The NFL season is almost here, we almost lost it, but it is almost here. Here now is my 2011 season outlook…
American Football Conference
San Diego Chargers(9-7)
Kansas City Chiefs(8-8)
West Summary: I think the Chiefs are pretenders. Yes they won the division last year, but I don’t think they will be as good as last year. The Chargers will rebound from a bad 2010 season where they were expected to do big things. The Broncos will be better but have some learning to do as far as winning. They also need to figure out what the hell do to with Tim Tebow. The Raiders, well, they’re the Raiders, Yes they were 8-8, but they now have a new coach and the same problems as before.
North Summary: The Steelers are the AFC champions and will continue to be in the conversation as far as the best of the AFC goes as long as Big Ben is playing there. The Ravens will also be just as competitive and could even win this division. The Browns finally have a quarterback in Colt McCoy and will be a much improved team overall. The Bengals have to be bad if Carson Palmer chooses retirement over playing another down for them. Andy Dalton is going to struggle big time and this time will even be lucky to win the three games I predicted.
Houston Texans (11-5)
South Summary: This will be the year the Texans get over the hump so long as Arian Foster is healthy. The Colts go as Peyton Manning goes and lately, that’s been nowhere because he has been hurt. I think this team will not be as good as years past and Mr. Manning may noe be playing through this five year contract he just signed. They need to prepare for life after him…and soon. The Jaguars have a quarterback crisis that may plague them all season and the Titans need Chris Johnson to be somewhat competitive this year and I see him sitting out for a while.
New England Patriots(14-2)
New York Jets (11-5)
East Summary: The Patriots have a pretty easy schedule and should win their division handily. The Jets will be good despite the fact that Mark Sanchez and LaDanian Tomlinson are overrated players. The Dolphins are in a rebuilding mode and the Bills, well, they did get new uniforms.
National Football Conference
St. Louis Rams(9-7)
San Francisco 49ers(6-10)
West Summary: The Rams in my view are the team that will win this division. They have a pretty good offense, the defense is decent, and Sam Bradford is the best quarterback in the division. The Cardinals will be much improved with Kevin Kolb at quarterback but they don’t have a running game and their rookie Ryan Williams went down in the preseason. The Seahawks are very overrated, they’ll be 7-9 again, but they aren’t winning the division, that was just sad. Speaking of sad, that describes the 49ers perfectly. This team will not get any better if Alex Smith continues to be first on any NFL depth chart. This experiment should have ended years ago and 49ers fans will see why this season.
Green Bay Packers(12-4)
Chicago Bears (8-8)
North Summary: The Packers will continue their Super Bowl form and not only that, but many healthy bodies will be returning so they can only get better. The Lions, yes the Lions, will make the playoffs for the first time in the 21st Century so long as Matthew Stafford stays healthy. The Bears under Jay Cutler are soft and that may hurt them. Also, their additions like Marion Barber and Roy Williams did little to improve the team. Someone has to take the bottom spot in the division and that team is the Vikings, though Donovan McNabb will be a welcome addition.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers(11-5)
New Orleans Saints (9-7)
South Summary: In years past the last place team from the year before wins the division, but that trend will end as the Falcons will repeat as division winners and could go further than that. The Buccaneers under Josh Freeman and the youth movement will continue to improve as they will make another run at postseason play. The Saints got hit in the mouth by the Seahawks in the playoffs last year and I think that affects them going forward this season. The Panthers are rebuilding under Cam Newton but the team will improve.
New York Giants(7-9)
Washington Redskins (2-14)
East Summary: The Eagles will live up to the hype and win this division by a landslide. I do expect big things from this team and so should you. The Cowboys need Tony Romo to step his game up if they want to be considered any good and it probably won’t happen. The Giants are overrated and will not win 10 games like last year. Eli Manning sucks! As far as the Redskins go, is it too late to rehire Joe Gibbs again?