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 My Power Rankings - A must criticize 
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Post My Power Rankings - A must criticize
1. New England Patriots - Only an injury to Brady can knock this team from the top of the charts. To be the champs, you have to beat the champs, and no one has done that in the playoffs the last 4 years.

2. Philadelphia Eagles - It will be interesting to see how Simon and Owens are dealt with. Even without them, this is the clear cut best team in the NFC. McNabb played fantastic last season.

3. Indianapolis Colts - When you look at their defensive lineup, it?s hard to call this the 3rd best team in the league. Will Dungy?s draft picks pan out? A healthy Manning should still yield 11 wins.

4. Pittsburgh Steelers - Some may say I should put them higher. But Roethlisberger being a sophomore scares me, as he could be in a slump. The secondary still scares me.

5. Atlanta Falcons - It?s really hard to talk about this team and not mention Vick. He is a difference maker. But last year it was Atlanta?s 1-2 punch at running back as well as strong defensive front that got it done.

6. Baltimore Ravens - They still have Kyle Boller at quarterback. It?s hard to win Super Bowls with players in the bottom 10 of the league at their respective position. Best secondary in the league, and Ray Lewis. But also lost Hartwell, Boulware, and Douglas.

7. Jacksonville Jaguars - Boom or bust team. I think they boom. Leftwich should have a great year, Taylor is in a contract year and needs to prove himself. They fixed the defensive end problem (hopefully).

8. New York Jets - A healthy Pennington gets this team into the playoffs. Martin is the energizer bunny? keeps going and going. Do the have the playmakers on offense? Was Jason Ferguson vital to that defense?

9. Denver Broncos - Drastically underrated team. Continually amongst the best in the NFL, yet receive little respect. Their drafting makes me laugh, 3 corners and Clarett. As well as going after Browns rejects to fix the D-Line. Who will carry the load?

10. Green Bay Packers - The ultimate boom or bust team. Their offensive guards were integral to their rushing attack. How will they do without them? No moves were made to drastically improve the defense. What about Walker?s holdout? What about Franks? holdout?

11. Minnesota Vikings - Green Bay is still the champs of the NFC North. Minnesota needs to knock them from that title to become the better team. How much will the offense miss Moss and O. Smith? Will the defense gel in enough time?

12. Carolina Panthers - The loss of Muhammad hurts, as they now have little depth behind the top 3 receivers; Smith who is coming off an injury, Colbert who is going into his second year, and Proehl who is on the verge of retirement. Will the O-Line hold up?

13. Cincinnati Bengals - Yes, they are a top 13 team. They didn?t miss a beat placing Palmer in last year, and now he is a year more mature. The defense is the key to this team?s success.

14. Arizona Cardinals - This high for one reason - Kurt Warner. Was the best free agent quarterback out there, and is in a great situation where he can beat up on the team that made him famous.

15. San Diego Chargers - Was last year a complete fluke? How will the quarterback situation play out? When will we see Rivers? Will Merriman?s holdout distract the team at all?

16. Kansas City Chiefs - Their receivers may be the least talented in the league, but they still have one of the best offenses in the league. Will the defense finally play football?

17. Seattle Seahawks - How will the Alexander holdout distract the team? Do they have enough playmakers at the wide out position to form a formidable passing attack? Lost key players in Okeafor and Lucas.

18. New Orleans Saints - Does Jim Haslett even know that his rushing defense was 30th in the NFL last season? Or did he neglect to address the linebackers and defensive tackles for some other reason?

19. Oakland Raiders - Their offense looks scary. As does their defense. Hopefully this didn?t confuse you. Moss is pissed and is going to have a career year. Take him for your fantasy team.

20. St. Louis Rams - It?s Martz. Who knows?

21. New York Giants - Manning has become ?the man? in New York City. Made some great acquisitions this off-season in the draft and free agency. Will be in the playoffs in 2007.

22. Houston Texans - They didn?t make the moves to put them into the playoffs this off-season. The loss of two defensive leaders hurts big-time. Still don?t like their offensive line they have.

23. Chicago Bears - Like the addition of Muhammad, and getting Grossman back should help drastically. The defense is young and talented. Benson is ready to start from day one. Do they have other targets than Muhammad?

24. Dallas Cowboys - Really, I don?t want to hear it. Your quarterback is Drew Bledsoe, and your defense is in the process of an overhaul. I?m awaiting the messages I?m not responding to. This isn?t a 10-6 team.

25. Buffalo Bills - J.P. Losman is the determining factor for this team. The odds are against him having a good season, but we?ll see. I wonder how he?ll do with that offensive line ahead of him.

26. Tampa Bay Buccaneers - The team that is becoming the Raiders of the East had a tough off-season, watching quality players walk and getting essentially no one.

27. Detroit Lions - If Harrington falters just one bit, then this team is done. Few improvements made to a below average defense. How will this young group of playmakers work together?

28. Washington Redskins - Ramsey, Brunell, Campbell, oh my! 2-1 odds on the Redskins finishing last in passing yards this year. And their defense isn?t improved. Will Sean Taylor be on the field?

29. Tennessee Titans - Be happy that I didn?t put you last. I like both their quarterbacks, as well as Chris Brown. They really need to stay healthy or it will be a long season.

30. Miami Dolphins - Made some nice moves this off-season? on the wrong side of the ball. A.J. Feeley is still the quarterback for this team and Patrick Surtain is out.

31. Cleveland Browns - Is Trent Dilfer really the answer to their quarterback problems? Is he even better than Garcia was? Can Suggs or Droughns prove to be a feature back? How will Romeo?s 3-4 do?

32. San Francisco 49ers - How can you justify giving Jonas Jennings that much money? Will likely turn to Smith quickly, which generally means a below .400 season. Or maybe they can work magic like the previous 2 #1 pick owners did.


June 19th, 2005, 11:47 am
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"27. Detroit Lions - If Harrington falters just one bit, then this team is done. Few improvements made to a below average defense. How will this young group of playmakers work together? "

Looks pretty good, although I just skimmed the rest. Per the first sentence what about Garcia? Personally, I think he could take over. If you don't you might want to explain since many figure he will actually start sooner or later. The Lions' rank was below average and there were little high profile additions, but potentially the additions of an inside pass rusher, a thumper, and secondary death could pay large dividends if the offense is a top 10 unit. Did you mean "offensive" playmakers. I was not sure, and it could be read in different ways.

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June 19th, 2005, 12:41 pm
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Of course I go straight for the Leos. They were close to the middle of the pack on defense in the high teens and that has a lot more to do with their offense than their defense. We have a legit backup too so Harrington is not the focal point of the offense especially if you are basing Zonas success on Kurt Warner. If our WRs stay healthy we will move the ball and greatly improve our offense to more middle of the pack and thus our defense will see the biggest improvement not spending the entire game on the field and allowing our playmakers to have fresh legs to well...make plays. You cannot assume the best for a team like Zona and then not for Detroit :P















am a homer...sue me :roll:

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June 19th, 2005, 12:43 pm
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Hey Brian, your rankings look pretty good over all. The one thing about this format I have never liked is that the system poorly reflects the clustering of NFL teams. In practice the difference between #11 and #25 is often miniscule to non-existent for example. Also, fans tend to dispute not the text but the number for their hometeam. In that light, I wonder about a reform in the rankings articles to reflect more substantiative differences: between say the title contenders, playoff contenders, playoff pretenders, and the doormats. I guess you could have various and a varying number of categories, but going back through the years those five categories are pretty representative of reality.

I did this a while back with the playoff field, although the graphics was screwed up.

http://www.thelionsfanatics.com/insider_news_147.html

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June 19th, 2005, 1:27 pm
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I think that's very true Yorick... a lot of the teams are quality teams near the bottom of the list, when there isn't much of a difference between the 27th team and the 10th team.

The thing about the Lions is this. Detroit doesn't have much confidence in Harrington. They are relying on a sophomore and two freshman (Roy Williams, Charles Rogers, and Mike Williams) to carry the load offensively. It will be interesting to see if these young receivers can match their potential with production, I don't see it happening.

If Joey doesn't have a great start, the fans will boo, and he will get pulled. Once that happens, the season is over. I don't think much of, actually, I think Jeff Garcia sucks. He showed last year he was washed up. I read reports from training camp that he was missing passes, he doesn't have a strong arm, and is playing with a bunch of new guys.

We can't have a quarterback controversy and expect this team to win. We have to put all our faith in Joey Harrington. And I really don't think that he is good enough to be "the man". I may be wrong. Thousands of fans may be wrong. But Joey hasn't shown that he can execute an offense with continuity for me to believe that this is an above .500 team.

Detroit is still very young. I personally don't see this team "clicking" until next year. Roy Williams will establish himself into one of the best receivers in the league then. Kevin Jones will be a couple more years mature. We will know what to expect out of Rogers. Mike Williams won't be a rookie.

I'm taking the worst possible approach to the Lions this year. Last year, I was optimistic. I thought we would be in contention for the NFCN crown. But this year, hopefully the Lions will prove me wrong. We lost to the Titans last year, needed a blown call to overcome the Bears, and 4 interceptions by John Navarre to beat the Cardinals.

I'm guessing 7-9 for the Lions this year. When I made these power rankings, I though 6-10, but I changed my opinion.

As for the Cardinals, I did research. The teams that make the big jump each year are the teams that do stuff to their quarterback position. If you find the right quarterback, you generally make a huge jump (see SD, ATL, and PIT last year). If you acquire a poor quarterback, you will fall (see SF, MIA, and DAL).

I think that Warner is a great fit. Arizona is a "boom" team in my opinion. He can throw the deep ball in Green's offense, which has a vastly underrated group of receivers in Boldin, Fitzgerald and Johnson, acquired a back that Denny thinks is a steal (Arrington), got a stud DE (Okeafor), acquired a great corner (Rolle), improved the offensive line (Ross & Brown(?)), etc. etc.

Now, these type of teams who make these numerous off-season additions typically don't fare well. See Washington, Oakland, and Detroit last season. But the teams that find consistency at the QB position will end up having a much better season, which is why I think the Cardinals do well next season.

Sorry about the reasoning for the Cowgirls, I actually posted this in another forum, full of Cowgirl fans, and I really didn't want to hear it from them. Lets just say I have no faith in Bledsoe, don't think that the additions will do much (they are mainly rookies), and didn't fix all their problems.


June 19th, 2005, 3:18 pm
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Brian wrote:
If you find the right quarterback, you generally make a huge jump (see SD, ATL, and PIT last year).


San Diego actually stuck with their incumbent starter because Rivers held out. If that's who you mean by a new QB, i don't see your logic. The only sense i make of that is he put pressure on Brees.


June 19th, 2005, 4:54 pm
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LionsFan54 wrote:
Brian wrote:
If you find the right quarterback, you generally make a huge jump (see SD, ATL, and PIT last year).


San Diego actually stuck with their incumbent starter because Rivers held out. If that's who you mean by a new QB, i don't see your logic. The only sense i make of that is he put pressure on Brees.


Rivers was there for the pre-season, and could have started the regular season, though.

They brought a new QB in, in Rivers, which essentially pushed their starting QB to greater heights. They found consistency at the QB position by bringing in someone else to push the incumbent.


June 19th, 2005, 6:06 pm
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Brian wrote:
We lost to the Titans last year, needed a blown call to overcome the Bears, and 4 interceptions by John Navarre to beat the Cardinals


It's so true it hurts - deep down inside.

Brian wrote:
I'm guessing 7-9 for the Lions this year. When I made these power rankings, I though 6-10, but I changed my opinion.


The NFCN is going to be pretty tough this year. The Pack, as always, are tough, the Vikes are usually a good team that falls apart, and the Bears have SLOWLY been getting better since 2001 when they won 13.

Brian wrote:
If you acquire a poor quarterback, you will fall (see SF, MIA, and DAL).


Don't forget about Brunell in Washington. Probably the worst move at QB last season. Also, there's no way I can imagine that Warner will live up to expectation of Card's fans. He has to do so much, and won't IMO. I just don't see it happening. Nor do they have a solid backup. McCown is terrible IMO.

Brian wrote:
I think that Warner is a great fit. Arizona is a "boom" team in my opinion. He can throw the deep ball in Green's offense, which has a vastly underrated group of receivers in Boldin, Fitzgerald and Johnson, acquired a back that Denny thinks is a steal (Arrington), got a stud DE (Okeafor), acquired a great corner (Rolle), improved the offensive line (Ross & Brown(?)), etc. etc.


How much impact can so many rookies make? I can't expect Blackstock, Eric Green, Arrington, Elton Brown (okay, probably not Brown), and Rolle all to live up to expectations and make big impacts. I don't know. Doesn't seem possible IMO, and that's what the Cards need to make a serious run this year and win their division; they need all their rookies to make huge impacts.


June 21st, 2005, 8:11 am
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