via cdn1.sbnation.com (graphic by Indy Lori)
Average Ranking to date: 2nd
Fox Sports ranks us 2nd: Speaking of perfect teams thus far, the Saints' mirror-images in Indy have silently won their last 16 regular-season games dating back to last season. Of course, this year's competition has been right up there with the Big 10's non-conference schedule — the 4-3 Cardinals are the only winning team to face Peyton Manning.
Associated Content ranks us 1st (?): They are sooo screwed up they did their rankings Sunday. There is an addendum here which includes some rant about Peyton not being a good choice for MVP and the Colts playing crappy teams. They are so contradictory, moving forward they will no longer be a part of these rankings. Remaining at #1, the Indianapolis Colts continue their undefeated season with an 18-14 victory over the San Francisco 49ers. The Colts continue to have one of the better scoring offenses and defenses in the league. They have been winning games with offense and other games with defense. Peyton Manning is the NFL's best in the clutch. In addition, they did NOT have us ranked at the #1 spot last week.
Walter Football ranks us 2nd: Peyton Manning somehow threw for 347 yards amid a pretty poor performance. At one point Sunday afternoon, I posted the following in the Live In-Games Thread on the forums: "Manning playing like a drunk. No offense to drunks." Forum member Wraith immediately responded: "Manning playing like Kerry Collins. No offense to drunks." Very true, Wraith, except that Collins would have been dishing out racial slurs as well. And because I have a sick and twisted sense of humor, I found that funny.
Vic Carucci @ NFL.com keeps us in 2nd: For the third time this season, the Colts actually had to work for a victory. Once again, they proved they can handle the pressure.
WEEI in Bahston keeps us in 2nd: The Colts seem to be able to find a way to win whether it looks good or not. Despite Peyton Manning having zero TD passes against the 49ers, the Colts still managed to win the game. Great teams will struggle at times but always find a way to win.
Pro Football Weekly keeps us in 2nd: Caldwell's last loss as a head coach was in 2000 at N.C. State.
NFL.com's Collective Brain Trust keeps us in 2nd
National Football Post keeps us in 2nd: The Colts found a way to win with the winning TD pass coming from someone other than Peyton Manning.
What If Sports keeps us in 2nd
Peter King @ SI keeps us in 2nd: I wouldn't be too alarmed about the so-called struggling Colts on the heels of their narrow win over San Francisco. Thirty other teams in the league wish they were struggling like this. Lots of teams are going to be up and down against the San Francisco defense. One other little clue about Indy's four three-and-outs against the Niners -- NBC compatriot Tony Dungy said he was fairly sure the 49ers offensive line coach, Chris Foerster, a Colts assistant in 2002 and 2003, shared a few clues about Peyton Manning's play-calls and fake-play-calls at the line during the San Fran practice week leading up to the game.
Fan House keeps us in 2nd: Squeaked out a home win over the Alex Smith-led 49ers. Still, a win's a win, and that's what the Colts do. That is now 16 straight in the regular season, giving them a 82-21 record since the beginning of 2003. -- Matt Snyder
CHFF keeps us in 2nd: Last week: 18-14 win vs. San Francisco. Peyton Manning threw for 347 yards but no scores against the Niners. Since the start of 2006, he’s thrown at least one TD pass in 50 of 55 games.
USA Today bumps us up to 1st (+1): They make a good point at the same time: Colts have started 7-0 despite not having a 100 yard rusher.
Don Banks @ SI keeps us in 2nd: It's all so crystal clear now, right? Two undefeated teams remaining, and nice and neatly, one from each conference. It's going to be the Colts-Saints in Miami in early February. Thanks for playing, but we have our winners. Please drive home safely. Then I remember that last year at this time, the Super Bowl matchup was equally clear: The 7-0 Titans were destined to play the 6-1 Giants. Case closed. Only thing is, neither one wound up actually winning a playoff game. Year before it was Patriots-Cowboys, and that turned out being only half right. Get my point? Things can change in the league known as (N)ot (F)or (L)ong. I'm not sure why our team was graced with that rambling.
Covers.com keeps us in 3rd: The Colts can pretty much lock up the division with a win against Houston, but their 30th ranked schedule has us wondering how good they really are.