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New England Patriots new challengers for No.1

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Cleveland is still the leader in the clubhouse right now


 

There are a number of big-time teams who have started slowly out of the gate with a 1-2 mark; teams you might not expect to be on a list of below .500 teams. The Pittsburgh Steelers, Green Bay Packers, Detroit Lions and Kansas City Chiefs are among the 1-2 teams, but they remain outside of the bottom six.

Who did make the list? You're about ready to find out. Well, if you haven't already skipped ahead.

And without further ado ...

Dropped out: Kansas City Chiefs, Oakland Raiders, Tennessee Titans, Jacksonville Jaguars

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NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS

The Patriots are below .500 for seemingly the first time since former QB Steve Grogan wore a neck brace. But the Patriots get the nod above the Steelers and Packers because of their arrogance. The Patriots would rather prove a point with Wes Welker, by keeping him on the bench for long stretches instead of winning.

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WASHINGTON REDSKINS

As amazing as Robert Griffin III is, imagine how awesome he would be going against the Redskins' defense? The defense is what is going to keep the Redskins in the race for No. 1, even though RG3 is going out of his way to make the team respectable.

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ST. LOUIS FC

St. Louis has actually looked pretty good on defense, which was turning the corner last year. The new additions of Courtland Finnegan and Janoris Jenkins have been huge. But the offense is keeping this team in the race. It's almost like you could have a real team if you combined the Redskins offense with the St. Louis defense. Dang, it's a shame St. Louis didn't have a chance at RG3 last year. Oh, wait.

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NEW ORLEANS SAINTS

The 2012 coach of the year Sean Payton (he's already won the award) should take down the "Do your job" poster hanging up in the team facility, and go with some other motivation posters. Perhaps a photo of Payton hanging from a tree branch with the guise, "Hang in there baby."

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MIAMI DOLPHINS

Joe Philbin looked like he was out of his depth on "Hard Knocks" when he went through and awkward, public breakup with Chad Johnson. Well, his imagine somehow became worse after he iced his own defense against the Jets on Sunday. Seriously Philbin, Rex Ryan was laughing at you.

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CLEVELAND BROWNS

The Browns just can't seem to catch a break. The Browns have a tough defense to lean on, and then Joe Haden gets suspended. But here is a minor prediction for the Browns this year, look at the way the Cardinals closed the 2011 season. The Browns could do something similar with this defense. They just need a little help from the offense.

Got a comment or a question? Don't waste your brilliant, biting flame in the comment section, hit Rank up via Twitter or via Facebook Also be sure to catch the latest on the Dave Dameshek Football Program.

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