Power Rankings: AFC East cemented

The Pittsburgh Steelers escaped Sun Life Stadium with a victory they might not have deserved, but that wasn't enough to knock them out of the top slot in ESPN.com's latest Power Rankings.

Had the Miami Dolphins held on to win, the Power Rankings would be dominated by AFC East clubs.

The New York Jets would've climbed to the peak. The New England Patriots would've been listed second, and the Miami Dolphins would've shot upward.

Instead, no AFC East club changed from last week. The Buffalo Bills remained at the bottom despite signs of life.

ESPN.com's government-appointed Power Rankings panel is senior writer John Clayton, AFC South blogger Paul Kuharsky, AFC North blogger James Walker and NFC West blogger Mike Sando.

2. New York Jets

Previous rank: 2

My take: The Jets are coming off their bye week, and with a victory over the No. 3 Patriots, there was no reason to alter the Jets' position.

3. New England Patriots

Previous rank: 3

My take: The Patriots continue to get it done. Granted, they got a few bounces Sunday against the reeling San Diego Chargers. A couple bizarre turnovers and a kick off the upright helped immensely. But it's never easy to travel across the country and win. They'll catch another break Sunday if haggard Brett Favre can't play for the Minnesota Vikings.

16. Miami Dolphins

Previous rank: 16

My take: The Dolphins are better than middling, but as one of their architects famously intoned, you are what your record says you are. That's 3-3 and winless at home regardless of any officiating beef. The Dolphins have put together some strong performances, but they can't seem to generate any momentum.

32. Buffalo Bills

Previous rank: 32

My take: The Bills' staggering offensive display against the No. 4 Baltimore Ravens didn't budge the panel. The Bills still were slotted last on every ballot. Did the Bills merely come up for air with two weeks to prepare for the Ravens, who already were writing off the Bills seven days before the game? Or did we see a legitimate breakthrough? I'm leaning toward the former, but we'll find out more Sunday, when the Bills visit the No. 12 Kansas City Chiefs.