Broncos, Seahawks top AP Pro32 rankings heading into Super Bowl rematch

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NEW YORK — The Seattle Seahawks and Denver Broncos finished last season as the top two teams in the league.

Heading into their Super Bowl rematch Sunday, that's where they are in the latest AP Pro32 rankings.

The Broncos moved to the top spot after holding off the Kansas City Chiefs 24-17 at home, and the Seahawks dropped to No. 2 after they lost to the Chargers 30-21.

Denver had 10 first-place votes in the 12-member media panel that regularly covers the league. Seattle, which routed Denver in the Super Bowl at MetLife Stadium in February, and Cincinnati each got one first-place vote.

Sunday's rematch is at CenturyLink Field, where the Seahawks have won 18 of their past 19 including the playoffs.

"Even with one loss, the Seahawks will regain the top spot if they beat Denver," Alex Marvez of Foxsports.com said.

The Bengals moved up a spot to No. 3 after beating the Falcons 24-10.

"I'm very impressed with Cincinnati so far this season," said ESPN's Herm Edwards, who gave the Bengals a first-place vote. "That defense looks ready for the playoffs."

The Bengals host the Titans on Sunday and then have a bye before an Oct. 5 road test in prime time against Tom Brady and the Patriots, who moved to No. 7 in the poll after routing the Vikings.

The Eagles are No. 5 after rallying again in the second half for a 30-27 win over the Colts on Monday night. The Eagles are the first team in NFL history to overcome double-digit halftime deficits in the first two games.

Philadelphia is 2-0 and in first place in the NFC East.

"That's two straight comeback wins for the Eagles, who get a major boost from speedy running back Darren Sproles, who makes you think you're playing Madden 2014 when you watch him fly around the field," Newsday's Bob Glauber said.

The Panthers and Cardinals, who also are both off to 2-0 starts, made big climbs to No. 5 and No. 6.

Carolina faces a big test Sunday night when it hosts Pittsburgh.

"The defense is playing great and Cam (Newton) threw well from the pocket," NBC Sports' Tony Dungy said.

The Panthers and Cardinals have also won their games with two different starting quarterbacks.

"Unheralded (Cardinals coach) Bruce Arians may be the best coach this side of Bill Belichick," said Ira Kaufman of the Tampa Tribune.

Among the teams that made the biggest drop are the New Orleans Saints, who fell from No. 6 to 17 after blowing a late lead and losing to the Cleveland Browns. The Saints are 0-2 going into their home opener against the Minnesota Vikings.

"Defense continues to hold the winless Saints back," Rick Gosselin of The Dallas Morning News said. "They rank second in the NFL in offense, but 30th in defense."

There's little surprise that the 0-2 New York Giants, Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Jacksonville Jaguars and Oakland Raiders round out the bottom four spots in the poll.

"Despite an active offseason, the Raiders haven't been doing much of anything well," Jenny Vrentas of The Monday Morning Quarterback said.


AP NFL website: http://www.pro32.ap.org and http://www.twitter.com/AP_NFL

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