Welcome back for another round of Power Ranking Ramblings! The rankings that we crank out every week are identical in order to the nonsensical ones that ESPN spews out every week. This is partly because creating power rankings from scratch is a painstakingly lengthy process and Kevin gave me the death glare when I suggested that we come up with our own. However, the main reason we do it that way is because ESPN’s rankings are… well, they are just awful. You will seldom come across something as overly biased and ill-conceived as ESPN’s opinion on who the best teams in the league are. And it’s a lot of fun to call them out on this, so the point of our rankings is to rip on ESPN’s version as much as possible.
Or at least that’s how it started. I don’t know if you’ve noticed or not, but it’s been a fairly abysmal year for the NFL. Bad officiating, bad games and most importantly, bad teams. There are three squads in each conference who have a legitimate shot at winning the Super Bowl, and after that it’s a whole bunch of meh. So while making fun of the Worldwide Leader in Sports and its rampant stupidity is always a good time, we can scarcely allow the league’s overall mediocrity to skid by unscathed.
As usual, in case you want to confirm that we are in no way fabricating these rankings just to make ESPN look bad, you can take a look at theirs first…
…but only if you come back and read ours. We’re starving writers, man. We need as many hits as we can get!
- Dallas Cowboys, 10-1 (Last ranked 1) Jesse – This is just a reminder that ESPN’s rankings are all about who would win in head-to-head matchups, which means the Cowboys would beat every team in the league right now. That offensive line is great, but I don’t know. I have a hard time seeing a team with rookies at quarterback and running back rolling the rest of the way. Then again, stranger things have already happened in 2016.
- Oakland Raiders, 9-2 (LR: 4) Kevin – Guys, I think ESPN has jumped the ship. They’ve lost their minds. They have gone mad. They believe the Oakland Raiders are a better team than the New England Patriots. The Raiders. Who just clinched their first winning season since I was 12. Go home ESPN, you’re drunk.
- New England Patriots, 9-2 (LR: 3) Jesse – We’re seriously close to a showdown between the Raiders and the Pats for AFC supremacy. ESPN isn’t wrong about that, but no matter who wins, the people of Denver lose.
- Seattle Seahawks, 7-3-1 (LR: 2) Kevin – Whoa, the Seahawks lose to the BUCCANEERS 14-5 and still are in the top 5? The Buccaneers. They scored 5 points on, the Buccaneers. A team that allowed an average of 26 points per game before this game. Yeah, I’m mad.
- Denver Broncos, 7-4 (LR: 5) Jesse – I’m flattered that ESPN sees the Broncos as a top five team and thinks that they’d beat the Chiefs (even though we did just lose to the Chiefs). But honestly, I just don’t see it at this point. The defense needs to be lights out for the Broncos to be a contender, and they haven’t been as good as they were last year. Plain and simple. Maybe whooping up on the Jaguars will make me feel better for a week.
- Kansas City Chiefs, 8-3 (LR: 7) Kevin – You know the feeling when you stay up til 12:30 to watch your team lose in OT? Ugggggggggggggggggh
- Detroit Lions, 7-4 (LR: 10) Jesse – Alright, the Cowboys at no. 1 was odd, but I’ve been rolling with it the past few weeks. Oakland at no. 2 made me want to throw up, but luckily I didn’t have to write about them this time. And now at no. 7 we have… the Lions?!! Man, I don’t understand this league anymore.
- Atlanta Falcons, 7-4 (LR: 8) Kevin – Hey Falcs (yeah I’m trying to make ‘Falcs’ happen) could you do us Broncos fans a huge favor and use your fancy offense to pound the Chiefs? Thanks.
- Pittsburgh Steelers, 6-5 (LR: 13) Jesse – “Le’Veon Bell and Antonio Brown have accounted for 63 percent of the Steelers’ yards from scrimmage since Bell’s return to the lineup.” Those two also account for 63 percent of fantasy football owners who haven’t had completely miserable seasons.
- New York Giants, 8-3 (LR: 6) Kevin – “According to Elias Sports Bureau research, the Giants have played the fourth-easiest schedule so far this season” Oh so now we are paying attention to this type of data ESPN? Because I’ve been barking about the Cowboys cupcake schedule all season which, according to some places, is easier than the Giants! But you don’t bring that up when talking about Dallas do you?
- Washington Redskins, 6-4-1 (LR: 9) Jesse – So Kirk Cousins has been playing lights out despite the fact that his team has only gone 2-2-1, which pretty much means he’s the only reason they haven’t gone 0-5 over that stretch. And the Redskins are actually thinking about NOT resigning him? Good luck with that Washington. The Cardinals, Jets, Browns and Bears will be waiting with open arms if Kirk gets away.
- Miami Dolphins, 7-4 (LR: 17) Kevin – “Think about that for a minute” Don’t tell me what to do ESPN. (Also, you might want to check your arrows ESPN, isn’t 12 higher than 17?)
- Baltimore Ravens, 6-5 (LR: 14) Jesse – “Is Justin Tucker the Ravens’ MVP?” I don’t care how well Tucker has been kicking, the fact that this question is even being asked would make me feel very discouraged about my team.
- Tampa Bay Buccaneers, 6-5 (LR: 22) Kevin – Whoa now, 8 spots for the Bucs? How did two Florida teams sneak into the top 14? Why does this world move so fast?!
- San Diego Chargers, 5-6 (LR: 25) Jesse – Just to hammer their point home about how bad the AFC South is, ESPN placed the last place Chargers one spot above the first place Texans. Then again, they really did beat the Texans last week. Man, the AFC South sucks.
- Houston Texans, 6-5 (LR: 16) Kevin – Ha, the Texans are perfectly in the middle just like last week. When you have the chances to spend $72 million to be perfectly average you have to do it right?
- Buffalo Bills, 6-5 (LR: 17) Jesse – “Not only are the Bills 6-5” is an interesting statement to make for a team. But I guess when the Brothers Ryan are running the show, any result that isn’t a hilarious catastrophe would be a pleasant surprise.
- Minnesota Vikings, 6-5 (LR: 12) Kevin – I don’t even want to write about the Vikings for fear of their badness rubbing off on me. Go away Vikings, shoo.
- Tennessee Titans, 6-6 (LR: 19) Jesse – Ah Tennessee, we meet again. I would say I hope that you get to 7-6 after your bye week, but you’re playing the Broncos so you’ll have to settle for getting to 8-7 by week 17.
- Philadelphia Eagles, 5-6 (LR: 15) Kevin – Damn, remember when the Vikings and the Eagles were all the rage in the NFL? Only to be replaced with the Raiders and Chiefs as the hot new thing. I hope a similar fall is coming for our AFC West foes.
- New Orleans Saints, 5-6 (LR: 23) Jesse – “Let’s take a moment to appreciate Drew Brees.” There ESPN goes telling us what to do again. You’re not my real dad! Besides, the Saints have maanaged just one Super Bowl appearance with Brees as their quarterback, so they’re the ones who don’t appreciate him enough.
- Carolina Panthers, 4-7 (LR: 20) Kevin – Damn, I wanted the Broncos to beat the Panthers in the Super Bowl last season. Instead they blew them up. I’m not sure they will ever be the same again.
- Arizona Cardinals, 4-6-1 (LR: 21) Jesse – But before the Broncos ruined the Panthers, Cam and co. destroyed what was left of Carson Palmer in last year’s NFC Championship.
- Green Bay Packers, 5-6 (LR: 24) Kevin – There was a lot of articles written about Aaron Rodgers and his tent from Monday’s game. That’s where we are as a society. Countless words written about a “mysterious” tent that was basically a tarp thrown over a couple of chairs.
- Indianapolis Colts, 5-6 (LR: 18) Jesse – “Backup QB Scott Tolzien was able to drive the Colts, but he wasn’t able to finish…” Don’t worry Scott, you’re far from the first man to have this problem.
- New York Jets, 3-8 (LR: 28) Kevin – This week in the NFL, come watch as the #25 Colts face off against the #26 Jets. See the NFL should totally go with the College Football Rankings System. Guaranteed to sell tickets.
- Los Angeles Rams, 4-7 (LR: 27) Jesse – To make good on Jeff Fisher’s 7-9 bullshit, the Rams will have to finish the season 3-2 and one of those games is against the Pats. So they will totally win this weekend, finish 7-9 and then sign Fisher to a contract extension, right? Is there anyone convinced that this won’t happen?
- Cincinnati Bengals, 3-7-1 (LR: 26) Kevin – “…if they want to have any chance of making the playoffs.” Playoffs? Don’t talk about…Playoffs? You kidding me ESPN? THEY’RE RANKED 28TH!
- Jacksonville Jaguars, 2-9 (LR: 30) Jesse – “The Jags, who host Denver on Sunday, grabbed some notable former Broncos in recent offseasons (Julius Thomas, Malik Jackson, Zane Beadles).” Yeah, let’s talk about those “notable” Broncos.
- Julius Thomas – 9 touchdowns combined in 2 seasons with the Jags (had 12 in each of his two seasons with Peyton Manning).
- Malik Jackson – 4.5 sacks this year, or only half a sack less than he had last year when Von Miller and DeMarcus Ware were usually getting to the quarterback first.
- Zane Beadles – now with the 49ers. Maybe you should stop signing “notable” Broncos and go for players who are actually worth those massive contracts, Jacksonville.
- Chicago Bears, 2-9 (LR: 29) Kevin – This week in the NFL, come watch as the #30 Bears face off against the #31 49ers. Okay so it doesn’t always work.
- San Francisco 49ers, 1-10 (LR: 31) Jesse – Do you know how much you have to suck to NOT be favored against the Bears at this point? Half that team is on IR and John Fox is the coach.
- Cleveland Browns, 0-12 (LR: 32) Kevin – So many jokes for the Browns upcoming bye week.
- Did anyone tell the Browns they only get one bye week per season? Not 17.
- If a bye week happens in the middle of a season long losing streak and no one is around to see it, did it really happen?
- I think it’s cruel the NFL isn’t giving Browns fans a break from so many winless NFL Sundays. Instead of a bye week they need a win week.
- Didn’t the Browns use up like 48 bye weeks during 1996-1998?