It’s NFL Prediction time! Wait, don’t go! I can honestly say I have done pretty damn mediocre with my NFL predictions over the past few years. Some hits and some big-time misses (let’s not discuss those). Anyway…
On to this year. Amazingly enough with the NFL, parity doesn’t seem to be the name of the game. The playoff teams in each conference only change slightly from year-to-year it seems and the best three or four teams in each conference are always there come January (unless something drastic happens). This year is no different although you can say there has been a changing of the guard in one division in particular (at least I see it this way). First off, the rankings in each division. No records here, just rankings. Then we will get to the fun-time note section afterwards (* denotes wild-card team):
|NY Jets||NY Giants|
|Kansas City||St. Louis|
- Yes I have Miami beating out the New England Patriots in the AFC East. It will be close. I think only one game will separate these two teams. Also, the Jets should be within a game or two of the division lead and Buffalo should hover around .500. So this division has become the toughest in football. This, I believe, has more to do with the Pats falling ever so slightly than the Dolphins ascending since Miami looks like a playoff team hell-bent on going deep in the playoffs.
- Cleveland faces San Francisco in early December and this game may be for the right to draft #1 overall next spring.
- The NFC South should again have a division winner around the .500 mark. I have Atlanta pulling it out but every team in that division, including Famous Jameis and the Buc-time Band, has a legitimate shot at going to the playoffs…as division champ. No way any team gets within sniffing distance of a wild-card spot from this division.
- Oakland might as well move to L.A. Their team is brutal and can’t seem to string enough wins together to make a dent in the AFC West. Baby Davis isn’t as meddlesome as Papa Al was. Problem is whereas Al had a shit-ton of football knowledge, Mark seems to be fucking clueless to the entire operation. They probably won’t be any better in southern California but at least they will have a shiny new stadium to play in.
- As for the potential other L.A. team, I honestly don’t buy that St. Louis or San Diego would share a stadium with the Raiders. Especially the Rams. Stan Kroenke could buy half of L.A. if he wants so why the hell would he share a stadium with the red-headed stepchild of the NFL?
Now we get to the playoffs and how I see them shaking out. This is becoming a really long post so I will try to keep it as brief as possible. I see New England and Cincy narrowly beating out the Bills, Jets, Ravens, Chiefs, and Chargers in an insanely close wild-card race that should be fun to watch. In the NFC, I have Arizona easily in as the best wild-card and Philly holding on against Detroit, Minnesota, and the Giants.
AFC Wild Card
Miami (3) def. New England (6) – If this was played in Foxboro I think it would be a much different outcome. The Fins complete the takeover by beating Team Kraft in a close one to start Wild-Card weekend.
Cincinnati (5) def. Denver (4) – Another close one I think. It’s about time Carrot Top Dalton led his team to a playoff victory and a chance to go deeper in the playoffs. Is this the end of the road for Peyton?
NFC Wild Card
Dallas (3) def. Philadelphia (6) – Again, another game that could have a much different result if it was up north somewhere (Philly in this case). The Cowboys are going to look good this year and I can see this not being that close.
Arizona (5) def. Atlanta (4) – This time, the Cards won’t go to the rather average NFC South champ and lose easily. They should win rather handily but stranger things have happened in the playoffs before.
AFC Divisional Playoffs
Indianapolis (1) def. Cincinnati (5) – The Andrew Luck train should probably blast through Cincinnati but count the Colts as the few disappointing playoff teams of the past few years.
Miami (3) def. Pittsburgh (2) – The Steelers should outperform their past few years during the regular season but I think Miami will come in as the hottest AFC team. Close one but have to give the nod to the Dolphins.
NFC Divisional Playoffs
Green Bay (1) def. Arizona (5) – Remember that absolute classic these two teams played a few years back where defense was obviously optional and it ended in the most ironic way (defensive touchdown)? We may get that again as long as it isn’t freeze-your-nuts cold on the Frozen Tundra.
Dallas (3) def. Seattle (2) – Captain Celibacy Russell Wilson may have trouble with a very tough Cowboys D in this one. OK maybe using the word “Celibacy” and the letter D in the same sentence was a bad idea. Where was I? Oh yeah, Dallas tames the 12th man and heads north for the conference championship.
Indianapolis (1) def. Miami (3) – The road ends here for the Dolphins. Whether this ends up being a fluke and the Pats come back and win the next five AFC East crowns, we don’t know. I just think this is their year to make a move. But it won’t be to the Super Bowl as Andrew Luck finally brings his team to the promised land.
Green Bay (1) def. Dallas (3) – The road ends here for the Cowboys. Not because they aren’t that good because they are. It’s because the Pack is arguably the team to beat this season and they will show why in their two games at home come playoff time.
Super Bowl L
Green Bay def. Indianapolis – Won’t it be a bit ironic to have the fiftieth version of the Super Bowl at the 49ers home stadium with the 49ers possibly being the worst team in the NFL this year? Poor Jim Tomsula. Anyway, this should be a shootout as Rodgers and Luck chuck the ball all over the field on the grandest stage. Should be close and wouldn’t be surprised to see the same coming-down-to-the-wire atmosphere we saw last year in the Super Bowl (when the Seahawks should have just run the damn ball).
Alright, there we go. Short (not really) and sweet (perhaps). As for all of you who have the specialty pack (Rogers Super Sports Pack or Bell U.S. College Sports Package), the first college football game of the season is this Saturday. As of this morning, there is still no information on the Bell guide from what I can see (and I assume Rogers is the same). We’ve played this game before. I wouldn’t be surprised if it all of a sudden appeared out of nowhere Friday afternoon. Either way, the game between Montana and North Dakota State is Saturday afternoon just so you know.
I am off the next few days so I probably will not post anything. Next week I will have the first week of college football schedules up. Hopefully Bell and Rogers get their act together this season with the speciality packs but I have a feeling that’s a lost cause.