Tuesday, November 13, 2012
AP Pro32 ballot from Gosselin
Ballot and comments from AP Pro 32 panel voter Rick Gosselin of Dallas Morning News:
RICK GOSSELIN (Dallas Morning News)
1. Houston Texans -- Arian Foster has scored a touchdown in all nine of the Texans' games and is their MVP candidate in an 8-1 season. He has 12 touchdowns in all, 10 rushing and two receiving.
2. Atlanta Falcons -- The Falcons may have lost their bid for perfection, but not their grasp on the NFC South. The 8-1 Falcons still have a three-game lead over Tampa Bay and a four-game lead on the Saints.
3. Chicago Bears -- The Bears have already intercepted 19 passes this season and forced 30 turnovers. Chicago leads the league in both categories.
4. San Francisco 49ers -- The 49ers have allowed the fewest points in the NFL (127) and the fewest yards in the NFC.
5. Baltimore Ravens -- The Ravens are an AFC-best 5-0 at home this season and have now won 15 consecutive games there. Three of Baltimore's next four games are on the road, though.
6. Green Bay Packers -- The Packers are coming off their bye and frankly, the arm of Aaron Rodgers needed the week off. He has thrown at least 30 passes in all nine of Green Bay's games thus far.
7. New England Patriots -- Only five quarterbacks have thrown more passes this season than the 358 of Tom Brady -- but none have thrown fewer interceptions (three).
8. Denver Broncos -- The Broncos have the best balance in the league this season, ranking third in the NFL in offense and sixth in defense. A player like Peyton Manning makes both sides of the ball better.
9. Pittsburgh Steelers -- This was the worst weekend of the NFL season for quarterbacks with four of them knocked from games with injuries: Ben Roethlisberger of the Steelers, Jay Cutler of the Bears, Alex Smith of the 49ers and Michael Vick of the Eagles.
10. New York Giants -- Eli Manning has gone three games without throwing a touchdown pass for the slumping Giants. He has passed for fewer than 200 yards in two of them. He appears to have a tired arm.
11. Indianapolis Colts -- In the six games since Indy's bye, rookie quarterback Andrew Luck has rushed for as many touchdowns (five) as he has thrown.
12. Seattle Seahawks -- Thankfully, this is the final weekend of NFL byes. The Seahawks, Giants, Titans and Vikings all have Week 11 off.
13. Minnesota Vikings -- Adrian Peterson has scored five touchdowns in the last four weeks and averaged 157.3 yards per game during that stretch.
14. New Orleans Saints -- Drew Brees topped 300 yards passing in five of the first six games this season. But he has been under 300 in each of his last three starts.
15. Tampa Bay Buccaneers -- Josh Freeman has steered the Bucs to four wins in their last five games to rekindle playoff hopes with a 5-4 record. He has thrown 13 TD passes against just one interception during that stretch.
16. Dallas Cowboys -- The Cowboys played six of their first nine games on the road in their 4-5 start. This weekend they begin a three-game homestand and all three are win-able -- 2-7 Cleveland, 3-6 Washington and 3-6 Philadelphia.
17. Cincinnati Bengals -- Geno Atkins leads all NFL defensive tackles with seven sacks this season. He led all tackles in 2011 as well with 7½.
18. Detroit Lions -- The Lions play two home games in a span of five days -- the Packers on Sunday and Texans on Thanksgiving.
19. San Diego Chargers -- Phillip Rivers has thrown nine interceptions and lost three fumbles in the Chargers' five losses this season.
20. Arizona Cardinals -- The Cardinals have scored the fewest points in the NFC this season. But a top 10 defense has kept them on the periphery of playoff contention at 4-5.
21. Tennessee Titans -- The Titans are the only NFL team that has allowed 300 points this season. Chicago put 50 on them, Detroit 40 and five other teams have scored in the 30s.
22. Miami Dolphins -- The Dolphins are the only team in the AFC that has scored more touchdowns on the ground (11) than through the air (six).
23. St. Louis Rams -- Steven Jackson has rushed for a disappointing 504 yards this season, averaging a paltry 3.7 yards per carry for the 3-5-1 Rams.
24. New York Jets -- The Jets are 0-2 against the NFC this season and now head to St. Louis. They are one of the few AFC teams struggling against the other conference in 2012. The NFC holds a 25-16 edge in the series.
25. Philadelphia Eagles -- The Eagles are knee deep in the longest losing streak of the Andy Reid era (five games). Rookie quarterback (Nick Foles) will make his first NFL start for Philly this week.
26. Washington Redskins -- Robert Griffin III leads all NFL quarterbacks with 526 yards rushing, six touchdowns and six fumbles.
27. Buffalo Bills -- The Bills hired Dave Wannstedt to fix the defense and signed free-agent DE Mario Williams to fix the pass rush. But Buffalo has slid from 26th in the NFL in defense in 2011 to 31st this season.
28. Oakland Raiders -- Raiders QB Carson Palmer has thrown an interception in five consecutive games for the fading Raiders.
29. Carolina Panthers -- The Panthers are the only team in the NFC that has scored more touchdowns on the ground (nine) than through the air (eight).
30. Cleveland Browns -- The Browns, Cardinals, Packers and Redskins all return from byes this week. Cleveland is 7-11 in games following bye weeks.
31. Kansas City Chiefs -- Matt Cassel is the only quarterback in the NFL that has thrown an interception in every game he has started.
32. Jacksonville Jaguars -- The Jaguars have lost six games in a row, including the last three without defending NFL rushing champion Maurice Jones-Drew because of an injury.
http://pro32.ap.org/poll and http://twitter.com/AP-NFL