A few weeks ago, the thought of this weekly article having any significance for us over the long haul was a difficult prospect for some. You will of course recall starting 0-3 and having the media outlets we follow burying us at or near the bottom of the scrap heap.
Fast forward to today as we approach Week 8 (can't believe it's already Week 8) and the Chiefs are starting to receive a word that many place a premium on around these parts: respect. Some will say it is overrated and at times I would agree. But for this bunch of Chiefs and the adversity they have fought through to get to 3-3, with the division lead on the line Monday night, getting some respect does feel pretty darn good. Today we will save our weekly poll for the end of the article, so let's get right to finding out where the Chiefs stand in the eyes of the media.
Coming off the bye week, the Chiefs invaded Oakland and came away with a 28-0 victory over their division rivals. Meanwhile, San Diego lost what seemed to be a comfortable lead and fell to the Jets, while the New Testament Broncos fought through hellfire and brimstone to secure a victory over the always pesky and winless Miami Dolphins. Let's see where everyone stands this week. I'll say this: it's pretty interesting.
CBS Sports: The ever-generous Pete Prisco of CBS Sports really valued the road victory over a divisional opponent this week. And when I say really valued, I say it in the same way I would say Kyle Boller had a really good game Sunday. Pete saw fit to move us up just one spot to #24 this week, just behind the Cleveland Browns and the 2-5 Carolina Panthers. The Chargers slipped six spots to #10 after their loss, and the Raiders also dropped six places to #15. The Tebows were able to ascend two spots to #27 after their victory. I think the Denver ranking is fair, but truth be told I do feel like Kyle Orton and the Old Testament Broncos would have had little trouble with the Dolphins. Just my opinion. I'm just a crazy heretic.
Football Outsiders: We welcome back the Football Outsiders after their one week hiatus from us. This week the Outsiders have us at #23. That ranking is good enough to be one spot ahead of the good old San Diego Chargers who are at 24th and three spots ahead of the Denver Broncos who are at 26th. Who is on top of the division? Well obviously the only team left, the Raiders, who come in at 18th. Overall, not a tremendous showing for the AFC West. The silver lining? The Outsiders have the Chiefs defense rated the best in the division and we have the 10th best Special Teams unit in the league according to them. Since their rankings carry zero human bias, it's nice to see some positive numbers there.
FOX Sports with Brian Billick: Finally, after what seems like an eternity, Brian Billick did not issue the lowest human ranking for the Chiefs. He actually moved the Chiefs up four spots to #22! He also said, "Boy was I wrong about these guys. I apologize for doubting them at all!". Great right? Ok, he didn't say that. But he was semi-complimentary: "Give KC credit for keeping it together after a tough start. Sometimes going through what they did early in the season has the bonding effect that will make this team worth watching. After three wins against teams with a combined five wins, Monday night against the Chargers will be the key". It is the truth, but I guess mentioning that one of them has four of those wins and we shut them out at home was too much for BB. Billick is certainly enamored with the Chargers whom he ranked at 7th. I mean there is no way on God's green earth that San Diego is the 7th best team right now, I just want to be clear. He dropped the Raiders four spots to 19th and moved the Broncos up two spots after their crusade against the Dolphins to 25th. I suspect if we beat the Chargers next week, they will move up and we will stay put somehow.
SB Nation: SB Nation and Joel Thorman, he of exclusive on-record Pioli interviews fame, were impressed with the Chiefs effort and moved the Chiefs up two spots to number 21. Regarding the Chiefs Thorman wrote, "Quietly, the Chiefs have moved on from their 89-10 combined loss in the first two games and come back to win three in a row. Believe it or not, KC can get a share of the AFC West lead by beating San Diego on Halloween night." Let me digress for a second: Is there going to be a better place to watch any sporting event in the United States during the next seven days than Arrowhead on Halloween? No. Zero. We are the sporting Mecca for the upcoming week. Baseball? Sure, if you like the road team winning the Series on the home team's field. For one week, Arrowhead is the place to be and it will be insane. Apparently Joel decided to rank the other teams as well, and he and I agree to disagree on the Chargers. He also has them at 7th but perhaps this is a ploy for when we beat them, thus our strength of victory will be higher. Who knows? The Raiders nosedive from 12 to 17th and the Broncos move up two spots to 25th. Not bad Thorman. Not bad.
ESPN: ESPN used to kind of have a crush on the Chiefs, but after our slow start they have been slow to forgive us. They too have us at 21st this week. They had this profound nugget to say regarding the Chiefs, "The Chiefs have done an impressive job of getting back to .500 after an 0-3 start." Was that seriously the best they could come up with? Once again, it is true, and they could have Billicked us, but come on. Watch, see if this is interesting: "The Packers have looked impressive and have done a nice job starting out 7-0" I don't know ESPN. Wow me. Show me you are into this. Anyways, they have the Chargers 9th and make a note that the only two good teams they played they lost to. The Raiders gave up six
interceptions spots and moved to 15th, while the Broncos did not move and stayed at 27th.
National Football Post: I'm getting to the point where people stop reading so I will speed things up a bit. NFP has the Chiefs up three spots to #20 this week. I like it. The Chargers dropped five spots to 9th, while the Raiders dropped six spots to #16. Meanwhile, the Broncos moved up two spots to 25th after their win. God help us (no pun intended) if Tebow brings the Broncos to the mountaintop against the Lions.
Pro Football Talk: PFT was very much anti-Chief early on as well. Their snarky remarks and their jabs at players and coaches were not necessarily correct or fair, but the truth is we stunk early on. With that said, they are believers now and have the Chiefs at #20 this week. They even chimed in with this, "A day that saw the AFC West become wide open could see it turned upside down if the Chiefs can beat the Chargers on Monday night." Not too shabby if you ask me. Regarding the 10th ranked Chargers, I can't tell if I think this is funny yet, "Maybe the Chargers thought the two-minute drill was actually a drill." I don't know. I have seen better. Somehow the Raiders fell only to 11th this week and by somehow I mean I am not entirely sure how at all. Bringing up the rear, the Donkeys moved up one spot to 26th.
Walter Football: Anyone who says Walter does not like the Chiefs is crazy. That may have been true in the past, but since the Thormans sent over that check and official Chiefs memorabilia, he has been nothing but a sweetheart. Gotta love Wally who again shows the Chiefs love and ranks them at their highest weekly rank of 19th this week. This is also why I like his rankings: he has the Chargers down to 11th, the Raiders at 21st, and the Broncos right behind at 22nd. Walter Football: where real Americans get their football rankings (after they have visited sbnation.com).
Well folks, another exciting week of football down, and one heck of a week to go. I hope you took the time to read as I'm sure it took a lot less time than it took me to compile! As a final parting shot for today, I will be flying in to KC on Sunday and will be sacrificing some things I was going to put some money towards to see this big game. Shoot me an email, toss me a message in the comments, whatever. If you are going to be there and tailgating, I will find my way over to you and say what's up. For now though, thanks for reading another fun-filled edition of the NFL Power Rankings: Media Edition.