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Tuesday, June 14, 2011
Power Rankings: No love for our LTs

By Kevin Seifert

This week's installment of ESPN.com's positional power rankings was quiet for the NFC North. None of our left tackles were ranked among the top 10.

Two received votes: Chad Clifton of the Green Bay Packers and Jeff Backus of the Detroit Lions. Clifton appeared on three ballots, ranking as high as No. 6 for AFC West colleague Bill Williamson. Backus appeared on one ballot, the one submitted by yours truly.

In making that distinction, I stayed consistent with the February discussion that ranked Backus over Clifton for our 2010 All-NFC North team. Whether Backus deserved to be among the top 10 is a fair debate, but I looked at the group and saw a pretty significant drop-off after the top five or six. To me, Backus was as deserving as any other candidate for a spot in the bottom third of the vote.

The Minnesota Vikings' Bryant McKinnie neither received, nor really merited, any discussion for this ranking. And as of now, the Chicago Bears haven't identified their left tackle.