2010 NFL Season Preview and Predictions

Posted: August 28, 2010 in Uncategorized
Tags: , , ,

Remember earlier this summer when I said I thought my Super Bowl pick was going to be a Saints-Colts rematch? Yeah, I changed my mind. I just can’t bring myself to pick the same teams as everyone else. Plus, both of those teams actually have some pretty big question marks (hint: they start with a “de” and end in “fense”). Below are my predictions division-by-division with my somewhat surprising Super Bowl pick at the bottom.

AFC
East
1) New York Jets (12-4)

The Jets have a ton of talent at pretty much every position, but they need to get a deal done with Darrelle Revis soon (which I think they will). My only other concern, and it’s kind of a big one, is Mark Sanchez — I still don’t fully trust him.

2) New England Patriots (10-6)
I expect big things from the Pats offense (maybe not 2007 big, but big nonetheless), but I’m very worried about the defense — especially after the loss of Ty Warren. The secondary should be solid, but the front seven is average at best.

3) Miami Dolphins (7-9)
I wouldn’t be shocked to see the Dolphins make a playoff push, but I think they’re still a year away from being a legitimate contender. Chad Henne has the potential to be a very good quarterback, but he’s not quite there yet. Neither is Miami’s defense.

4) Buffalo Bills (4-12)
The Bills simply aren’t very good. On the bright side, I’m excited to watch C.J. Spiller play. He’s already dazzled in the preseason and I expect him to win the starting running back job before long.

North
1) Baltimore Ravens (11-5)

I like everything about the Ravens. Joe Flacco has the potential to be an elite quarterback, Ray Rice is already an elite running back, the 1-2 receiving punch of Anquan Boldin and Derrick Mason should be solid, and the defense should be great as always assuming Ed Reed comes back this season (and still very good even if he doesn’t).

2) Cincinnati Bengals (10-6)
They’ll definitely be the most intriguing team this season, but don’t confuse entertainment with greatness — Carson Palmer and Terrell Owens haven’t been elite players in a few years. Cincy will be very good, but not a Super Bowl contender.

3) Pittsburgh Steelers (8-8)
Obviously not having Ben Roethlisberger for the first 4-6 weeks (most likely four) hurts, especially considering how tough the Steelers’ early-season schedule is. If they survive that stretch, though, they have the pieces (especially on defense) to make a playoff push.

4) Cleveland Browns (4-12)
Jake Delhomme’s an upgrade over the Browns’ quarterback mess from last season, but he’s still nothing more than a placeholder until Colt McCoy’s ready. The rest of the team is terrible.

South
1) Indianapolis Colts (12-4)

See Patriots, New England. Except with a slightly better front seven and even more weapons on offense.

2) Houston Texans (9-7)
The good news is the Texans will be above .500 for the second straight season. The bad news is they’ll just miss the playoffs for the second straight season. They have one of the toughest schedules in the NFL and I don’t have much faith in their running game.

3) Tennessee Titans (7-9)
Chris Johnson’s the most exciting and arguably the best player in the NFL, but I’m not too impressed by the rest of the Titans. I’m not sold on Vince Young yet and I’m even less sold on his receiving corps. The defense is middle-of-the-road.

4) Jacksonville Jaguars (6-10)
Much like the Titans, the Jags have a great running back and not much else. The days of them consistently having one of the best defenses in the league are gone.

West
1) San Diego Chargers (11-5)

If the Chargers don’t start 6-0, I’ll be shocked (check out this cakewalk of a first six weeks). They’ll easily win their division, but I have too many questions about their receiving corps (especially because it seems like a lock that Vincent Jackson won’t be back) and secondary to consider them a true Super Bowl contender.

2) Denver Broncos (8-8)
I like Knowshon Moreno and the defensive line, but that’s about it. What’s that saying? “If you have two quarterbacks, you actually have none.” Well, Denver has three, but none of them are any good.

3) Kansas City Chiefs (5-11)
I like KC’s running game with Jamaal Charles and Thomas Jones, but Matt Cassel came back to earth last year and the defense isn’t very good.

4) Oakland Raiders (5-11)
Al Davis is dumb enough to call Jason Campbell the next Ken Stabler. I’m not.

NFC
East
1) Dallas Cowboys (12-4)

The Cowboys have all the pieces to win it all. I just think it would be hilarious if they blew the chance to play in the Super Bowl they’re hosting by choking in the NFC title game. Which is exactly why I’m picking that to happen.

2) Philadelphia Eagles (9-7)
The Eagles have a very good defense and some big-time playmakers on offense, but let’s not forget that this is Kevin Kolb’s first full season as a starter. I think he’ll be a very good quarterback, but there are definitely going to be some bumps along the way.

3) New York Giants (8-8)
The Giants don’t have any glaring weaknesses, but they don’t have any overwhelming strengths either. Eli Manning, the running game, the receiving corps and the defense are all either average or slightly above average.

4) Washington Redskins (7-9)
Donovan McNabb is definitely an upgrade over Jason Campbell, but he doesn’t single-handedly make them a playoff team. Keep in mind that Washington went just 4-12 last year.

North
1) Green Bay Packers (11-5)

See Ravens, Baltimore. The Packers have one of the best quarterbacks in the league in Aaron Rodgers, plenty of receivers for him to throw to, a solid every-down running back in Ryan Grant, and a very good defense.

2) Minnesota Vikings (10-6)
The Vikes could be a Super Bowl contender, but they have plenty of questions. Can Brett Favre put up similar numbers to last season? When will Sidney Rice be back? Will Percy Harvin’s migraines be an ongoing issue? Will Adrian Peterson stop fumbling in big games?

3) Chicago Bears (6-10)
With Mike Martz as the offensive coordinator, we know Jay Cutler will be throwing a lot. I’m not sure that’s a good thing.

4) Detroit Lions (4-12)
The Lions are starting to move in the right direction with a core of Matthew Stafford, Calvin Johnson and Jahvid Best, but they still have a ways to go (especially on defense) before they get out of the basement.

South
1) Atlanta Falcons (12-4)

When I was done going through the NFL schedule and picking winners of every matchup, I was shocked to see I had the Falcons 12-4. I’m really not even that much in love with them. But they have a pretty easy schedule and I’m all for going out on a limb, so I’ll keep them here.

2) New Orleans Saints (11-5)
The Saints, on the other hand, have a more difficult schedule. There aren’t any questions on offense, but there definitely are on defense. I don’t expect them to force nearly as many as turnovers or get nearly as many points off turnovers as they did last year.

3) Carolina Panthers (5-11)
DeAngelo Williams and Jonathan Stewart form the best running back tandem in the NFL, but I’m not a big fan of either Matt Moore or the defense.

4) Tampa Bay Buccaneers (3-13)
For the Bucs, this season is all about finding out if Josh Freeman is their quarterback of the future. They better hope he is because they have plenty of other areas they could address with the No. 1 pick next year without having to worry about QB.

West
1) San Francisco 49ers (10-6)

The 49ers have one of the best defenses in the NFL and Frank Gore is one of the top five or six running backs in the league, but Alex Smith will prevent them from being a legitimate Super Bowl contender.

2) Arizona Cardinals (8-8)
Not sold on either Matt Leinart or Derek Anderson at quarterback and not sold on the defense.

3) Seattle Seahawks (7-9)
I think the offense will be pretty good — I especially like running back Justin Forsett — but the defense needs some work.

4) St. Louis Rams (4-12)
Steven Jackson is really the only sure thing on this team. The defense is awful and it looks like Sam Bradford might be under center from Day 1, which could be a disaster given how pathetic both the offensive line and the receivers are.

AFC Wild Card Round
Ravens over Bengals
Chargers over Patriots

NFC Wild Card Round
Packers over Vikings
Saints over 49ers

AFC Divisional Round
Colts over Chargers
Ravens over Jets

NFC Divisional Round
Cowboys over Saints
Packers over Falcons

AFC Championship
Ravens over Colts

NFC Championship
Packers over Cowboys

Super Bowl
Packers over Ravens

So there it is. I think the Packers, Ravens and Cowboys are the three most complete teams in the NFL. Like I said up above, I’m picking the Cowboys to fall short purely for the hilarity… and because the Packers might be better anyway. I’m taking the Packers over the Ravens in the big game because of Aaron Rodgers, who is my pick to be both regular season and Super Bowl MVP.

Today’s list: Top 10 Who songs
I realized that I have yet to rank my favorite songs from my favorite band and decided that needed to be fixed.

10) Heaven and Hell (from Live at Leeds)
9) However Much I Booze
8) See Me, Feel Me/Listening to You (live version from The Kids Are Alright)
7) Sea and Sand
6) My Generation
5) Amazing Journey/Sparks (from Live at Leeds)
4) Baba O’Riley
3) A Quick One, While He’s Away (live version from The Kids Are Alright)
2) Won’t Get Fooled Again
1) Love, Reign O’er Me

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