Whim Sports' NFL Picks & Rankings: Week 10

Whim Sports Writers
Published 11-11-05
Graphic By: John Severino
Welcome to Whim's power rankings and picks following week 9 in the NFL. Each of our sports writers took some time to make their picks and come up with a top ten, which we feel are the most powerful in the league up to this point. So here you have it: Whim's power rankings and picks.

Power Rankings
(Following Week 9)


1. Indianapolis Colts (8-0) - Hey, all you haters out there in haterland who said the Colts hadn't played anyone. It's one thing to knock Jacksonville, arguably the Colts' best opponent before week 9, but now that Indianapolis has beaten the two-time defending Super Bowl Champions, we're hoping the rest of the world will just shut the hell up and face this fact: the Colts are undefeated. They've done all asked of them, and more. Houston is next up for the Colts, but after that comes a more difficult challenge even than playing in Foxboro at night: Cincinnati, Pittsburgh, Jacksonville, San Diego and Seattle in a six-week period. If the Colts are to match the 1998 Denver Broncos (forget the '72 Dolphins until the Colts' streak ties the longest streak since then) at 13-0, they'll have just San Diego, Seattle and the Arizona Cardinals standing in their way.

2. Denver Broncos (6-2) - They're a play away from 7-1. Don't think that doesn't still bug Mike Shanahan. What keeps him up at night, though, is that three of his next four games come against drastically underrated teams. No, we're not talking about the New York Jets. The Oakland Raiders, Dallas Cowboys and Kansas City Chiefs all have something to prove and each will have a chance to prove it against the team we consider the second-best in the AFC (and, arguably, the NFL).

3. Cincinnati Bengals (7-2) - This team has a bye this week, but we won't be surprised if they turn up in the RCA Dome this Sunday. Why? To watch the competition. The Bengals' third big test this year will be the Colts in week 11. So far, they're 0-2 in big-game situations. Going 0-3 would not help their playoff chances much, let alone what it'll do to their status as paper tigers. Still, though, you have to be a fan of this team; having been mired in putrescence for so many years, they're finally looking better than the best of college teams.

4. Pittsburgh Steelers (6-2) - If Big Ben were healthy, next to their name in the rankings would be a prime number, and we don't mean five. Ben Roethlisberger, with apologies to Whim fans who'd like us to stop knocking Charlie Batch and Tommy Maddox, is the man who needs to be healthy if the Steelers are going anywhere worth going in the playoffs. Fortunately, their regular-season mark shouldn't be hurt too much by their second-year QB's absence; excluding a game against Chicago Bears, who lead the NFC North mostly because nobody else in the division is worth a hill of beans, the Steelers have only two hard games left in their schedule, and one is against the Bengals, a team they've already beaten once quite handily. The other game is against the Colts, and they'll need Roethlisberger for that one.

5. Carolina Panthers (6-2) - These guys are good. They have just four difficult games left, and that's assuming the Buccaneers can find some offensive stability anywhere on offense. (We're not holding our breath). The return of Steve Smith has meant a return to respectability for a Panthers team that was in the Super Bowl two years ago. If the defense, which is giving up fewer than 20 points per game, can hold up through the rest of the season, these guys could end up in the Super Bowl.

6. Atlanta Falcons (6-2) - I guess we're not supposed to question Michael Vick's ability to win a game by throwing the damn ball because he won a game with his arm. Against Miami. And he had 228 yards in the air. But the problem is that he had exactly one touchdown, and this was against Miami. To sum up: 228 passing yards, one touchdown and 17 total points against Miami. Boy does that ever convince us. Upcoming games against Carolina (at Carolina week 13, against week 17) will be more formidable challenges.

7. New York Giants (6-2) - Ok, Whim fans, raise your hands, all of you who picked the Giants to be in the lead in the NFC East after eight games. (We're still typing with both hands.) The Giants are doing enough on defense, and more than enough on offense, to keep winning games. The bruising part of the schedule continues, though, with games coming against ... well, NFC teams each of whom could end up in the playoffs. Four of those six games are against NFC East opponents, meaning the Giants will secure their own fate if they can keep on keeping on.

8. Seattle Seahawks (6-2) - With apologies to San Francisco (twice) and Green Bay, the Seahawks have only three tough games left. That means they should finish, at worst, 11-5. That should be good enough for at least a 3-seed, given that the NFC North will be sending a representative to the playoffs. If Seattle can compensate for the loss of Ken Hamlin, they should be looking good come playoff time.

9. Jacksonville Jaguars (5-3) - Get ready for a possible Wild Card berth, Jaguar fans. With only one big game left, the Jaguars could go 11-5 (or even 12-4). Considering the lackluster condition of the AFC East and Kansas City (5-3)'s upcoming punishing schedule, the Jaguars could roll into week 15 guaranteed at least the opportunity to write their own playoff story. (Up to the first round, at least.)

10. Washington Redskins (5-3) - We could talk about the distractions presented to the Eagles by the T.O. situation, but again, folks, a win is a win is a win. Washington could easily have lost that game. They didn't. Washington is also tied for first in the NFL for points allowed (98, which is how many Indianapolis has yielded). Nobody's in any danger of confusing this team for the Greatest Show on Turf, but give credit where credit is due.

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For more information on news, scores, and stats, visit www.nfl.com
Inside Whim

This Week's Picks * Week 10: November 13 & 14
Games John Severino Josh Mathews Logan Kline Andrew Lent Patrick Hunter-Kilmer Jeff Clark
Arizona @ Detroit Detroit Arizona Detroit Arizona Detroit Detroit
Baltimore @ Jacksonville Jacksonville Jacksonville Jacksonville Jacksonville Jacksonville Jacksonville
Houston @ Indianapolis Indianapolis Indianapolis Indianapolis Indianapolis Indianapolis Indianapolis
Kansas City @ Buffalo Kansas City Kansas City Kansas City Kansas City Kansas City Buffalo
Minnesota @ N.Y. Giants Minnesota N.Y. Giants N.Y. Giants N.Y. Giants N.Y. Giants N.Y. Giants
New England @ Miami New England New England New England New England New England New England
San Francisco @ Chicago Chicago Chicago Chicago Chicago Chicago Chicago
Denver @ Oakland Denver Denver Oakland Denver Denver Denver
N.Y. Jets @ Carolina Carolina Carolina Carolina Carolina Carolina Carolina
Green Bay @ Atlanta Green Bay Atlanta Atlanta Atlanta Atlanta Atlanta
St. Louis @ Seattle Seattle Seattle Seattle Seattle Seattle St. Louis
Washington @ Tampa Bay Tampa Bay Washington Washington Washington Washington Tampa Bay
Cleveland @ Pittsburgh Pittsburgh Pittsburgh Pittsburgh Pittsburgh Pittsburgh Pittsburgh
Dallas @ Philadelphia Philadelphia Dallas Philadelphia Philadelphia Dallas Dallas
Last Week's Record (10-4) (11-3) (11-3) (12-2) (12-2) (9-5)
Overall Record (64-34) (67-31) (70-28) (65-33) (65-33) (41-29)


Taglines are for losers, we win.
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Posted by Andrew Lent

I need to make up those five games on Logan in the second half!
RE:
Posted by Blake Fought

"Ben Roethlisberger, with apologies to Whim fans who'd like us to stop knocking Charlie Batch and Tommy Maddox, is the man who needs to be healthy if the Steelers are going anywhere worth going in the playoffs."
I can't stand Batch out there - Maddox should get another shot at the backup QB spot. However I don't want either of them out there if there's a healthy or even 60% Roethlisberger available. That Green Bay game was unbearable - here's a new nickname for Batch (Maddox has already been termed by many Steeler fans "Turnover Tommy") - "Careless Charlie".

And is it just me or is Jeff trying to gain ground these past two weeks? Another round of picks going against the other guys: STL and BUF.

Although I wouldn't do it, I'm surprised somebody didn't pick the Dolphins to beat the Pats. The 'fins didn't do to bad the last time they faced the defending champs and the Pats have to be realing after that loss to Indianapolis.
No Subject
Posted by jenny

how come we can't see the other articles in this series?
No Subject
Posted by Andrew Lent

That's a good point, Jenny, I don't know why we didn't even think of that.
No Subject
Posted by Patrick

"And is it just me or is Jeff trying to gain ground these past two weeks? Another round of picks going against the other guys: STL and BUF."

Jeff will have another thing coming to him if he tries to go with all upsets...

Gotta do something
Posted by Jeff

Man I had such a bad week a few weeks back I have to pull out all the stops just to chatch up... plus who doesn't like an underdog (I have to say that I am a 49ers fan)
No Subject
Posted by John

Well nowwww youu cannnnn!!!!! With the all new "Previous Week's Picks & Rankings" feature. You can access any article from the very first one.
No Subject
Posted by Andrew Lent

Good job, John!
No Subject
Posted by John Sev

Come on 13-1!