AP Pro32 ballot from Kirwan

AP Pro32 ballot from Kirwan
November 6, 2012, 4:33 pm
Share This Post

Ballot and comments from AP Pro 32 panel voter Pat Kirwan of SiriusXM NFL Radio/CBSSports.com:

Week 10

PAT KIRWAN (SiriusXM NFL Radio/CBSSports.com)

1. Atlanta Falcons - The only undefeated team in the NFL has played well on both sides of the ball and doesn't panic when things are going bad.

2. Chicago Bears - The defense is going to break the record for scoring and Cutler to Marshall is on fire. I do worry about the pass protection with 14 sacks in the last three weeks.

3. Houston Texans - The Texans dominate teams but now hit the road to face the Bears. It will be interesting to see how they respond to adversity which they rarely see except for the Packer game.

4. Denver Broncos - The Manning offense is getting better each week and the defense is right behind the offense. When they force an opponent into a one dimensional pass attack Elvis Dumervil and Von Miller look like Dwight Freeney and Robert Mathis in their prime.

5. San Francisco 49ers - The Niners have been on a bye but not forgotten. They will climb right back in the top three in the next week or two.

6. New York Giants - Last year they went on a four-game losing streak in November which I do not think will happen again this year. They do need to get their linebackers healthy and some receivers not named Cruz have to step up.

7. New England Patriots - The bye was good for all the young players to get more work especially on the defense. Traded for the troubled but talented Aqib Talib. Tom Brady gets some of his weapons back and the offense is at home for the next two weeks. The Patriots have scored 180 points in the last five games.

8. Pittsburgh Steelers - The running game is alive no matter who the running back is, the short passing game is effective and the defense is back on top. The Steelers climb the rankings over the next few weeks.

9. Baltimore Ravens - The defense is in an adjustment period with the injuries but the offense needs to do more and take the lead. The run game will be there but the passing game needs to be more productive to hold the division lead.

10. Seattle Seahawks - Close to impossible to beat at home and there are still four home games starting this week with the Jets coming to town. Russell Wilson has thrown five touchdown passes in the last two games.

11. Green Bay Packers - It doesn't matter what Packer receivers are available, Aaron Rodgers will throw touchdown passes. The defense continues to incur injuries which now includes Clay Matthews. The defense faces Stafford, and Eli Manning in the next two weeks.

12. Tampa Bay Buccaneers - Coach Schiano has built attitude into this team and they are a tough out. Doug Martin is quickly becoming an elite RB and Josh Freeman is back to 2010 form. The problems are on defense, which gave up over 400 yards passing to the Raiders, The next four QBs they face are Rivers, Newton, Ryan and Peyton.

13. Indianapolis Colts - The whole country is pulling for coach Pagano and the team is playing with great focus. Andrew Luck already looks like Peyton Manning. Watch out for the Colts.

14. Detroit Lions - The Lion offense is back on track and the presence of running back Mikel Leshoure gives them some balance. The defense has injury issues and probably need to be supported by more scoring from the offense.

15. Minnesota Vikings - Christian Ponder is struggling and unless he improves quickly the two game losing streak will grow no matter how many yards AP runs for each week.

16. Miami Dolphins - Ryan Tannehill's game against the Colts last week was overshadowed by Andrew Luck's record breaking performance. Miami is a tough out and has two winnable games coming up.

17. San Diego Chargers - The Chargers are 4-2 in the conference and 3-1 in the division. As bad as they have looked at times they are one game behind the Broncos.

18. New Orleans Saints - A big win over the Eagles and a defense that got seven sacks makes the Saints look like a team that can make it to the playoffs. We'll find out this week with the undefeated Falcons coming to the Big Easy.

19. Dallas Cowboys - It's tough to figure out the Cowboys. At times they look overrated and the season is slipping away. I'm not sure they can rally the players and get on a run. They do face the Eagles this week who have their own issues.

20. Washington Redskins - After a fast start RG3 is dealing with defenses that have a plan for him. In the three-game losing streak the Skins are on, RG3 has been sacked eight times. The bye comes at a critical time for this team.

21. Cincinnati Bengals - Andy Dalton is in the middle of a sophomore slump and a four-game losing streak. The five sacks last week were as troubling as the interceptions. The defense is giving up 27 points a game in the losing streak and it doesn't get any easier with the Giants coming to town.

22. Philadelphia Eagles - What a mess in Philly! The defensive coordinator, Juan Castillo, was the fall guy for a team that has a lot more problems on offense with turnovers.

23. New York Jets - The running game has some life in it right now which helps stabilize the situation but are 1-4 in last five games and head to Seattle this week.

24. Arizona Cardinals - The Cardinals only gave up two sacks last week, which for them is an achievement. They are on a bye this week and that's a good thing for the Arizona quarterbacks. A five-game losing streak after a four-game winning streak to start the season is a hard pill to swallow.

25. Tennessee Titans - Matt Hasselbeck has now lost two in a row and Jake Locker was cleared to practice so expect the second year QB back on the field. It is looking less and less like this team will be a wild card team.

26. Oakland Raiders - Palmer threw for over 400 yards last week and he may have to do it every week if McFadden can't go or be 100 per cent. The Raider defense doesn't look like they can stop the run after rookie Doug Martin dropped 251 on them, and now they face Ray Rice.

27. Carolina Panthers - A much needed win over the Redskins stopped the bleeding at least for a week. A team without a GM will struggle the rest of the season. Peyton Manning is coming to town this week and the former Panthers coach John Fox.

28. Buffalo Bills - GM Buddy Nix said he doesn't want to leave Buffalo without securing a franchise QB. That says it all in western New York.

29. St. Louis Rams - Jeff Fisher is turning things around, but it is going to take time. Getting Danny Amendola back is very important. Since 2010 when Amendola plays the Rams are 10-12.

30. Cleveland Browns - No one can say this team doesn't compete. They play for 60 minutes every week but are simply too young to win a lot of games. They are on a bye this week and hopefully come back and get two or three more wins.

31. Jacksonville Jaguars - Without MJD, the Jags don't have much of a chance but they do play the Colts this week and did beat them earlier this season for their only win.

32. Kansas City Chiefs - Romeo Crennel told me he stepped down as defensive coordinator to be more visible to the offense and special teams. At this point, the Chiefs need to try anything to turn their fortunes around. Right now they are headed to the first pick in the draft, which isn't all bad.

---

Online:

http://pro32.ap.org/poll and

http://twitter.com/AP-NFL