NFC East: Power rankings

Power Rankings: No. 23 New York Giants

December, 31, 2013
A weekly examination of the Giants' Power Ranking:

Preseason: 12 | Last week: 24 | Power Ranking since 2002

The Giants finish the season ranked 23rd in our weekly poll, better than only nine teams in the league in the eyes of our six-member panel. Which isn't out of line, since there are only nine teams in the league that finished with worse records than they did and their wins are easily downgraded by external factors. (They were the only team that got to play the Josh Freeman Vikings, for example, or the Matt Barkley Eagles.) You can argue their position relative to the other three 7-9 teams if you like. I had them ahead of the Titans but behind the Lions and Rams and ranked them 23rd overall. But it's all splitting hairs.

Ashley Fox was the highest on the Giants, ranking them 19th on her final ballot. John Clayton and I put them at 23, and the other three voters ranked them No. 22.

Mike Sando, Jamison Hensley and I will do one final live "Spreecast" chat to break down the entire final Power Rankings poll at 1:30 p.m. ET today. Just click on these little blue letters right here and come ask us a question.

Power Rankings: No. 26 New York Giants

December, 17, 2013
A weekly examination of the Giants' Power Ranking:

Preseason: 12 | Last week: 23 | Power Ranking since 2002

Getting shut out at home by the top-ranked Seahawks earned the New York Giants a three-spot drop in this week's Power Rankings. With two weeks to go, only six teams in the league rank worse in our panel's eyes than the Giants. Their remaining schedule includes a road game Sunday against No. 17 Detroit and a home finale a week later against the No. 31 Redskins.

I actually dropped them all the way to 28th this week on my ballot. The teams behind them in the rankings that I ranked ahead of them are the Browns and the Falcons. I mean, at least the Browns have Josh Gordon. The Giants' offense is a hopeless wasteland. There's not a measurably worse offensive team in the league right now, and the best thing you can say about the Giants' defense is that you can more or less count on it to play very hard.

Kevin Seifert also ranked the Giants 28th. John Clayton was the highest of our voters for Big Blue, putting them at 23. Jamison Hensley ranked them 24th, Ashley Fox 25th and Mike Sando 26th. Tough to argue with any of it.

Join Hensley, Sando and me as we break down this week's Power Rankings with a live Spreecast video chat at 1:30 p.m. ET by clicking on these little blue letters right here.

Power Rankings: No. 23 New York Giants

December, 10, 2013
A weekly examination of the Giants' Power Ranking:

Preseason: 12 | Last Week: 22 | Power Ranking since 2002

They win a game, they move up to No. 22. They lose a game, they drop to No. 23. This is the sad Power Rankings cycle into which the 5-8 Giants have fallen over the past month. They've shown enough to make us think they're not as bad as they looked whey they lost 37-14 to the Chargers. But they've also shown us enough to make us think they're not as good as they looked when they beat the Raiders. They're just this sort of below-average nonfactor of a team that looks a lot like the other mediocre teams around them in the rankings, and it's hard to get too worked up over their specific number.

For instance, I was surprised to see I was the highest on the Giants of any of our Power Rankings voters this week, ranking them No. 21. John Clayton and Jamison Hensley have them at No. 22. Ashley Fox puts them at 23. Kevin Seifert ranked them No. 26 and Mike Sando has them at 27. Top of my head, I would think there are more than five teams in the league that are worse than the Giants, but I'm not sure enough that I'd arm-wrestle Sando over it.

The Giants' remaining games are at home against the No. 1 Seahawks, at No. 12 Detroit and home against the No. 31 Redskins. Tough to see them finishing .500.

Anyway, Sando, Seifert and I will be doing our weekly Power Rankings "Spreecast" live video chat at 1:30 p.m. ET. Click on these little blue letters right here and come join in the fun.

Power Rankings: No. 23 New York Giants

November, 26, 2013
A weekly examination of the Giants' Power Ranking:

Preseason: 12 | Last week: 22 | Power Ranking since 2002

A home loss to the Dallas Cowboys drops the Giants one spot, and back into the bottom 10, in this week's edition of the Power Rankings. Four of our six voters, including this one, ranked the Giants 23rd. Mike Sando has them at No. 22. John Clayton has them at No. 24. So some fairly strong agreement on where they belong at this point in their 4-7 season.

I'm sure there are some Giants fans out there who'll be irked that they're a spot behind the Jets, but when you get down into the 20s in this kind of poll, you're more or less nitpicking. The case can be made that the Giants are a better team now than they were in September and early October, but the damage done by their 0-6 start has to be factored into any evaluation of their season to date, and it's not as though they've completely shaken off the problems that were on display during that time.

With five games left in the Giants' season, this week's Power Rankings offer good news in the form of the No. 29 Washington Redskins, as the Giants play them (A) next and (B) twice. Their other three games will be on the road against the No. 15 Chargers and No. 13 Lions and at home against our new No. 1 team, the Seattle Seahawks.

Sando, Kevin Seifert and I will host a live Spreecast video chat at 1:30 p.m. ET to discuss the Power Rankings, and we'd love to have you drop by and submit a question. Just click on these little blue letters right here to get to the chat.

Power Rankings: No. 22 New York Giants

November, 19, 2013
A weekly examination of the Giants' Power Ranking:

Preseason: 12 | Last week: 25 | Power Ranking since 2002

Yes, yes. Quite the jump. The New York Giants move from No. 29 two weeks ago to No. 25 last week to No. 22 this week. A full 10 teams rank worse than Big Blue in our latest poll. The Giants' rise is due to their current four-game winning streak, though voters understandably have questions about the caliber of the opponents vanquished during said streak as well as lingering concerns about how dreadful the Giants looked during the 0-6 start that preceded it.

I kept them at No. 24, which is right where I had them last week, and Kevin Seifert joins me with that ranking. I'm impressed with how much better they look; I just think I need to see them beat a real quarterback. Ashley Fox is buying in, though. She has the Giants at No. 17, and Jamison Hensley put them at No. 18. Mike Sando ranks them 20th and John Clayton has them at No. 23. So some variety here in terms of how the Giants' current hot streak is being evaluated. As we have discussed many times here, upcoming games against the No. 14 Cowboys, the No. 18 Chargers, the No. 2 Seahawks and the No. 11 Lions will offer good chances to move up. The only team left on the Giants' schedule that ranks behind them is the No. 27 Redskins, who they face twice in December.

Sando, Hensley and I will discuss the full Power Rankings in a live Spreecast chat at 1:30 p.m. ET. Just click on these little blue letters right here between 1:30 and 1:45 p.m. ET, and you can ask us a question. See you there!

Power Rankings: No. 25 New York Giants

November, 12, 2013
A weekly examination of the Giants' Power Ranking:

Preseason: 12 | Last week: 29 | Power Ranking since 2002

So yeah, three straight wins buys the New York Giants a four-point jump in this week's Power Rankings. Not everyone's impressed, of course. Mike Sando left them at No. 28 with teams like the Bills, Falcons, Texans and Steelers still in front of them. I personally had the Giants at No. 24 this week, along with Kevin Seifert and John Clayton. Ashley Fox put them at 26. And Jamison Hensley bumped them all the way up to No. 22. So some difference of opinion about just how good the Giants are at this point and how real this three-game winning streak is.

Two of the teams the Giants beat -- the No. 27 Raiders and the No. 30 Vikings -- rank behind them in the rankings. The other, the Eagles, are all the way up to No. 14 now that they're back to .500. This week's Giants opponent, the Packers, drop to No. 13 due to the absence of Aaron Rodgers. After that, the remaining five teams on the schedule are the No. 15 Cowboys, the No. 23 Redskins (whom they play twice), the No. 17 Chargers, the No. 3 Seahawks and the No. 9 Lions.

Join Jamison Hensley and me at 1:30 p.m. ET as we break down this week's Power Rankings in a live Spreecast video chat. You can join in and ask questions. Just click on these little blue letters right here.

Power Rankings: No. 29 New York Giants

October, 29, 2013
A weekly examination of the Giants' Power Ranking:

Preseason: 12 | Last Week: 29 | Power Ranking since 2002

A second straight victory wasn't enough to move the Giants up in this week's Power Rankings, as they stay put at No. 29 for the second week in a row. Little bit more variety in the way the panel looks at them, though.

John Clayton has them at No. 26, ahead of the Falcons, Steelers and Texans as well as the clear-cut bottom three. Ashley Fox, Mike Sando and Jamison Hensley all put them at No. 27. Kevin Seifert kept them at 29 and so did I, seeing little from their touchdown-free 15-7 victory over a quarterback-free Eagles team to warrant any kind of move up. They've split the season series with the Eagles, who have one more win than they do, and as we split hairs at the bottom of the poll I'm comfortable for now leaving them behind Philadelphia.

The Giants are on bye this week and return to action with three straight November home games against the No. 22 Oakland Raiders, the No. 8 Green Bay Packers and the No. 13 Dallas Cowboys.

Power Rankings: No. 29 New York Giants

October, 22, 2013
A weekly examination of the Giants' Power Ranking:

Preseason: 12 | Last Week: 31 | Power Ranking since 2002

Following their first win of the year, the Giants move up two spots in this week's Power Rankings. The two teams they jumped are the winless Buccaneers and the hapless Vikings, whom they beat on "Monday Night Football" in an utterly dreadful game between two teams fully deserving of spots at the bottom of our weekly poll.

I ranked them 29th on my ballot, and it was a no-brainer, really. Two winless teams and the team they beat are the only teams they can legitimately claim deserve to be ranked beneath them. The other five voters agreed -- the Giants are a unanimous No. 29, and there is also unanimity on the rankings of the three bottom teams.

Next week's opponent, the Philadelphia Eagles, rank 19th in the poll. After their Week 9 bye, the Giants get the No. 28 Oakland Raiders. So in theory, there's a chance to move up a little bit if they can play a decent game or two over the next few weeks.
A weekly examination of the Giants' Power Ranking:

Preseason: 12 | Last Week: 30 | Power Ranking since 2002

The worst part of this for Giants fans is that you can't really argue. It's entirely possible you could say they're better than the 0-4 Buccaneers, which is what Ashley Fox, Mike Sando and John Clayton did by ranking the Giants No. 30 and Tampa Bay No. 31 this week. But Kevin Seifert, Jamison Hensley and I ranked the Giants ahead of only the 0-5 Jaguars.

As I wrote after Sunday's loss, I think it's pretty clear that this is one of the two worst teams in the NFL, and the Giants are actually closer to the No. 32 spot than they are to No. 30. Statistically, the Giants' average game so far this year is a 36-16 loss in which they commit four turnovers, get one sack and rush for 57 yards. That, ladies and gentlemen, is a very bad team. If the Giants lose in Chicago and the Jags play the Broncos tough, they could find themselves one spot lower this time next week.

Power Rankings: No. 30 New York Giants

October, 1, 2013
A weekly examination of the New York Giants' Power Ranking:

Preseason: 12 | Last week: 29 | Power Ranking since 2002

I honestly do not know who would win a game between the Giants and the Jaguars on a neutral field right now, but that's the question at this point for me. I dropped the Giants to No. 31 on my own ballot, moving them behind Tampa Bay because at least the Bucs were in their game Sunday. The Giants are not competitive right now and fully deserving of their overall power ranking as one of the three worst teams in the NFL.

Kevin Seifert and John Clayton were the most generous to the 0-4 Giants this week, ranking them 29th. Jamison Hensley and I had them at No. 31. Jacksonville is the only team in the league with a worse scoring differential (minus-98) than the Giants' minus-85, and the next-worst team is St. Louis at minus-52. The Giants are bottom-of-the-barrel bad.

If you'd like to join us at 1:30 p.m. ET for our live Spreecast video chat about this week's Power Rankings, here's the link. Hope to see you there.

Power Rankings: No. 16 New York Giants

September, 10, 2013
A weekly examination of the Giants' Power Ranking:

Preseason: 12 | Last Week: 12 | Power Ranking since 2002

After opening the season at No. 12 last week and then committing six turnovers in their season-opening loss to the Dallas Cowboys, the Giants fall four spots in this week's Power Rankings. The Cowboys, Eagles, Rams, Saints and Bears all moved past them. The Redskins slipped behind them. John Clayton is the highest on the Giants, ranking them 14th, while Ashley Fox's 20th is their lowest mark.

Personally, I voted the Giants 11th last week and 15th this week. I only moved the Eagles up from 25th to 20th. I know others bumped them up more, but I tend to try not to overreact to one game if possible. If they're as good as they looked Monday night, it will bear itself out over the long term. Regardless, a ranking of 15th seems about right for the Giants, given preseason expectations and their performance in the only game we've seen them play so far. The problem is, with a home game against No. 3 Denver up next, followed by two more road games, the ranking could keep dropping through September.

Power Rankings: No. 12 New York Giants

September, 3, 2013
A weekly examination of the Giants' Power Ranking:

The New York Giants come in at No. 12 in our initial Power Rankings of 2013. They tied, actually, for 11th with the Indianapolis Colts but lost the tiebreaker because the Colts had the better record last season.

I voted the Giants No. 11, one behind the Dallas Cowboys, whom I apparently like a lot better than the rest of the panel does. (We'll see on that one. They have burned me before.) The voter who's highest on the Giants is Kevin Seifert, who ranked them 10th to start the season. Jamison Hensley and Ashley Fox each ranked them 14th, which was the lowest.

Pretty much fair enough, right? The Giants were 9-7 last season and did little to ostensibly improve, yet no one fears too low a floor with this team because it's always a contender. So if they show us reason to move them up, I imagine we will. But benefit of the doubt keeps them on the fringes of the top 10 at the beginning of the season. In the most unpredictable of leagues, "Giants probably won't stink" feels like a rare thing on which you can count.

Post-draft Power Rankings: NFC East

April, 30, 2013
You know it was coming. Yes, the draft is a seismic enough offseason event that it's worth shuffling the Power Rankings after it's done, and here they are. Let's see how the NFC East fared.

11. Washington Redskins (Pre-draft: 13). Not bad. A two-spot hop for a team that didn't have a first-round pick? The Redskins addressed needs, took some home run swings and got good value on the safeties they picked. They're a 2012 playoff team that's returning almost its entire roster intact -- assuming Robert Griffin III makes it back from his knee surgery okay. So they hang in a playoff spot in the rankings. I had them at 11. Jamison Hensley had them at 10. Mike Sando and John Clayton ranked them 15th.

12. New York Giants (14). A little bump for the G-men as well, after a standard Giants draft that saw them add pieces to the line that are as likely to help down the road as they are in the coming season. The Giants' offseason has gone well, though they do seem thin at linebacker and a secondary that didn't add much is going to have to play better than it did in 2012. I put the Giants 14th in my rankings, as did Jamison and Ashley Fox. Sando is the highest on Big Blue, ranking them 10th.

20. Dallas Cowboys (18). The near-universal overreaction to the Cowboys' draft continues, as they drop two spots. By now you know that I thought they did well, especially after the first round, and that I'm not as down on the first-round pick as everyone else is. So I have Dallas at 17, which is the highest of any of our voters. Jamison put them at 24, which is the lowest.

25. Philadelphia Eagles (26). We still don't know what to make of the Chip Kelly Eagles, and we likely won't until we see them on the field in real games come September. Their draft appears to have been a good one, and in general they've added some interesting pieces this offseason, not the least interesting of which is Kelly himself. Jamison and I put the Eagles at 23. Clayton has them all the way down at 27, and he is done with his segment.

The final NFL power rankings of the season are out, and here's a look at where our teams finished in the weekly poll.

8. Washington Redskins (Last week: 9; Week 1: 24). Seven straight wins and an NFC East title land Robert Griffin III and the Redskins in the top 10 to finish the season. I myself had them at No. 7, ahead of the Colts, who finished ahead of them in the poll. Decent variety here, with Jamison Hensley ranking the Redskins 6th, Mike Sando ranking them 8th and John Clayton and Ashley Fox putting them at No. 10.

14. New York Giants (15, 3). Obviously a very disappointing, playoff-free season for Eli Manning and the Super Bowl champions, who believed they could elevate themselves into the league's top echelon but finished instead with the same 9-7 record as last year. Every one of us ranked the Giants No. 14 in the final poll except Jamison, who has them at 15.

15. Dallas Cowboys (14, 14). Now, here's a team about which we were pretty much right all year. Sure, there were some stragglers. I think Jamison picked them to win the Super Bowl, actually. But for the most part, the Cowboys were looked at as a middling team that spent the season hanging around the middle of the rankings. And after Tony Romo threw three interceptions Sunday night to lose the NFC East title game to Washington, that's where the 8-8 Cowboys finish. I put them 15, as I did in Week 1. Clayton and Ashley had them 15 as well. Jamison ranked them 14th and Sando has the Cowboys at 18 to finish the season.

29. Philadelphia Eagles (29, 7). We've been over this and over this. The Eagles were a top-10 team when the season started that went 4-12 and cost Andy Reid his job as head coach. Total bottoming out. I obviously could not have been more wrong about them, as I put them No. 3 in my first rankings of the year and have them at 28 to finish the season. Sando, Clayton and Jamison rank them 29th. Ashley has them 30th. They were truly awful.

So that's it for power rankings, and now it's time to settle it on the field. As always, I welcome your thoughts.

Power Rankings: Redskins carry the flag

December, 24, 2012
Only one NFC East team left in the top 10 in this week's Power Rankings. Let's take a look at the way our division's teams stack up.

9. Washington Redskins (Last week: 8). They trade places in the rankings with the Colts, who are 10-5 and already in the playoffs while the Redskins are 9-6 and not in yet. I had them at 8 last week and kept them there (and the Colts at 9), but it's hard to argue with those who'd differ. I am one of three voters who rank them 8th. Ashley Fox has them 10th and John Clayton 12th.

14. Dallas Cowboys (10). Tied with the Texans for the week's biggest drop, the Cowboys could likely climb back into the top 10 with a win in Washington and the division title that would go with it, or finish the season in the middle of the pack where they've been all year and likely belong. I dropped them from 10 to 13 in my poll, not because I think their loss was especially bad but because I thought the Ravens, Bengals and Vikings all needed to move up. Jamison Hensley also has them 13. Clayton has them 14. Ashley and Mike Sando rank the Cowboys 15.

15. New York Giants (12). The Giants started the season at No. 3, ranked in the top 10 in 12 of the first 15 polls we did and peaked at No. 2 in Week Weeks 8 and 9. This right here is their lowest ranking of the season, and after consecutive losses by a combined score of 67-14 at the most critical time of the year, it's tough to argue. They were excellent at one point this season but now appear to be out of gas, and right now they're not a good team. John, Jamison and I have them at 15. Ashley puts them at 14 and Sando at 18.

29. Philadelphia Eagles (29). Not a lot left to say. They're trying, absolutely. They just aren't any good. Could they beat the Giants on Sunday? Sure. They almost always do. But they're going to settle in somewhere around this spot, and they've earned it. Sando and I put them 28, John and Jamison at 29 and Ashley at 30.

As always, I welcome your thoughts.