The first Power Rankings of the 2010 PFL season are FINALLY FUCKING HERE! Again, sorry for not having them out last week, but be prepared for the occasional week-without-PRs, as they are very labor intensive, and my dance-card is a LOT fuller these days. But I pledge to never go more than a week without doing the PR Write-ups. Just to recap the PR format for y’all: We the Media weight our analysis heavily on teams’ most recent performance, including bench play, but factor in previous weeks production as well. We also factor in the CBS PRs, which are based soley on a 3-category aggregate ranking score: CBS ranks all teams 12-1 in Record, Total Points, and Breakdown (which is a team’s “All Play” record), which leads to the PR score. For example, the #1 ranked team with a 35 is Cawley’s Teflon Dons, who are ranked tops in Points and Breakdown and get 12 points accordingly for each, and tied for tops in record, which therefore gets them 11 points. Got it? Often the PFL and CBS PRs will not jive, but we will always include the CBS ranks next to the team name, along with record, total points, and Last Week’s PFL rank. Got it? Good.
1.) TEFLON DONS (2-0; 243.9; cbs-1)
Brian Cawley’s Gotti Crew are #1 With A Bullet, appropriately enough, in this, the first Power Rankings of the 2010 campaign. The PFL’s highest scoring team thus far, the Teflon Dons followed up a WK-1 high of 126 with another impressive output of 117 in Week 2. Phil Rivers is off to a nice, consistent start, with 27+ and 24+ in the first two weeks, respectively. The running attack has also, well, hit the ground running, so to speak: Forte blew up in the passing game, with over 150 yards and 2 TD, en route to a huge 33+ WK-1, and added another 5 catches including a TD, good for 15+ in WK-2; Gore posted a serviceable double-digit Wk-1 (11.3) based on some rushing and 6 catches, but went off against the Saints on MNF for 32.3, thanks to 7 receptions that included a TD to go along with 112 RuYd and a RuTD. With these two excellent pass-catching RBs, not to mention a 3rd on the bench in Pierre Thomas (8 catches in Wk-2), Cawley is looking set at this position. Also, it looks like Miles Austin has picked up where he left off last season, with back-to-back 10-catch games to start the season, and a 22.4 avg. So the Dons have their #1WR all set too. Rivers, Gore, Forte, and Austin makes for QUITE the fearsome foursome. And Dustin Keller’s 21 (7rec,115ReYd,1TD) from the bench looks like a sign of FF greatness to come. Also, the Sainst DST are looking like they should be a productive unit throughout the season. The only possible rat in the Gotti Crew could come from the WR depth, or lack thereof. After Austin, there is little to strike fear into the hearts of Cawley’s opponents. Garcon was drafted to be the #2WR, but hasn’t even played like a #3 yet; same goes for Meachem and Naanee. Still, even without a productive #2WR, the Dons should crack the magic 100 mark most weeks based on their Big-4 alone; add some consistent production from another WR, and the TE slot, and you have a lethal team here.
2.) CLEAVELAND STEAMERS (2-0; 201.8; cbs-2)
Lex has not had much PFL success, since joining the PFL a few years back. But this year, Lex and his 2-0 Steamers are looking primed to shit all over the competition and make their 1st playoff appearance. This roster has performed well, top-to-bottom, and still has yet to get the most from a solid backfield. Aaron Rodgers followed up a dicey 2-INT, 16+ WK-1, with a big 30+ WK-2, that included a RuTD; this ability to run for TDs in the redzone makes the Packers QB THAT much more dangerous. The aforementioned RBs, specifically Ced Benson and Ronnie Brown, have been producing thus far – each scored a TD in WK-1, and rushed for over 75 yards in WK-2 – but have yet to post any 20s, which are forthcoming. The depth here is looking nice too: Donald Brown had one of his best games as a pro on Sunday night, with a TD and 69 RuYd; and recent waiver pick-up Brandon Jackson scored TD in place of injured Ryan Grant, for Green Bay. Perhaps the biggest news through 2 weeks for Cleaveland has been Wes Welker’s great start. In the Draft Grades, we said it was a calculated risk taking Wes at the end of 3rd as a #1 WR, and so far it is paying off, big time. Welker’s game has shown no signs of being hampered by his late-season knee blowout: He’s doing his usual reception thing, averaging 7 of them per game thus far. But now Welker is scoring TDs as well – 3 of them already – which could elevate The Great White Hope to elite WR status. Speaking of TDs, Donald Driver has scored a pair, and just continues to defy age and FF wisdom, as he remains Rodgers #1 safety valve and redzone target. If this wasn’t enough, Lex has some impressive WR depth so far: in WK-1 Gaffney had a TD; as did Collie, whose 73-yd TD contributed mightily to a huge 25.8 output, that also included another 10 receptions; Collie again scored in Wk-2. Oh, and Lex also has TO: scary depth here. And speaking of depth, how about D-Mac’s 426 bench passing yards? Not bad for a #2; McNabb looks good. And rounding out this very well built squad is an excellent K/DST combo: the Jets and Mason Crosby each scored 10 points in the first 2 weeks; Lex doesn’t have to worry about playing the matchups here, which is nice. The Steamers are looking fierce so far, and even though Cleveland, OH will never win a championship, CLEAVEland, CT certainly seems to be on the right track.
3.) THE WIGGLES (1-1; 214.4; cbs-3)
Miesse’s crew was solid enough in Wk-1 with 86+ in a losing effort to a tough B’More Omars squad (who scored 99), but they rebounded VERY nicely in Wk-2 to get their first victory and the week’s top scoring output as well, with 128. This big week is made all the more impressive when considering Brady’s poor outing – the Jets turned him over 3 times, and limited him to just under 16. Brady was on point in Wk-1, however, with 3TDs and 28+. Brady is gonna post big numbers this year, because the Pats ground game is virtually non-existent, as opposed to the Wiggles rushing attack, which is robust and downright scary through 2-weeks. Adrian Peterson could have his biggest season yet, based on his violent runs and return to the focal point of the Vikes offense. AP is even increasing his receiving totals, with 8 catches for 55 yards so far. LeSean McCoy is off to an outstanding start to the 2010 campaign, and is looking like Westbrook 2.0. He had solid production in Wk-1, with 5 catches for 47, and 35 RuYD and a TD, good for 16.7. But in Wk-2, the Real McCoy showed up in full berserker regalia, as he posted a career high with 120 RuYD and 3 TD, en route to an eye-opening 32.8. Sims-Walker was out for Wk-1, but came back strong in Wk-2 with 10 catches, 103 ReYD, and a TD; he’s proving to be a legit #1WR, for both the Jags and FF owners. Sims-Walker could be huge for Miesse, especially if Steve Smith (NYG) continues to be a dump-off afterthought in the Giants offense (9 catches thus far, but for only 78 yards and no TDs.) We killed the WR depth in the Draft Grades, but that is obviously not the case right now, as Jacoby Jones had a TD, 6 catches, and 14+ in Wk-2 from the bench. Also, Miesse made two very nice FA pickups to shore up his WR depth – Louis Murphy and Nate Washington each scored TDs this week (Nasty Nate’s 2nd in as many games.) They also have Housh, but he’s done nada thus far. The backup RBs, Cadillac and Ricky Williams, haven’t done shit either, but, barring injury, won’t be seeing starts anyway. The Wiggles seem to have a rock solid DST in Green Bay – Clay Matthews and his 6 sacks are better than many team totals. If Miesse can solve his TE issues – which he may have done by grabbing Mercedes Lewis – the Wiggles could field one of the more dangerous lineups week to week.
4.) NOCTURNAL EMISSIONS (2-0; 185.3; cbs-4)
The Jizms have not set the PFL on fire by any means, with a solid, if not imposing, 92.6 scoring avg, but they did break 100 in their Wk-2 victory, after being fortunate to win in Wk-1 with a pedestrian 82.6, over Prah and his paltry 57.5. Besides Mendenhall’s walk-off 50-yard TD in OT, this running game hasn’t got in gear. Turner was en route to a big Wk-2 with 75-yards on only 9 carries in the 1st half, but he tweaked a hammy, and Jason Snelling took over and went off for 39 points on nearly 200 all purpose yards and 3TDs. Fortunately for JC, he wisely chose Snelling over Norwood to handcuff Turner. Schuab only had 8 points in Wk-1, which was a big factor in the Emissions only scoring 82; but he bounced back in a BIG way in Wk-2, with almost 500 yards passing to go with 3 TDs, as he scored 36 and helped get the Jizms over 100. Jennings started off right in Wk-1 with a TD and 16.7, but disappeared in Wk-2, as the rest of Green Bay’s receivers got theirs; and with Malcolm Floyd, the opposite was the case, as HE got the big TD bomb from Rivers in Wk-2. The WRs are pretty shaky here after Jennings, at least until Floyd shows consistent production; the bench WRs have been downright awful: Aromashadu and Evans both scored nothing in Wk-2, despite being active. Santonio Holmes cannot come back from suspension soon enough. Besides the big game from Snelling in place of Turner, the bench RBs have been equally as bad, with the speedy Felix and Leon each not seeing enough touches to warrant a start. Finely had a disappointing start to the year, with only 4 catches for 47 yards, but came on strong with 4 for 103 in Wk-2. The Bengals DST also bounced back in Wk-2, dominating Flacco and the Ravens, after getting shredded by Brady and the Pats in Wk-1. This team is somewhat fortunate to be 2-0, as they’ve yet to reach their potential. If the running game can step up and perform like they’re supposed to, and Floyd can become Rivers’ #1 guy, then the Jizms should continue winning, but that is looking far from a sure thing at this point in the season.
5.) TOUGH TITTIES (1-1;195.3; cbs-7)
Swords had a tough opener, scoring only 70+ in losing to Lex and his 101. These things happen when Brees scores under 15, no 20+ outputs, and a handful of single digits, including the rare stinker from Andre Johnson, who only caught 3 passes for 33 yards. Dallas Clark was the only real baller in that one, with 11 catches, a TD, and 19.5. Bradshaw managed to find the endzone, and score a solid 14. But the pieces started to fall into place for Swords in Wk-2: Brees stepped up with 23, and Andre returned to form with 28, on 12 catches that included the game tying bomb, en route to 158 yards. And Bradshaw added a nice 89 yards, but no scores. Bradshaw is clearly the mailman in NY now, with Jacobs acting the fool and running like a bitch, all of which bodes very well for Swords and the Titties’ running game, as the season progresses. Bradshaw has become VERY important, especially in light of the slow start to Jonathan Stewart’s season and the suspect RB depth (Swords really needs Beanie Wells to get healthy, and step it up.) Depth a WR is also an issue after Andre, but Swords may have alleviated this issue by trading red-hot Jay Cutler to QB-starved Prah, for Santana Moss, who could post some very nice numbers with D-Mac throwing him the rock: Moss’s 10 catch, 89 yard Wk-2 is a VERY positive sign in this department. Good trade, that aided both teams, although Prah may end up with the better end of it if Cutler keeps it up. And speaking of Cutler and the Bears’ O, Swords has both Hester and Knox, each of whom has the potential to produce: the problem is figuring out which one is gonna get the most action. After being subjected to the whims of Hal5000’s selection method, Swords is looking solid, especially considering he currently is holding the league’s best D, the Steelrs, who suffocated the Titans O, shutting down CJ and taking the ball away 7 times, en route to a huge 27.
6.) PRAHBLO ESCOBAR (1-1; 182.3; cbs-8)
The Escobars had a huge bounce-back effort in Wk-2, with 124+ points, and all with Javid Best and his 45.7 left to rot in the hot sun of Don Prah’s bench. Prah needed very little of his scoring explosion to beat the woeful WFF, and in fact could have won by starting Best, and Best alone, as his 45+ output surpassed that of Kenyon’s ENTIRE TEAM, but more on HIS weak-ass later. After facing a dire QB situation with Kolb dealing with a concussion, Prah made a nice trade to acquire Jay Cutler, which paid off nicely, as Cutler posted a nearly flawless 3-TD, 29+ performance. This trade was made all the more important after the announcement that Vick will be the Eagles’ starting QB for the foreseeable future. And it is not like Prah even needs Santana Moss, what with a SICK starting WR combo of Roddy White and DeSean Jackson, not to mention rookie Demaryius Thomas and his breakout 19.7 performance (8 for 121, 1TD) from the bench. With Cutler on fire, and these WRs, this team is looking fierce, and we have hardly touched on the backfield. Yeah, Best in the truth, after going berserker in his 2nd game as a pro, against a decent enough Philly D. Steven Jackson is the perfect producer back to compliment Best, and should mitigate any off games from the rookie. And if Darren McFadden continues his strong play this year – he’s avergaing 20 FF points and 120 RuYd per game – this could be a backfield to be reckoned with; and Prah will have one of those “good problems:” which 2 of these 3 studs to start. Oh, and he’s got Owen Daniels at TE, who has yet to get off; but you know it is coming. The Escobars are ranked 6th here only because they’re still digging themselves out of the 57-point hole they dug for themselves in Wk-1; but look for this squad to go screaming up the PRs if the aforementioned trends continue.
7.) PIERCE & PIERCE (0-2; 204.3; cbs-5)
Larry is the PFL’s defending champ, and it seems that the Champion’s Curse is again in full-effect. The last three champs have seemingly faced an unusually hard slate of opponents, and their berserkers. Of course this makes sense in a weird sort of way, that the Champs get everyone’s A-game. So Larry lost in Wk-1, in spite of having 2 berserker games from Foster and CJ, with outputs of 42 and 29, respectively. But without any producers, a couple of berserkers can go for nought, much like what happen to Larry in Wk-1, when the rest of P&P only posted 43.28 to go along with the 71.3 from the two RBs. Romo was the only producer here, with 17; and Rackers added 10. Everyone else was in single digits, and Larry lost 126-114.6; tough one. In Wk-2, there were no berserkers, and still few producers. Foster added a solid 15+ to the cause, but CJ got shut down, which is understandable since he faced the Steelers’ ridiculous D. Romo posted another underwhelming, sub-20 performance. Calvin stepped up some, with a TD and 15. All this added up to a decent enough 89, but once again, Larry faced the week’s top scoring team, the Wiggles, who posted 128. Larry should fine: P&P has a great backfield with CJ, foster, and Portis, plus a stud WR in Megatron, but depth issues could bite this team going forward. The WRs – Massoquai, Crabtree, Edwards, and McCluster, are all spotty at best, and Cassel and Young don’t inspire too much confidence at QB, especially since Romo is not posting big numbers yet. Still, Romo will get his, as will CJ and Calvin; and if Foster is the truth, this team will be a tough out. They could use some help at TE to make this happen.
8.) ROCS IN SOCKS (1-1;189.5; cbs-5)
The Roccos have defied the Draft Grades, and have started the season very strong. Waiting awhile for Matt Ryan might have been a good call, because he’s looked very good thus far, and blew up for 3 TD passes and 25 points in Wk-2. The Rocs won a low-scoring squeaker over the Hairy Knuckles in Wk-1, 88-84, and lost a tough high-scoring shootout, 124-101, to Swords’ Tough Titties in Wk-2. Chris won in Wk-1 thanks to his imposing 3-Wide lineup: Smith(Car), Wayne, and 85 all scored TDs, and at least 16, with Ochocinco going off for 28. Chad fell off big in Wk-2, but Wayne and Smith still delivered with TDs and around 15 points worth of production. These 3 perrenial Pro-Bowlers must stave off the affects of aging, and injury, for Chris to be succesful this year, as he is getting little to no help from the running game. Deangelo has yet to get off, which is becoming a big concern, because after him, there is literally no one worth a start: Fred Jax, Chester, Maroney, and Jacobs all have major issues, to say the least, with Fred being the best option, which isn’t saying much. Celek is another player who needs to produce, and soon. He’s had less than 5 points in each of the first 2 weeks. This team is hanging tough, but has some SERIOUS questions that need answering.
9.) THE B’MORE OMARS (1-1; 169.9; cbs-9)
Last season’s PFL runner-up, The Omars started their season off right by defeating Miesse and The Wiggles with a nice 99.2 point effort. But upon closer inspection, the victory is somewhat tainted by the lack of producers in the lineup: Palmer and Nicks combined for 52.2 of the 99.2 that the Omars posted, leaving V.Davis and the Ravens DST as the only other double digits scorers, barely, with 11.3 and 10, respectively. Remember, 2 lone berserkers does not a victory make; just ask Larry. But as win is a win, that is, until you lose, which is what happened to McQ in Wk-2. The Omars got a few decent outputs against the Dons this past week, but with Carson Palmer falling WAY off from Wk-1 (24.7 to 6.58), and no 3TD games from a WR, Johnny Mac couldn’t make up for another week of pedestrian numbers: Ray Rice led the team with only 13.7. Speaking of Ray Ray: he’s gotten off to a slow start through 2 games, averaging a slight 10.5 per. And with the way AP has been running and catching, does McHugh have a little Homer remorse? Of course it is still early, but Rice needs to deliver bigtime if the Omars are gonna make any noise, and get back to the playoffs, especially since Shon Greene is already looking like a bust, as LdT is taking command of the feature back role for the NYJ. McHugh has little to work with on the bench vis a vis RBs: McGahee is a handcuff, and Mike Bush is still out, and may be McFadden’s cuff when he gets back, based on how well Run-DMC has been playing. At least the Omars are looking very strong at recivers: Vernon is a beast, and will post numbers; Nicks has the potential to be a big producer for the Giants; rookie Mike Williams, for Tampa, has been outstanding through 2 games, with a TD; same goes for Maclin, who also has 2 scores; and finally, Brandon Marshall, while yet to breakout, has plenty of big games ahead for him. We loved the Omars’ draft, but now, not so much; they are still dangerous, but need to shore up their RB depth, and they MUST have consistent good performances from Palmer.
10.) HAIRY KNUCKLES (0-2; 164.7; cbs-11)
It’s been a rather rude FF welcome to the PFL, for our new owner Goldie and his Hairy Knuckles. Not only are they 0-2, but they lost 1st round draft pick, Ryan Grant, for the entire season. And to add insult to literal injury, fellow Monroe homie, Lex, snatched up Brandon Jackson, Grant’s backup, with his #1 waiver priority; Goldie was #2. Ouch! That’s the bad news. The good news is that there is actually still a lot to like about this team. First of all, in Wk-1, HK would have beat Chris and the Rocs (they lost by less than 4) if Grant didn’t leave the game early with his season ending ankle injury. And in Wk-2, they faced a 100-point team in the tough Cleaveland Steamers (Lex has really got Goldie’s number, doesn’t he?) With that being said, it’s not like HK is lighting it up, averaging just over 82. But still, they have some promise. Goldie made a smooth move by grabbing Vick: This is huge because A.) Vick is playing very well – an impressive 27 starting for HK in Wk2 – and he is now the Eagles starting QB for the foreseeable future, and B.) Favre and Anderson are not getting the job done. The remaining RBs don’t necessarily scare you, but have some upside. Moreno could turn into a legit #1RB if only he can get more carries; enough with this Buckhalter shit! says Dave. LdT (We don’t call him LT, because there is only ONE LT) has been a nice surprise for the Jets; based on his good play, and Greene’s poor play, Tomlinson could be quite a dangerous option, especially with his pass-catching ability. Harrison has been kind of a bum, and loses carries to Hillis. But maybe Fred Taylor will get some play, now that Maroney is in Denver, and Kevin Faulk is IRed. The WR corps and TE are the strength of this team: Shiancoe is clearly Favre’s most dependable target; Boldin and Moss make for a fine 1-2 starting punch, with berserker Moss and producer Boldin complimenting one another perfectly. And the depth here is decent with Mike Williams(SEA), Breaston, and Gresham. The Hairy Knuckles have dug themselves a hairy hole, but could start making some noise if Vicks keeps playing out of his mind, and Knowshon Moreno takes his game to the next level.
11.) LOBSOSAURUS REX (1-1; 159.6; cbs-10)
Foster and LRex have really struggled to score so far this season, apart from Peyton Manning. Manning virtually won the game for LRex singlehandedly in Wk-1, with a huge 400+ yards, 3 TD, 35+ game. The rest of the squad was pretty miserable, with all single digits besides Gates and his 16 and Addai and his 10. But fortunately, Kenyon’s WFF were equally shitty, and Foster won a close contest, 80.8-74.2. It was the same story for LRex in the following week versus the Emissions: again, Manning and Gates produced, with 28 & 20 points, respectively, but that was about it. Addai added 12.3, to make him only the 3rd LRex player in double-digits. But Addai lost some carries and a TD to Donald Brown, which should seriously concern Foster; with Ryan Matthews out for at least a week or two, Addai becomes vital to this teams success. And when he was healthy, Matthews wasn’t doing a whole lot anyway. The RB depth is pretty thin: Barber just doesn’t get enough touches; Thomas Jones is looking pretty good, but he too is in a BFBC (BackFieldByCommittee.) At this point, it is looking like Foster is probably gonna have to go 3-Wide on occaison due to his RB issues. But does he have the WR corps? The answer is maybe. The problem is, that LRex doesn’t even have a true #1, just a bunch of 2s and 3s with upside. Bowe is garbage; Mason is solid, but can’t be counted upon; Ward is probably the best option now; and Mannigham has nice upside, but again, is in an offense that spreads it around, so he can’t be depended upon. The only thing that Foster has going for him, besides Peyton, is at the TE position; where he has two proven producers in Gates and Cooley. Do you smell that? Yes, there is definitely a doodie odor wafting from this team, but we’re smelling a trade for Cooley.
12.) WAKKA FLACCO FLAME (0-2; 117.8; cbs-12)
Well, what can we say about this team, other than, “It puts the lotion on Its skin!” Because Kenyon and the Wakka Flacco Flame are deep down in Buffalo Bill’s basement hole, aka #12 in the PRs. OK, so the Wk-1 loss to LRex wasn’t terribly horrid: Kenyon got a nice 16+ game from Jamaal Charles, who rushed for over 90 with a TD; MoJo also had a solid rushing total, with 98, but no scores; and Larry Fitz scored. But Flacco, as expected, struggled to score points against the strong Jets D. And unfortunately, Tony Gonzalez and Colston didn’t step up, with a combined 13.2. So Kenyon lost a close, low scoring affair, to Foster and LRex, 80.82-74.42. And now onto Kenyon’s nightmare in Wk-2, where the wheels fell right the fuck off this ride. As we mentioned earlier, the WFF were outscored by Javid Best, from Prahblo’s bench, 45.7-43.4. The rest of the Escobars went on to score 124+ in this blowout. Anatomy of a FF Abortion: The DST scores as many TDs as the rest of your lineup; which was Flacco’s lone TD pass, that helped mitigate the damage from his 4 picks; oh, and said DST only managed 1 point, even after getting a Dez Bryant punt return TD; MoJo catches ONE pass, has 48 total yards, and a LOST FUMBLE; Tony G has only 2 catches for 19 yards; your best player, with the lone double digit output, Larry Fitz, avergaed less than 12 yards per catch. Of course it is still early, and Kenyon and the WFF still have the stable to make some FF noise. But that’s all we have to say about this team, because, quite frankly, we’re disgusted right now.