Each week, we’ll be scouring the net for team rankings from football experts, covering the previous week, and discussing them here. Let’s see what they have to say this week.
Average Ranking: 10.00 (previously 10.25)
CBS Sports – Pete Prisco – 9th (+1): They squeaked in by winning their final four. Now that they’re in, they could be tough to get out. Peyton Manning makes it so.
Cold Hard Football Facts -12th (+2): The Colts were the only team with a bottom-10 scoring defense to finish with a winning record (23rd overall, 24.3 PPG).
ESPN – Kuharsky – 10th (no change): If they play with the execution and poise we’ve seen in the past month, a playoff run is possible.
Fox Sports – 11th (no change): It wasn’t pretty, but the Colts got it done in the end against the host Raiders last week. And how about that performance from veteran RB Dominic Rhodes? I’d be stunned if the Colts lost to the visiting Titans, who are struggling badly now to keep things together.
National Football Post – xth ():
Haven’t updated their rankings.
NFL.com’s Collective Brain Trust – 10th (-1):
Michael Silver – 11th (no change): After that ridiculous botched snap near the end of last Sunday’s game, should Titans quarterback Kerry Collins and center Kevin Matthews get playoff shares?
Sporting News – 10th (no change): The team has refocused on running and stopping the run, and it’s paying off.
Sports Illustrated – Don Banks – 10th (no change): It’s almost refreshing for a change to not be batting around the issue of whether the Colts are wise to rest their starters in Week 17. This year, Indy has needed to keep the pedal to the metal and win out to reach the playoffs. But from the looks of it, you have to wonder if the starters for the Titans (the Colts’ Week 17 opponent) have been taking it easy for the last eight weeks or so.
Sports Illustrated – Peter King – 11th (-1): When the Colts were 6-6 last month we thought it was curtains. No way would they advance to the playoffs for a modern record-tying ninth straight year. But they edged four straight foes — by 2, 10, 5 and 3 points — and left the division in the dust, as usual.
USA Today – 9th (+1): Won last four games to clinch another AFC South title.
Walter Football – 9th (-1): Like the Eagles, the Colts would have been a Super Bowl contender if it weren’t for all the injuries. What a shame. This is also a shame – Reggie Wayne was named the starter in the Pro Bowl over Dwayne Bowe and Brandon Lloyd. Wayne has been awful this year by his standards. He actually led the league in drops. How is he starting in the Pro Bowl? Ridiculous.
Visit Walter’s site for more
WEEI in Boston – 8th (+2) Playoff experience is invaluable and the Colts are entering the postseason for the ninth straight time. As long as Peyton Manning is behind center, Indy has a chance. Once an area of weakness, the run game on both the offensive and defensive side of the ball has improved. In three straight games, the Colts held Maurice Jones-Drew, Darren McFadden, and Chris Johnson to under 50 yards on the ground.