November 29, 2011

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NFL Power Rankings

By: Joe Williams

1. Green Bay Packers (11-0) — Sunday’s game at the Giants could be the biggest remaining hurdle towards 16-0. How bad do the Packers want to run the table?

2. New England Patriots (8-3) — With a two-game lead and the tiebreaker on their side, the Patriots have almost locked up the AFC East. The schedule sets up well for a run at home-field advantage.

3. New Orleans Saints (8-3) – Drew Brees and the Saints offense was unstoppable against New York on Monday Night Football. Can they outscore Detroit this week?

4. Baltimore Ravens (8-3) – The Ravens stay on top of the AFC North with a Thanksgiving Day win in the Harbaugh bowl. Now they must avoid any more letdowns.

 5. San Francisco 49ers (9-2) – Despite the loss, the Niners show they can compete with the NFL elite. They can clinch the NFC West with a win against St. Louis.

 6. Houston Texans (8-3) – The Texans pick up another win but lose another quarterback. Now it’s up to rookie T.J. Yates to lead a playoff run.

 7. Atlanta Falcons (7-4) – Atlanta has won five of the last six. Sunday’s trip to Houston looks more winnable with the Texans down to the third-string quarterback.

 8. Detroit Lions (7-4) – The Lions really need a win at New Orleans. It will be that much harder to slow down the Saints without Ndamukong Suh.

 9. Pittsburgh Steelers (8-3) – It wasn’t pretty in Kansas City but a win is a win. Huge game in the AFC North this week against Cincinnati.

 10. Dallas Cowboys (7-4) – America’s Team has moved to the top of the NFC East with four straight wins. They need to make it five in a row before a critical meeting with the Giants.

 11. Chicago Bears (7-4) – The Bears missed Jay Cutler on Sunday. If they are going to make the playoffs they need to beat the Chiefs and Broncos in the next two weeks.

 12. Cincinnati Bengals (7-4) – The Bengals continue to exceed expectations. If they can do that on Sunday and beat the Steelers, it would go a long way towards getting them to the playoffs.

 13. Oakland Raiders (7-4) – It’s a two team race in the AFC West. Oakland has a one-game lead but the more difficult schedule.

 14. New York Jets (6-5) – The Jets got back on track with a win over Buffalo. They should pick up a couple more wins with Washington and Kansas City in the next couple weeks.

 15. Tennessee Titans (6-5) – The Titans beat Tampa Bay in what was essentially an elimination game. They can knock the Bills out with a win this week.

Can the Titans continue to make a run at the Playoffs?

 16. New York Giants (6-5) – The Giants are in big trouble after losing three straight and the undefeated Packers are up next. The good news is they still play the Cowboys twice so they can control their fate.

 17. Denver Broncos (6-5) – Tim Tebow gets all the credit but the Denver defense has allowed just 15 points per game in the last five wins. Can they shut down Adrian Peterson this week?

 18. Buffalo Bills (5-6) – The Bills are on life support after four losses in a row. They will have to run the table for the week 17 game at New England to matter.

 19. Philadelphia Eagles (4-7) – With the loss to New England, the Eagles have a stranglehold on the most disappointing team of the year. How much worse will it get?

20. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (4-7) – The Bucs are another disappointing team in the NFC. They need to beat Carolina to avoid falling into last in the NFC South.

 21. Arizona Cardinals (4-7) – The Cards have won three of four and they could get Kevin Kolb back this week.

 22. San Diego Chargers (4-7) – What happened during their bye week? The Chargers were 4-1 before the bye and are now 0-6 after.

 23. Miami Dolphins (3-8) – The Dolphins have won three of four. They could give the Bills a run for third in the AFC East.

 24. Washington Redskins (4-7) – They broke the six-game losing streak against Seattle. They could start a new streak with three teams fighting for the playoffs coming up next.

 25. Minnesota Vikings (2-9) – The Vikings have lost three straight. If they don’t find a way to beat Tebow it could become six straight with the Lions and Saints coming up.

 26. Seattle Seahawks (3-7) – The Seahawks blew a 10-point lead against Washington. At least they have a short week to think about it.

 27. Carolina Panthers (3-8) – The Panthers are much better than last year but aren’t getting many wins to show for it. But they have found their quarterback.

 28. Kansas City Chiefs (4-7) – The defense played well against the Steelers but the offense couldn’t get it going. Will they turn to Kyle Orton this week?

 29. Jacksonville Jaguars (3-8) – Jack Del Rio has been fired. This franchise has a lot of work to do.

30. Cleveland Browns (4-7) – They put up a fight against Cincinnati but came up short. And there’s more bad news; four of the last five games are against Baltimore and Pittsburgh.

31. St. Louis Rams (2-9) – The way this team has played its hard to find another win on their schedule. The best chance appears to be at Seattle.

32. Indianapolis Colts (0-11) – The Colts could make a run at 0-16. They are at New England and Baltimore for the next two.

November 11, 2011

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NFL Players are Fathead’s Top Sellers for (11/3 – 11/10):

By: Junior

It is past the halfway mark in the NFL season, and NFL players are dominating Fathead product sales. With NFL teams and fans rising and falling with their favorite NFL Players, it makes sense that all 10 of our top sellers came from the NFL this week. It is also not surprising that it all kicks off with 3 products from the 8-0 Green Bay Packers.

1. Aaron Rodgers – Home

Being the QB of an 8-0 football team I am sure has a lot to do with this. Being the Super Bowl Champion (as well as Super Bowl MVP) the previous year can’t hurt either. Having a funny commercial out at the same time? Well that’s just the icing on the cake. Put all of that together, and Rodgers having the top selling Fathead this week is a no brainer.

2. Aaron Rodgers

See above.

3. Clay Matthews – No. 52

As much as we would like to take sole credit for this with the great Clay Matthews Fathead commercial we have out right now, we know better. Matthews is one of the most feared linebackers (and Fatheads) in the game right now, and with a Monday night game coming up, his sales are only going to continue to rise.

4. Troy Polamalu / 5.  Troy Polamalu – Home

Steelers fans stocked up on Polamalu Fatheads as they geared up for their rivalry game with the Baltimore Ravens last week. So much so in fact that Troy was the 4th and 5th best selling Fathead. While a loss certainly spoiled Steeler Nation’s mood, they at least got to come home to a life size version of Polamalu.

6. Michael Vick

Eagles fans didn’t let a loss stop them from believing in the Eagles surge to make a comeback after stumbling out of the gate.  Winning 2 of their last 3, Michael Vick is leading the league with 8 YPC this season and is a large part of why Eagles fans still have faith. With Arizona coming to town this week, Eagles fans are hoping they have even more reason to believe.

7. Cam Newton

The front runner for NFL Rookie of the Year, Cam Newton is the face of the Carolina Panthers. Coming off of a 3 Touchdown, 0 Interception game last week, Newton looked good even in a Carolina loss. Panthers fans obviously couldn’t stand not to see Newton this weekend (Carolina’s bye week), hence the spike in sales for the rookie QB.

8. Clay Matthews Mural

See #3. This also could have spiked as a result of people being afraid to order the Clay Matthews #52 version due to the recent commercial. Just a theory.

9. Drew Brees Quarterback

New Orleans took a big step last week in securing the NFC South lead. With their win over Tampa Bay, they now shift to Atlanta, and a win there would give them a little more cushion in the division.  Saints fans geared up and made Drew Brees the 9th best seller this week. Having thrown 8 touchdowns to just 3 interceptions in his last 3 games, Drew Brees is getting New Orleans ready to make a run for the playoffs.  

10. Tom Brady

Nothing soothes the pain of a 2 game losing streak like the purchase of your QB’s fathead. With a big AFC East matchup this weekend with the Jets, New Englanders bought up Brady Fatheads so they could still be with Tom while the team is on the road. A win over the Jets would do a lot to calm Patriots fans fears, and possibly for Brady’s Fathead sales.

November 1, 2011

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NFL Power Rankings

By: Joe Williams

1. Green Bay Packers (7-0) — The Pack has not lost a meaningful game in a long time, but it is a little premature for the 16-0 talk to begin.

2. Baltimore Ravens (5-2) — Impressive comeback against the Cardinals but they shouldn’t have been down that much to begin with. Their game in Pittsburgh on Sunday will be huge.

3. New England Patriots (5-2) – The loss to the Steelers could prove costly in the playoff seeding tiebreakers.

4. Buffalo Bills (5-2) – A win over the Jets Sunday would go a long way towards getting Buffalo back to the playoffs.

5. Detroit Lions (6-2) – They will have an extra week to enjoy that beating they gave Tebow and the Broncos.

6. Atlanta Falcons (4-3) – They got some help Sunday when the Rams knocked off the Saints. NFC South race is wide open.

7. New Orleans Saints (5-3) — I have a feeling that loss to the Rams is going to hurt when we get to January.

8. Pittsburgh Steelers (6-2) – They beat the Patriots on Sunday, and they will have a huge edge in the AFC.

9. San Francisco 49ers (6-1) – They just keep winning and could be on their way to a first round bye.

10. Houston Texans (5-3) — Andre Johnson should be back this week and the Texans should handle the Browns.

11. New York Jets (4-3) — The next two weeks against the Bills and Patriots are critical for the Jets to climb back in the race. They must win at least one of those games.

12. New York Giants (5-2) — The schedule is really tough the rest of the way. Will a two game lead be enough to hold on in the NFC East?

13. Chicago Bears (4-3) – Can the defense slow down the Philadelphia offense? We will find out on Monday Night Football.

14. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (4-3) — Anyone else think the Saints will be ready to go when the Bucs travel to New Orleans on Sunday? Tampa cannot afford to fall two games back with a loss.

15. San Diego Chargers (4-3) — Rivers will be kicking himself all week for the fumbled snap against the Chiefs. Once again the Chargers find a strange way to lose a game.

16. Tennessee Titans (4-3) – Chris Johnson has to get going if the Titans are going to stay in the race much longer.

17. Philadelphia Eagles (3-4) – Philly finally looked like the team everyone thought they would be in their win against the Cowboys.

18. Cincinnati Bengals (5-2) – We will find out how good the Bengals are in the next three weeks against Tennessee, Pittsburgh and Baltimore.

19. Oakland Raiders (4-3) – Moved into a first place tie without even playing and Denver is coming to town. Things are looking up.

20. Kansas City Chiefs (4-3) – Miami and Denver could have the Chiefs at 6-3 before the schedule gets really hard.

21. Dallas Cowboys (3-4) – America’s Team has the easiest schedule of the NFC East teams but it won’t matter if they play like they did Sunday night.

22. Washington Redskins (3-4) – With three straight losses, Washington has gone from the top of the NFC East standings to the bottom in a hurry.

23. Minnesota Vikings (2-6) – Christian Ponder looks like he could be the starter for a while in Minnesota.

24. Carolina Panthers (2-6) – Cam Newton will be the starter for a long time in Carolina.

25. Jacksonville Jaguars (2-6) – 12.25 points per game doesn’t win many games in this league.

26. Cleveland Browns (3-4) – Colt McCoy needs more weapons.

27. Arizona Cardinals (1-6) – Blowing that lead against the Ravens hurts. Suddenly, Sunday’s game against the Rams doesn’t look so easy.

28. St. Louis Rams (1-6) – Looking to make it two wins in a row against the Cardinals.

29. Seattle Seahawks (2-5) – The loss to Cincinnati was much closer than the score would suggest.

30. Denver Broncos (2-5) – Bronco fans got what they wanted with Tebow taking over for Orton. Unfortunately, it looks like Denver’s opponents also got what they wanted.

31. Miami Dolphins (0-7) – Should have beaten the Broncos and almost beat the Giants. They will win soon.

32. Indianapolis Colts (0-8) – They have a one loss lead in the Andrew Luck standings. This team has more problems than no Peyton Manning.

October 6, 2011

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Fathead’s NFL Power Rankings

By: Joe Williams

NFL Rankings:  As we approach Week 5 of the NFL season, here is how each of the NFL teams stacks up.

1.Green Bay Packers (4-0) — As the “Nature Boy” Ric Flair would say, “To be the man, you’ve gotta beat the man.” Until someone beats the Pack, they will be at the top of the rankings.

2. Baltimore Ravens (3-1) — After opening the season by dominating the defending AFC champion Steelers and blowing out the AFC runner-up Jets on Sunday, the Ravens are the class of the AFC.

3. New Orleans Saints (3-1) — Drew Brees and company gave the Packers all they wanted and followed that with three solid wins.

4. Buffalo Bills (3-1) — After pulling off the shocker of the year and beating New England, the Bills get beat by the Bengals.

5. New England Patriots (3-1) — Tom Brady’s offense hasn’t been held under 30 points yet.

6. Detroit Lions (4-0) — They won’t be undefeated much longer if they keep falling behind by 20 points.

7. Houston Texans (3-1) — Wade Phillips has got the defense playing much better.

8. New York Jets (2-2) — A two game losing streak makes this trip to New England huge for the Jets.

9. Atlanta Falcons (2-2) — Important stretch coming up for the Falcons with Green Bay and Detroit coming up in the next couple weeks.

10. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (3-1) — The Bucs need a win at San Francisco to carry momentum into tough stretch with Saints, Bears, Saints, Texans and Packers coming up.

11. San Diego Chargers (3-1) — Chargers should get healthy with the Broncos on Sunday and their bye week.

12. New York Giants (3-1) — G-men getting it done despite injuries. They may have gotten a break with the controversial play against the Cardinals.

13. Tennessee Titans (3-1) – Huge test for surprising Titans this week at Pittsburgh.

14. Washington Redskins (3-1) – The defense is giving up an NFC best 15.8 points per game. They have two weeks to get ready for a divisional showdown with the Eagles.

15. Pittsburgh Steelers (2-2) – Are the defending AFC champs suffering from a post-Super Bowl loss hangover? Or is it just that they cannot protect the quarterback?

16. Dallas Cowboys (2-2) – No team is more entertaining than “America’s Team”. Do the Cowboys ever play a game decided by more than one score?

17. Chicago Bears (2-2) – The Bears have a good chance to build a lead Sunday in Detroit. The question is will they be able to hold it?

18. San Francisco 49ers (3-1) – Their three wins is one more than the rest of the NFC West combined. The division is theirs to lose.

19. Oakland Raiders (2-2) – It looks like the Raiders are the team that will push San Diego in the AFC West.

20. Philadelphia Eagles (1-3) – It’s been a nightmare start for the “Dream Team”. They are probably glad to be hitting the road after the last two performances at home.

21. Cincinnati Bengals (2-2) – Got a shot to be 4-2 at the bye with two winnable games coming up. Not bad for a team who’s quarterback retired rather than play for them.

22. Cleveland Browns (2-2) – They have an extra week to recover from getting pounded by the Titans.

23. Carolina Panthers (1-3) – The good news is Cam Newton looks like he is their quarterback of the future. The bad news is New Orleans, Atlanta and Washington coming up.

24. Arizona Cardinals (1-3) – They should have beaten the Giants on Sunday. They head to Minnesota to face an angry Vikings team.

25. Jacksonville Jaguars (1-3) – The offense is experiencing some major growing pains with rookie Blaine Gabbert now playing quarterback. They average less than 10 points per game.

26. Denver Broncos (1-3) – It’s not Kyle Orton’s fault the Packers put 49 points on the board Sunday. Try telling that to the fans in Denver though.

27. Indianapolis Colts (0-4) – It’s going to be a long season without Peyton Manning. This team won’t quit though.

28. St. Louis Rams (0-4) – Injuries and the schedule have made them look worse than they really are. Unfortunately, they have Green Bay, Dallas and New Orleans for their next three.

29. Seattle Seahawks (1-3) – Put up 21 points in the second half Sunday. Only score 37 in their other 3.5 games.

30. Kansas City Chiefs (1-3) – They have played much better in the last two weeks.

31. Minnesota Vikings (0-4) – They would be ranked much higher if the NFL cut games to 30 minutes.

32. Miami Dolphins (0-4) – With a bye and the Jets coming up they could be winless when the Broncos come to town.

January 25, 2011

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Super Bowl XLV Preview: Steelers vs. Packers Matches Up Dominant Franchises

By: Anson Whaley

This year’s Super Bowl will feature two of the NFL’s most successful franchises of all time in the Pittsburgh Steelers and Green Bay Packers. Both the Steelers and Packers have not only won a significant amount of regular season and playoff games, but they’ve been to the pinnacle as well and have a history of winning the Super Bowl.

The Steelers are making their eighth trip to the Super Bowl and have won six – the most titles in the game’s history. The Packers, on the other hand, will be appearing in the franchise’s fifth Super Bowl and have won three. And if you count Green Bay’s nine previous NFL Championships before the game was officially called the Super Bowl, this game will pit the league’s two most dominant franchises in history against each other.

AFC Conference Championship Analysis

Both teams reached this game after winning close AFC and NFC championship games. The Steelers raced to a 24-0 first-half lead against the New York Jets, thanks in part to short touchdown runs by quarterback Ben Roethlisberger and running back Rashard Mendenhall, and appeared to have the game well in hand. The Jets didn’t give up, however, and a long pass play from quarterback Mark Sanchez to former Steeler Santonio Holmes brought the Jets to within two touchdowns. A safety and another Sanchez touchdown pass later, this time to receiver Jericho Cotchery, brought New York to within five points and thinking upset. But that’s as close as they’d come as the Steelers connected on two first-down plays late in the fourth quarter to run out the clock and win the game.

NFC Conference Championship Analysis

The NFC game between the Green Bay Packers and the Chicago Bears was a similar story. The Packers held a 14-0 lead late in the third quarter when the Chicago Bears made their comeback. With starting quarterback Jay Cutler banged up and backup Todd Collins ineffective, the Bears turned to little-used third-string quarterback Caleb Hanie. Hanie led an eight-play drive and marched the team down the field to the Packers 1-yard where backup running back Chester Taylor gave the Bears their first points with a rushing touchdown. After giving up a defensive touchdown on a pick-six by the Packers B.J. Raji, Hanie threw a touchdown pass to Earl Bennett to make the score 21-14. The Bears had one more shot to tie the game, marching down to the Green Bay 29-yard line, but Hanie threw his second interception of the game and the Packers came away victorious.

What to Expect from the Super Bowl

Looking ahead to the Super Bowl matchup, this has all the makings for a good game. Both quarterbacks have played some of the best football of their careers this season. Aaron Rodgers has been a legitimate Most Valuable Player candidate in passing for nearly 4,000 yards and 28 touchdowns without the benefit of a very good running game. And after a four-game suspension, Ben Roethlisberger has bounced back, throwing for more than 3,000 yards, 17 touchdowns, and only five interceptions in a short season.

The Steelers have a better running game with 1,200 yard rusher, Rashard Mendenhall while the Packers offense is a bit more lethal in the passing game. Pittsburgh may have the edge in defense and also experience, as several players on the team participated in the franchise’s two most recent Super Bowl wins. The key to the game may rely on the Packers’ ability to establish a ground game – something that is extremely difficult to do against the Steelers, one of the league’s toughest defenses against the run.

Either way, fans are in for a special game featuring the two most successful franchises in league history.

Who are you rooting for?