The first version of the 2011 SB Nation Power Rankings favored the Cincinnati Bengals, largely because SB Nation was one of the very few power rankings to list Cincinnati higher than dead-last. I guess I have some pull with this company, eh?
Now that the Bengals are only one of 16 NFL teams that are currently tied for first place, with a one-game lead with a team like the Pittsburgh Steelers, we expect trends to shift a little with a little more appreciation about what this team is all about. No. I'm not sucked in completely by Cincinnati's win, declaring 16 wins and 531 touchdown receptions between Andy Dalton and Bruce Gradkowski. But cautious optimism? I can stand behind that.
On Tuesday SB Nation released their (or is ours?) week two power rankings, giving Cincinnati a little breathing room from dead-last. Improving four spots to No. 27, the Bengals jumped Denver, Minnesota, Cleveland and Indianapolis. Not a bad first week indeed.
Now we're just waiting for AFC North blogger James Walker to declare his love for the Cincinnati Bengals by ranking them 33rd and saying that he knew the team was actually half-way decent.