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Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Sportaholic NFL Power Rankings Week 13

The big showdown between the Pats and Jets turned out to be a bust. New England just controlled the game from the start. The buildup for this game was gargantuan as both teams sported a 9-2 record and were thought to be the class of the league. Rex Ryan made cocky comments and shared his philosophies to anyone who would listen. Unfortunately for him the Patriots were not into the hype, they were just into the game. The rhythm and timing of their offense with Tom Terrific was just too much for the Jets to handle. Brady just dissected what was supposed to be one of, if not the best secondary in the league. He torched the Jets to the tune of 21 of 29 for 326 yards, with four touchdowns to four different receivers, and no interceptions. Brady completed passes to eight different receivers, and has thrown 228 consecutive passes since being intercepted, a New England record. He hasn’t thrown a pick in seven consecutive games and now has at least one touchdown pass in all 12 of New England's games. One more nugget on Brady, he just set an NFL record by winning his 26th straight home game.

As for the Jets they looked overmatched, outwitted and shell-shocked. They never seemed to have much of a flow to their offense. Mark Sanchez didn’t get it done and had to be looking at Brady with envy. He finished 17/33 for 164 with no touchdowns and threw three picks in the second half. The big bad Jets with all their trash talking were suppose to come in to Boston and serve up the Pats. I can recall most people picking the Jets because of their brash style and smack talking but I had a feeling something like this would happen. They have been playing with fire the last few weeks pulling out victories over teams they should just walked over. This may be the best thing for New York however as they now know their place in the pecking order of the AFC. The Pats now have the upper hand in the division and that could mean a number one seed (with two home games) or the wild card position that would require going on the road in the playoffs.

The Patriots resounding victory leaves no question in my mind who is number 1 and with that, time to unveil the rankings.

1. New England Patriots (10-2) – The Pats have crushed all comers in their last four games and did it against some pretty formidable teams. They hung at least 31 on each team as well in that span. The list you ask? 39 points at Pittsburgh, 31 at home against the Colts, 45 on the Lions on Thanksgiving and another 45 on this past Monday nigh on the overrated Jets. So much for needing Randy Moss huh? New England this season has now beaten Baltimore, San Diego, Pittsburgh, Indianapolis and now the Jets. Should there be any debate who is number one now?

2. Atlanta Falcons (10-2) – Don’t look now but the dirty birds have now won six in a row after their comeback win over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Matty Ice was just Matt Ryan at the beginning of the game as he threw two picks (Atlanta’s first turnovers in five games). Ryan and the Falcons showed great resiliency as they overcame his early mistakes and came back from a 10-point deficit. The more I see from this team, the more I start to believe.

3. Pittsburgh Steelers (9-3) – One of my favorite lines of all time came from ESPN’s Scott Van Pelt. He said Troy Polamalu play likes his hair is on fire! That is the truest way to try to comprehend how this man plays the game. The contest against them and the Ravens was just man football. Big Ben was busted up by the 4th play of the game as hits were being delivered from both sides. These teams play identical to one another but it was Polamalu’s big play that saved the Steelers. The win gives Pittsburgh the lead in the division and an inside track to a playoff bye.

4. Chicago Bears (9-3) – How does Jay Cutler do it with that porous offensive line? “Cut Dog” has a 77-percent passer with six touchdowns and no interceptions over his last three games as Chicago’s offense who looked to jell. The defense will always keep them in games and all Cutler has to do is efficient. Big game next week against the New England. We will see what the Bears are made of.

5. New Orleans Saints (9-3) - It may be too late for them to catch the hot Falcons but that was a gusty win against a desperate Bungals, I mean Bengals team. I was tweeting during the game and Deion Sanders tweet summed it up for the Bengals. He tweeted “The Bengals are like a good sparring partner in boxing. They will mix it up with you, get bloody, and fight till the end but lose by knockout. Great play to get the Bengals off-sides by Drew Brees. The Saints have a tough slate of games to end the season with St. Louis, at Baltimore, at Atlanta, Tampa Bay and this is why I don’t think they will be able to catch Atlanta.

Other News and Notables from around the league:

McDaniels axed in Denver: Not even a week after I wrote that McD was in trouble after his mini spygate episode, he was let go by the Broncos. McDaniels was 13-17 overall with Denver and was 5-17 after getting off to that hot 6-0 start last year. McDaniels exit comes as a surprise as he was just given a vote of confidence by owner Pat Bowlen last week. He becomes the third coach fired this year, joining the like of Wade “Aw Shucks” Phillips and Brad “Chilly” Childress. He will be replaced by Eric Studesville, the RB coach and former RB coach in Buffalo as well. The worst thing about this story is the way the Broncos announced his firing, via Twitter. You would think they would have more class than that. Bowlen will now be paying three coaches as he is still paying Mike Shanahan, McDaniels now and a new Head Coach in 2011. The firing also raises the question about Tim Tebow’s future.

MJD for MVP?: A lot buzz is being made for the Jaguars running back after his sensational performance against the Titans. The pint sized RB assaulted Tennessee for 186 yards and has five straight 100-yard games. His team sits alone atop of the AFC south and they control their own playoff destiny. He has a total of 1,177 yards so far, good for second in the league, only trailing Arian Foster of Houston who has 1,230 yards. He may be a long shot though as he plays in a small market in Jacksonville and doesn’t get the publicity he deserves. Also going against him is the fact that the MVP usually goes to a QB, as the last time a running back won was back in 2006 (Ladainian Tomlinson). If he keeps producing and the Jags keep winning though, he may have a chance.

Battered Brett: As much as some people can’t stand Favre, you have to feel a little sorry for him. He has created this iron man image and is just scratching and clawing his way to start number 300. He was creamed on the first play of the game against the Buffalo Bills and couldn’t return but now Coach Leslie Frazier is saying he expects him to start this week. Someone has to be the voice of reason here. I’m beginning to think Favre is on a mission to die on the field. He loves the game so much why not just be buried on the field with his shoulders pad and helmet on? The man is tough as nails and he proves that every week. He has every conceivable record for QBs, so why does he continue to jeopardize his well-being after football for a season that is going no where? I just don’t understand but to each their own. I hope he makes it to 300 but not at the expense of his health. Brett you will have a life after football but for some reason I don’t think you care about that.

Haynesworth suspended for last four games: The team says in a press release Tuesday that Haynesworth was punished for “conduct detrimental to the club” and that he was told of the suspension by general manager Bruce Allen.

Coach Mike Shanahan says in a statement that Haynesworth “repeatedly refused to cooperate with our coaching staff in a variety of ways over an extended period of time.”

This definitely sounds like the end in Big Al in D.C.


  1. Yeah baby, love for the Dirty Birds. Hell Yeah. How about them making me want to kick my tv in this Sunday and throw the wife out the door and turn the kids movie on in their room. But alls well ends well.

    Carolina this week. Trap game? Play week 2 week.

  2. Yeah I can't do anything else but respect them since they keep winning. Tampa Bay is a sneaky good team and most people don't know that, so yeah I they were getting under your skin. If your guys don't beat the Panthers by 21 I'm dropping them out the rankings!! I'm just kidding but they should have no problem with them. Thanks for dropping by man.