2007 NFL Preseason Power Rankings News Article: Preseason pro football power rankings by FootballLocks.com. NFL preseason rankings.
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Preseason NFL Power Rankings
After Training Camp, 2007
Ranking the NFL Prior to Week 1
NFL Preseason Power Ratings – 8/11/2007

Preseason NFL Power Ranking By FootballLOCKS.com’s Editors
View NFL Power Rankings Methodology



NFL Team


Comments August 11, 2007




  Between regular season & postseason play last year, the Super Bowl XLI champs went an amazing (8-1) against teams that made the playoffs.
Can Manning and the Indianapolis offense once again compensate if their defense is poor against the run? Or did the defense truly turn a corner during the 2007 postseason?
Regardless, the Colts earned the right to be ranked #1 coming into the 2007 – 2008 season, until another team can legitimately pass them by.




  The Patriots surrendered an 18 point lead to the Colts in the 2007 AFC championship game… This year New England adds Adalius Thomas, Randy Moss, Donte’ Stallworth, and Wes Welker… This was a Patriots team that had wins over the Bears and the Chargers (playoffs) last year. And probably would have hung on to beat the Colts if Rodney Harrison hadn’t missed the game, or if Richard Seymour hadn’t been injured in the early going of the AFC title game.




The Bears return a great defense and have made the switch to Cedric Benson in the running game. But what stood out most about Chicago’s loss in Super Bowl XLI to us was Rex Grossman struggling to throw in the rain… While Manning made it look easy. What you ask can the Bears do to improve their chances of winning the big one? Here’s a gutsy answer.
Perhaps another switch is in order. How about adding a quarterback who can throw the rock in inclement weather.
But who?
Perhaps a certain quarterback who was recently benched with his team tied for 1st at the time, while also leading a top 5 ranked offense (averaging 352 yards and 29.4 points a game, at the time of his benching). We’re talking about a quarterback who threw for the second most yards in Cowboy’s history only two seasons ago behind an injury riddled offensive line… He’s even thrown for more career yards than Peyton Manning.
You guessed it. The still not grey haired, supposedly retired, Drew Bledsoe.
On the downside, the Bears would give up more sacks per game. Last season Rex got sacked approximately 1.5 times per game. Meanwhile, Bledsoe while in Dallas got sacked 3 times per game. Checking my math that’s 1.5 more sacks per game. Shouldn’t be that big a deal for a team with this defense.




  Baltimore had a great 2006 season going (3-1) against playoff teams, including a win over the Chargers and a win @New Orleans. The season ended with a disappointing playoff loss to Indianapolis, in which the Ravens’ top ranked defense successfully kept the Colts out of the end zone.
This year Baltimore’s defense has lost Adalius Thomas. On the plus side the offense has gained Willis McGahee, whom we view as an upgrade over Jamal Lewis. Last season McGahee averaged more yards per carry compared to Lewis versus a tougher schedule.




The Chargers had an amazing regular season run which came to a heartbreaking end in a divisional playoff loss to the Patriots. How will the Chargers perform with Norv Turner as head coach?
The answer should come very quickly as San Diego opens the season versus Chicago, and @New England.




New Orleans comes into 2007 off an amazing season, playing against one of the toughest schedules in the NFL… With a dynamic offense and game turning special teams, the Saints can score with the best of them. However, as far as the NFC South goes, expect stiffer competition from a Carolina team that was held back by injuries last season.




In a testament to the great coaching of Reid, Philadelphia made the playoffs last season with McNabb injured, falling on the road to New Orleans in the divisional playoffs. Of course with McNabb healthy, the Eagles can beat virtually any team on any given day.




  The bad news? Jay Cutler threw for over 190 yards twice in five starts and it took the defenses of San Francisco and Arizona to get it done.
The good news? Fortunately the rest of the Broncos’ team is solid as a rock. Especially with the additions of Dre’ Bly, Sam Adams, Daniel Graham, and Travis Henry.
We’re still scratching our heads about the decision to bench Jake Plummer (who played against a much tougher strength of schedule last year compared to Cutler, and had a great record as the Broncos’ quarterback). But even with an untested QB at the helm, the Broncos should be a contender in 2007.




  Throw last season’s (8-8) record out the window. The Jaguars beat five playoff teams last season including; a 44-17 thrashing of the Colts, a 41-0 shutout of the Jets, a 13-6 win over the Eagles (with McNabb), the Giants, and the Cowboys… The Jags also played to within 3 points of New England, and shutout the defending champs (Steelers) early in the year before the Steelers’ season got out of hand.
So how on earth did Jacksonville not make the 2007 playoffs?
Answer- they got swept by the Texans, lost at Tennessee, lost at Buffalo, and lost at Washington.
We don’t expect the Jags to go (2-6) on the road again this season. We expect them to play more like the (12-4) Jags of 2005… A team which they resembled on several occasions last season.




  Repeat of the above, throw the (8-8) record out the window. The injury bug bit the Panthers in 2006 including; Steve Smith, Jake Delhomme, and Deshaun Foster on offense, and Mike Rucker and Dan Morgan on defense… Yet through it all the Panthers surrendered the second fewest points in the NFC last season.
Make no mistake about it. The Panthers should be considered contenders in 2007. Solid coaching and a core of players that have been to the NFC title game two of the past four seasons.




  You guessed it… Throw last season’s (8-8) record out the window. We think Roethlisberger’s poor play during his first three games of 2006 was understandable given his motorcycle accident, not to mention facing two dynamite defenses on the road in the first two weeks, @San Diego and @Jacksonville.
We’re also willing to excuse Big Ben getting dominated by the Ravens’ defense in 2006 (what QB and offense wasn’t!?)
Losing Joey Porter hurts. But at least the Ravens lost Adalius Thomas at the same time. And that might actually be a proposition this Pittsburgh team would happily accept… At least the offense might accept it.




  Throw the (10-8) record out the window. Last season Seattle took the Bears to (OT) in Chicago, in the divisional playoffs, after beating the Cowboys in the wild card round without their starting corners playing.
Not to mention, the Seahawks played a good portion of the season without Alexander and Hasselbeck. In 2007, Seattle should have no problem staying in the hunt for a division title in the defensively weak NFC West.




Keep the (9-8) record. The Cowboys and Romo losing at home to a Detroit team that was (2-13), losing at home to the Eagles without McNabb (Bledsoe was 2-1 against the Eagles with McNabb folks) and then to a Seahawks team missing its starting corners (Romo 189 yards passing), and somehow everything is considered great on the ranch.
But the reality is including the playoff loss the Cowboys are on a three game losing streak, and have lost 4 out of their last 5 games overall.
The Cowboys may have seemed formidable last season with Romo at the helm instead of Bledsoe, but Romo didn’t exactly play the toughest defensive schedule upon taking over. He had the luxury of playing against a (3-7) Bucs team playing its 3rd game in 11 days, as well as the porous defenses of the Redskins, Cardinals, regular season Colts, and Lions… If Romo plays well against the schedule the Cowboys have this season, then the Cowboys will be looking good. But until then the jury is still out.




The best thing to happen to Cincinnati in the offseason?
Adalius Thomas and Jerry Porter leaving the AFC North.




The worst thing to happen to the Jets in the offseason?
Adalius Thomas and Jerry Porter coming to the AFC East.




  Surprise, surprise. Miami had some moments in 2006, beating Chicago and New England.
They add Joey Porter to their already stellar defense. And add Trent Green to a much ailing offense.
This Dolphins’ defense should be good enough to give most opposing teams absolute fits. And that should lead to a bunch of wins for the fish.




  The Trent Green era officially comes to an end in Kansas City. Thankfully Herm Edwards has been doing everything possible to improve the Chiefs’ defense.




  With the additions of Drew Bennett and Randy McMichael, this St. Louis offense could actually be good enough to partially compensate for their weak defense, perhaps to the point of challenging for a division title in the defensively weak NFC West.




The Giants lost to the Eagles in the wild card playoffs and then lost Tiki to retirement.
However, Brandon Jacobs seems the real deal, and Ruben Droughns has had past success.




  Arizona’s offense is loaded with talent. But the line needs to play better in order to become a power, and Fitzgerald & Boldin need to stay healthy for a full season together.
More importantly, the Cardinals gave up 389 points last season so it’s the defense that needs to show the most improvement.




In a division with strong offensive teams, it’s Washington’s defense that will probably hold them back. Last season the Redskins lost 4 games in which they scored 22 or more points.




San Francisco made some nice offseason additions. But the 49ers’ schedule is much tougher this season than last. As a result, it may be difficult to improve upon last season’s record.
Additionally, before calling the 49ers a playoff possible team, let’s see the defense improve after giving up 412 points last season.




Vince Young made Tennessee formidable in the second half of 2006. But the Titans lost running back, Travis Henry, who had a great season. Furthermore, the Titans gave up 400 points in 06, and will now be missing Pacman Jones from the defense in 07… As a result, the Titans open low in the preseason rankings.




  Somehow the Texans swept the Jaguars in 2006. They also scored a week 16 win over a Colts team that already had the division locked up. These wins may be difficult for Houston to repeat in 2007.
Meanwhile, Matt Schaub may prove to be a great quarterback, and Ahman Green may have something left in the tank, but the offensive line wasn’t exactly Houston’s strong point in 2006. And the schedule is very tough in 2007.




  In 2007 the Buccaneers should be more stable at quarterback with Garcia. But that Tampa Bay defense seems a far cry from the force it used to be.




  The Falcons were unable to beat top teams in 2006 going (0-6) against teams that made the playoffs. John Abraham must stay healthy as the defense will need to step it up in 2007 as it looks like Atlanta’s offense will be run by Joey Harrington rather than Vick. As a result, the Falcons open low in the preseason rankings.




Buffalo lost several key, experienced players during the offseason- especially from the defense. As a result the Bills are taking a hit in the preseason power ratings. The Bills’ schedule is very tough in 2007. It looks to be a long road ahead this year.




  The Packers went .500 last season, but got a free win week 17, against the Bears, and played a very light schedule overall.
With a much tougher schedule ahead in 2007, this version of the Green Bay Packers couldn’t afford to take any steps back in the offseason. But that’s what they did.




  Minnesota went (6-8) last season with Brad Johnson at the helm, and (0-2) with Tarvaris Jackson under center… Until the Vikings prove they can win with Jackson at quarterback, it’s a step back in the power ratings.




  The Browns’ defense took a major step back last season compared what it had accomplished in 2005, and it cost them in the record department.
Additionally, the offense sputtered in 06 as it did in 05. As a result, it should be no surprise to see the Browns hanging out in the bottom section of the 2007 preseason power rankings.




  The Lions went (2-8) versus teams that failed to make the playoffs last season thanks to giving up a whopping 398 points.
Yet on draft day there was that incredible receiver talent again…
Question… How many great receivers do you need on a team to win in the NFL?
Answer… Actually to win in the NFL you usually need to have a good defense.




  The Raiders lost 9 games last season by double digits. And in April they made a splash in the draft. But before moving them out of the cellar on the basis of a draft pick, let’s see it translate to a victory or two first.

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NFL Power Rankings From Preseason, 2007, Above
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