KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — Apparently, not even perfection is good enough for the Kansas City Chiefs.
The Seattle Seahawks took over the top spot in the AP Pro32 power rankings released Tuesday, just ahead of the second-place Chiefs — the lone undefeated team left in the NFL this season. The Denver Broncos, who lost 39-33 to Indianapolis on Sunday night, dropped from a unanimous No. 1 a week ago to third in balloting by the 12 media members who regularly cover the NFL.
"I know Kansas City is the NFL's only unbeaten team," said Alex Marvez of SiriusXM and FoxSports1, "but the Seahawks are the better squad." Former Chiefs coach Herm Edwards, now an analyst for ESPN, was even more succinct in voting the Seahawks No. 1: "The most complete team in the National Football League."
Seattle received seven first-place votes after improving to 6-1 with a 34-22 rout of the Cardinals last week. Russell Wilson threw three touchdown passes for Seattle, and a defense that many believe is the league's showed why once again.
"Seven more sacks and two interceptions for the defense, and the Seahawks keep on rolling," said Newsday's Bob Glauber, who also called Seattle the "most complete team in the league." The Chiefs earned four first-place votes after a 17-16 victory over the Texans left them 7-0 for the first time since 2003. The 31 previous teams to win their first seven games in the Super Bowl era all made the playoffs and 15 of them made it to the championship game.
"Still a question if they are indeed the best the league has to offer," wrote ESPN.com's Jeff Legwold in putting them No. 1, "but they are the only 7-0 team." That became the case when the Broncos lost for the first time in a franchise-record 17 regular-season games. Several of Denver's weaknesses were exposed by Indianapolis, including some issues with an offensive line that has been decimated by injuries.
Denver was third in the AP Pro32, but did not receive a first-place vote. "The loss to the Colts is a bump in the road for this team," said Pat Kirwan of SiriusXM NFL Radio and CBSSports.com. "It was clear that playing on the road with two backup offensive tackles makes things difficult. Look for most teams to play man-under, two-deep schemes all year and feel four-man pressure up front can get to (Peyton) Manning."
The Saints moved up one spot to fourth after the Patriots lost in overtime to the Jets, sending Tom Brady and Co. tumbling to ninth in the poll. The Colts were fifth and picked up their lone first-place vote from Kirwan after they spoiled Manning's return to town.
Indianapolis handed the Seahawks their only loss earlier this season. "They may not hold the top spot for long with Reggie Wayne gone," Kirwan said, "but Kansas City has to beat teams like that to take over the top spot."
The 49ers were sixth in the poll, followed by the Packers, Bengals, Patriots and Cowboys. The Jets leaped from 19th to 13th after their win over the Patriots. Jacksonville, a loser of 12 straight, remained last for the seventh consecutive week.
"Jaguars play the 49ers in London on Sunday," Glauber wrote, "which means they get to lose in another time zone and on another continent."