A weekly examination of the Buccaneers' ESPN.com Power Ranking:
Preseason: 19 | Last week: 31 | ESPN.com Power Ranking since 2002
The latest ESPN.com Power Rankings are out and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers finally are getting some respect. That’s mostly because the Bucs finally have done something to earn respect.
They’ve won two consecutive games after starting the season 0-8. That’s created some cushion between the Bucs and the Jaguars, who have been holding down the No. 32 spot.
The Bucs have moved up to 28th after winning Sunday against Atlanta. In addition to the Jaguars, the Bucs now are ranked ahead of the Vikings, Falcons and Texans.
I think this ranking is pretty accurate. But I also think, given the way the Bucs have played lately, there’s not a lot of difference between them and the Redskins, Raiders and Bills -- the three teams ranked directly in front of Tampa Bay.
If the Bucs can win Sunday at Detroit, they’ll have a good chance to jump into the middle 20s.