Ravens and rankings
Since everybody seems to be obsessed with the polls right now, I thought I'd take a look across the spectrum of NFL Power Rankings compiled by the various national media entities that cover pro football to see how the Ravens stack up against the rest of the league. Here's a sampling.
ESPN.com: The Ravens have moved from 20th last week to 14th this week. The 43-yard hookup between Troy Smith and Joe Flacco apparently sold the Worldwide Leader on Flacco's all-around athleticism.
NBCSports.com: The Peacock is pretty bullish on the Ravens, ranking them 13th -- all the way up from 21st last week.
CBSSports.com: Smaller jump, from 19 to 17, based on two straight victories and the continued great performance of the defense.
FoxSports.com: Up one slot to 20th. The Fox poll lists the range of rankings for the Ravens this year. They've been as high as 15th and as low as 29th.
Yahoo.com: Ravens are 19th, with little explanation other than another reference to Smith and Flacco playing catch at the Raiders' expense.
Sporting News: John Harbaugh's solid performance in his first year as a head coach is cited next to a No. 17 ranking.
USA Today: The McPaper has moved the Ravens up from 20th to 18th, pointing out that they have moved back to within one game of the Steelers in the AFC North standings.
The undefeated Tennessee Titans were a unanimous choice as the No. 1 team with the New York Giants ranked second in all of the above polls. The Redskins generally ranked in the top five.
In honor of CNN's "Poll of Polls," I've averaged the Ravens' seven rankings and come up with an average of 16.8. And, of course, there is no statistical margin of error.