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Stadium Food Power Rankings: Week 17 Recap

Stadium Food Power Rankings: Week 17 Recap

Updates on The Daily Meal's quest to find out which NFL teams have the best stadium food

At the end of the regular season, we have ten wins and six losses in our predictions.

You may have heard, football and food lovers, of our Stadium Food Power Rankings series, the battle to find out which NFL teams have the best stadium food. Instead of a coin toss, we flipped burgers. Instead of flags, we counted health code violations. And instead of referees... well, there was us.

Each week we featured at least one marquee matchup of two NFL rivals. Prior to game day, we assessed the food offerings available at each team's stadium, measured them against a select list of criteria, and decided which franchise did a better job of keeping their fans satisfied… gastronomically speaking.

At the end of the regular season, our results matched up with the games' ten out of sixteen times. Here's the breakdown:

(Win) Week 8: Indianapolis Colts vs. Tennessee Titans
(Win) Week 9: Denver Broncos vs. Cincinnati Bengals
(Win) Week 10: New Orleans Saints vs. Atlanta Falcons
(Loss) Week 10: Detroit Lions vs. Minnesota Vikings
(Win) Week 11: Carolina Panthers vs. Tampa Bay Buccaneers
(Win) Week 11: Houston Texans vs. Jacksonville Jaguars
(Loss) Week 12: New England Patriots vs. New York Jets
(Win) Week 13: Pittsburgh Steelers vs. Baltimore Ravens
(Loss) Week 13: San Francisco 49ers vs. St. Louis Rams
(Win) Week 14: Arizona Cardinals vs. Seattle Seahawks
(Loss) Week 14: Kansas City Chiefs vs. Cleveland Browns
(Win) Week 15: Green Bay Packers vs. Chicago Bears
(Win) Week 16: Buffalo Bills vs. Miami Dolphins
(Loss) Week 17: Oakland Raiders vs. San Diego Chargers
(Loss) Week 17: Philadelphia Eagles vs. New York Giants
(Win) Week 17: Washington Redskins vs. Dallas Cowboys

With the regular season now at a close, this is our plan. We're going to rank each stadium, determining our own ultimate winner. We're also going to the rank most outrageous food, the most mouth-watering, and well, whatever else we deem appropriate to rank. And don't forget, the Super Bowl is fast approaching, and we won't be lacking in food and drink coverage—highlighting everything from party recipes, to where to eat, drink, and watch, to the skinny on New Orleans for both enthusiasts, and those who want nothing to do with football. Basically, we will have everything, so don't go too far.

And don’t forget to give us feedback! We judged based on the following criteria, and we take these matchups seriously: Unique Items/ Variety/Presentation; Cleanliness/Preparation/Health Code Violations; Allergy-Minded Options; Healthy/Organic Options; and Most Popular Items.

Tyler Sullivan is The Daily Meal's assistant editor. Follow her on twitter @atylersullivan.


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Coach Gruden talks 2021 offseason & Alex Leatherwood sits down with Lincoln Kennedy

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Parking Lot Personalities of Tampa Bay Tailgating

If you’ve never been to Raymond James Stadium, perhaps you’re intimidated by its massive size. Maybe you’re not sure where to go for your particular needs or interests. Keep reading to find out which tailgating lot best fits your personality.

Lot 1: Serious Chefs

No spot around the stadium can you find more serious chefs than in Lot 1. This lot is absolutely packed with portable grills, portable skillets and enough tasty food to feed a small country. No pre-packaged foods here — look for Ray-Jay chefs cooking up handmade burgers, ribs, skillet fajitas, roasted potatoes, corn on the cob, rice and beans, grilled sweet potato wedges and pots of sausage and peppers. If you fancy yourself an amateur chef, pull into Lot 1 for your tailgate and swap recipes with some of the other novice cooks on the lot.

Lots 2, 3 and 4: Family Friendly

If you have kids, Lots 2, 3 and 4 might be your best option. These lots are lined with families relaxing and having a good time. Kids are often seen playing cornhole, tossing footballs and throwing Frisbees while parents either join in or relax in the sun. Bring the kids — they may even make some new friends!

Lots 5, 6 and 7: Latecomers’ Lots

Tailgate parties do happen here, but most people pull in late just before the game. If you’re planning on skipping the tailgate and just enjoying the game, you can count on these lots to provide open parking spaces. If you plan on partying, get to the stadium early so you have your pick of the lots. Remember, the lot gates open three and a half hours before kickoff, which is 9:30 a.m. for most games.

Lot 6D: Large Parties

The tailgate parties in 6D are absolutely huge, many of them hosting 20 people or more crowding under big tents. No one in this lot is shy either. Guests from various parties intermingle and party the day away. If you have a large group of people attending your tailgate, 6D will be able to accommodate them.

Lots 8 and 10: Gamers’ Lots

Lots 8 and 10 are right next to each other, so it’s no surprise that game lovers spread out across both spaces. Here you can find all kinds of games including cornhole, ladder golf, Frisbee, Texas horseshoes and even beer pong.

Lot 9: Young Adult Zone

Lot 9 definitely attracts the most young adults — young men and women who seem to be in their college years or early- to mid-20s. Beer pong tables are scattered throughout the lot and no one is shy about being crazy. This may not be the best place for families with young children, but if you love being wild and crazy, this lot’s for you.

Lots A and C: Disabled Parking

Just because you or someone in your family has a disability, doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy a good tailgate party. Pull into these lots, unload your grill and cook up some tailgate fun.

Lot B: Season Passholders Only

Unless you hold a season pass, parking in Lot B is off limits. If you do hold a season pass, enjoy this nice open lot right next to the front of the stadium.

Lot D: Dance Party

If you love dancing, both D and 6D, located on the south side of the stadium, is where the action lies. A live DJ mixes beats and the music can be heard throughout most of the area. Put on your dancing shoes and get crazy.

Lot 14: Eclectic Crowd

This lot is the biggest lot around the stadium, even larger than the stadium itself. It comes as no surprise that a lot this huge would attract a mix of personalities, including those from visiting teams. Some tailgaters turn up the music and dance, some toss a football around and others power up a generator and watch TV. If you’re lucky, you might just catch a marching band like this one from Palmetto Ridge High School all the way from Naples. Visit Lot 14 for Buccaneers party fun.


2016 NFL Power Rankings Week 9: Raider Nation Has Returned

It was another exciting week of action in the NFL. We had several games come down to the wire and there were even a couple exciting overtime games.

The action got started off with a Color Rush game in which the Jacksonville Jaguars clashed with the Tennessee Titans in what turned out to be a blow out. The next action was a contest overseas with the Cincinnati Bengals and Washington Redskins. It was a game in which it seemed no one wanted to win. And no one did. It was the second week in a row with a game to end in a tie.

The Oakland Raiders and Tampa Bay Buccaneers also went to overtime and they threatened to end without a real result. That was, of course, until quarterback Derek Carr threw a game-winning touchdown. It was a remarkable day from him as he threw for 513 yards and four touchdowns, announcing to the world that he is for real.

Those were just three of the games that shook things up in the NFL in Week 8. Here we look in depth at how each team did as well as how they all stack up now that we are just about half way through the 2016 NFL season with the newest edition of our NFL Power Rankings.

Oct 30, 2016 Cleveland, OH, USA Cleveland Browns quarterback Josh McCown (13) drops back for a pass during the first quarter against the New York Jets at FirstEnergy Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Scott R. Galvin-USA TODAY Sports

Not only are the Cleveland Browns bad, but they may be historically bad when all is said and done. After losing to the New York Jets the question comes up about whether or not they can get any wins the rest of the season.

Many believed this one was quite possibly the most “winnable” game left on their schedule as New York came in at just 2-5. Only one team has ever gone 0-16, which would be the 2008 Detroit Lions. Cleveland is threatening to do just that.

In all fairness, it’s not all due to issues in their control. They have seen an alarming number of injuries at the quarterback position as they have had to turn to rookies Cody Kessler and Kevin Hogan for long stretches. They’ve also been forced to use quarterback-turned-receiver Terrelle Pryor, Sr. at his former position as well during the first half of the year.

The good news foe them is that Josh McCown is back, and he is hands-down their best option at the position. The bad news is, he still has some incredibly bad people around him. After dropping a lead and then ultimately the game in Week 8, 0-16 is looking more possible by the second.

October 23, 2016 Santa Clara, CA, USA San Francisco 49ers head coach Chip Kelly (right) argues with NFL side judge Boris Cheek (41) during the fourth quarter against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Levi

31. San Francisco 49ers (31)

The San Francisco 49ers are a bad football team. They benched one bad quarterback (Blaine Gabbert) for another bad quarterback (Colin Kaepernick) and the results were the same. They simply keep losing. Not only is the quarterback play bad, but their offensive line can’t block which is limiting the effectiveness of the one talented player they have on offense, running back Carlos Hyde.

Their wideouts not only don’t fit what they try and do, but they just aren’t very good either. Their top guys are Torrey Smith (who they may be trying to trade) and Jeremy Kerley. Those names don’t scare any secondaries in the league. Moreover, their defense is no longer the staple it once was in the NFL and thanks to head coach Chip Kelly’s fast-paced (and bad) offense, they end up on the field way too much.

It’s obvious now that the Kelly experiment isn’t working in the NFL. Either he needs to change his approach or head back to the college ranks. The players are bad, but he isn’t helping them succeed. Things are looking quite obvious in that this season isn’t turning around for the 49ers.

Oct 20, 2016 Green Bay, WI, USA Chicago Bears quarterback Jay Cutler (6) watches team warm up before game against the Green Bay Packers at Lambeau Field. Mandatory Credit: Benny Sieu-USA TODAY Sports

30. Chicago Bears (30) — Play on Monday Night

The Chicago Bears have had an awful start to the 2016 season. Their offense has been rather inept and they then suffered the loss of their starting quarterback, Jay Cutler. From that injury, though, a bright spot started shining through as former Houston Texans starter Brian Hoyer was showing signs of being good enough to replace the aloof Cutler.

Wouldn’t you know the Bears’ luck, Hoyer then saw a nasty broken arm end his year. Now they will be turning back to a healthy Cutler on Monday Night Football. As fate would have it, the first game back for Cutler is a divisional game against arguably the best defense in the game, the Minnesota Vikings. Considering the fact that he was quite abysmal against anyone prior to his injury that’s kept him out, this could be even worse for the veteran quarterback in Chicago.

The 1-6 Bears have their work cut out for them as the 5-1 Vikings are coming in angry after suffering their first loss of the season in Week 7. It’s probably safe to place some money down on these guys dropping to 1-7 on the season. Injuries (beyond Cutler even) and a general lack of talent don’t bode well for this team.

Oct 27, 2016 Nashville, TN, USA Jacksonville Jaguars quarterback Blake Bortles (5) leads the team onto the field before the game against the Tennessee Titans at Nissan Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports

29. Jacksonville Jaguars (29)

What an ugly, ugly game that was for the Jacksonville Jaguars on Thursday Night Football. They not only have one of the worst Color Rush uniforms in the game, but also one of the worst teams. They have no running game whatsoever and their passing game is turning into nothing but garbage time numbers. Blake Bortles (the garbage time stat king) had numbers on Thursday that looked great. He threw 337 yards and three touchdowns on the night.

His stats from that game are so deceiving as the Jags were down 27-0 at one point in the third quarter. From that moment on the Titans were playing a prevent style defense in which they just wanted to keep Jacksonville at bay. That’s when Bortles and the rest of this team loves to “shine.” They turned on their offense and started padding their stats. But it’s all hollow. This is not a good football team.

Bortles was also the leading rusher for the losing team with 22 yards. For some perspective, Titans running back DeMarco Murray had a long run on the night of 22 yards. It looks like head coach Gus Bradley’s seat went from hot to on fire.

Oct 30, 2016 Cleveland, OH, USA New York Jets outside linebacker Lorenzo Mauldin (55) and New York Jets defensive tackle Leonard Williams (92) celebrate Mauldin

Well a win is a win, so they can’t be upset to put a notch in that column. What they can be upset about is how hard it was for them to put the worst team in the NFL away. The New York Jets spent most of the day trailing the lackluster Browns. In the end they were able to sneak back into the game and eventually take the game with a score of 31-28.

Anytime that you need a comeback in the second half to beat the worse team in football, it’s not going to make you look particularly great.

They gave up 341 yards passing to Josh McCown while their own starting quarterback, Ryan Fitzpatrick was just 16-of-34 on the day. Shockingly, that wasn’t the QB duel of the century that everyone was expecting. Who could have predicted…?

The running of Matt Forte and Bilal Powell was the lone bright spot for the Jets. Forte had 25 runs for 82 yards and two touchdowns. His yards per carry average wasn’t great, but he proved he still can be a workhorse who gets the tough yards. Powell was the more explosive player, recording 76 yards and a score on just six carries. They did find something in receiver Quincy Enuwa, but at just 3-5 on the season there are still a lot of issues for a team that won ten games last year.

Oct 30, 2016 Charlotte, NC, USA Carolina Panthers quarterback Cam Newton (1) in the press conference after the game. The Panther defeated the Cardinals 30-20 at Bank of America Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports

After a 1-5 start, it looked like the defending NFC Champions were in a full-blown free fall. Their offense was stagnant and their defense was pretty much non existent. Then they woke up on Sunday in Week 9. Quarterback Cam Newton started connecting on some deep passes to receiver Kelvin Benjamin and the defense looked like themselves again.

They started the scoring off on the first drive of the game with a defensive touchdown thanks to a fumble recovered and returned by the great Thomas Davis. From there, the Panthers just kept harassing Cardinals quarterback Carson Palmer the whole game. They also happened to slow down running back David Johnson, who had been running wild all season until the rebirth of the Panthers stout D.

Thanks to their division being one that is pretty tight in terms of records, Carolina isn’t out of things in the NFC South. No one would have thought it after their horrendous start to the season, but if they can have the same team that showed up this weekend show up for a few more games in a row, they could stand a chance.

Speaking of showing up, Cam Newton not only showed up to his press conference following the win, but he actually even stayed! What progress.

Oct 30, 2016 Indianapolis, IN, USA Indianapolis Colts quarterback Andrew Luck (12) walks off the field after a game against the Kansas City Chiefs at Lucas Oil Stadium. Kansas City defeats Indianapolis 30-14. Mandatory Credit: Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports

Nothing is worse than watching a talented player wasted on a terrible franchise. Quarterback Andrew Luck is a once-in-a-lifetime talent stuck with arguably the worst owner and general manager in the NFL. Such is life when you’re the quarterback for the Indianapolis Colts, but it’s unfortunate to have to watch a player of Luck’s talent deal with it.

Somehow their owner escaped much criticism for off-field stupidity and their general manager somehow keeps his job despite putting awful players around Luck. Their gameplan now is as bad as it was during the Peyton Manning years: just do whatever and hope the quarterback wins games for us. It worked for Manning, but they most likely robbed him of several Super Bowls thanks to the continued fails of the Jim Irsay era.

On Sunday they once again saw what things are like when they expect Luck to do it all alone. They were blown out by the Kansas City Chiefs—a Chiefs team that was forced to bring Nick Foles into the fold, no less. It was ugly and will only continue to get uglier until new people are calling the shots.

Oct 23, 2016 East Rutherford, NJ, USA Baltimore Ravens defensive end Timmy Jernigan (99) runs with the ball after recovering a fumble during the second half at MetLife Stadium. The Jets defeated the Ravens 24-16. Mandatory Credit: Ed Mulholland-USA TODAY Sports

After three wins to start the season, the Baltimore Ravens have come back to earth with four-straight losses before being on their Week 8 bye. The hard part is figuring out if they’re really good and had some bad breaks or if they’re really bad and started out with some good breaks.

They won against the Buffalo Bills by six, the Browns by five, and then the Jaguars by two. Since then they continued the trend of being i close games. However, their ultimate fortunes changed with a one-point loss to Oakland, a six-point loss to the Redskins, a four-point loss to the Giants, and their biggest defeat of the year was an eight-point game against the Jets.

Their offense is explosive at times. They will hit deep passes off the arm of Joe Flacco into the hands of Mike Wallace. Then they will go several plays in a row where it looks like no one is on the same page.Running back Terrance West will run all over teams and look like a Pro Bowl player at times as well. Then he also comes out and can’t find a lane to run through and gets stuffed. However, there’s nothing consistent.

To sum them up, if they had a few more bounces and they could be 7-0. They also could have had a few more bounces and be 0-7. Just a strange, strange team.

Oct 23, 2016 London, United Kingdom Los Angeles Rams coach Jeff Fisher walks off the field after game 16 of the NFL International Series against the New York Giants at Twickenham Statdium. The Giants defeated the Rams 17-10. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

The Los Angeles Rams did something in England that no NFL team has ever done. They lost a game on a potential game-winning drive when their quarterback, Case Keenum, decided to punt the ball to Giants cornerback Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie with his arm.

Apparently Keenum was trying to throw a fade pass to receiver Brian Quick, but his throw was the ugliest lob ever. The pass floated in the air for what felt like an eternity and Quick looked like he had no intention of making a play for it. The Giants defender could have called a fair catch on the play and it probably would have been granted.

Now they go into the bye week sitting with a losing record (not a shocker because head coach Jeff Fisher always has a losing record). This week off should give them time to realize that if they want to compete at all in 2016, they need to play Jared Goff in favor of Keenum.

Keenum has proven that he can’t be the reason a team wins, but he sure can be the reason they lose. Goff will have some growing pains, but why put those pains off till next season when you know Keenum won’t take you anywhere anyway.

Oct 30, 2016 Tampa, FL, USA Tampa Bay Buccaneers cornerback Brent Grimes (24) gets called for pass interferenceance on Oakland Raiders wide receiver Amari Cooper (89) during the second half at Raymond James Stadium. Oakland Raiders defeated the Tampa Bay Buccaneers 30-24 in overtime. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

23. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (22)

This team still just feels like they should be better than they are. After a 30-24 overtime loss to a very good Oakland Raiders team the Bucs are now sitting at 3-4. Although they were almost 3-3-1 as this game came pretty close to being the third tie in the past two weeks.

Just like the Panthers though, they aren’t out of it in the NFC South, but they need to get going quick to avoid being done. The positive spin is they do have the potential on their roster to be a competitive team. Quarterback Jameis Winston looks like the real deal and receiver Mike Evans is one of the best in the NFL. Defensively they have a ton of young, talented players who should be able to make plays.

For whatever reason though they just haven’t put it all together. At this point it remains a mystery as to why they fired head coach Lovie Smith and promoted Dirk Koetter to his position from offensive coordinator. The results have not been any better and he isn’t finding anyway to unlock the team’s potential and turn them into consistent winners. Who knows what it’s going to take, but they do look just a flip of the switch away from making noise in the NFC, though.

Oct 23, 2016 Cincinnati, OH, USA Cincinnati Bengals tight end Tyler Eifert (85) against the Cleveland Browns at Paul Brown Stadium. The Bengals won 31-17. Mandatory Credit: Aaron Doster-USA TODAY Sports

What a bad way to end a pretty decent game. The NFL may now be forced to look into their overtime rules yet again since we had the first back-to-back weekends with a tie since 1997. It just seems so unsatisfying for a game to end without a winner, but the Bengals had their chances to get to .500.

Quarterback Andy Dalton threw an interception deep in Washington territory and also lost a fumble late in overtime after Washington missed a potential game-winning field goal. They just simply couldn’t get it done, and now they make their record look all weird thanks to a third slot in the win-loss column. The good news for them was wide receiver A.J. Green stayed sensational and they also had tight end Tyler Eifert looking like himself again with over 100 yards and a score.

They also are still in a rather weak division, so they aren’t out of it. The talent and potential for Marvin Lewis’ bunch is still there. However, they need to get things rolling sooner rather than later if they’re to avoid falling completely out of it.

Oct 30, 2016 New Orleans, LA, USA New Orleans Saints running back Tim Hightower (34) runs against the Seattle Seahawks during the second quarter of a game at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome. Mandatory Credit: Derick E. Hingle-USA TODAY Sports

New Orleans got the win against the favored Seahawks on Sunday by a score of 25-20. Seattle wasn’t at their best on Sunday, but that didn’t matter. Just because their quarterback, Russell Wilson, is running around on one leg doesn’t mean their win Sunday wasn’t hard. The Saints took the best shots that Seahawks defense had to give out and they left standing.

Their own defense did enough to get the win—and that’s not something you normally hear out of them. It also looked like head coach Sean Payton decided it was time to make people pay for mistakes.

After running back Mark Ingram lost a fumble early in the game, he never saw the ball again. Instead they decided to run it with Tim Hightower all day. It looked as though that was truly all about the fumble and had nothing to do with injury.

It will be interesting to see if that move inspires Ingram going forward to not only hold onto the ball, but also to play so well that the team feels like they can’t stand to take him off the field ever. Either way, the Saints are now more alive than ever in a winnable division as a winning streak could shake things up in a big way.

Oct 30, 2016 Orchard Park, NY, USA Buffalo Bills head coach Rex Ryan (left) and New England Patriots head coach Bill Belichick shake hands after the game at New Era Field. The Patriots beat the Bills 41-25. Mandatory Credit: Kevin Hoffman-USA TODAY Sports

Four-straight wins had the Buffalo Bills climbing up NFL Power Rankings. Now two-straight losses have them plummeting back down. They were bullied by running back Jay Ajayi of the Miami Dolphins for over 200 yards rushing last weekend and then that was followed up with them being bullied by Tom Brady of the New England Patriots. So that means that they can be exposed on defense by the pass, or the run. That’s not a great recipe for success.

Just a few weeks ago Buffalo shut the Pats out at home with third-string rookie Jacoby Brissett at quarterback. That obviously made Tom Brady mad to watch because on Sunday he looked like he was the older brother exacting revenge on a bully for a beating that happened behind his back. New England dropped 41-points on the Ryan twins, who are supposed to be defensive geniuses.

Granted, Buffalo was without their star running back in LeSean McCoy for this game. However, one player isn’t going to make the difference in a game where they were blown out. Moreover, Shady McCoy doesn’t play on the defensive side of the ball. Even eight weeks into the season, it’s hard to know what to make of the Bills. What we do know, though, is that they aren’t nearly as good as we thought just two weeks ago.

Oct 23, 2016 Atlanta, GA, USA San Diego Chargers defensive end Joey Bosa (99) celebrates a sack with outside linebacker Melvin Ingram (54) against the Atlanta Falcons in the third quarter at the Georgia Dome. The Chargers defeated the Falcons 33-30 in overtime. Mandatory Credit: Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports

They weren’t able to complete the sweep of the defending Super Bowl Champions. San Diego dropped an eight-point game to the Broncos, the same team they defeated earlier this month on Thursday Night Football. That game was an upset, which helped the Chargers move up in the NFL Power Rankings. The loss to Denver moves them down some, but not much because they stayed pretty competitive despite playing a better team.

Quarterback Philip Rivers is still explosive and can put points up in a hurry. Sure, they just had 19 on Sunday, but that was against perhaps the best defense in the NFL. Other bright spots for San Diego include the great play this year of second-year running back Melvin Gordon and a pair of exceptional rookies, defensive end Joey Bosa and tight end Hunter Henry.

Gordon has become a grind-it-out type of back who is getting the tough yards. He’s also developed into a weapon in the passing game, something he never did much of in college at Wisconsin. Bosa ended a long hold-out after being drafted third-overall and his penetration is proving he was worth the wait. As for Henry, he looks to be the second-coming of Antonio Gates in this offense.

Even with a five-loss record and at the bottom of the AFC West, it’s still hard to be too critical of this Chargers team.

Oct 23, 2016 Miami Gardens, FL, USA Miami Dolphins running back Jay Ajayi (23) runs against the Buffalo Bills during the second half at Hard Rock Stadium. The Dolphins won 28-25. Mandatory Credit: Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports

One of the biggest overreactions over the past few weeks has been the idea that running back Jay Ajayi will just continue his monster tear of back-to-back 200 yard games. Obviously that pace isn’t sustainable. That doesn’t mean his effectiveness isn’t, though, Ajayi is a great talent who excelled at Boise State and should have been drafted much higher then the fifth round last season. He also should have never started the season on the bench.

He was head and shoulders better than Arian Foster, who recently decided to retire. Foster being placed ahead of the younger Ajayi shows where the real issue for Miami is.

Their head coach, Adam Gase, may be in over his head if he kept such a talent benched so long. For those who say it’s because of Foster’s track record, remember that Gase also tried out Kenyan Drake (who was a backup in college) and Damien Williams before finally giving their best offensive weapon a chance.

Maybe Ajayi will have Gase coming out smelling like roses when it’s all said and done if he keeps torching defenses on the ground. However, don’t be fooled by that. This isn’t a good head coach from what we’ve seen thus far in Miami and he basically lucked into a productive offense by being forced to give Ajayi the rock.

Oct 30, 2016 Charlotte, NC, USA Arizona Cardinals quarterback Carson Palmer (3) looks to pass during the fourth quarter against the Carolina Panthers at Bank of America Stadium. The Panthers defeated the Cardinals 30-20. Mandatory Credit: Jeremy Brevard-USA TODAY Sports

Over the last two weeks things have looked progressively worse for the once feared Arizona Cardinals. After a beatdown of the New York Jets three weeks ago they looked like they were on pace to become the team everyone thought they should have been.

Instead they have gone the other way.

Last Sunday night they played in one of the least entertaining games ever, a 6-6 tie against the Seattle Seahawks. This Sunday they got smacked in the mouth by the Carolina Panthers, who had come into the game with just one win on the season and coming out of their bye week.

The final score ended up being 30-20, but that score is misleading. Arizona was destroyed in this game. Running back David Johnson couldn’t get going and quarterback Carson Palmer looked like a rookie rather than one of the older quarterbacks in the game.

Their defense struggled as well in this one. They had a hard time covering Kelvin Benjamin and Greg Olsen, which is understandable because those two are great. It’s just not the norm for these guys to struggle with anyone. Instead of finding their rhythm against a struggling team, the Cards helped may have helped the defending NFC Champions get their groove back.

Oct 27, 2016 Nashville, TN, USA Tennessee Titans running back Derrick Henry (22) celebrates after a touchdown run in the first half against the Jacksonville Jaguars at Nissan Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports

Thursday Night was a glimpse of how good this Tennessee Titans team can be. They finally got to .500 with their 36-22 win over divisional rival Jacksonville and did so in brilliant fashion.

Quarterback Marcus Mariota had surgeon-like precision with his 18-of-22 passing for 270 yards and two touchdowns. The field was opened up for him thanks to their two-headed monster at running back, DeMarco Murray and Derrick Henry. Murray gashed the Jaguars for 123 yards and a touchdown on 21 carries. Henry added another touchdown with 60 yard rushing on 16 carries as well as 37 yards on four catches.

If these two can keep churning out the yards, Tennessee could be a team to look out for in the AFC South race. They currently are sitting just one game behind the division leaders, the Houston Texans, but they can actually play on the road unlike the Texans.

Next week the Titans have another winnable game against the Chargers. They should be up for that thanks to the extra time allotted to them by playing on Thursday night this week.

Oct 30, 2016 Houston, TX, USA Detroit Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford (9) throws during the second half against the Houston Texans at NRG Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports

A win in Week 1 was followed up with three straight losses. Those three straight losses were then followed up with three straight wins. All of those games were one-score decisions, which when all that is added up it makes the Detroit Lions a hard team to figure out.

The one thing that seems sure about them is that they will keep scores close, and they did that again on Sunday. After falling behind 14-0 the Lions were able to get back into the game against the Houston Texans, but they just couldn’t do enough.

They fell to .500 on the season with a 20-13 loss on the road, ending their three-game winning streak. Offensively they looked lost at times, but their defense made things tough on Houston.

They threw for less than 200 yards on the day and the running backs were stuffed pretty much all game. Their next game is against the defensive powerhouse Minnesota Vikings, which doesn’t bode well for trying to avoid another losing streak. However, you never know what you’re going to get from Detroit, so you can’t rule out the possibility for an upset win in the division either.

Oct 29, 2016 London, United Kingdom Washington Redskins coach Jay Gruden (center) speaks flanked by defensive end Chris Baker (92), linebacker Ryan Kerrigan (91), receiver DeSean Jackson (11), receiver Pierre Garcon (88) and quarterback Kirk Cousins (8) during the NFL International Series Fan Rally at the Victoria House. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

14. Washington Redskins (15)

The Washington Redskins just can’t get out of their own way. They got 458 yards passing out of quarterback Kirk Cousins as well as 87 yards and a touchdown out of their backup running back Robert Kelley, who was filling in for an injured Matt Jones. Even with that offensive production, they couldn’t get a win in England, but instead settled for a tie. The biggest reason they couldn’t win was because of 15 penalties.

Every time they seemed like they were in position to get a W, they would get hit with a mindless penalty. They also had a makable field goal try, which Dustin Hopkins did make before Cincy called a timeout. Thanks to the pause in the game, Hopkins missed his next try and that was all she wrote.

It’s a disappointing way to end a game, but it’s not as bad as taking a loss. They head into the bye week now trying to figure out how to get back on track after following up a four-game winning streak with a loss and a tie in the past two weeks. With the Dallas Cowboys running away in the NFC East right now, though, they need to get things shored up immediately after the bye or they could be in trouble.

Oct 30, 2016 Houston, TX, USA Houston Texans quarterback Brock Osweiler (17) looks to the sideline during the fourth quarter against the Detroit Lions at NRG Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports

Why are the Houston Texans a decent team at home that finds ways to win, but an awful team on the road that looks like they’re made up of a bunch of guys who were cut from an NCAA team? Looking at their 5-3 record you would think things have been great for the defending AFC South champions. Nothing could be further from the truth.

All five wins have come on their home turf, mostly on the back of a tough defense. Quarterback Brock Osweiler hasn’t dominated any of those games, but has made enough plays to ultimately get the job done.

On the road he is different. The first-year starter looks indecisive and incapable of playing the position. They are 0-3 on the road and have five more contests away from home to finish the second half of the season. They are on a bye in Week 9, which could buy Osweiler time to find some rapport with his receivers. With the Titans starting to come on strong in the South, though, the Texans might need to find a sense of urgency in regards to figuring out how to become more consistent.

Oct 23, 2016 London, ENG Head coach Ben McAdoo of the New York Giants celebrates with cornerback Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie (41) of the New York Giants after his interception during the fourth quarter of the game between the Los Angeles Rams and the New York Giants at Twickenham Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Steve Flynn-USA TODAY Sports

Sometimes when you watch the New York Giants, you can’t help but wonder how they have a winning record. Other times when you watch them you wonder how they don’t have a better record. They have had several games in which it looked like they would be blown out, but then they come back and get a big win. Then they will have games where it looks like things are all in hand and then the bottom falls out.

The bye week came at a great time for them as rookie head coach Ben McAdoo can regroup his guys and get the second half of the season headed in the right direction. There’s talent on both sides of the roster, especially after the front office went all in on revamping the defense in free agency this past offseason. Even still, they have to find a way to maximize that talent if they want to become a more consistent football team.

Despite their struggles at times, they’re in a good place at 4-3. But thanks to the sudden rise of talent in the NFC East, they need to be better to keep up and make the playoffs. In the second half of the season, it’ll be interesting to see what McAdoo and the Giants have in store.

Oct 23, 2016 Pittsburgh, PA, USA Pittsburgh Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin gestures from the sidelines against the New England Patriots during the second quarter at Heinz Field. Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

11. Pittsburgh Steelers (11)

The Pittsburgh Steelers had their bye in Week 8 and there may not be a team that could have used it more than them. Not just because they’ve dropped two-straight games, but also because they are currently waiting for their starting quarterback to return to the field.

Ben Roethlisberger was injured in their loss to the Miami Dolphins in Week 6. In Week 7 their backup Landry Jones did all he could with 281 yards and a touchdown, but they dropped one to the New England Patriots. However, Jones showed in relief of Roethlisberger last season that he’s not the player you want to rely on to be a consistent leader under-center. For the Steelers to stay atop the AFC North, they’re going to need to figure things out—or to get their starting quarterback into the fold sooner than expected coming off of his knee injury.

Big Ben says he is feeling better every day and is hopeful for a Week 9 return. Even if he can’t get ready for their game against Baltimore next week, the week of rest for him with no risk of dropping another game is great for both the team and the player. Now they have to hope that their losing streak doesn’t continue and ultimately put them in a tough spot.

Oct 30, 2016 Arlington, TX, USA Philadelphia Eagles head coach Doug Pederson on the field prior to the game against the Dallas Cowboys at AT&T Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports

It looked for a minute like the Philadelphia Eagles were about to steal a road win and take over first place in the NFC East. Then they just started falling apart.

With their Sunday night game against Dallas well in hand, they started trying to throw too many short passes, included several behind the line of scrimmage. At one point late in the game they had a bevy of options on second down following a beautiful eight-yard run by running back Darren Sproles. They threw a pass well behind the line of scrimmage and set them up for a third-and-long when it was sniffed out.

The coaching staff also let the clock run down at the end and go to overtime rather than force the Cowboys into potentially punting. Doug Pederson is a rookie coach and he made a few moves in this last game to remind us all.

Still, the arrow is pointing up for this team thanks to their solid rookie quarterback, Carson Wentz, and their tough to deal with defensively. Even though their 3-0 start feels like ages ago as they now sit at 4-3 on the season, Philly is a team with the talent to make things happen. Especially if they add another offensive weapon at the trade deadline, the Eagles will be just fine.

Oct 30, 2016 Atlanta, GA, USA Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers (12) reacts against the Atlanta Falcons in the fourth quarter at the Georgia Dome. The Falcons defeated the Packers 33-32. Mandatory Credit: Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports

Green Bay’s reign as one of the top five teams in the NFL is looking to be done. For too long, the team has tried to win simply by drafting skill players. They need to start focusing some on their lines though. There’s talent all over the offense, but quarterback Aaron Rodgers just doesn’t get comfortable in the pocket.

It seems like as soon as the ball is snapped he’s trying to find somewhere he can stand still and deliver a pass. They’ve also suffered a ton of injuries all over the place, which hasn’t helped them at all. On Sunday they once again had to try to win on the shoulders of quarterback Aaron Rodgers. He was spectacular and did all he could. In the end it just simply wasn’t enough. Their defense didn’t have any answers for the passing attack of the Atlanta Falcons. Yes, that was partially do to the aforementioned injury-bug, but you have to give Rodgers some kind of help.

They are falling behind in the NFC North race really fast all of a sudden. At this point, earning a Wild Card postseason berth seems like the likely option. If they don’t get healthy or start to help out Rodgers (or both) soon, though, even that might start to fall out of their reach—as shocking as that would be.

Oct 30, 2016 Atlanta, GA, USA Atlanta Falcons wide receiver Mohamed Sanu (12) reacts after a game against the Green Bay Packers at the Georgia Dome. The Falcons defeated the Packers 33-32. Mandatory Credit: Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports

Atlanta should be sitting at 6-2 or 7-1. This team got absolutely robbed by a couple of no-calls late in their two recent losses. The worst of which is still the arm bar that receiver Julio Jones was put in by Seahawks cornerback Richard Sherman a couple of weeks ago. Had the refs called that obvious pass interference, they would have been in field goal range and had a chance to pick up the victory.

Another no call late cost them against San Diego last week. The fans started to worry after those two losses though that Atlanta may be back to their previous ways of starting out the season hot, but falling apart after that.

Sunday may have been enough to convince people that 2016 is different. They stopped the bleeding with a one-point win in a thriller against Green Bay. However, they now have a quick turnaround as they face Tampa Bay on Thursday Night Football in a couple of days. After the two no-call-fueled losses, this is a must-win game for the Falcons. The race in the NFC South could start to heat up and dropping a game on Thursday in the division would not be great for their momentum or for their comfort-level as division-leaders.

Oct 30, 2016 New Orleans, LA, USA Seattle Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson (3) stiff arms New Orleans Saints outside linebacker Craig Robertson (52) in the second half at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome. The Saints won, 25-20. Mandatory Credit: Chuck Cook-USA TODAY Sports

Russell Wilson is hurt. Whether he wants to admit it or not, he is not himself right now and it’s showing on the field. He’s having a hard time getting going and he looks to be struggling to move when he scrambles. Their defense is still one of the toughest in the league, so they should be able to stay atop the suddenly weak NFC West.

However, there’s got to be a question about whether Wilson could stand to rest up his injured leg. The good news for them is running back Thomas Rawls could be back next week. His return could give the offense a huge, and much needed, shot in the arm as they try to separate from everyone else in their division.

Despite preseason expectations, the NFC West isn’t looking nearly as strong at the top as it was supposed to be. It’s the Seahawks’ to lose at this point. However, losing games like Week 8’s defeat at the hands of the New Orleans Saints isn’t going to do this Seattle team any favors. They have to find ways to be effective and not put as much pressure on the hobbled Wilson.

Oct 30, 2016 Indianapolis, IN, USA Kansas City Chiefs receiver Chris Conley (17) tries to elude Indianapolis Colts corner back Rashaan Melvin (30) in the second half at Lucas Oil Stadium. The Chiefs won 30-14. Mandatory Credit: Thomas J. Russo-USA TODAY Sports

Kansas City is a deep team. They lost their starting quarterback twice in their game against the Indianapolis Colts, but that didn’t slow them down one bit. Instead Nick Foles came in and looked better than some team’s starting quarterbacks (sorry Los Angeles, looks like he wasn’t the problem). Maybe it was him reuniting with head coach Andy Reid, or maybe it was the porous Colts defense.

Who knows for sure. One thing you can say for sure, Kansas City has a stubborn defense and they’re in a good spot even though they are in an incredibly competitive division. A division that is all over our top ten. What helps Kansas City in this race is their balance. They’re good in all phases of the game and, thanks to Tyreek Hill, they suddenly have a deep threat as well.

And with all of this, it also appears like the Chiefs are getting closer to having one of their biggest defensive weapons back in the fold in Justin Houston. He’s returned to practice and you have to believe that he’ll be suiting up in the coming weeks as he gets back to 100 percent. Throwing in one of the league’s best pass-rushers on an already great defense could have Kansas City looking more like a contender than not moving forward.

Oct 30, 2016 Denver, CO, USA Denver Broncos cornerback Lorenzo Doss (37) celebrates with inside linebacker Todd Davis (51) after a play in the fourth quarter against the San Diego Chargers at Sports Authority Field at Mile High. The Broncos won 27-19. Mandatory Credit: Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports

How is this formula still working? The Denver Broncos have been stagnant on offense all season, but they keep winning. They’re not terrible, but they also aren’t getting the most out of their big receivers. Instead they keep going with the short plays that keep their defense off the field and fresh.

Then the guys on that side of the ball take over and dominate anyone they need to. Chargers quarterback Philip Rivers spent all day avoiding pressure, which is the norm for whoever Denver plays in a given week.

Who are we to judge, though? This is what they did last season with Peyton Manning at the end of his career. He couldn’t push the ball down the field, but they won a Super Bowl playing it safe and counting on the defense. It seems like this style of play should run it’s course eventually. Yet, it still hasn’t.

That said, Denver is now going to be put to the test in Week 9. They have an AFC West matchup with the exceptionally dangerous and red-hot Oakland Raiders that will essentially determine the leader in the division. We’ll see just how well their defense-first formula works in a matchup of this nature.

Oct 30, 2016 Tampa, FL, USA Oakland Raiders quarterback Derek Carr (4) runs with the ball in the second half against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Raymond James Stadium. The Raiders defeated the Buccaneers 30-24 in overtime. Mandatory Credit: Jonathan Dyer-USA TODAY Sports

Raider Nation is alive and well. Quarterback Derek Carr keeps making teams look foolish for letting him fall into Round 2 of the NFL Draft in 2014. He’s one of the best young passers in the game and his 513 yards were insane to watch. Speaking of looking foolish, how bad do the 49ers look for not getting the same results out of receiver Michael Crabtree that Oakland has.

The scary part about this 6-2 team though is that they still found a way to win despite an NFL record 23 penalties in the game. They kept their composure despite making bad choices and found a way to win. They will be deadly if they ever clean that stuff up. They will be even better if they can start to improve at home. They’re 1-2 at home on the season and 5-0 on the road. Raider Nation travels well.

As stated when talking about the Broncos, the Raiders too will be tested in Week 9 with that AFC West matchup for the division lead. However, it’s clear that Oakland is 100 percent for real in the 2016 season. There are holes and inconsistencies on the defense, but you can’t argue with 6-2 and the way that his offense has been producing and coming through in clutch situations.

Sep 25, 2016 Charlotte, NC, USA Minnesota Vikings head coach Mike Zimmer looks on during the first half against the Carolina Panthers at Bank of America Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jeremy Brevard-USA TODAY Sports

3. Minnesota Vikings (2) — Play Monday Night

In Week 7 the Minnesota Vikings were dealt their first loss of the season. They were on the road and facing the team that traded them quarterback Sam Bradford earlier in the year.

The game was ugly as Bradford and Carson Wentz, the Eagles rookie quarterback who replaced him, were having a battle to see who could turn the ball over the most times. That turnover-fest hadn’t been the norm for the Vikings, but they still could use a self-esteem building game. That’s exactly what it looks like Monday Night Football will be as they travel to Chicago to face the 1-6 Bears.

Bradford shouldn’t have the same issues against the soft Bears defense that he had the previous week against the motivated Eagles. They also should be able to handle missing Jerrick McKinnon, who won’t be able to make the game. It would take some huge breaks going Chicago’s way in order for the Vikings to drop their second in a row.

With the Packers struggling to find consistency, the NFC North looks to be the Vikings’ to lose. If they can right the ship coming off of their first loss and continue to win with grinding, defense-first football under Mike Zimmer, they should have no problem winning on Monday and getting the ship pointed north.

Oct 30, 2016 Arlington, TX, USA Dallas Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott (4) runs for a 7 yard touchdown in the first quarter against the Philadelphia Eagles at AT&T Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports

Talk about giving your fans a heart attack. The Dallas Cowboys spent most of Sunday Night Football looking like they were about to surrender their lead in the NFC East while also ending their five-game winning streak.

They fell behind by a couple of scores against the Philadelphia Eagles on a night when rookie quarterback Dak Prescott looked like a rookie for the first time. The prayers for Tony Romo to become healthy were growing louder.

Then Prescott settled down in the fourth quarter. he started to move the ball and ended up hitting Dez Bryant for a game-tying touchdown. Then in overtime he made a very Romo-esque type of play to throw a game winning touchdown to Jason Witten.

After a one-point loss to start the season, Dallas has won six-straight, but no one wanted to buy into them. NBC color commentator Cris Collinsworth kept referencing wanting to see Prescott play from behind. Well, he did. And even though he had a rough outing, Dallas still won. If Romo is healthy next week for their game in Cleveland things could get very interesting in Big D.

Oct 30, 2016 Orchard Park, NY, USA New England Patriots center David Andrews (60) snaps the ball to quarterback Tom Brady (12) during the second half at New Era Field. The Patriots beat the Bills 41-25. Mandatory Credit: Timothy T. Ludwig-USA TODAY Sports

With quarterback Tom Brady sidelined for the first four games the New England Patriots looked like serious contenders and they went 3-1. Since Brady has returned to the lineup they look absolutely unbeatable. Brady and company have reeled off four straight wins to get to 7-1 on the season.

They now head into the bye week on the heels of a thorough beatdown of the team that stole a win from them a few weeks ago while Brady was making Ugg Boots commercials about doing nothing.

The Pats went off early and headed to the half with a 24-10 lead and never let up from there. The scary part? New England hit more than 40 points for the first time this season which means they’re actually getting better each and every week.

Tight end Rob Gronkowski is back to full speed, receiver Julian Edelman is improving, and his fellow receiver Chris Hogan is turning into quite the playmaker. On top of all this, their most dynamic running back Dion Lewis could be returning to the lineup soon.


NFL Power Rankings: Week Seven

There was a ton of movement in the weekly rankings this week. The one constant in the NFL seems to be the Patriots while the 49ers are legit and the Ravens might be the biggest threat to the Patriots in the AFC.

1. New England Patriots (+0)

A week after the Jets looked good and had hope for the first time all season, the Patriots completely shut them down and destroyed them on Monday night football. The Patriots are now 7-0 and just keep on rolling.

2. San Francisco 49ers (+3)

This 49ers defense has given up ten points over the last three games. That is a recipe for success. Even though Jimmy Garoppolo has thrown eight touchdowns and eight interceptions but hey San Francisco is 6-0. Nobody could have possibly predicted this but the 49ers are in the driver seat in the NFC West.

3. New Orleans Saints (-1)

Drew Brees will be practicing this week and there is hope that he will be able to play Sunday. Teddy Bridgewater did all that New Orleans could have asked for, going 5-0 as the starter. None of their next three games come against teams that are .500 which could mean a 9-1 start for the Saints.

4. Green Bay Packers (-1)

The Packers dropped a spot but only because of the start the 49ers have had. Aaron Rodgers was clicking on all cylinders against the Raiders throwing for five touchdowns and adding one more score on the ground. They head to Arrowhead to play the Matt Moore led Chiefs as they look to improve to 7-1.

5. Buffalo Bills (+1)

The Bills just keep on winning. Whether or not you believe in Josh Allen and the Bills, it does not matter, they are now 5-1 with games against the Redskins, Dolphins, Broncos, and Steelers left. A nine-win season is absolutely in the fold and with that defense, double-digit wins and the playoffs are a real possibility.

6. Indianapolis Colts (+4)

A week after beating the Chiefs in Arrowhead, the Colts won an important divisional matchup with the Texans in Lucas Oil Stadium. Their next four are against the Broncos, Steelers, Dolphins, and Jaguars which is friendly, to say the least.

7. Minnesota Vikings (+5)

Hello, Kirk Cousins. In the weeks after weirdly apologizing to Adam Thielen, Cousins has thrown for 976 yards, ten touchdowns, and just one interception and the Vikings are predictably 3-0 in those games. A 6-2 start is likely with the Redskins up next.

8. Baltimore Ravens (+7)

Lamar Jackson is pretty good at football. The way the 2018 class of quarterbacks has performed he is easily separating himself as the best playmaker in the class, and it was once again on display, this time, in Seattle in a win over the Seahawks in hostile territory. Baltimore is running away with the NFC North and seems like the biggest threat to New England.

9. Seattle Seahawks (-5)

The Seahawks lost their second game of the season in a close one, but sitting at 5-2 they are certainly still one of the best teams in the NFC and the NFL. Russell Wilson threw his first interception of the season which ended up being a Marcus Peters but expect Wilson and the Seahawks to bounce back.

10. Kansas City Chiefs (-3)

The Chiefs kicked off week seven against the Broncos on Thursday night with the biggest news of the season. The NFL world was stunned when Patrick Mahomes was injured on a quarterback sneak on an already bad leg but the good news for Kansas City is that they still improved to 5-2, the bad news is that Matt Moore will be the starting quarterback for the next few weeks.

11. Houston Texans (-2)

Tough loss for the Texans on the road in a game with big divisional implications, and in the process lost their number two receiver in Will Fuller but we all know the potential they have with Deshaun Watson under center.

12. Dallas Cowboys (+2)

That was a huge win for the Cowboys. They now hold the top spot in the division and got back their confidence after dropping the past three. The win was big right before their bye week.

13. Los Angeles Rams (+3)

The Rams got back on track with a complete beatdown of the awful Falcons. The Rams got a loss from Seattle to help climb back in the NFC West but the 49ers just keep on winning. They host Cincinnati next week with a chance to keep things going.

14. Detroit Lions (-6)

Detroit has had a tough stretch. They’ve lost their last three games but each of those losses has been close. The Lions are a scrappy team and should be in wild-card hunt come December but they will need to start winning close games. With the news that Kerryon Johnson is going on injured reserve only makes things worse.

15. Chicago Bears (-4)

Chicago has one hole on their roster, and it is the most important position in football. Mitchell Trubisky passed for 251 yards and two scores this past Sunday which isn’t bad numbers, but 132 of those yards and both scores came on the last two drives while already down 36-10. Trubisky will always be haunted by the fact that Mahomes and Watson were taken just a few picks later.

16. Carolina Panthers (+1)

Carolina had their bye week and will take their 4-2 record into San Francisco for a matchup with the undefeated 49ers.

17. Philadelphia Eagles (-4)

That was a huge loss for the Eagles. The winner took first place in the division, but more importantly, the Eagles are starting to lose excuses for these losses. As the losses pile up they may become even more important if the Eagles have to battle for a wild card spot.

18. Arizona Cardinals (+2)

Arizona won three games through all of 2018, and have now won three straight after their win over the Giants. The sad news is that six of their last nine games are against the Saints, Rams twice, Seahawks, and 49ers twice. There are still winnable games against the Buccaneers and Steelers but the optimism ends there.

19. Cleveland Browns (+0)

The Browns 2-4 start was put on pause during their bye week, but they are back in full swing with a matchup in Foxborough. After the way the Patriots looked in a beatdown of the Jets, Baker Mayfield might be in big trouble.

20. Oakland Raiders (-2)

The Raiders were absolutely torched by Rodgers and a passing attack that was without Davante Adams. They responded by trading away a promising young defensive back in Gareon Conley. After doing battle with the Packers, the Raiders head to Houston for a tough contest with another stud quarterback in Watson.

21. Jacksonville Jaguars (+0)

Jacksonville got back in the win column after having lost after losing two straight games. The Jaguars pulled away in the fourth quarter but the game was close throughout. The way the Jets looked against the Patriots, Jacksonville might be able to string together back to back wins.

22. Pittsburgh Steelers (+0)

Pittsburgh had their bye week and have a chance to improve to 3-4 with a matchup against the Dolphins up next.

23. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (+0)

Tampa Bay also had their week during week seven and will be back in action next week against the Titans.

24. Tennessee Titans (+2)

The Titans squeaked out a win by the slimmest of margins. They will be looking for a new franchise quarterback when the offseason rolls around but for now, Ryan Tannehill looked competent running the offense and may provide some hope for Tennessee.

25. Denver Broncos (-1)

The Broncos were at home and were within four points when the Chiefs lost Mahomes for the game but still ended up losing 30-6. The Broncos now sit at 2-5 and have been as bad as it gets.

26. New York Jets (-6)

Well, how about that performance. A week after giving New York hope, they completely threw it all away and did not show up under the national spotlight against the Patriots. The Jets weren’t expected to win but the performance they put on the field was completely embarrassing.

27. New York Giants (-2)

This offensive line has done Daniel Jones no favors. Nate Solder and the line gave Jones zero time all game and made it hard on him. The Giants kept it close all game and had a one-score game on their hands but blew it with a messed up protection Jones fumbled it and gifted the Cardinals field goal range and the game.

28. Los Angeles Chargers (+0)

That’s it. The Chargers season is over, and with it goes the title aspirations that they’ve had, year in and year out, with Phillip Rivers under center. The ending of the game against the Titans was one of the weirdest you’ll ever see.

29. Atlanta Falcons (+0)

What is wrong with Atlanta. The Falcons were down 27-3 going into the fourth quarter and showed zero signs of life once again. The terrible start could continue with their next two games coming against the Seahawks and Saints.

30. Washington Redskins (+0)

Washington is right there with Cincinnati and Miami for the title of the worst team in the NFL. They hung in there with the undefeated 49ers in an ugly football weather game but did not get anything going on offense and were blanked. The Redskins fall to 1-6 without many positives to look towards.

31. Cincinnati Bengals (+0)

Cincinnati gave the impression that they would be a competitive team when they just barely lost to the Seahawks in week one, but have now rattled off six straight losses after week one. They will absolutely be in the market for a quarterback when April comes around.

32. Miami Dolphins (+0)

The Dolphins are still the worst team in the league. Old man Ryan Fitzpatrick gave Miami life and had them up 14-9 and in the redzone to start the third quarter, but in Fitzpatrick fashion threw a redzone interception. Miami is now 0-6, with a matchup against the Steelers coming up on Monday night.

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NFL Power Rankings Week 17

The Chiefs escaped Arrowhead stadium with a narrow win over Atlanta. Kansas City scored a season-low 17 points and needed a surprise missed FG from the Falcons to win. After solidifying a win, the Chiefs have now won 10 straight and 23 of their last 24 dating back to last season. The AFC will be going through Arrowhead Stadium.

Next: vs. LAC

The Packers produced a championship effort on the defensive side of the football. Their defense has been a huge question mark and the league’s top scoring offense along with the league’s top rusher were coming to the frozen tundra. The Packers answered the bell holding the Titans to an anemic 14 points on just 260 total yards. They generated two takeaways and helped Green Bay get one step closer to clinching the number one seed.

For the first time since 1999, the Buffalo Bills swept the New England Patriots. And they did it in convincing fashion winning 38-9 on Monday Night. Josh Allen added on to his MVP case with 320 yards and four touchdowns, three of them going to Stefon Diggs. The Bills are in a position to bench their starters week 17 if coach Sean McDermott chooses to do so.

Next: vs. MIA

Alvin Kamara produced a historic performance against Minnesota on Christmas. The dual-threat back only had two career 100-yard rushing games going into this one – he finished with 155 yards and tied an NFL-record 6 rushing touchdowns. It’s the most rushing scores in an NFL game since Ernie Nevers accomplished the feat 91 years ago.

The Seahawks stifled the Rams to win their first NFC West title since 2016. Seattle currently holds the third seed and can attain either of the top two seeds going into the last week of the regular season. Seattle has seen a changing of the guard becoming more defensive-oriented and running the football more efficiently. Seattle has allowed 12.2 points per game in their last five:

Jamal Adams: "To me, we're the best defense in the league. You can quote that. And we haven't even played our best football yet, that's the scary part."

&mdash NFL Update (@MySportsUpdate) December 28, 2020

The Ravens victory over the Giants was never in doubt. They won by two touchdowns and completely dominated from start to finish. They gashed a stout Giants front for 249 rushing yards and have the look of the potent 2019 Ravens offense. Thanks to losses by Cleveland and Indianapolis, Baltimore now holds the sixth seed in the AFC. With a win over Cincinnati next week, the Ravens will lock up a wildcard spot in the playoffs.

Everything seemed to be aligning perfectly for Tennessee. Divisional foe Indianapolis blew a 24-7 lead against a cold Steelers team and Tennessee was in a perfect position to win their first AFC South title since 2008. It was snowing and about 20 degrees with the league’s number one rusher in Derrick Henry against one of the league’s worst rushing defenses. However, the Titans fell flat only producing 14 points as their defense was absolutely torched against MVP frontrunner Aaron Rodgers. The Titans still control their own destiny and can lock up the AFC South with a win over Houston in week 17.

One of the NFL’s longest playoff droughts came to an end on Saturday as the Bucs cruised past a decimated Lions squad. After beating down on Detroit, Tampa Bay locked up their first playoff berth in 13 years. Thanks to the Rams loss, the Bucs control their own destiny to lock up the fifth seed in the NFC and play the eventual NFC East champion in round one.

Next: vs. ATL

The Steelers come-from-behind win over Indianapolis meant so much more than just any other win. They ended a horrid 3-game skid, and locked up their first AFC North title in three years. It was extremely rewarding because in the first 35 minutes, it looked like the same Steelers we’ve seen the past month. They continued to exhibit an inability to run the football and the offense lacked any creativity. However, something clicked in the second half. Big Ben delivered a myriad of intermediate and deep throws that have largely been nonexistent and the receivers came up with some big-time plays. The Steelers go into week 17 with the chance to get some much-needed rest for their starters.

After handling the Patriots on Thursday Night Football, the Rams had the look of an eventual NFC West champion and a Super Bowl contender. Two brutal games later and the Rams may miss the playoffs – Jared Goff has been at the forefront of the criticism. It’s been about a year since Jared Goff signed an extension for a record-setting $110 million guaranteed and he has plateaued. If the Rams lose to Arizona while Chicago beats Green Bay, Los Angeles will miss the playoffs.

Next: vs. ARI

The Dolphins playoff hopes were slipping right in front of their eyes – they turned their playoff dreams to journeyman Ryan Fitzpatrick. In about 50 minutes of playing, first round rookie Tua Tagovailoa produced a meager 94 yards through the air. Head coach Brian Flores made the dicey call of turning to Fitzpatrick who generated 182 yards and 13 points in three drives of work. The Dolphins currently hold the AFC’s fifth seed and have a chance to lock up a wildcard berth at Buffalo in week 17.

The Browns nightmare came to fruition – down two offensive line starters and their top four receivers, the Browns offense was completely halted. The running game was nonexistent and Cleveland was forced to pass much more than they would’ve liked. The Browns are currently holding on for dear life for the AFC’s last playoff spot win over Pittsburgh in week 17 and they’re in.

Next: vs. PITT

The Colts were executing their plan perfectly – they built up a 17-point lead early in the second half against a dead Steelers team. 21 unanswered points later and the Colts meltdown materialized. After a Ravens win, they are now on the outside looking in with 10 wins. Going into week 17, they’ll go up against the Jaguars who’ve locked up the #1 overall pick. Their only win? Against Indianapolis in week one.

Next: vs. JAX

This has been a tale of three seasons for Chicago. In the first season, they started 5-1 and looked like a contender in the NFC North. Then it was followed by six consecutive losses as it seemed inevitable that Matt Nagy was on his way to unemployment. Yet, Chicago has managed to win their last three and is holding onto the seventh spot in the NFC. The only thing in their way? A date with the Green Bay Packers – beat them and they’re back in the playoffs after a one year hiatus.

Next: vs. GB

The Cardinals seemed to be right back on track winning their last two and they had a golden opportunity to win over a decimated 49ers squad. The duo of head coach Kliff Kingsbury and QB Kyler Murray produced one of their worst games of the season. The Cards only converted 25% of their third downs scoring a season-low 12 points. They are now on the outside looking in heading into a do-or-die game against the Rams

The Raiders had a chance to keep their already slim playoff hopes alive while playing spoiler against Miami. They were 19 seconds away from building off last season’s 7-9 campaign and having a chance to finish over .500 in week 17. The Raiders have dealt with a ton of injuries and COVID cases but that’s no excuse in the NFL. With this heartbreaking loss, the Raiders now move to 4-12 in the months of November and December in Gruden’s three years.

Thanks to the Ravens dominant performance over the Giants, the Football Team had a chance to lock up the division in week 16. What once seemed like an improbable feat, all Washington needed was a win over a hapless Carolina squad. Nevertheless, Washington was without signal caller Alex Smith for another week as Dwayne Haskins continued to struggle. After the game, Washington officially cut ties with Haskins altogether:

Washington will be in the same position next week against Philadelphia – win and you’re in.

The Patriots offense continued to be a huge problem as they cemented their first losing season since 2000. Cam Newton had a nice touchdown run in the first half but it wasn’t enough to keep up with Josh Allen and Buffalo. He was benched for backup Jarrett Stidham in the second half.

Next: vs. NYJ

Although the 49ers are stumbling to the finish line at 6-9, head coach Kyle Shanahan has been dealt a pretty tough hand. A year off a near Super Bowl victory, it’s easy to be disappointed as a 49ers fan about how the 2020 season has gone. But Sunday was a perfect reminder that this year has been one of Shanahan’s better coaching jobs. With C.J. Beathard under the helm, the 9ers scratched and clawed past the Cardinals in a stingy NFC West showdown. The 49ers need to figure out the signal caller position but they’ll be back to being contenders in 2021.

Next: vs. SEA

In Joe Judge’s first season as head coach, the young coach is learning that the season is a marathon. He seemed to be righting the ship in the correct direction winning four straight in the middle of the year and taking control of the NFC East. However, the Giants have lost their last three and they haven’t been particularly close. The Giants have had a point differential of -47 in their last three and are only scoring 8.7 points per game in that span. Despite all of that, their playoff hopes are still very much alive. Win against Dallas and Philadelphia beats Washington and they’re in.

Next: vs. DAL

In Mike Zimmer’s seven years, their performance on Christmas may have just been their worst defensive effort in his tenure. The 583 yards allowed were the most in his head coaching stint while giving up an NFL record 6 rushing touchdowns to Alvin Kamara was more salt on the wound. With the loss, the Vikings are officially out of playoff contention where the Vikes have missed the postseason in two of the last three years and four of Zimmer’s seven seasons.

This was a nice win to have for a disappointing Chargers season. Justin Herbert officially set the NFL record for the most touchdown passes in a rookie campaign with 28. Herbert has been a lone bright spot producing one of the greatest rookie seasons in recent memory. Not too long ago, the Chargers came off one of the franchise’s more embarrassing losses being shut out by the Patriots at home 45-0. Three weeks later, and they’ve won their last three all by one possession each. Will it be enough to save Anthony Lynn’s job?

I’m not sure there’s been a more dramatic turnaround that isn’t talked about than in Dallas. Many writers were quick to criticize the Mike McCarthy hiring in the early part of the season when they looked broken. Nevertheless, the Cowboys have won their last three with a +51 point differential. They have an opportunity to completely flip the script and win the NFC East next weekend with a win over New York and a Washington loss.

The Eagles became the only team in the division that was mathematically eliminated from playoff contention going into the final week of the regular season. Early on, everything seemed to be clicking for Jalen Hurts and the Eagles as they cruised out to a 14-3 lead. It seemed like head coach Doug Pederson was about to do it again: the Eagles were going to be a win away from another unlikely playoff berth. Instead, Andy Dalton and the Cowboys steamrolled over the defense as the offense completely stalled out in the second half.

Next: vs. WAS

In a year of frustrating twists and turns for Denver, Sunday may have to take the cake. They’ve lost several key cornerstone pieces of their defense throughout the year from Von Miller, Jurrell Casey, and most recently A.J. Bouye. The Broncos had one of their best offensive games in terms of total yardage (396) but they only finished with one touchdown. Jerry Jeudy’s rookie nightmare campaign continued as he only caught six of his 15 targets which included a staggering five drops. Draft season can’t come soon enough for Broncos fans.

Next: vs. LV

This offseason will be a turning point in Houston’s short history as a franchise. They had some short-lived success winning four of the previous five AFC South titles but nothing materialized into legitimate playoff success. They’ve hit some home runs in the draft including guys like J.J. Watt and Deshaun Watson (oh…and DeAndre Hopkins) but in large, this core is old, overpaid and underperforming. The magnitude of the hirings of the next GM and head coach in Houston cannot be overstated.

Next: vs. TENN

The Panthers played spoiler on Sunday ruining Ron Rivera’s chance to lock up the NFC East against his former employer. Carolina still currently holds a top ten pick heading into the final week of the regular season. It’ll be interesting to monitor if they’ll still be in the running for one of the top three quarterbacks in the 2021 NFL draft.

Next: vs. NO

The 2020 Atlanta Falcons are truly a one-of-a-kind. They fell to the Chiefs 17-14 thanks to an unlikely pull from kicker Younghoe Koo to lose the game in its’ final seconds. The Falcons fell to 4-11 with a -1 point differential on the season. They are a flawed roster that needs some sort of revamp but they also have a lot to offer a new GM/HC. Going into week 17, Atlanta currently holds the 4th pick.

Thanks to Brandon Allen and Samaje Perine, the Bengals outlasted Houston 38-31. After their win, Cincinnati no longer possesses a top three pick at the moment. Zac Taylor is finally seeing signs of progress attaining his first winning streak in his two year stint in Cincinnati. I’m sure the Bengals would love to cap off their season with a three-game winning streak and eliminating their divisional foe, Baltimore for the playoff picture.

Next: vs. BAL

The Lions didn’t have much of a chance heading into Saturday’s matchup against the Buccaneers. The Lions were without several of their coaches including interim head coach Darrell Bevell. The Lions lost QB Matthew Stafford early on and the romp was on. Tom Brady didn’t need to log a snap in the second half because of how lopsided this one was. Detroit will end their long and tiring season next week against Minnesota.

Next: vs. MINN

With another win, the Jets locked up the second overall pick in the 2021 draft regardless of what happens in week 17. Joe Douglas will have a huge decision on his hands. Does he elect to move forward with Sam Darnold drafting the consensus top non-QB in the draft in Penei Sewell? Does he go with Justin Fields or Zach Wilson? Or does he trade back? It’ll certainly be one of the more intriguing draft storylines to keep track of in the offseason.

Jaguars fans dreams officially came true – they locked in the first overall pick and will inevitably select generational QB Trevor Lawrence with that selection. In the event that head coach Doug Marrone loses his job, the head coaching vacancy in Jacksonville becomes one of the more attractive landing spots heading into 2021.Next: @ IND


Best Of Tampa Bay Weekend: Bucs, Bulls, Hippies & Back-To-School Fairs

We&rsquove got the scoop on all the events that are guaranteed to help you blow off your work week stress. There&rsquos something for everyone this weekend including the Bucs first home game, Hippie Fest, AAA ball & fireworks plus, free back-to-school fairs. Here&rsquos the complete rundown on what&rsquos shaking in Tampa Bay for weekend of Aug. 17 – 19.

Tarpon Springs Hippie Fest & Food Truck Rally
Saturday Aug. 18 | Hours: 4pm – 9pm
Downtown Tarpon Springs and the Sponge Docks
Website: Facebook

It’s the 43rd anniversary Woodstock and to celebrate you can channel the inner hungry Hippie in you at this North Pinellas event. There will be plenty of 70’s themed fun including a VW Bug Show, vendors, raffles, giveaways, live 70’s music, beer & wine and a food truck rally.

Dog Days of Summer
Saturday Aug. 18 | 11 am – 3 pm
Highlander Park
1141 Michigan Boulevard | Dunedin, FL

Join dog owners and their pets at Highlander Park in Dunedin for a fun family event. The free activities include a &ldquoFast and Furrious&rdquo Dog costume contest with participants and winners receiving prizes, a FiOS speed and agility course, free dog cooling station with fans and water bowels, plus a green screen photo or tablet App photo of your dog.

For a list of Tampa Bay’s Best Dog Beaches and Parks click HERE.

Free Back-to-School Physicals & Shots

The first day of school for Pinellas, Pasco and Hernando Counties is Monday, Aug 20. Hillsborough County schools go back one day later on Tuesday, Aug. 21, 2012. Get you kids ready for the big day.

University Area Community Health Center – Tampa
Saturday Aug. 18 | 9am &ndash 1pm
13601 North 22nd Street | Tampa, 33613
Walk-ins only &bull Call 443-3048

Webb Middle School – Tampa
Saturday Aug. 18 9am &ndash 12pm
6035 Hanley Rd. | Tampa, 33634
Walk-ins only &bull Call 443-3048

* Parents or legal guardians must accompany their children and immunization records are required for children to receive free immunizations. No sports, Head Start, or day care physicals will be available.

Click on the lick for a list of the Best 5 Fun Things To Do Before School Starts In Tampa.

Back-To-School Fair: Free backpacks, Haircuts

Free Back 2 School Jam
Saturday, Aug 18 11am – 2pm
Crossover Church
820 E. Busch Blvd. | Tampa, FL, 33612

1,000 free backpacks will be given out. One backpack per child. Supplies are limited. Backpacks will be available for children age 4-18 or pre-k through 12th grade. To register for free backpack click HERE. Other activities for you and the kids include free gently used clothing, groceries for you to take home, free haircuts, food and lots of activities and games. The event is free and open to the public.

For more information on back to school free haircuts in Pinellas County click HERE.

Clearwater Threshers vs. Brevard County Manatees
AAA Baseball at Bright House Field
601 Old Coachman Road | Clearwater, FL 33765
Website: www.milb.com

Saturday – Game time: 6:30pm – Field tickets start at $7. Post-game fireworks.

Sunday – Game time: 1pm – Take advantage Bright House Baseball Sunday Brunch! $12.00 gets you a game ticket plus access to a fabulous brunch with lots of gourmet food options.

Free USF Bulls Football Fan Fest
Sunday Aug. 19 at 2pm
Raymond James Stadium
4201 N. Dale Mabry Highway | Tampa, FL 33607
Website: www.raymondjamesstadium.com

Meet and get autographs and pictures with your favorite 2012 Bulls players. In addition, the field at Raymond James will be filled with interactive experiences, which will offer plenty of fun and excitement. Also, fans will be able to sit in available seats, meet with our sales staff and lock in their 2012 tickets on site. Parking available in Lot 4 (enter stadium through Dock B on the ground level).

Win Santana Concert Tickets
Friday – Sunday Aug. 17 – 19
Radio Statio Q105 (104.7)
Website: www.myq105.cbslocal.com

Q105 will give away Santana tickets every hour during the day starting on Friday, Aug 17 at 8:30am and ending Sunday, Aug 10 at 7pm. They will be giving away 30 pairs of Santana tickets on a Woodstock Weekend (43rd anniversary of Woodstock).

Concert Details:
Carlos Santana in Concert
Sunday Aug 26, 2012 6pm &ndash 11pm
1-800-Ask-Gary Amphitheatre At The Florida State Fairgrounds


2009 NFL Power Rankings: Week 3 <br> Week 2 Fantasy Performers, Defenses, League Leaders

    Pittsburgh Steelers (1-1) - Previously: #1 - I'm not moving the Steelers down for losing a tough road game without one of their top defensive players. And if Jeff Reed makes both of his fourth-quarter field goals, Pittsburgh's probably 2-0 right now.

Speaking of Reed, it really looked like he was crying at the end of the game when Robbie Gould nailed the game-winner. Said Reed after the game, "It was the allergies. I mean it was the rain. I mean it was both. I mean my girlfriend just dumped me. I mean. ev. everyone's going to hate me now!"

This is exactly why I plan on making tons of money with the Ravens this year. Casual fans and the talking heads on TV don't understand how good this team is. The defense is still there (though they gave up a number of big plays on Sunday, which concerns me), while the offense ranks among the league's best. Joe Flacco is one of the top second-tier quarterbacks in the NFL right now, the offensive line is powerful and the running game continues to be very effective. Flying across the country and beating a talented Chargers team is no easy feat.

Some notes on the Giants from Sunday night:

1. Sticking with Tynes' field goal, Roger Goodell really needs to change this icing-the-kicker rule. If you missed it, Wade Phillips waited until the last nanosecond to call a timeout. Tynes made the kick and celebrated before he learned that Mr. Turkey Neck iced him.

If I were Mike Carey, the official of the Cowboys-Giants game, I would have just announced, "Unsportsmanlike penalty, Mr. Turkey Neck. The Cowboys will be penalized 15 yards at the start of their Week 3 game. This game is over."

Icing the kicker is childish, bush-league and ridiculous. More importantly, it doesn't even work most of the time! Emperor Goodell, where are you on this?

2. Speaking of Carey, I thought he made a poor judgment call on an inexplicable Kenny Phillips pick-six that bounced off Jason Witten's heel. It was initially ruled incomplete, but Carey reviewed it and determined that Phillips made the interception. However, Carey did not award the Giants with the touchdown because one official blew the play dead.

I know it's not following the rules, but I'd like to see more officials use common sense. Carey should have announced, "The play should be dead by rule. However, that would be unjust because the Giants scored a touchdown. Therefore, the touchdown counts. And if you don't like that Emperor Goodell, go f*** yourself."

3. The Giants really need Justin Tuck in the lineup. Tuck left in the middle of the game, and the Cowboys proceeding to rush for 173 yards in the second half.

4. This is why the receiver position is so overrated in the NFL and in fantasy football. Many people criticized the Giants for not finding a replacement for Plaxico Burress this offseason. Meanwhile, Mario Manningham and Steve Smith were undrafted in most fantasy leagues.

Just two weeks into the season, both wideouts have established themselves as studs. They combined for 20 catches, 284 yards and two touchdowns against the Cowboys. They're both in the top five in receiving yardage.

You win games in the trenches, and that's exactly why the Giants are one of the top three or four teams in the NFL. With that said, they can't afford to lose Tuck.

Notes on the Cowboys from Sunday night:

1. Did anyone find it hilarious that with this new stadium and giant JumboTron, Jerry Jones couldn't figure out how to turn on the mic for the national anthem? Maybe if Jones spent $1.16 billion instead of $1.15 billion on his palace, he could avoided this embarrassment.

2. Flozell Adams is a punk. The fat left tackle for the Cowboys was beaten by Justin Tuck, so he decided to kick Tuck in the knee cap. Tuck had to leave the game.

If I were Mike Carey, I would have thrown Adams out of the contest. You cannot, under any circumstances, kick someone in the knee cap. That was a ridiculous decision that could have potentially ended Tuck's season. There was no reason Adams should have been allowed to continue playing.

3. The Cowboys' run defense impressed me Sunday night. I know they were focusing on containing Brandon Jacobs and Ahmad Bradshaw, but holding those two talented backs to 95 yards on 25 carries is no easy task.

The bad news for Dallas is that Mario Manningham and Steve Smith torched them instead. The Cowboys will probably need to be more balanced defensively the next time they battle the Giants.

4. The pressure was on with the new stadium opening, so it was no surprise to see Tony Aurora Snowmo rear his ugly head once again. Romo was a very December-esque 13-of-29 for 127 yards, one touchdown and three picks. It's very apparent that Aurora Snowmo will once again choke when it matters most late in the year.

1. The Dolphins ran the perfect game plan and still lost. We all saw first-hand why they don't have a realistic shot at winning the Super Bowl: Their quarterback cannot hit a big play, which is a huge disadvantage against a great defense (like the Ravens).

I said this on the forums during Miami's "2-minute drill:" "The Colts went 80 yards in 32 seconds. The Dolphins went 6 yards in 73 seconds." Angels cried during Miami's pathetic attempt to win the game.

2. Though Miami couldn't move the ball quickly, it still had a shot at taking the lead. Ted Ginn had both of his hands on the ball in the end zone, but couldn't haul it in. Ginn finished with 11 catches for 108 yards, so it's a shame that he's the goat in this loss.

3. When are the Colts going to stop the run? It's been like 10 years of this. The Dolphins rushed for 235 yards on 48 carries. What happened to those big defensive tackles they drafted?

4. If you missed it, the Colts won this game despite not having the ball for a full quarter. Their 14:53 time of possession was the lowest for a winning team since 1977. Indianapolis' defense will have to get off the field more often against better opponents.

5. Three out of Miami's next four games are against the Chargers, Jets and Saints. They won't be able to come back from 1-5.

6. An important fantasy note: Donald Brown - not Joseph Addai - played most of the second half, including Indianapolis' scoring drive. Addai missed an assignment that led to a Manning sack, so that could have been a reason he was out of the game. Another reason? Brown is simply more talented.

Oh, and beating New Orleans out for the NFC South crown will be difficult. As Keyshawn Johnson said on Sunday NFL Countdown this week: "Saints has good offense."

Rex Ryan is such a great coach, he inspired my friend Dennis, operator of Draft Debacled.com to say:

"Rex Ryan once met the most interesting man in the world, and promptly punched him in the jaw."

"When Rex Ryan does push ups, he doesn't move up and down the world moves down and up."

Wraith: What the hell happened to Brady? When did he start sucking?

Lord Joe: When he was 14 and confused by the feeling in his pants in gym class. Oh you mean at football? Last year when Bernie Pollard debacled his leg.

It's hard to believe, but Brady is on pace to throw just 16 touchdowns. He's clearly not healthy, and it doesn't help that his offensive line and defense are letting him down.

Matt, the goal for Peterson shouldn't be 3,000 yards it should be preserving Peterson for the playoffs and the rest of his career, while giving him enough touches to secure homefield advantage. If Birk and the Vikings want to pull a Herm Edwards and turn Peterson into Larry Johnson, they can go right ahead.

2009 NFL Power Rankings: Week 3 - Bottom 10

32. Cleveland Browns (0-2) - Previously: #31 - Derek Anderson Time! I have nothing more to say about this awful team, so let's use this space for my exclusive interview with Eric Mangini.

ME: Thanks for joining me, Eric.

MANGINI: "Yep. It's your pleasure."

ME: All right. Well, you had a tough loss Sunday. You scored six points against the stinkin' Broncos for crying out loud.

MANGINI: "Yeah, that's a big concern for me. I'm going to need to score more points for Erin Andrews to go out with me."

ME: If you say so. It's a shame that you didn't draft Mark Sanchez in April. He's been great for the Jets.

MANGINI: "I disagree. Sanchez said he wasn't interested in coming to my slumber party, so I didn't draft him. He's a loser."

ME: A loser? So the crap players you traded for aren't losers?

MANGINI: "Losers? All the guys I traded for went to my birthday party last year and got me the presents I asked them to get, so they're not losers. You know who's a loser? Shannon Sharpe!"

ME: Nah, Shannon's a good guy, but I'm not going to argue about that. What I will ask you is if Quinn is still your starting quarterback. Or are you going with Derek Anderson?

MANGINI: "No and no. I'm going with Brett Ratliff. I told Brady and Derek to get me a red Mega Man for my birthday, but they bought me Ants in the Pants. Ants in the Pants? Ants in the Pants!? I wanted a red Mega Man! Ratliff got me a yellow Mega Man. He's my guy."

ME: And what if Shannon Sharpe gets you a red Mega Man?

MANGINI: "Doesn't matter. He ruins my chances with Erin Andrews."

31. St. Louis Rams (0-2) - Previously: #32 - NFL.com's new crappy Game Center sucks, but one great thing about it is some of the ridiculous and hilarious comments you can find on there. For example, here's one post that someone wrote during the Rams-Redskins game (thanks, ChicagoJay):

Rams will NOT get Tbow, are you stupid? that kid is trash and will never be an NFL QB. HERE WE COME COLT MCCOY!

My hypothesis is that this was Josh Mishandles posting before the Broncos-Browns game. I'm not even going to bother to confirm this.

30. Kansas City Chiefs (0-2) - Previously: #29 - How do you lose to the Raiders at home? How humiliating.

With nothing more to say about the Chiefs, I'd like to mention a funny comment from Puppy Puncher in his NFL Week 2 write-up:

"The Bengals are like a really hot girl that every guy wanted to get with. All your friends talk about her hot a** and how big her breasts are. Then when you undress her, she has chlamydia."

29. Detroit Lions (0-2) - Previously: #30 - The Lions led 10-0 but failed to cover as 10-point underdogs against the Vikings. Why does this cause me to twitch uncontrollably? Hmm. maybe because they led 17-0 as 9.5-point underdogs against the Buccaneers last year and cost me my only Pick of the Month loss since 2007. I feel like a traumatized assault victim. Thank God Sage Rosenfails isn't starting for anyone this season.

28. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (0-2) - Previously: #28 - Byron Sandwich is proving to be even worse than advertised. I criticized Raheem Morris' decision of making Sandwich his starter over Luke McCown, when McCown out-performed Sandwich in the preseason (despite inferior stats). So, why did Morris go with Sandwich? Time for oddities!

1:5 - Morris didn't watch the games. He just looked at the box scores.

EVEN - Sandwich told Morris that he would eat him. It took Sandwich 40 minutes to make this threat.

4:1 - Sandwich was just as crappy as the majority of Tampa Bay's roster. Morris didn't want the players to feel bad about themselves with a superior quarterback under center.

9:1 - This was all an elaborate plan by Morris to finish with the league's worst record so he could have the No. 1 pick in the 2010 NFL Draft. Morris knew that McCown could win him a couple of games, and that having Sandwich under center was a perfect recipe for 0-16. Brilliant. Another coach should start Sandwich next year to get similar results.

27. Jacksonville Jaguars (0-2) - Previously: #25 - This Jacksonville squad is a joke. They get up for playing the Colts twice a year and almost always lose. After that, they can't come close to matching the same emotion for their next game. The Jaguars are now 1-7 against the spread after losing to Indianapolis since 2002. So, not only do they usually go down to the Colts, they also suffer a defeat the following week. That's two losses for the price of one. No wonder the Jaguars disappoint almost every year they should be concentrating on the games they can win.

The troubling thing now is that the Jaguars look like they've already quit. I've never seen a team look so sluggish, slow and disoriented this early in the year. They lost by 14, but the score was 31-3 before Arizona turned off the engine. It's almost as if they've given up on Jack Del Rio. You'd think they'd want to go out and prove their Tim Tebow-loving owner wrong after he went public about the team's future, but no - they showed up flat and disinterested. The Jaguars are a disgrace.

26. Oakland Raiders (1-1) - Previously: #24 - Introducing, the new Player Profiles!

Player Profile: JaMarcus Russell

Positives:
- Has a golden arm
- Can eat lots of Doritos
- Can eat lots of Oreos
- Can eat lots of doughnuts
Negatives:
- Eats lots of Doritos
- Eats lots of Oreos
- Eats lots of doughnuts
- Is deemed a "great player" by Al Davis

25. Denver Broncos (2-0) - Previously: #27 - If you didn't know, Shannon Sharpe literally parachuted into the stadium during this game. He was honored at halftime.

I found it hilarious that Eric Mangini was in the stadium when this happened ( Mangini is Sharpe's best friend if you haven't heard).

When this happened, Mangini must have thought, "Oh no, he crashed my slumber party, and now he's crashing my game! I told him I was going to be in Denver next weekend. Why does he keep following me!? Now I'll never go on a date with Erin Andrews. "

24. Buffalo Bills (1-1) - Previously: #26 - Defeating the Buccaneers is like beating your little brother in a one-on-one game. You might feel good about yourself, but the reality is that you won't be any better when you go up against guys your own size. The Bills will need to vanquish a legitimate NFL team before I can consider moving them out of the Bottom 10.

23. Carolina Panthers (0-2) - Previously: #23 - My Jerks of the Week will be posted on Wednesday. Meanwhile, here's a great nomination for a Jerk of the Week from e-mailer Andrew H.: The Carolina Panthers general manager.


2009 NFL Power Rankings: The Rest:
11. San Diego Chargers (1-1). Previously: #4
12. Green Bay Packers (1-1). Previously: #8
13. Chicago Bears (1-1). Previously: #15
14. Cincinnati Bengals (1-1). Previously: #16
15. Philadelphia Eagles (1-1). Previously: #13
16. Seattle Seahawks (1-1). Previously: #10
17. Houston Texans (1-1). Previously: #21
18. Tennessee Titans (0-2). Previously: #11
19. Dallas Cowboys (1-1). Previously: #14
20. Arizona Cardinals (1-1). Previously: #22
21. Miami Dolphins (0-2). Previously: #19
22. Washington Redskins (1-1). Previously: #17

    Pittsburgh Steelers (1-1) - Previously: #1 - I'm not moving the Steelers down for losing a tough road game without one of their top defensive players. And if Jeff Reed makes both of his fourth-quarter field goals, Pittsburgh's probably 2-0 right now.

Speaking of Reed, it really looked like he was crying at the end of the game when Robbie Gould nailed the game-winner. Said Reed after the game, "It was the allergies. I mean it was the rain. I mean it was both. I mean my girlfriend just dumped me. I mean. ev. everyone's going to hate me now!"

This is exactly why I plan on making tons of money with the Ravens this year. Casual fans and the talking heads on TV don't understand how good this team is. The defense is still there (though they gave up a number of big plays on Sunday, which concerns me), while the offense ranks among the league's best. Joe Flacco is one of the top second-tier quarterbacks in the NFL right now, the offensive line is powerful and the running game continues to be very effective. Flying across the country and beating a talented Chargers team is no easy feat.

Some notes on the Giants from Sunday night:

1. Sticking with Tynes' field goal, Roger Goodell really needs to change this icing-the-kicker rule. If you missed it, Wade Phillips waited until the last nanosecond to call a timeout. Tynes made the kick and celebrated before he learned that Mr. Turkey Neck iced him.

If I were Mike Carey, the official of the Cowboys-Giants game, I would have just announced, "Unsportsmanlike penalty, Mr. Turkey Neck. The Cowboys will be penalized 15 yards at the start of their Week 3 game. This game is over."

Icing the kicker is childish, bush-league and ridiculous. More importantly, it doesn't even work most of the time! Emperor Goodell, where are you on this?

2. Speaking of Carey, I thought he made a poor judgment call on an inexplicable Kenny Phillips pick-six that bounced off Jason Witten's heel. It was initially ruled incomplete, but Carey reviewed it and determined that Phillips made the interception. However, Carey did not award the Giants with the touchdown because one official blew the play dead.

I know it's not following the rules, but I'd like to see more officials use common sense. Carey should have announced, "The play should be dead by rule. However, that would be unjust because the Giants scored a touchdown. Therefore, the touchdown counts. And if you don't like that Emperor Goodell, go f*** yourself."

3. The Giants really need Justin Tuck in the lineup. Tuck left in the middle of the game, and the Cowboys proceeding to rush for 173 yards in the second half.

4. This is why the receiver position is so overrated in the NFL and in fantasy football. Many people criticized the Giants for not finding a replacement for Plaxico Burress this offseason. Meanwhile, Mario Manningham and Steve Smith were undrafted in most fantasy leagues.

Just two weeks into the season, both wideouts have established themselves as studs. They combined for 20 catches, 284 yards and two touchdowns against the Cowboys. They're both in the top five in receiving yardage.

You win games in the trenches, and that's exactly why the Giants are one of the top three or four teams in the NFL. With that said, they can't afford to lose Tuck.

Notes on the Cowboys from Sunday night:

1. Did anyone find it hilarious that with this new stadium and giant JumboTron, Jerry Jones couldn't figure out how to turn on the mic for the national anthem? Maybe if Jones spent $1.16 billion instead of $1.15 billion on his palace, he could avoided this embarrassment.

2. Flozell Adams is a punk. The fat left tackle for the Cowboys was beaten by Justin Tuck, so he decided to kick Tuck in the knee cap. Tuck had to leave the game.

If I were Mike Carey, I would have thrown Adams out of the contest. You cannot, under any circumstances, kick someone in the knee cap. That was a ridiculous decision that could have potentially ended Tuck's season. There was no reason Adams should have been allowed to continue playing.

3. The Cowboys' run defense impressed me Sunday night. I know they were focusing on containing Brandon Jacobs and Ahmad Bradshaw, but holding those two talented backs to 95 yards on 25 carries is no easy task.

The bad news for Dallas is that Mario Manningham and Steve Smith torched them instead. The Cowboys will probably need to be more balanced defensively the next time they battle the Giants.

4. The pressure was on with the new stadium opening, so it was no surprise to see Tony Aurora Snowmo rear his ugly head once again. Romo was a very December-esque 13-of-29 for 127 yards, one touchdown and three picks. It's very apparent that Aurora Snowmo will once again choke when it matters most late in the year.

1. The Dolphins ran the perfect game plan and still lost. We all saw first-hand why they don't have a realistic shot at winning the Super Bowl: Their quarterback cannot hit a big play, which is a huge disadvantage against a great defense (like the Ravens).

I said this on the forums during Miami's "2-minute drill:" "The Colts went 80 yards in 32 seconds. The Dolphins went 6 yards in 73 seconds." Angels cried during Miami's pathetic attempt to win the game.

2. Though Miami couldn't move the ball quickly, it still had a shot at taking the lead. Ted Ginn had both of his hands on the ball in the end zone, but couldn't haul it in. Ginn finished with 11 catches for 108 yards, so it's a shame that he's the goat in this loss.

3. When are the Colts going to stop the run? It's been like 10 years of this. The Dolphins rushed for 235 yards on 48 carries. What happened to those big defensive tackles they drafted?

4. If you missed it, the Colts won this game despite not having the ball for a full quarter. Their 14:53 time of possession was the lowest for a winning team since 1977. Indianapolis' defense will have to get off the field more often against better opponents.

5. Three out of Miami's next four games are against the Chargers, Jets and Saints. They won't be able to come back from 1-5.

6. An important fantasy note: Donald Brown - not Joseph Addai - played most of the second half, including Indianapolis' scoring drive. Addai missed an assignment that led to a Manning sack, so that could have been a reason he was out of the game. Another reason? Brown is simply more talented.

Oh, and beating New Orleans out for the NFC South crown will be difficult. As Keyshawn Johnson said on Sunday NFL Countdown this week: "Saints has good offense."

Rex Ryan is such a great coach, he inspired my friend Dennis, operator of Draft Debacled.com to say:

"Rex Ryan once met the most interesting man in the world, and promptly punched him in the jaw."

"When Rex Ryan does push ups, he doesn't move up and down the world moves down and up."

Wraith: What the hell happened to Brady? When did he start sucking?

Lord Joe: When he was 14 and confused by the feeling in his pants in gym class. Oh you mean at football? Last year when Bernie Pollard debacled his leg.

It's hard to believe, but Brady is on pace to throw just 16 touchdowns. He's clearly not healthy, and it doesn't help that his offensive line and defense are letting him down.

Matt, the goal for Peterson shouldn't be 3,000 yards it should be preserving Peterson for the playoffs and the rest of his career, while giving him enough touches to secure homefield advantage. If Birk and the Vikings want to pull a Herm Edwards and turn Peterson into Larry Johnson, they can go right ahead.

2009 NFL Power Rankings: Week 3 - Bottom 10

32. Cleveland Browns (0-2) - Previously: #31 - Derek Anderson Time! I have nothing more to say about this awful team, so let's use this space for my exclusive interview with Eric Mangini.

ME: Thanks for joining me, Eric.

MANGINI: "Yep. It's your pleasure."

ME: All right. Well, you had a tough loss Sunday. You scored six points against the stinkin' Broncos for crying out loud.

MANGINI: "Yeah, that's a big concern for me. I'm going to need to score more points for Erin Andrews to go out with me."

ME: If you say so. It's a shame that you didn't draft Mark Sanchez in April. He's been great for the Jets.

MANGINI: "I disagree. Sanchez said he wasn't interested in coming to my slumber party, so I didn't draft him. He's a loser."

ME: A loser? So the crap players you traded for aren't losers?

MANGINI: "Losers? All the guys I traded for went to my birthday party last year and got me the presents I asked them to get, so they're not losers. You know who's a loser? Shannon Sharpe!"

ME: Nah, Shannon's a good guy, but I'm not going to argue about that. What I will ask you is if Quinn is still your starting quarterback. Or are you going with Derek Anderson?

MANGINI: "No and no. I'm going with Brett Ratliff. I told Brady and Derek to get me a red Mega Man for my birthday, but they bought me Ants in the Pants. Ants in the Pants? Ants in the Pants!? I wanted a red Mega Man! Ratliff got me a yellow Mega Man. He's my guy."

ME: And what if Shannon Sharpe gets you a red Mega Man?

MANGINI: "Doesn't matter. He ruins my chances with Erin Andrews."

31. St. Louis Rams (0-2) - Previously: #32 - NFL.com's new crappy Game Center sucks, but one great thing about it is some of the ridiculous and hilarious comments you can find on there. For example, here's one post that someone wrote during the Rams-Redskins game (thanks, ChicagoJay):

Rams will NOT get Tbow, are you stupid? that kid is trash and will never be an NFL QB. HERE WE COME COLT MCCOY!

My hypothesis is that this was Josh Mishandles posting before the Broncos-Browns game. I'm not even going to bother to confirm this.

30. Kansas City Chiefs (0-2) - Previously: #29 - How do you lose to the Raiders at home? How humiliating.

With nothing more to say about the Chiefs, I'd like to mention a funny comment from Puppy Puncher in his NFL Week 2 write-up:

"The Bengals are like a really hot girl that every guy wanted to get with. All your friends talk about her hot a** and how big her breasts are. Then when you undress her, she has chlamydia."

29. Detroit Lions (0-2) - Previously: #30 - The Lions led 10-0 but failed to cover as 10-point underdogs against the Vikings. Why does this cause me to twitch uncontrollably? Hmm. maybe because they led 17-0 as 9.5-point underdogs against the Buccaneers last year and cost me my only Pick of the Month loss since 2007. I feel like a traumatized assault victim. Thank God Sage Rosenfails isn't starting for anyone this season.

28. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (0-2) - Previously: #28 - Byron Sandwich is proving to be even worse than advertised. I criticized Raheem Morris' decision of making Sandwich his starter over Luke McCown, when McCown out-performed Sandwich in the preseason (despite inferior stats). So, why did Morris go with Sandwich? Time for oddities!

1:5 - Morris didn't watch the games. He just looked at the box scores.

EVEN - Sandwich told Morris that he would eat him. It took Sandwich 40 minutes to make this threat.

4:1 - Sandwich was just as crappy as the majority of Tampa Bay's roster. Morris didn't want the players to feel bad about themselves with a superior quarterback under center.

9:1 - This was all an elaborate plan by Morris to finish with the league's worst record so he could have the No. 1 pick in the 2010 NFL Draft. Morris knew that McCown could win him a couple of games, and that having Sandwich under center was a perfect recipe for 0-16. Brilliant. Another coach should start Sandwich next year to get similar results.

27. Jacksonville Jaguars (0-2) - Previously: #25 - This Jacksonville squad is a joke. They get up for playing the Colts twice a year and almost always lose. After that, they can't come close to matching the same emotion for their next game. The Jaguars are now 1-7 against the spread after losing to Indianapolis since 2002. So, not only do they usually go down to the Colts, they also suffer a defeat the following week. That's two losses for the price of one. No wonder the Jaguars disappoint almost every year they should be concentrating on the games they can win.

The troubling thing now is that the Jaguars look like they've already quit. I've never seen a team look so sluggish, slow and disoriented this early in the year. They lost by 14, but the score was 31-3 before Arizona turned off the engine. It's almost as if they've given up on Jack Del Rio. You'd think they'd want to go out and prove their Tim Tebow-loving owner wrong after he went public about the team's future, but no - they showed up flat and disinterested. The Jaguars are a disgrace.

26. Oakland Raiders (1-1) - Previously: #24 - Introducing, the new Player Profiles!

Player Profile: JaMarcus Russell

Positives:
- Has a golden arm
- Can eat lots of Doritos
- Can eat lots of Oreos
- Can eat lots of doughnuts
Negatives:
- Eats lots of Doritos
- Eats lots of Oreos
- Eats lots of doughnuts
- Is deemed a "great player" by Al Davis

25. Denver Broncos (2-0) - Previously: #27 - If you didn't know, Shannon Sharpe literally parachuted into the stadium during this game. He was honored at halftime.

I found it hilarious that Eric Mangini was in the stadium when this happened ( Mangini is Sharpe's best friend if you haven't heard).

When this happened, Mangini must have thought, "Oh no, he crashed my slumber party, and now he's crashing my game! I told him I was going to be in Denver next weekend. Why does he keep following me!? Now I'll never go on a date with Erin Andrews. "

24. Buffalo Bills (1-1) - Previously: #26 - Defeating the Buccaneers is like beating your little brother in a one-on-one game. You might feel good about yourself, but the reality is that you won't be any better when you go up against guys your own size. The Bills will need to vanquish a legitimate NFL team before I can consider moving them out of the Bottom 10.

23. Carolina Panthers (0-2) - Previously: #23 - My Jerks of the Week will be posted on Wednesday. Meanwhile, here's a great nomination for a Jerk of the Week from e-mailer Andrew H.: The Carolina Panthers general manager.


2009 NFL Power Rankings: The Rest:
11. San Diego Chargers (1-1). Previously: #4
12. Green Bay Packers (1-1). Previously: #8
13. Chicago Bears (1-1). Previously: #15
14. Cincinnati Bengals (1-1). Previously: #16
15. Philadelphia Eagles (1-1). Previously: #13
16. Seattle Seahawks (1-1). Previously: #10
17. Houston Texans (1-1). Previously: #21
18. Tennessee Titans (0-2). Previously: #11
19. Dallas Cowboys (1-1). Previously: #14
20. Arizona Cardinals (1-1). Previously: #22
21. Miami Dolphins (0-2). Previously: #19
22. Washington Redskins (1-1). Previously: #17


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One Day in Calgary: Top Chef Canada competitor Galasa Aden

By Eat North

While Takeout Wars was the episode where we bid adieu to chef Galasa Aden, a surprise twist on Top Chef Canada will see him cooking to get back into the competition come Monday, May 17. The suspense!

The chef explains that he has always loved being in the kitchen from a young age, but fell in love with the art of professional cooking while working in a restaurant as he was also pursuing an engineering degree. The chef-in-training left the program and wound up working in many recognizable Calgary eateries, most recently Deane House in the city's Inglewood neighbourhood.

Galasa was named one of Canada’s Top Young Chefs To Watch by The Globe and Mail and one day hopes to operate his own restaurant with a menu that draws inspiration from his Ethiopian background. He says it is his wish to inspire a new generation of black chefs.


Watch the video: MLB Worst Fans (December 2021).