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NFL Power Rankings: Bengals hanging on in the top-ten

Taking a look at the power rankings around the mainstream media after week nine.

Robert Mayer-USA TODAY Sports

My weekly rants about the SB Nation power rankings can take a backseat this time. No. 10 ranking is fair and the comments are solid, except for Andy Dalton's interceptions (though assigned to him, it's unfair to blame ALL of them on him).

A last-second road loss isn't the end of the world, but the loss of all-Milky Way Galaxy DT Geno Atkins on the heels of Leon Hall's Achilles tear could mean the end of the Bengals as an elite defense. They'll still be good enough to win the North if the Red Rifle doesn't trot out many more three-pick performances, but their status as a true contender depended on overwhelming defense. Oh, well -- if they get enough touches for Gio Bernard, maybe he can make up the difference single-handedly.

ESPN ranks the Bengals eighth:

Thursday's sloppy loss was a step back. Bengals receivers dropped five of Andy Dalton's throws. That's Cincinnati's most in a game since Week 11 of the 2007 season.

The list.

SB Nation 10 8 6
ESPN 8 7 7 (Prisco) 8 6 6
Fox Sports (Billick) 11 7 8 8 7 7
Pro Football Talk 8 8 8