December 29, 2015

2015 NFL Power Rankings, Week 16

Another upset week in the NFL, for which there may be ramifications for a couple teams.

Really, the big story in Week 16 is that the Panthers are no longer undefeated. The rest of the teams that are either jockeying for a playoff position or seeding don't have the kind of juice behind them that Carolina did, because they weren't on the verge of doing something historic.

And to that end, I have to say that Carolina's effort against Atlanta was not very good.  Credit Atlanta if you like or point to the fact that it was a division game on the road; Carolina beat down Atlanta the last time they played and this time should have been the same thing.  It wasn't, and that diminishes this NFL season.

We likely won't remember it much longer than it takes to get to the Super Bowl. And after the Super Bowl, especially if Carolina either doesn't win or fails to make it that far, we probably won't think about the undefeated season that could have been.  I'm sure I won't.

Since it was a week with more upsets than usual, my picks suffered.  The last few weeks haven't been all that kind anyway, but this week required a late comeback by Denver (in OT, no less) to get me to 9-7 straight up.  I'm still toiling in mediocrity, in other words.

Here are the Rankings for Week 16:

December 26, 2015

Bleach 657 - God of Thunder 2

A new chapter of Bleach is out, so let's talk about it.

Spoilers and sibling rivalry after the cut.

December 23, 2015

2015 NFL Power Rankings, Week 15

Fifteen weeks in, and I think we've got an idea who's good.

There were some bumps in the road to be sure.  But now that the midseason slumps have gone away, the elite teams have separated themselves and now the arguments about contenders will rage.

I guess most people were talking about Carolina vs. the Giants the last two days.  It was a good game, although closer than expected.  Cam Newton locked it up late with a drive for the game-winning field goal; I'm still not a fan of field goals when it's winning time, but the way he played was clearly MVP-level.

And if they finish undefeated, he's the guy.  Hell, he might get it even if they don't finish undefeated, that's how well he's played.

The picks were a little better, at 10-6 straight up.  Had no idea Indy would lose at home to the Texans (an embarrassing loss if there ever was one) or that New Orleans would fail to show up again.

Here are the Rankings for Week 15:

December 17, 2015

Bleach 656 - God of Thunder

A new chapter of Bleach is out, so let's talk about it.

Spoilers and black cats after the cut.

December 15, 2015

2015 NFL Power Rankings, Week 14

It's possible that I assumed good health would carry through for the majority of the players in my top ten.  An injury to a QB this late can really derail a team, though.

It was thus a week of fluctuation as all but two teams were on the move.

That uncertainty was reflected in my rather terrible picks.  I went 7-9 straight up and picked worse than a barrel of monkeys trying to write Shakespeare.

A number of teams let me down, not least of which were Buffalo, Indianapolis, and Miami.  I'm not sure why I thought any of them would win, looking back on it now.

Then again, could anyone have predicted Jacksonville putting up 50 in a single game?

Here are the Rankings for Week 14:

December 10, 2015

Bleach 655 - The Miracle

Another chapter of Bleach is out, so let's talk about it.

Spoilers and abnormal growth rates after the cut.

December 8, 2015

2015 NFL Power Rankings, Week 13

Has the playoff picture gotten any clearer?

I think we're fairly certain who the good teams are at the conclusion of Week 13.  The two teams at the top of the NFC North are just behind and are basically week-to-week in terms of which is better.  Last week it was definitely Minnesota; this week it's definitely Green Bay.  Next week, who knows?  Maybe Chicago will outplay both of them.

My picks were a bit better, but still not where I'd like them to be.  I was 10-6 thanks to going with Detroit and Chicago, among other teams that just got beat outright.

It's probably safe to say that five of the eight divisions are sewn up.  The AFC South should go right down to the wire, along with the aforementioned NFC North and the moribund NFC East.

How bad is that NFC East, you ask?  Well, the AFC South looks pretty good in comparison.

If that isn't a damning statement, I don't know what is.

Here are the Rankings for Week 13:

December 3, 2015

Bleach 654 - Deadman Standing

A new chapter of Bleach is out, so let's talk about it.

Spoilers and transitions (what a twist!) after the cut.

December 1, 2015

2015 NFL Power Rankings, Week 12

Thanksgiving threw a wrinkle into the patterns I thought were developing over the 2015 season.

And for whatever reason, I think that successful teams will continue to be successful, generally speaking, as the year goes on.  However, that didn't quite turn out to be the case for a few teams.

The most notable game was Sunday night's Denver/New England matchup that saw the Pats fall out of the #1 spot for the first time in what seems like a year. That leaves one undefeated team, and I think you know who's #1 now.

That said, there still aren't a lot of "good" teams in the league.  Yes, there are more teams with winning records at the moment, but a lot of them are 6-5 and that's not what I would consider to be "good".

My picks were fairly abysmal, which seems to be the usual in this stretch. I had to bet on Baltimore (and thus, that blocked FG that turned into a touchdown) just to get to 8-8.  Monkeys on typewriters...yeesh.

Here are the Rankings for Week 12: