A weekly examination of the Bengals' ESPN.com Power Ranking:
Preseason: 9 | Last Week: 8 | ESPN.com Power Ranking since 2002
Last week, during the lead-up to Sunday's game between the Cincinnati Bengals and Detroit Lions, we anticipated a significant jump for the Bengals in this week's ESPN.com Power Rankings if they won that game.
Well, they did win, outlasting the Lions 27-24 on Mike Nugent's game-winning 54-yard field goal. While the win did push them up in Tuesday's release of the Week 8 Power Rankings, the Bengals didn't jump as high as previously expected. They only climbed from No. 8 to No. 7. The Lions remained at No. 11.
Still, no matter how big or small any subsequent increases will be, the Bengals ought to be content right now in knowing they are considered a top-seven team and are an apparent lock for postseason inclusion. The Power Rankings cite only the Chiefs, Colts and Broncos as being better AFC teams than Cincinnati. That's quite an accomplishment. The Colts and Broncos just played arguably the biggest game of the season so far, and the Chiefs are still undefeated.
At 5-2, the Bengals have another chance to move up this weekend when they host the No. 15 New York Jets.