BALTIMORE - SEPTEMBER 26: Ray Rice #27 of the Baltimore Ravens runs the ball against the Cleveland Browns at M&T Bank Stadium on September 26 2010 in Baltimore Maryland. The Ravens defeated the Browns 24-17. (Photo by Larry French/Getty Images)
Teams: (Alphabetically Listed)
With the 2012 Regular Season only just over a month away, I figured I would take a look at each and every Team, Division, and take a look at My Superbowl Favorites. Lets get started.
We answered a few needs in this draft, even though we went with BPA we got three offensive linemen, and added a potential true # 2 WR opposite of Fitzgerald. We didn't add shining Free Agents but we got two under the radar signings with William Gay and Adam Snyder.
They look their best on paper that they have in awhile. Matt Ryan is heading into his 5th season and it might finally be his chance to take his team far into the Playoffs. He hasn't won a single playoff game in his career but with Julio Jones and Roddy White on the outside and a strong running game, Ryan will win the South for the second time in his career.
Older but talented on Defense, Young and talented on Offense. Torrey Smith and Anquan Boldin WR, Ray Rice in the Backfield, and Joe Flacco passing the ball. This team is in line for another possible SB run, if Cundiff doesn't get "distracted" again.
Finally the Bills are relevant again. They gained national attention after the beat the Pats last year. Now with depth, and starters who went down with injury last year returning the Bills should be able to challenge the Jets and Pats for the AFC East title.
They're still a year or two away from challenging the Saints and Falcons for the NFC South, but Cam Newton can only get better. A rookie who dominated the league statistically last year should get a few more wins, but until they add some pieces on Defense they'll hold possibly the 3rd Spot in the South.
Losing Cutler and Forte really hurt them down the stretch. The team who would have actually challenged the Saints in the playoffs instead of the Lions. Wit the addition of Brandon Marshall and a possible late season return by Johnny Knox, the Bears now have a WR corps.
The team who came out of nowhere last season with the Rookie duo of AJ Green and Andy Dalton, they're in a good position to challenge in the AFC North this season thanks to having the most picks in the 2012 Draft. They added BenJarvus Green- Ellis in FA to replace Cedric Benson. In the draft they added several good looking players to compete and eventually win they're roster spots.
Adding Oklahoma State QB Brandon Weeden, and Alabama RB Trent Richardson, they are now in position to build. I know they're saying Colt McCoy will potentially get a chance to battle for the starting role, but as of now all signs point to Weeden. Adding Gordon in the Supplemental Draft could also add a solid WR on the outside, with Greg Little possibly becoming the WR they expect him to be.
Time is running out here. Tony Romo is on the hot seat after the Cowboys pursued and got Kyle Orton. He has Dez Bryant and Miles Austin at WR, Jason Witten at TE, and DeMarco Murray at RB, they have all the pieces to be successful. It's time for Romo to carry them back to the Playoffs and make that deep run that Cowboys fans got a taste of in 2009.
Well.. With their win in the Manning Sweepstakes a lot of people have put them in the running for SB. I don't see it. I doubt that Manning is 100% and in a division with the rough hitting Raiders and a KC Defense run by Romeo Crennel, it'll be interesting to see how his neck holds up against them. (That and the Cardinals may want some payback for him going to Denver)
Stafford to Megatron... What more does a team need? (Besides the Warner to Fitz connection, or the Manning to Fitz conne... I'm done). Injuries decimated their run game last year leaving them with virtually no one, except for one guy. Brandon Pettigrew is a red-zone threat and could have his usefulness elevated in 2012 with the potential Madden Curse. Can you imagine Megatron, Stafford, and the CFL's Optimus Prime?!
Green Bay Packers:
The Packers are hungry this year. After losing to the Giants in the Divisional Round of the Playoffs after going 15-1 they lost 37-20 to the Giants. They retained a few of their UFA's and added solid players in the Draft. Nick Perry is expected to start right away, but Terrell Manning looked really good during OTA's and Minicamp and could push his way into the starting rotation.
After Andre Johnson and Matt Schaub went down with injury, as well as Leinart going down the following week and a pair of veteran QB being useless, people thought the Titans would sneak in and win the AFC South. Unfortunately for them, two guys by the name of Arian Foster and Ben Tate helped a Rookie QB named TJ Yates lead the Texans to their first AFC South crowning and their first Playoff appearance.
Winning the "Suck for Luck" sweepstakes was the second time this Franchise has sucked to secure a Dynasty. The other time? Peyton Manning, Lucks predecessor. They lost key players, but added youth to several positions who are talented.
Blaine Gabbert has to step up here. He won the starting role this year, but with the addition of Henne, terrible as he may be, showed that the FO has little confidence in the 2nd year QB. Blackmon and newly acquired WR Laurent Robinson give the Jags a passing duo, and MJD in the Backfield adds another dimension to this team.
Kansas City Chiefs:
After beating the Packers last year, Romeo Crennel was no longer just interim HC, he was Officially the Head Coach. Their defense looks scary, and with Matt Cassel returning from injury, and the addition of former Madden Cover winner Peyton Hillis and Jamaal Charles returning from his own injury, they have a two headed monster in the backfield. That coupled with Dwayne Bowe and Steve Breaston on the outside, this offense could possibly be just like the 2010 Chiefs.
The loss of Brandon Marshall hurt, but they added Ochocinco, soon to be Johnson, and drafted Ryan Tannehill. Matt Moore is the projected starter, and Reggie Bush seems to have found his groove in Miami.
They may not have Adrian Peterson for a bit during the 2012 season, so the Vikings will expect more from Toby Gerhart. Christian Ponder now has an offseason and experience under his belt so they should compete in games, but don't expect them to compete for the NFC North just yet.
New England Patriots:
Another loss in the SB to the Giants hurts. They're defense is still suspect, but going up to a two team NFC West should help their chances this season. Tom Brady will probably have two of his favorite three targets to start the season so their offense will be fine.
New Orleans Saints:
With penalties from the NFL banning multiple members of the team, it will be up to the Saints Offense to put up enough points to win games early on in the season, if they want to keep up with the Falcons and possibly even the Panthers and Buccaneers. Drew Brees is finally wrapped up long time so we'll get to see what the Saints are able to do.
New York Giants:
With another SB win under their belts they're the team to beat in the NFL. The Eagles and Cowboys will be hungry to take them down so the NFC East should be very competitive this year.
New York Jets:
Mark Sanchez is in the hot seat. If he doesn't start hot fans will be calling for Tim Tebow to take the reigns in New York, and the last time fans called for Tebow they got him. Look for Sanchez to turn it up this year.
Their trade for Carson Palmer was risky, but Darren McFadden could be in for a good year. Darius Heyward-Bey will start again, but I'm expecting Juron Criner to be the number two man in Oakland. They'll be the team that could possibly beat the Broncos, with the Chiefs as a Darkhorse team.
An upsetting season for the "Dream Team" last year. I predict a full season for Michael Vick and possibly a NFC East crowning if their Defense can play well as long as DRC and Asomugha can shut down opposition passing games.
I won't say this is a rebuilding year, but like a developmental year. They got rid of older starters on Defense so they're expecting some of the younger guys to step up. I'm not saying they're out of the race for the AFC North, but it will be tougher to stop the likes of Ray Rice or Trent Richardson.
San Diego Chargers:
Finally letting Vincent Jackson go hurt them. Phillip Rivers needs to stop putting up numbers and starting winning games in order to maintain a shred of hope that the Charger fans may hold. (But they regret letting Brees go).
San Francisco 49ers:
They won the West last year, and with the signings they made this year, they're on pace to win it again, but this time with more challenge coming from the three other teams. Barring injury, they could possibly be the number 1 or 2 seed in the NFC again this year.
With the 3- Way QB battle happening in Seattle. fans are anxious to see who pulls it out. Will it be newly acquired Matt Flynn, or last years starter Tavaris Jackson, or even darkhorse rookie QB, Russell Wilson? Whoever it is, they'll need to win without RB Marshawn Lynch, who could be facing a potential suspension after his DUI.
St. Louis Rams:
Sam Bradford is entering year 3 in the NFL, and after a Sophomore slump last year he should rebound, but with the lack of talent at WR the Rams still have a long way to go to challenge for the NFC West crown again. FA coach Jeff Fisher should turn the Defense around though.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers:
With a big offseason with both player signings and coach signing, this team is on the up. With the inspirational signing of former Rutgers player Eric LeGrand the Bucs seem to be a strong mental team. They need to start hot to compete though.
After naming Hasselbeck the projected starter again this year, it seems that the Titans aren't sure if Jake Locker is ready yet. I disagree. He needs to get in game reps in order to be best ready, and with a RB like Chris Johnson the pressure shouldn't be to heavy on him.
And Finally, Washington Redskins:
RGIII could be the next Cam Newton. He could possibly be the savior that team has been looking for. Not to many wins in his first season, nor a big chance to compete in the East, but 2013 could seem the Skins be dominate.
*- Baltimore Ravens: 13-3
y- Cincinnati Bengals: 10-6
Pittsburgh Steelers: 9-7
Cleveland Browns: 7-9
z- Buffalo Bills:12-4
y- New England Patriots: 10-6
New York Jets: 9-7
Miami Dolphins 8-8
z,y- Denver Broncos: 9-7
Oakland Raider: 9-7
Kansas City Chiefs: 8-8
San Diego Chargers: 6-10
z,y- Houston Texans: 11-5
Tennessee Titans: 10-6
Indianapolis Colts: 7-9
Jacksonville Jaguars: 4-12
* Green Bay Packers: 14-2
y- Chicago Bears: 13-3
Detroit Lions: 9-7
Minnesota Vikings: 7-9
z,y- Philadelphia Eagles: 11-5
y-Dallas Cowboys: 10-6
New York Giants: 9-7
Washington Redskins: 6-10
z,y- San Francisco 49ers: 12-4
Arizona Cardinals: 9-7/10-6
Seattle Seahawks: 6-10
St. Louis Rams: 5-11
z- Atlanta Falcons: 13-3
New Orleans Saints: 10-6
Carolina Panthers: 9-7
Tampa Bay Buccaneers: 8-8
AFC: Baltimore Ravens
NFC: Chicago Bears
So what do you think? Do you agree?