The NFL preseason schedule begins Sunday, Aug. 9, when the Pittsburgh Steelers and Minnesota Vikings play in the Hall of Fame Game.

Here's a look at the NFL power rankings with the preseason just a few days away:

1. SEAHAWKS: One devastating play away from a second straight Super Bowl, and the Seahawks are determined to wipe away the memory with another inspiring run. Russell Wilson gets the contract he deserves, Bobby Wagner re-ups, too, and the Seahawks are still the deepest team in the NFL.

2. PACKERS: Like Seattle, the Packers have their own playoff nightmare to wipe away. The offense is still dominant with Aaron Rodgers in charge, and the defense should be better, especially on the back end.

3. RAVENS: Not sure why Joe Flacco takes as much grief for not being an elite quarterback. He is. And the team around him is good. Ravens a legit Super Bowl contender.

4. PATRIOTS: The uncertainty that still hovers over Tom Brady is an issue. So is the roster turnover on defense as the Patriots will be without Darrelle Revis, Brandon Browner and Vince Wilfork. Tough enough to defend a Super Bowl title even without all the distractions.

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5. COLTS: Andrew Luck is the best young quarterback in the game, and he always will give the Colts a chance to win. Now the issue is whether GM Ryan Grigson has built a strong enough defense to go with his franchise quarterback.

6. BRONCOS: Peyton Manning is 39, and the Broncos hope that sudden dropoff late last season was strictly injury-related, not age-related.

7. COWBOYS: Curious to see how the Cowboys will replace all those yards DeMarco Murray took with him to Philly. But Tony Romo is still at the top of his game, and now is assured of having Dez Bryant long-term. Cowboys hope defensive coordinator Rod Marinelli can work his magic again.

8. STEELERS: A franchise quarterback in Ben Roethlisberger, a franchise running back in Le'Veon Bell and a franchise receiver in Antonio Brown. If the Steelers can put out a defense that comes close to matching that, Steelers are in the Super Bowl conversation.

9. PANTHERS: A new contract for Cam Newton and a legitimately bright outlook for the Panthers, who navigated through a difficult roster transition last year and came out the other side with a playoff run.

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10. CARDINALS: Amazing job last year by Bruce Arians, who held the Cardinals together after Carson Palmer got hurt and made it to the playoffs. The Cardinals get their QB back, beefed up their offensive line and are a credible threat to the Seahawks.

11. CHIEFS: With Denver not looking like such a lock in the AFC West, the door is open for the Chiefs to get back to the playoffs. Helps to have elite pass rusher Justin Houston back for the long haul.

12. VIKINGS: If you're looking for a sleeper team, try the Vikings. Teddy Bridgewater came a long way as a rookie, and having Adrian Peterson back gives the offense a major boost. Mike Zimmer's defense getting better, too.

13. CHARGERS: Plenty of uncertainty about where the Chargers will be playing in the coming years, but wherever they go (or stay), they've got a playoff-caliber team.

14. LIONS: Jim Caldwell is hell bent on improving the running game, but this team still comes down to Matthew Stafford and the defense. And that defense will be hard-pressed to replace Ndamukong Suh, so we don't see the Lions unseating the Packers just yet.

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15. EAGLES: Is Chip Kelly mad scientist or genius? We'll soon find out if his stunning roster overhaul - starting with Sam Bradford in for Nick Foles - will pan out, or give the skeptics more reason to question the coach's methods.

16. BENGALS: Marvin Lewis says he'll walk away from the Bengals if they win a Super Bowl. Nice try, coach. Let's just see if Andy Dalton can win a playoff game, and then we'll talk.

17. DOLPHINS: A new deal for Ryan Tannehill, a win-or-else edict from team owner Stephen Ross and a massive addition on defense with Ndamukong Suh. Still not sure if Dolphins are ready to contend.

18. SAINTS: Drew Brees loses his go-to tight end in Jimmy Graham, and that'll hurt. But he's good enough to keep the Saints' train moving on offense. The big issue is whether Rob Ryan's defense can take it to the next level.

19. BILLS: Plenty of optimism with Rex Ryan aboard, but even he can't talk his way out of masking his quarterback issues. He hopes a terrific defense and strong running game will cover up some of those issues.

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20. 49ERS: Jim Tomsula not only takes over for Jim Harbaugh, but he does so with a roster that saw huge losses with the retirements of Patrick Willis, Justin Smith and Chris Borland, and the free-agent defections of Frank Gore and Mike Iupati, among others.

21. GIANTS: They're still missing their best defensive player, and you can't diminish the importance of no Jason Pierre-Paul. Eli Manning can go a long way toward masking issues on defense by lighting up the scoreboard with his excellent cast of receivers.

22. TEXANS: J.J. Watt came close to singlehandedly getting the Texans to the playoffs last year, but he'll need some help. Up to Bill O'Brien to squeeze more out of his quarterbacks - not an easy task with Brian Hoyer and Ryan Mallett.

23. JETS: So much rests on Geno Smith, whose development will likely determine how far the Jets go this season. He has better skill position players this year and a much better defense. Now it's up to him.

24. FALCONS: Dan Quinn's presence alone will help the defense get better, and so will first-round linebacker Vic Beasley. If Matt Ryan can get the offense up to speed quickly, there's a chance for the Falcons to get back in the NFC South conversation.

25. RAMS: Jeff Fisher did a commendable job keeping things together last year after another season-ending injury to QB Sam Bradford. Nick Foles now offers stability at the position, and together with an emerging defense, could help put St. Louis back into the playoff mix. Still a tough road ahead in the NFC West.

26. BEARS: John Fox took over for Marc Trestman and immediately took off the kid gloves with quarterback Jay Cutler. Not sure how much good that will do, but at least the excuses have stopped.

27. WASHINGTON: Robert Griffin III will be a Comeback Player of the Year candidate ... if he comes back to the level he was at as a rookie. Big 'if.'

28. BUCCANEERS: It's Jameis Winston's team now. Can't expect immediate results, but if his talent and temperament are right for the NFL, the results will improve. Eventually.

29. RAIDERS: Derek Carr-to-Amari Cooper will be a welcome sight for a Raiders team that hasn't had much to cheer about for years.

30. TITANS: The Titans have their quarterback of the future in Marcus Mariota. Now for the patient process of watching him grow.

31. JAGUARS: Blake Bortles got some valuable experience last year, but there was plenty more bad than good. Just don't see enough around him to offer much confidence in a quick turnaround for the franchise.

32. BROWNS: Josh McCown-or-bust is not quite what we expected when the Browns put their faith in Johnny Manziel last year. And so it goes for the NFL's most tortured franchise.