Daddy-O Posted April 30, 2010 Share Posted April 30, 2010 http://espn.go.com/nfl/ESPN.comRemember how the New Orleans Saints ended the 2009 regular season?The 13-3 Saints stumbled into the postseason after three consecutive losses. Still, only four months after the end of the regular-season campaign, it's stunning to see that the Saints were rated No. 5 overall in ESPN.com's NFL Power Rankings that closed last season.Of course, the Saints found their footing and rumbled to their first Super Bowl title. They've also re-established themselves atop our offseason Power Rankings, the latest edition of which you'll see unveiled below.The Indianapolis Colts -- who occupied the top spot of the 2009 regular-season final rankings -- find themselves runners-up to the Saints in this edition. Their Super Bowl loss to the Saints made the No. 2 spot a lock with our experts, who weighed in with their ballots after taking into account offseason moves, including the recently concluded NFL draft.The Minnesota Vikings, San Diego Chargers and Dallas Cowboys round out our offseason top five.Look for the next edition of our Power Rankings as training camps open in July.Editor's note: "LW" indicates each team's ranking in the Week 18 edition of the 2009 Power Rankings.2010 Power Rankings: Offseason RK (LW) TEAM REC COMMENT 1 (5) Saints 13-3-0 Losing FS Darren Sharper to free agency would be a big blow to the Super Bowl champs. (Sando) 2 (1) Colts 14-2-0 Have the Colts done enough to improve their short-yardage attack? (Kuharsky) 3 (3) Vikings 12-4-0 It all depends on whether Brett Favre still wants to play football. (Chadiha) 4 (2) Chargers 13-3-0 Rookie RB Ryan Mathews will have to produce immediately. (Kuharsky) 5 (4) Cowboys 11-5-0 The Cowboys' quiet offseason was rewarded when WR Dez Bryant fell to them in the draft. (Clayton) 6 (6) Packers 11-5-0 They retained starting OTs Mark Tauscher and Chad Clifton and drafted OT Bryan Bulaga out of Iowa in the first round. QB Aaron Rodgers has to be pleased with his protection. (Chadiha) 7 (11) Ravens 9-7-0 The addition of WRs Anquan Boldin and Donte Stallworth -- along with the return of Derrick Mason -- gives the Ravens' passing game a much-needed boost. (Chadiha) 8 (12) Jets 9-7-0 Rex Ryan closed the gap with a great defense and an improving Mark Sanchez, but you have to wonder whether the Jets overdid it this offseason in releasing Thomas Jones and Alan Faneca. (Clayton) 9 (10) Patriots 10-6-0 Tom Brady is the sheriff in this division, but the gap is closing. The roster is getting younger, but the Pats could still use a pass-rusher. (Clayton) 10 (15) Falcons 9-7-0 Will rookie first-round pick Sean Weatherspoon provide immediate impact at OLB? (Sando) 11 (9) Bengals 10-6-0 QB Carson Palmer needed more help. The Bengals gave it to him through free agency (WR Antonio Bryant) and the draft (TE Jermaine Gresham and WR Jordan Shipley). (Chadiha) 12 (8) Cardinals 10-6-0 The Cardinals will relish being overlooked if people assume the 49ers will overtake them now that Kurt Warner has retired. (Sando) 13 (7) Eagles 11-5-0 The Eagles picked a tough time for Kevin Kolb to take over as quarterback. Their schedule features 11 top-level QBs, including two games against Donovan McNabb. (Clayton) 14 (14) Texans 9-7-0 Expectations, schedule will both be tougher in 2010. (Kuharsky) 15 (19) 49ers 8-8-0 The 49ers' offensive line is the big story after adding line coach Mike Solari and two first-round picks. Great expectations. (Sando) 16 (16) Titans 8-8-0 The Titans are replacing a lot of leadership all at once. (Kuharsky) 17 (20) Giants 8-8-0 Tom Coughlin is too good a coach to let his Giants drop below .500, but this offseason didn't make the roster too much better. (Clayton) 18 (18) Panthers 8-8-0 All eyes will be on the Matt Moore-Jimmy Clausen duel at QB. (Sando) 19 (13) Steelers 9-7-0 Their star quarterback (Ben Roethlisberger) is suspended for up to six games, and they traded their star receiver (Santonio Holmes) to the New York Jets. What else do you need to know? (Chadiha) 20 (17) Broncos 8-8-0 The main remnants of the Mike Shanahan-era offense are now gone. (Kuharsky) 21 (22) Bears 7-9-0 They signed DE Julius Peppers, but there isn't much else to like about their offseason. (Chadiha) 22 (21) Dolphins 7-9-0 Brandon Marshall will add big plays to the Dolphins' offense, and an easier schedule should allow them to get back over .500. (Clayton) 23 (29) Redskins 4-12-0 Adding Donovan McNabb legitimizes the Redskins and could make them playoff contenders. Finally, Dan Snyder has a franchise quarterback. (Clayton) 24 (26) Raiders 5-11-0 Improving with the addition of QB Jason Campbell and a good draft. (Kuharsky) 25 (23) Jaguars 7-9-0 The Jags' defensive line is almost completely rebuilt. (Kuharsky) 26 (27) Seahawks 5-11-0 The Seahawks are basking in the glow of a well-received draft, but it's still not clear how this team will generate an outside pass rush. (Sando) 27 (25) Browns 5-11-0 Their best acquisition was executive Mike Holmgren. The third-round selection of QB Colt McCoy will help down the road. (Chadiha) 28 (24) Bills 6-10-0 The decision to switch to a 3-4 defense ate up draft resources the Bills could have used to fix the offensive line and upgrade the quarterback position. (Clayton) 29 (28) Chiefs 4-12-0 Drafting FS Eric Berry, RB Dexter McCluster adds dynamic elements. (Kuharsky) 30 (30) Buccaneers 3-13-0 Rookie DTs Gerald McCoy and Brian Price will be given chances to make an immediate impact for the Bucs. (Sando) 31 (31) Lions 2-14-0 The first-round selections of DT Ndamukong Suh and RB Jahvid Best indicate the Lions are adding the right pieces to their roster. (Chadiha) 32 (32) Rams 1-15-0 The big question in St. Louis is how long the Rams should wait before feeding QB Sam Bradford to teams better than the Lions. At least a few games on the sideline would likely help. (Sando) Quote Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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