Thursday, September 15, 2016

The NFL Poll

So Week One of the NFL season is in the books, and it's time to check in on the AP's NFL Poll.  This is the seventh season that we've tracked the NFL through polls.  In 2010 and 2011, we used our own poll.  Starting in 2012, the AP began issuing its own poll, and we've used that one instead.  Based on polling results, these are your best NFL teams in each of the last five years:

2010:  New England Patriots (14-2) (lost 28-21 to Jets in Divisional Playoffs)
2011:  Green Bay Packers (15-1) (lost 37-30 to Giants in Divisional Playoffs)
2012:  Denver Broncos (13-3) (lost 38-35 to Ravens in Divisional Playoffs)
2013:  Seattle Seahawks (13-3) (WON SUPER BOWL)
2014:  Seattle Seahawks (12-4) (lost 28-24 to Patriots in Super Bowl)
2015:  Carolina Panthers (15-1) (lost 24-10 to Broncos in Super Bowl)

So the 2013 Seahawks are the only team to do the double -- winning the poll championship and the playoffs.  On the other hand, the top-ranked team has reached the Super Bowl in each of the last three seasons.

Here's the AP's top 10 after Week One.  A lot of familiar faces at the top:

1.  New England Patriots:  1-0
2.  Denver Broncos:  1-0
3.  Pittsburgh Steelers:  1-0
4.  Green Bay Packers:  1-0
5.  Carolina Panthers:  0-1
T6.  Seattle Seahawks:  1-0
T6.  Cincinnati Bengals:  1-0
8.  Arizona Cardinals:  0-1
9.  Kansas City Chiefs:  1-0
10.  Minnesota Vikings:  1-0

My guess is that one of these teams will win the Super Bowl.

The Dolphins lost at Seattle in Week One, and moved from 25 to 20.  The Redskins were humiliated at home by Pittsburgh, and fell from 11 to 21.

The best game this week will be in Pittsburgh, where the # 3 Steelers will host the tied-for-sixth Bengals.  That's a noon-Sunday start.  The Sunday night game is also good with the # 10 Vikings opening their new stadium against the # 4 Packers.  Those are the only games featuring two top-10 squads.


  1. Also, for the record ...

    2010: I hated the Patriots.
    2011: I hated the Patriots.
    2012: I hated the Patriots.
    2013: I hated the Patriots.
    2014: I hated the Patriots.
    2015: I hated the Patriots.

    It's still early in this season, but, so far ...

    2016: I hate the Patriots.

    1. Why did you just start hating them in 2010 or are you just stopping there because that is when the HP started?

    2. Yeah, I just lined up with the HP here. I started hating this team with the snowplow game. There were a few years there several years into Brady's career when I actually started lightening up on them, just because it seemed like they were always doing interesting, inventive stuff. But then it turned out that they are constantly looking for ways to cheat, and that was that. If they were so willing to cheat in the ways we do already know about, then I just figure they're cheating in 20 ways we don't know about all of the time. In a way, that's better because it doesn't make me constantly mad with the Dolphins because guys who play for Miami then go and have so much more success for New England. It's not the Dolphins' fault; it's probably because the Patriots are cheating. But, in another, it's just sucked the intrigue out of the whole endeavor for me and turned the NFL more into a pro-wrestling deal. I imagine there's a whole bunch more cheating going on across the league now, beyond the Patriots. Watching the NFL on TV today is kind of like watching a TV show about the NFL.