Run Defenses: Rush yards per carry allowed to running backs: (Last game/Season)
New England Patriots (11-0) - Was the Patriots-Eagles game fixed? I'm not sure, but my dad, a die-hard Eagles fan, was excited on Sunday night. He was over to watch the game, and he kept yelling, "This is fixed! We're going to win!" Well, Philadelphia came up short. The thing I don't understand is how New England wasn't able to apply pressure on A.J. Feeley. The Eagles weren't able to pass protect all year. They couldn't even keep the Dolphins out of the backfield. Yet, the Patriots couldn't manage to rattle Feeley? Maybe my dad had a point. The whole thing seemed fishy to me.
Green Bay Packers (10-1) - Well, I got the pick right, but in my write-up, I said I liked Detroit but was taking the Packers. So, I haven't been fired yet by Green Bay's organization. They're still paying me to make selections against them. I'm now 2-8 in those situations, but really I'm 1-9 if you take my thought process into account. Oh, and this was supposed to be a secret, so don't tell anyone.
Dallas Cowboys (10-1) - The Cowboys are jerks. Why did they have to blow the Jets out? Forget that I foolishly had New York for four units. The fact remains that we haven't seen an exciting 4 p.m. Thanksgiving game in two years. How am I supposed to watch a boring contest when the five pounds of turkey I've eaten is putting me into a coma? Speaking of fixed games - maybe the advertisers need to pay the Cowboys off next year to keep things close.
Indianapolis Colts (9-2) - The Peyton Manning Pep Talk of the Week: "Hey little brother, I'm Peyton Manning. You used to be my younger sibling, but after buying a ticket at Meadowlands and sitting in my cushy press box, I'm going to disown you. When I throw four picks or more, I do it with style. I come back at the end and rip the hearts out of my opponents, unless, you know, our kicker shows up drunk and chokes more than Aurora Snow. But anyway, the point is, you suck. You suck, you suck, you suck. I'm adopting someone else as my younger brother. Goodbye, loser. This is Peyton Manning, and I hope this pep talk helped you!"
Jacksonville Jaguars (8-3) - In case you're wondering, I put the Colts below the Cowboys and Packers because of all of Indianapolis' injuries. They're not getting Dwight Freeney back, and who knows if Marvin Harrison will ever be 100 percent again, given his age? Jacksonville will also move ahead of the Colts if it beats them on Sunday.
Pittsburgh Steelers (8-3) - The Steelers were 16-point favorites on Monday night. I was hoping the contest wasn't going to be a 38-0 blowout. Well, the crazy rainstorm actually made things interesting. Sure, the game was close, but the real thrill was figuring out where the teams were on the field. They should erase all yard marks from now on.
Cleveland Browns (7-4) - I was shocked to see that the Browns showed up for the Texans; I thought that in the wake of their crazy, last-second victory at Baltimore, they would be flat. Give credit to Romeo Crennel for having his team energized. He clearly employed some brilliant tactic. Maybe he stole everyone's food and promised to give it back if they beat Houston. If that really happened, don't be surprised if Crennel lied about returning the food.
New York Giants (7-4) - In case you haven't realized it yet, Eli Manning is the most overrated and underrated quarterback of all time. When he has a good game, everyone exclaims that he has finally arrived, he's having the best season of his career and that he will eventually become like his brother. When he sucks it up like he did on Sunday, people with Web sites state that he looks like Wal-Mart stockboy or a 13-year-old attending a Bar Mitzvah, while the talking heads on TV ask why the Giants traded four billion draft picks to get him. Manning should never have been selected first overall, but he's not a bad quarterback. He's just a quirky kid with a nice arm, who just isn't mentally strong enough to be reliable every Sunday.
Seattle Seahawks (7-4) - Sorry, but I'm not a big Seahawks believer just yet. Their previous three victories have been against the 49ers, Bears and Rams, who were ahead 19-7 when Gus Frerotte started screwing things up. Besides, Seattle could actually get worse when Shaun Alexander comes back; not every NFL runner is better at eating 20 hot dogs than gaining 20 yards in a single afternoon.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers (7-4) - If I don't put the Buccaneers in my Top 10, Matt McGuire could very well send me about 20 virus e-mails. I think Tampa Bay is a solid squad, but needs to prove itself by getting quality road wins. They're 2-3 as visitors, losing to Detroit, and beating only Carolina and Atlanta.
32. Miami Dolphins (0-11) - You know that saying? If a tree falls in a forest and no one is around to hear it, does it make a sound? Well, here's a new one for you. If Ricky Williams fumbles the ball, and he's too high to realize it, did he really fumble the ball?
31. San Francisco 49ers (3-8) - So this is why the 49ers haven't been able to score for weeks... They were saving up all of their energy for the Arizona Cardinals. Makes sense. Well, not really. I'm actually convinced though that the Jets, Dolphins and Bills paid off Arizona to lose on purpose, just so the Patriots wouldn't have the ability to draft Darren McFadden.
30. Atlanta Falcons (3-8) - I guess Falcons fans don't have to worry about Byron Leftwich replacing Joey Harrington this week. After all, they're coming off a loss; not a win.
29. Oakland Raiders (3-8) - 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): "Dear Peyton. You may be surprised by my correct grammar and spelling. I recently purchased an English guide for $500. Curiously, it was just a slip of paper that read, "Tune in to ESPN's Sunday NFL Countdown and pay attention to Emmitt Smith. Say the opposite of what he says, and you'll be speaking perfect English in less than 24 hours!" It worked, Peyton! So... I'm working on a business proposal for you. I'll give it to you next week. For now, can I have your autograph? Your friend, Dominic!"
28. St. Louis Rams (2-9) - I never polled about 1,000 people in St. Louis, asking why they thought the Rams were so cursed with injuries this year. Here aren't the results: 44% - Marc Bulger, Steven Jackson and Orlando Pace were with me when I desecrated an Indian burial ground. 33% - The players have been taking Scott Linehan's sanity medication instead of vitamins. 23% - The team could play hurt, but they don't live in a city where you can get "pain medication" for free. Not having Ricky Williams as a teammate hurts too.
27. New York Jets (2-9) - Maybe Brian Schottenheimer was the one who turned Bill Belichick in. He must have been too preoccupied with Belichick's movie collection to devise a valid gameplan for the Cowboys. Check out some crazy stats in my Thanksgiving Wrap-Up to check a crazy stat detailing his ineptness.
26. Carolina Panthers (4-7) - 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, Tom Brady and Brian Billick thus far. OK... I'm here with David Carr! David, I know you're coming off a loss to New Orleans. What do you need to work on to get into the win column? "Huh!? Who's there!?" Ummm... no one... I'm just interviewing you right now for my site. "Ahhh! Help me! They're coming!" Who's coming? "The guys on the other team! Ahhh!!! They're going to kill me! Please help me!" Dude, you're not even playing football right now. "Please don't hurt me! Noooo!!!!"
25. Kansas City Chiefs (4-7) - It wouldn't have been a great NFL season without a Herman Edwards fourth-quarter gaff. I was so relieved to see him eschew a 41-yard field goal to go for it on fourth down with a few minutes remaining in regulation.
24. Baltimore Ravens (4-7) - I'm not really sure why Brian Billick is sticking with Kyle Boller and not giving Troy Smith a shot. Well, why don't we do some oddities on why Billick continues to play Boller: 1:10,000 - Boller has incriminating photos of Billick (that's to obvious.) 2:1 - Boller can throw 60 yards from his knees, so he has to be good! 4:1 - Billick's magic mirror on the wall, the one that tells him he is fairest and smartest of them all, advises him to. 8:1 - Boller and Billick are actually married, and the latter's life will be hell if he doesn't play Boller. No dinner or nighttime fun can motivate any man!
23. Minnesota Vikings (5-6) - It's amazing that the Vikings are 5-6. I refuse to believe it. If they somehow make the playoffs, I'm going to gather all my belongings and investments, and bet them all on the opposing money line. Think the Detroit Lions with Barry Sanders. Like the Vikings, they only had one good offensive player, and consequently was blasted every postseason.
The Rest: 11. Philadelphia Eagles (5-6). 12. Washington Redskins (5-6). 13. San Diego Chargers (6-5). 14. Denver Broncos (5-6). 15. Tennessee Titans (6-5).
16. Houston Texans (5-6). 17. Arizona Cardinals (5-6). 18. Buffalo Bills (5-6). 19. New Orleans Saints (5-6). 20. Detroit Lions (6-5). 21. Chicago Bears (5-6).
22. Cincinnati Bengals (4-7).
So Big Ben, who has struggled all year on the road despite the competition and is banged up, is just going to magically find his groove and torch us? Anything's possible, but using the Seahawks game, which was ages ago and came shortly after we had to adjust after the Jamie Collins trade, is pretty dumb on your part.
USED DRAFT-TEK , WALTERS, DRAFT-SITE rankings as a general guide. Been trying to catch as many college games as possible. HUGE Game for Clemson over Alabama raising the stock of several players.
SR bowl,Combine, & Pro-days will be fun to watch.