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Week 6 Power Rankings

Eli, what is your reaction to people picking the Giants to be #1?

Jason Lisk and the wisdom of crowds say the Giants are the best team in the league; Aaron Schatz’ DVOA numbers agree. The computer operated by Brian Burke prefers Denver and Bill Barnwell’s wheel landed on Chicago. ESPN prefers the Falcons, a pick that is surely more retrodictive than predictive.

Technically, I don’t do power rankings, because I don’t even know what power rankings are supposed to represent. What I do is predict how many games I expect each team to win in 2012. And while it was ugly and under the spotlight, Houston’s performance against the Packers on Sunday Night wasn’t enough to make me think any other team ends up winning more games than the Texans will this season.

[As always, the number of wins I’m projecting each team to finish the season with is in column 3. The fourth column – PWIN – shows how many wins I projected last week, and the difference column represents how many wins I added or subtracted this week. The “RSOS” column stands for the remaining SOS for the team, based on the number of projected wins I’m giving to each of their opponents. The “RHG” column stands for remaining home games.]

Houston Texans5-11213-10.4695I'm not sure how many teams would have beaten the Packers last week. The gap between Houston and the next best AFC team is still significant.
Atlanta Falcons6-0121200.4445Their last 5 wins have all come against quarterbacks drafted in the top 4: Carson Palmer, Robert Griffin III, Cam Newton, Philip Rivers, and Peyton Manning.
San Francisco 49ers4-21112-10.5315A reality check for a 49ers team that looked unstoppable a week ago. Last week I wrote "I can't imagine projecting SF under 12 wins again this year." My imagination is pretty narrow, apparently.
Chicago Bears4-1111010.5116Chicago just experienced the greatest bye week ever according to every power ranking I've seen.
Denver Broncos3-311920.3945According to Advanced NFL Stats, Denver is the best team in the league. Their remaining schedule is absurdly easy, so I'm going to perhaps prematurely give them a two-win bump. Their week 15 game in Baltimore may be for a bye, and I now think Denver is the favorite.
New England Patriots3-31012-20.5136New England is three plays away from being 6-0, but with terrible pass defense, I'm not sure they're that much better than their record.
Baltimore Ravens5-11011-10.5134Baltimore's defense is forced to rely on the continued good health of Ed Reed. Now, he latest news is that Reed has been playing with a torn labrum.
Green Bay Packers3-310910.4635As bad as the season has been, the Packers looked like world champs against the Texans. Now we just need to see some consistency.
Pittsburgh Steelers2-3911-20.4556Pittsburgh, I just can't quit you. I still kind of think the Steelers are a Super Bowl contender, but only because I'm an idiot. Still, a 7-4 record the rest of the way isn't a high bar for them against this schedule.
New York Giants4-29900.5445I've projected the Giants at 9 wins every week so far, and I'm not going to change now. The Giants are plagued by inconsistency, so I won't drop them from 9 wins if they lose to Washington this week.
Miami Dolphins3-39810.4945I'm on the bandwagon, although the Rams win was really ugly. Still, Philbin Phever!
Seattle Seahawks4-29810.5385Brutal remaining schedule and serious doubts about their offense makes it hard for me to bump them to 10 wins, but a huge win over New England.
Minnesota Vikings4-289-10.5635I knew it! Minnesota could not prove that they were "for real for real"!
Arizona Cardinals4-289-10.5814I'd like to pat myself on the back for having Arizona at 9 wins two weeks ago. :patsback:
Philadelphia Eagles3-389-10.4945Okay, even Eagles apologists have to wonder what's going on here. I'm no longer giving this team the benefit of any doubt.
San Diego Chargers3-38800.4445They're terrible, I know, but they still have games against CLE, KC, TB, CIN, CAR, NYJ and OAK.
Dallas Cowboys2-38800.4896The Cowboys had a bad week, but they still have an edge on the Giants and could win the division if they defeat New York at home in 10 days.
New York Jets3-38710.4944Jets have already been 1-1, 2-2 and 3-3; can see them at 4-4 in two weeks, too.
Washington Redskins3-38620.4945Robert Griffin III is two good games away from being the MVP of the first half of the season. RG3 is 4th in ANY/A and 2nd in both rushing touchdowns and yards per carry.
Cincinnati Bengals3-378-10.5136Lose to the Browns: Drop 1 win.
New Orleans Saints1-47700.5345How is Drew Brees 23rd in completion percentage?
St. Louis Rams3-37700.5505With the exception of the Bears game, St. Louis has looked pretty good every week.
Buffalo Bills3-37610.5066The most uninspiring road win ever against a 4-1 team.
Detroit Lions2-36600.5806Big win over Philadelphia but I'm not sure if much has changed in Detroit. What can they do against that schedule?
Carolina Panthers1-46600.5065Cam Newton's body language last week was invisible.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers2-36600.5175The next five games are against New Orleans, Minnesota, Oakland, San Diego, and Carolina. I have no idea how any of those games will go.
Indianapolis Colts2-36600.4665I pat myself on the back for the extreme caution I advised regarding the Indy bandwagon. The sign that I have only two pats on the back is not good.
Tennessee Titans2-46510.4945Not a lot to like here, which makes them a darkhorse playoff team in the AFC.
Kansas City Chiefs1-556-10.4505Join the 2005 Texans as the only teams to fail to hold a lead for even a second in any of their first six games.
Oakland Raiders1-45500.4206Good showing in Atlanta, but even a 4-7 record might be pushing it for this team the rest of the way.
Jacksonville Jaguars1-45500.4835Big game this week in Oakland, which should show if there's any hope for a playoff push or if they're competing for the #1 pick.
Cleveland Browns1-54310.4945Welcome to 2012, where every AFC team has a chance to make the playoffs.