May 122012
 

 

()=Previous ranking (post-draft) 

32(30). Cincinnati Bengals

After winning the division in 2009, hopes were high in Cincinnati, especially with Terrell Owens coming in during the offseason. Unfortunately, Carson Palmer’s struggles, the ego of the T-Ocho show (it’s no coincidence Palmer had his best games when both were hurt), and injuries on defense left them at 4-12… (read more)

31(32). Washington Redskins

Rex Grossman predicts the Redskins will win the NFC East. Rex Grossman is wrong. Don’t get me wrong, I love that he made that prediction. I love unfounded confidence in sports. I love when a team down 3-0 in a series predicts a series win. I love when a team currently out of the playoff race predicts they will win… (read more)

30(29). Carolina Panthers

The Carolina Panthers had the worst record in the league last year and they were rewarded with the league’s toughest schedule. That’s what you get for being in the same division as Tampa Bay, Atlanta, and New Orleans. They play 6 games against those 3 teams and could easily lose all 6. They also play Green… (read more)

29(31). Seattle Seahawks

The Seahawks went into week 17 in an interesting situation last year. They were 6-9 and missing their starting quarterback. If they lost by 15+, they’d set a record for most losses in a single season by 15+ with 10. For those of you who can’t do math, that would have meant that they lost all 10 of their games by 15+. However… (read more)

28(19). San Francisco 49ers

In the prime of the Mike Singletary era (by prime, I mean when people actually thought this team had a shot at making the playoffs), this team was known for its defense. However, the offense has somehow become the team’s best unit and no, it’s not because the offense got that much better. Alex Smith is still their… (read more)

27(22). Oakland Raiders

After losing the Super Bowl in 2003, the Raider endured 7 straight seasons of 11 losses or more. Last year, they rose to 8-8. This year, I’m projecting a regression for several reasons. First, they lost a significant part of their team in free agency. Nnamdi Asomugha was their best player, hands down. He’s gone. Zach… (read more)

26(21). Denver Broncos

The fans want Tim Tebow. Tim Tebow might not be the best quarterback on their roster. He might be, but he might not be. However, we know what Kyle Orton is. Kyle Orton is boring. Kyle Orton can get you to the playoffs if you have a good supporting cast, but he won’t win any games and if he doesn’t have a good… (read more)

25(18). Miami Dolphins

The Dolphins had an opportunity to contend for a playoff spot. All they had to do was send a 3rdrounder to Denver for Kyle Orton. Orton isn’t a great quarterback or anything, but this team has a good defense and they fixed the running game and offensive line in the offseason so all he’d have to do is not turn the ball over… (read more)

24(23). Tennessee Titans

The Titans are cleaning house. Former Head Coach Jeff Fisher is gone after 17 seasons, replaced with Mike Munchak. Vince Young is gone, as is Kerry Collins, who retired. They drafted Jake Locker with the 8th overall pick and signed Matt Hasselbeck to be a stopgap for them until Locker is ready to… (read more)

23(27). Jacksonville Jaguars

All the Jaguars had to do was beat the Colts week 15 and they had the division and the playoffs wrapped up with 2 weeks to spare. However, they didn’t beat the Colts week 15. Then they lost week 16. Then they lost week 17. They ended up missing the postseason entirely, finishing 8-8 as the Colts once again… (read more)

22(25). Kansas City Chiefs

The Chiefs improved from 4-12 in 2009 to 10-6 in 2010. But did they actually get any better? That can be tough to tell because of how easy Kansas City’s schedule was last season. In 2010, Kansas City played 4 games against teams with better than a .500 record (including playoffs). They went 1-3 in those games… (read more)

21(24). Buffalo Bills

The last time the Buffalo Bills made the playoffs, Bill Clinton was still president (1999). The main reason for that is inconsistent (or consistently bad) quarterback play. Is Ryan Fitzpatrick that quarterback to get them back to the playoffs? I doubt it. Chan Gailey’s offense has always inflated quarterbacks’ stats… (read more)

20(28). Minnesota Vikings

Brett Favre was amazing in 2009 and this team almost went to the Super Bowl. Brett Favre was terrible in 2010, getting benched for Joe Webb, who also sucked. Now, former Eagles’ and Redskins’ quarterback Donovan McNabb is the starting quarterback and many Vikings fans feel he can get them back into the… (read more)

19(16). Chicago Bears

The Bears went 11-5 and made the NFC Championship game last year, but I never bet big money on them to win ever. I didn’t trust them. Jay Cutler is an interception prone quarterback and offensive coordinator Mike Martz is a coordinator whose system leads to a lot of turnovers (a lot of yards and touchdowns too… (read more)

18(20). Cleveland Browns

3rd round pick Colt McCoy took over week 6 as the starter, as a rookie, after 5 weeks of Jake Delhomme and Seneca Wallace. He lost by a lot in his debut against the Steelers, but after that, he had 4 straight strong performances. The Browns beat the Saints and the Patriots in consecutive games, and then came… (read more)

17(17). Detroit Lions

In 2008, the Lions won no games. If they had forfeited every game, their record would have been the same. However, that seems like a long way away now. Bottoming out was what this team needed after a long stretch of terrible play. Bottoming out allowed them to start fresh with new personnel in the front office… (read more)

 

16(13). New York Giants

In 2004, the Giants started 4-1 before finishing 6-10. In 2006, they started 6-2 before finishing 8-8. They still made the playoffs and lost to the Eagles in the first. In 2007, they started 6-2 before finishing 10-6. They eventually got their act together and won the Super Bowl, but their 2nd half struggles were still… (read more)

15(12). St. Louis Rams

In 2009, the Rams won 1 game. Rookie quarterback Sam Bradford instantly made this a better team as the Rams won 7 games and almost made the playoffs. Bradford was 354 for 590 (60.0%) for 3512 yards (6.0 YPA), 18 touchdowns and 15 interceptions. That might not sound great, but consider that he lost Mark… (read more)

14(11). Pittsburgh Steelers

Of the last 10 Super Bowl runner ups, only 3 have made the playoffs the next season, combining to win 1 playoff game. The last time a team won the Super Bowl after losing it the year before was the early 70s. The Steelers have made the Super Bowl three times in the Big Ben era. The last two times they made the Super Bowl… (read more)

Prediction: 9-7 2nd in AFC North

13(15). Tampa Bay Buccaneers

The Buccaneers went 10-6 in 2010 and almost made the playoffs. However, after LeGarrette Blount took over as the starting running back week 7, and added a new dimension to their offense, rushing for 5 yards per carry out of the backfield, they didn’t lose by more than a touchdown for the rest of the season, hanging… (read more)

12(26). Arizona Cardinals

The Cardinals obviously felt they were a quarterback away from being a legitimate Super Bowl contender because they spent a 2nd round pick and a starting cornerback to get Kevin Kolb. However, Kevin Kolb is not Kurt Warner and their supporting cast is not the supporting cast it was in 2009 when they won… (read more)

11(8). Dallas Cowboys

The Cowboys bottomed out last season. Once a popular pick to become the first team to play in a Super Bowl the same season that they hosted the Super Bowl, the Cowboys started the season 1-7 and finished 6-10. However, it wasn’t all bad. Wade Phillips is finally gone. The Cowboys were never going to win a… (read more)

10(7). Baltimore Ravens

Joe Flacco has more wins in his first 3 seasons than any quarterback not named Dan Marino, but there is one thing he’s yet to do and that’s beat Ben Roethlisberger. Flacco has beaten the Steelers twice in those 3 years, but that was when Ben was out of the lineup. Roethlisberger has gotten the best of Flacco… (read more)

9(14). New York Jets

This offseason could have gone in two completely different directions for the Jets. It could have gone very badly. David Harris, Shaun Ellis, Brodney Pool, Antonio Cromartie, Braylon Edwards, Brad Smith, and Santonio Holmes were all free agents heading into this offseason. That’s 4 defensive starters and their… (read more)

8(5). Indianapolis Colts

Peyton Manning had a down season by his standards. He posted his lowest quarterback rating since 2002 (91.9), had his lowest YPA since his rookie season and threw more picks than any season since 2002. However, that doesn’t mean that at age 35, Peyton Manning is a declining player. A lot of his… (read more)

7(9). San Diego Chargers

The Chargers struggled in the start of the 2010 season, nothing new to them. They started 2-5, but like they had in recent years, everyone expected them to be able to bounce back. They looked well on their way, winning 4 in a row, before losing to the Raiders and falling to 6-6. They won their next two games, but a loss to the… (read more)

 6(2). Houston Texans

The Houston Texans have never made the playoffs. They have been trendy sleeper picks for the past few years and have never come through. Some people have sworn off of making them sleepers. I am not one of those people. In fact, this is the first year I can really call Houston one of my sleepers. Peyton Manning… (read more)

5(10). Philadelphia Eagles

The Eagles stole the offseason. They might not be the best team (though they might be), but there’s no question this is the most hyped team. The added a key addition at almost every position, Dominique Rodgers Cromartie and Nnamdi Asomugha at cornerback, Jason Babin at defensive end, Cullen Jenkins at… (read more)

4(6). New Orleans Saints

In February of 2010, the Saints were on top of the world as Super Bowl Champions. However, like every reigning Super Bowl Champion before them since the 2003 New England Patriots, the Saints failed to win a playoff game, losing in embarrassing fashion to the Seattle Seahawks, a team that somehow qualified… (read more)

3(4). Green Bay Packers

The Green Bay Packers won the Super Bowl, as I predicted last August (just saying), last year despite having many players on IR, including several key players. Among those were Ryan Grant, their lead back, Jermichael Finley, their stud tight end, Morgan Burnett, a talented rookie starter at strong safety, Nick Barnett, a… (read more)

 2(1). Atlanta Falcons

The Falcons finished 13-3 last season and got the NFC #1 seed, but they were exposed late. New Orleans came into town week 16 and won and all of a sudden the mystique behind the Georgia Dome, where Matt Ryan had only lost once in his 3 year career, was gone. 3 weeks later, the Packers came in and… (read more)

1(3). New England Patriots

At this time last year, some were talking about the Patriots as a potential 9-7 or 8-8 team that would miss the playoffs. The Jets were the talk of the division and some were even speculating the Dolphins were better than the Patriots. Their defense was inexperienced and their key offensive players were… (read more)

 

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