I used to love checking out power rankings, not to take them too seriously, but just to get a general perception of how much the media valued one team over another. I can't believe that it is already Week 6 and I have not really checked out where the Browns were ranked for any of the past few weeks. When I did look, I was fairly surprised to see that even after the team's loss to the Titans before the bye and the perceived "issues" with Peyton Hillis, the Browns were ranked around the low 20's. Here is where SB Nation and ESPN ranked the Browns (as well as the rest of the teams in our division):
Sidebar: stuck in the sand refers to there being no drastic change in rankings from last week due to the bye.
3. Baltimore Ravens (3-1, LW: 2): Seems pretty clear to me they're going to win 12 or 13 games this year.
10. Pittsburgh Steelers (3-2, LW: 15): Pittsburgh is strange this year. One week, I think they're falling off and the next week they put out a dominant performance. Five touchdowns from your quarterback, plus that defense, will get it done.
16. Cincinnati Bengals (3-2, LW: 21): Didn't I tell you last week I'm back on the Cincy bandwagon? Because I am.
5. Ravens (LW: 5) In its three wins, Baltimore's average margin of victory is 25 points. (Walker)
8. Steelers (LW: 13): It's hard to explain, but QB Ben Roethlisberger (five passing TDs) often plays better when hurting. (Walker)
20. Bengals (LW: 21) These young Bengals have heart. All three wins are via fourth-quarter comebacks. (Walker)
23. Browns (LW: 22): Who knew Peyton Hillis' "Madden Curse" would come in the form of a contract dispute? (Walker)
I think the Steelers are tough to rank because of how hot and cold they have been. Then again, they do seem to have that same pattern year after year and eventually make the Super Bowl (yuck) "against all odds." The Eagles are another tough team to rank, but I'm glad to see them in the bottom two thirds of the rankings. The 49ers is the team that is making a lot of noise. At 4-1, do you see them as a powerhouse in the NFL, or are they just taking advantage of an easy schedule and capitalizing on the fact that things just happened to go their away against the Buccaneers?