Saturday, June 27, 2009

NFL Team Rankings For A Decade

Okay, I gave the great celebrity death day a look, but now that whole Michael Jackson situation has devolved into a series of tributes and a group of quidnuncs who are obsessed with finding out what killed him.

The man is dead, so unless some earth shattering news comes to the front, it's time to move back to sports.

ESPN used this week to release their version of the NFL team rankings for the past decade. Unlike most biased ESPN rankings (best players, best Super Bowl winners, etc.) this one is pretty fact based and hard to argue with. Win and rank high, lose and rank low. Pretty straight forward.

The best and worst teams on the list are no brainers. The top teams are the Patriots, Colts, Steelers, and the other perennial playoff contenders of the past ten years. The worst teams are the ones that
still suck: Bengals, Browns, Texans, and, of course, the sad sack Lions.

There we
re a few surprises in the rankings though. For instance, the Cardinals were a Santonio Holmes circus catch from winning the Super Bowl, yet rank near the very bottom for the past decade. I wonder how far the Cardinals would have moved up if the team had won the big game.

The Raiders are the biggest joke in the NFL these days, but they were one of the better NFL teams earlier this decade. Don't be surprised if the Raiders crawl out of the basement in the few years even with a walking corpse running the team.

The Dallas Cowboys are always at the forefront of greatest franchise discussions, but the t
eam has been in the bottom third of the league rankings this decade. Zero playoff wins and a string of 5-11 seasons early in the decade have tarnished the Cowboys place with the other great franchises. Jerry Jones has proven himself to be a terrible team builder, so don't expect the Cowboys to rocket up the rankings any time soon.

The Redskins keep handing out gigantic contracts to big named free-agents, but the team has generally sucked for the entire decade. They had a playoff win a few years back, but considering the money spent on players, there is very little return.

those great Kansas City Chief teams with Priest Holmes and Larry Johnson running the ball down everyone's throat? Yeah, the Chiefs still suck for the decade and are ranked behind the Raiders. That surprised me.

It's hard to remember everything that happens over the course of a decade, so this list just reminds us which team was once good and which teams are still terrible. One thing everyone learned though: never hire Matt Millen as your general manager.

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