With rookies entrenched in offseason workouts and the majority of free-agent movement and trades finalized, it's time to recalibrate how teams stack up one through 32 -- in June.
No team has ever made a Super Bowl in its home stadium, and I'm not saying Dallas will, but the Cowboys have the roster to make them the team to beat heading into 2010. However, their schedule is rugged, and they might not get through their docket medically upright or in playoff contention. The Jets look incredible on paper, but it's tough to get too infatuated knowing that a quarterback's second season is often his most difficult, so Mark Sanchez will have to overcome that. Plus, the new players might not be as good as the ones they replaced.
The more I examined teams, their schedules and the like, there's a team in Southern California that is teed up for a big season, and one in crab country not far behind.
We asked for your rankings, and you have spoken with more than 100,000 ballots cast. Where did your favorite team land?
Pat Kirwan's rankings
1. Chargers -- The Bolts run game improves with rookie Ryan Mathews, and they play just two playoff teams in the first 10 games.
2. Ravens -- WR Anquan Boldin plus RB Ray Rice plus QB Joe Flacco makes this offense as fearsome as the defense.
3. Cowboys -- This team boasts enviable depth. If it can survive its early schedule -- including a highly anticipated rematch with Minnesota in Week 6 -- watch out.
4. Colts -- The beefed up offensive line should help, and the returns of WR Anthony Gonzalez and S Bob Sanders add more firepower on both sides.
5. Packers -- A second season playing the 3-4 defense and a better offensive line with the addition of rookie tackle Bryan Bulaga make this the team to beat in the NFC North.
6. Bengals -- The defense might be the most physical in the AFC. Carson Palmer needs to regain his form. He has more wide receiver (Antonio Bryant) and tight end (Jermaine Gresham) threats.
7. Falcons -- CB Dunta Robinson and rookie LB Sean Weatherspoon change the tenor of the defense. RB Michael Turner is already in shape to return to form.
8. Saints -- Like Indy's Peyton Manning, N'awlins' Drew Brees will have the Saints in the thick of things. The O-line is really good and DE Alex Brown should improve the defensive front.
9. Vikings -- Even if Brett Favre is back, there's no telling if he'll be as money as last season. Minny has to be better in all areas, especially in the secondary.
10. Jets -- Something about all their high-profile moves seems like there's a trap door ready to sink the ship, but Rex Ryan can coach with the best of them, giving N.Y. an edge in the AFC East.
11. Patriots -- The Pats could start slow, but by the end of the season when Wes Welker is back and some of the young players have their footing, New England could be fearsome.
12. Texans -- Losing LB Brian Cushing for four games hurts. Adding CB Kareem Jackson and RB Ben Tate helps. Matt Schaub needs to take the next step, and Houston needs to win in the division.
13. 49ers -- QB Alex Smith doesn't have to do anything great. He just can't make mistakes. If he keeps improving, San Francisco should win the NFC West.
14. Titans -- The youth movement should benefit the Titans. Some common ground needs to be found with RB Chris Johnson, otherwise his contract demands could be a distraction.
15. Giants -- Defensively New York should be better, but there aren't any assurances of that. The running game and the offensive line play could determine if this is a playoff team.
16. Dolphins -- Defensive coordinator Mike Nolan will have the defense better and unpredictable. WR Brandon Marshall will change the dynamic of the offense. QB Chad Henne is the key.
17. Eagles -- The switch to QB Kevin Kolb and the overall youth push could help chemistry but cause the team to take a step back. Not a radical one. Philly should get better as the season progresses.
18. Cardinals -- The offensive identity will turn more to the ground game to ease the pressure off Matt Leinart. Ken Whisenhunt is an excellent coach, but this transition could stall things.
19. Steelers -- S Troy Polamalu's return will re-ignite the defense, but the Big Ben/QB situation could disrupt the offense -- and team chemistry. They may miss the playoffs for the second straight year.
20. Seahawks -- Coach Pete Carroll has re-energized the troops and QB Matt Hasselbeck is really dialed in, but there are still a lot of holes that need to be plugged.
21. Raiders -- Oakland could emerge as a playoff team, but that's if QB Jason Campbell shows that he's that type of quarterback. He's an upgrade from JaMarcus Russell, but he's still a question mark.
22. Buccaneers -- Tampa Bay could be this season's sleeper team -- if the rookies all step up. That's asking a lot. They should be a lot better, especially on offense, but not quite yet.
23. Jaguars -- Another possible sleeper. The young O-line should be better as should the offense as a whole, but the defense still is unsettled. Not good in a division where offense is king.
24. Broncos -- Forget the Tim Tebow hysteria, Denver has to fix its defense and hope that OT Ryan Clady rebounds from a knee injury. QB play, of course, is an issue.
25. Redskins -- Donovan McNabb should make the offense better, but the line is still unsettled. The change to a 3-4 defense disrupts a solid unit that doesn't have all the parts for the switch.
26. Chiefs -- A unified coaching staff and better players should help, but a lot depends on QB Matt Cassel. Rookie S Eric Berry could be a difference-maker.
27. Bears -- Jay Cutler will be much better, but will the running game and offensive line improve too? It also hurts to have defensive uncertainties in this division.
28. Lions -- A solid draft class in '09 and the potential of the '10 class, as well as some nice free-agent additions should help. They're still far away overall.
29. Browns -- Cleveland seems to have made upgrades, but you can't win if you don't have a quarterback, which they don't.
30. Panthers -- There is bad karma in Carolina. There is still talent and a lot of gritty players, but a lame duck coach and underlying morale issues could undermine this season.
31. Rams -- First overall pick Sam Bradford is going to take some lumps, but he'll also make some plays. St. Louis still lacks too much talent.
32. Bills -- RB C.J. Spiller was a nice draft choice, and he could be a bright spot if he ever gets room to run. New coach Chan Gailey will have to work miracles to make something of this offense.