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2010 NFL Power Rankings: Week 1


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2010 NFL Power Rankings: Week 1

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ESPN.com

The 2010 NFL regular season kicks off with some titanic tilts that should shake up our Week 1 ESPN.com Power Rankings.

Thursday, the defending Super Bowl champion New Orleans Saints meet the visiting Minnesota Vikings in a rematch of the NFC Championship Game. The Saints finished runner-up in the weekly polling of our panel of experts. The Indianapolis Colts, whom the Saints defeated in Super Bowl XLIV, rank first, followed by the Saints, the Green Bay Packers, the Dallas Cowboys and the Vikings at No. 5 overall.

The Colts also will have to defend their AFC South supremacy Sunday when they visit the Houston Texans, who rank No. 14 overall. On the debut of ESPN's "Monday Night Football," the Baltimore Ravens visit the New York Jets in a battle of our No. 6 and No. 9 teams. The records in the Week 1 poll reflect each team's 2009 regular-season.

• More: Voting | Bloggers | SN: Rank 'Em | Pick' Em | Team Power Rankings charts since 2002

Editor's note: "LW" indicates each team's ranking in the Training Camp edition of the 2010 Power Rankings.

2010 Power Rankings: Week 1

RK (LW) TEAM REC COMMENT

1 (1) Colts 14-2-0 Health of offensive line will be big story early. (Kuharsky)

2 (2) Saints 13-3-0 They won it all, so respect is due, but repeating is tough and I'm expecting a drop-off in New Orleans this season. (Sando)

3 (6) Packers 11-5-0 The defense was tops in the NFC last year. But the offense may steal the show in 2010. (Walker)

4 (4) Cowboys 11-5-0 The debut of WR Dez Bryant in a game has taken almost as long as the Cowboys took to build the new stadium. (Clayton)

5 (3) Vikings 12-4-0 Brett Favre returns at quarterback. But will the offense be the same without WR Sidney Rice? (Walker)

6 (5) Ravens 9-7-0 Adding WR T.J. Houshmandzadeh is another sign Baltimore is aiming for nothing less than a Super Bowl. (Walker)

7 (8) Falcons 9-7-0 Matt Ryan's third season in Mike Mularkey's offense should be his best, giving Atlanta a chance to unseat the Saints. (Sando)

8 (10) Chargers 13-3-0 Philip Rivers is missing in too many young stud QB conversations.(Kuharsky)

9 (7) Jets 9-7-0 The loss of pass-rusher Calvin Pace to injury heightened the need for Darrelle Revis' return. (Clayton)

10 (9) Patriots 10-6-0 The Brady Bunch is a lot younger this year, but this series lives forever atop the AFC East as a playoff rerun. (Clayton)

11 (13) Dolphins 7-9-0 The Dolphins are the San Francisco 49ers of the AFC. They hit you hard on both sides of the ball. (Clayton)

12 (11) Bengals 10-6-0 QB Carson Palmer has the right weapons to bounce back from a pedestrian 2009 season. (Walker)

13 (12) 49ers 8-8-0 Anything less than a division title looks like a failure amid so much NFC West turmoil. (Sando)

14 (14) Texans 9-7-0 I'm gaining faith in Arian Foster as the lead back. (Kuharsky)

15 (17) Eagles 11-5-0 A bad third preseason game has people wondering how good Kevin Kolb is. He's good, but he's no Donovan McNabb. (Clayton)

16 (18) Titans 8-8-0 Defensive line depth could key a resurgence.(Kuharsky)

17 (20) Redskins 4-12-0 Even if the Redskins can't trade Albert Haynesworth, he can still help their defense. (Clayton)

18 (19) Steelers 9-7-0 It's time to see if this team can win without QB Ben Roethlisberger. (Walker)

19 (16) Giants 8-8-0 What is it about this division? The Giants, Redskins, Cowboys and Eagles all have injury issues on the offensive line. (Clayton)

20 (15) Cardinals 10-6-0 Rookie QB Max Hall could wind up starting games in what looks like a transition season for Arizona. (Sando)

21 (21) Bears 7-9-0 I'm not buying the Mike Martz-Jay Cutler marriage so far. Are you? (Walker)

22 (23) Broncos 8-8-0 It won't go over well if the Raiders pass the Broncos in the AFC West standings. (Kuharsky)

23 (22) Panthers 8-8-0 Carolina has the right running backs in a league that puts a premium on excellent quarterback play. (Sando)

24 (24) Raiders 5-11-0 Against the Titans' Chris Johnson, the Raiders' run defense gets its biggest possible challenge in Week 1. (Kuharsky)

25 (26) Jaguars 7-9-0 Begin the debate on weapons, protection and quality of quarterbacking. (Kuharsky)

26 (25) Seahawks 5-11-0 Tough to see the OL functioning well early minus coach Alex Gibbs and injured LT Russell Okung. (Sando)

27 (27) Chiefs 4-12-0 The Chiefs were picked by ESPN The Magazine as division winners. (Kuharsky)

28 (29) Lions 2-14-0 QB Matthew Stafford, WR Calvin Johnson and RB Jahvid Best are a good, young nucleus to build around. (Walker)

29 (28) Browns 5-11-0 QB Jake Delhomme has been solid in exhibition games. Can he keep it up in the regular season? (Walker)

30 (30) Buccaneers 3-13-0 The early schedule gives the Bucs a chance, particularly with Josh Freeman returning to practice. (Sando)

31 (31) Bills 6-10-0 Too bad the Bills don't have five C.J. Spillers to make the offense exciting. (Clayton)

32 (32) Rams 1-15-0 Sam Bradford's development (so far) gives the Rams reason for optimism heading into Week 1. (Sando)

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I'm going to have to go gargle with hand sanitizer when I finish typing this - but ...

The SB champions should be ranked #1 in these things until they've been beaten. I've never understood that. The Saints beat the Colts in the Superbowl and the Colts are ranked above them.

I used to really like the Colts until I saw them "lay down" to give that game away - they don't deserve to be number one.

Ok - gotta go gargle now.

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I'm going to have to go gargle with hand sanitizer when I finish typing this - but ...

The SB champions should be ranked #1 in these things until they've been beaten. I've never understood that. The Saints beat the Colts in the Superbowl and the Colts are ranked above them.

I used to really like the Colts until I saw them "lay down" to give that game away - they don't deserve to be number one.

Ok - gotta go gargle now.

LMAO. I was thinking the exact same thing but I didn't want to post it.

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I'm going to have to go gargle with hand sanitizer when I finish typing this - but ...

The SB champions should be ranked #1 in these things until they've been beaten. I've never understood that. The Saints beat the Colts in the Superbowl and the Colts are ranked above them.

I used to really like the Colts until I saw them "lay down" to give that game away - they don't deserve to be number one.

Ok - gotta go gargle now.

That's a good point.

Dam them Saints! :angry:

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The SB champions should be ranked #1 in these things until they've been beaten. I've never understood that. The Saints beat the Colts in the Superbowl and the Colts are ranked above them.

I don't know Tandy...IMO, the Colts and Vikes should be ranked higher than the Aints. Yes, they won the big game, but how they made it to the Superbowl may be the reason they're rated #2. In those big games, it wasn't the Aints that defeated the Vikes or Colts. Those teams beat themselves. I've watched football long enough to know when a team is flat out better than the other team and they were better than the Aints. The Aints were just good at capitalizing on opportunities, so when you turn over the ball, they have the coaching and personnel to take advantage of those situations. The same thing happened against the Redskins and Dolphins. You take away the turnovers and I'm sure we'd be looking at a different champion.

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I don't know Tandy...IMO, the Colts and Vikes should be ranked higher than the Aints. Yes, they won the big game, but how they made it to the Superbowl may be the reason they're rated #2. In those big games, it wasn't the Aints that defeated the Vikes or Colts. Those teams beat themselves. I've watched football long enough to know when a team is flat out better than the other team and they were better than the Aints. The Aints were just good at capitalizing on opportunities, so when you turn over the ball, they have the coaching and personnel to take advantage of those situations. The same thing happened against the Redskins and Dolphins. You take away the turnovers and I'm sure we'd be looking at a different champion.

and if my aunt had balls she would be my uncle.

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I don't know Tandy...IMO, the Colts and Vikes should be ranked higher than the Aints. Yes, they won the big game, but how they made it to the Superbowl may be the reason they're rated #2. In those big games, it wasn't the Aints that defeated the Vikes or Colts. Those teams beat themselves. I've watched football long enough to know when a team is flat out better than the other team and they were better than the Aints. The Aints were just good at capitalizing on opportunities, so when you turn over the ball, they have the coaching and personnel to take advantage of those situations. The same thing happened against the Redskins and Dolphins. You take away the turnovers and I'm sure we'd be looking at a different champion.

Take away a few "lucky" plays by the Falcons, and they don't have back to back winning seasons.....

See, anyone can play "what if" ;)

PS, Tandy, you are a class act and very likable ( even though you are a Falcons fan)

Edited by cdrw
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I'll tell u why Saints are ranked below the Colts. Because it's good old fashioned northern U.S. bias. Same reason the NFC south never gets props. All the northern U.S.fans and their media were rooting for the Vikings and Colts against the Saints, save a few exceptions. The deep south Saints were phenomenal last season, and anyone with half a brain cell could see it.

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Every year it's the same ole song and dance in terms of ranking.

The same old "over hyped and rated" teams make the top of the list. It is laughable at best.

I am with Tandy to a certain degree on this.

Why in the world would the saints not be ranked number 1? They won the super bowl did they not? LOL

I can't stand them but it's true.

Why exactly are the sam old teams ranked top 10 or so every year.

Packers,cowboys,steelers and so on. It has very little to do with anything other than popularity. Let's face it. The top ten teams should be the top ten finishing teams of the year before with injuries and drafts,roster moves concidered.

heck I think the "NFL POWER RANKINGS" should be for ever know from this moment on as "NFLPC" or

N ational F avoritism "and" Love "for" P layers "and" C oaches

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Excuse me??? :huh:

What "lucky" plays are you referring to?? We scratched and fought to go back-to-back. Nothing was given to us.

Funny how fans from every team think every win was deserved, every call against them is unjustified, and the only reason they ever lose is because someone cheated, schedule was brutal, too many injuries...

The only truth is above in large print, and wins is ALL that matters!

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I'm going to have to go gargle with hand sanitizer when I finish typing this - but ...

The SB champions should be ranked #1 in these things until they've been beaten. I've never understood that. The Saints beat the Colts in the Superbowl and the Colts are ranked above them.

I used to really like the Colts until I saw them "lay down" to give that game away - they don't deserve to be number one.

Ok - gotta go gargle now.

I see your point, but it's not based off of last year. They are basing it off of today, and where were projected as far as talent. The pre-season, Draft picks, injuries, and FA loses all factor into these rankings.

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I don't know Tandy...IMO, the Colts and Vikes should be ranked higher than the Aints. Yes, they won the big game, but how they made it to the Superbowl may be the reason they're rated #2. In those big games, it wasn't the Aints that defeated the Vikes or Colts. Those teams beat themselves. I've watched football long enough to know when a team is flat out better than the other team and they were better than the Aints. The Aints were just good at capitalizing on opportunities, so when you turn over the ball, they have the coaching and personnel to take advantage of those situations. The same thing happened against the Redskins and Dolphins. You take away the turnovers and I'm sure we'd be looking at a different champion.

I agree that the Colts and Vikes were better than the Saints last year. However, I see the Vikes taking a big step back and the Colts and Saints will keep on tickin'. I think this list is pretty decent.

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I see your point, but it's not based off of last year. They are basing it off of today, and where were projected as far as talent. The pre-season, Draft picks, injuries, and FA loses all factor into these rankings.

And not a meaningful game since the Saints blew out the Colts in the SB has been played yet.

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Here is the thing about the media "experts".

Last year, 14 out of 16 ESPN analysts picked the Falcons to win the NFC South.

New Orleans was widely considered to be the 3rd best team.......in the NFC South.

That's really all I have to say about the media "experts".

Edited by Peyton
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Here is the thing about the media "experts".

Last year, 14 out of 16 ESPN analysts picked the Falcons to win the NFC South.

New Orleans was widely considered to be the 3rd best team.......in the NFC South.

That's really all I have to say about the media "experts".

These rankings mean absolutely nothing, but still entertaining to read. I like to see what the so-called experts think about the birds.

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I'm going to have to go gargle with hand sanitizer when I finish typing this - but ...

The SB champions should be ranked #1 in these things until they've been beaten. I've never understood that. The Saints beat the Colts in the Superbowl and the Colts are ranked above them.

I used to really like the Colts until I saw them "lay down" to give that game away - they don't deserve to be number one.

Ok - gotta go gargle now.

Here's the story why, by Pat Yasinskas >>>>

ESPN.com's inaugural 2010 regular-season NFL Power Rankings are out, and let me make one thing very clear as I get ready to head to New Orleans for Thursday night’s opener between the Vikings and Saints: I did not have a vote.

Somehow -- and this is beyond my comprehension -- the defending Super Bowl champions are No. 2 in the rankings. How’d that happen? Well, three voters did the only prudent thing they could and gave the Saints their No. 1 vote.

The fourth voter ranked the Saints No. 5. Yes, No. 5.

For the record, that voter is John Clayton and he and I will have a little discussion about this Wednesday when we roll out the final segment in our Great Debate series.

For the record, I think Clayton is the best in the business. Clayton also is a longtime friend and mentor. I’ve had dinner with him and ridden in the same rental car with him. Heck, we’re both Pennsylvania born and bred, although I have a pet name for the side of the state Clayton’s from -- “West Virginia.’’

But I disagree with Clayton on this one and I’m sure there are many New Orleans fans that more than disagree. They’re already filling up my mailbag with venom for Clayton.

Hmmm. I always thought retirement was a long way off, but I’m sensing a sudden opportunity here. For the right price, I might be willing to sell Clayton’s cell phone number.

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