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1- 49ers (2). The near unanimous best team in football. You can’t run on them ever, and you usually can’t pass on them. All the while Alex Smith becomes more and more comfortable and can actually now go out and make some, emphasis on some, plays.
2- Texans (4). Like the 49ers are a unanimous number one, I think the Texans are a clear cut number No. 2. They’ve got maybe the best defensive player in the conference on clearly the best defense in the conference. Add to that the league’s most devastating 1-2 punch in the backfield, and you’ve got a very legitimate title contender.
3- Eagles (17). Philadelphia* has turned the ball over nine times… And yet they’re one of e league’s remaining six undefeated teams. Call me crazy, but I don’t think they’re going to have 70 turnovers this year, and once they get the turnovers in line they’re going to be tough to beat.
*Entire paragraph voided when Vick suffers his nearly inevitable 6 week injury.
4- Ravens (3). My only worry with Baltimore: Yes Joe Flacco looked great in week one against the Bengals… but Brandon Weeden just threw for 300+ yards on those same Bengals, so I’m going to need to see a bit more. If Flacco can regularly play on that level, this rating mig be too low, if he can’t, it’s likely a couple spots too high.
5- Packers (8). They can validate this ranking by going to Seattle Monday night,in what will be an impossibly tough environment, and winning the game. For now, here’s what The Packers have going for them: In all of their games this year, they will have the better QB and in nearly all of them they’ll have the best defensive player on the field.
6- Atlanta (9). That Asante Samuel trade is looking smarter and smarter by the day, isn’t it? I’m still not fully buying into the Falcons–the Chiefs are awful and Peyton’s three picks won’t happen very often. But right now, the Falcons are playing great football.
7- Patriots (1). That Aaron Hernandez injury is going to loom awfully large, especially if Wes Welker and Bill Belichick don’t kiss and make up. But their defensive draft picks look like really good players and Brady is Brady, so we all assume they’ll be fine, and they likely will be.
8- Broncos (5). 3 picks or not, Peyton still terrifies me. And, there aren’t many teams in the league with three legitimately elite players on defense like the Broncos.
9- Giants (11). Whether it’s in individual games or entire seasons, this team sure seems to have a tendency to be downright bad early, and simply marvelous late. No team in the NFL has two weapons at WR like the Giants in Cruz and Nicks.
10- Bears (7) I can’t write them off simply because what we knew was going to be their biggest issue—offensive line—continues to be a major issue. Still think this is a potential NFC title caliber team.
11- Steelers (13) I don’t like the Steelers this year, but every time I watch Roethlesberger I come away more amazed than the time before. I don’t think they have enough running and their defense is getting older and older, but Big Ben is one of the most under-appreciated players in the league.
12- Chargers (16). I can’t believe in them… yet. Maybe this is just what they needed—a year with no expectations whatsoever to get them off on the right track. But I don’t believe in their coach and the defense lacks and big time players.
13- Cowboys (6). This team has too much talent to consistently, year in year out, have just inexplicable “no show” games like they did last week in Seattle.
14- Jets (10). Still think 9-7 and a playoff berth is real possibility in the AFC this year, but their offense got man-handled by the Steelers for the final 50 minutes of the game Sunday.
15- Lions (14). Yet to play anything close to a good 60 minutes of football.
16- Bucs(18). Could they be the surprising playoff team from the NFC?
17- Cardinals (24). Winners of 9 of their last 11… somehow.
18- Panthers (20). Cam Newton is must see TV, and he’s on national TV Thursday.
19- Saints (15). The only 0-2 team in the NFC. Let that sink in for a moment.
20- Seahawks (25). If not for 2 dropped TD passes in Week 1, we’re talking about the 2-0 Seahawks and the legend of Russell Wilson.
21- Bengals (21). Worst pass defense in football? Maybe, after letting Weeden throw for 300+ with no turnovers.
22- Redskins (12). Losses of Orakpo and Carriker essentially ends their competitive season after Week 2. A lot of Ls on the horizon for RGIII.
23- Colts (30). Looked the best they’ve looked since 2010 in Week 2.
24- Vikings (19). They lose Week 2 basically how the won Week 1.
25- Rams (27). The Rams aren’t an easy out, and Bradford is showing signs of life.
26- Bills (28). CJ Spiller could be the real deal this season.
27- Dolphins (32). If they weren’t on Hard Knocks—after dominating the Raiders—they’d probably be 10 spots higher.
28- Browns (31). Look at the Browns defying all odds and getting out of the bottom three!
29- Jaguars (23). Blaine Gabbert looks like Blaine Gabbert again.
30- Titans (26). A trendy pick to go 9-7 might go 3-13.
31- Chiefs (22). I’m too sick to talk about it.
32- Raiders (29). The only silver lining in a bleak season for Chiefs fans.
In the Loop TOP 10 AND BOTTOM 5
1. San Francisco 49ers (2-0)
2. Houston Texans (2-0)
3. Green Bay Packers (1-1)
4. Baltimore Ravens (1-1)
5. Atlanta Falcons (2-0)
6. New England Patriots (1-1)
7. Philadelphia Eagles (2-0)
8. Pittsburgh Steelers (1-1)
9. San Diego Chargers (2-0)
10. New York Giants (1-1)
28. Oakland Raiders (0-2)
29. Tennessee Titans (0-2)
30. Cleveland Browns (0-2)
31. Jacksonville Jaguars (0-2)
32. Kansas City Chiefs (0-2)
1. San Francisco
3. New England
4. Green Bay
7. San Diego
1. Jacksonville (worst)
4. Kansas City