Week 9 NFL Power Rankings
by Robert Ferringo - 11/01/2006
I know you were all sorely missing the NFL Ferringo Report this weekend. However, I've been working on some exciting new projects for Doc's Sports (you'll find out what in a few days). Anyway, to make it up to you I've drummed up a super-sized Power Rankings for you this weekend.
And without further ado here are my Week 8 Power Rankings:
1. Chicago (7-0) - Just another chapter in a historic season. They've currently got the third-highest point differential through seven games ever, outscoring opponents 221-69 (+152). Now they get a visit from their old friend Joey Harrington.
2. Indianapolis (7-0) -In their past five wins, all of which saw them trailing at some point, they scored on 16-of-23 drives (70 percent) in the second half while going 19-for-28 on third down. In those five games the Colts are averaging just eight points in the first half. And on the year, teams are averaging 5.4 yards rushing against them.
3. New England (6-1) - Bill Belichick is 9-2 against Peyton Manning since 2000, and Tom Brady is 6-1 in head-to-head matchups against Manning.
4. Denver (5-2) - The Broncos are just 1-3 ATS against Pittsburgh. I don't think last week's game is one that Darrent Williams will soon forget. And I don't think opposing offensive coordinators will soon forget it either.
5. Baltimore (5-2) - Cincinnati has come into Baltimore's house and beaten the Ravens each of the past two years. Baltimore is 0-3 ATS against the Bengals, but is 7-2 ATS at home against them.
5. San Diego (5-2) - The Chargers will be without half of their starting front seven on Sunday. Shawne Merriman, Igor Olshansky, Shaun Phillips and Steve Foley will all be out. The Chargers are 17-4-1 ATS versus teams with a losing record.
6. New York Giants (5-2) - Look for a possible look-ahead game this week with Chicago rolling into town in Week 10. Tiki Barber leads the league in rushing but still doesn't have a touchdown.
7. Atlanta (5-2) - The Falcons are 4-1 ATS against Detroit and 5-1 ATS in their last six in Motown. Atlanta's offense has been outstanding over the past two weeks, but its defense cannot stop anyone. The front four is getting mauled and other than Patrick Kearney they aren't producing any pass rush.
8. New Orleans (5-2) - In their last six games against the Bucs, the Saints are just 1-5 ATS. However, they are 3-1 ATS in Tampa. The Saints have mustered just 84 yards and 3.7 yards per carry over the course of their last four games.
10. Dallas (4-3) - I hate having them this high, and I really think they're about one hair better than the No. 17 team on this list. I mean, why is everyone bobbing on Tony Romo's knob? The Cowboys were down 14-0 and would have lost if not for Carolina's three-turnover meltdown in the fourth quarter.
11. Jacksonville (4-3) - Garrard is 5-1 as a starter. He may be good enough to keep this team afloat, but he's not good enough to cover big numbers and not good enough to get them to the playoffs.
12. Kansas City (4-3) - I can't stress enough what a phenomenal mistake it would be to bench Damon Huard for Trent Green. Huard is 4-2 as a starter and is the No. 3 passer in the league. He has complete control of this offense and this team.
13. Philadelphia (4-4) - Teams are averaging 140 rushing yards and nine rushing first downs against the Eagles in the past four games. They can't run the ball and they can't stop the run. That's why they're an average team.
14. Carolina (4-3) - Lack of depth and no linebackers is killing Carolina. The front four is getting worn out because they have to do everything - without much rest. The proof: in the second halves against Cincinnati and Dallas the Panthers have been outscored 35-0 and outgained 474-169.
15. Cincinnati (4-3) - In Cincinnati's four wins, Rudi Johnson averages 24.8 carries and 97.3 yards. In their three losses he's averaging just 14 totes and 54 yards. Further, the Bengals forced 11 takeaways through their first three games but just three in their last four. If you take care of the ball against them Cincy is very beatable.
16. Seattle (4-3) - In four games without Shaun Alexander, Seattle has rushed for 302 yards. At 75 yards per game the Seahawks would have the 31st-ranked rushing offense.
17. Minnesota (4-3) - Inside linebacker Napoleon Harris dislocated his wrist and DT Kevin Williams suffered a high ankle sprain. I'll be very surprised if they start on Sunday in San Francisco, where the Vikings are just 1-5 ATS.
18. St. Louis (4-3) - That looked like the Rams I know on Sunday - sloppy. Defensively, they were able to get by on scheme for the first few weeks. But now their lack of talent and ferocity is rearing its ugly head.
19. Pittsburgh (2-5) - In 1998, defending champ Denver missed the playoffs. In 2002, defending champ Tampa Bay missed the playoffs. It's a four-year trend. Casey Hampton is sorely missed and center Jeff Hartings is likely out against Denver.
20. New York Jets (4-4) - It's bad enough that the official blew that call (and I think the only person who didn't see that was color man Tim Ryan) on Chris Baker's catch. But now the Jets have two weeks to stew over the call that probably cost them a playoff spot.
21. Washington (2-5) - The Redskins got Shawn Springs back, which is huge, but linebacker Lemar Marshall is still 50-50 for this Sunday. Mark Brunell, Santana Moss and Antwan Randle El all sat out of practice earlier this week.
22. Tampa Bay (2-5) - At one point through the second and third quarter against New York, Tampa Bay threw on 24-of-25 plays. Discounting two defensive TD's against Philadelphia the Bucs are averaging 10.6 points per game.
23. Green Bay (3-4) - Backup running back Vernand Morency and starting fullback Brandon Miree are both out against Buffalo. Green Bay is 1-4-1 ATS against Buffalo, including 0-3 in Orchard Park.
24. Buffalo (2-5) - Buffalo is shuffling its o-line again. Jason Peters will start at left tackle and Mike Gandy will move in to left guard. Seventh-round rookie Terrence Pennington will start at right tackle. Buffalo is 23rd in rushing, 29th in passing and 30th in sacks per pass. They face the Packers, who have the second-most sacks in the NFL.
25. Cleveland (2-5) - More injury woes along the Browns o-line. Left guard Joe Andruzzi suffered a bone bruise against New York and won't be 100 percent - if he even plays - against San Diego.
26. Tennessee (2-5) - Vince Young was one of three quarterbacks that earned a victory without throwing for more than 100 yards last week. The Titans are 11-5 ATS against the Jaguars.
27. Houston (2-5) - David Carr has completed 72 percent of the passes that he's thrown to Andre Johnson and Eric Moulds. He is still terribly inconsistent and it's become perfectly clear that he'll never be the answer in Houston.
28. Detroit (1-6) - The Lions are getting Ross Verba and Rex Tucker back this week on the o-line. They also released Az-Zahir Hakim and have benched Boss Bailey.
29. San Francisco (2-5) - In 23 games of the Mike Nolan Era the 49ers have never held an opponent to single digits. San Fran punter Andy Lee and the 49ers coverage are surrendering 20.2 yards per punt return.
30. Oakland (2-5) - Oakland is rushing for more yards than Pittsburgh, Indianapolis, Minnesota, Chicago, Baltimore, St. Louis, New Orleans, Cincinnati and Carolina. Also, who knew that the Raiders had the league's No. 8 defense?
31. Arizona (1-7) - Stat from CNNSI.com: Denny Green is 17-39 in his last 56 games as a head coach. Rich Kotite was 15-41 in his last 56 games as a head coach.
32. Miami (1-6) - Did anyone happen to see Andy Rooney's rambling, babbling monologue at the end of "60 Minutes"? Wow. That was amazing. He just blathered on for five minutes about how he likes street names and city names, and how there's some city names that repeat themselves in different states. He seriously sounded like some old homeless guy sitting in front of a K-Mart rambling to his invisible friend.
Questions or comments for Robert? E-mail him at firstname.lastname@example.org or check out his Insider Page here.