12th Man's Power Poll

Fan columnist Richard Garrett is back with his 12th Man's Power Poll as we get ready for week three action. His unique grading system leads to interesting discussion in our fan forum, and his commentary always provides some laughs. Enjoy this week's Power Poll...

12th Man's Power Poll is different from any of your national power rankings. I don't look at records, or opponents, or injuries or any personal bias I might have. I take 7 criteria on the offense and 7 on the defense and give each team a numerical grade. I have posted those numerical grades this week, (Offense, Defense). A team with a grade of 50 would be average in the NFL over the past 10 years. So, above 50 is better than average, below 50 is worse than average. I add the two together to get to the ranking. With only two games to look at, the rankings will be a little, well maybe a lot, skewed. I expect things to start shaping up after Week 4.

This week the Colts vaulted to the top of the offensive rankings. Excellent red zone efficiency, third down conversions and possible points really showed a great offense. We will find out Sunday just how good the offense is as the Colts go up against the Jags top 5 defense. 

The Baltimore Jailbirds were again the best of the Defenses. They say defense wins championships, and right now the top 5 teams are also the top 5 defenses. Interesting, no? The Colts defense ranks 31st, with only the Texans behind them. I'm concerned.

Here are two teams I believe are misplaced: the Saints are ranked too high and the Giants are ranked too low. But watch this poll, it will find you some gems.

Week 2 Power Poll Results
(Offense grade/defense grade)

1. San Diego Chargers (67.2, 70.0): Strong showing on both sides of the ball keep the Chargers at the top. I remember saying last year that the Chargers were the best team in the NFL not to make the playoffs.

2. Baltimore Jailbirds (50.0, 85.9):  Best defensive performance in the NFL is making up for a very average offense.

3. Chicago Bears (54.5, 67.7):  Uh-Oh! Now the Bears have an offense too? I predicted a Colts/Bears Super Bowl last year. No reason it can't happen this year.

4. Atlanta Falcons (51.1, 70.5):  A running QB works well in the College ranks. But somebody is going to slobber-knock Michael Vick one of these days. Then what are the Falcons going to do for offense?

5. YeeHaw Junction Jaguars (48.2, 70.6):  The Jags looked .. well awesome against the Steelers on Monday night. We'll know a lot more about the Jags and the Colts by Sunday night.

6. Philadelphia Iggles (58.8, 55.5):  A letdown like they had against the Giants last week could haunt them the rest of the season.

7. Cincy Bengals (57.8, 55.1):  The Bengals got pretty banged up against a pretty docile Browns team. To say that 85, Chad Jackson, got JACKED-UP is an understatement. We will learn a lot about the Steelers this week.

8. Seattle Ospreys (47.7, 61.5):  They are ranked pretty high but haven't shown a lot. Defense is keeping this team going. The Giants will test their resolve this week.

9. New England PatriOTTs (55.0, 53.8):  It is a real shame the OTTs don't have any real competition in their division. Just the fact that Buffalo should have beat them and the Jest had a huge comeback last week speaks volumes about the OTTs. Hopefully the Broncos will give them a run. 

10. New Orleans Saints (51.4, 53.4): I stated last year that the Saints would never play a game in New Orleans again. I was Wrrrrrr, Wrrrrrr....mistaken. Now watch this game REAL close. The NFL probably wants the Saints to win this one. Let's see if it happens.

11. Minnesota Vikes (51.4, 53.2): Nice come-from-behind victory against the Panthers last week. When life gives you lemons, have your kicker throw a TD pass. Interesting that the kicker has thrown as many TD passes as the QB. So, do Bears eat Vikings? I say yes.

12. Dal-lass Cowboys (49.6, 54.7): Amazing how much better a team looks when they play a bad team. Bill Parcells always says, "You are what you are." Well Bill, You ARE NOT a playoff team right now.

13. Indianapolis Colts (67.5, 36.4):  The defense looks as bad as the offense looks good. Opposite ends of the spectrum. The defense MUST step up this weekend against the Jags or they may not have what it takes to get to the playoffs.

14. Phoenix Cardinals (55.61, 48.0):  This team is better than they showed last week. Kurt Warner better call back to Iowa and see if his old bag-boy job at the grocery store is open. Make way for the Matt Leinart, the QB of the future.

15. Denver Broncos (42.2, 61.3): Plummer has two games to get the offense turned around. Don't be surprised to see a former Vanderbilt Commodore QB start against the Raiders. I think you are going to see a game of struggling teams when they play the OTTs on Sunday.

16. Saint Louie Rams (44.6, 58.2): It's tough when a team like the 9ers have your number. 

17. New Yawk Giants (60.6, 42.0):  Impressive showing against the Iggles. I'm glad they saved that for a division foe and not the Colts. Great matchup with the Ospreys this week. 

18. Buffalo Bills (45.9, 53.2):  These guys have what it takes to get better. They will need a little luck to get past the OTTs for the division this year.

19. New Yawk Jest (50.3, 48.4): Nice little comeback against the OTTs last week. They didn't win, but showed some spunk. Laveranues Coles has the makings for a monster year. 

20. Former Champion Steelers (41.3, 56.2):  Former is the key word here. Their offense is anemic and something must be done or the Steelers can have a Rothlgater at Ben's house to get together and watch the Super Bowl on TV in February.

21. Green Bay Packers (43.3, 53.0):  Brett Favre had a Brett Favre day. You know, he threw the ball like Brett Favre, but his receivers didn't catch like Brett Favre receivers. But then, BOOM, Brett Favre throws a Brett Favre interception -- and I wonder why Brett Favre would do that? Freakin' Madden.

22. Minami Dol-fins (45.1, 50.4): Backup QB Joey Harrington better loosen up those piano-playing fingers. He's fixing to get a chance to play. Culpepper looks, well, like he just stepped off a boat on Lake Minnitonka. 

23. Kan-SAS City Chefs (39.3, 54.8):  I don't know what to say about this disaster except "RUN LARRY RUN."

24. SAN FRAN 9ers (48.91, 43.2):  These guys have made two impressive showings. I think they have put down their shovels and are trying to crawl off the bottom of the barrel.

25. Carolina Panthers (41.6, 48.0):  Little slip in the polls this week. That is what happens when you are leading late in the game and try some funky special teams throw back that gives your opponent opportunity.

26. Cleveland Brownies (44.3, 43.2): Showed a little spunk last week against a very good Bengals team. They will be playing for pride against the HATED Art Modell family this week.

27. Washington Redskins (42.7, 41.5):  Joe Gibbs is not used to this much adversity. He has always produced winners, but I think there is an owner holding this team back.

28. Detroit Lions (36.3, 46.0): Hey Roy Williams, JUST SHUT UP! Your offense is so bad the local Community College wants a scrimmage. Let's see how they fare against a not-so-good team.

29. Houston Texicans (50.6, 31.6): Worst defense in the NFL. Just want to say that Texan Fans are Gr8 and I hope to get down to Houston someday for a reciprocal tailgate.

30. Tennessee Titans (41.2, 38.6):  They got rid of Billy Volek, now they don't even have a real QB on the roster. Sad state of affairs down in Nashville.

31. Tampa Bay Bucs (24.19, 50.6):  Hey Jon Gruden, those two #1 draft choices the Bucs gave up to get you is looking like a pretty high price right now.

32. Oakland Raiders(18.2, 47.1):  Suckatility to infinity. Oh yeah, that's why they fired Art Shell last time.


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