Texans still top AP Pro32 rankings; others gaining

Texans still top AP Pro32 rankings; others gaining
November 27, 2012, 6:09 pm
Share This Post

Houston Texans kicker Shayne Graham (17) is mobbed by teammates Wade Smith (74) and Owen Daniels (81) after kicking the game-winning field goal in overtime of an NFL football game against the Detroit Lions at Ford Field in Detroit, Thursday, Nov. 22, 2012. Looking on at left is Connor Barwin. The Texans won 34-31. (AP Photo/Rick Osentoski)

(APWF)

NEW YORK (AP) The New England Patriots are moving up in the AP Pro32 power rankings, thanks to another second-half-of-the-season winning streak.

While the Houston Texans remained on top for the third straight week, the Patriots jumped three places to fourth Tuesday in voting by The Associated Press' panel of 12 media members who regularly cover the league.

San Francisco and Atlanta stayed second and third, respectively.

``Pats are on fire, scoring a combined 190 points in their last four wins. Defense is getting better, too,'' said Bob Glauber of Newsday. ``Ready for another Super Bowl run?

New England (8-3) routed the New York Jets 49-19 on Thursday night for its fifth straight win. Tom Brady and the Patriots closed out the previous two regular seasons by winning their final eight games.

``Why worry about defense when you average 37 points per game?'' said Ira Kaufman of the Tampa Tribune.

The Texans (10-1) won their second overtime game in five days last week, topping Detroit 34-31 on Thursday. Houston received seven first-place votes and 370 points.

``Their defense looks more vulnerable, but Matt Schaub is on a roll,'' said Clifton Brown of The Sporting News after listing Houston sixth on his ballot.

``Two straight wins in overtime shows this team knows how to finish,'' countered Rich Gannon of CBS Sports/Sirius XM after voting the Texans first.

The 49ers, 8-2-1 after their 31-21 win at New Orleans with Colin Kaepernick at quarterback, had three-first place votes and 365 points. The Falcons, who edged Tampa Bay 24-23, had 354 points - two more then the Patriots, who received the other two first-place votes and 352 points.

``49ers have ``hot hand'' BOTH sides of the ball,'' said Chris Berman of ESPN after listing San Francisco first on his ballot.

``Harbaugh makes the move to a second year quarterback with no road experience and they just keep winning,'' added Pat Kirwan of SiriusXM NFL Radio/CBSSports.com. ``Aldon Smith looks unblockable coming off the edge.''

Denver was fifth, followed by Baltimore the New York Giants, Chicago, Indianapolis and Green Bay, which fell four spots after its 38-10 loss to the Giants.

``When they click, no team is better, as the Packers and 49ers could attest,'' Dan Pompei of the Chicago Tribune said of the Giants.

As for the surprising Colts (7-4), Clark Judge of CBSSports.com said, ``This is better than a feel-good story. This is a pretty good football team.''

Cincinnati was the biggest gainer - up six spots to 11th after another convincing win, this time 34-10 over Oakland. The Colts moved up five spots after beating Buffalo 20-13 for their highest ranking of the season after starting out 32nd and last.

The Philadelphia Eagles continued their slide, dropping three more spots to 29th after their seventh loss in a row. The Eagles opened the season ranked eighth.

Kansas City (1-10) was a near unanimous choice for 32nd and last.

``A strong showing against Peyton Manning and the Broncos gets the Chiefs out of the cellar this week,'' said John Lynch of Fox Sports.

---

Follow Richard Rosenblatt on Twitter at: http://www.twitter.com/rosenblattap

---

Online: http://pro32.ap.org/poll and http://twitter.com/AP-NFL

Texans - Team News
Alfred Blue - RB
Alfred Blue (ankle) remained limited in Thursday's practice. Arian Foster's caddie is in no danger of missing Week 9.
Oct 30 3:41PM Read More
Andre Johnson - WR
Andre Johnson (ankle) returned to Texans practice Thursday, getting in a limited session. Johnson was never in any danger of missing Sunday's game against the Eagles. With six teams on bye for Week 9, Johnson is a WR1.
Oct 30 3:40PM Read More
Arian Foster - RB
Arian Foster (knee) returned to Texans practice Thursday, getting in a limited session. The Texans are just managing their superstar back's reps. With DeMarco Murray facing the Cardinals' elite run defense, there's a case to be made for Foster as Week 9's No. 1...
Oct 30 3:39PM Read More
Alfred Blue - RB
Alfred Blue (ankle) was limited in Wednesday's practice. Blue got first-team reps with Arian Foster (knee) not practicing. The Texans also held out Andre Johnson (ankle) on Wednesday.
Oct 29 5:15PM Read More
Andre Johnson - WR
Andre Johnson (ankle) did not practice Wednesday. The Texans are limiting Johnson's reps for rest purposes. He didn't suffer any setbacks last week and should be fine for Sunday's game against the Eagles.
Oct 29 3:43PM Read More
Arian Foster - RB
Arian Foster (knee) did not practice Wednesday. It's a new injury for Foster. Coming off his three-touchdown performance, it's possible the Texans are getting him some rest. Foster will be a top-three running back in Week...
Oct 29 3:18PM Read More
Zac Diles - LB
Texans signed LB Zac Diles. CB Elbert Mack was waived in a corresponding roster move. Diles' addition is a sign the Texans aren't expecting Brian Cushing (knee) back for Week 9.
Oct 28 4:04PM Read More
Garrett Graham - TE
Garrett Graham was held without a catch in the Texans' Week 8 win over Tennessee. Graham was targeted just one time on the day, a seam shot from Ryan Fitzpatrick that predictably fell incomplete. Graham has been a very minor part of the offense, making...
Oct 26 4:53PM Read More
Andre Johnson - WR
Andre Johnson caught seven passes for 55 yards in the Texans' Week 8 win over the Titans. Johnson saw a team-high dozen targets. He was followed by Titans top CB Jason McCourty for much of the afternoon, leaving DeAndre Hopkins to work on sophomore Blidi...
Oct 26 4:44PM Read More
DeAndre Hopkins - WR
DeAndre Hopkins caught five passes for 95 yards in the Texans' Week 8 win over the Titans. Hopkins was targeted 11 times compared to 12 for Andre Johnson. Hopkins picked up chunk yards on all of his grabs, and was stopped at the five-yard line on one grab where...
Oct 26 4:24PM Read More
Alfred Blue - RB
Alfred Blue rushed for 42 yards on 14 carries in the Texans' Week 8 win over the Titans. Blue added a 22-yard catch. With the Texans clobbering the Titans late and Arian Foster having already piled up 173 yards and three touchdowns, Blue got plenty of run late...
Oct 26 4:11PM Read More
Ryan Fitzpatrick - QB
Ryan Fitzpatrick completed just 19-of-35 passes for 227 yards, one touchdown, and zero... Fitzpatrick was pretty bad for most of the day, begging to be picked off, but the Texans rode Arian Foster's legs to victory. Fitzpatrick's lone touchdown went to Foster on...
Oct 26 3:45PM Read More
Arian Foster - RB
Arian Foster rushed for 151 yards and two touchdowns on 20 carries in the Texans' 30-16, Week 8... Foster managed just 36 yards on his first 10 carries, but broke a 34-yard touchdown and had no trouble finding holes in the Tennessee defense from there on. Foster caught a...
Oct 26 3:21PM Read More
Jadeveon Clowney - LB
Jadeveon Clowney (knee) is active for Week 8 against the Titans. Clowney will play on a "pitch count," likely in pass-rushing and third-down situations. Good luck with Clowney and J.J. Watt, Zach Mettenberger. Inactive for the...
Oct 26 10:34AM Read More
Jadeveon Clowney - LB
Texans OLB Jadeveon Clowney (knee) is likely to play against the Titans, but will be on a... "I thought what he did what he had to do this week," coach Bill O’Brien said. "I think he’s got a good shot to play on Sunday." Clowney has been...
Oct 25 9:13AM Read More

More Team Talk