Are You Ready For Some Football!
Ok, preseason is right around the corner, time for my most inaccurate post of the year.
The AFC East- I think the Pats pretty much have a walk to the division title. I think my Jets might improve over last years lackluster performance, but I have a hard time imagining them clicking like they did a couple years ago. Hopefully, Tebow will scare Sanchez into playing his best, which is pretty damn good, but I fear that the Jets will suffer from dual QB syndrome where the coaches will flip flop QB's at the cost of losing games. One thing I can guarantee, if Tebow takes significant snaps and scores I am not doing the Tebow. The Jets might have a chance at a wildcard spot, but I'm not going to hold my breath. Bills and Dolphins? Both teams are a mess.
AFC North- Toughest division this year. The Ravens and the Steelers are going to continue to be very solid solid teams. I think the Steelers will be a little bit stronger than the Ravens and will probably win the division. However, the Bengals are my long shot pick of the year, so I will be rooting for them. Outside of their division games they have a pretty easy schedule. If they can pull an upset of the Ravens in the first week, they will have a real shot at the division title. Even Randy Lerner (the owner) has given up hope for the Browns and with their division as tough as it is I think they have fourth place in the division locked down.
AFC South- I think the Texans will win it again. It will be interesting to see how the Colts play this year with Luck in the QB slot, if he is half as talented as everyone believes the Colts will be the most improved team of the year but it is hard to believe that he will be able to take such and abysmal team to the playoffs like Peyton did. I think the Titans and the Jaguars will both improve slightly from last year but will remain mediocre at best.
AFC West- Peyton Manning with the Broncos? How can you not like that pick. IMO, Peyton Manning is the best QB playing today, not only as a player but also at managing the offense, as long as Denver allows Peyton to do his thing and give him the freedom to call plays at the line of scrimmage I think they have a real shot at the superbowl. Without Peyton, the Broncos are a stronger team than the Colts, with him, they should be phenomenal. The only risks are if Manning and McCoy don't get along or Peyton has continuing problems with his injury. The rest of the division was mediocre last year, I think Oakland gets worse, the Chiefs get a little better and the Chargers? The Chargers are good at trash talking, a pity they don't put that kind of effort into the game, I think they win less than 50% this year.
NFC East- The Giants aren't going back to the playoffs this year, having lost both Manningham and Jacobs, I look for the Giants to have a less than .500 season. I'm not a fan in the slightest but I think the Eagles are probably the favorites to win the division. I think the Cowboys still have too much drama to be a competitive team. I think the Redskins offense is shaping up to look decent this year, and their defense is quite solid. I believe it is quite possible that they will go over .500 this year and at least not be on the bottom of the division.
NFC North- Packers Packers Packers. Their offense is phenomenal and they have put a lot of effort into revamping their pathetic defense. If the defense actually walks onto the field this year a deep playoff run is almost guaranteed, even if they don't show up, the offense is perfectly capable of carrying the team as they have demonstrated the last two years. The Lions are a mess, they have had sevens arrests during the offseason which might be a new NFL record. Such a shame because they were starting to look promising, but with all the shit that is happening I expect them to take a step backwards this year. The Vikings will continue to suck, they have raw talent on their team with Percy Harvin and Adrian Peterson but they lack the leadership to get a good rhythm on the offense. They really should have overhauled their coaching staff during the off season. The Bears will probably improve slightly over last year, maybe have a shot at the wild card, they won't beat the Packers.
NFC South- With the suspensions on their defense and mission Sean Payton the Saints are in trouble. Sure their offense is very solid, but they have a tough schedule. The contenders for the division title will be the Falcons and the Panthers. IMO it will be completely up to how the Panthers defense performs. They don't need to be great, just decent and the Panthers will win the division. I expect the Falcons performance to be very similar to last year, so if the Panthers defense remains atrocious, the Falcons will win the division. I don't know what has happened to the Buccaneers, I thought they looked like a promising up and coming team a few years ago, obviously I was wrong- they suck.
NFC West- The 49ers should win the division, their defense is excellent and they are stacked with talented receivers and Frank Gore is a solid RB. Their weakness is Alex Smith and I think it will be because of him that they will be shut down in the early stages of the playoffs. IMO the 49ers should have replaced him years ago. I consider the rest of the division to be very weak, and the NFC West remains the worst division in the league.
Well there are my preseason predictions, made part of the permanent record so everyone can laugh at how wrong I am come the post season.