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Patriots stay on top of NFL Power Rankings

Scott Cullen
9/12/2012 8:17:19 PM
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Through the first week of the NFL season, there is no change in the top spot of the TSN.ca NFL Power Rankings, which means the New England Patriots remain perched above the rest.

After that No. 1 ranking, however, there are changes.

It's not entirely about major reactions to one week's results (the first couple rankings are still anchored by player production from last season), but there have been some adjustments after some lopsided outcomes.

The Atlanta Falcons, with a new high-octane offence, put up 40 points at Kansas City and climbed from nine to four. Atlanta's opponents in Week Two, the Denver Broncos, found that Peyton Manning still has some game, orchestrating a win over Pittsburgh in his Broncos debut, and moved from 13 to eight.

Beating the reigning Super Bowl champs on their home field was a fine start, but it was just as important for the Dallas Cowboys to get tight end Jason Witten and wide receiver Miles Austin back from preseason injuries. The 'boys gained five spots, going from 20 to 15.

Coming into the season, the New York Jets weren't giving fans much reason for optimism, struggling throughout the preseason, but when the bullets started to fly in the regular season, the Jets destroyed the Buffalo Bills, holding a 41-7 lead midway through the third quarter on their way to an easy win. As a result, the Jets were lifted from 22 to 17.

Of course, for all the teams rising on the board, there are corresponding teams sliding down.

Pittsburgh's opening night loss to Denver, along with the absence of All-Pro linebacker James Harrison, caused them to drop from six to 11, while the Giants, surprised at home by Dallas, slipped from seven to 13.

Blown out by New England, Tennessee, fell from 14 to 21, and the Cincinnati Bengals were steamrolled by the Baltimore Ravens, falling from 15 to 24.

For these teams, espcially, they can hope that Week Two provides an opportunity for market correction; otherwise, it's difficult to turn the tide when starting the season in a hole.

Scott Cullen can be reached at Scott.Cullen@bellmedia.ca and followed on Twitter at http://twitter.com/tsnscottcullen. For more, check out TSN Fantasy on Facebook.

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