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A look back at ESPN'S 2003 Power Rankings

this is a discussion within the Saints Community Forum; http://espn.go.com/nfl/powerrank/ I thought it would be fun to look back at last year's ESPN power rankings. Notice 3- of their top 5 picks didn't even make the playoffs. Including their # 1 pick. 1. Tampa Bay Bucs Optimistic: Core of ...

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Old 05-08-2004, 03:01 AM   #1
Join Date: May 2004
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A look back at ESPN'S 2003 Power Rankings


I thought it would be fun to look back at last year's ESPN power rankings. Notice 3- of their top 5 picks didn't even make the playoffs. Including their # 1 pick.

1. Tampa Bay Bucs
Optimistic: Core of Super Bowl team returns intact.
Pessimistic: There's nowhere to go but down.

2. Raiders Optimistic: Team only seems to get better with age.
Pessimistic: But that age has to catch up to them at some point.

3. Eagles Optimistic: They still have Donovan McNabb and he'll keep them near the top of the NFC.
Pessimistic: Hugh Douglas' production won't be replaced by a rookie or anyone else on their roster right now.

4. Steelers Optimistic: While Baltimore, Cincinnati and Cleveland are improving, the Steelers are still the class of the AFC North.
Pessimistic: Anyone want to wager on Tommy Maddox having the same success in 2003 he had in 2002?

5. Titans Optimistic: Steve McNair just seems to win and 2003 should be no different.
Pessimistic: Eddie George isn't getting any younger -- 3.4 and 3.0 yards per carry the last two years is not good.

6. Patriots Optimistic: Offseason additions should improve defense.
Pessimistic: Running game is still a big question mark.

7. Falcons Optimistic: Two words: Michael Vick
Pessimistic: But can he follow up 2002 with a step forward?

8. Dolphins Optimistic: Ricky Williams was everything the Dolphins hoped for and should be just as good in 2003.
Pessimistic: Until the Dolphins find a way to win late in the season, who cares?

9. Packers Optimistic: Brett Favre is coming back, which is all Packers fans need to hear.
Pessimistic: Will talk of Favre's future be a distraction?

10. Saints Optimistic: With Deuce and Brooks, offense should continue to improve.
Pessimistic: They'll still find a way to stumble down the stretch.

11. Jets Optimistic: Chad Pennington emerged as a star last season and should continue to improve.
Pessimistic: But will his lack of arm strength catch up to him?

12. Chiefs Optimistic: If defense can improve a little, they'll be dangerous.
Pessimistic: Priest Holmes' health status sure doesn't sound good.

13. Colts Optimistic: With Peyton Manning, Marvin Harrison and a healthier Edgerrin James, Colts offense should be explosive.
Pessimistic: We're still waiting to see Manning win a playoff game.

14. 49ers Optimistic: Jeff Garcia and Terrell Owens will keep the 49ers in contention.
Pessimistic: Tai Streets came on last year, but this team is still too reliant on Owens.

15t. Bills Optimistic: Offseason additions on defense should help one of the league's most porous defenses.
Pessimistic: Despite the improvements, they're still probably the No. 4 team in their division.

15t. Rams Optimistic: The Rams still have the talent and with health should return to top form.
Pessimistic: Kurt Warner might never return to the level of an elite QB.

17. Broncos Optimistic: Mike Shanahan will turn Jake Plummer into an above-average NFL QB.
Pessimistic: Plummer is what he is and not even Shanahan can change that.

18. Giants Optimistic: Jeremy Shockey should continue to get better, meaning the whole offense will be better.
Pessimistic: Still not sure they have enough to stay with the Eagles.

19. Vikings Optimistic: Won last three games and enter 2003 believing they've turned a corner.
Pessimistic: Defense is still not close to being playoff-caliber.

20. Seahawks Optimistic: Matt Hasselbeck emerged as No. 1 QB and Koren Robinson emerged as No. 1 WR.
Pessimistic: Defense is still shaky and counting on Hasselbeck might be risky.

21. Browns Optimistic: After making the playoffs last season, 2003 should bring even better things.
Pessimistic: The Browns were lucky to make the playoffs last year and actually took a step back with offseason losses.

22t. Browns Optimistic: With a healthy Ray Lewis expected back, defense should be better than average.
Pessimistic: It won't matter how good the defense is if the offense can't find the end zone.

22t. Redskins Optimistic: Offseason additions -- especially Laveranues Coles -- will make 'Skins better.
Pessimistic: Can second-year QB Patrick Ramsey avoid Steve Spurrier's quick hook.

24. Chargers Optimistic: Addition of David Boston gives Drew Brees much needed weapon.
Pessimistic: He might have been old, but the Chargers will miss Junior Seau.

25. Panthers Optimistic: Team took a big step forward in John Fox's first season.
Pessimistic: Despite some additions, offense is still far from being on a playoff level.

26t. Bears Optimistic: Anthony Thomas is apparently in great shape.
Pessimistic: Kordell Stewart is not the answer at QB in Chicago.

26t. Bengals Optimistic: Marvin Lewis seems to have things on the right track.
Pessimistic: It's too easy to say, but Mike Brown is still in charge and they're still the Bengals.

28. Cowboys Optimistic: The day he walked in the door, Bill Parcells made the Cowboys a better.
Pessimistic: They have three years to win, because that's about as long as Parcells will be around for.

29. Jaguars Optimistic: Suprisingly active in free agency, Hugh Douglas and Mike Peterson will help on defense.
Pessimistic: Mark Brunell might not have enough left in the tank for another playoff run.

30. Lions Optimistic: Steve Mariucci should be good for at least a few wins.
Pessimistic: A two-game improvement would still make Detroit just 5-11.

31. Texans Optimistic: More weapons and experience should make David Carr happy.
Pessimistic: They're still going to struggle to score points.

32. Cardinals Optimistic: At leasy Emmitt Smith will sell more tickets.
Pessimistic: Losses of Jake Plummer and David Boston would be hard for a good team to overcome -- and this team wasn't good.

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