GMEN HQ – Power Rankings Review

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We made it! It’s back! The NFL season has finally begun. If you’re a Giants fan, like me, you’re probably just getting over the nauseating feeling that was the Giants week 1 loss to Dallas. If you can stomach it, you’ll find here, the first entry into a weekly column where we’ll be analyzing, breaking down and probably flat out ripping some of the more notable power rankings put forth by some of the major sports providers.

These columns operate best with feedback (what’s better than a little message board banter?) So make sure to post your thoughts. If you think I’m crazy for what I write (you’re wrong)…kidding. But seriously, let me know.

Now, on to the rankings. We’ll start with the mother-ship…

ESPN – (3)
“Are they the team that went 9-7 in the regular season? Or are they the team that tore through the playoffs and won the Super Bowl? Their QB and pass rush say the latter.”

The Giants show up at #3 in ESPN’s first power ranking of the year, trailing New England and Green Bay. It’s pretty reasonable; I don’t think you’ll find too many people that will argue with this. Lets remember that Green Bay was 15-1 before losing to the Giants in playoffs. New England, has added some depth on the defensive side of the ball and added a nice piece to the offense in Brandon Lloyd. However, no doubt in my mind the Giants would beat both of these teams in the Playoffs again, if they get there..

CBS Sports – (2)
“I know people say they snuck into the playoffs and got hot at the right time. Maybe so, but this team is better. It has to be. It will be hunted.”

….It will be hunted, some strong words there from Pete Prisco, but he’s absolutely right. They’re the defending champs. Add on top of that the division they play and you’re left with a Giants team that people are going to play their best football against week in and week out. This ranking again, right on par, no way the Giants should be out of the top 5 in any power ranking.

Sports Illustrated – (3)
“Out of respect for the resilience and ridiculously clutch play of the defending Super Bowl champs, I’m starting them out in the high-rent district of our top five. I just don’t expect them to stay there all year. Remember, this was a 7-7 team entering Week 16 of 2011, and New York wound up being outscored in the regular season. There’s talent galore, but these Giants won’t be able to rely on the furious fourth-quarter comeback as a blueprint to victory this time around.”

This is off. The Giants belong at the top in Power rankings not only, because they’re the reigning champs but because they still have arguably the best past rush in the NFL. Arguably the most clutch QB in Eli Manning and head coach who is going to put them in a position to win, week in, and week out.

Fox Sports – (8)
“People always worry about complacency for any reigning Super Bowl champion. I have two words for them: Tom Coughlin. Still, we have to remember this team was merely 9-7 a year ago. Unlike last year there are no longer any questions about Eli Manning being an ‘elite’ QB.”

I used to think Brian Billick was a pretty smart football guy, and then I saw this ranking. I read over his analysis for every team, multiple times, its no longer a question to me why he hasn’t gotten another head coaching job…Just to let you know who was ranked in front of the Giants;

(7) Falcons – Matt Ryan has won enough playoff games to justify this, right? (6) Texans – They lost two of their best defensive players, and come one, are they really good enough to be at number 6? (5) Ravens – One of the only things that makes the Ravens what they are is that they play in a watered down, aging AFC. Newsflash…They’re starting QB is still Joe Flacco. Newsflash…Terrell Suggs still has a nagging injury. Newsflash…Ray Lewis is collecting social security. I’ll skip. But not Numero Uno. Billick has got the “dynasty” the “dream team” if you will, that’s right he has the Philadelphia Eagles. What a joke. Granted he does reference if Vick can stay healthy. Not only is that a big if, but I’m not so sure that even if Vick is healthy all year that they would be the best team on the field against a number of NFC teams.

See, the NFC has some pretty dominant defensive lines and pass rushers (Peppers, Pierre-Paul, Ware) and these players have the ability to limit Vick’s ability to create.

Now, we’ll keep in perspective these power rankings were out before the season even started. Check back each week to see where the Giants stack up against other NFL teams, in the eyes of the experts.

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