Tuesday, September 6, 2011

The Big NFL Preview Part 2: AFC

I actually got it done! Time for part two.

AFC West
  1. San Diego Chargers
  2. Kansas City Chiefs
  3. Denver Broncos 
  4. Oakland Raiders
I think this is the easiest division to call in the NFL. There's no way the insanity of last year repeats itself. Now that special teams aren't going to be as important, the #1 offense and defense Chargers should run away with the division. The Chiefs are growing, but they're definitely taking a step back from last year's playoff run. Adding LeRon McClain was a solid move and should open up bigger holes for Charles/Mr. Injure My Teammates in a Fight. The Broncos will probably rely on their running game to have a decent year, but their defense still has a lot of holes. Plus the Tebow fans will continue to question John Fox at every step. The Raiders went 8-8 and fired their head coach, so yeah, status quo's maintained there. 

AFC South
  1. Houston Texans
  2. Indianapolis Colts
  3. Jacksonville Jaguars
  4. Tennessee Titans
I've said it before, and I hate doing this. Absolutely hate it. But the Colts are too injured and the Jags and Titans have too many questions. The Texans will make the playoffs... It feels dirty saying that, but they're the most solid team in the division. Even though they're shifting to a 3-4, Wade's actually a great defensive coordinator and they have a lot of talent. Jonathan Joseph and Danieal Manning should improve the secondary enough that they won't be the worst pass defense in the NFL. Ugh... Meanwhile the Colts haven't had a good draft in a while so their depth is depleted, and Peyton might need a 2nd neck surgery... No bueno. 

The Jags and Titans are both very similar teams. Solid veteran QB's that no one gets excited about, elite RB's that fantasy players love, and high-pick rookie QB's that might take over before the season's done. The only difference is that the Jaguars are more aggressive since Del Rio's on the hot seat. He spent more money since he's fighting for his job and the Titans already have a new coach who's setting up his system. They could easily swap, and I'll be rooting for the Titans since I'm a huge Matt Hasselbeck fan, but neither team's doing anything.  

AFC East
  1. New England Patriots
  2. New York Jets
  3. Miami Dolphins
  4. Buffalo Bills
I'm not going to talk about the Patriots much since I could go on for pages, but I obviously think we're the best team in the division. Meanwhile, I think the Jets are taking a step back. One thing I like looking at is where did a team improve compared to last year. LDT's a year older, their defensive line's weaker, their receivers aren't as good, and Sanchez was one of the luckiest QB's in terms of dropped interceptions last year. They're still a very good team because Rex Ryan's a damn good coach, but I wouldn't be surprised if they didn't make the playoffs. 

I'd think the Phins would be decent if they didn't jerk Sparano around this past off season. I don't think the players will commit if they know he most likely won't be there next year. Their defense is solid and they have a great offensive line. If only they had a RB to take advantage of it... The Bills were underrated last year, their record didn't reflect their talent. I don't think they can match it though, people are ready. People know what Fitzpatrick brings to the table and they'll be ready for him. 

AFC North
  1. Pittsburgh Steelers
  2. Baltimore Ravens
  3. Cleveland Browns
  4. Cincinnati Bengals
The Bengals suck, and Andy Dalton's going to have a rough rookie year. Enough said there. I like the Browns better though. Colt's looked great in preseason (once again, meaning nothing, but still) and Peyton Hillis will still be trucking people. The defense has some talent, but they're stuck in a tough division. They'll have a shot when the Steelers and Ravens age. The Steelers and Ravens are both elite teams, but I think it's the Steelers year... again. Roethlisberger's better than Flacco, they both have suspect offensive lines, and Polamalu's better than Reed (yeah I said it).

Tomorrow's my playoff pics. Then Thursday I spaz out and scream like a teenage girl hugging Justin Bieber. 

No comments: