AP Pro32 ballot from Marvez
Ballot and comments from AP Pro 32 panel voter Alex Marvez of Foxsports.com:
ALEX MARVEZ (Foxsports.com)
2. Atlanta Falcons -- Issue the arrest warrant for Falcons general manager Thomas Dimitroff. Acquiring cornerback Asante Samuel (17 passes defensed, four interceptions) from Philadelphia for a seventh-round draft pick during the offseason was a steal.
3. Seattle Seahawks -- Is this really the same powerhouse that lost to four teams (Arizona, St. Louis, Detroit and Miami) that have a combined record of 23-36-1?
4. New England Patriots -- If there's any solace from an unimpressive 23-17 win at Jacksonville, the Patriots also seemed disinterested in their final two regular-season games last year before reaching Super Bowl XLVI.
5. San Francisco 49ers -- More disturbing than the blowout loss to Seattle were injuries suffered by wide receiver Mario Manningham (knee) and tight end Vernon Davis (concussion) heading into the playoffs.
6. Green Bay Packers -- A 55-7 rout of Tennessee was impressive, but think just how good the Packers could be when wide receiver Jordy Nelson (hamstring) and strong safety Charles Woodson (collarbone) are back for the playoffs.
7. Houston Texans -- Houston, we have a problem. Being dominated at home even by a solid team (Minnesota) isn't a good look for a Super Bowl contender.
8. Washington Redskins -- Lost amid the RG3 hoopla is the opportunistic play of Washington's defense (12 forced turnovers) during a six-game winning streak.
9. Baltimore Ravens -- While there is still the possibility of landing the conference's No. 3 seed, the Ravens now have the luxury of giving their starters a rest Sunday at Cincinnati with the AFC North title and first-round home game secured.
10. Indianapolis Colts -- Advice to fans attending Sunday's home game against Houston: Bring earplugs and tissues. You'll need both when Colts head coach Chuck Pagano makes his return to the sideline.
11. Cincinnati Bengals -- The Bengals have 92 sacks and counting in 2011 and 2012. The previous four seasons combined? 100.
12. Minnesota Vikings -- A strong defensive effort in last Sunday's 23-6 win at Houston was a reminder that the Vikings are more than a one-man team.
13. Chicago Bears -- It must sting that the Bears need help Sunday from their archrival (Green Bay) to make the playoffs.
14. Dallas Cowboys -- No NFL franchise says average like the Cowboys. Including the playoffs, Dallas is now 41-40 since Week 17 of the 2007 season following last Sunday's loss to New Orleans.
15. New York Giants -- Head coach Tom Coughlin wasn't kidding when saying his team has "flat-lined." New York enters Week 17 with its playoff hopes on life support following last Sunday's 33-14 loss at Baltimore.
16. St. Louis Rams -- The Rams (7-7-1) are out of the playoff race, but there is something to play for Sunday in Seattle -- the franchise's first winning season since 2003.
18. Pittsburgh Steelers -- Expect significant roster changes next year because of player age and salary-cap restraints. That should make for an emotional season-finale against visiting Cleveland.
19. New Orleans Saints -- The Saints have more points (423) than eight of the 10 teams that have clinched playoff spots, but will be sitting home in January.
20. Carolina Panthers -- Although nothing can change the disappointment of failing to reach the playoffs, the Panthers can take pride in winning four of their past five games rather than giving up on the season.
21. Tampa Bay Buccaneers -- This pirate ship is sinking with five straight losses.
23. New York Jets -- Ringling Brothers has nothing on the Jets.
24. Cleveland Browns -- Could head coach Pat Shurmur have led Cleveland to the playoffs in 2013? It's looking like we'll never know.
25. Buffalo Bills -- Let's pile some more dirt on the hapless Bills (5-10). None of the five victories came against teams with a winning record and four opponents are slated to pick in the top 10.
28. Tennessee Titans -- Having surrendered 451 points, the Titans are 10 away from allowing the highest single-season total in the franchise's 53-year history.
30. Philadelphia Eagles -- With all the injuries that have helped derail Philadelphia's season, it's fitting that rookie quarterback Nick Foles (broken hand) will miss Sunday's game against the New York Giants.
31. Jacksonville Jaguars -- And with the No. 2 pick in the 2013 draft ...
32. Kansas City Chiefs -- And with the No. 1 pick in the 2013 draft ...
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Copyright 2012 by The Associated Press
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