It’s the NFC’s turn for some bold predictions, including the leagues best team, worst team and a historically bad offense:
Dallas Cowboys – Now healthy, still no playoffs. Last year Dallas was bitten by the injury bug big time, which was a big reason for them going 4-12. Now the team is coming into the season at full strength but I feel that what could be the leagues worst defense will fail them in many chances. 6-10 and last place in the division, sounds crazy but right.
New York Giants – Eli Manning has a Peyton Manning (prime) type year. Throwing the ball to Beckham Jr., Cruz and Shepard will make Eli look like a beast this year. If Cruz is healthy he will be manning the slot and could have a comeback year while Sterling Shepard will be playing the “Martavis Bryant” role, hopefully just the on the field part. I didn’t mention Odell because nothing needs to be said, him and Eli have been great together so far and I don’t see that changing.
Philadelphia Eagles – Zach Ertz will lead the team in receptions, yards and touchdowns. So far in his career Ertz has been very underwhelming. It seems every year is going to be his breakout year, well this is the year. With Bradford, Daniels or Wentz at quarterback Ertz will get an abundance on targets and he will capitalize.
Washington Redskins – Josh Norman will be exposed at a system corner. Norman had a great season last year and deserves a lot of credit. This year will be much different though, Washington doesn’t have a stacked defense like they do in Carolina to help him out. Another bold prediction, Beckham Jr. DOMINATES him in their two match ups.
Atlanta Falcons – Matt Ryan keeps declining. There was a time just a few years back that Matt Ryan was a top tier quarterback. However it seems the better Julio Jones gets, the worse Ryan gets. Ryan had his worst season last year since his rookie season with 21 touchdowns. The ride may be over for Ryan in Atlanta, unless they are happy with being a mediocre team.
Carolina Panthers – Luke Kuechly gets some MVP looks. Without question Kuechly is the best linebacker in the NFL. When a tackle, forced fumble or even interception is needed Luke is always there to save the Panthers defense. While his overall tackle numbers took a dip last year I expect him to break his career high of 164 tackles and 4 interceptions. Is there anything this guy can’t do?!?
New Orleans Saints – Drew Brees doesn’t throw for 5,000 yards. We will see for the first time in a long time the Saints lean towards a run heavy offense. Mark Ingram has really proven his worth to the organization and ended up having a very solid year last year. I expect Brees to get close to the milestone I just think he comes up short.
Tampa Bay Bucs – Mike Evans bounces back, Doug Martin stumbles. Evans finished with a pathetic 3 touchdowns last year which is mind boggling after putting up 12 his rookie season. I like Evans to have a year compared to Allen Robinsons last year. Meanwhile Martin had a great year last year and got himself a nice new contract. Well I don’t see him living up to it, Sims will take away carries and eventually they will split the carries almost evenly.
Chicago Bears – At least they will get the first pick in the draft. The Kevin White hype in unbelievable for a guy who hasn’t played a game and comes from a school that has never produced anyone that has had staying power on the offensive side of the ball. The defense will also be near the bottom of the league and the Bears will regret spending all that money on Trevathon. As you can see I’m not very high on Chicago this year.
Detroit Lions – Miles Killebrew is the best rookie safety. Bob Quinn absolutely loves Killebrew as well as the coaching staff. He is a big, strong and hard hitting safety who does lack ball skills but will remind fans of Bob Sanders when he lays the boom. The Lions might not have a good season but Miles could be the reason for Detroit fans to keep tuning in.
Green Bay Packers – Rodgers brings home the MVP. After losing Nelson before the season it was clear that Rodgers wouldn’t be his dominant self. Cobb and Adams disappointed the Green Bay faithful is showing neither are go to guy material. With Nelson returning things automatically become much better, Rodgers get his number one wideout back and gets a trophy.
Minnesota Vikings – Teddy Bridgewater and Laquon Treadwell won’t mesh. Treadwell was the best reciever in this years draft and somehow he fell behind guys like Fuller, Coleman and Doctson. But playing with a quarterback with a arm as strong as a limp noodle will not be a great situation for the rookie. If Teddy and the offense can’t improve the passing game then the Vikings team, no matter how great the defense is will struggle.
Arizona Cardinals – Here come the Champs. Not a very bold prediction since they are a very popular pick but I’m sold on this team and on Bruce Arians as the best coach in the NFL. If Carson Palmer can stay healthy I don’t see why this team can’t win 14 games and the Super Bowl. I didn’t think it was possible but the defense got even stronger by adding Chandler Jones, this team is scary.
Los Angelos Rams – Robert Quinn will get at least 15 sacks. If you don’t know who Robert Quinn is then you aren’t a fan of defense. This guy is a workhorse and a sack machine. Last year Quinn only played in 8 games and managed 5 sacks but don’t count him out. Aaron Donald will demand double teams on every play leaving number 94 with a big advantage on some unlucky linemen.
San Francisco – No wide receiver over 850 yards. This team has no wideout worth taking in any fantasy draft before round 10 and this might be on of the worst passing teams the NFL has ever seen. The quarterback “competition” will more than likely be to find out who they will keep as a backup for next year. I wonder what NCAA team Chip Kelly will be coaching next year…
Seattle Seahawks – Doug Baldwin was not worth the money. If you take away the ridiculous stretch of 10 touchdowns in 4 games last year Baldwin had a very average year. If Balwin hits double digit touchdowns this year I think Seattle should be happy, expect Tyler Lockett to become Russell Wilson’s favorite weapon for the next few years.