Run Defenses: Rush yards per carry allowed to running backs: (Last game/Season)
New England Patriots (10-0) - I love it when analysts claim the downfall of the Patriots will be their inability to run the ball in cold weather. What is this cold weather that's going to derail the best team of all time? Is there going to be an avalanche in Foxborough? Tom Brady's first signature win was in the Snow Bowl (Tuck Rule Game for those of you in Oakland) against the Raiders.
Indianapolis Colts (8-2) - The Peyton Manning Pep Talk of the Week: "Helllo, I izzz Peyton Manningnngs. I ams drunk still froms... hic... befores the game against the Kansasasas Cities Royals. Theys are a joke soos I thoughts I could get drunks and... hic... beats thems. Anthonies Morellis says hellos! Hic! This is Archie Manningngs and this is pep talks to help yous! Hic!"
Dallas Cowboys (9-1) - I'd like to move Green Bay over Dallas. I really would. The Packers seem to be above the trend right now, meaning they're winning (and cover) despite everything, from coming off emotional road victories on Monday night to playing a team that covers as an underdog nine out of 10 times. Still, I have to be fair and look at whom the Cowboys and Packers lost to. Dallas went down to New England, which is understandable. Green Bay, meanwhile, suffered a defeat to the Bears, of all teams. To this day, I have no idea how the Packers lost that game.
Green Bay Packers (9-1) - The Packers are better than the Colts right now, but Indianapolis will start playing up to par once it gets Marvin Harrison, Tony Ugoh and Dallas Clark healthy. And by the way, I'm now 1-8 when picking Green Bay. I've been secretly contacted by the organization to make picks against them. Just don't tell anyone!
Pittsburgh Steelers (7-3) - Everyone's calling the Steelers a fraud. Well, I think any team but the Patriots would have lost following two tough divisional games, where one required a fierce second-half comeback and a missed 52-yard field goal. Plus, the Jets are one of the most underrated teams in the NFL right now. Kellen Clemens improves the Jets tremendously. It's almost as if he replaced some little pretentious girl at the quarterback position.
Tennessee Titans (6-4) - You'd think Mike Shanahan would have let Jeff Fisher win a game as a thank you for recommending Jay Cutler. But who knows, maybe Shanahan doesn't even like Cutler after watching the South Park episode where Stan and Kyle told Cutler, "You suck, but my dad says you're going to be good one day." Then again, maybe Shanahan was trying to lose, but couldn't in the wake of all the drops the Titans receivers had, and all the calls that went against Tennessee.
Jacksonville Jaguars (7-3) - The Jaguars just beat the Chargers, so it's time for an excerpt from Norv Turner's book, How to Get Everyone to Plead for Your Firing for Dummies: "Your quarterback sucks. Your running back is last year's MVP. You've had to go to your back the past few weeks because people have been complaining about the number of passes you've called for your offense. Are you screwed? Will the owner give you a new contract? No! You can avoid this! Simply give your MVP only 16 carries! People will hate you! Trust me, no one in San Diego likes me! In fact, whenever I walk into a restaurant, people spit in my face! It's incredible!"
New York Giants (7-3) - I guess I can call myself an idiot because I actually believe the Redskins are better than the Giants, despite the fact I'm placing the latter higher on this list than the former. But Washington has a better defense than New York. I also trust Jason Campbell more than Eli Manning. Campbell seems to be improving every week, while Manning has been stagnant; each Sunday, it's about a two dozen good throws, six horrendous tosses and an unwavering smirk that indicates he would be happier stocking shelves at Wal-Mart.
Cleveland Browns (6-4) - Ever wonder who was upset the most by the crazy field goal at the end of the Ravens-Browns game? Brian Billick's the easy answer; he looked like he wanted to swing a golf club at the referee's face. Ray Lewis is also obvious. My answer, however, is Romeo Crennel. Put yourself in his shoes for a second. You're a big, hungry man. There are 20 cheesesteaks, 40 cheeseburgers and 60 hot dogs awaiting your belly in the locker room. Yeah, just a light snack. You're waiting for the game to end, but it won't. The refs are taking too long, and now you're wondering if you should eat one of them...
Seattle Seahawks (6-4) - The Seahawks have looked impressive the past two weeks, but their two victories weren't against good teams (Chicago and San Francisco), and they both took place at home. I'd like to see Seattle beat a talented squad on the road before I can call them a serious contender.
32. San Francisco 49ers (2-8) - The 49ers, down 13-6 with a few minutes left in regulation and a 4th-and-10 deep inside St. Louis territory, decided to nail a field goal and attempt an onside kick instead of going for it. Pretty dumb decision, right? Well, I never polled about 1,000 people in San Francisco, asking why they thought the 49ers chose to employ this bizarre tactic. Here aren't the results: 25% - The Rams defense is so good! 25% - One of the assistant coaches drank with Peyton Manning and told Mike Nolan there was 12 minutes remaining in the game instead of two. 25% - Trent Dilfer was too busy to get on the field because he was showing off his Super Bowl ring. 25% - San Francisco's entire roster was too perplexed by the ring, unaware what a "Super Bowl" is.
31. Miami Dolphins (0-10) - We're only six weeks away from a mass suicide from the 1972 Dolphins team! It's going to be a beautiful day when the Patriots go 16-0 and Miami finishes 0-16. And by the way, it's a little sad that a possible 0-16 squad isn't the worst team in the NFL. The Dolphins have no talent and are poorly coached. But at least they have veterans. San Francisco doesn't even have those (except for Bryant Young).
30. Oakland Raiders (2-8) - Letters From Dominic (I ran a segment last year composing fake letters from Edgerrin James to Peyton Manning. This year, I'm doing the same thing for Dominic Rhodes): "Deer Peeton, I had a god time drinkings withs youse guyses... hic... this weekends! I still thinks I am still drunks! Holy shizzels, whose am I writings to write now!? I am don't eveen knows where I am... hic... rights know! Can I have you're autographs. You're friend, Hic!"
29. Atlanta Falcons (3-7) - Byron Leftwich incomplete. Byron Leftwich fumble. Byron Leftwich interception. Byron Leftwich incomplete. Byron Leftwich fumble. Byron Leftwich interception. Byron Leftwich incomplete. Byron Leftwich fumble. Byron Leftwich interception. Byron Leftwich incomplete. Byron Leftwich fumble. Byron Leftwich interception. Byron Leftwich incomplete. Byron Leftwich fumble. Byron Leftwich interception. Byron Leftwich incomplete. Byron Leftwich fumble. Byron Leftwich interception.
28. Minnesota Vikings (3-7) - Minnesota's best player is out, its rookie receiver is the top quarterback on the roster and its head coach has no idea what a screen pass is. Other than that, the Vikings are having a great season!
27. St. Louis Rams (2-8) - The Rams should have taken one for the team and intentionally lost to San Francisco last week. By winning, they've moved the 49ers into position to draft second come April. The problem is New England has San Francisco's No. 1 selection. So, by claiming victory, the Patriots basically have Darren McFadden locked up. I think the rest of the league would like to say, "Screw you, Rams! Screw you!"
26. New York Jets (2-8) - Maybe Eric Mangini should have paid less attention to Bill Belichick's video library and more to his own quarterback situation. If Kellen Clemens had started the entire year, the Jets would be 5-5 or 6-4 right now.
25. Baltimore Ravens (4-6) - If Mike Tirico, Tony Kornheiser and Ron Jaworski can have the likes of Jimmy Kimmel and Drew Carey in the booth, why can't I have a celebrity guest on my Power Rankings page? I had Keyshawn Johnson, Emmitt Smith, Channing Crowder, Peyton Manning and Tom Brady thus far. OK... I'm here with Brian Billick! Brian, I understand you were a bit upset about that field goal fiasco against the Browns? "I don't know what happened there." You didn't see it? Phil Dawson kicked it, it bounced off the upright and... "I don't know what happened there." Ummm... OK? So, I take it you weren't a big fan? "I don't know what happened there. And by the way, I know more about football than you, which makes me a God-like figure to you." Is that why you kicked it to Josh Cribbs twice? "Excuse me for a second, let me consult my magic mirror. Mirror, mirror, on the wall, who's the smartest football coach of them all? Oh, I am? Why thank you, you're too kind. OK Walt, I now know for a fact that I am smarter and better than you."
24. Kansas City Chiefs (4-6) - I'm calling Kansas City's loss at Indianapolis a victory for the Chiefs and a defeat for the Colts. I already mentioned the possibility that Peyton Manning got drunk with Anthony Morelli. Oddities on other reasons Indianapolis lost to the crappy Chiefs: 1:20 - Brodie Croyle threatened to take away Peyton Manning's commercials, so Manning got distracted. 2:1 - Peyton Manning got sick, so his mom secretly took his place. 6:1 - Manning couldn't do the passing tree with Marvin Harrison before the game, so he decided to snort some cocaine instead.
23. Cincinnati Bengals (3-7) - A bit more on John Beck, whom some people (cough, Matt, sneeze) presumed I called a bust in my write-up. I simply wrote, "John Beck looks like a loser. I know he was making his first start on the road, but he looked scared and unsure of himself." I didn't call him a bust; he just looked terrible. And I acknowledged that it was his first start. However, the facts remain that Andy Reid, who loves BYU guys, passed up on him. And the guy who selected him, Randy Mueller, is completely clueless and has no idea what he's doing. So, Beck's a little behind the eight ball in my mind right now.
The Rest: 11. Washington Redskins (5-5). 12. San Diego Chargers (5-5). 13. Houston Texans (5-5). 14. Arizona Cardinals (5-5). 15. Buffalo Bills (5-5).
16. Detroit Lions (6-4). 17. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (6-4). 18. Denver Broncos (5-5). 19. New Orleans Saints (4-6). 20. Chicago Bears (4-6).
21. Philadelphia Eagles (5-5). 22. Carolina Panthers (4-6).