Power Rankings

Every team has played a game. Yes, it was an exhibition. And yes, a lot of star players didn’t even bother to suit up. But it was a game, against a real opponent and with a final score; so it meant something.

Preseason games can be tricky. Some teams take them seriously, while others are simply trying to get through their four required exhibitions without suffering any serious injuries. But when watching closely, there are some tidbits of information to be gleaned from each contest; it just takes a keen eye.

With that in mind, the editors at cover32 gathered to assemble this week’s Power Rankings, rating each NFL team from one to 32. Here are the results:


1. Denver Broncos – The Broncos did get any real revenge against the Seahawks, but they did bolster their confidence a bit. Peyton Manning and the offense proved they could score against Seattle, while the rebuilt defense was as advertised. (LW: 1)

2. Seattle Seahawks – The fact that they lost in Denver isn’t a big deal. But the way they played, especially quarterback Russell Wilson, has to have Seahawks fans wondering if this season doesn’t feature some regression in Seattle. (LW: 2)

3. Green Bay Packers – They lost in a downpour, falling 20-16 to Tennessee, in a game that was virtually meaningless because of the weather. There wasn’t a shred of information that could be learned from this sloppy mess. (LW: 4)

4. San Francisco 49ers – Travelling across the country to take on Baltimore wasn’t an easy assignment, so the loss is excusable. However, any time a team gets dominated, as the Niners did by the Ravens, it’s a little cause for concern. (LW: 3)

5. Philadelphia Eagles – Philly went into Chicago and played one of the more entertaining preseason games of the week, falling 34-28 to the Bears. Other than Chip Kelly licking his headset, there wasn’t much to see in the Windy City. (LW: 5)

6. Carolina Panthers – Oddly, the Panthers jump up the rankings despite losing 20-18 to the Bills. Why? Because Kelvin Benjamin showed that he can be a big-time wideout, which will help replace Cam Newton’s many lost weapons. (LW: 8)

7. New England Patriots – Given that Bill Belichick essentially makes a mockery of preseason games, the Patriots 23-6 loss at Washington is no big deal. The fact that Rob Gronkowski still hasn’t been cleared for contact is a concern, however. (LW: 6)

8. Indianapolis Colts – The Colts went into New York and fell 13-10 to the Jets, in a game that featured very few positives or negatives. It was just ho-hum to the nth degree, something to not get too excited or worried about. (LW: 7)

9. Chicago Bears – How prolific is Marc Trestman’s offense? It made Jimmy Clausen look like a star, which is saying quite a bit. The Bears didn’t seem to miss a beat, at last offensively, winning their preseason opener 34-28 over Philadelphia. (LW: 10)

10. Pittsburgh Steelers – The Steelers don’t seem to take preseason games particularly seriously, at least in terms of the final score, so giving up a lead late in the game to the Giants isn’t anything to get anxious about. (LW: 9)

11. New Orleans Saints – New Orleans got everything they wanted out of a trip to St. Louis. Drew Brees and other starters didn’t play, Mark Ingram showed some burst in the running game and they rallied for a 26-24 victory. (LW: 12)

12. Arizona Cardinals – If there’s one team that might get too much hype this week because of a strong preseason performance, it’s the Cardinals. They absolutely dominated the Texans, winning 32-0 at home. That’s impressive. (LW: 14)

13. Cincinnati Bengals – One thing that can be a cause for concern in a preseason game is sloppiness; it’s a sign that a team lacks discipline. Given that Cincy gave up three non-offensive touchdowns against KC, that’s certainly a worry. (LW: 11)

14. St. Louis Rams – St. Louis lost at home to New Orleans, but the game was all about Michael Sam’s debut. The rookie looked pretty darn good, which will hopefully turn the talk around Rams camp back to football. (LW: 13)

15. Atlanta Falcons – As Mike Tice pointed out during the opening episode of “Hard Knocks,” the Falcons needed to reestablish their winning ways. They took a step toward that with a 16-10 victory over the Dolphins. (LW: 15)

16. Detroit Lions – Nobody really noticed, but the Lions were on the other side of the field on Saturday night against the Browns. The team that kept Johnny Manziel out of the endzone and won the game? Yep, they were there too. (LW: 16)


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  1. Question Man

    Not sure how playing without 8 first string D players is a reason for major concern after the 1st preseason game even if the Ravens did win 23-3 vs. the 9ers…

  2. Seattle Seahawks will stup a mud hole in Denver Broncos in Seattle ON WEEK 3 . Denver was playing 1st players against seahawks in preseason.Seattle only had very few 1st team in. Denver needs to look at chargers game, because thats what is going to happen to Denver in week three of regular season, at SEATTLE.