Brett Favre is a Jet.
The Packers are starting over with Aaron Rodgers.
Everything has gone to hell.
How disastrous, or dare I say beautiful, would it have been if Ted Thompson and the Packers caved to Favre’s demands, and we started the season with a Favre v.s Rodgers epic battle?
Sadly, we will never know. Unless, of course, the stars align just right, and we see the Jets and Packers in the Super Bowl.
Then we have the Chargers, last year’s AFC Championship surprise, trying to re-assemble their team with four stars who are, for all intents and purposes, still pretty banged up.
Antonio Gates is still stumbling around with his big toe, Rivers and LT are still recovering from knee surgery, and Shawne Merriman doesn’t want to go under the knife. Something’s got to give, and I get the feeling it’s Merriman’s knees.
Last but not least, the constant over-analyzation of Tom Brady and Peyton Manning’s injuries, or lack there of.
What happened to routine surgery and letting a guy relax for a chance? I guess when you’re famous commerical-doting, Super Bowl winning quarterbacks, you can’t exactly go limping around the mall without making Sportscenter.
And this was just the off-season.
Without any further haste, because we all would hate to keep the drama train from running wild off the tracks, here are the Power Rankings for the end of the pre-season:
|1 (1)||16-0||Bum foot or no bum foot, Tom Brady is still Tom Brady, and he still has Randy Moss. Besides, his foot is safe behind that mammoth offensive line.|
|2 (2)||13-3||If the Patriots stay at number one with Brady’s injury, why should it be different for Manning and the Colts? Losing Jeff Saturday could hurt.|
|3 (4)||13-3||Are the additions of Felix Jones and Pacman Jones really enough to push this team over the hump? Something tells me the season lies completely in Tony Romo’s hands.|
|4 (5)||11-5||Four of their stars are coming back from major injuries, and Merriman shouldn’t even be playing. There is cause for major concern in San Diego.|
|5(6)||11-5||The whole Matt Jones thing could be a distraction, but since when wasn’t he a distraction? Jack Del Rio is doing a fine job of keeping his team focused. For now.|
|6 (9)||10-6||They bolstered their ground game through the draft and free agency, and landed Limas Sweed as Hines Ward’s potential replacement. Now that defense just needs to stay consistent.|
|7 (3)||13-3||Sure, Rodgers has looked solid in pre-season, but it’s not the real thing. Something tells me Monday Night in front of the nation will rattle Rodgers, and the trade of Favre will haunt Green Bay the rest of the season.|
|8 (7)||10-6||Holmgren’s last hurrah? Yes, but not in the way he hopes. Hasselbeck might win a Super Bowl some day, but not with a running game so suspect.|
|9 (10)||10-6||After what we saw in the pre-season, Brady Quinn is delivering very mixed signals as to how prepared he is to take over, should Derek Anderson falter. Donte Stallworth better finally emerge as a solid receiver.|
|10(12)||10-6||It’s only been six months and suddenly the Giants are without last year’s starting defensive ends and their star tight end. The Super Bowl hangover is well under way.|
|11 (14)||8-8||Kevin Curtis won’t be out for as long as some fear, and DeSean Jackson will, at least for that short amount of time, be enough of an answer. Donovan Mcnabb has a huge chip on his shoulder.|
|12 (18)||7-9||Enough hype and predictions. Can Reggie Bush be the guy, or what?|
|13 (15)||8-8||Even if Tarvaris Jackson makes strides, who is he going to throw to? If the Vikings are to win the division, as many predict, AP needs to run for over 1,500 yards.|
|14 (17)||8-8||Ken Wisenhunt showed his commitment to winning by declaring Warner the starter. But if it doesn’t work out, he’s done in Arizona.|
|15 (8)||9-7||This was a vastly overrated team that benefited from a cakewalk schedule. They should have landed Brett Favre.|
|16 (11)||10-6||As far as the running game goes, they have all the weapons for success. But I still have not seen anything out of Vince Young that warrants his status as a franchise passer.|
|17 (16)||8-8||If Matt Schaub can find a way to distribute the ball, and not just zero in on Andre Johnson, he’ll be a candidate for 4,000 yards and the Texans could compete for a wild card spot. Why Ahman Green is still a starter is beyond me.|
|18 (13)||9-7||Jim Zorn is a quarterback wizard, which could see Jason Campbell make the leap to the elite. If the Redskins are going to be successful, though, they need a healthy Clinton Portis to dominate.|
|19 (19)||7-9||Jay Cutler, as young as he is, is on the verge of greatness. He desperately needs a playoff year to rid of that Vanderbilt label as a loser.|
|20 (21)||7-9||If they can split the first two games without Steve Smith, it will show a lot of character for the team. Jonathan Stewart brings a whole new dimension to the new power running scheme.|
|21 (20)||7-9||A new starter at every offensive position, except tight end? That spells trouble.|
|22 (23)||7-9||So, it’s Chad Ocho Cinco, then? Great. He’s not being a distraction at all.|
|23 (31)||4-12||I liked them as a sleeper team from the beginning, and with Favre they have a real chance at the playoffs. But they face New England twice. It won’t be easy.|
|24 (22)||7-9||They could really make some noise. It all hangs on Trent Edwards’ progress.|
|25 (25)||5-11||Mike Nolan made the right decision. Alex Smith wasn’t playing well enough to start, and O’Sullivan played well enough to finally get the chance he deserves. He should still be on a short leash, though.|
|26 (24)||7-9||It’s Kevin Smith or bust. It’s painfully obvious that Jon Kitna airing it out will never be the answer.|
|27 (26)||4-12||They have a number of rookies that could make an immediate impact. Too bad they still have Brodie Croyle as their starter.|
|28 (30)||3-13||Everyone is healthy, signed, and ready to go, yet I’m not excited. The offense looked lost and rusty in pre-season. What makes anyone think that will change come week one?|
|29 (28)||4-12||Is Matt Ryan better than Chris Redman? Sure. But who would you rather see get beaten to a pulp as you drop to 0-5? That’s what I thought. Big mistake.|
|30 (27)||5-11||Joe Flacco is the starter? What happened to Steve McNair and the Ravens being title contenders? Ray Lewis has to be disgusted.|
|31 (29)||4-12||Darren McFadden remains the lone bright spot until Jamarcus Russell shows some real potential. That offensive line is still hard to watch.|
|32 (32)||1-15||Chad Pennington might get his revenge against New York once or twice this season, but any more than that is wishful thinking. This team is still a horrible offensive mess.|