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10-05-2004, 03:36 PM
Week 5 NFL Power Rankings
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FAN POLL: Make your vote count
The top spots in the poll look familiar, but you might be surprised by a new entry in the top five the Falcons, who are off to a 4-0 start and coming off an impressive win at Carolina. The team is undefeated, and QB Michael Vick still is adjusting to a new offense. As for those Panthers, they take a big tumble, as does another popular preseason playoff pick the Packers.

ON THE RISE: The Texans and Rams, both 2-2, made the biggest jumps this week seven spots each, while the Falcons and Giants both leaped six positions ... with Atlanta breaking into the top five.

FALLING FAST: Without Brett Favre, the Packers have been exposed and fell 11 spots from 9th to 20th. Carolina also dropped eight spots down to 14th after losing to Atlanta at home.

NOTE: Rankings are updated by Tuesday midday every week.

Rk Team Last Week Rising/Falling High/Low Comment
1. Patriots (3-0) 1st SAME 1st/1st The Patriots keep the top spot because they are the defending champs, their quarterback never wavers under fire, RB Corey Dillon balances the offense and they are headed for an NFL-record 19 consecutive wins.
2. Eagles (4-0) 2nd SAME 2nd/3rd Terrell Owens will have some amazing abs by the end of the season if he keeps doing sit-ups after every touchdown. The defense's pass rush might be the best in the NFL. McNabb has 14 touchdown passes and just four interceptions in his last seven games.
3. Seahawks (3-0) 3rd SAME 3rd/8th The Seahawks might have the firepower to beat the Eagles in the playoffs if the game is in Seattle. The defense has allowed only 13 points in its first three games; when you have RB Shaun Alexander, anything under 10 points is almost a lock for victory. Trouble will brew though if team officials don't get some of their star players under contract soon..
4. Colts (3-1) 4th SAME 4th/5th The Colts had the toughest 4-game block to open the season (NE, TEN, GB, JAX). The Colts passed a big test against the Jaguars' defense last week. For all the injuries and lack of talent, this group plays hard and does just enough to give QB Peyton Manning a chance. With the season-opening loss to the Pats, this team can't afford another loss if it is to secure home-field advantage.
5. Falcons (4-0) 11th

(+6) 5th/20th Some would argue that this is too high for the Falcons, but they're 4-0 with two road wins and they have an impressive running game, a defense that can create pressure and Vick. Oh, and they beat the defending NFC champions on the road in Week 4.
6. Vikings (2-1) 5th

(-1) 5th/13th The Vikings are coming off an open week, which means Daunte Culpepper and Randy Moss will be well-rested for the Texans this week.
7. Jets (3-0) 8th

(+1) 7th/18th If QB Chad Pennington stays healthy, the Jets will be hard to beat. But the Jets have not faced a team with a winning record; the real challenge will be in Week 7 against New England.
8. Cowboys (2-1) 13th

(+5) 8th/15th Coach Bill Parcells proves coaching is a great competitive advantage in the NFL. The Cowboys, coming off a bye, have a big game against the Giants this week.
9. Broncos (3-1) 12th

(+3) 9th/14th QB Jake Plummer is underrated in terms of his ability to win games, and the Broncos are happy to have him. The defense is playing well, but Denver must get the running game going or fall out of the top 10.
10. Ravens (2-2) 7th

(-3) 7th/12th It's hard to win a Super Bowl without a great quarterback, but Baltimore has done it before. The defense is capable of stopping most offenses, and most teams can't stop Jamal Lewis.
11. Jaguars (3-1) 10th

(-1) 10th/22nd Fourth-quarter comebacks are rare, and the team must not get in a mode of living off them. It caught up to the Jaguars last week. Two road wins do count for something, but don't expect the Jaguars to win the AFC South.
12. Steelers (3-1) 15th

(+3) 12th/24th Rookie Ben Roethlisberger might not relinquish the QB duties when Tommy Maddox gets healthy. The running game clearly has been re-established with Duce Staley, and the defense has its swagger back.
13. Giants (3-1) 19th

(+6) 13th/27th Rules are about instilling discipline in a team, and tough love works. The Giants players are finally learning that lesson. The team is playing with more discipline and heart. Tiki Barber is an underrated playmaker and already has three 100-yard games. If the Giants beat the teams they are supposed to beat, that could add up to nine wins.
14. Panthers (1-2) 6th

(-8) 2nd/14th Panthers coaches have forgotten what made them a Super Bowl team last year a power running game and a defensive line that harasses quarterbacks. The Panthers are throwing too many passes, the offensive line is shaky and the front four couldn't catch nemesis Michael Vick once last week.
15. Rams (2-2) 22nd

(+7) 7th/22nd This is a hot-and-cold team. The more Marshall Faulk and Steven Jackson carry the ball, the better the questionable Rams defense looks. Coach Mike Martz must check his ego and call more running plays.
16. Lions (2-1) 20th

(+4) 16th/28th The Lions had a Week 4 bye, giving the team extra time to prepare for Vick and the aggressive Falcons defense. The Falcons game is a big test. QB Joey Harrington is improving, and coach Steve Mariucci has his men believing they can win.
17. Titans (1-3) 16th

(-1) 4th/17th QB Steve McNair didn't play Sunday, and the Titans lost. Without McNair, they will continue to drop. Chris Brown finally was held under 100 yards rushing, and the defense struggled to compensate for all the injuries and players lost because of salary cap woes.
18. Redskins (1-3) 14th

(-4) 14th/18th After winning their first game under Joe Gibbs, the Redskins have lost three in a row. Clinton Portis must learn to protect the ball, or this team will continue to slide down the Power Poll.
19. Raiders (2-2) 17th

(-2) 17th/22nd Kerry Collins threw three interceptions in his first start. Still, coach Norv Turner is taking this team to a younger, faster place and the victories will start to pile up soon. The offensive line played well Sunday, and the Raiders could be well positioned to take advantage of Kansas City's woes and be the second playoff team (with Denver) from the AFC West.
20. Packers (1-3) 9th

(-11) 8th/20th The Packers are 1-3 but still rank higher than four two-win teams in the Power Poll. Would you take Cleveland, New Orleans, Houston or San Diego to beat the Packers? No way. Until Brett Favre retires, the Packers are capable of beating just about any team.
21. Texans (2-2) 28th

(+7) 21st/30th QB David Carr has a nice new haircut, now that the team has won back-to-back games. Carr is developing nice chemistry with WR Andre Johnson. The defense was impressive Sunday, forcing five Raiders turnovers. It's an up-and-down ride for the Texans, but right now it's up.
22. Chiefs (1-3) 21st

(-1) 5th/22nd The win over Baltimore proves this team is better than its 1-3 record. Can the defense play well enough to make offensive weapons Priest Holmes, Tony Gonzalez, Trent Green and Dante Hall matter?
23. Browns (2-2) 25th

(+2) 23rd/26th RB Lee Suggs does make a difference. On Sunday, the Browns won their second game, QB Jeff Garcia was adequate and the team finally played hard.
24. Saints (2-2) 18th

(-6) 16th/24th This team is not to be trusted. The Saints can beat a Top 10 team one week and lose to a bottom feeder the next. Without RB Deuce McAllister, the Saints will struggle. The defense did get a dramatic upgrade with the trade for CB Mike McKenzie.
25. Bengals (1-3) 23rd

(-2) 13th/25th It's not QB Carson Palmer's fault. The offensive line can't protect him, the defense can't stop anyone and the coaches are asking a first-year QB to throw the most passes in the NFL. This formula won't work.
26. Chargers (2-2) 27th

(+1) 25th/32nd Don't be fooled by the 2-2 record this team is going nowhere. And it could get worse before it gets better. Why invest time in QB Drew Brees when he will not be the QB next season? If Brees continues to play, the team will struggle again next year because Philip Rivers will have no experience.
27. Bears (1-3) 24th

(-3) 24th/29th There are too many injuries but lots of respect for coach Lovie Smith. Next year the Bears will compete for a playoff spot, but this year it's scratch-and-claw every week.
28. Cardinals (1-3) 32nd

(+4) 28th/32nd This team has little talent but fights hard. The Cardinals might sneak up on four or five teams this season. The defense has been impressive in back-to-back weeks, and Emmitt Smith still can play, too.
29. Bucs (0-4) 29th SAME 21st/29th The defense is good most weeks, but the offense lacks speed, has a questionable offensive line and a stationary QB.
30. Bills (0-3) 26th

(-4) 23rd/30th If the offensive line can't protect QB Drew Bledsoe, things will be ugly. If rookie J.P. Losman wasn't hurt, he might get the start this week.
31. Dolphins (0-4) 30th

(-1) 17th/31st Ricky Williams destroyed this team, which now is in a freefall. The pressure is mounting. There is not enough talent to win.
32. 49ers (0-4) 31st

(-1) 30th/32nd It's not fair to judge Dennis Erickson with the 49ers' talent. The 49ers have a bunch of role guys with only two elite players RB Kevan Barlow and OLB Julian Peterson.

10-05-2004, 03:39 PM
If we're not a true 1-3 team then why rank us as one?

KC Jones
10-05-2004, 03:42 PM
Yet another poll we move down in after mauling the Ravens who are ranked quite a ways above us.

Even if you thought the win over the Ravens was more of a fluke than the 0-3 start, you should still move up or stay the same after beating an opponent ranked above you.

kc rush
10-05-2004, 03:43 PM
So we win a game and move down in the rankings?

Makes sense to me.

KC Jones
10-05-2004, 03:45 PM
It's hard to win a Super Bowl without a great quarterback, but Baltimore has done it before. The defense is capable of stopping most offenses, and most teams can't stop Jamal Lewis.

...except for the 22nd ranked Chiefs which shut down Jamal and dominated the Ravens defense.


10-05-2004, 04:34 PM
We win a game on the road against a team they have highly ranked, they praise us for it and say we're clearly better than our 1-3 record, and they move us DOWN a spot? That's retarded.