Last week when I examined where the experts were ranking the Pittsburgh Steelers at the end of Week 1 the results were inconclusive at best, and sometimes downright discouraging.
I saw Pittsburgh ranked as high as #8 and as low as #19. One game is of course not enough to judge any one team, let alone two (see: Colts, Eagles, Seahawks), but now we have a better idea of what the 2015 Steelers are all about, and the future looks much brighter than it did seven days ago.
After dropping a 43 point bomb on the San Francisco 49ers, to nobody’s surprise the Steelers are surging up the power rankings online. Let’s take a look around and see where they fit.
NFL.com: #8 (up five spots)
“Whoa … gooooooooodnight. The Steelers put on a show versus the 49ers on Sunday. If Antonio Brown hasn’t convinced you he’s the best wideout in the game yet, he never will…”
ESPN: #4 (up nine spots)
“Can anyone slow the Ben Roethlisberger-Antonio Brown combo? Roethlisberger when he targets Brown this season: 18-of-22 (81.8 percent), 328 yards, 2 touchdowns.”
USA Today: #6 (up eight spots)
“Can’t complain about salvaging a split while all-pro RB Le’Veon Bell served his suspension.”
Yahoo Sports: #8 (up two spots)
“And to think, the Steelers offense adds the NFL’s best running back this week. They’re going to outscore a lot of teams.”
Bleacher Report: #7 (up six spots)
“Are you a person who really likes efficiency? Have you mastered ways to save time during your morning routine each day, like eating in the shower? (Don’t do that.) Then you should become a Pittsburgh Steelers fan immediately.”
Fox Sports: #11 (up nine spots)
The offense is operating at an elite level and Le’Veon Bell and Martavis Bryant aren’t even in the lineup…”
SB Nation: #7 (up five spots)
So there you have it: it appears that pretty much everyone agrees the Steelers are a top ten team, and if not they’re certainly headed in the right direction.
Here’s a few of my thoughts: ESPN is getting carried away by putting Pittsburgh all the way up at number four, but perhaps they’re trying to compensate for ranking them too low last week. Either way, putting the Steelers ahead of the Broncos, Seahawks and Jets is just a little bit too optimistic at this point.
On the flip side, Fox Sports is being too rough on the Steelers by ranking unproven teams and scrubs like the Panthers, Falcons and Bills higher than them.
For my money, the Steelers are not quite a top five team, but putting them only lower than number nine is too bearish given their unlimited potential on offense. If the team stays in this area for the remainder of the season they should be in contention for a playoff spot late in December.
What do you think of the Steelers’ power rankings around the web? Where would you put them?
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