The Browns are beginning to get some respect, even from the talking heads over at the 4-letter network. ESPN's power rankings were released, and despite losing to the New York Jets in OT last Sunday the Browns actually moved up a spot from #23 to #22. Even better was the comment that went along with it:
Playoff contenders want to avoid Cleveland in the second half of the season.
So true, indeed. The Steelers and Ravens will have to face the Browns in the 2nd half of the season, with both coming to Cleveland in the coming weeks.
As for the top of the rankings, for the first time all season the Atlanta Falcons are #1. Atlanta came back in the final minute to beat the Baltimore Ravens last Thursday night and are one of three 7-2 teams heading into Week 11. The Patriots jumped 4 spots to come in at #2 with the Jets, Ravens and Steelers rounding out the Top-5.
That means the Browns have played all 5 of the top teams in the NFL Power Rankings, and with the Saints at #9, they've faced six of the Top-10. They'll get a bit of a reprieve this week with a trip to Jacksonvill to face the 18th ranked Jaguars.