NFL Power Rankings Week 8: Steelers Rise, Chargers Fall

Frank Doyle | Updated Nov 01, 2011

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The Steelers are back while the Chargers are slip sliding away. Frank Doyle ranks ‘em after a wild Week 8.

1 (-). Green Bay Packers (7-0, 5-2-0 ATS). One trait that Aaron Rodgers shares with Michael Jordan is the ability to turn any slight, real or perceived, into strength. If Rodgers spent the bye week online looking for a reason to be annoyed at the Chargers on Sunday we wouldn’t be a bit surprised.

2 (+1). San Francisco 49ers (6-1, 7-0-0 ATS). The only team in football that’s perfect against the spread.

3 (+4). Pittsburgh Steelers (6-2, 4-4-0 ATS). You know the most incredible thing about the Steelers’ win on Sunday? No James Harrison. The road to the Super Bowl still goes through Pittsburgh. How could we have thought it wouldn’t?

4 (+2). Detroit Lions (6-2, 5-3-0 ATS). Very heartening win for the Lions as they keep pace with Green Bay in the NFC North.

5 (-). Baltimore Ravens (5-2, 4-3-0 ATS). Baltimore faces a season-defining trip to Pittsburgh on Sunday.

6 (-4). New England Patriots (5-2, 3-3-1 ATS). Brady is still there, but guys like Tedy Bruschi and Mike Vrabel and Rodney Harrison just haven’t been replaced. That’s the chicken that came home to roost on Sunday in Steeltown.

7 (+1). Buffalo Bills (5-2, 5-1-1 ATS). Buffalo is looking better and better as the season goes on.

8 (-4). New Orleans Saints (5-3, 4-4-0 ATS). While the Saints are looking worse and worse. The loss to the Rams harked back to the glory days of the New Orleans Aints. Huge pressure on them now to stop the season sweep against Tampa Bay.

9 (+3). Cincinnati Bengals (5-2, 6-1-0 ATS). The best NFL betting value in the League. Look at the record against the spread – nobody sees them coming, or realises just how good they are. The Niners are public now but there’s still money to be made on the Bengals.

10 (+1). New York Giants (5-2, 3-3-1 ATS). If the Giants get hot they can beat anyone. But they’re also a team that’s lost at home to Seattle, and that’s hard to forget or forgive.

11 (-2). Oakland Raiders (4-3, 4-3-0 ATS). The Palmer Era begins this Sunday, and the Raiders have bet the house. Exciting times.

12 (+4). Houston Texans (5-3, 4-3-1 ATS). The AFC South is surely Houston’s to lose now.

13 (-). Chicago Bears (4-3, 3-4-0 ATS). The Bears are coming off a bye week and into a huge Monday Night Football game at Philly.

14 (-). Tampa Bay Buccaneers (4-3, 3-4-0 ATS). Tampa Bay is one of the most maddeningly inconsistent teams in the League, and Josh Freeman is not having a good season. But the NFC South is there to be won and if the Bucs can sweep the Saints they’re right back in contention.

15 (-). New York Jets (4-3, 3-3-1 ATS). The Jets come off their bye into a suddenly huge game at Buffalo.

16 (+2). Atlanta Falcons (4-3, 3-4-0 ATS). Atlanta surely won’t fall into the same trap at Indy as New Orleans did at St Louis?

17 (+3). Philadelphia Eagles (3-4, 3-4-0 ATS). The comeback has certainly started in Philly. Whether they can keep it up is another matter.

18 (-8). San Diego Chargers (4-3, 2-5-0 ATS). The Chargers are in big trouble. That was a horrible loss at Kansas City and now they have to play Green Bay after six days rest and divisional opponents Oakland four days later. The Chargers’ could be done before Thanksgiving.

19 (+3). Kansas City Chiefs (4-3, 5-2-0 ATS). 5-2-0 against the spread. The Chiefs aren’t giving up the AFC West without a fight.

20 (+1). Tennessee Titans (4-3, 4-3-0 ATS). Beating the Colts doesn’t carry the kudos it once did.

21 (-2). Dallas Cowboys (3-4, 3-4-0 ATS). The season is slipping away from Dallas.

22 (-5). Washington Redskins (3-4, 3-4-0 ATS). And it could already have gone from Washington. The Skins looked just awful in Toronto.

23 (-). Cleveland Browns (3-4, 1-6-0 ATS). The Browns suck.

24 (-). Carolina Panthers (2-6, 5-2-1 ATS). Kickers. Can’t live with ‘em, can’t shoot ‘em.

25 (-). Seattle Seahawks (2-5, 4-3-0 ATS). If they won at the Giants, they can win at the Cowboys, right? Right?

26 (+2). Minnesota Vikings (2-6, 5-3-0 ATS). The Vikings won because Orlando Mare missed a field goal but they deserved the win for playing hard all year.

27 (-). Denver Broncos (2-5, 2-5-0 ATS). Tebow catches most of the flak but the Broncos have issues all over, not just at quarterback.

28 (-2). Arizona Cardinals (1-6, 2-4-1 ATS). Heartbreaking loss for Arizona on Sunday. The Cards can’t get a break.

29 (-). Jacksonville Jaguars (2-6, 2-5-1 ATS). Jacksonville is a very limited football team.

30 (+2). St. Louis Rams (1-6, 1-6-0 ATS). It’s hard not to be happy for Steven Jackson. Being the every down back on a bad team is a hard way to make a living.

31 (-). Miami Dolphins (0-7, 2-5-0 ATS). Miami will win a game this year. The Fish play hard for their coach even though his goose is cooked. That’s a great sign of character.

32 (-2). Indianapolis Colts (0-8, 2-6-0 ATS). It’s shocking to say it, but if I were Bill Polian I’d trade Manning and draft Andrew Luck. Football is sentimental for fans but it’s business all the way in the front office. Everything about Indianapolis in 2011 screams end of an era.

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