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Power Rankings (week 1)

September 09, 2009 by Steel Haven

Rnk LY* Team 2008
1. 4. Pittsburgh Steelers 12-4 Championship roster returns virtually intact with major improvements on special teams (specifically Sepulveda and Logan). Complacency is their biggest enemy, especially considering the easy schedule.
2. 6. New England Patriots 11-5 Will the heartless trade of Seymour finally cause Belichick to lose some of his veteran players? How will losing him, Vrabel, Bruschi and Harrison affect the defense on and off the field?
3. 2. New York Giants 12-4 Best lines in the NFL should keep them in the hunt. Need a receiver to step up.
4. 16. San Diego Chargers 8-8 Have the talent. Face no competition in their division. Even Turner should have difficulty screwing this up.
5. 3. Indianapolis Colts 12-4 Offense shouldn't be affected by switch from Dungy to Caldwell as long as Manning is on the field.
6. 10. Minnesota Vikings 10-6 Does Favre have anything left? Remember he did go to the NFC Championship game in 2007 and had the Jets at 9-3 last season before an elbow injury. Anything has to be better than Rosenfels and/or Jackson.
7. 13. Chicago Bears 9-7 Upgrade from Orton to Cutler takes pressure off Forte and the defense.
8. 8. Baltimore Ravens 11-5 Failure to find Flacco more weapons in the passing offense could come back to haunt them.
9. 15. New Orleans Saints 8-8 Turn to Williams to improve the defense which didn't turn out so well for the Jaguars last season.
10. 12. Philadelphia Eagles 9-6-1 Let the Vick experement commence. OK, let it commence in week 3 after his suspension is officially rescinded.
11. 1. Tennessee Titans 13-3 How much will the loss of Haynesworth hurt?
12. 7. Atlanta Falcons 11-5 Any step back should be minor unless Ryan suffers a horrendous sophomore slump.
13. 11. Dallas Cowboys 9-7 Will releasing TO be addition by subtraction?
14. 18. Arizona Cardinals 9-7 Tough team to read. Miracle run in the playoffs obscured a horrible last month of the regular season. Likely to continue to benefit from horrendous divisional foes.
15. 5. Carolina Panthers 12-4 Have a tendency to alternate between good and bad years. Could be behind the 8 ball early due to a schedule that starts with Philadelphia and trips to Atlanta and Dallas.
16. 23. Houston Texans 8-8 Seem primed for a breakout after back-to-back .500 seasons.
17. 25. Green Bay Packers 6-10 Explosive offense needs the defense to adapt quickly to Capers' 3-4.
18. 9. Miami Dolphins 11-5 Tougher schedule will make last year difficult to repeat.
19. 26. Cincinnati Bengals 4-11-1 A different team with a healthy Palmer.
20. 20. Washington Redskins 8-8 Need Campbell to take a step forward after trying to replace him all offseason.
21. 24. Jacksonville Jaguars 5-11 Turn to a pair of rookie tackles after the complete collapse of the offensive line last season. Really need Garrard to do a better job of protecting the ball.
22. 19. New York Jets 9-7 Dirty Sanchez begins his quest to be the new Namath.
23. 27. Seattle Seahawks 4-12 Hoping the offense can be jump started by the return of Hasselbeck and addition of Houshmanzadeh.
24. 21. San Fransisco 49ers 7-9 Crabtree holdout has cast a pall over their season.
25. 28. Oakland Raiders 5-11 Crazy Al's trade of a 2011 first rounder for the aging Seymour actually helps in the short term despite seeming insane in the long term. Assuming Seymour reports.
26. 22. Buffalo Bills 7-9 Fired their offensive coordinator and waived their expected starting LT a week before the start of the season.
27. 14. Tampa Bay Buccaneers 9-7 Another team that fired their offensive coordinator in the preseason reportedly because Jagodzinski wasn't on board with starting Leftwich.
28. 29. Cleveland Browns 4-12 Mangini seemed to alienate everyone among the fans, press and team since taking over. Actually that maybe not a bad thing for a franchise that has been in the doldrums since returning to the NFL.
29. 30. Kansas City Chiefs 2-14 A third franchise that replaced a coordinator in preseason. Has that ever happened once before? At least head man Haley made his reputation on the offensive side of the ball unlike Morris and Jauron.
30. 31. St. Louis Rams 2-14 Need to keep Bulger and Jackson healthy which won't be easy given the state of the offensive line.
31. 17. Denver Broncos 8-8 Starting over after completely dismantling the franchise. The 3 game losing streak to end the season that caused them to blow their 3 game lead in the division set in motion an almost unbelievable chain of events.
32. 32. Detriot Lions 0-16 Turn to a first time head coach and rookie QB. It worked for the Falcons and Ravens last year.

*Last year's final ranking
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