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ESPN post-Super Bowl power ranking is kind to the Dallas Cowboys

It’s officially the offseason for all NFL teams, so power rankings will be coming regularly.

NFL: Dallas Cowboys at Philadelphia Eagles Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports

That’s it. The 2021 NFL season is over as the Los Angeles Rams defeated the Cincinnati Bengals in the Super Bowl. Now, all teams are looking forward to the 2022 season.

As such, we have the first of many-to-come offseason power rankings from the folks over at ESPN. If you thought that the Rams would be the favorite to repeat, you would be wrong. Odds released from various sources have the Kansas City Chiefs and the Buffalo Bills as favorites for Super Bowl LVII. But there is another way to rank the favorites heading into the 2022 season, and that is through unscientific power rankings.

In ESPN’s post-Super Bowl power rankings, the Chiefs come in first and the Bills are second. Our Dallas Cowboys? They come in seventh.

7. Dallas Cowboys

2021 record: 12-5

Offseason in three or fewer words: Better win now

Mike McCarthy is on the clock, despite a 12-5 finish and NFC East title in 2021. It’s about what the Cowboys didn’t do in 2021, which was win at least one playoff game. Dan Quinn opted to remain with team, so maybe he could be the future Cowboys coach. For the Cowboys to take the next step under McCarthy, the offense has to find its form. Yes, they were No. 1 in yards and points in 2021, but those numbers are a bit hollow when looked at more closely. McCarthy’s expertise is on the offensive side of the ball. He’ll need to get the run game back in form and aid Kellen Moore when things are not going perfectly. — Todd Archer

Seventh is a pretty decent ranking after the Cowboys face-planted in the playoffs. They had a strong regular-season record at 12-5, but even that comes with a bit of an asterisk. The Cowboys first part of the season was rolling right along, but they started stumbling down the stretch before they crashed out.

The continuity of keeping Dan Quinn and Kellen Moore has probably aided the way the Cowboys are judged by many sources. While free agency will certainly be a challenge for Dallas, they still have plenty of talent on their roster.

The six teams ahead of Dallas in the rankings are the Chiefs, Bills, Rams, Packers, Bengals and 49ers. The Packers will only stay that high if Aaron Rodgers decides he wants to return. If he moves on, the Packers drop precipitously. The 49ers are also somewhat of a surprise to be ranked this high with the uncertainty about their quarterback situation.

As for our friends in the NFC East, the Eagles are 19th, the Commanders are 25th, and the Giants are 27th.

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