|Published:||Sep 04, 2012 6:23 PM EDT|
|Updated:||Sep 05, 2012 6:31 AM EDT|
NEW YORK (AP) - Ballot and comments from AP Pro 32 panel voter Dan Pompei of Chicago Tribune:
DAN POMPEI (Chicago Tribune)
1. Green Bay Packers - Addition of Cedric Benson could give Packers dimension they lacked.
2. New York Giants - A little beat up at cornerback, but pass rush should be able to compensate while they get healthy.
3. New England Patriots - Questions about running game have not been cleared up heading into season, but still one fine football team.
4. Baltimore Ravens - Offense should be better than ever, but Ravens still need to figure out how to replace Terrell Suggs.
5. San Francisco 49ers - Team so solid all-around that it's difficult to envision them not being highly competitive.
6. Pittsburgh Steelers - Losing Dave DeCastro was blow for Steelers, but they've dealt with offensive line injuries well in past.
7. Houston Texans - Everyone expects them to be good. But with a little luck, they can be better than that.
8. Chicago Bears - Team needs Brian Urlacher not only to be on field, but also to be playing like he did in 2011.
9. Kansas City Chiefs - The more you see of this team, the more you like it.
10. Detroit Lions - Matthew Stafford and Lions receivers might be able to pass for 800 yards against Lions secondary, which is both comforting and disturbing to Lions fans.
11. Atlanta Falcons - Team has flown way under radar through camp and preseason, but that might not last long.
12. New Orleans Saints - With Will Smith suspended four games and Aaron Kromer feeling his way as interim head coach, Saints could get off to rocky start.
13. Philadelphia Eagles - Heat is on Andy Reid, but he usually responds pretty well in such situations.
14. Cincinnati Bengals - Would have been nice if another receiver had stepped up in camp other than A.J. Green, but this still is a pretty good team.
15. Denver Broncos - Now that we can be reasonably sure Peyton Manning can still tear heart out of a defense, there's good reason to believe in this team.
16. San Diego Chargers - They have had some tough injuries early, but can get through them if defense plays as well as it can.
17. Carolina Panthers - Panthers offense starting to look like it can be very scary for opposing defenses.
18. Oakland Raiders - Might take some time for Dennis Allen's program to start hitting on all cylinders, but there is some talent here.
19. Tennessee Titans - Jake Locker has looked good so far - let's see if he can keep it up when games mean something.
20. Dallas Cowboys - Tony Romo could be in for a big season if his offensive line can keep him upright.
21. New York Jets - Looks like defense is going to have to be awfully good to offset shortcomings of offense.
22. Tampa Bay Buccaneers - Will go as far as Josh Freeman takes them. Questions remain whether or not he can recapture his 2010 form.
23. Seattle Seahawks - They are taking gamble on Russell Wilson, but they still can turn to Matt Flynn if Wilson struggles.
24. Indianapolis Colts - No question Colts can be better than initial projections. Andrew Luck is ready now.
25. Washington Redskins - RGIII looks like he's ready to make plays, but he might not have enough help around him.
26. Arizona Cardinals - With John Skelton starting at QB, the Cardinals' ceiling may be limited.
27. Buffalo Bills - Remains to be seen if Mario Williams can be Reggie White II. Bills need to pick it up on offense to give Williams pass rush chances.
28. St. Louis Rams - Early line on Rams: better, but not yet where they want to be.
29. Minnesota Vikings - Christian Ponder needs to have Adrian Peterson healthy and running hard.
30. Jacksonville Jaguars - Maurice Jones-Drew came back in nick of time, but this team still has some issues.
31. Cleveland Browns - Lots of inexperience on Browns roster, and that could make for a long season.
32. Miami Dolphins - Trading Vontae Davis and starting Ryan Tannehill tells you about the direction of this team.
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