Tuesday, 4 September 2007

NFL Week: NFC Predictions

Yesterday I gave my AFC Predictions, so today it is time to move onto the NFC.

1. Philadelphia Eagles: 10-6
I like the Eagles a lot this year. Everyone forgets this, but Donovan McNabb was having a great year last year before he got hurt. With Brian Westbrook more developed as a runner, and Kevin Curtis added to an improving Reggie Brown in the WR spots, the offense should be solid. I like the Eagles to return to the top of the East.
2. Dallas Cowboys: 9-7
After Bill Parcells could never quite lead Dallas to take the next step, it's Wade Phillips' turn. Romo being under center all year will help, and the offense should be very solid with multiple options at RB and WR. But there is still some concerns defensively, especially in the secondary.
3. Washington Redskins: 7-9
I'm not sure what it is, but I'm just not that high on the Redskins. I like Jason Campbell and think he will eventually be a solid QB, but I don't know if he is quite ready to it. The WR corps is mediocre, and I'm just not that big on Joe Gibbs the 2nd time around. I don't know.
4. New York Giants: 5-11
I think it might be a long year in New York. They were 8-8 last year, and are now without Tiki Barber, who has been the key cog in their offense for years. I like Brandon Jacobs, but he cannot do all of the things that Tiki did. This places added pressure on Eli, and I'm not sure how that will work out. Plus, I think pretty soon the whole team is going to hate Tom Coughlin.

1. Chicago Bears: 11-5
I have some questions about (namely Rex Grossman), but they are clearly the best and most talented team in the division. The defense should again be dominant, and if Cedric Benson stays healthy, the offense should be good enough to win a lot of games.
2. Minnesota Vikings: 9-7
I went over this a couple of days ago... basically, good defense, great running game... success.
3. Green Bay Packers: 7-9
The Packers will be a solid defensive team, but I have some concerns. Brett Favre has been regressing, making worse and worse decisions as his arm gets a little worse, and that doesn't bold well. The running game will be inconsistent, meaning Favre will be throwing the ball a ton. He's liable to make a lot of mistakes.
4. Detroit Lions: 6-10
The offense should be very explosive, but the defense will struggle. I think they'll be putting a ton of points on the board (which Mike Martz offenses tend to do), but they won't be able to stop anyone. That's a problem.

1. New Orleans Saints: 11-5
I'm not huge on the Saints this year, I just don't see another team in this division that will challenge them. The offense will again be very explosive, but can the defense hold up again?
2. Carolina Panthers: 7-9
If everything goes right, the Panthers could be very dangerous. Just like last year. They have some talent on both sides of the ball, but I don't see Delhomme being able to lead them back to the playoffs.
3. Tampa Bay Buccaneers: 5-11
Just not big on them this year. Yes, they picked up Jeff Garcia, but how much is he really going to help? I know the Eagles did well last year, but that was like a perfect situation for him. I'm not sure how well he will do when asked to do more. I'm just not a big fan of their offensive talent, and the defense is getting older.
4. Atlanta Falcons: 5-11
Bobby Petrino will be good in the long haul, but he's in a tough spot here. New QB, new system, lots of distractions... it could be a tough first year for him.

1. St. Louis Rams: 10-6
I really like the Rams this year... I just think their offense will be so versatile. They have a great QB, lots of receiving options (Holt, Bruce, Bennett, McMichael), one of the best RBs in the game, and a very good backup RB/FB (Brian Leonard). They'll put a ton of points on the board, and their defense should be helped by the drafting of Adam Carriker, who has looked really good this preseason.
2. Seattle Seahawks: 9-7
The Seahawks are sort of like the constant in the NFC... every year they're basically the same, and every year they're contending for the division title. At least that's how it seems to me. I don't see a reason why things will be different this year.
3. San Francisco 49ers: 9-7
Like everyone else, I like the Niners this year. I love what Mike Nolan is doing, building an excellent young core for this team. A lot of this season depends on the continued development of Alex Smith... if he can become a consistently above average QB, the Niners will have a great chance at winning the division. I suspect they're still one more year away.
4. Arizona Cardinals: 6-10
New coach, good skill players, bad O-Line, bad defense... still the same old Cardinals.

Your thoughts? What would you change?