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Ranking the Contenders

Where are the cries “If only the Colts had a QB”? The defense continues to play well and that has a lot to do with Dwight Freeney. Edge is running wild in his free agent year. But if this team had a QB, they’d be unstoppable. Obviously they do have a QB, he’s still one of the best, but they finally understand they need more than him to win. Yeah teams are dropping 8 against him but not as often as people are making it out to be. The Colts are doing this to themselves, and I believe it’s on purpose. Sure every team wants to score, but they’ve been there done that. What they lacked was physical play late in the year, and they are using this for practice. One of these weeks a team will put pressure on the Colts, and then you’ll see what there passing game can do.


And speaking of QB’s responding to pressure in key games, is there anyone better at it than Brady?  I haven’t seen it. Losing two games in a row would have been tough to overcome this early in the season and with their schedule. After a bad week last week, he responded with a great game against a great team…….he’s well just great.


As for the rest of the top 5, Cinnci keeps winning, McNabb keeps gutting it out and Pittsburgh gets a week off to regroup.


KC took the biggest hit this week dropping from 5 to 13 after an embarrassing loss in Denver. Something isn’t quite right with Trent Green.




1.      Indianapolis Colts 3-0 (1): The defense continues to impress. Too much will be made of the lack of production in the passing game, it will be there when they need it, it always is.

2.      New England Patriots 2-1 (4): After a tough loss in Carolina last week the Patriots overcame injuries and a slew of penalties for a tough road victory against one of the NFL elite. That’s what Champions do.

3.      Cincinnati Bengals 3-0 (7): Sticking through the tough times with Palmer last year is paying off, he leads the league in TD passes.

4.      Philadelphia Eagles 2-1 (3): 208 yards and 2 TDs, if the Eagles don’t give Brian Westbrook a big contract extension, someone else will.

5.      Pittsburgh Steelers 2-1 (2): The Steelers offensive line which looked dominant the first two weeks go manhandled by the Patriots.

6.      Tampa Bay Buccaneers 3-0 (6): This just in, Carnell Williams is really good. But they’ll need more plays and less mistakes out of Griese to be among the elite teams.

7.      Atlanta Falcons 2-1 (10): Vick doesn’t need to pass for 300 yards to be effective, he just needs to make plays and he did that this week.

8.      Jacksonville Jaguars 2-1 (11):

9.      Washington Redskins 2-0 (12): The defense is very good, and Portis is getting his job done, but can Mark Brunell be the answer at QB?

10.  Seattle Seahawks 2-1 (15):   Where would this team be without Shaun Alexander? Washington will be a big test for him and Seattle.

11.  Dallas Cowboys 2-1 (13): The Washington loss was tough to take, physically and mentally. Winning on the road coming off a short week is still big even if it was the 49eers

12.  Denver Bronco’s 2-1 (17):  Less of Jake Plummer can be more, and more of that Defense from Monday Night will get them the division.

13.  Kansas City Chiefs 2-0 (5): They got manhandled. The running game did nothing and Green doesn’t look like the past self that could bail the offense out.

14.  Miami Dolphins 2-1 (24): They have more wins than their former Coach Dave Wannstedt has at Pitt, a pre-season top 25 team. Now we know what the real problem in Miami was.

15.  San Diego Chargers 1-2 (14): They have had a tough schedule and this week they got a much needed win. LaDainian Tomlinson must have read last week’s criticism, because he was absolutely dominant

16.  NY Giants 2-1 (8): The Giants defense that looked so good against the Saints and Cardinals got killed by LaDainian Tomlinson on the ground and through the air.

17.  St Louis Rams 2-1 (20): Marc Bulger is going to get killed, and if they don’t start protecting him better, the Rams playoff hopes will be.

18.  Carolina Panthers 1-2 (9):  Beating the Pats was impressive, but losing to 2 teams that weren’t thought to be playoff contenders is not.

19.  Minnesota Vikings 1-2 (27): This was the Vikings team most envisioned when talking about Super Bowl contention.

20.  Oakland Raiders 0-3 (21): Their schedule hasn’t been kind, but they have been competitive every week.

21.  Buffalo Bills 1-2 (16):  Does Buffalo stick with Losman and his growing pains like Cinnci did a year ago or switch to Holcomb and try to get in the playoff race?

22.  NY Jets 1-2 (18): They’ll need to get Curtis Martin going if playoff hopes are to stick around much longer.

23.  Cleveland Browns 1-2 (29): Teams will have to work to beat Cleveland because they are doing little to beat themselves, and that’s an improvement.

24.  Tennessee Titans 1-2 (22): They are getting better and with an easy schedule and a healthy Steve McNair they could make a playoff push. Next week Indy comes to town and that should give a clue on where this team lies.

25.  New Orleans Saints 1-2 (19): When the game becomes about Aaron Brooks making plays, the outcome isn’t good for the Saints. They got to get McAllister the ball 20+ times a game.

26.  Baltimore Ravens 0-2 (14): Hopefully the off week straightens out there offense because till now they can’t run or pass.

27.  Chicago Bears 1-2 (25) Kyle Orton looked like a 4th round rookie QB playing in his 3rd game.

28.  Detroit Lions 1-1 (26): Joey Harrington gets an extra week to prepare for a tough Tampa Bay defense, but the way he played last time he was on the field, 2 weeks might not be enough.

29.  San Francisco 49ers 1-2 (28): Rattay played great for 3 quarters, but couldn’t keep a drive going in the 4th to put the Cowboys away, maybe that’s why they drafted Alex Smith.

30.  Arizona Cardinals 0-3 (30): Kurt Warner getting injured is no longer news, neither is the Cardinals not being very good.

31.  Green Bay Packers 0-3 (31): 0-3 is a tough start to turn around, even in the NFC North.

32.  Houston Texans 0-2 (32):  Texans will need to beat one of the NFL best teams right now (Bengals) on the road in order to get on track. Will 2 weeks of preparation be enough?

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