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Ira Kaufman's AP Pro32 ballot for Dec. 18

Published:   |   Updated: March 13, 2013 at 06:29 PM

This season, The Associated Press launched a weekly poll focused on NFL teams. Called AP Pro32, the AP ranks each of the NFL's 32 teams based on balloting from a panel of national media members who cover the league and its teams. The poll is similar to the AP Top 25, the 75-year-old poll that ranks the nation's top college football teams. The Tampa Tribune's Ira Kaufman is among the voters. Here is his ballot for this week.

1. Denver: Don't forget about a defense that has yielded the fewest points in the AFC.

2. San Francisco: For one half on a rainy night in Foxborough, they looked Super Bowl-bound.

3. Atlanta: That one was for all the doubters out there. Any left?

4. New England: If Tom Brady went against his own DBs every week, he'd throw for 6,000 yards.

5. Houston: You'd better know where J.J. Watt lines up on every snap.

6. Seattle: Pete Carroll's marauding crew certainly has the attention of the 49ers.

7. Green Bay: Two more wins could give them a first-round playoff bye.

8. Washington: A five-week roll has the Redskins primed for an NFC East title.

9. Dallas: Jerry Jones hasn't been this excited since the NFL's new TV contracts were signed.

10. N.Y. Giants: It's gut-check time for the defending Super Bowl champs.

11. Baltimore: That cloak of invincibility at home has been ripped apart this month.

12. Indianapolis: A win at Arrowhead will make it official … they're in.

13. Minnesota: Adrian Peterson is carrying an entire organization on his shoulder pads.

14. Cincinnati: They can clinch at least an AFC wild-card spot with a win at Heinz Field.

15. Chicago: Peaking in October is no recipe for success in the NFL.

16. Pittsburgh: The bumbling Steelers would be eliminated with a loss against Cincinnati.

17. New Orleans: The Saints took out a season's worth of frustration on the reeling Bucs.

18. St. Louis: They've made strides under Jeff Fisher, but they need more firepower.

19. Miami: They'll look back and realize they've wasted some good defense in 2012.

20. Tampa Bay: A late-season slide threatens to overshadow real progress.

21. New York Jets: Mark Sanchez's favorite song by the Rolling Stones? "Shattered."

22. Carolina: Might be too little, too late to save Ron Rivera's job.

23. Cleveland: Competitive vs. the AFC but finished 0-4 against the powerful NFC East.

24. San Diego: There will be a new head coach and GM to turn this ship around.

25. Arizona: A solid defense was finally rewarded for all that hard work.

26. Tennessee: Chris Johnson still has it. Now find him some help.

27. Detroit: Jim Schwartz said the blame belongs to him. Save some for Ndamukong Suh.

28. Buffalo: The playoff drought goes on … and on.

29. Philadelphia: The nightmare is almost over for this would-be Dream Team.

30. Oakland: Let's not get too excited about beating up on the Chiefs.

31. Jacksonville: Give Justin Blackmon a real QB and watch those numbers soar.

32. Kansas City: The last time they won a playoff game, Joe Montana was under center.

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