The Strength Of Ten: Week 8
We are approaching the half way point of the season and one thing is clear. I ONLY trust the Patriots.
There it is. That's my bullet point this week.
By the way -- sorry for releasing these two days late. Unfortunately when you are invested in potty training a 3 year old during your writing time, this is what you get.
That said -- right now only four teams realistically have a honest chance of winning the Super Bowl. They are reflected in this week's rankings.
1. New England Patriots (6-1)
LAST WEEK: #2
I think from now on every time I input an entry relating to the New England Patriots it should start with the words "No surprise here". I am now in a place where they are the only team in football I absolutely trust.
2. Dallas Cowboys (5-1)
LAST WEEK: #3
I'll say it again -- with or without Tony Romo, this is a real team. Huge showdown vs. Philly will tells us even more about Dallas especially off a bye week.
3. Minnesota Vikings (5-1)
LAST WEEK: #1
Here is my one concern. It goes beyond just losing their first game. Lost in the five game unbeaten streak was the amount of injuries sustained across their roster. Something to look at moving forward now that home-field throughout is at stake.
4. Seattle Seahawks (4-1-1)
LAST WEEK: SAME
This is why I have the most confidence in Seattle to win the NFC as the season the progresses. They were HORRID on Sunday Night in Arizona.
Don't believe me?
Look at the box score of the game. The very fact they came away with a tie speaks volumes into just how good this defense is and how their experience overcomes any obstacle.
5. Kansas City Chiefs (4-2)
LAST WEEK: #8
Again no one is talking about Kansas City. As wonky as their start of the season was, they have figured out some things the last two weeks. Andy Reid in my opinion is one of the three best coaches in the league and no one is talking about that. Or him for that matter.
6. Denver Broncos (5-2)
LAST WEEK: UNRANKED
Snapped a two game losing streak in a big way by crushing their old stinky quarterback, Brock Osweiler. Again I do have doubt that this defense can sustain this high level of play a second straight season with an offense that at times looks lost. Especially if they expect to pass New England for the second straight year.
7. Oakland Raiders (5-2)
LAST WEEK: UNRANKED
Probably the weirdest 5-2 team in recent memory. Not really that good at home. But they are unbeaten on the road and more impressive than that -- winning games on the East Coast. Derek Carr is a low-key MVP candidate
8. Philadelphia Eagles (4-2)
LAST WEEK: #UNRANKED
I still can't figure out the Eagles team. They crushed teams like Pittsburgh and previously unbeaten Minnesota one week. Then lose to Detroit and Washington the next. One thing is clear though. Their defensive front 7 might be top 2 or 3 in all the NFL. Carson Wentz also has not fallen of a cliff either.
9. San Diego Chargers (3-4)
LAST WEEK: UNRANKED
I know everyone is going to think I am absolutely nuts for this but consider this.
They have led their game longer than 29 other teams in the league this season. AT WORSE they should be 6-1. This is a team that started the year snakebitten by losing WR Keenan Allen and later RB Danny Woodhead. Yet the last few weeks they have persevered with huge wins vs. Denver and last week at Atlanta. I honestly cannot find ten teams who are actually better than Phillip Rivers and company right now. Don't be surprised if they sneak into the Wild-Card conversation. Rookie Joey Bosa is also a revelation.
10. Atlanta Falcons (4-3)
LAST WEEK: #5
Last week was very disappointing and it makes the Seattle loss fro the previous week that much worse. I don't think this team will fall off a cliff like last year when they started 5-0 but their upcoming schedule could be a problem.
Packers this week. Followed by the Bucs, Eagles, Cardinals and Chiefs.
Matt Ryan and the crew need to right the ship. And fast.