Chiefs take over top spot in AP Pro32 poll; Falcons are 2nd
NEW YORK (AP) Of the eight teams off to 2-0 starts this season, perhaps the most impressive has been the Kansas City Chiefs.
The Chiefs went into Foxborough and handled the New England Patriots in the NFL’s regular-season opener and followed that up with a win over the Philadelphia Eagles in their home opener.
Because of that start, Kansas City grabbed the top spot in the latest AP Pro32 poll , which was released on Tuesday, receiving eight of 12 first-place votes for 378 points in balloting by media members who regularly cover the NFL.
”Alex Smith has never looked better, Justin Houston is healthy again and creating havoc with the pass rush, and the Chiefs have made a clear statement with wins over the Patriots and Eagles that they are to be taken very seriously,” Newsday’s Bob Glauber said.
The AFC West, which has three of the 2-0 teams, also has three teams in the top six of the AP Pro32.
The Atlanta Falcons moved up three spots to No. 2, and received one first-place vote, after routing the Green Bay Packers in their NFC championship game rematch on Sunday night.
”No signs of Super (Bowl) hangover,” said Fox Sports’ John Czarnecki.
The Oakland Raiders also received a first-place vote and jumped three places to No. 3. The Raiders are just ahead of the Pittsburgh Steelers, who received the remaining two first-place votes for 343 points.
”Pittsburgh’s defense has improved markedly after a few pedestrian seasons – as the Bears are about to discover,” said Ira Kaufman of SB Nation Radio.
New England, which earned its first win with a 36-20 rout of the New Orleans Saints, slipped a spot to No. 5, but is only a point out of fourth.
”Still not at championship level, but quickly working their way back after Week 1 blowout,” The Sporting News’ Alex Marvez said of the defending champs.
The Denver Broncos jumped up eight spots to No. 6 after pounding the Dallas Cowboys 42-17.
”The Broncos’ defense was excellent as per usual in a dominant win against Dallas, but the story so far this season in Denver is how explosive the offense has been,” said Jenny Vrentas of The Monday Morning Quarterback. ”QB Trevor Siemian, in his second year as a starter, currently leads the NFL in touchdown passes.”
The Packers, who led the poll last week, dropped to No. 7 after their 34-23 loss to Atlanta. But they will get a chance to rebound when winless Cincinnati comes to Lambeau Field on Sunday.
The Baltimore Ravens, 2-0 in the AFC North along with the Steelers, moved four spots to No. 8. The Ravens open Sunday’s schedule when they take their dominating defense to London to face the Jacksonville Jaguars.
The Detroit Lions, one of three NFC teams at 2-0 after topping the New York Giants on Monday night, jumped four spots to No. 9. The Lions host the Falcons in one of the marquee matchups on Sunday.
The Cowboys plummeted seven spots to round out the top 10.
For more NFL coverage: www.pro32.ap.org and www.twitter.com/AP-NFL