Week 9 NFL Power Rankings: Browns Generally Holding After Loss

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Week 9 NFL Power Rankings: Browns See AFC North Move Up

While the Cleveland Browns have mostly held in place in Week 9 NFL power rankings following their competitive loss to the 49ers on Sunday, the rest of the AFC North division is steadily moving up this week. The division hosts some of the top defenses in the NFL and presently, one of the best quarterbacks in the NFL. Below, a look at what the division is doing this week in power rankings:

Pittsburgh Steelers

The Steelers just beat the New England Patriots and Ben Roethlisberger looks as good as any quarterback in football. They're moving up every major power ranking, including SB Nation, ESPN, FOX Sports and CBS Sports. They're as high as number two, their spot in Brian Billick's FOX Sports power rankings.

Baltimore Ravens

They dropped a couple spots a week ago after losing to the Jacksonville Jaguars, but showing a spark offensively to come back against the Arizona Cardinals in a trap game on Sunday has been enough to move them back up, mostly into the top five. They're at No. 4 in ESPN's power rankings, but are number six in SB Nation's.

Cincinnati Bengals

The Bengals are rising on most power rankings, and are as nine on some power rankings - SB Nation is the only one to include them in the top ten. Oddly enough, FOX Sports and Brian Billick dropped the Bengals a point, down to number 16, the lowest where you can find them in the major rankings.

FOX Sports | ESPN | SB Nation | CBS Sports

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Week 9 NFL Power Rankings: FOX Sports Drops Browns Two Spots

Perhaps we spoke too soon. As the Cleveland Browns have been holding in most Week 9 NFL power rankings following a competitive loss to the highly-ranked 49ers, one major ranking has decided to drop them. It's just kind of odd, because they have looked decent this year and lost to a better team, should they really move down?

FOX Sports seems to think so:

25. The Browns stayed competitive against the much better 49ers on Sunday, but they have multiple issues on the offensive and defensive sides of the ball. The Browns had an identity last year with their power rushing attack, but we haven't seen that all season and QB Colt McCoy doesn't have the skill-set to win on his arm alone    

That's down a whole two spots from last week, which again, is puzzling. Still, Brian Billick makes a good point when he notes that the team lacks an identity, and that seems as good a reason as any to move a team down in power rankings. The Browns can't seem to figure out what they want to be offensively, and it's making their strong defense look worse and worse, as it happens.

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Week 9 NFL Power Rankings: ESPN Holds Browns At 24

A loss doesn't always necessarily mean a team has to fall in the power rankings, as evidenced by the Cleveland Browns following their loss to the San Francisco 49ers. Generally speaking, a loss will drop a team, but not when that team is appearing as high as number two on some power rankings around the 'net. The Browns weren't able to beat the 49ers and that's understandable, so instead of dropping, they're holding.

ESPN concurs, leaving them in their 24 spot:

24. Coach/offensive coordinator Pat Shurmur has made little impact on Cleveland's 25th-ranked offense. (Walker)    

That offense has been pretty bad, but again, the 49ers have one of the top ranked defenses in the National Football League, so the struggling Cleveland offense had essentially no chance when it all came down to it. The Browns are low, but in all honesty, they're probably better than that ranking, as it stands. We'll see where they end up in other rankings.

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Week 9 NFL Power Rankings: Browns Hold Pat At No. 23

The Cleveland Browns rank No. 23 in SB Nation's latest power rankings. They didn't move an inch from last week, coming off their loss to the 49ers.

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