With 7 weeks in the books the power rankings become a little clearer. No reason for the top team to fall as the Patriots were winners against the best team they have faced all season the 2nd ranked Jets. The Jets stay in the second spot playing well in the game. I know most people would have the Jets a bit lower but have a look at what they have done this season. The Jets are dominant on defense. They are the toughest team to rush on in the league right now at 27.5 DRYoba. Offensively they are ranked 8th overall. They are not wowing anyone throwing the ball but the rushing offense is formidable. Ground and pound is back in East Rutherford NJ.
When you think about Cincinnati in the Marvin Lewis era you think about defense, and terrible post season success. This year it is the offense carrying this team. While the defense is pretty strong at the 10th spot the offense is third overall behind New England and Arizona. Is this the year Andy Dalton figures it out? The Bengals are 7th overall in YPoba and 4th in RYoba. That is a great balance.
There is a lot of talk about Minnesota being a playoff team this year. That might be possible considering the division they play in and how bad the rest of the NFC is but are they a strong team? Right now it does not appear so. They are 20th overall in the rankings. Their two positives are rushing the ball and defending the pass. They rank 5th and 7th respectively. But on the flip side their passing game and run defense are 31st and 29th respectively. A look at their schedule shows the lack of quality they have faced. Teams played have a record of 14-27. The Vikings have a stretch coming up in a few weeks where they face Green Bay, @Atlanta, Seattle, @Arizona. They should lose every one of those games. They better keep beating the lesser teams.
Pittsburgh may be the team to watch for. Their stats are misleading as they have been without Big Ben for a good part of the season now. But even without him they are 4-3 and 11th in the rankings. If Ben is worth 6 points to this team that would put them as the second overall team right now. We saw how well they played New England week 1. The Steelers could be a team to watch for in the second half.