literally carries their offense.
The Jaguars have managed to win two games this year, mostly due to their defense. But when you can't move the ball through the air, you know your team is going to suck, and that's the problem Jacksonville is facing.