We’re going to start something new this week….individual power rankings in the NFL for MVP, coach of the year and rookie of the year. We may expand this to separate entries, since frankly it’s difficult picking just three of each. But here is what we’re thinking so far after the first quarter of the season….
1. Peyton Manning, Indianapolis Colts—With all due respect to Drew Brees and Peyton’s little brother, there is no way in hell the Colts would be 4-0 without Peyton. And he’s doing it with young receivers not named Harrison and Gonzalez.
2. Brett Favre, Minnesota Vikings—Favre mostly handed off to his stud RB Adrian Peterson the first two weeks, then made himself comfortable with a game winning pass with 2 seconds left against the Niners, and a fierce performance including 3 TDs against his former employer Monday night. Again, without Favre, is this team 4-0? Probably not.
3. Steve Smith, New York Giants—Are you kidding me? This guy has not only made everyone forget about Plaxico Burress, but he’s on pace to catch 136 passes, which would be second in NFL history for a single season. Smith is the only receiver in the league averaging 100 yards per game (102.8) and has 4 scores.
Honorable Mention: Drew Brees, Saints; Adrian Peterson, Vikings; Jared Allen, Vikings; Elvis Dumervil, Broncos; London Fletcher, Redskins; Antwan Odom, Bengals
Coach of the Year
1. Josh McDaniels, Denver Broncos & Marvin Lewis, Cincinnati Bengals—This one is a tie because each coach is connected by that one play at the end of Game 1, which, if it went the other way, Lewis would be 4-0 and McDaniels 3-1. But the bottom line is, each of these teams has pretty much shocked the football world to this point.
2. Mike Singletary, San Francisco 49ers—The 3-1 Niners are a Brett Favre clutch play away from being 4-0. We all knew they’d be improved, but raise your hand if you expected a 2.5 game lead in the division at this stage.
3. Rex Ryan, New York Jets—With a rookie quarterback, the Jets stormed out to 3-0 until being halted by the white hot Saints. Ryan has this team believing in defense.
Honorable Mention: Sean Payton, Saints; Tom Coughlin, Giants; Jim Caldwell, Colts; and heck, Brad Childress should get a nod for having the balls to coax Favre back.
Rookie of the Year
1. Mark Sanchez, New York Jets—Before last weekend, this guy was reminding New Yorkers of Joe Namath. And that’s really saying something.
2. Matthew Stafford, Detroit Lions—Okay, so he’s not killing it, but he’s had his team in more than just the game they won.
3. James Laurinaitis, St. Louis Rams—One of the lone bright spots on a pathetic team, Laurinaitis has 25 solo tackles and 9 assists to lead all rookies.
Honorable mention: Knowshon Moreno, Broncos; Kenny Britt, Titans
Posted in: NFL
Tags: Adrian Peterson, Antwan Odom, Brad Childress, Brett Favre, Cincinnati Bengals, Coach of the year, Denver Broncos, Detroit Lions, Drew Brees, Eli Manning, Elvis Dumervil, Green Bay Packers, Indianapolis Colts, James Laurinaitis, Jared Allen, Jim Caldwell, Joe Namath, Josh McDaniel, Kenny Britt, Knowshon Moreno, Mark Sanchez, Marvin Lewis, Matthew Stafford, Mike Singletary, Minnesota Vikings, MVP, National Football League, New Orleans Saints, New York Giants, New York Jets, NFL, Peyton Manning, Plaxico Burress, Rex Ryan, Rookie of the Year, San Francisco 49ers, Sean Payton, St. Louis Rams, Steve Smith, Tennessee Titans, Tom Coughlin