2009-10 NFL Season Predictions
September 10, 2009, 9:18 PM
Filed under: NFL

Here is how I see things panning out this season. After each NFL week ends, I will post a Power Rankings with analysis. For now, I will give you short summaries for each team.

AFC WEST

San Diego Chargers  (2008 Rec: 8-8. This season: 12-4): It took them until week 16 to lock up the division last season, but with Denver dismantling, the Chargers have no competition. LT, Merriman and Cromartie return from injuries, and I see Rivers having a ridiculous season.

Oakland Raiders  (2008 Rec: 5-11. This season: 5-11): Oakland will look improved, but not by much. This team might actually do better than this if they realize they have Jeff Garcia on the bench. However, if Russell stays at QB, I don’t give them a shot.

Denver Broncos  (2008 Rec: 8-8. This season: 3-13): They are going to pay for letting Shanahan go. I can understand the dislike for Cutler, but I feel like it is going to take this team a while to climb back up. Not to mention they have one of the worst defenses in the NFL, and Kyle Orton at QB.

Kansas City Chiefs  (2008 Rec: 2-14. This season: 2-14): I wasn’t really generous here, but go back and look at their schedule — @Ravens, Eagles, Giants, Cowboys, Chargers twice, Steelers. The Chiefs only highlight will be wearing those Dallas Texans uniforms.

AFC NORTH

Pittsburgh Steelers  (2008 Rec: 12-4. This season: 12-4): The defending Super Bowl Champions will grab this division. The last time the Steelers won the big one, they went 8-8 the next season. I wouldn’t worry about that happening again.

Baltimore Ravens  (2008 Rec: 11-5. This season: 10-6): Flacco looked promising in the preseason, Mason is back, and it’s always a good problem to have when you are struggling to pick a starter out of three capable backs. The defense won’t look as good as it has in past years, but nonetheless, the Ravens will be in the postseason.

Cincinnati Bengals  (2008 Rec: 4-12. This season: 6-10): Have you tried playing with the Bengals on Madden ’10? The offensive line is about as productive as Amy Winehouse’s press agent. Unfortunately, that’s how the offensive line will produce in reality. On a positive note, look for Palmer and Ochocinco to reunite their long-lost connection.

Cleveland Browns  (2008 Rec: 4-12. This season: 4-12): No defense. Subpar offense. Mangini not showing confidence in ONE quarterback. Jamal Lewis is 67-years-old. I can go on if you want me to.

AFC EAST

New England Patriots  (2008 Record: 11-5. This season: 13-3): The Patriots were still a legitimate team last season without Brady. This season, this team will be hard to beat. I still am confused as to how people are doubting Brady will be the same. He threw 50 TD’s two seasons ago…are you serious?

Miami Dolphins  (2008 Rec: 11-5. This season: 7-9): In my opinion, the Dolphins had a fluke year last season. What do I mean? I mean, it won’t happen again. Brady has returned, the AFC is deeper, and Miami isn’t going to the playoffs.

New York Jets (2008 Rec: 9-7. This season: 7-9): The Jets are in the middle of a big switch. Rookie QB, new head coach and new defensive players. The defense alone will win the Jets some games. If Sanchez keeps the confidence he had in the preseason, the Jets might even make a splash. They could very well do what the Falcons did last year with the same blueprint.

Buffalo Bills  (2008 Rec: 7-9. This season: 6-10): Buffalo added Terrell Owens to the mix, but a key wide receiver wasn’t the main hole to fill. Trent Edwards is going to have to use his arm to make plays with Owens and Evans, and he hasn’t proven he can do that yet. Throw in that the division is pretty tough, and the Bills fans are waiting for next season. Again.

AFC SOUTH

Indianapolis Colts  (2008 Rec: 12-4. This season: 12-4): It pained me to write this, but I think the Colts still have this division. I think it will be a three-team race all season long between the Colts, Texans and Titans, but tiebreaker goes to Manning. New coach makes me question their chances to go all the way, but this is a start.

Houston Texans  (2008 Rec: 8-8. This season: 10-6): This is the year. I have said it a million times. This will be the season the Texans make the playoffs. One of the best offenses in the NFL paired with a soft schedule. The defense looks shaky, but if the front line can calm down opposing running backs, they should make it through.

Tennessee Titans  (2008 Rec: 13-3. This season: 9-7): Kerry Collins has never had back-to-back winning seasons as a starter. He is also older than Bob Barker. Add that to Haynesworth leaving and a difficult division, and the Titans are sitting at home at season’s end.

Jacksonville Jaguars (2008 Rec: 5-11. This season: 5-11): The Jags didn’t do anything in the offseason to make this team greater than last season besides signing Tory Holt. Also, Jacksonville has blacked out all of the Jags’ games due to no sell-outs. How do you think this season will end for them? Does anyone even care?

NFC WEST

Arizona Cardinals  (2008 Rec: 9-7. This season: 10-6): I think the Cardinals can go one-game better than last year. However, if Warner gets hurt, and we have to rely on Nick Lachey’s BFF to lead the way, switch the Cardinals and Seahawks around.

Seattle Seahawks  (2008 Rec: 4-12. This season: 9-7): Adding Houshmandzadeh (I didn’t even Google the spelling!) will help the pass attack. This team was plagued by injuries last season, so a healthy team will definitely look better. I still don’t think they have the pieces for the playoffs, though.

San Francisco 49ers (2008 Rec: 7-9. This season: 7-9): I really like this team. Decent defense, good running game, and a strong coach. I just think they need something more than Shaun Hill to get the job done. It would also help if Crabtree would stop being a diva and sign the contract already.

St. Louis Rams  (2008 Rec: 2-14. This season: 3-13): The team doesn’t look much different. New coach in Spagnuolo and a healthy Bulger makes them better than last season, but not by much. Still a team rebuilding.

NFC NORTH

Minnesota Vikings  (2008 Rec: 10-6. This season: 12-4): This team’s needs after last season: a quarterback. And they might have addressed it. Have you ever heard of this guy, Brett Favre? I hear he is pretty good. Way under the radar, though. Never gets publicity.

Chicago Bears (2008 Rec: 9-7. This season: 11-5): Cutler is definitely an upgrade from Orton. If Hester can get the receiving down, and the defense stays o top of their game, this team could really be a darkhorse favorite in the NFC.

Green Bay Packers (2008 Rec: 6-10. This season: 9-7): I really do like Green Bay. Rodgers and the rest of the offense is pretty solid, and the defense is pretty legit as well. This is the one team I want to do better than I think they will.

Detroit Lions (2008 Rec: 0-16. This season: 3-13): I mean, ONE win makes this a more successful season than last…so…what can I really say here? Go Calvin Johnson!

NFC EAST

New York Giants  (2008 Rec: 12-4. This season: 13-3): Plaxico might be gone, but that also emerges some young star receivers. Domenik Hixon, Steve Smith and Hakeem Nicks should provide plenty of options for Eli Manning on offense. In one of the toughest divisions in the league, the Giants will emerge on top.

Philadelphia Eagles  (2008 Rec: 9-7. This season: 12-4): The Eagles and Giants will definitely go back and forth all season to grab the division reign. McNabb now has Jeremy Maclin added to his receiving corps, and the Eagles have arguably the best defense in the NFL. Ink them in for the playoffs.

Washington Redskins (2008 Rec: 8-8. This season: 9-7): I take back what I said earlier because I want also the Redskins to be better than I predict. Haynesworth added to the defense is definitely a plus. Also, Malcolm Kelly has overtaken the No. 2 receiver slot and looks to be a big target for Campbell.

Dallas Cowboys  (2008 Rec: 9-7. This season: 7-9): Begin hazing me, but I don’t think the Cowboys have the talent this season. The receivers are mediocre, and the defense is depleted. Not to mention, Wade Phillips is a puppet. Begin the Mike Shanahan sweepstakes! I would like to send a congrats to Cowboys’ fans on the oversized, obstacle of a television screen.

NFC SOUTH

Atlanta Falcons  (2008 Rec: 11-5. This season: 10-6): This division is one of the hardest to figure out. I really like the Falcons, and I like what they did last season. I like the addition of Tony Gonzales, and I think Turner will duplicate last season. The defense on this team is the scare, but I think they will manage just fine. However, it’s going to be a fight to the finish with the Panthers and Saints.

Carolina Panthers  (2008 Rec: 12-4. This season: 10-6): The Panthers are another team that will compete til Week 16 for a playoff berth. Sadly, I have them just missing, but it really is a toss-up. DeAngelo Williams is due for a big season, and this team will definitely compete.

New Orleans Saints  (2008 Rec: 8-8. This season: 8-8): I think the Saints will get the short-end of the stick on this. This isn’t a team I WANT to do better than I predict, but a team that probably WILL do better than I predict. The offense is deadly with Brees and his slew of weapons. Every game within the division could be a shoot-out with the explosive offenses involved…with the exception of the next team.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers  (2008 Rec: 9-7. This season: 4-12): I just don’t see Leftwich doing what Garcia did last season. The team is trying to rebuild, and I am thinking we will see Josh Freeman around Week 8, when they have dropped out of any race.

Now we have the playoffs. Here are what I think the teams will be, possible matchups, and my winners. Get ready everyone, NFL football is upon us.

Wild Card Round Playoffs

Indianapolis over Houston

San Diego over Baltimore

Chicago over Arizona

Philadelphia over Atlanta

Divisional Round Playoffs

San Diego over Pittsburgh

New England over Indianapolis

Philadelphia over Minnesota

New York Giants over Chicago Bears

Championship Round

San Diego over New England

Philadelphia over New York Giants

Super Bowl

Philadelphia over San Diego

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