Every Monday night, I compile the PFT Power Rankings, a more-cumbersome-than-it-seems process. (Please, pity me.) Last night, I commenced the process while sitting between Damon Hack of SI and Alex Marvez of FOX in the press box at the New Meadowland Stadium. (One is a perfect gentleman. The other is a long-haired troublemaker who was watching pro wrestling via his Slingbox device.)
Coupled with the third quarter spent in the booth with Paul Allen and Pete Bercich of the Vikings Radio Network, where I was able to witness P.A.’s Christmas-morning glee upon witnessing the first touchdown of the second Randy Moss stint, I only partially completed the Power Rankings last night.
So here they are, better never than late. Or something.
New York Jets (No. 1 last week; 4-1): When a clumsily-built lead begins to collapse, plenty of teams fold. The Jets didn’t.
Baltimore Ravens (No. 2; 4-1): The offense finally is waking up, which could result in the Ravens putting a sleeper hold on the rest of the AFC.
3. Pittsburgh Steelers (No. 3; 3-1): The entire Steelers defense will be disciplined under the Personal Conduct Policy after they get finished with Browns quarterback Colt McCoy.
4. Atlanta Falcons (No. 4; 4-1): At a time when the NFC has no clearly dominant team, the Falcons are the closest approximation.
New England Patriots
(No. 8; 3-1): So they traded away supposed model citizen and stellar performer Randy Moss and they traded for a washed-up guy who pissed and moaned his way out of town? Sounds about right.
6. Indianapolis Colts (No. 9; 3-2): They still look a lot different from the Colts of 2009, but so do most teams.
New Orleans Saints (No. 5; 3-2): Drew Brees said last week that the Saints could be undefeated. He failed to point out that they also could be 0-5.
Chicago Bears (No. 12; 4-1): Reality eventually will catch up with this team. But there’s a good chance it won’t happen until the middle of January.
Tennessee Titans (No. 11; 3-2): If the team that beat the Cowboys
shows up more than once per month, the Titans will win the division.
Green Bay Packers (No. 6; 3-2): If the Packers had traded for Marshawn Lynch, he’d probably be injured, too.
York Giants (No. 16; 3-2): Some teams get better as the season
progresses. Some teams get a lot
better as the season progress.
Kansas City Chiefs (No. 10; 3-1): Dwayne Bowe can’t figure out why no one will let him hold their baby.
Houston Texans (No. 7; 3-2): Take away that emotional Week One win
over the Colts, and this team is as mediocre as it ever has been.
Washington Redskins (No. 19; 3-2): See Giants.
Philadelphia Eagles (No. 20; 3-2): If Kevin Kolb leads the Eagles to victory on Sunday against the Falcons, coach Andy Reid may have to once again declare that Mike Vick is still the starter. And we’ll all believe him.
Miami Dolphins (No. 15; 2-2): The best part about a bye week? They were guaranteed not to lose another home game to an AFC East rival.
Jacksonville Jaguars (No. 22; 3-2): Nothing lights a fire under a crappy quarterback better than having a not-quite-as-crappy quarterback looking over his shoulder.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers (No. 24; 3-1): Beat the Saints, and we’ll move this team into the top 10.
19. Minnesota Vikings
(No. 13; 1-3): Would this team be 1-3 if Tarvaris Jackson had been the starter since Week One?
20. Dallas Cowboys (No. 14; 1-3): Cue the “Jerry Jones has never fired a coach during the season” crowd, who seem to think that means he never under any circumstances would fire a coach during the season. (Under that logic, Jones also will live forever.)
Arizona Cardinals (No. 27; 3-2): Sorry, but stealing one from the Saints doesn’t excuse two of the ugliest performances we’ve ever seen.
22. Denver Broncos (No. 23; 2-3): The Broncos are the ultimate up-and-down team, which means that they’re very much alive in the AFC West.
23. St. Louis Rams (No. 17; 2-3): Before any Rams fans complain about the drop to No. 22, be glad it wasn’t farther after that 44-6 loss to the Lions.
Seattle Seahawks (No. 25; 2-2): Marshawn Lynch celebrated his arrival in Seattle by taking the owner’s plane for a joyride.
San Diego Chargers (No. 18; 2-3): After Sunday’s performance against the Raiders, San Diego fired Miami’s special-teams coordinator.
Cincinnati Bengals (No. 21; 2-3): Why do we have a feeling that Jordan Palmer won’t be the replacement for his brother Carson at quarterback in 2011?
Oakland Raiders (No. 28; 2-3): If the Raiders aren’t careful, their blackout streak could be in jeopardy.
28. Detroit Lions (No. 30; 1-4): The Lions can spend the week enjoying a rare one-game winning streak.
Cleveland Browns (No. 26; 1-4): Why not just line up Josh Cribbs under
center on every snap? (It wouldn’t be a bad idea even after Seneca
Wallace and Jake Delhomme are healthy again.)
San Francisco 49ers (No. 29; 0-5): If Jed York is going to make reckless predictions, why not guarantee a Super Bowl win, too?
Carolina Panthers (No. 31; 0-5): When the guy who’ll be the starting quarterback for the first game after the bye learns of his assignment, he’ll likely say, “Do I have to?”
Buffalo Bills (No. 32; 0-5): So will the Bills pick another Stanford quarterback with the first pick in the draft?
UPDATE: I flipped Giants and Texans. Giants fans can stop sending me e-mails and Twitter messages now. Please?