Week Nine Rankings

nfl

If last week was interesting because it featured the final unbeaten team losing its perfect record, then this week should be notable for the number of games that came down to the wire in overtime. There were some close ones this week and there were some upsets and blowouts. A little bit of everything in fact. So let’s get down to business and see how the rankings hold up.

The Supremo:

  1. New England Patriots- Whether you hate them or love them, whether you’re pro-Brady or anti-Brady, there’s no denying that the Pats are for real for yet another year. Considering they typically win 75% of their games on average anyway, it’s hard to see any team slowing their roll save for the Cowboys if they square off. Then again, stranger things have happened and I wouldn’t want to jinx them. +/- 7-1
  2. Dallas Cowboys- They faced a very competent attack from the talented Carson Wentz in a game that they came back in to bring to overtime and win. Dak Prescott has proved that he means business and that he’s here to stay, but now it’s just a matter of time to see what happens in the Romo-Prescott business in Dallas. The running game wasn’t as dominant as it has been, but then what do you expect when facing the defense that completely stalled the potent Vikings? +/- 6-1
  3. Atlanta Falcons- Only by virtue of better teams losing are some of the teams you will see moving up pretty far, moving up pretty far. The Falcons are not a bad team and they proved that when they managed to stall the Packers and hold out for a one-point victory. A win is a win but they needed to get Julio Jones more active so they could’ve lengthened the lead and not been trailing at the half so badly. +4 5-3
  4. Oakland Raiders- At least as of right now, Oakland is a real contender in the race for the AFC West. Denver keeps slowing down at times even though their record would suggest otherwise. Meanwhile, Derek Carr came off with a ridiculous day (over 500 yards) and outlasted a rallying Buccaneers team that desperately needed the upset victory. Don’t jinx things by hoping too much, but Oakland may be headed for great things in the near future. +4 6-2
  5. Denver Broncos- With a divisional win under their belts, maybe Denver is starting to return to form a little bit and not slack off as much. They still look shaky out there but courtesy of many teams falling out of the top ten race and losing this week, they’re back in the thick of things again. Time can only tell if they have what it takes to punish the rallying Raiders and seal a divisional berth later on. +6 6-2
  6. Kansas City Chiefs- Talk about a pole vault in the rankings. Due to nearly every team between them losing or not playing as dominant of a game, here the unsteady but still ready Chiefs rest. Sure, they played a flawed Colts team and sure the run game hasn’t been what it used to be, and sure Alex Smith is injured for the time being which are all signs that tend to trend towards the negative for the future- but for this week, the Chiefs have done good. +11 5-2
  7. Seattle Seahawks- Truthfully, they could be dropping a lot lower due to a knock-down drag out tie with Arizona the previous week and then a loss to New Orleans this week, however there is still something about this team that should be feared and that others should always be wary of. They have a way of wiggling their way back into the thick of things when you least expect it and I have a feeling an actual loss like this one will make them fight all the more for those hard earned wins they seek. -2 4-2-1
  8. Philadelphia Eagles- The Eagles get some major kudos for pacing the Cowboys for the entirety of the game and only faltering in overtime where they finally broke and allowed a costly touchdown pass to deal their fate. They played great against Minnesota the previous week and proved they were tough enough to stall yet another great unit this week. They are definitely a threat to look out for. -2 4-3
  9. Minnesota Vikings- Another week and another dropped game for the Vikings, although this one could potentially really hurt the previously unbeaten team. They lost to a clearly more dominant (at least tonight) Chicago team in what could turn out to be an important divisional match should things come down between the Packers, Lions, or Vikings for a playoff slot later on in the season. Last week’s loss was a bit more understandable than this one. -6 5-2
  10. Green Bay Packers- After a very narrow loss to the Falcons in a match that could’ve easily gone either team’s way at any point, the Pack gets the pass to move back up the ladder a little bit. Aaron Rodgers is still having some issues but then that’s been characteristic of this season for many usually stoic and strong quarterbacks, and it hasn’t stopped there. If these guys can turn things around next week then they could capitalize on Minnesota’s present state of affairs in the weeks to come. +2 4-3

The Sublime:

  1. Arizona Cardinals- After launching them up the rankings quite a ways these guys seem to have settled relatively in a much more secure and comfortable slot. Their record doesn’t attest to much other than hard luck and down times, but this week’s loss was a low one because it came from a team that hasn’t been very dominant all season even if they were the epitome of that definition last season. -7 3-4-1
  2. Washington Redskins- Sorry Skins fans, you’re moving down slightly this week even though you didn’t lose (or win) a game. The tie with Cincinnati may be just another of many to come as a ton of games this week alone went to overtime, and we’ve already had another tie game this season. It’s a strange thing to come back only to fall short and stagnate for the tie game, but it’s a stranger thing when Josh Norman has about sixty yards of penalties drawn on himself. -3 4-3-1
  3. Houston Texans- Pretty much by virtue of several teams ahead of them having bye weeks or losses, Houston moves up on a win against Detroit. They’ve somehow maintained a winning record although through what black magic I do not know. They’ve yet to be truly dominant and honestly still look like the pretender of the bunch in my opinion. Get that million dollar(s) QB under control. +7 5-3
  4. Pittsburgh Steelers- The Steelers have a little breathing room this week thanks to an opportunistic bye, and they couldn’t have needed it any more after losing Big Ben and subsequently losing to the Patriots. Despite that, things should look up for them soon and I think they’ve got the chance to hammer out a few more wins and to take a more thorough lead in their division as well. After all, the Browns and Ravens are stagnant and the Bengals could go either way. +/- 4-3
  5. Detroit Lions- Slight drop for Matt Stafford and the Lions this week. Honestly after last week’s clutch performance I really had high hopes the team would continue their comeback trend and put an end to the pretender Texans. However, some things just aren’t meant to happen and instead they fell in battle. It wasn’t a pretty game but it wasn’t all bad either. -2 4-4
  6. Buffalo Bills- The Bills came into their match against New England with heads held high but they came out without their heads after Gronk and Brady dropped the guillotine on them. They may have shut the Pats out before but this time things were totally different and it was like watching two totally different squads squaring up. I’m pretty sure the Bills didn’t like this version of history, where Brady cemented his claim on GOAT for yet another game at least. -6 4-4
  7. New York Giants- A slight dip in the rankings for a team that didn’t play this week and that won the defensive battle last week. Sorry guys, tough luck and tough love. There are some good things going on in the entirety of the NFC East division this year which sounds strange to say but I swear it’s true. At least as far as records go thus far. Everyone is winning. -2 4-3
  8. New Orleans Saints- My mistake for putting these guys at 3-3 last week when they were a bleh 2-4, but they rectified that this week with a surprise win (thanks referees) over the Seahawks to move up the chain. Drew Brees continues to do Drew Brees things although this time he faced down a team playing against Jimmy Graham rather than with him. So some things were familiar at times at least. +1 3-4
  9. Cincinnati Bengals- The Bungles moved down a few spots even with their tie, mainly because the teams above deserved more credit for their victories or performances than the Bengals did for theirs. They’re not quite batting .500 yet but they’re trying desperately to claw their way back to relevance and I’ve got to at least respect them for that right now. -3 3-4-1
  10. San Diego Chargers- They couldn’t quite tap into the same magic that handed them back to back wins over the Broncos and Falcons, so this week their divisional rival Broncos took them down a notch to even the series. Don’t count these guys out at all though. Even down a bunch of key players, the defense has stepped up and the offensive unit with Rivers is always a threat. -2 3-5

The Slime:

  1. Tennessee Titans- The Titans are up and down week to week but this week they boosted themselves up a few slots so let’s see if they can finally get the forward motion rolling again. On the bright side, they’ve now won probably more games than in the past few seasons. However there’s still some things to work on like the turnover battle and the passing game being more consistent. +2 4-4
  2. Miami Dolphins- The Dolphins stay put for now thanks to the bye and also to the solid back to back performances they’ve had in surprise wins over Pittsburgh and Buffalo. Honestly, I’m pumped to see how a team I’d formerly all but given up on does in their next few games if they can use the bye and their momentum high to keep on trucking. +/- 3-4
  3. Indianapolis Colts- Slight drop for the Colts after the utter beating they suffered at the hands of the Chiefs Sunday. Now, don’t mention anything along the lines of a barbed wire covered baseball bat, but it was almost as terrifying at times. Andrew Luck is virtually one of the only people carrying this team right now and when he has off days too, they can’t win. -2 3-5
  4. Tampa Bay Buccaneers- Sure it was a loss but you can’t fault these pirates for wanting the win and going all out even into overtime to try and steal it from the Raiders. It was a grudge match among pirates and only one could walk away victorious. It wasn’t a bad game but they’ve still got some ways to go if they want to be real contenders. Maybe taking the Falcons down a notch would help. +1 3-4
  5. Baltimore Ravens- Baltimore got edged out by the Buccaneers despite being off this week, but it’s hard to believe they would’ve moved up at all regardless considering their current downward trend week to week after such a bright start. I’m not entirely sure what the major malfunction is but they certainly can’t continue to throw in the towel before the game is even won or lost. -1 3-4
  6. Chicago Bears- Chicago finally moves higher that they probably have gone all season thanks to a surprise win over divisional rival Minnesota tonight. Who would’ve thought Jay Cutler returning could be so exciting? Then again, the Vikings seem to be catching whatever fever the Broncos had for a few weeks so only time will tell how the division even turns out. +4 2-6
  7. Carolina Panthers- The only reason this team isn’t higher than the Bears is because they played the Cards and not the Vikings. Tell me which is a little more impressive to hold onto a win against. That’s what I thought. Regardless, the Panthers finally got another win so let’s see if this turns out to be 2014 all over again where they somehow clutch the divisional berth and make it to the playoffs. +2 2-5
  8. Los Angeles Rams- Some weeks you don’t even play and you move down, that’s just the way of the world. But let’s see if the Rams can pull off some real magic and a) finally let Jared Goff start and b) start winning some more games instead of giving them away after a great initial turnaround. -2 3-4
  9. New York Jets- I won’t lie, I honestly placed other teams above the Jets because the Jets beat the Browns and barely at that. I really thought the Browns had it in them to win this one but they set out for another heart-breaker instead. At least on the bright side they’ll have plenty more draft picks with which to craft the perfect team and soar to 14-2 next year right? Right? Oh right, were we talking about the Jets a moment ago? -2 3-5
  10. Jacksonville Jaguars- Until the second half the Jags were in for an utter trainwreck of a night against the Titans and it didn’t get much better from then on out although the final score may lead you to believe otherwise. They have a history of getting close but not quite succeeding and that was clearly on display yet again. Plus, when your coach is about 14-40, something is wrong. -2 2-5

The Straight to DVD:

  1. San Fransisco 49ers- Not much has changed for the bottom dwellers of the league, save for the fact that these ones got a brief reprieve from their damnation and suffering this week. +/- 1-6
  2. Cleveland Browns- The Indians may let the Cubs come back. Tune in with interest because there’s nothing else in Cleveland to see save for the Cavaliers right now. Seriously guys. Win one game so I can put you above the 49ers. +/- 0-8
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millie schmidt writes... with cats

millie schmidt writes...

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