Originally written on Midwest Sports Fans  |  Last updated 10/25/11

We are seven weeks into the NFL season and I have no clue what to make of it.

Teams are wildly inconsistent and we may have just had the worst week of games yet.

We had three nearly unwatchable games (Browns-Seahawks, Broncos-Dolphins, Ravens-Jaguars), the “return” of Carson Palmer, and the worst combination of prime time football games since ‘Nam. The Saints scored more points on Sunday night against the Colts (62) than the Rams have scored all season (56)! The best game this week was Vikings-Packers, which wasn’t really even that good of a game, just the least bad throughout the entire 60 minutes.

Through seven weeks of the season, I am sure of only three things:

  1. The Packers, Saints and Patriots are the only truly good teams in the league.
  2. The Colts, Rams, and Dolphins are the worst teams in the league since the ’08 Lions.
  3. The rest of the league is a cluster of inconsistent football.

Is this an affect of the shortened preseason and teams just aren’t used to each other yet? Maybe. Kind of hoping so. If this turns into a trend and we are getting handfuls of bad games each week, the NFL might start losing fans.

Trying to make Power Rankings this week was almost impossible, and I have almost nothing to say about any of these teams because I can’t figure any of them out, but I do want to touch on Christian Ponder a bit.

As I stated last week, I wasn’t quite sure if Ponder was ready to go. I was wrong.

The level of play that Ponder brought to the helm of the Vikings offense was vastly improved over anything we had seen over the first six weeks. Balls traveled more than five yards in the air, receivers were able to run after the catch, and the Vikings converted 56.3% of their third downs, up considerably from their season average of 36%.

Is he the next Aaron Rodgers? Probably not. He might not ever be better than fellow rookies Andy Dalton or upcoming opponent Cam Newton, but Ponder’s ability to move outside the pocket and his poise to continue to throw downfield has the Vikings looking closer to the team some of us expected they could be at the beginning of the season.

Oh, and someone please take away some of Chris Johnson’s “superstar” money and give it to Matt Forte. The dude is a beast.

Onto the list.

NFL Power Rankings: Week 8

1. Green Bay Packers 7-0
2. New England Patriots 5-1
3. New Orleans Saints 5-2
4. San Francisco 49ers 5-1
5. Pittsburgh Steelers 5-2
6. San Diego Chargers 4-2
7. Baltimore Ravens 4-2
8. Chicago Bears 4-3
9. Tampa Bay Buccaneers 4-3
10. Detroit Lions 5-2
11. Houston Texans 4-3
12. Buffalo Bills 4-2
13. Atlanta Falcons 4-3
14. New York Jets 4-3
15. Cincinnati Bengals 4-2
16. New York Giants 4-2
17. Dallas Cowboys 3-3
18. Philadelphia Eagles 2-4
19. Oakland Raiders 4-3
20. Kansas City Chiefs 3-3
21. Washington Redskins 3-3
21. Tennessee Titans 3-3
23. Carolina Panthers 2-5
24. Cleveland Browns 3-3
25. Seattle Seahawks 2-4
26. Minnesota Vikings 1-6
27. Jacksonville Jaguars 2-5
28. Arizona Cardinals 1-5
29. Denver Broncos 2-4
30. St. Louis Rams 0-6
31. Indianapolis Colts 0-7
32. Miami Dolphins 0-6

Also see this week’s Suck 4 Luck Power Rankings to see which teams are positioning themselves the best for a chance to draft the player Lane Kiffin describes as the “perfect QB.”

**********

* – Christian Ponder photo credit: REUTERS/Eric Miller via MinnPost.com

Contact the Author twitter.com/drewlange d.lange9@gmail.com
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