Sunday, January 10, 2016

Final NFL AP Poll

Here is the final NFL AP Top 10 of the year.  Seattle poleaxed the Cardinals in the last week of the season, so the Carolina Panthers finish the year on top:

1.  Carolina Panthers:  15-1
2.  Denver Broncos:  12-4
3.  Kansas City Chiefs:  11-5
4.  Arizona Cardinals:  13-3
5.  New England Patriots:  12-4
6.  Seattle Seahawks:  10-6
7.  Cincinnati Bengals:  12-4
8.  Minnesota Vikings:  11-5
9.  Pittsburgh Steelers:  10-6
10.  Washington Redskins:  9-7

Congratulations to Cam Newton and the Panthers, who finish the season as the NFL's best team.  Of course, as Kentucky fans know, being the best team doesn't always mean you survive the playoffs.  In 2010 and 2011, we did our own poll based on the AP's methodology.  Since then, the AP has conducted an NFL poll.  Based on the polling results, here are the best NFL teams of the last six 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) (?????????)

Here's what this weekend's playoff games look like:

(3) Kansas City at (12) Houston
(9) Pittsburgh at (7) Cincinnati
(6) Seattle at (8) Minnesota
(11) Green Bay at (10) Washington

By the way, I owe an apology to the Redskins.  I kept predicting that they would collapse, and they just kept getting better.  Whatever happens in the playoffs, finishing in the top 10 is something to be proud of.

The Dolphins (6-10) finished 25th.

The four worst teams in the league were the Cowboys (29), the 49ers (30), the Browns (31), and the Titans (32).  They are all lucky the NFL doesn't practice relegation.

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