Spinnaker’s 2009 NFL preseason power rankings


With summer in the air, football might be the furthest thing from sports fans’ minds. But as training camps start, so do preseason predictions.

When trying to predict how teams stand at the beginning of the season, there are several changes from the previous season to take into account. With every start of training camp there are new faces in new places and looming questions that follow them.

Wide Receiver Terrell Owens has taken his show from Dallas to Buffalo, bringing with him his legacy of verbally attacking his quarterbacks on every team he has been on. If he starts attacking Bills Quarterback Trent Edwards, the Bills will be in serious trouble. Owens probably will learn fast that Buffalo, N.Y. is not as exciting as Dallas, Texas and his attitude will drop accordingly.

Quarterback Jay Cutler forced his way out of Denver and ended up in Chicago. Cutler will have a huge chip on his shoulder as the public eye is wary of his seemingly poor attitude in his exit from Denver. Look for the Bears to start strong and lean on Cutler.

The New York Jets acquired Cornerback Lito Sheppard from the Philadelphia Eagles and snatched up Linebacker Bart Scott from the Baltimore Ravens. The Jets look like a team with on a mission with new Head Coach Rex Ryan and their improved defense. The Jets lost Quarterback Brett Favre, but got University of Southern California star Mark Sanchez to replace him. The Vikings have been toying with the idea of signing Brett Favre off retirement, but it is up to Favre. As we have seen though, Favre always gets the itch to play once June or July comes along. Odds are he will again.

Jacksonville Jaguars long-time Running Back Fred Taylor left Jacksonville to sign with veteran-laden New England Patriots. The Jaguars signed a legend of their own in Wide Receiver Torry Holt, formerly of the St. Louis Rams. Holt will try to fill a gaping hole in the Jags receiving corp left by Matt Jones and Jerry Porter. If their defense can improve and Jags Quarterback David Garrard can rebound from a down year in 2008, the Jags could make a strong showing.

In this first installment of the Spinnaker’s 2009-2010 NFL power rankings, the Steelers claim the top spot by virtue of being the defending champions. They have almost the same team as the one that won the Super Bowl last season. The Patriots claim the second spot because they have a healthy Tom Brady, and returning with Receivers Randy Moss and Wes Welker. They set offensive records galore in their first season together; imagine what they could do with more experience.

The Giants are number three because they will be fielding a balanced team led by a Super Bowl-winning quarterback. If they can replace Plaxico Burress, they will be serious contenders. The Eagles take number four by fielding what looks to be an NFL-leading offense. As long as Quarterback Donovan McNabb stays healthy, the Eagles should contend in a tough NFC East. The Ravens round out the top five because of their consistently elite defense. If second-year Quarterback Joe Flacco grows as he should, they could challenge the Steelers in the AFC North.

Here are the rest of the 2009 preseason power rankings:

  1. Steelers (12-4)
  2. Patriots (11-5)
  3. Giants (12-4)
  4. Eagles (9-6-1)
  5. Ravens (11-5)
  6. Colts (12-4)
  7. Falcons (11-5)
  8. Chargers (8-8)
  9. Cardinals (9-7)
  10. Bears (9-7)
  11. Jets (9-7)
  12. Titans (13-3)
  13. Panthers (12-4)
  14. Cowboys (9-7)
  15. Vikings (10-6)
  16. Saints (8-8)
  17. Dolphins (11-5)
  18. Redskins (8-8)
  19. Bills (7-9)
  20. Texans (8-8)
  21. Packers (6-10)
  22. Bengals (4-11-1)
  23. Jaguars (5-11)
  24. Seahawks (4-12)
  25. Broncos (8-8)
  26. 49ers (7-9)
  27. Chiefs (2-14)
  28. Buccaneers (9-7)
  29. Browns (4-12)
  30. Raiders (5-11)
  31. Rams (2-14)
  32. Lions (0-16)