2012 Advanced NFL Power Rankings: Ravens falling in Week 8

Evan Habeeb-US PRESSWIRE

The Atlanta Falcons are still atop the various Power Rankings. Are they the best team in the NFL? Survey says: "no."

Wow, we're nearly halfway through the season already? How did that happen? It really feels like just a week ago we were all excited about the season starting.

One thing you'll notice in the charts below: it seems pundits seem to be putting a bit too much stock in raw record. Are the Falcons the best team in the NFL, still? I say no. They're vulnerable and their 6-0 record is helped by the fact that they've already played all four AFC West teams. And based on the Objective rankings, I'm not alone in my discrediting of the Falcons as the top team.

If I had to pick a top team to take the Falcons' place, it'd probably be the 49ers or Bears. No offense to fans in Houston, but I just feel the NFC is significantly stronger than the AFC this year (for the record, I am a Chargers fan, so there's no conference bias here). So the 49ers and Bears playing as well as they have in such a strong conference (and divisions) is impressive.

Division Averages

Division Avg Ranking
NFC North 9.5000
NFC West 12.1250
NFC East 12.9000
AFC East 17.3625
AFC North 18.7375
NFC South 18.8000
AFC South 20.8750
AFC West 21.7000


Stock Rising

Team Week 7 Average Week 8 Average Difference
NO 24.000 19.667 4.333
DAL 19.000 15.583 3.417
TEN 26.546 24.250 2.296
PIT 13.909 11.917 1.992
MIN 11.182 9.583 1.599

Here come the Saints! They're turning into the team we all expected! Those 4 losses earlier (including one to the Chiefs)? Pay no attention to them.

Stock Falling

Team Week 7 Average Week 8 Average Difference
BAL 3.273 7.667 -4.394
ARI 13.818 16.917 -3.099
BUF 23.364 26.250 -2.886
DET 19.455 21.500 -2.045
SEA 8.364 10.167 -1.803

With the key injuries they've had on defense, I'm surprised Baltimore hasn't slid further. They only have a +13 point differential right now.

Subjective Average

Subjective
ESPN Fox CBS USA Today Sports Illustrated ProFootballTalk NFL.com Pro Football Weekly SB Nation Reddit Associated Press ProFootballFocus Average Change since last period
Falcons 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 3 1.167 -0.167 Falling
Texans 3 2 3 4 3 4 2 2 2 2 3 1 2.583 0.872 Rising
Giants 2 4 4 2 2 2 3 3 3 3 2 2 2.667 0.424 Rising
Bears 5 3 2 6 5 3 4 4 4 5 5 8 4.500 0.591 Rising
49ers 4 7 5 3 4 5 5 5 6 4 4 4 4.667 0.879 Rising
Packers 7 5 6 5 6 6 6 6 5 6 6 5 5.750 1.250 Rising
Patriots 8 9 7 8 8 7 7 7 7 8 7 6 7.417 0.856 Rising
Ravens 6 6 8 7 7 9 8 8 8 7 8 10 7.667 -4.394 Falling
Vikings 9 8 9 11 10 10 10 9 9 9 10 11 9.583 1.599 Rising
Broncos 12 11 10 9 11 11 9 10 12 10 9 7 10.083 0.553 Rising
Seahawks 11 10 11 10 9 8 11 11 10 11 11 9 10.167 -1.803 Falling
Steelers 10 12 12 13 12 12 12 12 11 12 12 13 11.917 1.992 Rising
Eagles 13 17 13 12 13 16 13 13 13 17 14 16 14.167 -0.803 Falling
Redskins 18 14 21 17 16 13 15 16 14 15 13 15 15.583 -0.219 Falling
Cowboys 15 13 15 14 17 23 14 18 17 14 15 12 15.583 3.417 Rising
Cardinals 14 19 18 19 18 14 16 17 16 13 19 20 16.917 -3.099 Falling
Chargers 17 23 16 15 20 22 17 14 15 16 16 18 17.417 -1.599 Falling
Dolphins 16 21 14 23 14 21 18 15 20 18 18 14 17.667 0.969 Rising
Saints 20 16 24 16 19 17 21 21 25 23 17 17 19.667 4.333 Rising
Jets 24 15 23 21 15 18 20 19 19 20 20 22 19.667 0.151 Rising
Bengals 22 20 17 22 24 19 19 23 18 19 22 21 20.500 -1.773 Falling
Rams 21 25 19 20 21 15 22 22 27 22 23 19 21.333 -1.151 Falling
Lions 19 18 20 18 25 24 24 20 24 21 21 24 21.500 -2.045 Falling
Colts 23 26 25 25 23 20 23 26 22 25 24 26 24.000 1.546 Rising
Titans 25 24 22 24 22 25 26 24 21 26 25 27 24.250 2.296 Rising
Buccaneers 26 22 28 27 27 26 25 25 26 24 26 23 25.417 -1.508 Falling
Bills 27 27 26 26 26 27 27 27 23 27 27 25 26.250 -2.886 Falling
Raiders 28 31 27 28 28 28 28 28 28 28 28 29 28.250 1.114 Rising
Panthers 29 28 31 29 30 30 29 29 29 29 29 30 29.333 -1.333 Falling
Browns 30 29 29 30 29 29 30 30 30 30 30 28 29.500 0.046 Rising
Chiefs 32 30 30 32 31 32 32 31 31 31 31 31 31.167 0.197 Rising
Jaguars 31 32 32 31 32 31 31 32 32 32 32 32 31.667 -0.303 Falling

Observations:

  • Previously, the subjective rankings had a good balance of AFC and NFC teams in the top 12. That's starting to slip now as the NFC has a 7-5 advantage over the AFC. I think it should be even more lopsided.
  • I really don't see the Eagles being that high, nor the Redskins.
  • The Chargers fell about 1.5 spots this week, mostly to make room for the Cowboys.
  • After enjoying some time up in the top 10, the Cardinals are starting to fade quickly with their offense sputtering now.
  • Only four of the bottom 12 are NFC teams.

Subjective Standard Deviation

Subjective
ESPN Fox CBS USA Today Sports Illustrated ProFootballTalk NFL.com Pro Football Weekly SB Nation Reddit Associated Press ProFootballFocus Standard Deviation Change since last period
Jaguars 31 32 32 31 32 31 31 32 32 32 32 32 0.471 -0.410 Falling
Falcons 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 3 0.553 0.553 Rising
Packers 7 5 6 5 6 6 6 6 5 6 6 5 0.595 -0.942 Falling
Browns 30 29 29 30 29 29 30 30 30 30 30 28 0.646 -0.136 Falling
Chiefs 32 30 30 32 31 32 32 31 31 31 31 31 0.687 0.044 Rising
Giants 2 4 4 2 2 2 3 3 3 3 2 2 0.745 -0.338 Falling
Panthers 29 28 31 29 30 30 29 29 29 29 29 30 0.745 -0.603 Falling
Patriots 8 9 7 8 8 7 7 7 7 8 7 6 0.759 0.142 Rising
Steelers 10 12 12 13 12 12 12 12 11 12 12 13 0.759 -0.237 Falling
Vikings 9 8 9 11 10 10 10 9 9 9 10 11 0.862 -0.541 Falling
Texans 3 2 3 4 3 4 2 2 2 2 3 1 0.862 -0.029 Falling
Raiders 28 31 27 28 28 28 28 28 28 28 28 29 0.924 0.281 Rising
Seahawks 11 10 11 10 9 8 11 11 10 11 11 9 0.986 0.105 Rising
49ers 4 7 5 3 4 5 5 5 6 4 4 4 1.027 0.371 Rising
Ravens 6 6 8 7 7 9 8 8 8 7 8 10 1.106 -0.377 Falling
Bills 27 27 26 26 26 27 27 27 23 27 27 25 1.164 -0.937 Falling
Broncos 12 11 10 9 11 11 9 10 12 10 9 7 1.382 0.314 Rising
Bears 5 3 2 6 5 3 4 4 4 5 5 8 1.500 0.336 Rising
Buccaneers 26 22 28 27 27 26 25 25 26 24 26 23 1.656 0.660 Rising
Eagles 13 17 13 12 13 16 13 13 13 17 14 16 1.724 0.426 Rising
Titans 25 24 22 24 22 25 26 24 21 26 25 27 1.738 0.505 Rising
Colts 23 26 25 25 23 20 23 26 22 25 24 26 1.780 0.221 Rising
Bengals 22 20 17 22 24 19 19 23 18 19 22 21 2.062 0.519 Rising
Redskins 18 14 21 17 16 13 15 16 14 15 13 15 2.178 -0.244 Falling
Cardinals 14 19 18 19 18 14 16 17 16 13 19 20 2.216 -0.574 Falling
Lions 19 18 20 18 25 24 24 20 24 21 21 24 2.466 0.078 Rising
Jets 24 15 23 21 15 18 20 19 19 20 20 22 2.656 0.367 Rising
Chargers 17 23 16 15 20 22 17 14 15 16 16 18 2.722 -0.002 Falling
Cowboys 15 13 15 14 17 23 14 18 17 14 15 12 2.783 -1.078 Falling
Rams 21 25 19 20 21 15 22 22 27 22 23 19 2.925 0.135 Rising
Dolphins 16 21 14 23 14 21 18 15 20 18 18 14 2.981 -0.218 Falling
Saints 20 16 24 16 19 17 21 21 25 23 17 17 3.037 0.905 Rising

Observations:

  • Teams are shifting again as about half the teams have seen their Standard Deviation go up this week
  • Looks like pundits are getting the memo about the Bears and are reacting.

Objective Average

Objective
Football Outsiders Team Efficiency Team Rankings Sagarin BeatGraphs Aikman Efficiency Pro Football Reference Cold Hard Football Facts Average Change since last period
49ers 4 2 5 2 2 5 2 4 3.250 1.250 Rising
Texans 9 3 3 3 4 2 3 1 3.500 1.750 Rising
Packers 2 5 4 4 3 7 4 2 3.875 2.500 Rising
Bears 3 9 1 1 10 1 1 7 4.125 -2.500 Falling
Giants 1 4 6 5 25 4 5 3 6.625 -2.125 Falling
Falcons 8 13 2 6 7 6 9 5 7.000 -0.375 Falling
Broncos 5 1 9 7 9 17 7 6 7.625 2.250 Rising
Patriots 6 17 7 8 8 3 6 10 8.125 0.500 Rising
Seahawks 7 6 10 9 6 16 8 9 8.875 -0.125 Falling
Vikings 11 18 8 10 1 9 11 8 9.500 1.875 Rising
Dolphins 12 7 17 16 15 10 16 18 13.875 0.750 Rising
Rams 13 11 15 11 16 22 10 16 14.250 -0.125 Falling
Ravens 10 22 11 15 12 13 19 14 14.500 -5.250 Falling
Cowboys 18 8 13 13 14 21 13 19 14.875 0.250 Rising
Redskins 14 15 18 12 27 12 12 12 15.250 -0.625 Falling
Cardinals 19 24 20 14 5 15 14 11 15.250 -0.125 Falling
Lions 16 10 12 17 19 14 15 21 15.500 2.750 Rising
Steelers 21 16 16 19 20 11 20 15 17.250 2.500 Rising
Jets 17 19 14 20 17 24 18 22 18.875 0.750 Rising
Buccaneers 15 21 31 18 29 8 17 13 19.000 -2.000 Falling
Eagles 20 14 22 23 24 19 23 17 20.250 -3.250 Falling
Chargers 25 26 23 21 11 20 21 25 21.500 1.125 Rising
Saints 24 30 26 22 32 18 22 20 24.250 0.625 Rising
Panthers 22 12 29 25 31 25 24 27 24.375 -1.750 Falling
Bengals 23 23 27 26 23 26 25 23 24.500 -2.500 Falling
Colts 29 27 21 24 18 31 26 29 25.625 0.875 Rising
Raiders 26 20 25 30 21 27 29 28 25.750 1.375 Rising
Titans 30 29 19 28 13 28 30 30 25.875 3.000 Rising
Bills 27 28 24 27 22 30 28 24 26.250 -1.375 Falling
Browns 28 25 28 29 28 23 27 26 26.750 -1.125 Falling
Jaguars 31 31 30 31 26 29 31 31 30.000 -0.625 Falling
Chiefs 32 32 32 32 30 32 32 32 31.750 -0.250 Falling

Observations:

  • 49ers are back to being dominant.
  • After being a near-consensus top-pick in the objective rankings last week, and though they beat the Lions, the Bears have slipped a bit.
  • Those losses to the Cowboys and Eagles has really hurt the Giants' ranking on BeatGraphs.

Objective Standard Deviation

Objective
Football Outsiders Team Efficiency Team Rankings Sagarin BeatGraphs Aikman Efficiency Pro Football Reference Cold Hard Football Facts Standard Deviation Change since last period
Chiefs 32 32 32 32 30 32 32 32 0.661 -0.046 Falling
49ers 4 2 5 2 2 5 2 4 1.299 -0.701 Falling
Packers 2 5 4 4 3 7 4 2 1.536 -1.059 Falling
Bengals 23 23 27 26 23 26 25 23 1.581 -1.291 Falling
Jaguars 31 31 30 31 26 29 31 31 1.658 -0.937 Falling
Browns 28 25 28 29 28 23 27 26 1.854 0.200 Rising
Texans 9 3 3 3 4 2 3 1 2.236 -0.445 Falling
Bills 27 28 24 27 22 30 28 24 2.488 -1.708 Falling
Jets 17 19 14 20 17 24 18 22 2.934 0.291 Rising
Falcons 8 13 2 6 7 6 9 5 3.000 0.357 Rising
Seahawks 7 6 10 9 6 16 8 9 3.018 -0.174 Falling
Steelers 21 16 16 19 20 11 20 15 3.152 -2.134 Falling
Eagles 20 14 22 23 24 19 23 17 3.231 0.492 Rising
Lions 16 10 12 17 19 14 15 21 3.354 -1.615 Falling
Raiders 26 20 25 30 21 27 29 28 3.382 0.049 Rising
Dolphins 12 7 17 16 15 10 16 18 3.586 -0.412 Falling
Bears 3 9 1 1 10 1 1 7 3.655 2.544 Rising
Rams 13 11 15 11 16 22 10 16 3.666 -2.900 Falling
Ravens 10 22 11 15 12 13 19 14 3.841 0.610 Rising
Patriots 6 17 7 8 8 3 6 10 3.855 -1.482 Falling
Cowboys 18 8 13 13 14 21 13 19 3.919 -0.187 Falling
Colts 29 27 21 24 18 31 26 29 4.121 0.767 Rising
Broncos 5 1 9 7 9 17 7 6 4.270 -1.397 Falling
Vikings 11 18 8 10 1 9 11 8 4.388 1.036 Rising
Chargers 25 26 23 21 11 20 21 25 4.472 0.173 Rising
Saints 24 30 26 22 32 18 22 20 4.521 -0.662 Falling
Redskins 14 15 18 12 27 12 12 12 4.867 2.321 Rising
Panthers 22 12 29 25 31 25 24 27 5.384 -1.756 Falling
Cardinals 19 24 20 14 5 15 14 11 5.472 -1.094 Falling
Titans 30 29 19 28 13 28 30 30 5.946 3.742 Rising
Giants 1 4 6 5 25 4 5 3 7.088 3.313 Rising
Buccaneers 15 21 31 18 29 8 17 13 7.297 1.255 Rising

Observations:

  • Because the objective sites all use different models for ranking teams, when there's consensus, you can have faith in knowing that a team is performing well, or poorly, or somewhere in the middle.
  • That said, when seven of eight sites rank the Chiefs as dead last? Yeah, they're bad.
  • Conversely: the 49ers, Packers and Texans are definitely top-five teams for the most part.
  • Falcons, not so much consensus they're the best team. In fact, only one objective ranking has them near first, and that's Team Rankings with them at second. No other site has them above 5th place.

Overall Average

Subj vs Obj
Subjective Average Objective Average Average Change since last period
Texans 2.583 3.500 3.042 1.310 Rising
49ers 4.667 3.250 3.958 1.065 Rising
Falcons 1.167 7.000 4.083 -0.270 Falling
Bears 4.500 4.125 4.313 -0.955 Falling
Giants 2.667 6.625 4.646 -0.851 Falling
Packers 5.750 3.875 4.813 1.875 Rising
Patriots 7.417 8.125 7.771 0.678 Rising
Broncos 10.083 7.625 8.854 1.402 Rising
Seahawks 10.167 8.875 9.521 -0.964 Falling
Vikings 9.583 9.500 9.542 1.736 Rising
Ravens 7.667 14.500 11.083 -4.822 Falling
Steelers 11.917 17.250 14.583 2.247 Rising
Cowboys 15.583 14.875 15.229 1.834 Rising
Redskins 15.583 15.250 15.417 -0.423 Falling
Dolphins 17.667 13.875 15.771 0.860 Rising
Cardinals 16.917 15.250 16.083 -1.611 Falling
Eagles 14.167 20.250 17.208 -2.026 Falling
Rams 21.333 14.250 17.792 -0.639 Falling
Lions 21.500 15.500 18.500 0.352 Rising
Jets 19.667 18.875 19.271 0.451 Rising
Chargers 17.417 21.500 19.458 -0.236 Falling
Saints 19.667 24.250 21.958 2.480 Rising
Buccaneers 25.417 19.000 22.208 -1.753 Falling
Bengals 20.500 24.500 22.500 -2.136 Falling
Colts 24.000 25.625 24.813 1.210 Rising
Titans 24.250 25.875 25.063 2.647 Rising
Bills 26.250 26.250 26.250 -2.131 Falling
Panthers 29.333 24.375 26.854 -1.541 Falling
Raiders 28.250 25.750 27.000 1.244 Rising
Browns 29.500 26.750 28.125 -0.540 Falling
Jaguars 31.667 30.000 30.833 -0.464 Falling
Chiefs 31.167 31.750 31.458 -0.026 Falling

Observations:

  • Though they beat the Lions, the Bears have been passed up this week by three other teams.
  • Overall, the Chiefs still managed to get even worse this week, on their bye.
  • 5 of the top 6 teams are in the NFC, 2 of those in the NFC North.

Overall Standard Deviation

Subj vs Obj
Subjective Average Objective Average Standard Deviation Change since last period
Chiefs 31.167 31.750 0.735 0.061 Rising
49ers 4.667 3.250 1.338 -0.145 Falling
Jaguars 31.667 30.000 1.378 -0.683 Falling
Packers 5.750 3.875 1.414 -0.659 Falling
Texans 2.583 3.500 1.627 -0.440 Falling
Bills 26.250 26.250 1.813 -1.431 Falling
Browns 29.500 26.750 1.855 -0.437 Falling
Seahawks 10.167 8.875 2.151 -0.034 Falling
Patriots 7.417 8.125 2.532 -0.967 Falling
Raiders 28.250 25.750 2.567 0.089 Rising
Bears 4.500 4.125 2.594 0.537 Rising
Bengals 20.500 24.500 2.719 -0.013 Falling
Jets 19.667 18.875 2.798 0.352 Rising
Vikings 9.583 9.500 2.854 0.429 Rising
Colts 24.000 25.625 3.054 0.531 Rising
Broncos 10.083 7.625 3.145 -0.639 Falling
Cowboys 15.583 14.875 3.303 -1.101 Falling
Steelers 11.917 17.250 3.339 -1.206 Falling
Falcons 1.167 7.000 3.457 0.193 Rising
Redskins 15.583 15.250 3.514 1.012 Rising
Dolphins 17.667 13.875 3.732 -0.339 Falling
Eagles 14.167 20.250 3.852 1.140 Rising
Cardinals 16.917 15.250 3.948 -0.856 Falling
Chargers 17.417 21.500 4.056 -0.779 Falling
Titans 24.250 25.875 4.073 2.012 Rising
Lions 21.500 15.500 4.098 0.350 Rising
Panthers 29.333 24.375 4.222 -1.215 Falling
Ravens 7.667 14.500 4.224 0.432 Rising
Saints 19.667 24.250 4.330 0.571 Rising
Rams 21.333 14.250 4.749 -0.873 Falling
Giants 2.667 6.625 4.918 2.241 Rising
Buccaneers 25.417 19.000 5.730 0.478 Rising

Observations:

  • It should be of little surprise that the teams with the biggest differences in average also have the highest Standard Deviation. We'll get to that chart in a second.
  • See what I was saying before about the Falcons? They're actually middle of the pack as far as ranking consistency. The 49ers are the second most-consistent team ranked.

Difference in Averages

Subj vs Obj
Subjective Average Objective Average Standard Deviation Change since last period
Ravens 7.667 14.500 6.833 0.856 Rising
Eagles 14.167 20.250 6.083 2.447 Rising
Falcons 1.167 7.000 5.833 0.208 Rising
Steelers 11.917 17.250 5.333 -0.508 Rising
Saints 19.667 24.250 4.583 3.708 Rising
Chargers 17.417 21.500 4.083 -2.724 Rising
Bengals 20.500 24.500 4.000 0.727 Rising
Giants 2.667 6.625 3.958 2.549 Rising
Titans 24.250 25.875 1.625 -0.705 Rising
Colts 24.000 25.625 1.625 0.670 Rising
Texans 2.583 3.500 0.917 -0.879 Rising
Patriots 7.417 8.125 0.708 0.356 Rising
Chiefs 31.167 31.750 0.583 0.447 Rising
Bills 26.250 26.250 0.000 -1.511 Rising
Vikings 9.583 9.500 -0.083 -0.276 Rising
Redskins 15.583 15.250 -0.333 0.406 Rising
Bears 4.500 4.125 -0.375 3.091 Rising
Cowboys 15.583 14.875 -0.708 3.167 Rising
Jets 19.667 18.875 -0.792 -0.599 Rising
Seahawks 10.167 8.875 -1.292 -1.678 Rising
49ers 4.667 3.250 -1.417 -0.371 Rising
Cardinals 16.917 15.250 -1.667 -2.974 Rising
Jaguars 31.667 30.000 -1.667 0.322 Rising
Packers 5.750 3.875 -1.875 -1.250 Rising
Broncos 10.083 7.625 -2.458 -1.697 Rising
Raiders 28.250 25.750 -2.500 -0.261 Rising
Browns 29.500 26.750 -2.750 1.171 Rising
Dolphins 17.667 13.875 -3.792 0.219 Rising
Panthers 29.333 24.375 -4.958 0.417 Rising
Lions 21.500 15.500 -6.000 -4.795 Rising
Buccaneers 25.417 19.000 -6.417 0.492 Rising
Rams 21.333 14.250 -7.083 -1.026 Rising

Observations:

  • So the Ravens are the most overrated team this week. This doesn't surprise me much.
  • For whatever reason, the media really wants to believe in the Eagles.
  • Remember how I said that the media puts too much emphasis on record? See the Falcons and Steelers as significantly overrated?
  • After starting out strong, the Bengals have severely faltered.
  • Funny how the four most under-ranked teams are NFC teams, with two of them in the NFC South.

Best Match-ups for Week 8

Opponents (Ranking) Game Time Ranking Difference
Indianapolis (24.813) at Tennessee (25.063) Sun, Oct. 28 1 p.m. EDT 0.250
Washington (15.417) at Pittsburgh (14.583) Sun, Oct. 28 1 p.m. EDT 0.834

Worst Match-Ups for Week 8

Opponents (Ranking) Game Time Ranking Difference
Jacksonville (30.833) at Green Bay (4.813) Sun, Oct. 28 1 p.m. EDT 26.020
Carolina (26.854) at Chicago (4.313) Sun, Oct. 28 1 p.m. EDT 22.541

Sources

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