The NFL’s regular season will officially kick off in New Orleans Sept. 9 when Brett Favre, Adrian Peterson and the Minnesota Vikings head to the Louisiana Superdome to play Drew Brees and the defending Super Bowl Champion Saints. I think it is time to make some division-by-division predictions for the 2010-11 NFL season.
The Eagles are giving a young, but talented, Kevin Kolb the reigns to the offense, and he is expected to be the future of the franchise. The new defensive players they added, such as Brandon Graham and Kurt Coleman, make me want to pick the Eagles to win this division. However, I have to pick the Dallas Cowboys to take the NFC East title. If they can keep the distractions to a minimum, it’s hard to pick against them. I expect the New York Giants to contend, as well, just like the Eagles. The division will play out in the order of Dallas, Philadelphia, New York and Washington.
I like the San Francisco 49ers in this division. Their defense is going to be lights out with Patrick Willis manning the middle at linebacker. The Seattle Seahawks will take second just because the St. Louis Rams and Arizona Cardinals are going to be very bad. The West will finish San Francisco, Seattle, St. Louis and Arizona, respectively.
I’m not drinking the Favre Kool Aid this year. It’s going to be a close race, but give me Aaron Rodgers and the Green Bay Packers over the Minnesota Vikings. The Chicago Bears are going to be really bad this year. For the Detroit Lions, another year of improvement for quarterback Matt Stafford and their new defensive tackle, Indomican Suh, will make them a better team this year. Give me Green Bay, Minnesota, Detroit and Chicago, in that order.
Everyone knows which ever team finishes last in the NFC South will end up winning the division in the next season. Tampa Bay Buccaneers anyone? I’m sorry, I can’t do it. Watch out for the Atlanta Falcons. I like quarterback Matt Ryan and running back Michael Turner. The New Orleans Saints won’t have the hangover of losing a Super Bowl but people will be aiming for them this year. The Carolina Panthers come in third only because Tampa Bay is going to be so bad. Atlanta wins the division followed by New Orleans, Carolina and Tampa Bay.
This division could have three playoff teams this year in my opinion. With cornerback Darrelle Revis ending his holdout and returning to the New York Jets, give me the Jets to win the East just barely over the Miami Dolphins and New England Patriots. Their offense worries me, but the Jets’ defense will make up for that. The Buffalo Bills will win two games this year. It’s tough, but I’ll take the Jets, Dolphins, Patriots, and Bills.
This is the worst division in football after the San Diego Chargers. Sorry, all you newly crowned Denver Broncos fans, but even Tim Tebow can’t help the Broncos. There is not much to say here. The Chargers win this division comfortably followed by the Oakland Raiders, Broncos and Kansas City Chiefs.
The Baltimore Ravens could win this division, but I’m going to go with the Cincinnati Bengals. I love both teams’ defenses. The only difference is I’ll take Carson Palmer over Joe Flacco
as quarterback. The Pittsburgh Steelers fit in third. Especially with missing quarterback Ben Roethlisberger for the first four weeks. One of those two games Buffalo will win this year will be against the Cleveland Browns. They will be the worst team in the NFL this year. Bengals, Ravens, Steelers, Browns is how I see the North playing out.
Let’s be realistic here. It is going to be close to impossible to win the AFC South unless Peyton Manning retires, gets hurt or misses games due to commercial shoots. The Jags will surprise people. The offense is good enough with the young receivers and MJD. The defense will be drastically improved from last year. First round pick, defensive tackle Tyson Alualu looked great in the preseason. They brought in middle linebacker Kirk Morrison who has averaged over 100 tackles a year in his first five seasons. He also allows Daryl Smith and Justin Durant go back to their natural positions at outside linebacker. Houston has to stay healthy to win eight games, and I don’t trust their running game. Tennessee lost a lot on defense. I’m not impressed with them. Give me the Colts, Jaguars, Texans and Titans, in that order.
None of this matters once they start playing. Every team is undefeated right now. Anything can happen, so let’s watch it play out.