NFL.com writer Gregg Rosenthal decided to have a go at some divisional power rankings, and lo and behold, the NFC West came up on top. The NFC has re-emerged as the stronger conference, although like anything, that can swing back fairly quickly. The NFC dominated much of the '80s and '90s, but the emergence of the Broncos in the late '90s started the swing back to AFC dominance.
These rankings come a year after the NFC West was seventh heading into training camp. The 49ers were coming off a strong 2011 season, but the rest of the division had struggled. Obviously, things changed just a little bit in 2012. Now, we head into 2013 with the division clearly on the rise. The 49ers and Seahawks are two of the favorites to come out of the NFC, while the Rams had the best divisional record and are bringing in a solid draft class. The Cardinals have work to do, but adding Carson Palmer adds a level of intrigue.
When the rest of the division is doing their thing against non-divisional opponents, do you ever think about division pride and dominance? Or does any of that matter at all? Given that the NFC West has been maligned for much of its most recent existence, does a little divisional domination allow you to puff out your chest a little bit? Or is 49ers dominance all that matters?