Brandt's 60-second previews

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Aug 24, 2005

By Gil Brandt Senior Analyst

(June 30, 2006) -- As we have in past years, we are giving you a 60-second preview on each team as the players make their final preparations for training camp.

Unlike past years, I have decided to rank the teams 1-32.

Let's make it clear that these ranking are based upon the assumption that all key veterans will start the season healthy (even Ben Roethlisberger, Carson Palmer and Daunte Culpepper) and that all rookies will be signed on time (unlike Chicago's Cedric Benson last year).

But like everything else this time of year, this is a product of uncertainty. Five teams in the NFC that had losing records in 2004 made the playoffs in 2005, including division winners Tampa Bay, New York and Chicago. And needless to say, the Colts will drop if Peyton Manning gets hurt during training camp, as will the Saints if Reggie Bush holds out.

We took into consideration each team's performance from last season, who they lost and who they gained.

In September, we'll take another look at each team and factor in how they played during the preseason.

18. San Diego

A new quarterback, Philip Rivers, holds the key. He has thrown just 30 passes in two years as a pro. LaDainian Tomlinson is an outstanding running back who was injured in 2005 and didn't play up to his 2004 form. On defense, the Chargers were ranked No. 1 against the run and sacked the opposing quarterback 46 times. But the team only had 20 takeaways and finished minus-8 in that department. After five games in the Eastern Time Zone last year, San Diego has just three this year. If Rivers plays well, this can be a playoff team.


Well-Known Member
Sep 1, 2005
While I don't necessarily agree with the ranking (18th?), seeing as how we are set up better than some of the teams ranked ahead of us, his analysis is pretty well spot on.