With a month to go until the start of the 2022 regular season, Dan Hanzus of NFL.com went about updating his power rankings just in time for the first week of preseason exhibitions.
Teams like the Bills, Rams, and Buccaneers still top the list (in that order) as they did in Hanzus’ last edition of the rankings while there are only a few minor changes to the top 10. Those included the 49ers and Bengals swapping places in the fourth and fifth spots and the Ravens managed to poke into the top 10 by bumping the Raiders out of it.
As for the Chargers, they remained where they were before at ninth, still behind both the Chiefs (seventh) and the Broncos (eighth).
That’s still a bit blasphemous for me, but let’s take a look at what Hanzus had to say about their ranking:
“Looking for a sleeper pick at tight end in your upcoming fantasy draft? You could do worse than Donald Parham, the 6-foot-8 giant currently flashing tantalizing red-zone chemistry with Justin Herbert at Chargers training camp. Parham missed the end of last season after sustaining a scary concussion on Thursday Night Football against the Chiefs, but the now-healthy fourth-year pro has loads of potential and an elite quarterback to help take his game to another level. OK, this is where I remind you the Bolts also signed solid veteran TE Gerald Everett this offseason, so you can’t get mad at me if Parham is M.I.A. by Week 5.”
Hmm. So not much really being said there outside of his potential excitement for Parham to come into his own as a potential sleeper pick in fantasy football. It would have been nice for him to do more defending of his rankings but I guess we’ll have to nit-pick them anyways.
The Chargers being picked as the third-best team in the division here is, and will continue to be, a joke after the offseason they have had. They just string some “sneaky good moves” together which led to some hype based on potential alone. The Chargers actually went out and spent a lot of money to bring in some of the best players in the entire NFL. The move to sign J.C. Jackson is nowhere near the same as the Casey Hayward signing where the team wasn’t entirely sure how well he’d pan out. They literally hand-picked the guy with 17 interceptions over the last two seasons.
Same with the trade for Mack. Say what you want about how he may have lost a step, the guy is one of the most-decorated pass rushers of the past decade and was named an All-Pro at two positions in one single season. He’s the real deal, as well.
So for the Chargers to continue to be ranked behind the Broncos, whom have already lost one of their starting wide receivers for the season, is ridiculous.
And while it has nothing to do with the AFC West, the 49ers being ranked as the fourth-best team in the NFL is also wild to me. Trey Lance is entering his first season as a starter in the NFL and they believe the talent around him is simply so spectacular that he cannot possibly fail.
So what does Justin Herbert have around him? I didn’t realize this team was chopped liver in comparison.